The qualities of Vata-Pitta are light, dry, sharp, subtle, spreading and mobile. The qualities of Vata-Pitta provides a key to understanding what it means to have a predominantly Vata-Pitta Prakriti. The heat from Pitta keeps Vata dry and adds a sharp, spreading quality to Vata’s sensitive nature. The main qualities of Vata-Pitta are dry, light, and hot. These qualities will express themselves throughout your mental, emotional and physical make up.
- In excess, the dry quality may manifest as a dry sense of humor, you may feel cynical or find yourself fluctuating between constipation and diarrhea. The dryness can also affect the skin, lips, hair, nails or bones (arthritis).
- The “light” quality shared by Vata and Pitta may manifest itself as a lanky physique with defined muscle tone. It can also promote a constant supply of inspiration.
- The heat of Pitta overwhelms the coolness of Vata may lead to anger, irritability, and frustration.
- The subtle quality of Vata is mitigated by Pitta’s substance and these types tend to have more stability and strength than pure Vata types
- The mobile and spreading qualities may lead to a healthy ability to “multi-task” be an excellent project manager. Or it may predispose one to take on too much and to get overwhelmed and scattered.
- The sharpness of Pitta creates ambition and lofty goals paired with Vata’s active imagination it makes for visionary ideas. Depending on the exact proportion of Vata and pitta these ideas may stay ideas or become reality.
Tastes That Increase and Decrease Vata Salty, pungent, and bitter tastes increase Vata-Pitta by increasing its drying and heating qualities. An example of the pungent taste is chili peppers. Bitter is most commonly found in most leafy greens and many herbs. While salty is found in restaurant food and salt.
The sweet, astringent, and sour tastes decrease Vata-Pitta by bringing moisture, consolidation and balanced digestion to the body, which are opposite qualities to those of Vata. An example of a naturally sweet taste is wheat; of sour: pickles; of astringent: pomegranate.
Opposites as Medicine
It is common for our predominant dosha (Vata, Pitta or Kapha) to increase more quickly than other doshas because we tend to perpetuate what we know best. For example, if your dominant dosha is Vata-Pitta, you will naturally set ambitious goals in your personal and professional life and fill your life with activity to reach them, due to the mobile and spreading quality of Vata-Pitta you may find yourself overwhelmed, exhausted, and burnt out if you don’t manage your energy wisely.
Qualities opposite to Vata-Pitta are moist, grounding, cooling, smooth, care-free and stabilizing. It is therefore best for Vata-Pitta individuals to seek out physical and emotional environments, routines, and foods that possess these opposite qualities.
A Vata-Pitta individual does well to have cooling, freshly cooked, nourishing foods. Often times Vata-Pitta types tend to rush through their meals and rarely have time to prepare wholesome food. Taking adequate time to eat and allowing time for home cooked meals can balance the heat, dryness and lightness of Vata Pitta.
Herbal Support for a Vata-Pitta
Constitution Using herbs to manage your constitution compliments the changes you make in your diet and lifestyle. Shatavari, Amalaki and Arjuna are three of the primary herbs used to remove excess vata-pitta from the body and maintain balance.
Opposites in Climate and Lifestyle as Medicine
The ideal environment for a Vata-Pitta individual is cool and wet, like the Pacific Northwest. Sweet or playful scents, like the essential oils of rose, jasmine, or orange; calming music and joyful emotions are also good “medicines” for Vata-Pitta.
The mobile and spreading quality of Vata-Pitta can drive them to take on too many projects. This can lead to exhaustion and burnout, which in turn causes irritability, loneliness, and frustration. While reducing your commitments can feel contrary to your nature, it can be extremely beneficial for you to incorporate into your life. For example, learning to say no to new opportunities and focusing on self care such as regular time for meditation and gentle yoga. Also try to not rush through meals, chewing them thoroughly and taking a breath before moving on to your next activity.