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VATA: The Energy to Get Going - Ayurveda: part 3

Vata.jpgVata, derived from the elements of space and air is the most powerful of the three doshas - Vata, Pitta, and Kapha and is the energy of movement.

Physically, Vata individuals are usually tend to have dry skin, hair, and lips. They also sleep lightly and have a sensitive digestive system. The balanced Vata individual is active, creative, and gifted with a natural ability to express and communicate. Psychologically, they are distinguished by a quick mind but a short memory. They are also quick to anger and to forgive.

In an individual, an imbalance of their Vata dosha can result in irregular thirst and appetite and digestion problems. In addition, it also results in drastic weight loss, hypertension, and weakness.

Psychologically an imbalance results in a propensity to get bored very easily, a penchant to act without thinking things through, and an inability to save money. Imbalance will also result in feeling out of control, anxious, and depressed.
 
Vata-meditation.jpgIt is advised for Vata individuals to dress warmly as they are prone to feeling cold. Steam and usage of humidifiers and a daily pre-shower oil massage using warmer, heavier oils like almond or sesame is also recommended.
 
Dr. Chandy believes that one of the most important things a Vata individual can do to ensure balance is to devote some time to sitting still. He says, "It is very important to have 'me' time." He further adds, "One needs to spend some time meditating. You don't have to sit cross legged and chant a mantra for this. You can meditate even when you are dusting your house or cutting the vegetables or going for a walk or a run. And this is something that everybody irrespective of their dosha should do."

Nutrition Guidelines

A Vata body type should eat warm, moist, slightly oily and heavy foods to counteract the dosha's dry and cold attributes. The best flavors to calm the Vata imbalance are sweet and salty dishes - but in moderation. As Vata individuals are naturally lean, they can eat larger quantities than individuals with other dominant doshas. It is recommended they consume warm milk, wheat, fresh fruits like apricots and vegetables which include asparagus, beets and carrots. For non-vegetarians, it is suggested to stick to fresh organic meat.
 
Your Food and Your Mood - Yogurt

yoghurt.jpgWe have all grown up believing that if there is one thing that we can binge on, it is Yogurt. It is rich in calcium, magnesium, zinc, vitamins like B complex and protein. It is a lesser known fact that to digest yogurt, one must have a strong digestive system due to its tendency to ferment in the digestive tract. This is why practitioners of Ayurveda recommend consuming yogurt at noon when the digestion is at its best and pairing it with honey, goose berry or sugar.
 
Dr. Chandy says, "In moderation, yoghurt is a nutritional item as it strengthens the body, accelerates digestion, stimulates the taste buds, and reduces bladder irritability. However, bear in mind that the consumption of incompletely coagulated yogurt may flare up psoriasis, bleeding in hemorrhoids and may cause giddiness."
 
The 10 Big Villains

In this column we look at the ten big villains of modern life that have made us so susceptible to ailments. One of the biggest villains of the piece is the 'Sedentary Lifestyle' most of us lead. In recent history the incidences of heart diseases, joint problems, obesity, and diabetes have increased and are no longer limited to the middle aged and elderly.

According to Ayurveda, a direct result of a sedentary lifestyle, where people spend the majority of their time seated and not taking up any form of physical activity, is rheumatoid arthritis (Vata Sonita), which is a result of Vata imbalance.  

With diet modifications, active lifestyle and Ayurvedic treatments from qualified Ayurvedic doctors, Vata individuals can control these conditions without any of the side effects that stem when you use allopathic medicines.

Flash

Applying sour curd once a week to one's scalp and hair prevents formation of dandruff.

chandy.jpgDr. Chandy George, the Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultant at Balance Wellness Club brings over 15 years of experience in the field of Ayurvedic treatments and therapies. His uncanny and remarkable ability for accurate diagnosis (using no other diagnostic tool than his three fingers to  feel your pulse - an ancient process called nadi pariksha) and his compassionate, intuitive skills have helped him treat some of the complicated imbalances with great insight and success.