Our Kapha dosha
Yes, that’s right, we all have a Kapha 🌎 dosha. Right inside of us, working intelligently for our benefit. It keeps our system in union, functioning to the best of its ability with whatever nourishment we give our body.
We also have a Vata 🌪 and Pitta 🔥 doshas working right alongside Kapha, keeping everything moving and transforming, all three working in harmony or as close to it as they can.
Our Kapha dosha creates cohesion and is defined in our body as phlegm. Although we often consider phlegm as unwelcome because of its icky sticky nature of earth and water combined. Phlegm from Ayurveda wisdom, creates a foundation for structure in our body.
Our Kapha dosha is the glue that sticks and holds us together. If we get too dry, Kapha crumbles. If we get too damp, Kapha clogs up. It’s a teetering gentle balance.
Life itself is a dynamic force of harmony, change and adjustment. Too much of anything and you are going to feel the imbalance, or fight to not feel anything at all. When our Kapha dosha starts to get bolshy, you will feel its heaviness pressing into the small little corners of your body, presenting as congestion.
Doshas are alive in all things of life, and climate also has a dominant dosha. For many countries in the world, there are certain seasons for Kapha to build and create excess. Generally speaking it is considered the ‘Rainy season.’
Lets face it folks, for some countries, like Ireland, it is the ‘Rainy season’ most of the time. 😭😭 Hence we are blessed with the forty shades of green year round, 🌳all because of our Kapha dominant climate.
Ayurveda and Yoga do not consider this a negative or positive, but what is fact for this part of the world.
Our weather creates impressions in the body. If we have a tendency to be slow to alleviate our Kapha dosha, and suddenly the weather goes into cloudy, dull, damp and rainy and mild…our Kapha dosha is heading into a cocktail party of Kapha.
So we get no ‘Boo Hoo!’🤗 sympathy from Ayurveda!🤦♀️ It is what it is. We can help ourselves or feel the pressure of Kapha anytime it begins to aggravate. If a body is able to manage through the effort of its natural intelligence of doshas, then generally there is no problem.
All doshas move at different times from a blend of accumulation, into aggravation and alleviation.
If you notice that you are a little stuffed up, this is accumulation, as you begin to feel a heavy head at certain times, this is aggravation of the day. Kapha is more noticeable morning and evening, in the late summer, early autumn, winter leaving and early spring.
Congestion at specific times of the day means you have a little Kapha imbalance, so you have some work to do to keep up with alleviating Kapha.
Healthy dosha balance goes happily from accumulation to aggravation into alleviation, it is the natural order of perfect health.
Even our minds have this balance of; getting tired, I am tired, oh I feel better now! Keep a little mind diary, and notice this flux of energy. It is quite amazing, it starts simple, feels a little worse and then passes again.
But sometimes a dosha may leave aggravation and not take the door to alleviation! …instead it moves in for a Kapha cocktail with our weather getting wetter and mild. And BOOM!!! We have an overflow of phelgm…gloop, gloop, gloop.
Sinus problems, headache, chesty cough, lethargy, feeling stuffed up and heavy and maybe sleep too. This is when our Kapha dosha did not receive enough alleviation, or alleviation at the right time or due to some other dosha imbalance. Kapha ends up on a detour to lots of congestion and excess icky phlegm. Yuck. 😓🤧
How to keep phlegm balanced? If you live in Ireland, well, you have your work cut out for you.
But as a little joke… you have two hopes. No hope or Bob Hope. 😂😂
Weather in Ireland at any time of year is easily Kapha increasing; damp, cool, sticky, humid, all are big flags waving 🚩 for the Kapha dosha.
We can turn to nutrition 🥙🥗🥘for some serious help.
For starters(no pun intended, but Kaphas should avoid eating for the sake of it, especially if congested). Simplest methods?
Kapha needs to become mentally motivated and interested in their own nutritional benefit. 🤨 Getting fully active in their own health and wellness. Kapha can tend to want to hang around, not doing a lot, sort of in abeyance or dreaming of flowers and clouds and love and dreamy stuff.🌷
In serious aggravation Kapha gets bulky, gloopy and just sticks itself in the way of everything, no matter where it is. Its like traffic cones ⚡ all over the motor way, and the whole road system has to dive and dodge to get to work on time, creating internal roadwork chaos. A bit of a nightmare! 😫
When we bring in proper consistent alleviation, we allow Kapha to find its rhythm and rhyme and it easily schmoozes back to its content worker bee mode, keeping the show running, behind the scenes, no drama.
New status: ” happy camper”.💃🕺 Our sinus problems reduce, our headaches disappear. Should we continue on a Kapha reducing diet and Yoga practices, the weather no longer has such a big impact on our Kapha dosha and we notice a difference in our whole health and wellness.
Most especially, the climate and weather will not affect our moods as much, provided we can keep alleviation for all the doshas at a consistent level.
Alleviation is always required and is a part of the natural cycle in the life of Dosha. If we have aggravation and nothing to relieve it, we get a bottle neck. It will continue to fill and eventually has to find relief elswhere, if the first natural option is not available.
If dosha doesn’t receive soothing in the natural process of life , it will overflow, and end up where is does not belong, sitting elsewhere. It’s not pretty. 🤷♀️ And phlegm elsewhere will move first into somewhere familiar and homey…like more excess phlegm in the chest, the nose, the sinuses, the head and throat and stomach. EEK! Not a good option.🤔
Nutrition is a vital component for Dosha balance, but here is a little short view of what I feel is important for signs of excess Kapha accumulation:
In a more Kapha generic view, spice things up, and eat lighter foods. Reduce portions if you are eating just to eat. The easiest way to learn portion size is to use a smaller plate for a week, and see how much lighter you feel. There is less pressure to eat everything on your plate. Simple but very effective!
Make sure you are actually thirsty before you drink 12 litres of water per day. (I am joking, that is far to excessive!) 😂 I mean what big plastic water bottle company thought of that money spinner?😲
Never drink or eat anything cold or cool when the weather gets sticky cool, or if Kapha is in imbalance. Never ever ice in a cool or cold climate.
Use turmeric, spicey spices, cinnamon, chili powder, garam masala, cardamom, cumin, fennel, ginger your own favourites.
Explore Kitchari, my own recipe is so simple and so delicious, and is a good start to developing your taste buds again, if you are over stimulated by Kapha or food. Click here for more on that…
Absolutely reduce all sugars, coffee, refined foods. Developing clarity in the six tastes we need every day -click here- is the beginning of learning to love your food that will change your life. If you need help, just contact me for a dosha diet and lifestyle consultation, click here for more on that.
Get down into the shops, buy some good fresh vegetables, this is your body, you are building steps to balance or imbalance every time you buy from a shop.
Broccoli, Kale or spinach, stir fry them or even better steam them, throw spices on them and have some brown rice or even better, couscous.
Avoid food combining. Keep to the idea that you simply, seamlessly, easily can identify every single element on your plate. (Sauces, unless homemade, are often refined and filled with sugar and salt!)😫
Reduce meat and cheese, it is so congestive and heavy on the system. Brie and those fabulous yummy heavy cheeses are the best way to drive Kapha unhappy if the body cannot deal with daily phlegm already.
The main meal in the middle of the day would be a great relief for the whole functioning system.
Foods that are spicier, lighter and bitter tend to ease Kapha and this in turn will create a better flow of natural body wisdom.
Get active so you sweat a little bit, jump up and down if you are up for it.
Breathing, lots of breath awareness, lots of keeping the channels of breath alive and the mind awakened and alert will help all doshas.
Yoga. Every day, get up and get active-er!
Swimming in the ocean, amazing, although cold, it has the effect on the body, mind and heart of lightening the weighty-ness of our daily tensions.
Smile, this is your life, make it be joyfilled!
If it is weather of winter (even thought it could be summer in Ireland) the wear clothes to keep warm, keep your neck warm at least, be prepared for all the season in an Irish summer or winter! Weather can affect our immune system if our Kapha dosha is feeling funky.
Neti pot once a day for sinus congestion, this is a learned practice and it does need education from a qualified therapist, but it is very effective, and completely freed me of my long term sinusitis problems many years ago. Contact me if you want a short simple lesson on the basics of Neti pot and nasal cleansing.
Yoga breathing practices are ideal for Kapha dosha balance. If you know Yoga, then the snoring breath, or Ujjaii breathing re-balances Kapha in the throat and head (Udana Vayu), and Kapalabhati reduces Kapha in the digestive system. If you are not familiar, please ask a Yoga teacher to help guide you into a safe practice for your body type for a therapeutic attitude for Kapha.
Postures like Vipariti Karani, forward folds, all to create heat and warmth to help open the channels to allow the phlegm shift. Back bends to open the breath, Warrior postures with a slight pause after the inhale to warm the chest and stomach. Sun salutes are all great, but moderate speed to create heat and not to frustrate Kapha.
Or you could just hold chair pose for a while and see how that helps while a light broth simmers on stove. And then start chair pose again!
If you want to know more about your balance, contact Kelly for a Dosha consultation or a Kapha reducing treatment in Clarenbridge. Oh, seriously, you don’t know a wake up massage until you have met a Kapha reducing or Kapha balancing massage!! Its stronger than the best coffee and has only brightness and Joy as the benefit.
Mobile: 086 1778369
May we all find peace at every step, and may Kapha Dosha be happy and content keeping the show running behind the scenes,
Kelly 🌳🙋♀️ I love my work, I love my life, and thank you for reading. It is not necessary to understand everything all at once, but to find what works for you, in small simple methods is the intention of Ayurveda. I hope I have helped.
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We are not all just this body, we are not all just this breath, we are not all just these thoughts or emotions, we are not all just this wisdom. We are so much more, and we must work each day to remember, that we are whole, we are beautiful, we are united, we are free.