According to Ayurveda, our body is composed of 3 doshas, pitta, vata, and kapha and it is important to keep them balanced. Pitta is composed of fire and water and holds the qualities of light, oily, hot, acidic, sharp, and liquid. When these elements become imbalanced within the body and mind their qualities can be seen in excess.
Signs that your pitta needs to be balanced
- Frequent episodes of feeling angry or frustrated
Skin prone to rashes and eruptions
Feeling impatient and irritable
Pre-mature thinning or graying of hair
Waking up early and difficulty in falling asleep again
Discomfort during hot weather
Experiencing hot flashes
Excess acid in stomach
Experiencing loose bowel movements
Dizziness, nausea, and diarrhea
If you are experiencing pitta imbalance in your body, there is nothing to worry about as certain lifestyle changes along with yoga can help in achieving the desired balance. Slow, cooling, and grounding yoga can help in catering to the needs of an aggravated pitta. The yoga courses must focus on postures and variation of postures. The postures should be held without irritation. Asanas such as forward folds, seated postures, and supine postures can help in pacifying aggravated pitta. However, you must try to avoid poses involving backbends and heart openers.
It is to be kept in mind that when you perform yoga for balancing pitta, how you perform the asana is as important as the posture. As mentioned above, pitta holds the qualities of sharp and fire and you must not add fuel to the fire. The asana and transitions should be made slowly and passively. This will reduce excess of heat dwelling in the mind and body.
Let’s have a look at 4 easy asanas that can help in pacifying the pitta:
Supta Badha Konasana- Butterfly Pose
This pose helps in reducing the feeling of anxiety and depression along with fatigue. It also helps in relieving menstrual discomfort and stretches the inner thighs and groin. It is the passive and grounding nature of the pose that will help in soothing irritation or tension caused by pitta dosha.
Viparita Karani- Legs Up the Wall
The asana helps in relieving stress and tension from mind and body. It also helps in relieving tension from the hip and lower back. It helps in promoting blood circulation in the body and flushes out the lymphatic system. The blood flow from feet to the rest of the body will help in bringing in a sense of cool and balance the heat of pitta.
Balasana- Child Pose
The child’s pose is effective in reducing stress and calming the nervous system. It also relieves tension from lower back and hips. It is the grounding nature of the pose that makes pitta surrender.
Paschimottanasana- Seated Forward Fold
The pose massages the digestive organs gently along with stretching the shoulders, spine, and hamstrings. It also helps in calming the mind. People with pitta dosha experience bouts of heat physically, mentally, as well as emotionally, the forward fold pose will help in calming and cooling the mind.
Additional Tips for Balancing Pitta
- Try to keep cool avoiding hot temperature and food
Avoid having sour, salty, spicy, oily, and heavy food items
Maintain regular mealtimes
Try to get enough sleep and go to bed early
Get Ayurvedic oil massage ‘ Abhyanga’ with a cooling oil such as coconut
Don’t overwork and stress yourself
Spend some leisure time in doing activities that brings peace
Diet for Pacifying Pitta
Milk, butter, and ghee are considered good for pacifying pitta
Avoid yogurt, cheese, sour cream, and cultured milk as they can aggravate pitta
Avoid sweeteners such as honey and molasses
Sunflower, olive, and coconut oil are good for pitta but avoid sesame, almond, and corn oil
Grapes, cherries, melons, avocados, coconut, mangoes, pomegranates, and ripened oranges, plums, and pineapples are good
Have asparagus, cucumbers, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, broccoli, cauliflower, okra, celery, green beans, and Zucchini
Spices such as coriander, cinnamon, cardamom, and fennel are good for pitta
Following a healthy lifestyle and following the easy 4 yoga techniques can gradually help in balancing pitta dosha.
The author of the article is Kedar Yoga Center in Goa, India. They conduct yoga workshops, yoga teacher training (200-Hour Multi-Style Yoga Course, international certification) and much more at very affordable prices in a private resort in Goa, India.