Ayurvedic Constitutional Evalution Questionnaire
According to Ayurveda, the key to health is in understanding our own personal body type. There are three basic constitutional types, “doshas” in Sanskrit: Vata (or V), the “air” type. Pitta (or P), the “fire” and Kapha (or K), the “water” type. Each of us has some of the characteristics of all three of these. Many of us are dominant in more than one dosha. In general –
Vata people are sensitive and cheerful, quick to adapt to any new situation with enthusiasm. They crave excitement and stimulation, and are often the life of the party. They are quick in thought and in movement, seem to walk a little above the ground, and can be everywhere at once. They may be spacey, lacking in concentration skills, and may not have staying power in projects they begin with zeal. Their energy level is erratic. Physically, are slight and slender. Under stress, they tend towards anxiousness and worry.
Pitta people are bright and brilliant, intense and intelligent. They are very practical, doing what needs to be done with focus and determination. They tend to be ambitious and goal oriented, succeeding through sheer force of will. They are fair minded and logical, and can think through any problem step by step. They are forceful in their relationships, and communicate with directness. They tend to be organized, and their lifestyles are well paced and thought out. Physically, they are of moderate build, and usually have bright, intense eyes. Under stress, they tend towards frustration and anger.
Kapha people are loving, compassionate, and caring, often choosing lives of service. They have calm, patient, and stable personalities, and happily follow a regular routine. They enjoy the peace of home, and cultivate life’s comforts and pleasures. However, they have an innate strength, and work very hard at whatever is truly important to them in a stable and consistent way. They tend to be cautious, committing themselves only after deliberation, but once they have committed they devote themselves entirely. They tend to avoid change, preferring instead the predictable. They tend to move slowly, and conserve their energy. Physically, they are strong and stout. Under stress, they tend towards lethargy, and may have grief or attachment.
When doshas become aggravated, illness results. Each dosha has certain types of illnesses associated with it, for example, ulcers are a common Pitta concern. Also, each dosha has its own unique approach to management, such as personalized diet and lifestyle recommendations. Knowing what our body type is, therefore, the first step toward understanding what behaviors and therapies are correct for us.
This evaluation questionnaire can help to determine your body type according to Ayurvedic principles.
Please answer the following questions to the best of your ability.
Check only the description that is most applicable to you. Use your intuition here! Some of the descriptions include more than one trait; if any or most of the traits listed in a particular line are yours, tick that box.
Analysing your result
Most people are combinations of all Doshas, with one being more dominant. It is common for two doshas to be in close alignment e.g. Vata/Pitta, Pitta/Kaffa. However, for the purpose of this exercise, use the dosha with the highest score in the questionnaire. Please note that these results should not be used to make changes to your lifestyle or diet. A more in-depth analysis should be taken and appropriate advice sought.
Dietary requirements of the Doshas
Eat: Sweet, sour & salty food. Food should be heated and easily digestible.
Always use oil. Raw food should not be eaten continuously. Good foods for Vatta: Oats, Rice, beats, carrots,
celery, garlic, ochra, sweet potatoes, cucumber, apricots, bananas, coconut, figs, grapes, mangoes, oranges.
Eat: Sweet, bitter and astringent foods. “Cooling” foods are good, as well as raw food. Barley, rice, oats, unyeasted bread, asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, lettuce, mushroom, potatoes, apples, apricots, figs, melon, oranges, pears, pomegranate, avocadoes, lentils, almonds, cashews.
Eat: Bitter, pungent and astringent foods. Foods should be drying and heating. Avoid fried, greasy food and berries. All bread should be either toasted or avoided. Buckwheat, millet, rye, barley, rice, peppers, asparagus, peas, green beans, carrots, spinach, lettuce, onion, parsley, apples, apricots, peaches, kidney beans, tofu, miso