Vata, Pitta and Kapha Checklist

Understanding what you need to do to achieve total health is as simple as understanding Vata, Pitta and Kapha - the three fundamental principles of nature which govern all the activities of your mind and body; Vata is quick, cold and dry by nature. It governs motion, breathing, circulation, elimination and the flow of nerve impulses to and from the brain. Pitta is hot and precise by nature. It governs digestion and metabolism and the processing of food, air and water throughout the body. Kapha is solid and steady by nature. It governs structure and fluid balance and forms muscle, fat, bone and sinew. We all have a certain amount of Vata, Pita and Kapha in our constitution and while all three of them are active, one or two usually dominate. Take this quick questionnaire to determine which principle you need to balance most - Vata, Pitta or Kapha.

Tick the boxes which describe you best.

  Vata Pitta Kapha
Type of Hair dry fine, thinning, reddish,
prematurely grey
thick, oily
Skin dry, rough soft, ruddy oily, moist
Mental activity quick mind, restless,
sharp intellect, efficient,
calm, steady, stable
Memory quick to learn, quick to forget good general memory good long-term memory
Weather aversion to cold weather aversion to hot weather aversion to damp, cool weather
Sleep interrupted, light sleep sound, medium length sound, long, heavy sleep
Reaction to stress excites easily, anxious angers easily, irritated, critical not easily ruffled,stubborn
Body size small frame medium frame gain weight easily
Hunger irregular sharp can easily skip meals
Walk quick determined slow and steady
Moods change quickly intense, slow changing steady, non-changing

Interpreting Your Scores

The highest of the three totals indicates the fundamental principle that you most need to balance. The Vata, Pitta and Kapha Checklist will help you to identify simple changes in your diet or daily routine which could help you to stay fit and healthy. You may choose the type which meets your needs. If two columns have almost the same totals, then you can balance both principles. And, in the rare cases where all three principles are equally present, pay attention to the season of the year. When it's cold and dry - balance Vata; when it is hot, balance Pitta; and when it is cold and damp, balance Kapha.

Characteristics of Vata, Pitta and Kapha

Vata Pitta Kapha
When in balance
Vibrant, lively, enthusiastic, clear and alert mind, flexible,exhilarated, imaginative, sensitive, talkative, quick to respond
When in balance
Warm, loving, contented, enjoys challenges, strong digestion, lustrous complexion, good concentration, articulate and precise speech, courageous, bold, sharp wit, intellectual
When in balance
Affectionate, compassionate, forgiving emotionally steady, relaxed, slow, methodical, good memory, good stamina, stability, natural resistance to sickness
When out of balance
Restless, unsettled, light interrupted sleep tendency to over- exert, fatigued, constipated, anxious, worried, underweight
When out of balance
Demanding, perfectionist, tendency towards frustration, anger, tendency towards skin rashes, irritable and impatient, prematurely grey hair or early hair loss
When out of balance
Complacent, dull, oily skin, allergies slow digestion, lethargic, possessive, over attached, tendency to oversleep, overweight
What aggravates Vata
irregular routine, staying up late, irregular meals, cold, dry weather, excessive mental work, too much bitter, astringent or pungent food, traveling, injury
What aggravates Pitta
excessive heat or exposure to the sun, alcohol, smoking, time pressure, deadlines, excessive activity, too much spicy, sour or salty food, skipping meals
What aggravates Kapha
excessive rest and oversleeping, overeating, insufficient exercise, too little variety in life, heavy, unctuous foods, too much sweet, sour or salty food, cold, wet weather