Any ayurvedic practitioners out there? I'm not formally trained in ayuveda but have read as much as I can and find it absolutely fascinating and seems to be the missing link where diet advice (paleo included) fails. As we've seen, a high fat diet does not always work for everyone, and certain foods (sweet potatoes) do not work for everyone. Ayurveda accounts for these things.
My question is, what arepeople's experiences, especially dealing with or being kapha? It seems that the paleo diet works perfectly for vatas, really well for pitas, and not as great for kapha types.
asked byJeff__1 (15236)
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on March 01, 2011
at 01:37 PM
i find there is a lot of value in Ayurveda, and considered going to the practitioner school at Kripalu to learn more. im also kapha with a dash of pitta. some of the recommendations i find so wonderful, and the general idea to go against ones nature is immensely helpful. im firmly rooted to the earth and will practice weightlifting and yin yoga all day but will only run if someone is chasing me with a knife! i do try to incorporate some of the dietary recommendations, but overall i did not see a great result (in terms of weight or disease management) when i adopted the kapha recommendations completely. i have had more luck being paleo (as far as my weight, but also for my pitta-related multiple sclerosis) than with the kapha diet recommendations but i do employ some of the lifestyle recommendations (netti, yoga, self-massage) and drink A LOT of ginger tea! i dont know a ton about Ayurveda, but much of what ive learned seems very intuitive and shouldnt be dismissed.
ETA: i eat a lot of raw cabbage, ghee, cauliflower, ginger, brussels, daikon, rapini, kale, green onions, asparagus, lemon and lime zest and juice, cinnamon, green and red chile peppers, bone broth as a beverage or light soup, green onions, turmeric (both as a spice and as a supplement), cumin, coriander, curry, and i drink a lot of hot herbal tea throughout the day. i also will add ginger or cinnamon essential oils to my self-massage oil to make it warming.
on March 01, 2011
at 03:23 PM
I apologize before hand if this rambles a bit: I was raised with Ayurveda and what you have to understand (through study) is that for every proscription provided there is also an antidote, for instance, certain branches of ayurveda proscribe tomatoes or nightshades, but then say: blanche, peel, seed the tomato (the seeds are said to be hard on the kidneys) and "treat" with turmeric while cooking to negate unwelcome effects. Likewise, you can antidote meats with kapha spices: cinnamon, cayenne & paprika, which "lighten" the density of the foods.
I have a vata-kapha prakriti & I also go in and out of phases wanting red meat. I love it in the winter but I also mix it up: lamb, seafood, chicken, beef, elk, etc. But I don't need much more than 3-6 oz most days unless I'm really active.
And you also have to understand that "eating according to dosha" doesn't mean you eat just one way all year. You don't just eat kapha foods all year round, that's horribly unbalancing. You have to eat seasonally. Today we are entering Kapha season, and what's available in spring time, what grows first?
Bitter greens, sprouts, strawberries, etc. What's left in your pantry? Following an ayruvedic diet meant to mimic what mother nature does.
Kapha March-June Pitta July-October Vata Nov-Feb
If you're wanting to eat paleo in the winter regions, as our ancestors may have: you're going to need a lot more fat, proteins, root vegetables, fruit that might keep: apples, or dried fruits and nuts. Not a lot of berries unless it was already pounded into pemmican. Not a lot of broccoli or asparagus available in the January wilds. Whereas summer is full out abundance of green things, rich sources of carbohydrates and fish, herbs, etc.
It is helpful to make the distinction now, that describing doshas is really the art of observing the balance of three natural FORCES in one???s body. Vata is responsible for catabolism, (breaking down) Pitta, for metabolism (enzymatic) & Kapha represents anabolism (building). This balance is what allows an individual to experience & express health & wellness. Kapha, being the anabolic force, is said to have a predominance of "sweet" already in the body - i.e. they naturally have a tendency to "build more tissue."
It's not that they don't need protein and good fats, but the ratio needs are going to be different that a high-metabolic vata. And even if you balance and preventatively treat for Kapha metabolism, that person will never have the same metabolism as one of the other doshas. No matter how thin/fit a kapha person becomes, they will never appear as petite in bone structure as the other doshas.
Each dosha needs all the good stuff that paleo type eating recommends in the right Ratio. Each of them also need particular things to keep them each in balance, for Kapha: more vegetables and spice than a Vata needs, etc.
Cadu makes some good points as well, but doesn't take into account that sour foods are fine when taken in season, again it's not a 360 day eating design.
on March 01, 2011
at 04:29 AM
A holistic medicinal system, Ayurveda is both a dietary and lifestyle regime. It prescribes advice on diets depending on your individual mind-body type (that is, your dosha), whether kapha, pitta, or vata. http://paleohacks.com/questions/25411/ayurveda-and-paleo#axzz1FJn8lt7y
Even for people who have slower carbohydrate metabolisms (kapha types), I think paleo is highly effective, as long as you eliminate the starch.
One of the main points of disagreement I have with Ayurveda is regarding kapha imbalance. If you're someone who gains weight easily, i.e. has a slow metabolism (a kapha-type person), Ayurveda says to prioritize "astringent, bitter, and pungent" tastes and minimize heavy, oily foods. Basically, Ayurveda proposes that imbalanced kaphas eat warm, dry, light foods like salads and light soups. This is one of the main points on which I disagree with Ayurveda, and for the following reason.
Low-carb diets that emphasize meats & seafood, eggs, low-carb dairy, and green vegetables seem to work really well for people who have disrupted metabolisms and are overweight (i.e., kapha imbalanced) in causing spontaneous weight loss. Also, sour, fermented foods are good for the gut, and people who are overweight often have unhealthy guts. However, Ayurveda advises to reduce use of sour foods if you're a kapha individual.
There's my 2 cents! Let me know if it helps.
on April 16, 2013
at 02:49 PM
This thread may not still be active, but I do want to add that as as self-diagnosed Kapha (with some pitta) who has been pretty strictly paleo/primal for several years, I found a tremendous change in my energy/hunger/weight levels by eliminating almonds, which I'd been relying on heavily (I love almonds!) and eating walnuts, sesame, sunflower & pumpkin seeds instead. I've also cut back considerably on coconut, only using the oil to cook with occasionally, and mostly avoiding avocados as well. I still eat a 40-50% fat diet, heavy in grass-fed red meat (some fish, some chicken), but these changes have been remarkably beneficial. As much as I love almonds, I feel so much better that I don't miss them at all. Just my personal kapha experience, such as it is.
on March 01, 2011
at 03:50 AM
As far as I know, Ayurveda is a practice of medicine, not an advice on lifestyle. They classify people into the three groups you have indicated, to advise a treatment. I am not sure, but I believe they advise to remain a vegetarian while on treatment. Ayurveda, or homeopathy or for that matter any other method of treating illness has little to do with being Paleo/Primal.
on March 01, 2011
at 03:37 AM
Which "the paleo diet" are you talking about? A lot of the paleo advice here is given to people with metabolisms that are broken in a certain way. But there is no such thing as THE Paleo diet. There have been so-called Paleolithic people all over the world; in fact, the so-called Paleolithic age has not ended everywhere. One of the mistakes that civilized people ("Takers" in Daniel Quinn's parlance--look him up, he's fascinating) often make when we are speaking of human history is speaking in terms of "we." Well, WE are not the only human beings on earth, and WE do not encompass the whole of human history. Different peoples have different cultural things going on. Some people are still very much in the Stone Age. And they eat differently than other people in the Stone Age. Mostly because they're in different areas of the world, and they have different foods available to them.
What would be "Paleo" in your area? Try that.
I'm not from India and do not feel comfortable practicing a diet they prescribe. I don't have regular access to their foods and I don't have that ancestry.