Quick lesson on kapha dosha: Kapha is the energy of lubrication and structure. Kapha type people will have a very well-built structure in their body and are very steady in their mind. They don't get really stressed out or angry like a pitta and they don't get anxious or worried as much like a vata. They're pretty steady, easy-going, peaceful, and happy.
But when their food is too heavy, kaphas can feel very heavy in their body, and in their mind — because kaphas already have a well-built nature.
Why? Because vegetables light, astringent, and bitter — which are all the qualities and tastes that balance kapha.
The bitter and astringent tastes are foods that "break the body down" which are balancing for kapha. These tastes help tone tissues, soak up excess water, cleanse and clear excess tissues which lightens the body. This is exactly what kapha needs.
When kaphas have meat frequently, they're going to feel more heavy for two reasons.
1) Because their digestive fire is not a full strong burn, it's more like a slow, low burn. And meat is hard to digest — it needs a pretty strong digestive fire to digest it properly.
Vegetables, barley, basmati rice, or quinoa is really nice for kapha because all of that is light food, and it's easy to digest. In Ayurveda, we want to make sure that agni, our digestive fire, is functioning well and is easily able to digest what we give it.
2) Meat can create an overbuild of our tissues because we are essentially borrowing the tissues from the animal. For example, a vata type person might not be that strong or that well-built on their own, so they actually need the help from an animal to help keep their body strong.
But kaphas, like I said, are already built and they don't need the help from animal tissues — they can generate their strength themselves. They have to be careful not to get overbuilt. They need help to break down and tone those tissues. Vegetarian diet totally promotes that. Meat eating diet for kapha could definitely cause overbuild.
We want kaphas to feel light, spicy, and dry!
So in general, kaphas will do better with a vegetarian diet or even a vegan diet. One of my clients I was working with is kapha. So lovely. She said, "Mon, you know, I really realize that a vegan diet does so well for me. I feel so good when I have that. I don't know why I don't do that more often." I said, "Well, just do that more often." ;)
So here's empowerment to you and a challenget.
See if you feel lighter in your body, lighter, more peaceful in your mind. Perhaps there's just an overbuild from the meat that you've been eating, so give it a try! And if you like it, know that that works for you and do that most of the time.
Again, we're freeing ourselves from looking at foods as a very restrictive process, and instead, we're looking at this as well-rounded eating. We can still have all of the foods that we enjoy. But to understand what works best for our body most of the time is where the healing power of Ayurveda comes in because that promotes longevity. That promotes a good, strong, working digestive fire, which actually helps prevent so many sicknesses.
Any kaphas out there who want to give this a shot? Comment below and let us know that you'll give vegetarian a try, if even for a couple weeks just to see how you feel.
I hope this helped you as we keep bringing Ayurveda to life!