Kaph: Bevinding Factor - by Arti Gaur
As we know by now, all bodily diseases arise out of the disturbance of the equilibrium of doshas. Vata, which is of prime importance, constitutes the very life of a being, as it is responsible for all activities of the body. Pitt
helps in digestion and metabolism, and kaph
is the promoter of strength in the form of ojas. What ojas is we will discuss later when we discuss tissue elements of the body. For now we can understand kaph, also called sleshma
, as that which binds the body together. Its qualities are whiteness, coolness, stability, viscosity, heaviness, unctuousness, sliminess, numbness, obstruction, sweetness, and delay in manifestation. Chest, neck head, joints, and stomach are the sites of sleshma.
is said to be the best constitution, as it is almost impossible to maintain an equilibrium at all points of time in the body as the doshas keep increasing or decreasing according to the time of the day, season, and the age of a person. It is said to be the best because kaph is the causative factor of the least number of diseases in the body. A kaph prakriti person has a strong physical body, with strength like that of a bull, fair complexion, heavy and soft hair, a pleasant disposition, is patient, fond of sweets, and is generally mentally, emotionally, and financial stable. They are compared to Brahma, Shiva, devtas, horse, bull, or swan.
The characteristics of kaph are sweetness, coolness, and heaviness. The diseases caused by kaph are treated with drugs having pungent, bitter, astringent, sharp, hot, and unctuous qualities. The causes of disturbance of kaph are sleeping in the daytime, laziness, lack of exercises, excessive intake of food, which are sweet, sour, saline, oily, and heavy in nature. Dominance of kaph is seen in the first part of the day, childhood, winter, and immediately after eating a meal. Persons of kaph prakriti are advised not to sleep in the daytime
as it would result in an increase in the kaph dosha.
Any imbalance in the state of equilibrium of these three doshas (vat, pitt, and kaph) results in a disease. Diagnosis of any disease is made on the basis of the state of each of these doshas in a body and treatment is given keeping in consideration the constitution of the person and the dosha that goes into a disturbed state.
The state of any dosha greatly depends on one’s dietary habits and daily routine or lifestyle
that one follows. The diet and routine aid the functioning of the physical body. This routine is also subdivided into the day, the night, and the seasonal routine where diets and habits useful or detrimental are given by the ancients. Just as vat, pitt, and kaph are the pillars on which the body stands, the three supports or aids for attainment of good health are ahara, or diet, swapna, or rest/sleep, and brahmacharya
or control of sexual activities. If these three upasthambha (supports) are observed in moderation the individual can attain not only complete health but also a longer life.