All Ayurvedic cooking and recipes are based on the concept of bodily constitution, or dosha. Certain food elements in the diet help to balance the mind and body, which can both prevent illness and cure it.
Through consistently choosing foods most appropriate for individual body types, Vata, Kapha, or Pitta, people can take control of their health and problems.
Ayurvedic Foods for People with Vata Dosha
Those with Vata doshas should eliminate raw foods from the diet. They should also limit dry foods and refrain from drinking too many cold liquids. Instead, the Ayurvedic cooking and recipes for this body type should be centered on whole grains such as oats, rice, and wheat.
Vegetables such as green beans, sweet potatoes, asparagus, carrots, and peas should restore balance to people with Vata doshas. Most fruits are helpful as well.
When cooking recipes appropriate for a Vata dosha, one should use olive, sesame, or nut oils, and stick with butter, whole milk, and cream. Nuts are also a great addition to recipes made for balancing Vata doshas, and small amounts of some spices may be included. The following work well in these dishes:
Ayurvedic Recipes for People with Pitta Dosha
People with Pitta doshas have a fiery body type which sometimes needs cooling. Ayurvedic cooking and recipes developed for them should be mild in flavor with very few hot, spicy ingredients.
The Ayurvedic recipes best for this body type are those which involve cooking in ghee which can be heated to extreme temperatures for sautéing vegetables.
Most vegetables are cooling to the Pitta dosha, including green beans, lettuce, broccoli, celery, and beets. Recipes which contain rice or soy milk and a variety of fruits and berries are also valuable to people with a Pitta body type.
To give Pitta dishes more flavor, these spices may be added:
- Orange zest
For protein, Pitta dishes might include lima beans, lentils, garbanzo beans, yogurt, or cottage cheese.
Ayurvedic Diet for People with Kapha Dosha
Because people with a Kapha dosha tend to be heavier, it is best for them to avoid fried foods, sweets, and using other highly caloric ingredients in recipes.
Ayurveda cooking and recipes for the Kapha dosha call for diluted milk and small portions. Fruits and vegetables are the key to this Ayurvedic diet, and only small amounts of olive oil should be used in cooking. Nuts are not used in the recipes for Kapha, but sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds may be used to add crunch.
Fresh mint, oregano, parsley, and neem leaves are herbs which can enhance recipes appropriate for the Kapha dosha.
Through researching the best foods for each body type and incorporating them into delicious recipes, one can keep the body working at its best. The following pages will explore more specific recipe ideas for each type to help you get started on the road to better health.