In Ayurvedic philosophy, there are three doshas, also called humors, that govern our psychobiological functioning of the body. Vata, Pitta and Kapha doshas, are present in every cell, tissue and organ as they are a combination of the ﬁve elements. When in balance, they create health; when out of balance, they are the cause of disease. These doshas, are responsible for the huge variety of individual differences and preferences and they inﬂuence all we are and all we do, from our choices of food to our modes of relating to others.
The doshas govern the biological and psychological process of our body, mind and consciousness. They regulate the creation, maintenance and destruction of bodily tissue as well as the elimination of waste products. They even govern our emotions and metal state. When in balance, they generate understanding, compassion, love and health. When their balance is disturbed by stress, improper diet, and environmental conditions, they give rise to many disturbances such as anger, fear, anxiety, confusion, depression and disease. All five elements are present in each dosha, but the predominance of two elements create a dosha.
Pitta dosha relates to the internal fire, bile, body heat, digestive enzymes, physiochemical, biological, metabolic, and endocrine systems. It is responsible for the transformation and digestions of all aspects of the body, such as the digestion of the chyle into a protoplasmic substance like sperm and ovum. Pitta is also related to the agni- digestive fire. Pitta is made up of Tejas (fire) and apa (water). This seemingly contradictory combination of fire and water that form pitta, are actually complementary.
Pitta also exists as water or oil in the body, thus preserving the tissues from the destructive aspects of fire. Its qualities are pungent, hot, penetrating, greasy, oily, sharp, liquid, spreading and sour. Its force associated with the endocrine functions, also effect hormone levels, body temperature, visual perception, hunger, thirst, and skin quality. Primarily, Pitta resides in the eyes, blood, sweat glands, the small intestine, stomach and lymph, with its main site in the small intestine.
Mentally Pitta plays a role in understanding and in digesting the sensory impressions and emotional responses. It promotes discipline, responsibility, and joyfulness when in balance. If out of balance it creates a feeling of constantly seeking, angry and irritable emotions, obsessiveness or dull, uninterested with feelings of deep negativity.
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of Ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease.