Pitta dosha is like the fiery sun, giving off heat and enabling change. It is the energy behind all transformation in our body, including digestion and temperature regulation. It also provides us with discrimination and clear vision.
Qualities: Oily, sharp, hot, light, acidic, spreading, liquid.
Physical characteristics of Pitta dosha:
A Pitta person will generally be of medium height and build with strong muscles. They usually have sharp eyes or features, and warm, pink skin. They are often redheads and may have receding hairlines or early greying. Their metabolism is strong. A Pitta will thrive in cooler climates.
Mental/Emotional characteristics of Pitta dosha:
Just like a fire, a Pitta person can be both bright and heated. They are usually precise, clear speakers and very orderly and well planned thinkers. They are intelligent and determined; many good leaders are Pitta people. Pittas have a stubborn mind, difficult to change but usually clear in the present moment. However, they tend to get irritable or angry quickly, especially when things don’t go their way.
Signs of Pitta Imbalance:
- Oily skin or acne.
- Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.
- Heartburn, acid reflux, or ulcers.
- Sensitivity to heat and extreme thirst.
- Fevers, inflammations, and infections.
- Excessive sweating and strong body odor.
- Short temper or irritability.
Causes of Pitta Imbalance:
- Summer (hot weather).
- A diet too high in sour, salty, or spicy food.
- Hunger, waiting too long between meals.
- Smoking, alcohol, and drugs (pharmaceuticals or others).
- Extreme heating of the body such as hot tubs, saunas, or long periods of high intensity exercise.
- Excessive competition, pressure, or mental stimulation.
Tips for balancing Pitta:
Pitta people (or anyone experiencing a Pitta imbalance) should always seek foods and practices that are calming and cooling to balance out their high levels of heat. It is recommended to avoid spicy, sour, or very salty foods and instead choose foods that are sweet and astringent. Often Pittas will do better when avoiding vegetables in the nighshade family (tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, potatoes) and red meat, instead favoring green leafy veggies, chicken or fish, and typically cooling foods like cucumber, melon, and cilantro. Dairy products help cool a Pitta down and ghee and coconut oil are good, non heat inducing fats.
While Pittas usually have the strength and motivation for strong exercise, it is important to be mindful about how hard they are working their bodies and building excess heat. Swimming is a great choice for a Pitta, as are many styles of yoga. Avoid strong physical activity during the hottest hours of the day. Pittas can be rather impatient and short tempered, especially when hungry, as they have such high metabolisms. A Pitta person should never go too long between meals and should allow themselves moments of downtime throughout the day to decompress from the pressures of daily life.
Do you think you might be a Pitta? Take my Dosha Quiz and find out!