Pungent (hot, dry, light)

The pungent taste is one of dry heat and can be found in spicy foods and many herbs and spices. It balances Kapha and is of the Air and Fire element. It is hot, dry, light, sharp (penetrating) and aromatic. The pungent taste warms the body, cleanses the mouth, clarifies the sense organs, enhances other flavours, kindles the digestive fire, and improves digestion, absorption, and elimination. The pungent taste is critically important to balancing excess kapha because it is able to heat, dry and eliminate kapha from the body, eliminating ama and mucus, clearing the sinuses, breaking up clots, and supporting the elimination of excess fat.

The pungent taste is stimulating, invigorating, penetrating, and it effectively clears moisture, stagnation, and congestion.1 It also increases circulation, encourages sweating, eliminates itching, clears toxins, cleanses the blood and the muscles, reduces cholesterol, opens the internal channels, and clears blockages.
It is usually created by the presence of aromatic volatile oils, resins, and mustard glycosides that stimulate the tissues and nerve endings of the mouth with a sensation of heat

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