Pitta (Fire) Herbs (hot, dry, light)

The pitta dosha is said to be made up of the fire and water elements. Fire is more predominant, and those people with a predominant pitta nature have many of the qualities of fire within them. Pitta tends to hot, sharp, and penetrating. It is also somewhat volatile and oily. The oily nature of Pitta is related to the secondary component of water. People with a Pitta nature reflect these qualities. They tend to feel warm and have somewhat oily skin, penetrating eyes, and sharp features. They tend to have moderate weights and good musculature. When out of balance they tend toward diarrhea, infections, skin rashes and weakness in the liver, spleen, and blood.
These qualities also reflect in their personalities. Pitta people tend to be highly focused, competitive, capable, courageous, energetic and clear communicators who get right to the point. They like to solve problems and when under stress they dig in their heels. They can however also become overly intense and speak with a sharp tongue. They make great friends but feared enemies. Emotionally they are challenged by the heated emotions of anger, resentment and jealousy.

In order to bring balance to pitta, programs are designed to emphasize the opposing qualities of coolness, heaviness (nourishing) and dryness. Cool spices like fennel are recommended in the diet along with foods such as raw vegetables, cooked rice, and wheat, as well as most beans. Sweet herbs like shatavari are used to nourish the body while bitters like dandelion root temper the fire. A Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist puts together programs that not only include foods and herbs but also aromas, colors, massage, detoxification, yoga, and meditation.

The qualities of pitta are: hot, pungent, oily, sharp, liquid, spreading, sour, red or yellow in color, intense, and fiery.

In the body, pitta regulates: processes related to: transformation, digestion, enzymatic changes, discernment and judgment, body temperature, visual acuity, sweat, thirst, condition of the skin, and hormonal balance.

When balanced, pitta is: passionate, focused, discerning, productive, truth-seeking, energetic, patient, driven, able to stay on task, and thrives in competition.

When out of balance, pitta is: like a forest fire burning everything in its path, inflammatory, red and irritated, angry, loud, judgmental or overly critical.

Things that throw pitta out of balance are: too much heat, excessive stimulants, direct sunlight—particularly in the eyes, overly pungent foods, alcohol, too much sour, criticism.

Bring pitta back into balance with: sweet tastes (healthy sweets), sweet scents, cool colors in the environment, water (drinking water, showering or bathing and especially swimming), early morning light, moonlight, darkness, bitter leafy greens, bitter and astringent aloe vera, astringent beans, antiinflammatory spices like turmeric, and cool peppermint.

The pitta dosha governs the eyes and eyesight, so pitta is related to sight. Wearing sunglasses on sunny days, decorating space with soothing colors and wearing cool hues can help balance fiery pitta through sight.

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