I get the impression that there is much suspicion about body types and how they relate to diet and exercise, and to be honest, when it comes down to the regular endomorph, mesomorph, ectomorph mullarkey, I’m inclined to share that suspicion. Ayurvedic body typing however, is an entirely different animal, and a little knowledge of it can make your quest for health and fitness so much easier…
So how to find out your Ayurvedic body type? Well, there are many ways to guess at it pretty accurately from physical characteristics, which will give an enormous head start in understanding your physiology and how it relates to food and environmental variables. You can get a very good idea from the chart in my book Pure Activity, but the most accurate way is to get a consultation with a vaidya (Ayurvedic physician).
Vaidyas are trained in the extraordinary science of pulse diagnosis (taken from three pulse points in the wrist), which will not only tell you exactly what body type you are from the ‘vata, pitta and kapha’ classifications, but will accurately describe all your present imbalances, and give detailed advice about how you can rebalance the system using a combination of diet, herbs and routine.
Now this is not just a little throwaway technique; it can be incredibly accurate about even serious conditions. Good friends of mine, and family members, have had extraordinary insights into their health from skilled vaidyas, resulting in, among other great success stories, an elderly relative being diagnosed and cured of an inoperable tumour, and a close friend being cured of colon cancer.
Such is the power of Ayurveda, so imagine how good it is at identifying your own body type, and as you use this knowledge more and more, so your intuition will develop and it will become increasingly easier to keep yourself in balance.
Whereas regular body typing can just result in lots of unnecessary rules and regulations, banned foods and inflexible advice, the Ayurvedic body typing system is very adaptable and flexible, and even takes in the world you live in, the changing seasons, one’s age and countless other factors. Its aim is not to limit you and stop you doing/eating certain things that are ‘bad’ for your body type, but to offer you a way to understand, identify and eradicate any small imbalance that might come up in the body before it develops into a full-blown illness.
It’s not there to limit you – in fact if you are healthy and well it can often be ignored – but when you notice a little discomfort or ailment of some sort, you will have the tools to get it sorted.
Ayurveda is an ancient science, developed thousands of years ago, and to this day it remains probably the most comprehensive health care system in the world. It constantly amazes me how often I hear of a new ‘breakthrough’ in modern medicine, or a new way of looking at the planet, which has been understood for centuries by the Ayurvedic experts. It must be so frustrating for them to see little parts of their knowledge uncovered, when if the said doctors and scientists just looked at Ayurveda as a whole, they would find that all the research has been done for them, and the answers have been there for a long, long time.
Originally posted 2014-02-09 11:48:28.