Understanding Pitta Dosha


Let’s explore pitta dosha today as we are in the midst of summer, season of pitta dosha. The mahabhutas (great elements) that comprise pitta dosha are fire and water.  In order to understand pitta dosha, think of the gunas (qualities) of fire and water.  The gunas of pitta are light, hot, sharp, liquid, spreading, oily, red, sour, and has a fleshy smell. The main site of pitta dosha is the small intestine / naval.  The sub-sites are the eyes, sweat glands, gastric juices of the stomach, the liver and spleen, the blood, and the sebaceous glands under the skin, and the hair follicle. Pitta is closely related to agni, the transformative process behind all metabolic activity in the body as well as the fire of intelligence.  Pitta people are bright, brilliant, driven people who understand things easily.  An out of balance pitta person may become angry, aggressive, or irritable.  Pitta gives the skin and hair its luster and color and also maintains body temperature.

Understanding the gunas and the sites of pitta dosha will help us in knowing the common signs and symptoms of an imbalance of pitta dosha.  Most skin disorders such as rash, hives, and urticaria are caused by an imbalance of pitta.  An undue production of oily pitta secretions at the hair follicle can cause the hair to fall out.  That is why some pitta people are balding. If the fire of intelligence burns so brightly in the eyes, a pitta person may require glasses.  Pitta people are prone to heartburn and acid indigestion due to an excess of pittagenic liquids in the stomach.

According to Ayurveda, like increases like.  Therefore, pitta dosha becomes aggravated in the summer time from the heat of the sun. A person who works in a hot environment or under the hot sun is prone to pitta type disorders.  Eating spicy, oily, fried foods is a sure way to aggravate pitta dosha.  Pitta people enjoy success and being told “yes.” That is why, in order to avoid aggravating our pitta partners, we should always agree them and tell them yes.

Remember that every dosha, when IN balance creates harmony and helps to maintain homeostasis in our bodies.  When OUT of balance, they create symptoms that eventually lead to disease.  That is why it is so important to notice our own doshic tendencies and properly manage them in a timely manner before they lead to serious imbalances.  Stay tuned for our next post about pitta disease pathology and managing pitta dosha.