The Strength Factor
By now we all know that the cause of all the bodily diseases is the disturbance of the equilibrium of doshas. Vat which is the most dominant and important constitutes the very life of a being, for it is responsible for all activities of the body. Pitt helps in digestion and metabolism and kaph is the promoter of strength in the form of ojas. We will discuss later what ojas is when we discuss tissue elements of the body. For the moment we can understand kaph as something that which binds the body together, also known as sleshma. Whiteness, coolness, stability, viscosity, heaviness, unctuousness, sliminess, numbness, obstruction, sweetness and delay in manifestation are some of its qualities. Chest, neck head, joints and stomach are the points where sleshma is generally found.
It is almost impossible to maintain an equilibrium at all points of time in the body as the doshas keep increasing or decreasing according to the time of the day, season, and age of the person. But Kaph prakriti is supposed to be the best constitution as Kaph is the causative factor of least number of diseases in the body. A person with a Kaph prakriti has strong physical body, with strength like that of a bull, fair complexion, heavy and soft hair, having a pleasant disposition, patient, fond of sweets and is generally mentally, emotionally and financial stable. They are compared to Brahma, Shiva, devtas, horse, bull, or swan.
To cover diseases, they are caused by any kind of imbalance in the state of equilibrium of these three doshas (vat, pitt, and kaph). Hence diseases are diagnosed on the basis of the state of each of these doshas in a body and all treatments are given according to the constitution of the person and the dosha which goes into a disturbed state.
The diseases caused by kaph are treated with drugs having pungent, bitter, astringent, sharp, hot, and unctuous qualities, as characteristics of kaph are sweetness, coolness and heaviness. The main causes of disturbance of kaph are sleeping in daytime, laziness, lack of exercises, excessive intake of food that is sweet, sour, saline, oily, and heavy in nature. Kaph is seen to be more dominating in the first part of the day, childhood, winter, and immediately after eating a meal. Hence people of kaph prakriti are advised not to sleep in daytime as it results in an increase in kaph dosha.Dietary habits and daily routine or lifestyle that one follows have a great bearing on the state of any dosha. The diet and routine aid the functioning of the physical body. This routine is further subdivided into the day, the night, and the seasonal routine where certain specific useful and detrimental diets and habits are given by the ancients. Just like vat, pitt, and kaph are the pillars on which the body stands; the three supports or aids for attainment of good health are ahara, or diet, swapna, or rest/sleep and brahmacharya or control of sexual activities. Observation of these three upasthambha (supports) in moderation can help an individual in attaining not only complete health but also a longer life.