Vata Dosha:

The dominant feature of vata is unpredictability. Vata people are changeable by nature and, as their physical and mental energy usually comes in bursts, they often lack the staying power to finish what they start. The true vata type has a typically thin physique with narrow hips and shoulders. They can be exceptionally tall (lanky) or very short and wispy (waif like). Vata's are extremely sensitive to change in their environment, they have quick (acute) responses to sound and dislike loud noise. They have a vivacious, vibrant, excitable, unpredictable, imaginative and talkative personality.
Most vata people are prone to worry and can easily suffer from insomnia as a result of mental restlessness. Vata's most important function is to control the central nervous system. Tremors (shaking) or any nervous jittery movements of the body are indications of a disturbed (excess) vata. Unchecked vata imbalance can result in nervous disorders ranging from anxiety and depression to more serious mental disorders.
Vata is known as the king of the dosha's, because when in balance, it leads the other dosha's into balance as well.

Characteristics of Vata:

Light, thinner build
Performs activity quickly
Tendency to dry skin
Aversion to cold weather
Irregular hunger and digestion
Tendency towards worry
Tendency towards constipation
Light restless sleep
Quick to grasp new information
Quick to forget

Balanced Vata:
Unbalanced Vata
Aggravates Vata:
Good tissues
Sound sleep
Proper elimination
Clear, alert mind
Dryness of skin
Weight loss
Worried mind
Excessive exercise
Excessive travel
Insufficient sleep
Weight loss
Fear or grief
Wrong food/drink
Vata season

Foods that balance vata:


Foods that aggravate vata:


Vata Pacifying Diet - When this dosha is out of balance and during vata season.
(also recommended for adverse Saturn transit)

Favor warm, cooked foods and hot beverages. Soft and unctuous foods, such as pasta, cooked cereals and soups should be favored over dry and crunchy foods. Raw vegetables should be avoided except in small amounts. Avoid cold drinks and frozen desserts (such as ice cream, popsicles, frozen yogurt, etc.)  

Favor the following foods
GENERAL: Sufficient quantity, adequate amount of oil, warm foods and drinks. Have more sweet, sour and salty tasting foods.

GRAINS: Wheat products, rice, cooked oatmeal, bulgar wheat, cous-cous, quinoa.

LEGUMES: Yellow split mung beans (green skin removed), whole mung bean soup, red lentils.

VEGETABLES: Zucchini, asparagus, carrot, beets, sweet potatoes, tomato, artichokes, cucumber, yellow squash, okra, tender eggplant, fennel, spinach in small amounts. All should be cooked.

DAIRY: Milk (boiled and served hot), butter, ghee, cream, yogurt (only if freshly made at home), soft, non-aged cheeses (such as ricotta, cottage cheese, and cream cheese,) panir (homemade cheese from milk),  sour cream.

SWEETENERS: Whole, natural cane sugar (in small amounts), raw honey, date sugar,

OILS: All (organic olive oil preferred.) Ghee.

NUTS & SEEDS: All nuts and seeds except peanuts. Soak the nuts in water to soften.

SPICES: Cumin, ginger, mustard seeds, celery seeds, fenugreek, hing (asafoetida), cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, anise, fennel, black pepper (small amounts), salt, lemon juice, tamarind. All others in small amounts.       

FRUITS: All ripe, sweet, and juicy fruits. Dried fruit is better soaked in water before eating.  Sweet grapes, banana, melons, plums, cherries, kiwi, peach, apricot, mango, papaya, pomegranate, sweet pineapples, avocado, sweet oranges, grapefruit, raisins, dates, prunes, and figs.  Apples and pears only if sweet and juicy.    

Reduce the Following Foods
GENERAL: Light, dry, and crunchy foods. Cold foods and drinks. Pungent (hot, spicy), bitter and astringent tastes.

GRAINS: Barley, corn, millet, rye, buckwheat, raw oats.

LEGUMES: All except yellow mung beans and red lentils.

VEGETABLES: Green leafy vegetables, peas, potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, celery, orange pumpkin and squash, sprouts, mature eggplant, onion,  radish, and raw vegetables.

FRUITS: Unripe fruits, Guava, cranberries, persimmon.

SPICES: Avoid cayenne, chili peppers and other very hot spices