Phases of life
Time stands for movement and change and greatly affects the way you feel, behave and how your body functions. The days, seasons and also your life follow a certain natural rhythm. According to Ayurveda, this rhythm influences how you feel physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
The phases of life according to ayurveda
Your body follows a certain rhythm in life. Children live in the Kapha phase, at age 18 we cross over to the Pitta phase and menopause marks the beginning of the Vata phase. By understanding this rhythm and adapting your lifestyle, you give your body a helping hand. Each phase has its own particular impact, emotionally as well as physically.
The Kapha period is characterised by growth, from birth until about the age of 18. During this time, the body is formed. Bones and muscles grow, hormones and other body processes develop. This means that during this time, more sleep is required than later in life. Binge eating may occur from time to time, as well as a craving for very unusual things, which can lead to wrong eating habits and overweight in young adults. Teenagers who get out of balance may also suffer from acne. Healthy eating and sleeping patterns that are developed during this time are the basis for a healthy lifestyle later in life.
The Pitta life phase lasts from young adulthood until the age of 45-50 and is the summer season of your body. During this time you have a lot of energy and you build a life for yourself. You use the energy to study, find a job and maybe a life partner and children. You are driven to get things done and your body and mind are helping you with that. It seems as though irregular living, food and hard work don't have much impact. Yet, as you grow older, you will start feeling the effects. Perhaps you gain weight, your sleep gets disturbed, you become overworked or even ill. Without necessarily being aware of it, you are laying the foundation for your health in the next stage of your life. Therefor, it is wise to develop healthy habits during the Pitta stage.
The last period of your life is characterised by the qualities of Vata. Some people notice the changes already when they are around 45 years old, others start feeling much later, perhaps at age 55, that the autumn of their years has set in. Your eyesight deteriorates, hormones change, weight is gained more easily, dry skin and wrinkles make their entrance and you start to forget things more easily. These seem to be very normal signs of aging, but by adapting your life to this particular phase, it is possible to postpone them.
Would you like to know more about the way the natural clock impacts your body and mind and how to use this knowledge for your own health? Our Ayurveda specialists will be happy to share their knowledge with you during a consultation.
- Textbook of ayurveda, fundamental principles of ayurveda, volume one, Vasant D. Lad, M.A.Sc., 2002, The Ayurvedic Press, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA.
- Ayurveda, the science of self-healing, a practical guide, Vasant Lad, 2009, Lotus Press.
- Change your schedule, change your life, dr. Suhas Kshirsagar, 2018, Harper Wave.
- Ayurvedic healing, a comprehensive guide. Dr. David Frawley, 2013, Lotus Press.
- Idiot’s Guides – Ayurveda. Sahara Rose Ketabi, 2017, DK Publishing.
By Daphne Beek
The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease. If you have any serious acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained health professional. If you are seeking the advice of a trained ayurvedic expert, call or email Sri Sri Ayurveda. Check with your doctor before taking herbs, herbal food supplements or using essential oils when pregnant or nursing, or by young children.