Ask A Practitioner: How Can I Balance High Pitta?

Join every week for a Q&A session with one of Basmati’s practitioners, Melissa Hill (FDN-P)! We know that there is a lot of confusing information out there, which can make applying health advice overwhelming. Sometimes, it’s best to ask a practitioner directly, so each week we’ll cover a common health question!
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Q. My Pitta is high. What can I do to bring it into balance? A. If you are experiencing signs and symptoms of particular doshas being too high, aggravated, or out of balance, you can begin to bring them back into balance by applying the opposite qualities. This can come in the form of food choices, herbs, lifestyle adjustments, or therapeutic treatments. If a particular dosha is disturbed for too long, it will affect the health of the dhatus (tissue layers of the body). Take steps toward proper diet, exercise, and lifestyle to bring doshas back into balance before disease sets into the body. Because each particular dosha is the product of the elements in nature, it is helpful to recognize which elements are showing up in you and how they are manifesting and expressing in you personally. Pitta is made up of the fire and water elements. It has the qualities of being hot, oily, liquid, and mobile. The peak times for Pitta are summer time and mid-day, which are the times Pitta is more likely to become disturbed. Pitta imbalances might show up as skin rashes, fever, inflammation, ulcers, irritation, anger, frustration, or jealousy. For Pitta it is especially important to choose cooling foods and practices during summer and any time Pitta is aggravated. Pitta can be kept in balance by including more things with the opposite qualities and avoiding things with qualities that fuel Pitta’s fire. Balancing Pitta To calm down aggravated Pitta, it is important to keep your body cool, avoiding excess heat and humidity. Avoid spicy foods, fried foods, excess oils, caffeine, alcohol, and red meat, as these are all heating. Instead, include more fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet. Foods with the sweet taste, bitter taste, and astringent taste help to balance the qualities of Pitta. Aloe vera juice can be a great remedy for helping the liver and digestive system shed some excess heat. Breathing techniques like left nostril breathing and sheetali pranayama are great for cooling down your system. Getting outside for fresh air if it is not too hot outside can also help to cool you down. It is also important to make sure you have a healthy way to express your emotions and refrain from repressing your anger and frustrations. If you are already doing these things, and your imbalance hasn’t resolved, you can look deeper into reasons behind kapha getting out of balance in your body in the first place. For any dosha to get aggravated, there had to first be an accumulation of toxins in your system that built up then dispersed into what you are now experiencing as your symptoms. Working to reduce the overall toxic load on your body can be beneficial. There are many ways to facilitate detox of your body and with specific foods, herbs, modalities, and panchakarma with the help of a practitioner.