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Living in harmony
The ancient Indian philosophy ayurveda teaches that all things in nature are composed of five elements: earth, water, fire, air and ether. These elements combine in various permutations to form the three doshas: vata (air and ether), pitta (fire and water) and kapha (earth and water). Practitioners believe each person has a unique balance of the three doshas, called their prakruti.
At Asheville Ayurveda, specialist Greta Kent-Stoll assesses each client’s physical constitution and physiological, psychological and emotional habits. She also looks at the person’s appetite and metabolism, ability to gain and lose weight, ideal number of meals per day and reaction to missing a meal.
Kent-Stoll says one or two of the doshas usually predominate in each person and natural tendencies reinforce these, which can lead to problems. “If we are eating foods and living in such a way that simply exaggerates who we are, and we keep doing that day after day over time, then that will eventually create some kind of imbalance,” she says.