- Wake before 7am, sleep before 10pm—Kaphas need less sleep but tend to sleep more! If awake between 3 and 6, this is the best time to meditate and exercise. Engage in vigorous exercise like the stronger yoga asanas, jogging if appropriate, sweat, sweat, sweat!! Of all the doshas, you can take the most.
- Use a body brush or loofah to exfoliate your skin vigorously
- Implement Abyangha—self massage. You may not need oil if your skin is very oily—some Kapha-Pitta types. If you are more dry, use a small amount of the warming oil (click here on Abyangha instruction if needed)
- Step into hot bath or shower with strong water flow, or even sauna to promote sweating.Vigorously dry yourself, stimulating blood flow
- Try not to eat breakfast before 10am. Try starting with a liver flush: juice of one lemon, 1 tbs. Olive Oil, ½ apple or pear, blend and drink. Add a dash of long pepper or cayenne if desired.
- Cleanse the teeth with spicy paste, brush the coating off the tongue or use scraper
- Dress in colors that stimulate Kapha mind: yellow, brown and red
According to Ayurvedic doctors, internal cleansing is an essential step in getting toxins out of the body. Liver and intestinal cleansing periodically is essential. Please do not do a cleanse if you have a weak liver or colon. It is best to consult your physician if you have any health conditions before starting a cleanse. Here are cleansing plans you may want to try, click the tab that matches your DOMINANT Dosha:
Cleansing for the Kapha Dominant Constitution
By Amber Vitse, Ayurvedic Practitioner
(Editor’s Note: If you do not know your constitution, also known as your Dosha, take the test by clicking here).
Taking your herbs:
Triphala: A balanced Kapha should have one very large bowel movement at about the same time every day. If you are skipping days, or not having adequate bowel movements, Triphala can be used at night before bed: 2 capsules at once with warmed goat’s milk or spicy tea like a Yogi herbal chai or ginger. Drink plenty of fluids—water or herbal tea. Do not start the liver cleansers if your bowels are not moving regularly. Remain on the Triphala throughout the cleanse if you continue to have difficulties with sluggish bowels, hard faeces or difficult movements, or skipping days.
Phyllanthus: Start with 2 capsules in the morning with the liver flush or with tea. If feeling well, increase to 2 at night as well. If you are a sturdy person, not much bothers you, add 2 more between 2-4pm. If you are a sensitive person, keep the dose lower. If you have to limit it to once a day, taking it at night allows it to facilitate liver cleansing while you are sleeping—when the liver does most of its work and the body is fasting. After 2 weeks, move on to the Picrorrhiza.
Picrorrhiza: Start in the same way, but take it as a food. Use the same tea, add a bit of raw honey, and a splash of goat’s milk if you want. These carry it into the tissues. This herb is a protector and rebuilder of liver tissue. You can work up to taking 2-3 capsules with each of 3 meals per day. Do this for 2 weeks, or continue for a month if you’d like.
Foods during a cleanse
You can tolerate the most food reduction.
Kichadi or Kichari is your best cleansing food while remaining nourished—Blend of white Basmati Rice for Pitta, Mung Bean, and spices—recipe is here. Use a small amount several times a day, heaped with steamed vegetables and the stronger spices.
Seasonal Fruits: Fresh apples and pears, kiwi, persimmon, pomegranate—avoid the sweeter fruits. Spring is a good time of year to use “stored fruits” like figs, prunes raisins, or apricots in very small amounts (remember each dried fruit represents a whole raw fruit) cut up to flavor your dishes or as a snack.
Seasonal Vegetables—lightly steamed or raw: Asparagus, artichokes, bitter melon, bok choy, tatsoi, beets, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, celery, chilies, green and red peppers, green salads-especially mixed field greens and arugula, kale, chard, collards, turnip and beet greens, mustard greens, raw onions, radishes, spinach, sprouts. In Spring, go for as much raw as possible: asparagus, green salads-especially mixed field greens- new spring greens like dandelion, arugula, kale, chard, collards, turnip and beet greens, mustard greens, green onions, spinach, and sprouts.
Grains: For the astringent taste, use whole grain buckwheat, white or brown basmati, or roasted quinoa or amaranth.
Legumes: Also astringent, all legumes or beans are good for you right now except for tofu, chickpeas, and hummus of chickpeas.
Animal Products: If you must have animal flesh, try freshwater fish and game meats like venison, pheasant, or rabbit.
Dairy Products: Dairy is usually contraindicated during a cleanse. A bit of ghee for cooking and goats milk in moderation if you are accustomed to it can help with carrying the herbs into the tissues.
Oils: Ghee is the optimum for oleation of tissues for cleansing. But, Kapha does not need much right now.
Nuts and Seeds: Stick with seeds: pumpkin, flax, and sunflower. If they are a main source of protein for you, sprout them first by soaking overnight in water then laying out to sprout 1-2 days.
Sweeteners: Only use raw honey, and only when preparing goat’s milk or tea to take with the herbs.
Beverages: Room temperature water, herbal teas of the especially spicy kind.