Theory of Tridoshas

The Tridoshas or Three Bio – Energies

The Tridoshas or three Bio-Energies are the primary and essential factors of the human body that govern our entire physical structure and function of the body. These three energies are responsible for all the physiological and psychological processes within the body and mind – dynamic forces that determine growth and decay. These bio-energies are derived from the Panchmahabhutas. When two elements combine together they form a energy called dosha – which like the elements cannot be detected with our senses. These bio-energies are as follow:

1. Vata The energy symbolized by air.

2. Pitta The energy symbolized by fire.

3. Kapha The energy symbolized by water.


Most of the physical phenomena ascribed to the nervous system by modern physiology for example, can be identified with Vata. Just as the entire chemical process operating in the human body can be attributed to Pitta, including enzymes, hormones and the complete nutritional system. And the activities of the skeletal and the anabolic system, actually the entire physical volume of an organism, can be considered as Kapha.

It is important to realise that these three are forces and not substances. Kapha is not mucus; it is the force that causes mucus to arise. Similarly pitta is not bile; but that which causes bile to be produced. And they are called doshas – literally meaning `faults’ or `out of whack’- as they indicate the fault lines along which the system can become imbalanced.

It is equally important to understand that the three doshas within any person keep changing constantly, due to the doshic qualities of specific lifestyle and environment, such as time and season. And that these three are not separate energies but different aspects of the same energy, present together in an infinite variety of combinations, wherein their qualities overlap and interrelate.

Dosha sub type & their features

Each of the three doshas have sub-classification and their respective features are as indicated below :

Vata Doshas


Doshas Site Normal function Ailments caused by its vitiation
Prana Heart Breathing &swallowing of food. Hiccups, Bronchitis, Asthma,
Udana Throat Speech and voice Various diseases of eye& ENT.
Samana Stomach Digestion, assimilation. Indigestion, Defective assimilation.
Apana Colon Excretion Diseases pelvic organs, Diabetes
Vyana Whole body Circulation of blood Impairment of circulation.

Pitta Doshas


Doshas Site Normal function Ailments caused by its vitiation
Pachaka Stomach Digestion Indigestion, Anorexia
Ranjaka Liver & spleen Blood Function Anemia, Jaundice Hepatitis
Sadhaka Heart Memory & mental functions. Psychic disturbances
Alochaka Eyes Vision Impairment of vision
Bhrajaka Skin Complexion of the skin Skin diseases.

Kapha Doshas


Doshas Site Normal function Ailments caused by its vitiation
Kledaka Stomach Digestion. Impairment of digestion
Avalambaka Heart Energy in limbs Laziness
Bodhaka Tongue Perception of taste. Impairment of digestion
Tarpaka Brain Nourishment nervous system Loss of memory
Shlesshaka Joints Lubrication of joints Impairment of function of joints.

The quality and the relative balance of these Doshas or energies determine health and disease. When these energies act harmoniously, the functions of digestion, absorption and elimination create health and imbalance between Vata, Pitta and Kapha in simply understood as disease.