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Prakriti and Vikriti


Two essential concepts are important to deepen for a good understanding of health in Ayurveda: the natural constitution of the individual, called Prakriti, and the factors of health imbalances, called Vikriti.



Prakriti is a Sanskrit term meaning “innate constitution” or “primordial nature”. This constitution is considered the individual's zone of balance; it is in this zone that the individual feels in good shape physically and psychologically.

Prakriti is shaped by the three fundamental doshas: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. These biological functions are present in proportions unique to each individual. It is our natural constitution, which serves as a blueprint for overall health and well-being.

Discovering your unique combination of doshas and understanding your natural constitution helps you identify your natural physical and psycho-emotional strengths. This allows you to make informed decisions about your lifestyle, diet, exercise and other factors to be healthy.

For example, it is best for someone with a dominant Vata constitution to eat a diet rich in protein and healthy fats to balance the dry and cold qualities of Vata.

This ordered and unique combination of doshas constitutes a state of balance and will be the same for all of existence. By understanding one's Prakriti, one can gain insight into one's strengths and tendencies, as well as inherent predispositions to certain health issues. It is from Prakriti that the prevention aspects of personalized health can be advanced.

Various criteria help determine Prakriti: morphology, personality traits, sleep and digestion tendencies, emotional inclinations…
(see the page dedicated to Doshas)

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Vikriti, in contrast, refers to the “current state” or “state of imbalance” of the doshas. Unlike Prakriti, Vikriti constantly varies over time, even from moment to moment.

The states of the doshas, ​​in quantities and qualities, are influenced by factors such as lifestyle, diet, emotions, trauma and environment. Each factor is composed of its own dominant nature and doshas, Vata, Pitta or Kapha. This factor is added to the quantity and quality already existing in the body. This can lead to a disruption of homeostasis and therefore an imbalance. If this imbalance persists over time, it can develop into a pathology.


The importance of Doshas

Observing the distribution of doshas and their proportions can indicate the state of balance or imbalance of each.
The distinction between Prakriti and Vikriti is that the latter is considered a deviation. In other words, Vikriti represents a state of imbalance of the doshas in relation to the natural and balanced state of Prakriti.

For example, a person with a Vata-dominant Prakriti may develop a Pitta-dominated Vikriti due to an excess of hot, spicy foods, or being exposed to too much sun or heat…. This imbalance can lead to symptoms such as heartburn, hives, or increased irritability.


Find balance

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Prakriti is therefore the beacon indicating the direction, the original balance.

To establish a health check, around ten points are observed to precisely determine Prakriti and Vikriti: tongue, eyes, pulse, skin, hair, nails, breathing, voice, stools and urine. The cross-section of observations made for each of these areas provides the distributions of doshas showing where the natural balance is located and where the presence of imbalances is.


Once Prakriti and the part of Vikriti at fault in the imbalances are determined, then the implementation of diets, physical exercises, food supplements and personalized care can be recommended for balanced health.

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