Saturday, September 09, 2006

Pitta, the liver, anger and weight issues

I've been having revelations around my liver lately that I thought I'd share with fellow Pitta types. (I'm actually Pitta-Kapha.)

Despite not having any Kapha in my mind-body constitution, I've long struggled with weight and have a life-long history of dieting. In this past month, however, I've inadvertantly dropped several pounds without changing my lifestyle, save for one addition to my health practice: cleansing my liver. (My naturopath has put me on liver cleansing herbs, and advised several cups of dandelion tea every day plus monthly colonics.)

The liver is a filter that manages fats and toxins coming through the body; metaphysically, it is the seat of anger, and anger is a Pitta manifestation (fire). Anger (even suppressed anger or passive aggressiveness, etc), toxins (drugs, pollutants, etc), bad fats (hydrogenated, saturated, rancid, deep frying, etc), all contribute to overloading this beautiful, hard working organ. In cleansing it of toxins, it can better process fats in the body (hence the weight loss). In dealing with anger, I believe we can also cool the fiery liver to also help it function better.

In all, love your liver. Give it love, treat it well, address anger issues. Pitta is the fire of transformation, a power that we can choose to use for great creations, or for (self-) destruction.


veronika said...

That explains SO much! I guess now I know why I was such a chunky kid.

SugarBloom Cupcakes said...

I'm hanging on those words! Thank you for your intuitive and intelligent clarification.

Casa Vida Verde, Cabo Matapalo, Costa Rica said...

I love your blog! Have spent most of the last few days reading all of it! Cooking some of your banana bread now. But since I am a Pitta, it is for my staff. :) I have serious overheating issues with my liver too, it gives me severe dehydration. I have started taking Chinese herbs to cleanse and cool my liver & kidneys, what else do you recommend to cool my liver and cleanse it? I am on a alkaline diet, so my diet consists of fruits, veggies, and whole grains, no coffee or alcohol, and that helps but not enough....Love the site, do more posts!

Claudia Davila (Fran) said...

To Casa Vida Verde, thanks for your enthusiasm! Sounds like you're doing wonderfully for your body and health. The chinese herbs will be very potent and the alkaline diet is essential for cleansing the liver.

To help support your liver even more, try as I mentioned in my post to have dandelion tea every day, and if available, a monthly colonic, until you feel good inside. If you feel so inclined, try visualizations in meditation. As you meditate, picture your liver "breathing in" cool, cleansing energy, perhaps in calming light violet/blue colours, and "breathing out" toxins, anger, resentment, impurities, and whatever comes up for you as you do this. You may also want to gently place your hands over your liver while focusing on your 3rd chakra.

In terms of diet, eating Pitta-balancing foods will help enormously. Consume coconut oil, eliminate fried foods and salt and spices, have raw foods and fresh fruits, as you are already doing.

Does this help? :-)

Anonymous said...

Despite scoring as Pitta-Vata type in every ayurvedic test I took,
this article makes sense to me.

I have had a v.troubled childhood and teen years and I was chubby. Once I processed all my negative emotions in counselling (a lot of it was anger)I suddenly found it easer to lose weight ie. now I look more like a Pitta-Vata type.

Excellent article!

theforestfaery said...

This website is a godsend, thank you so much for taking the time to create this, I know it's a lot of work! I too am Pitta-Kapha and reading this particular article made me feel like you were psychically eavesdropping on me, lol. My honey and I (he's Vata-Pitta) have been feeling drawn to liver loving yoga and herbs lately and this clearly explains why, especially for me. I'm definitely bookmarking this gem of a blog. ;)

Lena said...

I'm new to your blog, am loving what I've seen so far...
To the question of liver-cleansing and following a pitta diet: I am pitta/vata but my vata is chronic and I'm doing what I can to get it back in order so following the pitta diet of raw and cold foods won't work for me right now.
Do you have any advice for me?
thank you !

Claudia said...

Hi Lena,

Chronic vata imbalance is tricky because a lot of different sources of illness can manifest as vata issues, even if they're kapha or pitta deep down. Nonetheless, I've heard that it's good to deal with the most prominent imbalances first -- in your case, the vata issues. So it would be good to eat soothing, easy to digest, well-cooked foods (do you know how to do this?).

The other part of taking care of your liver is dealing with anger issues. You could try easy meditation where you visualize soothing colours or listen to background nature sounds while resting; journal writing; quiet walks alone in nature...

In other words, healing foods that soothe Vata, and soothing mental routines that soothe Pitta. I hope this helps!

Faith's Kitchen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Faith's Kitchen said...

Fran I just stumbled upon your blog here, it is wonderful and informative without seeming overwhelming to absorb. Thank you!

I am a very dominant Pitta and my current imbalances (move to another country with small child and husband, leaving job family etc, moving 3 times before settling, major disruptions in my asana/meditation practice) have come out in many different ways, each of which I have been working to get to the root. Without getting too deep, I am extremely high in Pitta and tend to have Kapha sluggishness when imbalanced and stressed (sluggishness, exhaustion, WEIGHT GAIN). I was able to generate much more energy by practicing more Vinyasa than Grounding sequences as well as diet changes. I am still having a really difficult time addressing skin irritations that have come up since the move and have not gotten better. I use sesame oil and castor oil to cleanse and did see some results but am more interested in what the root causes of what is becoming chronic acne flare ups. Primarily in the face (cheeks chin neck and chest between my breasts). I am certain it is a combination of an irritated dominant Pitta and some blocked Chakras. This liver article really rings true to me, throughout life fear/anger and weight gain have usually come together and I recently let go of some weight, I do not want to lose stride, the stress of the move and feeling pulled in so many directions had me holding onto/gaining a bit before we settled in. I also seem to be sweating excessively without feeling hot or winded, just walking my daughter to take the metro to school I am drenched. I am now looking at changing my regular practice to an evening moon salutation instead, this is a difficult thing for me as I am a Yoga instructor and find it very important to continue to practice what I teach so I am trying to find a middle ground for this.

Do you think using Triphala and/or
Dashamula would be acceptable methods instead of a monthly colonic ? They are not as common in Spain and I am limited on funds while we are here. Your thoughts?

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