Fire and water mahabhuta’s combine to form the Pitta dosha. Pittā is translated as fire. It is the energy of heat and the principle of transformation. Pittā is the governing factor behind all the biochemical changes that take place within our bodies, regulating digestion, absorption, assimilation and body temperature. Pittā regulates body temperature through the chemical transformation of food into energy. This transformative process releases heat, which helps maintain our body temperature. The energy produced through the metabolism of food provides us with vitality and sustains all the processes required for life. Pittā promotes intelligence, understanding, courage, valor and is crucial in learning. Pittā in its normal state, attends to digestion, maintenance of body temperature, vision, producing hunger, thirst, appetite, complexion, intelligence and softness of the body. Out-of-balance Pittā may arouse fiery emotions such as frustration, anger, hatred, criticism, and jealousy.


Pittām sasnehatiksnosnam laghu vistram saram dravam ||A.H. 11|| Pittā is slightly oily/unctuous, sharp, piercing or the one entering into deep tissues, hot, light, pungent, fluid and liquid.

  • Oily – In order to burn and sustain fire, oil is required as fuel. It also manifests as soft, oily skin and hair.
  • Sharp – If fire or a flame is observed closely it has sharp edges. In our bodies Pittā represents this sharpness in the form of sharp teeth, distinct eyes, pointed nose, tapping chin, heart shaped face, acute hunger, quickness of anger and irritability.
  • Piercing – Fire and water being the primary forming Pancha Mahabhuta of Pittā, these two have the tendency of piercing or entering into deep tissues. In our body this is represented by the penetration of heat to the core.
  • Hot – Heat is the most important quality of the fire element that impacts all functions in our body associated with heat for e.g. strong appetite and digestive fire, higher body temperature, excessive perspiration, intolerance to heat
  • Light – Fire is the main Mahabhuta of Pittā. Fire or its flame always flows upwards and that’s because it has a lightness quality. Light/medium body frame is a major quality.
  •  Pungency – Due to the sharpness quality of fire associated with its oiliness, it projects a strong odour. This is generally observed in the sweat, breath, urine etc.
  • Liquid – Heat or fire is not always in form of a flame, it can be steam, lava etc. due to the liquid property of fire element. This allows the heat and other aspects of fire reach deep in the body allowing protection in cold winter season and intolerance to summer heat.
  • Fluid – Fire and water, unless contained are mobile and they flow in a certain direction. Oil flows and so does Pittā.

Locations of Pittā:-

In the mid region of the body – the abdomen, including all the organs involved in metabolism, digestion and energy production, Pittā Dosha is present.
The most important location of Pittā is the Naabhi, Amaashya and Grahani i.e. the stomach, small intestine, predominantly duodenum and umbilicus, where majority of the metabolic and digestive activities take place.

Other organs where Pittā functions are – Sweat (to assist in body temperature regulation and as a detoxifier), Lasika (lymph), Rudhira (Blood as blood cells and hemoglobin etc.), Rasa (Plasma or the liquid part of the blood), Drik (in the eyes assisting in vision), Sparshanam (in the skin as the glands which maintain the softness/oiliness, luster and complexion along with helping in perceiving varying temperatures).

Effects of increased Pittā

Elevated body temperature, fever sensation.
Increased sweating, sweating with prominent smell/odor.
Excessive hunger and thirst, the person can eat every 2 hourly and still not be satiated.
Feeling of burning sensations in the body either external in the skin along with rash. and redness for e.g. urticarial reactions or internally in the digestive area like acidity, reflux, gastric ulcers.
Increased Pittā in the liver, spleen, small intestinal region can cause symptoms of jaundice like yellow discoloration of urine, skin, eye and stools. It can furthermore manifest into anemic conditions.

Effects of decreased Pittā

Decreased Pittā can lead to loss of appetite. Digestive strength gets affected and becomes weak leading to digestive disorders.
Body temperature is not well regulated and decreases, leading to impaired immunity.
Feeling of cold sensation/coldness due to reduced circulation of heat and nourishment.
Lack of skin complexion and luster, making the person look pale.
Disturbed thought process, memory and also intelligence.

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