Prakruti can refer to a number of concepts in Ayurvedic Medicine though it most commonly refers to the natural constitution of an individual. The concept of constitution is integral in the use of Ayurvedic Medicine because it helps a practitioner recognize the healthy state versus a state of imbalance in the individual as well as what recommendations to offer for preventative care.
According to Ayurved, each individual has a unique constitution specific to the dominance of doshas, or biological energies, in the body. There are three doshas: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha, which are made up of space and air, fire, and water and earth, respectively. This is of significance because each of these elements has particular qualities to them. For example fire is hot, so if an individual has a Pitta-dominant prakruti, or constitution, then he/she will be more apt to have more “heat” in his or her body and have a tendency to present imbalances related to heat issues, such as acidity.
There are several different types of prakruti and beyond this many different ways in which prakruti can manifest. A trained Ayurvedic practitioner can recognize the specificity of an individual’s prakruti and the way that it is out of balance. Balance is not the same for each individual and the optimal lifestyle, diet, exercise, and therapy will change person to person. Prakruti is often also of relevance to the individual’s character and natural mental state though it is important to distinguish between prakruti of the body and prakruti of the mind, or manas prakruti. Again, there are many different types of manas prakruti, just like there are prakrutis of the body. These have an altogether different significance and are regarded separately before intertwining them with findings regarding body prakruti and imbalances.