Monday, June 3, 2013

Long Awaited Post, Excuses, and Abhyanga

I must admit that in the midst of studying and clinicals and beginning to move toward setting up my practice (not to mention the 'real' job), I have been considering letting the blog go by the wayside.  I think the next move is going to be setting up a WebSite and I am afraid that I just can't do it all.  But I was inspired last night by an e-mail and so am going to try to continue to keep up the Blog and hope that I continue to inspire people.

I seem to be spreading my love of oils around and so thought that I would just post a bit about using oils and a few of my personal favorites.

An abhyanga is the sanskrit word used for the daily self massage with oil that is a bit of Self Love.  One should take their time when massaging the oil into the skin and enjoy the feel as the skin absorbs the much needed attention.   I personally try for a nice good massage (honestly) about once a month and then I take a nice warm bath, taking time for myself to relax.  But I slather oil on daily and I no longer use any moisturizers but my oils.  My personal favorite face oil is 100 churned ghee. I know, you're saying, "What, butter?  On your face?"  But the process of churning the ghee actually changes the chemical composition of the ghee until it becomes this beautiful fluffy white cream that is wonderful for the skin.

A simple way to really get the oil into your body is to use it every day.  Before you shower, slather oil on your skin using long strokes on the long bones and circular motions on the joints.  Try to wait a few minutes to let the oil begin to soak in and then the heat of the shower will help the rest of the oil penetrate the skin.  If you're comfortable, don't use soap except on those needed places; the oils are cleansing enough.  At the end of your shower, you can apply another thin layer of oil on as your moisturizer.

There might be those of you worried about acne or excess clogging of pores, but a nice oil won't clog the pores.  And often, the acne is the body reacting to the skin being too dry.  So try it.  See what happens.

There are many different kinds of oils and if you know your personal constitution you can simply pick a Vata, Pitta, or Kapha oil to use.  If you want to keep it even more simple, you can use sesame oil in the winter--a nice good quality cold pressed oil and use coconut oil in the summer (and when Pitta is high)--the coconut oil is cooling and good for the sun touched skin (and burns).  I buy most of my oils from Banyan Botanicals, but you can get oils at the grocery store in a pinch--just make sure it's good quality, cold pressed, and preferably organic.

My personal favorite right now is Mahanarayan oil which is super nourishing to the bones and joints, especially if Vata induced.  It's really great for anyone with or at risk of osteoporosis or other bone complaints.  As a runner, I am always recommending this oil to all my achy and sore buddies.

My other favorite oil right now is Neem oil: for the tick bites, the bug bites, the cuts, the scratches, the itchies...any of the skin irritations.  I found it to be great on cleansing and healing the tick bite.  It's cleansing and anti everything: bacterial, fungal, viral, septic, and the rest.

Start experimenting!  Enjoy!  Fall in Love with Oils.

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