Abhyanga, keeping warm and moist

/ October 19, 2014/ Holistic Nutrition/ 0 comments

Vata is dry and cold so a warm oily self-massage is ideal to balance this dosha, especially now in the fall (vata season). Take some time to show yourself some self-love!


Abhyanga is an ayurvedic massage that helps to promote good circulation in the morning and restful sleep at night. Among its other benefits, you will find that it stimulates the internal organs of your body, it helps to detoxify by moving the lymph, increases stamina, and calms the nerves.

The time of the day does not matter but consistency does… so you need to do it every day to receive optimal benefits. You will soon notice increased health and vitality.

Sesame oil is recommended for this massage because it helps balance all the doshas. However, if you are experiencing an imbalance of your dosha, you might want to use an oil specific for your dosha:

  • Sesame or almond oil for Vata
  • Coconut oil or cocoa butter for Pitta
  • Sunflower or safflower for Kapha

How to do Abhyanga

  • Warm the oil a little more than skin temperature.Dip a small bottle containing the oil into a bow with hot water.
  • Use circular motion on your joints and long up-and-down strokes in your limbs.
  • Start the massage in the head using a circular clockwise motion. Then massage the face and the ears. Massaging the ears is excellent for balancing vata. Avoid areas prone to breakouts.
  • Continue with the neck, shoulders, and arms. Then glently massage your chest and stomach. Do your best to massage your back without straining. Finish with legs, knees, and ankles.
  • Leave for 20 minutes. If you can’t, best to hav have the massage and leave for a few minutes than no massage at all.

If you need an introduction to the ayurvedic concepts discussed in this topic, read the ayurvedic lowdown for spring. Also, you can find more information and tests to determine your dosha constitution and your dosha present state in the Ayurvedic Institute website.

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