Abhyanga is an Ayurvedic procedure for massaging the entire body from head to toe with herbal oils. There are many varieties of classically prepared herbal oils that are used for balancing specific doshas and many health conditions. Traditionally, the base oil is either sesame, castor, or coconut.
Abhyanga is a part of the Dinacharya daily regimen that is explained in the classical Ayurvedic textbook on ways to maintain strong health and wellbeing. Vata is the king of the doshas and is responsible for all the body's energy, movement, and nerve impulses, which manifests as breath, circulation, elimination, and the flow of thoughts. In comparison the other two doshas, pitta and kapha have much less of an impact.
Pitta, kapha, dhatus (body tissues), malas (metabolic waste) and whatever else is present in the body is ineffective without the movement instilled by vata dosha. Vata dosha is the energy behind all movement for which the body functions.
Abhyanga is the treatment that balances vata dosha. The qualities of vata dosha are dry and active and oil is the best remedy for balancing these two qualities.
Benefits of Abhyanga
Ayurvedic Herbal Oils for Abhyangam
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The Ayurvedic text lists four types of fats with medicinal healing qualities. They are ghritam (ghee), oil (sesame), vasa (muscle), and majja (marrow). Each one has its own unique properties, however ghritam has several special qualities that are unmatched. Ghritam will maintain its own healing qualities even when combined with herbs with different qualities.