Since ancient times, oils have been used as the fundamental therapeutic and beautifying ingredients in Ayurveda. Literally, oil means ‘sneha’ (love) in Sanskrit, defining its unique place in Ayurvedic medicine as the ultimate nourisher. It penetrates deep down into the body tissues with its soothing, calming and healing nature.
Ayurvedic oils are used for both nutritional as well as therapeutical benefits. However, these benefits depend on the properties of the oils, its method of application and other ingredients mixed with it. Besides, it also depends on whether it is applied to the body internally or externally. Furthermore, oils have the capability to perfectly assimilate the properties of other oily substances or herbs and treat the body with the kind of nourishment required in specific health conditions. Hence, they are known as the ‘assimilitors.’
According to the Ayurvedic manuscript ‘Charak Samhita’, oils relieve Vata but do not aggravate Kapha as they are hot in nature.
Ayurveda uses oils in their purest form, as ingredients incorporated in decoctions or in pastes of herbs. Oils are traditionally used for various purposes including cooking, massage, Kayaseka (oil bathing), gargling, Basti (colon nourishment), and Nasya (nasal passage nourishment).
There are two major categories of oils in Ayurveda which are as follows:
- Base Oil – These are pure, organic, cold pressed, whole oils that resemble the properties of the seeds they are extracted from. Eg: Sesame, coconut, mustard etc.
- Herbal Oil – These oils are prepared in combination with herbs in the form of decoction or pastes.
The Most Popular Base Oils Used As Medicines
- Sesame Oil (Til Oil)
Apart from its popular use in cooking, sesame oil is used for multiple health benefits. Due to its unique properties, the oil has the capability to penetrate and nourish even the most delicate channels of the body. Plus, it also has the natural tendency of spreading quickly to all the parts of the body while binding the stools and decreasing the frequency of urine.
Sesame oil is rich in Vitamin E, B complex, and minerals like calcium, phosphorous and magnesium that enhance hair growth, and deeply nourish and strengthen the hair roots. It is a good source of nutrients such as flavonoids, dietary fibre and other vitamins that help improve vision and treat blurred vision and dry eyes. Due to its hot potency, it is used in Abhyanga or self-massage that aids in lubricating the muscles and tissues while bestowing the body and mind with vitality, vigour and tranquillity.
- Mustard Oil (Sarson Oil)
Mustard oil has significant penetrating nature that helps cure skin problems such as rashes, itching, ulcers and more. Although mustard oil can pacify Kapha and Vata Dosha, it can vitiate the blood of people with Pitta constitution.
Mustard oil is antibacterial and antifungal in nature and contains omega-3 fatty acids as a fundamental constituent. As a result, oil is excellent in stimulating blood circulation in the scalp which enhances healthy hair growth while prevents hair loss. Mustard oil is also used for Abhyanga just as the sesame oil.
- Coconut Oil (Nariyal Tel)
For centuries, coconut oil has been used for hair health due to its unique nourishing and rejuvenating properties. Due to its coolant property, the oil pacifies both Pitta and Vata Dosha and hence is a great choice to be used in summers. Coconut oil wonderfully penetrates into the hair follicles and helps in treating dandruff, lice, insect bites while promoting scalp health.
Additionally, coconut oil is also used in treating certain skin problems and teeth problems.
- Soybean Oil (Soyabean Oil)
Soybeans are the ultimate source of protein, especially for the vegetarians. You can find similar properties in its oil too. Apart from its widespread use in cooking, it is also used in cosmetics, skin care products, shampoos, lubricants, foods and beverages.
Soybean oil has the capability to develop amino acids and Keratin-like molecules in hair fibres which helps in treating hair problems such as balding and hair fall. While bestowing strength to the hair follicles it also adds shine to the hair.
The Use Of Base Oils In Producing Medicines – By Vatson Remedies
Though Base oils are used in their pure form in cooking, they are widely used in manufacturing therapeutical products. Vatson Remedies is one such GMP-certified pharmaceutical company and herbal healthcare company that is involved in producing Ayurvedic medicines.
We go deep down in our research of Ayurvedic ingredients and use them in the most effective ways so as to deliver the goodness of nature in the form of herbal medicines.
Here is a list of three products in which we use the base oils in right combination with other herbs:
- Panvit Pain Oil – Mustard oil, Til Oil
- Vatcare Hair Oil – Til Oil, Coconut Oil, Soyabean Oil, Mustard Oil
- Earvat Eye Drop – Til Oil