Though not proven scientifically, taking oil bath at-least twice a week (Wednesday and Saturday or any other day which is convenient) helps the body and mind remain hale and healthy. Our body is like any running machinery and oil is said to act as a form of lubrication.
Oil bath may be taken during early morning hours using cold pressed sesame oil (or Olive oil). You can also use coconut oil or castor oil. Just make sure that they are organic and cold pressed.
The oil before applying to body and head may be heated slightly for a second or two. Oil may be applied from head to toe and smooth massage can be done from head to toe thereafter. Wait for 15 to 30 minutes before taking bath. At the time of bathing one can use a organic paraben free shampoo for the head and organic bath soap for the body. If possible, you can also consider using herbal hair wash powder (instead of shampoo) for the head and body mixed with lemon juice to remove the oil.
Meditation can be practiced immediately after the oil bath and after drying your hair and body thoroughly. Peace of mind ensues at the time of meditation when practiced after oil massage and oil bath.
However, one should avoid sleeping after oil bath during day time. Oil bath also helps one get sound sleep at night so you feel rejuvenated the next morning.
When to take oil bath?
The best time to take oil bath in early in the morning. To get maximum benefits, consider taking this bath on an empty stomach. You can take this bath once a week or once every two weeks.
Steps to take oil bath
Here are the steps to take oil bath the proper way.
Step 1: Take around 100ml of oil. Heat the oil at low flame for around a minute or two. As the oil is heating you can consider adding a few black pepper seeds (5 to 8) and one crushed raw garlic.
Step 2: As the pepper starts cracking turn off the flame and let this oil mixture cool down to room temperature.
Step 3: Take some of this oil in the palm of your hands and start to apply it all over your body starting from the crown of your head to the tips of your toes. This is similar to giving yourself a self massage.
Step 4: Apply on your scalp, face, ears, in and around the neck area, on your chest area, underarms, belly and belly button, legs, hands, glutes, upper and lower back.
Step 5: Stay oiled up like this for around 10 to 15 minutes allowing your skin to absorb the oil.
Step 6: After 15 minutes, you can take a warm/hot shower to clean off the oil from your body. Consider using organic shampoo and soap to wash off the oil.
Some benefits of taking oil bath
Oil baths can help reduce inflammation in your body, improve your mood, relieve aching muscles, improve circulation, reduce blood pressure, improve skin health and induce a sense of calmness. But as mentioned before, none of these benefits have a scientific backing. You will have to try for yourself to see what kind of benefits you receive.
Some points to bear in mind
It is said that it’s best to avoid oil baths during full moon and no moon days and on days when it is raining or when the temperature is very cold. It is also a good practice to avoid eating cold items like yogurt, ice cold water/drinks, lemonade etc. on the day of oil bath.