Ayurveda & Nutrition

6 Reasons You Need Abhyanga This Winter

6 Reasons You Need Abhyanga This Winter

As the winter sets in, it brings along with it winter dryness, itchy and rough skin, and stiff muscles and joints. Winter, according to Ayurveda, is the time dominated by Pitta Prakopakala that is a time when the Pitta dosha or the fire element in the nature is vitiated. When not managed properly, the imbalances can lead to digestive disorders and pain and stiffness in muscles and joints. One of the therapies most recommended in Ayurveda for this season isAbhyanga, a detoxifying warm oil massage. Let us see the other surprising benefits of Abhyangathat will have you reaching out to the closest Ayurveda retreat center for an appointment!

Abhyanga is one of the most popular and commonly recommended therapies in Ayurveda that incorporates warm, aromatic oils, rhythmically massaged into your body, which loosen toxins, relax the nervous system, and provide rest, nourishment, and rejuvenation. It improves blood circulation, tones and moisturizes skin, works up the lymph system, and calms the mind and nervous system.

Calming down the nervous system

Abhyanga calms the mind and the nervous system that is under attack from the physical stress and psychological or emotional stress we carry into our systems from our work place, relationships or family interactions.  Abhyanga helps you eliminate this emotional toxin which is stored in our body in the form of stress and tightness. It leaves you feeling peaceful, clear and light.

More awareness

A balanced nervous system leads to more awareness, alertness and clarity to dawn in your mind. With Abhyanga, you also feel more energized after the massage.

Tones and nourishes the skin

When you let the oil sit for a few minutes after the massage, it percolates into the body tissues, lubricating the internal organs, muscles and joints apart from toning up the skin, nourishing and moisturizing it. You can thank Abhyanga for keeping your skin soft and supple as a baby’s even in the harshest of winters. The best way to fight the scaly dry skin problems during winter is to take refuge in the bliss of Ayurvedic oil massages or Abhyanga, suited to your Dosha constitution. Oil is widely recommended as a healing, detoxifying, hydrating and re-balancing agent in Ayurveda. Ayurvedic massage as part of the Panchakarma treatment helps the oil penetrate the skin, presses into tissues and releases toxins like lactic acid and trapped oils and chemicals that may have seeped in.

(Read more: Happy Winters: 8 Secrets To Beat The Skin Dryness And Lethargy)


The massaging action in Abhyanga also boosts your body’s metabolism, so you can eat more and digest faster, even as the metabolism tends to slow in the season. It also improves the body’s waste elimination process. So Aama (toxins) does not get produced in the body.

Good time to detox

This also happens to be a good time to go for a full body detoxification massage, to calm the Pitta which is vitiated during winters. Apart from a seasonal change, we also tend to indulge during this festive season, making our digestive system work overtime. On the level of the mind, tempers might run high because of the imbalanced Pitta. The only way to manage an already weakened digestive system and a possibly angry and agitated mind all due to aggravated Pitta, is to go through a total detox for your body, mind and spirit. Heavy oils are a great antidote to an aggravated Pitta.

For insomniacs

If you have been sleeping less than desirable number of hours and going through the day half awake, or if you have complaints about the quality of your sleep (which unfortunately or fortunately is linked to how energized and productive you are likely to be the following day), then Abhyanga is a must for you. Ayurveda experts recommend a 15 to 20-minute head and foot massage before dinner. The message will relax your body and purge it off the fatigue and stress of the day, while preparing you to hit the sack and sleep for eight straight hours of undisturbed sleep.