OLEATE EVERY NOOK & CRANNY – with Dr Teitelbaum; Plus: Have you Been Spending Time with Vaidya Mishra? – your SV Ayurveda Newsletter Dec 7, 2023 – #46, Vol 12

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Nook & Cranny !

~ Dr Marianne Teitelbaum

Ayurveda is keen on keeping the body well lubricated. We have dozens of oils for every nook and cranny. Let’s see why the ancient doctors recommended keeping the body unctuous throughout the various stages of our lives.

From the time a baby is born, it is recommended you massage them daily with oil on their whole body, including their head and feet. By doing so, you will prevent many types of rashes, including diaper rash, dry skin, and eczema. And more importantly, the nutrients in the oils will absorb in and nourish the baby, which also includes nourishing the brain. 

The brain is not only made up of various types of fats and cholesterol, but needs fats and cholesterol to nourish it. Remember the biblical advice to “anoint your head with oil?” The oils on the scalp absorb in lubricating and nourishing the brain and all the nerves end on the soles of the feet so by rubbing oil there we can also provide good fats directly to the nervous system as they absorb from the skin. We have specific oils to use for the babies’ delicate skin, made by my teacher and mentor, Vaidya Rama Kant Mishra, whose specialty was dermatology.

As we get older, especially into the Vata stage of life, which is roughly defined as age 50 and older, it is of utmost importance to keep our bodies lubricated. Vata is the element of coldness, roughness and dryness and as we age and our bodies go deeper and deeper into this drying stage of life, we notice our body drying up all over the place. So we basically have oils and lubricants for every part of the body, which will reverse this trend of aging and drying.

First, we lubricate our skin by doing abhyanga, which is a daily oil massage. We have various types of oils made for all types of ailments — oils with herbs infused in them to balance Vata, Pitta and Kapha, oils which help arthritic joints, oils to balance the thyroid, oils to supply magnesium and Vitamin D transdermally through the skin and even oils for all types of skin conditions, such as eczema, psoriasis and all the autoimmune skin conditions that we treat on a daily basis. These oils are rubbed on the entire body, left on for 20 minutes and then washed off.

We have specific oils for the scalp: oils to cool down the highly reactive inflammatory toxins known as ama visha and gar visha coming through the scalp. These types of toxins are very hot and can create scaling, flaking, and itchiness of the scalp and can even contribute to hair loss as the heat damages the delicate hair follicles. These oils are based on aloe vera, which will cool down these very hot toxins as they come through the delicate pores.

We also have oils to encourage hair growth, which are used a lot in my practice since I see so many thyroid cases, and as you know, thyroid weakness is one of the several underlying causes of hair loss.

It is recommended to apply ghee to the upper and lower eyelids to lubricate the eyes, as they also tend to dry up as we age. 

Even our mouths get dry which can destroy the friendly bacteria growing in there, contributing to infections and gingivitis in the gum line. Which is why we have a special gandusha oil used for oil pulling, where we pull the oil in and out of our teeth which has great benefits for not only the teeth and gums, but even far-reaching effects to help remove toxins from the body and aid digestion. And keeping the oral friendly bacteria intact prevents Alzheimer’s since infections in the mouth have been shown to migrate up into the brain in people who have Alzheimer’s. Once you lose the friendly bacteria in the mouth, through the use of steroid inhalers, antibiotics, and antibacterial mouthwashes, infection will immediately start to grow. So keeping the mucus membranes in the mouth lubricated is a great way to encourage the friendly bacteria to grow there since they grow in the moist mucus layer which is found form the mouth on down to the rectum.

And we have several types of nasya or nasal oils to be dripped up into the nostrils which not only lubricate the sinuses and alleviate congestion there, but are also recommended to prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s, both of which develop as the brain literally dries up, losing that very important lubrication which the brain runs on. The sinuses are the gateway to the brain and so this is another way to keep the brain lubricated deep into old age, slowing up the tendency for memory loss and forgetfulness.

We even have 3 special oils to purify the prana, the life energy, as it comes into the marma or energy points at the top of the head (known as the Adhipati mama point), through the sinuses (known as the Ida and Pingala vibrational channels) and in through the ears (known as Karna). In this day and age the prana gets polluted with electromagnetic radiation which comes from computers, cell phones, cell phone towers, satellites, TV, smart meters, LED lights and electricity which we are literally surrounded with. We don’t want polluted prana feeding all our organs and glands and every cell in our body. This alone can bring all types of disease processes.

To continue our efforts to lubricate the body, we even recommend putting ghee in the navel and around the outside of the navel. The vagus nerve which controls digestion, the heart and the lungs runs all the way down to the navel area and lies directly behind it. So here we have access to help balance out this very important nerve by applying ghee into the navel which will actually enhance the parasympathetic nervous system which means it will help to take someone out of fight or flight or an accelerated nervous system creating optimal vagal nerve tone so that they can rest and digest better. 

Also think of this, the navel is where we received lots of nerve and blood supply from our mothers while in her womb. And there are lots of vibrational channels or nadis, found behind the navel, which have a huge impact on our health. Which is why applying ghee in the navel is said to alleviate symptoms in many areas of the body even beyond the area of the navel. It may help alleviate dryness of the eyes, poor eyesight, provide more lubrication to the body, and reduce the tendency towards constipation. It has even been suggested that when you apply ghee to the navel it seeps into the stomach, which absorbs the nutrients and distributes them to the body.

Vaidya Mishra even made a special oil for the face, since the skin on the face is much more delicate and responds to different types of herbs and oils than the rest of the body. This oil prevents wrinkles by keeping the skin soft and supple and one version of this oil even contains collagen which is also known to both prevent and treat wrinkles.

And finally, we even have a special Guda oil which lubricates and alleviates itching and burning in both the rectum and the vaginal tract. 

So, as you can see, Ayurveda goes to great lengths to reverse the tendency of the body to dry out as we age, which can cause the hair to fall, the skin to wrinkle and the brain to dry up. By learning all the various ways to keep your body oleated and unctuous, you will definitely add years to your life, keeping you healthy and vibrant deep into old age.

I hope this information was valuable to you as you strive to extend your lifespan with the highest quality of health possible.

Thank you,

Dr. Marianne Teitelbaum

Cinnaminson, New Jersey



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