I always have a special affection towards these tiny black, brown sesame seeds. I make sure use them very often in many dishes. Nutty aroma while roasting is pure Nostalgia. Munching on the small sesame jaggery balls or bars made by mom specially in winters was fun in childhood. Let’s talk about small dynamites stuffed with very potent nutrients within.
Til / Sesame is a rich source of Magnesium, Calcium, Potassium, and Iron. This high calorie power packed seeds are cholesterol free. Yes, you read right. This is brilliant source of Omega fatty acids which are essential fats we need for nerve cell health and other many important metabolic activities. Ayurveda texts swear by its antioxidant and antiaging effects. Ayurveda honors sesame at the best oil source among all other seeds. For Vata Dosha sesame oil is panache. Surprisingly other properties like Bitter taste ,hot nature, penetrating capacity in skin makes it Kapha Dosha pacifier too. Ayurveda physicians in that era didn’t stop praising sesame for their multiple benefits on health and beauty. That is the reason they didn’t restrict the mode of administration of sesame only as food. They knew these teensy-weensy seeds are mightier than just an ingredient in some dish. Sesame oil can be efficiently used in many ways .Let’s look at the ways we can use sesame effectively for health ,wellness and beauty
- Eating : They say ancient era saw these black seeds no less than gold. They are compared with the same weight of gold in trading. Their nutty flavor is not the only reason for this. Sesame is used as whole seeds in cooking, but the rich rancid resistant oil derived from them is valued even more. Ayurveda dietetics guides about the correct way of eating sesame. As it is high calorie food you better posses’ a good appetite first. It is heavy to digest, hot in nature, and bitter taste dominant. Winter is the best season to consume sesame seeds. Sesame seeds bars (chikki), jaggery sesame balls, chutney (Tahini) , sesame powdered soups are some of the season specific nourishing dishes in India. Other than winters sesame seeds can be used in salads, veggies, toppings on desserts etc. Ayurveda promotes its antiaging effects in rejuvenation therapy called as Rasayana. Chewing one tablespoons of black sesame seeds empty stomach early in morning is beneficial for teeth, cheek muscles, eyes, hair, and neck muscles. Make sure you follow other diet and lifestyle guidelines along with to get the maximum benefit. In Panchakarma sesame oil is consumed internally as an important step. Plain or medicated sesame oil is used for the purpose. Apart from eating there is an interesting form of oral administration of Sesame. Oil Pulling is a very useful practice for dental hygiene and buccal cavity health. Holding sesame oil /coconut oil in mouth and squishing it inside for 5-10 mins is called as oil pulling .It lubricates the inner mucosa , strengthen the cheek muscles and treat many mouth condition. Daily oil pulling after cleaning teeth is a part of immune building routine according to Ayurveda. Here you do not swallow this oil but throw away after 5-10 minutes of rinsing. Please read my blog on oil pulling to know how to do it and other information.
- External application : Abhyanga ( body massage with oil) is one of the most rejuvenating process. Ayurveda indicates this in many health conditions. In fact, regular massage with appropriate oil is one of the potent immunity increasing therapy. Sesame oil is choice of oil for external application. Micronutrients present in the oil not only nourishes the skin cells, but it can also get absorbed inside the skin. It improves the blood flow, give strength to the muscles and ligaments. Sesame oil massage can relieve inflammation and pain in muscle and joints. It rejuvenates the skin , retains the elasticity and delay wrinkles or cracks. Not only in winter but throughout the year you need this external nutrition. Plain or medicated oil like Shatavari oil, ashwagandha oil and many more are used for massage. Base for the medicated oil is sesame seeds oil almost all the time. Abhyanga improves the circulation, relieves the lymph blockages, and help reduce superficial fat deposition under skin. Do avail benefit of sesame oil this way too.
- Nasya: Nasal instillation of medicated drops is called as Nasya. Nasya is a very effective treatment for above neck disorders. Ayurveda thoughtfully introduced Nasya as one of the panchakarma. The great scholars studying Ayurveda were aware of the anatomical access to brain through nostrils. Sesame seed oil Nasya for wellness is a very common practice or daily routine we advise to the patients and people. Til oil is used as base for preparing medicated oil for Nasya. Regular sesame oil Nasya retains the health of five sense organ. It improves the brain function and enhances the memory. Ayurveda swears by Nasya while treating greying of hair and hair fall. Please read my blog on Nasya to know detail instructions. Nasal administration is very simple and unique way to avail the benefits of these little superheroes.
- Basti (enema /rectal administration ): You may feel super weird to read this but the basti kit is like magic wand and Ayurveda doctors use Basti therapy to treat hundreds of health conditions. Large intestine has enormous surface area with thousands of blood vessels. The inner layer is highly sensitive and can be used to introduce medicine efficiently. The medicine introduced as enema bypass the whole complicated procedure of digestion. Your gut can absorb the medicine fast. Moreover, Ayurveda consider large intestine as seat of Vata dosha. Sesame is the best Vata pacifier. So, controlling Vata in its own field with the best of its antidot is wise. Sesame oil treated with medicinal herbs is used for basti therapy. Not only when you have health conditions but even if you are healthy, you can avail the befits of this magic treatment to nourish your gut flora and prevent illnesses. Kindly read my blog about Basti therapy for more details.
- Shirodhara : This is also unique therapy in Ayurveda where Sesame oil treated with herbs is used. A continuous stream of oil is poured on forehead for some 45 mins. Shirodhara works on nervous system and five sense organs. It is effectively used from hundreds of years for psychological wellness, hair growth , to stimulate the chakra, relive stress, manage sleep disorders, and increase peace in mind. This can be the most wonderful way to get benefit from sesame seeds for your physical ,mental, cognitive and spiritual health. Please read blog on Shirodhara to know more.
These are the five effective ways to get maximum benefits from mighty Sesame. Do not restrict yourself and practice above ways to stay healthy. Unpolished seeds are nutrient intact and are ideal for use. Black, brown seeds are good than white polished one. Organic seeds can be best option. Roast seeds and store in clean glass jar to increase its shelf life. If you want to know how sesame seeds can benefit for your body type or health condition drop an email or comment on this blog.