Ritual, self care, and rest are all vital components to any body’s ability to transform. Plant Based Oils can help optimize your overall sense of wellbeing through topical (diluted & absorbed through your skin), aromatic (triggers memory & emotion through the limbic nerve) and internal (only if oils is therapeutic grade) use. Here are my top 5 ways to incorporate Plant Based Oils into your routine to help purify, cleanse and increase your wellbeing:
- Adding Essential Oils to an Epsom Salt Bath:
This is 100% the most important ritual of mine. Depending on the combination of oils this will help increase blood flow, promote healthy circulation and lymph, remove toxins and reduce stress. Essential Oils are not only beneficial to the physical body. They are also extremely powerful to assist in emotional healing. My ultimate favourite combination after a great yoga class is grapefruit & cypress. Sometime I like to add fresh ingredients like ginger or lavender.
- Oil Pulling:
This is an ancient Ayurveda practice done in the morning before you have brushed your teeth. Hold 1 tablespoon of raw coconut oil in your mouth and swish it around like nobody’s business (up to 20 minutes). Spit it out, scrap your tongue, and brush your teeth. Oil Pulling promotes healthy gums and helps pull toxins out of the body through the mouth. Raw coconut oil is known for its antibacterial and antifungal benefits. I love to spice my morning up by adding Clove oil to the mix!
- Castor Oils Packs:
Castor has to be treated with care but has been one of the most affective parts of my cleansing rituals. Using castor oil packs over your abdominal can help increase a sluggish digestion, purify the liver and kick-start the lymphatic system. It also promotes a deep sense of relaxation which is critical to a successful cleanse. Using an eye pillow and diffusing lavender or chamomile will add to your rejuvenating experience.
- Using Essential Oils to Replace your Cleaning Products:
There is certianly something soothing about a clean smelling home, but the commercial cleaning products we purchase these days are quite toxic to the air in our homes and can be very harsh to the skin. Many essential oils are not just aromatically beneficial to us, they possess antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties. Because of their potency, they can also be a very cost effective way to replace cleaning products too! My favourite Essential Oils to use are tea tree, lemongrass, lemon and clove – you can find lots of healthy sweet smelling recipes to replace the common cleaner online!
- Incorporating Essential Oils into your Yoga or Exercise Routine:
Think of an essential oil as the plant’s immunity, when extracted in the right way we can also use these oils for their therapeutic value. Different essential oils havedifferent healing properties, therefore knowing “the” what and why for each oil will help guide the intention for use. For example, Peppermint is used for mental clarity and increasing agility, so I would use this oil topically or aromatically before a strong work out. It is also used to release and digest, so I may use this during a Yin related yoga practice. Black Pepper (over coming limitations), Lavender (creating a sense of calm), or Cypress (increasing blood flow) are also some of my favourite oils that I would recommend using for a yoga or workout routine.
*Cleansing, detoxification and ritual are so personal, and can be harsh on the body so it is really important to consult with your Doctor or Naturopath for recommended cleansing methods or oil usage.
Liane Knox is an ERYT-200, YACEP, Certified Yoga Therapist, Certified in Yin Yoga, Pre-Natal, Post-Natal, Functional Movement and Certified in Yoga Adjustments. Since 2008, Liane has been teaching and educating students about yoga throughout Calgary. Her career has taken many forms: hosting workshops, writing/ facilitating continuing education trainings for other teachers, presenting at medical conferences, teaching at community events like Yogathon, organizing charity events for wanderlust & wanderlust 108 and currently she is writing programs to integrate the yogic philosophy into corporate culture and workplace wellness. She continues to look forward to where this abundant path will take her next!