A Comprehensive Ayurvedic Guide to Your Skin Care
Why would the skin be affected?
- Dry skin due to the cold air in the atmosphere (aggravation of vata).
- The pores shrink due to cold and less oil production and release on the skin, thus making it look dull instead of lustrous.
- Water in take is less, therefore, lack of body hydration makes the skin dry.
How do we keep our skin protected and healthy during such chill to the bone cold?
- Oil massages: in winter, the vata dosha gets aggravated due to cold and leads to dry skin. To counter the dryness, unctuousness is needed, and oiling does the trick. The vata dosha alleviating oil must be used for oil massages like- sesame oil, Bala-ashwagandha oil, and Dashmool oil.
Sesame oil- Known to possess vata pacifying properties and is used as the base oil for preparing oil formulations. It is suitable for oiling the body, including the face.
Bala-Ashwagandha oil- It improves the strength of the muscles, relieves inflammation, and improves blood circulation. The oil can be effective in case of injury and painful spasms.
Coconut oil- Has properties that help reduce inflammation on the skin, skin burns, and sunburns. The oil exfoliates the layer of dead cells on the skin, making it smooth and lustrous.
- Keeping the body hydrated - it is essential to consume fluids that will keep the body hydrated, skin moisturized, and body warm such as warm water,
- Soups of vegetables – tomato soups, mixed vegetable broth, chicken soup.
- Turmeric milk -Warm milk mixed with ½ teaspoon of turmeric.
- Cinnamon milk- warm milk with 1/4th teaspoon of cinnamon.
- Masala tea – a must-have in winter with a tinge of ginger, in a limited quantity, like twice a day.
- Exercising – walking on the treadmill or jogging, followed by some stretching and floor exercises, will help the body to get warmed up, sweat, and release essential oils onto the skin. The sweating of the body helps to get rid of dirt.
- Products to avoid in daily use -avoid using harsh soaps and body washes during baths- after oiling is done, gram flour with milk must be used instead of soap. It retains moisture and makes the skin look bright.
- Seasonal veggies like carrots, soups, and carrots are included in the form of salad and cooked with potatoes to eat with rice or bread.
- A dessert made of carrot is famously called ‘Gajar ka halwa’; the carrot is grated and cooked on low flame with milk and sugar until the milk is reduced to milk solids and the carrot is well cooked. It is garnished with chopped almonds and cashews.
- Nuts such as almond, cashew, walnut, and dates should be consumed during the winter season, as it provides the required warmth, unctuousness, and strength to the body.
- Fruits such as citrus fruits available are oranges and kiwi. They are a great source of vitamin C and help in boosting immunity.
- Green leafy vegetables are a good source of iron and vitamins and must include in foods. The famous north Indian ‘Sarso ka saag and make di roti’ is a winter delicacy.
- Gond ke laddoo, i.e., sweets made of nuts and edible gum, are best consumed in the winter season as it provides nutrition, and keep you warm. The edible gum in the laddoo benefits people with joint pains. It helps relieve pain and inflammation.
- Use eggs and meat to source proteins and essential nutrients like calcium, iron, vitamin B6, and B12.
Oily skin –Aloe vera gel moisturizes the face without making it oily, which is the best thing, and it keeps skin hydrated.
Combination of oily and dry- skin type where the face gets oily at the T zone, i.e., the nose and forehead. Aloe vera gel will be helpful in such skin types.
Seasonal foods are fresh and available to consume during a particular time of the year and are packed with nutrition. Healthy skin can be maintained by setting up a routine and sticking to it with minor changes in diet, exercise, and an additional regimen of oil massages helps in having soft and lustrous skin.
By: Dr. Mrinmayee