Sesame seed oil has been used for centuries and is known for its nutritional, preventive and healing properties.
Sesame seeds (til) are probably one of the most common ingredients used in food and in making sweets. In fact, sweets or ‘laddoos’ made by combining sesame seeds with jaggery and coconut are very popular in India. The oil obtained from sesame seeds is also very popular. In fact, in Ayurveda, sesame seed oil is said to be ‘dosha balanced’ and suits all the ‘doshas’. Ayurvedic prescriptions actually make extensive use of sesame seeds and the oil. It has been used for centuries and is known for its nutritional, preventive and healing properties.
Sesame seeds are said to have the highest oil content. They are also said to have sun-protective properties of SPF 6. Therefore, Ayurveda recommends it for body massage. As far as its nutritional value is concerned, it contains omega-6 fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and flavonoids. It is rich in Vitamin B and E and contains minerals like calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron and phosphorous.
Use it for infections and more
Due to its nutritive elements and sun-protective properties it is said to be ideal for the external care of the skin and hair too. It is known for its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties and thus keeps the skin healthy for bacterial and fungal infections. It is even said to cure fungal infections like athlete’s foot. It also nourishes the skin and improves blood circulation to the skin surface, thus transporting nutrients to the skin and hair follicles. The effect of sesame seed oil is so gentle that it is said to be ideal for massaging the tender skin of babies.
Benefits for the skin
Due to its sun-protective properties, sesame oil helps to soothe sun-damaged skin and protects the skin from the damage caused by ultraviolet radiation. It helps to protect the skin from dark patches and also protects the youthful properties of the skin. It is said that sesame seed oil used regularly for massage can prevent skin problems, including skin cancer. Application of the oil before bath is also said to protect the skin from the effects of chlorinated water.
Make your own sesame seeds scrub
Sesame seeds can easily be used in scrubs for face and body. In fact, it would help to remove tan.
- Take sesame seeds, dried mint (pudina) leaves, one tablespoon each lemon juice and honey.
- Crush the sesame seeds coarsely and powder the dried mint leaves.
- Mix them with lemon juice and a little honey and apply on the face and arms.
- Rub gently on the skin.
- Leave on for a few minutes and then wash off with water.
Sesame seeds help remove tan and produce an even colour tone. Mint has a stimulating effect and adds a glow to the skin, while honey moisturizes and softens the skin.
Benefits for hair and scalp
Since sesame seed are rich in nutrients, the oil can also be used for the hair. In fact, it helps to keep the hair and scalp free from problems like dandruff and fungal infections. In fact, it is said to promote hair growth and check hair loss. Applying warmed sesame seed oil on the hair helps hair that has been subjected to chemical lotions, dyes and colours. It nourishes the hair and softens it. In fact, sesame oil treatments are said to prevent split ends and add shine to the hair.
(This article is authored by Shahnaz Husain, a Padma Shri Award recipient and pioneer of the Ayurvedic beauty movement and the head of a global network of franchise ventures and 375 formulations.)
Total Wellness is now just a click away.
Follow us on