I thought I would go into a little more detail on the benefits of each component of my shower routine. I didn't want to ramble too long on the video but each part of my routine has several benefits that I thought you may find helpful!
Why Dry Brush?
A mixture of dead skin cells, broken or crooked hairs, environmental pollution and sweat can block our pores. The regular daily shower we take may not be enough to fully clear these blockages. When this happens, the skin cannot effectively absorb vital nutrients and substances our body needs and it blocks our ability to clear out toxins as easily. Frequent dry brushing will help clear and open up the pores of the skin to freely eliminate waste and absorb nutrients, moisture, and sunlight for overall well-being.
Additional Dry Brushing Benefits
The mechanical action of dry brushing is wonderful for unclogging pores and exfoliating dry winter skin.
It also helps detoxify by increasing blood circulation and promoting lymph flow/drainage.
Dry brushing can decrease cellulite. This is because you are massaging the subcutaneous adipose tissue and breaking down the toxins that may be stored in it. These broken down toxins can then be eliminated through the skin and other "filtering" organs such as the kidneys.
It also stimulates your nervous system, which can make you feel invigorated afterward.
When a person regularly dry brushes their skin, the nerve endings are rejuvenated, making the body much more alert and responsive to stimulation, especially touch.
Many doctors and therapists have recommended dry skin brushing as a great means of releasing stress. The process is very meditative when done slowly.
Improved circulation helps make you more alert and relaxed at the same time which gives you a sensation of satisfaction that can positively affect the rest of your day.
The other important effect of dry brushing the skin is that, when the lymphatic system is cleansed, extra water and toxins that may be stored in the lymph nodes are expelled, which means the cells would need a new supply of nutrients. The faster this cycle repeats, the faster food is digested to provide nutrients. This relieves stress on the kidneys as filtering waste is faster thanks to the supportive role of high functioning skin and a fast-draining lymphatic system.
Why practice Abhyanga?
A self oil massage is very nurturing and beneficial on many levels. Let's start with the simplest reason: It is so much healthier to use oils to moisturize your body than over-the-counter creams, which are full of chemicals that are absorbed right into your blood stream. Our skin is our largest organ and whatever we put into our skin is akin to eating it. Don’t rub something on your skin that you wouldn’t eat because they are both going to the same place - your blood stream!
Improved circulation helps restore the muscles and increases stamina.
Increased moisture, improved texture, and tone for softer skin and improves overall skin appearance.
Better sleep and overall health
Relaxed state-of-mind and improved mood
Helps to drain the lymphatic system and helps to heal adrenal fatigue
Frankincense Oil Benefits
When I talk about essential oils we can't make medical claims so I discuss the benefits of the things they "may" help with. I may use the word "may" but there have been several research studies done to prove the benefits but they still say more research is needed.
Heals skin and prevents signs of aging. When applied topically or inhaled, it can make the scars and marks of boils, acne, and pox on the skin fade at a much faster rate. This also includes the fading of stretch marks, surgery marks, and fat cracks associated with pregnancy and delivery.
Helps boost immune system function and prevents illness. According to a 2012 study frankincense oil has antimicrobial properties and may help protect against pathogens. It can be applied to wounds to protect them from tetanus and becoming septic, without any side effects. It is equally good for internal wounds and protects them from developing infections.
The same antiseptic qualities also make frankincense oil a useful preventive measure against oral health issues, like bad breath, toothaches, cavities, mouth sores, and other infections.
Anti-anxiety and depression reducing abilities. It is very effective as a sedative because it induces a feeling of mental peace, relaxation, satisfaction, and spirituality. It also awakens insight, makes you more introspective and lowers anxiety, anger, and stress, especially in men, says a study published in the Journal of Men’s Health.
May help balance hormones and improve fertility. It reduces obstructed and delayed menstruation and delays the advent of menopause. It also helps to cure other symptoms associated with menses and pre-menstrual syndromes (PMS), such as pain in the abdominal region, nausea, headache, fatigue, and mood swings.
May help reduce the likelihood of asthma attacks in susceptible people. It may also relieve asthma symptoms, such as shortness of breath and wheezing.
It may help reduce symptoms of Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis by reducing inflammation in your gut. However, more research is needed.
It can be useful in helping prevent the breakdown of the cartilage tissue and has been shown to significantly reduce levels of dangerous and painful inflammation, making it a natural treatment option for pain-related conditions that affect the muscles, joints and tendons.
Frankincense helps the digestive system to properly detox and produce bowel movements. It may also help to reduce pain and cramping in the stomach, relieve nausea, flush out excess water from the abdomen that can cause bloating and even relieve PMS-related stomach pains. It has been used to help relieve pain, cramps, constipation, headaches, anxiety, nausea, fatigue and mood swings.
I consider my little playful rain shower a meditation practice. I am fully present, eyes closed, seated, breathing, and just playfully listening to the rain drops fall on my head. I am going to stick with eight science based benefits of meditation.
Reduces stress. Many styles of meditation can help reduce stress. Meditation can also reduce symptoms in people with stress-triggered medical conditions.
Controls anxiety. Habitual meditation helps reduce anxiety and anxiety-related mental health issues like social anxiety, phobias and obsessive-compulsive behaviors.
Promotes emotional health. Some forms of meditation can improve depression and create a more positive outlook on life. Research shows that maintaining an ongoing habit of meditation may help you maintain these benefits long term.
Enhances self awareness. Self-inquiry and related styles of meditation can help you "know yourself." This can be a starting point for making other positive changes.
Lengthens attention span. Several types of meditation may build your ability to redirect and maintain attention. As little as four days of meditation may have an effect.
Reduces age related memory loss. The improved focus you can gain through regular meditation may increase memory and mental clarity. These benefits can help fight age-related memory loss and dementia.
Helps fight addiction problems. Meditation develops mental discipline and willpower and can help you avoid triggers for unwanted impulses. This can help you recover from addiction, lose weight and redirect other unwanted habits.
Helps control pain. Meditation can diminish the perception of pain in the brain. This may help treat chronic pain when used as a supplement to medical care or physical therapy.
So as you can see, this routine has a multitude of benefits! I'm always trying to perfect the daily routine because I think that is where the magic lies. I feel a huge difference if I do this full routine versus just hopping in the shower. It definitely affects my whole day so I hope you will try it out and see how it makes you feel! If you have any questions just let me know in the comments.