It seems to me that everyone has their own must-haves-of-travel list. You know, those little, or sometimes big, items that bring you comfort, or make it easier when you’re on the road and away from home. Maybe your list changes over time, maybe it depends on where you’re traveling to, and maybe you even use these items at home, as well as when you travel.
Harlan at Out and Out recently wrote about a new item he just discovered and added to his list: sesame oil. I’ve been using it for years, every night, whether I’m home or on a trip. And while I agree with what he wrote and the reasons sesame oil is wonderful, he left out a few very important points I want to share with you. It’s the very reason I use it every night, and I’ll share HOW I use it.
For me, using sesame oil started about 10 years ago. My background for many years as a Yoga practitioner and teacher led to an interest in Ayurvedic health practices. I was interested in balancing what Ayurveda calls the three doshas. So that’s when I started incorporating sesame oil into my daily routine! Even if you’re not interested in Ayurveda, travel, as amazing and wonderful as it is, does take its toll on our health. It disrupts our sleep patterns and can be stressful. Sesame oil:
- Promotes healthy sleep patterns
- Calms stress
- Calms the tendency to think too much
- Calms and soothes your nervous system
And in general, it grounds you and nourishes your whole body. For all these reasons, I find using sesame oil at home helpful, and I especially find it a MUST when I’m traveling. When I’m home, I’ll sometimes rub sesame oil into my scalp, but EVERY NIGHT, I massage my feet with it, no matter where I am.
- Spend a few minutes giving a sesame oil massage to your feet using a vigorous back and forth motion, especially on the sides of the feet, where energy centers are located. This will help produce a settling effect on the nervous system.
- Use your fingertips to apply oil to the toes.
- Take care, you will be very slippery!
One question I’m often asked is, “What if I only do this once in a while. Will it help?” I always recommend when starting any new routine, such as rubbing oil on the soles of your feet, that you do it regularly for a month or so and see what you think. That should be enough time for you to tell. And if you do this only when you travel, and not every night as I do, you’ll also know whether it makes a difference or not.
I’m very picky about the sesame oil I use and have been using the same brand for a long time (backup item if first item is out of stock). I buy it by the bottle and then pour it into a small plastic tube, which sits by my bed and comes with me when I travel. So when you travel or when you’re home, if you have any trouble sleeping or find it difficult to quiet your mind before bedtime, give your feet a treat with sesame oil and see how it feels.
If you have any questions, let me know. Are you already a sesame oil fan? What do you bring with you when you travel that creates comfort?