Ayurvedic rituals are coveted around the world by health, wellness, skincare and haircare enthusiasts for incorporating methods that result in holistic wellbeing of a person. From self abhyanga to oil pulling and even tongue scraping, all these, and many more, rituals have their roots in Ayurveda, and are being increasingly adopted as Covid pushes one’s wellness to the forefront.

Another such ritual born from Ayurveda is the pechoti intake method. “Pechoti is a point located at the centre of the body, approximately above the naval area. The pechoti intake method is a process where one can absorb natural essential oil through one’s belly button for pain relief and relaxation. Traditionally, it was practiced by incorporating a number of essential oils based on their respective benefits and properties,” Dr Smita Naram, co-founder of Ayushakti, tells indianexpress.com

Explaining the science behind the ritual, Dr Naram elaborates: “Ayurveda considers the belly button to be an important marma point for a variety of reasons. This is one of the most crucial points that is extremely important in maintaining one’s health. The navel is the source of life and development. It is the center of one’s body and one of the most important sources of nourishment and growth. The method can promote an overall rejuvenating and healthy lifestyle.” 

Vikas Chawla, founder and director of Vedas Cure, adds that this Ayurvedic method is safe for anyone to try, including kids. However, pregnant women should avoid it. He also says that the best time to practice this method is at night, a couple of hours after consuming dinner and before going to bed. He further adds, “A few drops of the essential oil should be left on the belly button for half an hour. It is recommended to avoid spicy and fast food for the effectiveness of this system.”

The best time to practice pechoti is at night, a couple of hours after consuming dinner and before going to bed. (Photo: Pexels)

Dr Naram shares a step-by-step guide of practicing the pechoti intake method:

Step 1: Keep a brass or copper vessel with a spout besides you for hassle-free dispensing of the oil or ghee. 

Step 2: Lie down on your back comfortably and pour the oil or ghee into your navel.

Step 3: Let it stay in your navel for a few minutes until the temperature becomes lukewarm.

Step 4: Now remove the oil or ghee and pour in some more.

Step 5: Repeat this procedure thrice and then massage the remaining oil delicately over the navel area in a clockwise manner so it gets absorbed.

Dr Naram suggests the following oils if you wish to practice the pechoti intake method:

  • Neem oil can be used to treat blemishes and prevent acne, pimples, and spots.
  • Almond oil is beneficial to the skin and aids in the attainment of a glowing complexion.
  • Mustard oil is a detoxifying oil that relieves dry, chapped lips, dry skin, lethargy, and joint pains while also keeping the intestines moving by retaining good bacteria while removing harmful bacteria.
  • Olive oil is beneficial to attain healthy skin, strong hair, cramp-free menstruation.
  • Tea tree oil has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that help to relieve skin irritation and prevent acne.

To this Chawla also adds “ajwain oil for problems related to digestion like acidity and constipation, spearmint oil for treating irregular menstrual cycle and PCOD, and clary sage oil for menstrual cramps and abdominal pain.” 

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