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Sutra Sthana Chapter 13. Oleation therapies

Section/Chapter Sutra Sthana Chapter 13
Tetrad/Sub-section Kalpana Chatushka
Preceding Chapter Vatakalakaliya Adhyaya
Succeeding Chapter Swedadhyaya
Other Sections Nidana Sthana, Vimana Sthana, Sharira Sthana, Indriya Sthana, Chikitsa Sthana, Kalpa Sthana, Siddhi Sthana
Translator and commentator Thakar A. B., Auti S.
Reviewer Dwivedi L.K., Galib, Sabnis M., Patil V.
Editors Mangalasseri P., Deole Y.S., Basisht G.
Year of publication 2020
Publisher Charak Samhita Research, Training and Skill Development Centre
DOI 10.47468/CSNE.2020.e01.s01.015


Kalpana chatushka (tetrad on applications of medicine) starts with the chapter on oleation therapy. This chapter describes details of oleation therapy including the source of lipids, their types, properties, administration method, time, dose, alternative methods of administration in the form of recipe (vicharana). It also describes the indications, contraindications, symptoms of proper, inadequate and excess oleation. Adipose tissue in the form of fat is essential component of body. It provides lubrication to all viscera and other interstitial spaces due to its unctuous property. Lipids are integral part of cell membrane that allows entry of lipid soluble substances/drugs into the cells. The selection of lipids for oleation therapy depends upon the specific integrity of gut, severity of the disease, and specific indications of lipids. Lipids processed with medicines can be prescribed in diabetes or skin diseases where natural fat is contra-indicated. Apt oleation therapy results in normal functions of vata, increase in digestive power, softening of (hard) feces, and making the body supple and soft. Improper implementation of methods or violation of guidelines, results in complications such as skin diseases, itching, hemorrhoids, ascites, fainting, indigestion etc. Oleation and sudation (induced sweating) are pre-requisites or pre-treatment procedures for purification (shodhana) therapies to aid in moving vitiated dosha to gut (for an eventual expelling out of the body and achieve purification). The present chapter can be considered as a first step in purification therapies described.
Keywords: Sneha(lipids), snehana (oleation therapy), fat and lipid metabolism, abhyanga (therapeutic massage), ghee, oil, marrow, fat, alternative options for oleation therapy, indications, dose, clinical applications.


The chapter Snehadhyaya is the first chapter of Kalpana Chatushka (tetrad describing planning of purification therapies). It follows the Vatakalakaliya Adhyaya, the last chapter of Nirdesha Chatushka (tetrad describing guidelines for clinical practice). This sequential order of the tetrad suggests the logical progression in the clinical training of Ayurveda learners – from a foundational course in therapeutics to more specialized procedures (including purification therapies). Oleation (Snehana) is the first step before purification therapies, like therapeutic emesis [vamana] and therapeutic purgation [virechana], and is also the best medicine suggested for vitiated vata - the key pathological factor responsible for many diseases.

History and broad outline of chapter

The earliest reference to snehana is found in the ancient text Markandeya Purana where ghrita (clarified butter), taila (oil), vasa (muscle fat) and majja (bone marrow) were quoted as sneha drugs (Mar. 165, 166, 244-245). However, a detailed description of snehana- swedana (sudation) with complications and their treatments is only found in Charak Samhita and related Ayurveda texts. The Snehadhyaya provides comprehensive information about sneha (lipids) and snehana (its therapeutic administration/oleation).

Sneha (lipids): Sneha is any substance that produces unctousness, softness, moisture, increased secretions etc. in the body. [Cha.Sa.Sutra Sthana 22/11] Sneha is predominantly composed of basic elements - prithvi (earth) and jala (water). [Su.Sa.Sutra Sthana 41/11][1] Hence it is responsible for moisture [Hemadri on A.H. Sutra Sthana 1/18][2], providing softness to the body while also playing a major role in producing strength. [Su.Sa.Sutra Sthana 46/516][1] Sneha qualities can be described using adjectives such as guru (heavy), sheeta (cold), sara (agility), snigdha (unctuous), manda (slow), sukshma (penetrating), mridu (soft), drava (fluid), and pichchila (slimy). [Cha.Sa.Sutra Sthana 22/15] and [A.H. Sutra Sthana 16/1][2] These qualities make oleation therapy a prerequisite for most of the Panchakarma (five purification) procedures since they help in ejecting impurities out through the gut. All dhatu (body tissues) require sneha for growth and maintenance. Sneha adds unctuousness to food preparations, necessary in the process of digestion. [Cha.Sa.Chikitsa Sthana 15/6] Kapha and pitta are two basic doshas that have snigdha i.e. unctuousness. [A.H. Sutra Sthana 1/11-12][2] Sneha therapy is mainly indicated for alleviation of vata dosha, which is the main etiological factor responsible for most diseases. Modern science also gives importance to fats. Vitamins A, D, E, and K are fat-soluble[3] , meaning they can only be digested, absorbed, and transported using fats. Fats are also sources of essential fatty acids, an important dietary requirement. Fats play a vital role in maintaining healthy skin and hair, insulating body organs against shock, maintaining body temperature, and promoting healthy cell function.[4]

The glycerol formed from catabolism of fats can be converted to glucose by the liver and thus used as a source of energy.[5] Fat also serves as a useful buffer against a host of diseases. When a particular substance - chemical or biotic—reaches unsafe levels in the bloodstream, the body can effectively dilute, or at least maintain, an equilibrium of the offending substances by storing them in a new fat tissue. This helps in protecting vital organs, until such time as the offending substances could be metabolized and/or removed from the body by such means as excretion, urination, accidental or intentional bloodletting, sebum excretion, and hair growth.[6] Beside pacifying vitiated dosha, enhancing nutritional value and aiding in metabolic functions, sneha can be utilized for body purification, as described earlier. Sneha i.e. fats like ghrita, oils etc. are used for Panchakarma and related purification processes since fats are essential component of cell membrane[7] and thus, have easy access to all parts of the body. Fats have multidimensional properties that can be utilized for therapeutic purpose. Thus, this chapter on sneha is important from the standpoint of therapeutics.

Sanskrit text, Transliteration and English Translation

अथातः स्नेहाध्यायं व्याख्यास्यामः||१|| इति ह स्माह भगवानात्रेयः||२||

athātaḥ snēhādhyāyaṁ vyākhyāsyāmaḥ||1|| iti ha smāha bhagavānātrēyaḥ||2||

athAtaH SnehadhyAyaM vyAkhyAsyAmaH||1|| iti ha smAha bhagavAnAtreyaH||2||

Now we shall expound the chapter "Sneha" (Oleation therapies). Thus said Lord Atreya. [1-2]

Questions asked by Agnivesha

साङ्ख्यैः सङ्ख्यातसङ्ख्येयैः सहासीनं पुनर्वसुम्| जगद्धितार्थं पप्रच्छ वह्निवेशः स्वसंशयम्||३||

sāṅkhyaiḥ saṅkhyātasaṅkhyēyaiḥ sahāsīnaṁ punarvasum| jagaddhitārthaṁ papraccha vahnivēśaḥ svasaṁśayam||3||

sA~gkhyaiH sa~gkhyAtasa~gkhyeyaiH sahAsInaM punarvasum| jagaddhitArthaM papraccha vahniveshaH svasaMshayam||3||

Noticing Punarvasu sitting among learned sages, Agnivesha shared his doubts for the wellbeing of world by asking the following questions. [3]

किंयोनयः कति स्नेहाः के च स्नेहगुणाः पृथक्| कालानुपाने के कस्य कति काश्च विचारणाः||४||

कति मात्राः कथम्मानाः का च केषूपदिश्यते| कश्च केभ्यो हितः स्नेहः प्रकर्षः स्नेहने च कः||५||

स्नेह्याः के के न च स्निग्धास्निग्धातिस्निग्धलक्षणम्| किं पानात् प्रथमं पीते जीर्णे किञ्च हिताहितम्||६||

के मृदुक्रूरकोष्ठाः का व्यापदः सिद्धयश्च काः| अच्छे संशोधने चैव स्नेहे का वृत्तिरिष्यते||७||

विचारणाः केषु योज्या विधिना केन तत् प्रभो!| स्नेहस्यामितविज्ञान ज्ञानमिच्छामि वेदितुम्||८||

kiṁyōnayaḥ kati snēhāḥ kē ca snēhaguṇāḥ pr̥thak| kālānupānē kē kasya kati kāśca vicāraṇāḥ||4||

kati mātrāḥ kathammānāḥ kā ca kēṣūpadiśyatē| kaśca kēbhyō hitaḥ snēhaḥ prakarṣaḥ snēhanē ca kaḥ||5||

snēhyāḥ kē kē na ca snigdhāsnigdhātiSnigdhalakṣaṇam| kiṁ pānāt prathamaṁ pītē jīrṇē kiñca hitāhitam||6||

kē mr̥dukrūrakōṣṭhāḥ kā vyāpadaḥ siddhayaśca kāḥ| acchē saṁśōdhanē caiva snēhē kā vr̥ttiriṣyatē||7||

vicāraṇāḥ kēṣu yōjyā vidhinā kēna tat prabhō!| snēhasyāmitavijñāna jñānamicchāmi vēditum||8||

kiMyonayaH kati SnehaH ke ca SnehaguNAH pRuthak| kAlAnupAne ke kasya kati kAshca vicAraNAH||4||

kati mAtrAH kathammAnAH kA ca keShUpadishyate| kashca kebhyo hitaH SnehaH prakarShaH Snehane ca kaH||5||

snehyAH ke ke na ca SnigdhaSnigdhatiSnigdhalakShaNam| kiM pAnAt prathamaM pIte jIrNe ki~jca hitAhitam||6||

ke mRudukrUrakoShThAH kA vyApadaH siddhayashca kAH| acche saMshodhane caiva snehe kA vRuttiriShyate||7||

vicAraNAH keShu yojyA vidhinA kena tat prabho!| SnehasyAmitavij~jAna j~jAnamicchAmi veditum||8||

  • What are the sources of sneha (fats)?
  • How many kinds are there?
  • What are the qualities of each sneha?
  • At what time should it be ingested?
  • What are the anupana (food articles to consume after ingesting sneha)?
  • How many and which preparations or alternative methods are for administration of sneha?
  • What are the acceptable forms of consumption of sneha?
  • What dose is recommended of sneha?
  • Which are the manam (measurement) of sneha in preparations?
  • Which sneha is better for whom?
  • What is the end point of oleation therapy?
  • Who are suitable for oleation?
  • What is the prakarsha (duration) of therapy?
  • In whom is oleation contraindicated?
  • What are the visible signs of proper, inadequate and excessive oleation?
  • What is the regimen to be followed prior to, during and after oleation therapy?
  • What kind of people have mridu (soft) or krura (rough and/or hard) koshtha (bowel habit)?
  • What are the complications of oleation therapy?
  • What are the courses of treatment, if complications arise?
  • What measures should be followed after acchapana (drinking fats), for samshodhana (purification) purposes or otherwise?
  • To whom should vicharana (alternative forms or recipes of sneha) be given and in what manner?

Through these questions, I want to know all details of snehana (oleation therapy), revered Sir. [4-8]

Sources of lipids

अथ तत्संशयच्छेत्ता प्रत्युवाच पुनर्वसुः| स्नेहानां द्विविधा सौम्य योनिः स्थावरजङ्गमा||९||

तिलः प्रियालाभिषुकौ बिभीतकश्चित्राभयैरण्डमधूकसर्षपाः| कुसुम्भबिल्वारुकमूलकातसीनिकोचकाक्षोडकरञ्जशिग्रुकाः||१०||

स्नेहाशयाः स्थावरसञ्ज्ञितास्तथा स्युर्जङ्गमा मत्स्यमृगाः सपक्षिणः| तेषां दधिक्षीरघृतामिषं वसा स्नेहेषु मज्जा च तथोपदिश्यते||११||

atha tatsaṁśayacchēttā pratyuvāca punarvasuḥ| snēhānāṁ dvividhā saumya yōniḥ sthāvarajaṅgamā||9||

tilaḥ priyālābhiṣukau bibhītakaścitrābhayairaṇḍamadhūkasarṣapāḥ| kusumbhabilvārukamūlakātasīnikōcakākṣōḍakarañjaśigrukāḥ||10||

snēhāśayāḥ sthāvarasañjñitāstathā syurjaṅgamā matsyamr̥gāḥ sapakṣiṇaḥ| tēṣāṁ dadhikṣīraghr̥tāmiṣaṁ vasā snēhēṣu majjā ca tathōpadiśyatē||11||

atha tatsaMshayacchettA pratyuvAca punarvasuH| SnehanAM dvividhA saumya yoniH sthAvaraja~ggamA||9||

tilaH priyAlAbhiShukau bibhItakashcitrAbhayairaNDamadhUkasarShapAH| kusumbhabilvArukamUlakAtasInikocakAkShoDakara~jjashigrukAH||10||

SnehashayAH sthAvarasa~jj~jitAstathA syurja~ggamA matsyamRugAH sapakShiNaH| teShAM dadhikShIraghRutAmiShaM vasA sneheShu majjA ca tathopadishyate||11||

To remove all doubts (of Agnivesha), Punarvasu replied, “Dear (Agnivesha) snehayoni (sources of fats) are of two types: Sthavara (Vegetable origin) and Jangama (Animal origin).

Among sthavara (plant fats), tila (sesame), priyala (Buchanania lanzan), abhishuka (pistacia vera Linn), vibhitaka (belliric myrobalan), chitra (Baliospermum montanum, or red physic nut), abhaya (chebulic myrobalan), eranda (Ricinus communis), madhuka (madhuka indica), sarshapa (mustard), kusumbha (Brassica nigra Koch), bilva (Aegle marmelos Corr, or bael fruit), aruka (Prunus persica Linn), mulaka (Raphanus sativas Linn, or radish), atasi- Linseed (Linum usitatissimum Linn), nikochaka(pistachio), akshoda (Aleurites moluccana, or wild walnut), karanja (Indian beech-Pongamia pinnata Merr), shigruka (Moringa oleifera Lam, or drumstick) contains fat suitable for consumption. Among jangama (animal fats), matsya (fish), mriga (antelopes) and pakshi (birds), curd, milk, ghee, meat, muscle fat and bone marrow are the animal sources of fat. [9-11]


सर्वेषां तैलजातानां तिलतैलं विशिष्यते| बलार्थे स्नेहने चाग्र्यमैरण्डं तु विरेचने||१२||

(कटूष्णं तैलमैरण्डं वातश्लेष्महरं गुरु | कषायस्वादुतिक्तैश्च योजितं पित्तहन्त्रपि ||१||)|

sarvēṣāṁ tailajātānāṁ tilatailaṁ viśiṣyatē| balārthē snēhanē cāgryamairaṇḍaṁ tu virēcanē||12||

(kaṭūṣṇaṁ tailamairaṇḍaṁ vātaślēṣmaharaṁ guru | kaṣāyasvādutiktaiśca yōjitaṁ Pittahantrapi ||1||)|

sarveShAM tailajAtAnAM tilatailaM vishiShyate| balArthe Snehane cAgryamairaNDaM tu virecane||12||

(kaTUShNaM tailamairaNDaM vAtashleShmaharaM guru | kaShAyasvAdutiktaishca yojitaM Pittahantrapi ||1||)|

Among all varieties of oils, sesame oil is considered the best and is ideal for giving strength and unctuousness. Castor oil is the best for virechana (purgation). It is pungent, ushna virya (hot potency), alleviates vitiated vata and kapha, guru (dense, viscous or heavy) in nature and when used with astringent, sweet, bitter drugs it also helps mitigate aggravated pitta. [12]

Four major lipids

सर्पिस्तैलं वसा मज्जा सर्वस्नेहोत्तमा मताः| एषु चैवोत्तमं सर्पिः संस्कारस्यानुवर्तनात्||१३||

sarpistailaṁ vasā majjā sarvasnēhōttamā matāḥ| ēṣu caivōttamaṁ sarpiḥ saṁskārasyānuvartanāt||13||

sarpistailaM vasA majjA sarvasnehottamA matAH| eShu caivottamaM sarpiH saMskArasyAnuvartanAt||13||

Ghrita (clarified butter), oil (of sesame), vasa (muscle fat) and majja (bone marrow) are considered the best sneha. Among these, ghrita is superior as it possesses the qualities of samskara i.e. blending with other substances having different properties without losing its own properties. [13]

Benefits of lipids

घृतं पित्तानिलहरं रसशुक्रौजसां हितम्| निर्वापणं मृदुकरं स्वरवर्णप्रसादनम्||१४||

मारुतघ्नं न च श्लेष्मवर्धनं बलवर्धनम्| त्वच्यमुष्णं स्थिरकरं तैलं योनिविशोधनम्||१५||

विद्धभग्नाहतभ्रष्टयोनिकर्णशिरोरुजि| पौरुषोपचये स्नेहे व्यायामे चेष्यते वसा||१६||

बलशुक्ररसश्लेष्ममेदोमज्जविवर्धनः| मज्जा विशेषतोऽस्थ्नां च बलकृत् स्नेहने हितः||१७||

ghr̥taṁ pittānilaharaṁ rasaśukraujasāṁ hitam| nirvāpaṇaṁ mr̥dukaraṁ svaravarṇaprasādanam||14||

mārutaghnaṁ na ca ślēṣmavardhanaṁ balavardhanam| tvacyamuṣṇaṁ sthirakaraṁ tailaṁ yōniviśōdhanam||15||

viddhabhagnāhatabhraṣṭayōnikarṇaśirōruji| pauruṣōpacayē snēhē vyāyāmē cēṣyatē vasā||16||

balaśukrarasaślēṣmamēdōMajjavivardhanaḥ| majjā viśēṣatō'sthnāṁ ca balakr̥t snēhanē hitaḥ||17||

ghRutaM PittanilaharaM rasashukraujasAM hitam| nirvApaNaM mRudukaraM svaravarNaprasAdanam||14||

mArutaghnaM na ca shleShmavardhanaM balavardhanam| tvacyamuShNaM sthirakaraM tailaM yonivishodhanam||15||

viddhabhagnAhatabhraShTayonikarNashiroruji| pauruShopacaye snehe vyAyAme ceShyate Vasa||16||

balashukrarasashleShmamedoMajjavivardhanaH| Majja visheShato~asthnAM ca balakRut Snehane hitaH||17||

  • Ghrita alleviates pitta and vata, and is beneficial for rasa, shukra and ojas. Provides relief from burning sensation, softens the tissues, improves voice and complexion. [14]
  • Sesame oil alleviates vitiated vata, does not aggravate kapha (rather, it improves strength). It is very beneficial for the skin, ushna virya, increases stability, and purifies or cleanses the vagina/ uterus. [15]
  • Vasa (muscle fat) is useful in healing punctured wounds, fractures, accidental trauma, prolapsed vagina, pain in ear and head, enhancing virility, oleation and for those doing physical exertion. [16]
  • Majja (bone marrow) improves strength, semen, rasa, kapha, meda and majja. It especially strengthens bones and useful for oleation. [17]

Time of administration

सर्पिः शरदि पातव्यं वसा मज्जा च माधवे| तैलं प्रावृषि नात्युष्णशीते स्नेहं पिबेन्नरः||१८||

sarpiḥ śaradi pātavyaṁ vasā majjā ca mādhavē| tailaṁ prāvr̥ṣi nātyuṣṇaśītē snēhaṁ pibēnnaraḥ||18||

sarpiH sharadi pAtavyaM Vasa Majja ca mAdhave| tailaM prAvRuShi nAtyuShNashIte SnehaM pibennaraH||18||

Ghrita (ghee) should be consumed in sharada (autumn) season, while vasa (muscle fat) and majja (bone marrow) in madhava (spring) season, and taila (oil) during pravrita (early monsoon). Sneha should be consumed at a time when it is neither very hot nor cold. [18]

वातपित्ताधिको रात्रावुष्णे चापि पिबेन्नरः| श्लेष्माधिको दिवा शीते पिबेच्चामलभास्करे||१९||

vAtaPittadhiko rAtrAvuShNe cApi pibennaraH| shleShmAdhiko divA shIte pibeccAmalabhAskare||19||

vātapittādhikō rātrāvuṣṇē cāpi pibēnnaraḥ| ślēṣmādhikō divā śītē pibēccāmalabhāskarē||19||

In case of aggravation of vata - pitta dosha, and in hot (summer) season, sneha should be consumed at night (evening time). In aggravation of kapha and in cold season, it should be consumed at day time. [19]

अत्युष्णे वा दिवा पीतो वातपित्ताधिकेन वा| मूर्च्छां पिपासामुन्मादं कामलां वा समीरयेत्||२०||

शीते रात्रौ पिबन् स्नेहं नरः श्लेष्माधिकोऽपि वा| आनाहमरुचिं शूलं पाण्डुतां वा समृच्छति||२१||

atyuṣṇē vā divā pītō vātapittādhikēna vā| mūrcchāṁ pipāsāmunmādaṁ kāmalāṁ vā samīrayēt||20||

śītē rātrau piban snēhaṁ naraḥ ślēṣmādhikō'pi vā| ānāhamaruciṁ śūlaṁ pāṇḍutāṁ vā samr̥cchati||21||

atyuShNe vA divA pIto vAtaPittadhikena vA| mUrcchAM pipAsAmunmAdaM kAmalAM vA samIrayet||20||

shIte rAtrau piban SnehaM naraH shleShmAdhiko~api vA| AnAhamaruciM shUlaM pANDutAM vA samRucchati||21||

Sneha consumed at day time during hot season or by person who has great aggravation of vata-pitta, can lead to diseases such as fainting, severe thirst, insanity and jaundice.

Sneha consumed at night during cold season or by person who has great aggravation of kapha, can causes diseases such as flatulence, loss of taste, pain in abdomen, or anemia. [20-21]

Vehicle for lipids

जलमुष्णं घृते पेयं यूषस्तैलेऽनु शस्यते| वसामज्ज्ञोस्तु मण्डः स्यात् सर्वेषूष्णमथाम्बु वा||२२||

jalamuṣṇaṁ ghr̥tē pēyaṁ yūṣastailē'nu śasyatē| vasāmajjñōstu maṇḍaḥ syāt sarvēṣūṣṇamathāmbu vā||22||

jalamuShNaM ghRute peyaM yUShastaile~anu shasyate| Vasamajj~jostu maNDaH syAt sarveShUShNamathAmbu vA||22||

After consuming ghrita, hot water should be taken as anupana (after drink), and after oil yusha (pulses soup), and after consuming vasa and majja, consumption of manda (scum of gruel) is advised.[22]

Various recipes of lipids

ओदनश्च वि लेपी च रसो मांसं पयो दधि| यवागूः सूपशाकौ च यूषः काम्बलिकः खडः||२३||

सक्तवस्तिलपिष्टं च मद्यं लेहास्तथैव च| भक्ष्यमभ्यञ्जनं बस्तिस्तथा चोत्तरबस्तयः||२४||

गण्डूषः कर्णतैलं च नस्तःकर्णाक्षितर्पणम्| चतुर्विंशतिरित्येताः स्नेहस्य प्रविचारणाः ||२५||

ōdanaśca vilēpī ca rasō māṁsaṁ payō dadhi| yavāgūḥ sūpaśākau ca yūṣaḥ kāmbalikaḥ khaḍaḥ||23||

saktavastilapiṣṭaṁ ca madyaṁ lēhāstathaiva ca| bhakṣyamabhyañjanaṁ Bastistathā cōttarabastayaḥ||24||

gaṇḍūṣaḥ karṇatailaṁ ca nastaḥkarṇākṣitarpaṇam| caturviṁśatirityētāḥ snēhasya pravicāraṇāḥ ||25||

odanashca vilepI ca raso mAMsaM payo dadhi| yavAgUH sUpashAkau ca YushaH kAmbalikaH khaDaH||23||

saktavastilapiShTaM ca madyaM lehAstathaiva ca| bhakShyamabhya~jjanaM BastistathA cottarabastayaH||24||

gaNDUShaH karNatailaM ca nastaHkarNAkShitarpaNam| caturviMshatirityetAH Snehasya pravicAraNAH ||25||

Odana (boiled rice), vilepi (thick gruel), mamsa rasa (meat soup), paya (milk), dadhi (curd), yavagu (thick gruel), soup shaka (soup of green leafy vegetables), yusha (pulses soup), kambalika (Preparation of sesame with curd, oil, salt etc.), khada (cooked buttermilk), saktu (roasted flour of barli, horse gram etc.), madya (wine), leha (confections), bhakshya (snacks), abhyanjana (oil massage), basti (enema), Uttara basti (urethral and vaginal enema), gandusha (gargles), karnataila (filling ear with oil), nastakarma (nasal drops), akshitarpana (filling eye with sneha) are twenty four types of pravicharana (mode of administration of sneha). [23-25]

Preferred form of lipid

अच्छपेयस्तु यः स्नेहो न तामाहुर्विचारणाम्| स्नेहस्य स भिषग्दृष्टः कल्पः प्राथमकल्पिकः||२६||

acchapēyastu yaḥ snēhō na tāmāhurvicāraṇām| snēhasya sa bhiṣagdr̥ṣṭaḥ kalpaḥ prāthamakalpikaḥ||26||

acchapeyastu yaH sneho na tAmAhurvicAraNAm| Snehasya sa bhiShagdRuShTaH kalpaH prAthamakalpikaH||26||

Acchapeya(drinking sneha alone) is not considered as vicharana (alternate form or recipe of administration of sneha), since physicians recommend it as the first preferred method of snehana therapy. [26]

रसैश्चोपहितः स्नेहः समासव्यासयोगिभिः| षड्भिस्त्रिषष्टिधा सङ्ख्यां प्राप्नोत्येकश्च केवलः||२७||

एवमेताश्चतुःषष्टिः स्नेहानां प्रविचारणा | ओकर्तुव्याधिपुरुषान् प्रयोज्या जानता भवेत्||२८||

Rasaiścōpahitaḥ snēhaḥ samāsavyāsayōgibhiḥ| ṣaḍbhistriṣaṣṭidhā saṅkhyāṁ prāpnōtyēkaśca kēvalaḥ||27||

ēvamētāścatuḥṣaṣṭiḥ snēhānāṁ pravicāraṇā | ōkartuvyādhipuruṣān prayōjyā jānatā bhavēt||28||

RasaishcopahitaH SnehaH samAsavyAsayogibhiH| ShaDbhistriShaShTidhA sa~gkhyAM prApnotyekashca kevalaH||27||

evametAshcatuHShaShTiH SnehanAM pravicAraNA | okartuvyAdhipuruShAn prayojyA jAnatA bhavet||28||

Sneha though is only one, depending upon permutations and combinations based on six tastes, could be of sixty three types. Thus, vicharana could be of sixty four kinds. These should be administered according to the habits, season, diseases and the constitution of the person. [27-28]

Doses of lipids and their indications

अहोरात्रमहः कृत्स्नमर्धाहं च प्रतीक्षते| प्रधाना मध्यमा ह्रस्वा स्नेहमात्रा जरां प्रति||२९||

इति तिस्रः समुद्दिष्टा मात्राः स्नेहस्य मानतः| तासां प्रयोगान् वक्ष्यामि पुरुषं पुरुषं प्रति||३०||

प्रभूतस्नेहनित्या ये क्षुत्पिपासासहा नराः| पावकश्चोत्तमबलो येषां ये चोत्तमा बले||३१||

गुल्मिनः सर्पदष्टाश्च विसर्पोपहताश्च ये| उन्मत्ताः कृच्छ्रमूत्राश्च गाढवर्चस एव च||३२||

पिबेयुरुत्तमां मात्रां तस्याः पाने गुणाञ्छृणु| विकाराञ्छमयत्येषां शीघ्रं सम्यक्प्रयोजिता||३३||

दोषानुकर्षिणी मात्रा सर्वमार्गानुसारिणी| बल्या पुनर्नवकरी शरीरेन्द्रियचेतसाम्||३४||

अरुष्कस्फोटपिडकाकण्डूपामाभिरर्दिताः| कुष्ठिनश्च प्रमीढाश्च वातशोणितिकाश्च ये||३५||

नातिबह्वाशिनश्चैव मृदुकोष्ठास्तथैव च| पिबेयुर्मध्यमां मात्रां मध्यमाश्चापि ये बले||३६||

मात्रैषा मन्दविभ्रंशा न चातिबलहारिणी| सुखेन च स्नेहयति शोधनार्थे च युज्यते||३७||

ये तु वृद्धाश्च बालाश्च सुकुमाराः सुखोचिताः| रिक्तकोष्ठत्वमहितं येषां मन्दाग्नयश्च ये||३८||

ज्वरातीसारकासाश्च येषां चिरसमुत्थिताः| स्नेहमात्रां पिबेयुस्ते ह्रस्वां ये चावरा बले||३९||

परिहारे सुखा चैषा मात्रा स्नेहनबृंहणी| वृष्या बल्या निराबाधा चिरं चाप्यनुवर्तते||४०||

ahōrātramahaḥ kr̥tsnamardhāhaṁ ca pratīkṣatē| pradhānā madhyamā hrasvā snēhamātrā jarāṁ prati||29||

iti tisraḥ samuddiṣṭā mātrāḥ snēhasya mānataḥ| tāsāṁ prayōgān vakṣyāmi puruṣaṁ puruṣaṁ prati||30||

prabhūtasnēhanityā yē kṣutpipāsāsahā narāḥ| pāvakaścōttamabalō yēṣāṁ yē cōttamā balē||31||

gulminaḥ sarpadaṣṭāśca visarpōpahatāśca yē| unmattāḥ kr̥cchramūtrāśca gāḍhavarcasa ēva ca||32||

pibēyuruttamāṁ mātrāṁ tasyāḥ pānē guṇāñchr̥ṇu| vikārāñchamayatyēṣāṁ śīghraṁ samyakprayōjitā||33||

dōṣānukarṣiṇī mātrā sarvamārgānusāriṇī| balyā punarnavakarī śarīrēndriyacētasām||34||

aruṣkasphōṭapiḍakākaṇḍūpāmābhirarditāḥ| kuṣṭhinaśca pramīḍhāśca vātaśōṇitikāśca yē||35||

nātibahvāśinaścaiva mr̥dukōṣṭhāstathaiva ca| pibēyurmadhyamāṁ mātrāṁ madhyamāścāpi yē balē||36||

mātraiṣā Mandavibhraṁśā na cātibalahāriṇī| sukhēna ca snēhayati śōdhanārthē ca yujyatē||37||

yē tu vr̥ddhāśca bālāśca sukumārāḥ sukhōcitāḥ| riktakōṣṭhatvamahitaṁ yēṣāṁ mandāgnayaśca yē||38||

jvarātīsārakāsāśca yēṣāṁ ciRasamutthitāḥ| snēhamātrāṁ pibēyustē hrasvāṁ yē cāvarā balē||39||

parihārē sukhā caiṣā mātrā snēhanabr̥ṁhaṇī| vr̥ṣyā balyā nirābādhā ciraṁ cāpyanuvartatē||40||

ahorAtramahaH kRutsnamardhAhaM ca pratIkShate| pradhAnA madhyamA hrasvA SnehamAtrA jarAM prati||29||

iti tisraH samuddiShTA mAtrAH Snehasya mAnataH| tAsAM prayogAn vakShyAmi puruShaM puruShaM prati||30||

prabhUtaSnehanityA ye kShutpipAsAsahA narAH| pAvakashcottamabalo yeShAM ye cottamA bale||31||

gulminaH sarpadaShTAshca visarpopahatAshca ye| unmattAH kRucchramUtrAshca gADhavarcasa eva ca||32||

pibeyuruttamAM mAtrAM tasyAH pAne guNA~jchRuNu| vikArA~jchamayatyeShAM shIghraM samyakprayojitA||33||

DoshanukarShiNI mAtrA sarvamArgAnusAriNI| balyA punarnavakarI sharIrendriyacetasAm||34||

aruShkasphoTapiDakAkaNDUpAmAbhirarditAH| kuShThinashca pramIDhAshca vAtashoNitikAshca ye||35||

nAtibahvAshinashcaiva mRudukoShThAstathaiva ca| pibeyurmadhyamAM mAtrAM madhyamAshcApi ye bale||36||

mAtraiShA MandavibhraMshA na cAtibalahAriNI| sukhena ca Snehayati shodhanArthe ca yujyate||37||

ye tu vRuddhAshca bAlAshca sukumArAH sukhocitAH| riktakoShThatvamahitaM yeShAM Mandagnayashca ye||38||

jvarAtIsArakAsAshca yeShAM ciRasamutthitAH| SnehamAtrAM pibeyuste hrasvAM ye cAvarA bale||39||

parihAre sukhA caiShA mAtrA SnehanabRuMhaNI| vRuShyA balyA nirAbAdhA ciraM cApyanuvartate||40||

Dose of sneha: Dose is divided into maximum, moderate and minimum based upon the time taken for it to get digested as follows:

  1. Pradhana (maximum): Dose that digests in one day and night (24 hours).
  2. Madhyama (moderate): Dose that digests in one day (12 hours).
  3. Hrasva (minimum): Dose that digests in half day (6 hours).

Thus, these three doses of sneha are administered by size (or quantity) of the dose, keeping in mind their ability to get digested. Further I will explain to you their usage depending upon individual patient. [29-30]

Persons suitable for maximum dose and its benefits

Those persons who consumes large quantity of sneha daily, those who can tolerate hunger and thirst, whose digestive and bodily strength is strong, who suffer from gulma (inflammation in digestive tract), snakebite cases, patients of visarpa (erysipelas), unmada (insanity), mutrakrichchra (dysuria) and constipation are advised to consume maximum dose of sneha. Maximum dose when used correctly quickly cures diseases. It removes excess of vitiated dosha out of the body, reaches all body channels, improves strength and rejuvenates the body, sense organs, and the mind. [31-34]

Persons suitable for moderate dose and its benefits

Patients of arushka (eruptions on scalp), sphota (vesicles), pidaka (big eruptions), itching, pama (scabies), kushtha (skin disorders), prameha (diabetics), vatashonita (gout), those who never consume large quantities of food, those with mridukoshtha (soft bowel habit) ,and those having moderate strength are advised to consume moderate dose of sneha.

A moderate dose never causes any serious complication. It never reduces strength, provides oleation with ease, and can be used for shodhana (body purification). [35-37]

Persons suitable for lowest dose and its benefits

Those who are old, young (children), those with tender physique, living luxurious life, those who cannot tolerate hunger or have difficulty with empty stomach, those suffering from poor digestion, patients suffering from fever, diarrhea and cough, those having poor body strength are advised to consume the smallest dose of sneha.

The lowest dose of sneha has minimal restrictions for its consumption. It does oleation and produces stoutness in the body, acts as an aphrodisiac, gives strength to the body, never causes any complication and can be used for longer duration. [38-40]

Persons suitable for consumption of ghee

वातपित्तप्रकृत यो वातपित्तविकारिणः| चक्षुःकामाः क्षताः क्षीणा वृद्धा बालास्तथाऽबलाः||४१||

आयुःप्रकर्षकामाश्च बलवर्णस्वरार्थिनः| पुष्टिकामाः प्रजाकामाः सौकुमार्यार्थिनश्च ये||४२||

दीप्त्योजःस्मृतिमेधाग्निबुद्धीन्द्रियबलार्थिनः| पिबेयुः सर्पिरार्ताश्च दाहशस्त्रविषाग्निभिः||४३||

vātaPittaprakr̥tayō vātaPittavikāriṇaḥ| cakṣuḥkāmāḥ kṣatāḥ kṣīṇā vr̥ddhā bālāstathā'balāḥ||41||

āyuḥprakarṣakāmāśca balavarṇasvarārthinaḥ| puṣṭikāmāḥ prajākāmāḥ saukumāryārthinaśca yē||42||

dīptyōjaḥsmr̥timēdhāgnibuddhīndriyabalārthinaḥ| pibēyuḥ sarpirārtāśca dāhaśastraviṣāgnibhiḥ||43||

vAtaPittaprakRutayo vAtaPittavikAriNaH| cakShuHkAmAH kShatAH kShINA vRuddhA bAlAstathA~abalAH||41||

AyuHprakarShakAmAshca balavarNasvarArthinaH| puShTikAmAH prajAkAmAH saukumAryArthinashca ye||42||

dIptyOjaHsmRutimedhAgnibuddhIndriyabalArthinaH| pibeyuH sarpirArtAshca dAhashastraviShAgnibhiH||43||

Persons having vata-pitta prakriti, those suffering from vata- pitta disorders, those desiring good eyesight, those who are wounded, emaciated, old and infirm, children and women, those willing to live long, those willing to have good strength, complexion, voice, nourishment, healthy progeny, luxurious lifestyle, good vitality, memory, intelligence, digestive strength, strength of sense organs, and those suffering from burning sensation, injury by weapon, poison and fire should drink ghrita. [41-43]

Persons suitable for consuming oil

प्रवृद्धश्लेष्ममेदस्काश्चलस्थूलगलोदराः| वातव्याधिभिराविष्टा वातप्रकृतयश्च ये||४४||

बलं तनुत्वं लघुतां दृढतां स्थिरगात्रताम् | स्निग्धश्लक्ष्णतनुत्वक्तां ये च काङ्क्षन्ति देहिनः||४५||

कृमिकोष्ठाः क्रूरकोष्ठास्तथा नाडीभिरर्दिताः| पिबेयुः शीतले काले तैलं तैलोचिताश्च ये||४६||

pravr̥ddhaślēṣmamēdaskāścalasthūlagalōdarāḥ| vātavyādhibhirāviṣṭā vātaprakr̥tayaśca yē||44||

balaṁ tanutvaṁ laghutāṁ dr̥ḍhatāṁ sthiragātratām | Snigdhaślakṣṇatanutvaktāṁ yē ca kāṅkṣanti dēhinaḥ||45||

kr̥mikōṣṭhāḥ krūrakōṣṭhāstathā nāḍībhirarditāḥ| pibēyuḥ śītalē kālē tailaṁ tailōcitāśca yē||46||

pravRuddhashleShmamedaskAshcalasthUlagalodarAH| vAtavyAdhibhirAviShTA vAtaprakRutayashca ye||44||

balaM tanutvaM laghutAM dRuDhatAM sthiragAtratAm | SnigdhashlakShNatanutvaktAM ye ca kA~gkShanti dehinaH||45||

kRumikoShThAH krUrakoShThAstathA nADIbhirarditAH| pibeyuH shItale kAle tailaM tailocitAshca ye||46||

Those having aggravated kapha dosha, excess meda dhatu (fat tissue), those having thick neck and abdomen (excess flabbiness with deposition of fat in the neck and abdominal region), those suffering from vata disorders, individuals with vata prakriti (predisposition), those who desire strength, slim and lean physique, dexterity and agility, sturdiness and stability of body, unctuous, smooth and silky skin, those who have worms in their abdomen, have hard bowel, those suffering sinus ulcers, and those used to consuming oils, should drink oils especially during cold season. [44-46]

Persons suitable for consumption of muscle fat

वातातपसहा ये च रूक्षा भाराध्वकर्शिताः| संशुष्करेतोरुधिरा निष्पीतकफमेदसः||४७||

अस्थिसन्धिसिरास्नायुमर्मकोष्ठमहारुजः| बलवान्मारुतो येषां खानि चावृत्य तिष्ठति||४८||

महच्चाग्निबलं येषां वसासात्म्याश्च ये नराः| तेषां स्नेहयितव्यानां वसापानं विधीयते||४९||

vātātapasahā yē ca rūkṣā bhārādhvakarśitāḥ| saṁśuṣkarētōrudhirā niṣpītaKaphamēdasaḥ||47||

asthisandhisirāsnāyumarmakōṣṭhamahārujaḥ| balavānmārutō yēṣāṁ khāni cāvr̥tya tiṣṭhati||48||

mahaccāgnibalaṁ yēṣāṁ vasāsātmyāśca yē narāḥ| tēṣāṁ snēhayitavyānāṁ vasāpānaṁ vidhīyatē||49||

vAtAtapasahA ye ca rUkShA bhArAdhvakarshitAH| saMshuShkaretorudhirA niShpItaKaphaMedasaH||47||

asthisandhisirAsnAyumarmakoShThamahArujaH| balavAnmAruto yeShAM khAni cAvRutya tiShThati||48||

mahaccAgnibalaM yeShAM VasasAtmyAshca ye narAH| teShAM SnehayitavyAnAM VasapAnaM vidhIyate||49||

Those who can tolerate breeze and sunlight, who have dryness in body, those who are emaciated due to excessive weightlifting and walking, those who have depleted semen and blood, decreased levels of kapha and meda, those who suffer from severe pain in bones, joints, veins, ligaments, vital spots and alimentary tract, those in whom highly aggravated vata remains covered in blocked channels of the body, those who have strong digestive power and are used to drinking or consuming muscle fat should drink vasa (muscle fat). [47-49]

Persons suitable for consumption of bone marrow

यःदीप्ताग्न क्लेशसहा घस्मराः स्नेहसेविनः| वातार्ताः क्रूरकोष्ठाश्च स्नेह्या मज्जानमाप्नुयुः||५०||

येभ्यो येभ्यो हितो यो यः स्नेहः स परिकीर्तितः|५१|

dīptāgnayaḥ klēśasahā ghasmarāḥ snēhasēvinaḥ| vātārtāḥ krūrakōṣṭhāśca snēhyā majjānamāpnuyuḥ||50||

yēbhyō yēbhyō hitō yō yaḥ snēhaḥ sa parikīrtitaḥ|51|

dIptAgnayaH kleshasahA ghasmarAH SnehasevinaH| vAtArtAH krUrakoShThAshca snehyA MajjanamApnuyuH||50||

yebhyo yebhyo hito yo yaH SnehaH sa parikIrtitaH|51|

Those having strong digestive power, are capable of tolerating excessive physical exertion, who eat large quantities of food often, who consume sneha often, those suffering from vata disorders, and those suffering from hard bowel movement are advised to consume bone marrow. [50-51]

Duration of oleation

स्नेहनस्य प्रकर्षौ तु सप्तरात्रत्रिरात्रकौ||५१||

snēhanasya prakarṣau tu saptarātratrirātrakau||51||

Snehanasya prakarShau tu saptarAtratrirAtrakau||51||

The recommended maximum duration for snehapana is either seven nights or three nights. [51]

Persons suitable for snehana (oleation)

स्वेद्याः शोधयितव्याश्च रूक्षा वातविकारिणः| व्यायाममद्यस्त्रीनित्याः स्नेह्याः स्युर्ये च चिन्तकाः||५२||

svēdyāḥ śōdhayitavyāśca rūkṣā vātavikāriṇaḥ| vyāyāmamadyastrīnityāḥ snēhyāḥ syuryē ca cintakāḥ||52||

svedyAH shodhayitavyAshca rUkShA vAtavikAriNaH| vyAyAmamadyastrInityAH snehyAH syurye ca cintakAH||52||

Those who are scheduled for sudation or purification therapies, those having dryness in body, those suffering for vata disorders, those doing exercise regularly, those drinking alcohol often, those indulged in sexual activities often and those suffering from mental stress are advised to undergo oleation therapy. [52]

Contraindications of oleation

संशोधनादृते येषां रूक्षणं सम्प्रवक्ष्यते| न तेषां स्नेहनं शस्तमुत्सन्नकफमेदसाम्||५३||

अभिष्यण्णाननगुदा नित्यमन्दाग्नयश्च ये| तृष्णामूर्च्छापरीताश्च गर्भिण्यस्तालुशोषिणः||५४||

अन्नद्विषश्छर्दयन्तो जठरामगरार्दिताः| दुर्बलाश्च प्रतान्ताश्च स्नेहग्लाना मदातुराः||५५||

न स्नेह्या वर्तमानेषु न नस्तो बस्तिकर्मसु| स्नेहपानात् प्रजायन्ते तेषां रोगाः सुदारुणाः||५६||

saṁśōdhanādr̥tē yēṣāṁ rūkṣaṇaṁ sampravakṣyatē| na tēṣāṁ snēhanaṁ śastamutsannaKaphamēdasām||53||

abhiṣyaṇṇānanagudā nityamandāgnayaśca yē| tr̥ṣṇāmūrcchāparītāśca garbhiṇyastāluśōṣiṇaḥ||54||

annadviṣaśchardayantō jaṭharāmagarārditāḥ| durbalāśca pratāntāśca snēhaglānā madāturāḥ||55||

na snēhyā vartamānēṣu na nastō Bastikarmasu| snēhapānāt prajāyantē tēṣāṁ rōgāḥ sudāruṇāḥ||56||

SamshodhanadRute yeShAM rUkShaNaM sampravakShyate| na teShAM SnehanaM shastamutsannaKaphaMedasAm||53||

abhiShyaNNAnanagudA nityaMandagnayashca ye| tRuShNAmUrcchAparItAshca garbhiNyastAlushoShiNaH||54||

annadviShashchardayanto jaTharAmagarArditAH| durbalAshca pratAntAshca SnehaglAnA madAturAH||55||

na snehyA vartamAneShu na nasto Bastikarmasu| SnehapAnAt prajAyante teShAM rogAH sudAruNAH||56||

Those advised for therapy without undergoing body purifications and those having excessively increased kapha and meda are not advised to undergo oleation. Those having excessive secretions from their mouth and rectum, suffering from frequent bouts of indigestion, those suffering from thirst and fainting, pregnant women, those having dryness of throat, who have aversion to food, who are sick or suffer from vomiting sensation, accumulation of ama in jathara (stomach), those who have been exposed to artificial poisons, those who are weak, those in whom body tissues have depleted, those who are exhausted by the use of sneha, those having alcohol intoxication, those undergoing nasya therapy (nasal administration of drugs) or basti (medicated enema) should not consume sneha. Oleation in such patients may cause serious ailments. [53-56]

Signs of inadequate, proper and excess oleation

पुरीषं ग्रथितं रूक्षं वायुरप्रगुणो मृदुः| पक्ता खरत्वं रौक्ष्यं च गात्रस्यास्निग्धलक्षणम्||५७||

वातानुलोम्यं दीप्तोऽग्निर्वर्चः स्निग्धमसंहतम्| मार्दवं स्निग्धता चाङ्गे स्निग्धानामुपजायते||५८||

पाण्डुता गौरवं जाड्यं पुरीषस्याविपक्वता| तन्द्रीररुचिरुत्केशः स्यादतिस्निग्धलक्षणम्||५९||

purīṣaṁ grathitaṁ rūkṣaṁ vāyurapraguṇō mr̥duḥ| paktā kharatvaṁ raukṣyaṁ ca gātrasyāSnigdhalakṣaṇam||57||

vātānulōmyaṁ dīptō'gnirvarcaḥ Snigdhamasaṁhatam| mārdavaṁ Snigdhatā cāṅgē snigdhānāmupajāyatē||58||

pāṇḍutā gauravaṁ jāḍyaṁ purīṣasyāvipakvatā| tandrīrarucirutkēśaḥ syādatiSnigdhalakṣaṇam||59||

purIShaM grathitaM rUkShaM vAyurapraguNo mRuduH| paktA kharatvaM raukShyaM ca gAtrasyASnigdhalakShaNam||57||

vAtAnulomyaM dIpto~AgnirvarcaH SnigdhamasaMhatam| mArdavaM SnigdhatA cA~gge SnigdhanAmupajAyate||58||

pANDutA gauravaM jADyaM purIShasyAvipakvatA| tandrIrarucirutkeshaH syAdatiSnigdhalakShaNam||59||

Table 1: Signs of Inadequate, proper and excess oleation are as follows:

Indication oleation Proper oleation Excess oleation
Hard faeces Proper movement of vata downwards Pallor
Dry faeces Increased digestive power Heaviness in body
Flatus not moving easily and softly Lubricated faeces which are soft and not well formed Lassitude
Reduced digestive power Softness and oleation of body Improperly formed faeces
Roughness and dryness in the body Stupor, Tastelessness, Nausea

Regimen before sneha consumption

द्रवोष्णमनभिष्यन्दि भोज्यमन्नं प्रमाणतः| नातिस्निग्धमसङ्कीर्णं श्वः स्नेहं पातुमिच्छता||६०||

पिबेत् संशमनं स्नेहमन्नकाले प्रकाङ्क्षितः| शुद्ध्यर्थं पुनराहारे नैशे जीर्णे पिबेन्नरः||६१||

dravōṣṇamanabhiṣyandi bhōjyamannaṁ pramāṇataḥ| nātiSnigdhamasaṅkīrṇaṁ śvaḥ snēhaṁ pātumicchatā||60||

pibēt saṁśamanaṁ snēhamannakālē prakāṅkṣitaḥ| śuddhyarthaṁ punarāhārē naiśē jīrṇē pibēnnaraḥ||61||

dravoShNamanabhiShyandi bhojyamannaM pramANataH| nAtiSnigdhamasa~gkIrNaM shvaH SnehaM pAtumicchatA||60||

pibet saMshamanaM SnehamannakAle prakA~gkShitaH| shuddhyarthaM punarAhAre naishe jIrNe pibennaraH||61||

On the day before administration of sneha, one should take warm, liquid diet in proper quantity. The food should not increase secretions, possess unctuousness or material with opposing properties.

If sneha is for the purpose of samshamana (pacification of dosha internally), it should be taken at the time of meals and if meant for shuddhi (purification) it should be given when food consumed in the previous night has been digested. [60-61]

Regimen during sneha consumption

उष्णोदकोपचारी स्याद्ब्रह्मचारी क्षपाशयः | शकृन्मूत्रानिलोद्गारानुदीर्णांश्च न धारयेत्||६२||

व्यायाममुच्चैर्वचनं क्रोधशोकौ हिमातपौ| वर्जयेदप्रवातं च सेवेत शयनासनम्||६३||

स्नेहं पीत्वा नरः स्नेहं प्रतिभुञ्जान एव च| स्नेहमिथ्योपचाराद्धि जायन्ते दारुणा गदाः||६४||

uṣṇōdakōpacārī syādbrahmacārī kṣapāśayaḥ | śakr̥nmūtrānilōdgārānudīrṇāṁśca na dhārayēt||62||

vyāyāmamuccairvacanaṁ krōdhaśōkau himātapau| varjayēdapravātaṁ ca sēvēta śayanāsanam||63||

snēhaṁ pītvā naraḥ snēhaṁ pratibhuñjāna ēva ca| snēhamithyōpacārāddhi jāyantē dāruṇā gadāḥ||64||

uShNodakopacArI syAdbrahmacArI kShapAshayaH| shakRunmUtrAnilodgArAnudIrNAMshca na dhArayet||62||

vyAyAmamuccairvacanaM krodhashokau himAtapau| varjayedapravAtaM ca seveta shayanAsanam||63||

SnehaM pItvA naraH SnehaM pratibhu~jjAna eva ca| SnehamithyopacArAddhi jAyante dAruNA gadAH||64||

Do’s and don’ts after sneha consumption

  1. Use warm water for all purposes
  2. Observe abstinence
  3. Sleep only at night
  4. Do not suppress the urge to pass feces, urine, flatus and belching
  5. Do not engage in physical exercises and rein in emotions, talking loudly, getting angry, or becoming upset, etc
  6. Do not get sleep or sit while exposed to snow, sunlight and breeze

One who after consuming sneha takes oily food and does not follow the aforementioned guidelines gets affected by severe diseases. [62-64]

Features according to bowel habits

मृदुकोष्ठस्त्रिरात्रेण स्निह्यत्यच्छोपसेवया| स्निह्यति क्रूरक्रोष्ठस्तु सप्तरात्रेण मानवः||६५||

गुडमिक्षुरसं मस्तु क्षीरमुल्लोडितं दधि| पायसं कृशरां सर्पिः काश्मर्यत्रिफलारसम्||६६||

द्राक्षारसं पीलुरसं जलमुष्णमथापि वा| मद्यं वा तरुणं पीत्वा मृदुकोष्ठो विरिच्यते||६७||

विरेचयन्ति नैतानि क्रूरकोष्ठं कदाचन| भवति क्रूरकोष्ठस्य ग्रहण्यत्युल्बणानिला||६८||

उदीर्णपित्ताऽल्पकफा ग्रहणी मन्दमारुता| मृदुकोष्ठस्य तस्मात् स सुविरेच्यो नरः स्मृतः||६९||

mr̥dukōṣṭhastrirātrēṇa snihyatyacchōpasēvayā| snihyati krūrakrōṣṭhastu saptarātrēṇa mānavaḥ||65||

guḍamikṣuRasaṁ mastu kṣīramullōḍitaṁ dadhi| pāyasaṁ kr̥śarāṁ sarpiḥ kāśmaryatriphalāRasam||66||

drākṣāRasaṁ pīluRasaṁ jalamuṣṇamathāpi vā| madyaṁ vā taruṇaṁ pītvā mr̥dukōṣṭhō viricyatē||67||

virēcayanti naitāni krūrakōṣṭhaṁ kadācana| bhavati krūrakōṣṭhasya grahaṇyatyulbaṇānilā||68||

udīrṇapittā'lpakaphā grahaṇī Mandamārutā| mr̥dukōṣṭhasya tasmāt sa suvirēcyō naraḥ smr̥taḥ||69||

mRudukoShThastrirAtreNa snihyatyacchopasevayA| snihyati krUrakroShThastu saptarAtreNa mAnavaH||65||

guDamikShuRasaM mastu kShIramulloDitaM dadhi| pAyasaM kRusharAM sarpiH kAshmaryatriphalARasam||66||

drAkShARasaM pIluRasaM jalamuShNamathApi vA| madyaM vA taruNaM pItvA mRudukoShTho viricyate||67||

virecayanti naitAni krUrakoShThaM kadAcana| bhavati krUrakoShThasya grahaNyatyulbaNAnilA||68||

udIrNaPitta~alpaKapha grahaNI MandamArutA| mRudukoShThasya tasmAt sa suvirecyo naraH smRutaH||69||

Individuals with soft bowel movement require a maximum dose of three days of acchapana (sneha alone) while those suffering from krura koshtha (hard bowel) require the seven-day long (maximum) dose regimen.

Individuals with soft bowel movement require the following as purgatives: jaggery, sugarcane juice, whey of curd, milk, water of curd, milk pudding, krishara (rice cooked with black gram), ghee, juice (decoction) of kashmari (Gmelina arborea), triphala (combination of Terminalia chebula, Terminalia bellirica and Emblica officinalis), pilu (Salvadora persica Linn.), draksha (Vitis vinifera Linn), warm water or fresh wine.

These do not help an individual suffering from hard bowel movement because of the prominence of vata in their grahani (duodenum). “Soft bowel individuals” have predominance of pitta and less kapha and vata in their duodenum, and hence gets purgation easily. [65-69]

Complications of improper sneha consumption and its treatment

उदीर्णपित्ता ग्रहणी यस्य चाग्निबलं महत्| भस्मीभवति तस्याशु स्नेहः पीतोऽग्नितेजसा||७०||

स जग्ध्वा स्नेहमात्रां तामोजः प्रक्षारयन् बली| स्नेहाग्निरुत्तमां तृष्णां सोपसर्गामुदीरयेत्||७१||

नालं स्नेहसमृद्धस्य शमायान्नं सुगुर्वपि| स चेत् सुशीतं सलिलं नासादयति दह्यते| यथैवाशीविषः कक्षमध्यगः स्वविषाग्निना||७२||

अजीर्णे यदि तु स्नेहे तृष्णा स्याच्छर्दयेद्भिषक्| शीतोदकं पुनः पीत्वा भुक्त्वा रूक्षान्नमुल्लिखेत्||७३||

न सर्पिः केवलं पित्ते पेयं सामे विशेषतः| सर्वं ह्यनुरजेद्देहं [१] हत्वा सञ्ज्ञां च मारयेत्||७४||

तन्द्रा [२] सोत्क्लेश आनाहो ज्वरः स्तम्भो विसञ्ज्ञता| कुष्ठानि कण्डूः पाण्डुत्वं शोफार्शांस्यरुचिस्तृषा||७५||

जठरं ग्रहणीदोषाः स्तैमित्यं वाक्यनिग्रहः| शूलमामप्रदोषाश्च जायन्ते स्नेहविभ्रमात्||७६||

तत्राप्युल्लेखनं शस्तं स्वेदः कालप्रतीक्षणम्| प्रति प्रति व्याधिबलं बुद्ध्वा स्रंसनमेव च||७७||

तक्रारिष्टप्रयोगश्च रूक्षपानान्नसेवनम्| मूत्राणां त्रिफलायाश्च स्नेहव्यापत्तिभेषजम्||७८||

udīrṇapittā grahaṇī yasya cāgnibalaṁ mahat| bhasmībhavati tasyāśu snēhaḥ pītō'gnitējasā||70||

sa jagdhvā snēhamātrāṁ tāmōjaḥ prakṣārayan balī| snēhāgniruttamāṁ tr̥ṣṇāṁ sōpasargāmudīrayēt||71||

nālaṁ snēhasamr̥ddhasya śamāyānnaṁ sugurvapi| sa cēt suśītaṁ salilaṁ nāsādayati dahyatē| yathaivāśīviṣaḥ kakṣamadhyagaḥ svaviṣāgninā||72||

ajīrṇē yadi tu snēhē tr̥ṣṇā syācchardayēdbhiṣak| śītōdakaṁ punaḥ pītvā bhuktvā rūkṣānnamullikhēt||73||

na sarpiḥ kēvalaṁ pittē pēyaṁ sāmē viśēṣataḥ| sarvaṁ hyanurajēddēhaṁ hatvā sañjñāṁ ca mārayēt||74||

tandrā sōtklēśa ānāhō jvaraḥ stambhō visañjñatā| kuṣṭhāni kaṇḍūḥ pāṇḍutvaṁ śōphārśāṁsyarucistr̥ṣā||75||

jaṭharaṁ grahaṇīdōṣāḥ staimityaṁ vākyanigrahaḥ| śūlamāmapradōṣāśca jāyantē snēhavibhramāt||76||

tatrāpyullēkhanaṁ śastaṁ svēdaḥ kālapratīkṣaṇam| prati prati vyādhibalaṁ buddhvā sraṁsanamēva ca||77||

takrāriṣṭaprayōgaśca rūkṣapānānnasēvanam| mūtrāṇāṁ triphalāyāśca snēhavyāpattibhēṣajam||78||

udIrNaPitta grahaNI yasya cAgnibalaM mahat| bhasmIbhavati tasyAshu SnehaH pIto~AgnitejasA||70||

sa jagdhvA SnehamAtrAM tAmOjaH prakShArayan balI| SnehAgniruttamAM tRuShNAM sopasargAmudIrayet||71||

nAlaM SnehasamRuddhasya shamAyAnnaM sugurvapi| sa cet sushItaM salilaM nAsAdayati dahyate| yathaivAshIviShaH kakShamadhyagaH svaviShAgninA||72||

ajIrNe yadi tu snehe tRuShNA syAcchardayedbhiShak| shItodakaM punaH pItvA bhuktvA rUkShAnnamullikhet||73||

na sarpiH kevalaM pitte peyaM sAme visheShataH| sarvaM hyanurajeddehaM hatvA sa~jj~jAM ca mArayet||74||

tandrA sotklesha AnAho jvaraH stambho visa~jj~jatA| kuShThAni kaNDUH pANDutvaM shophArshAMsyarucistRuShA||75||

jaTharaM grahaNIDoshaH staimityaM vAkyanigrahaH| shUlamAmapraDoshashca jAyante SnehavibhramAt||76||

tatrApyullekhanaM shastaM svedaH kAlapratIkShaNam| prati prati vyAdhibalaM buddhvA sraMsanameva ca||77||

takrAriShTaprayogashca rUkShapAnAnnasevanam| mUtrANAM triphalAyAshca SnehavyApattibheShajam||78||

Individuals with highly aggravated pitta in duodenum have excessive digestive strength, and therefore are able to digest or metabolize fat easily. Since their ojas gets displaced and their digestive power produces thirst, even great quantities of solid food consumption does not quench the fire stimulated by drinking fat, and therefore they do not find relief even with cold water. They suffer from the burning sensation of agni in them as if they have ingested snake venom.

When the sneha consumed does not undergo digestion and there is thirst then the physician should get it out through emesis, make the patient drink copious amounts of cold water, eat dry food items, and then make him vomit again.

Ghrita should not be taken when only pitta is increased and especially when there is ama in the body. Consuming ghrita in such cases could change the physical complexion of the person to that of pitta, lead to loss of consciousness or even death.

Stupor, nausea, flatulence, fever, rigidity of the body, skin diseases, itching, pallor, edema, hemorrhoids, tastelessness, diseases of stomach and duodenum, feeling of numbness, loss of speech, abdominal pain, and various diseases related with ama could be caused by improper administration of sneha. In these conditions, oleates should be ejected out of one’s system using emesis or sudation. The physician should then give mild purgation, after an interval of time, and also factoring in the severity of the disease and the condition and predisposition of the patient. Administering takrarishta, using dry food items, drinking cow urine and consuming triphala are some of the medicines recommended for cure of complications caused by the consumption of sneha. [70-78]

अकाले चाहितश्चैव मात्रया न च योजितः| स्नेहो मिथ्योपचाराच्च व्यापद्येतातिसेवितः||७९||

akālē cāhitaścaiva mātrayā na ca yōjitaḥ| snēhō mithyōpacārācca vyāpadyētātisēvitaḥ||79||

akAle cAhitashcaiva mAtrayA na ca yojitaH| sneho mithyopacArAcca vyApadyetAtisevitaH||79||

Sneha given at improper time, to those it does not suit, without considering proper dose, not following guidelines, and for extended duration causes complications. [79]

Prescription for therapeutic purgation and emesis after oleation

स्नेहात् प्रस्कन्दनं जन्तुस्त्रिरात्रोपरतः पिबेत्| स्नेहवद्द्रवमुष्णं च त्र्यहं भुक्त्वा रसौदनम्||८०||

एकाहोपरतस्तद्वद्भुक्त्वा प्रच्छर्दनं पिबेत्| स्यात्त्वसंशोधनार्थीये वृत्तिः स्नेहे विरिक्तवत्||८१||

snēhāt praskandanaṁ jantustrirātrōparataḥ pibēt| snēhavaddravamuṣṇaṁ ca tryahaṁ bhuktvā Rasaudanam||80||

ēkāhōparatastadvadbhuktvā pracchardanaṁ pibēt| syāttVasaṁśōdhanārthīyē vr̥ttiḥ snēhē viriktavat||81||

Snehat praskandanaM jantustrirAtroparataH pibet| SnehavaddravamuShNaM ca tryahaM bhuktvA Rasaudanam||80||

ekAhoparatastadvadbhuktvA pracchardanaM pibet| syAttVasamshodhanarthIye vRuttiH snehe viriktavat||81||

Therapeutic purgatives should be given three days after sneha consumption and during these three days warm and creamy (unctuous) mamsa rasa (mutton soup) and rice should be consumed. Therapeutic emesis should be administered a day after stopping sneha , and guidelines for purgation should be followed.[80-81]

Alternative recipes for persons averse to lipids

स्नेहद्विषः स्नेहनित्या मृदुकोष्ठाश्च ये नराः| क्लेशासहा मद्यनित्यास्तेषामिष्टा विचारणा||८२||

लावतैत्तिरमायूरहांसवाराहकौक्कुटाः| गव्याजौरभ्रमात्स्याश्च रसाः स्युः स्नेहने हिताः||८३||

यवकोलकुलत्थाश्च स्नेहाः सगुडशर्कराः| दाडिमं दधि सव्योषं रससंयोगसङ्ग्रहः||८४||

स्नेहयन्ति तिलाः पूर्वं जग्धाः सस्नेहफाणिताः| कृशराश्च बहुस्नेहास्तिलकाम्बलिकास्तथा||८५||

फाणितं शृङ्गवेरं च तैलं च सुरया सह| पिबेद्रूक्षो भृतैर्मांसैर्जीर्णेऽश्नीयाच्च भोजनम्||८६||

तैलं सुराया मण्डेन वसां मज्जानमेव वा| पिबन् सफाणितं क्षीरं नरः स्निह्यति वातिकः||८७||

धारोष्णं स्नेहसंयुक्तं पीत्वा सशर्करं पयः| नरः स्निह्यति पीत्वा वा सरं दध्नः सफाणितम्||८८||

पाञ्चप्रसृतिकी पेया पायसो माषमिश्रकः| क्षीरसिद्धो बहुस्नेहः स्नेहयेदचिरान्नरम्||८९||

सर्पिस्तैलवसामज्जातण्डुलप्रसृतैः शृ(कृ)ता| पाञ्चप्रसृतिकी पेया पेया स्नेहनमिच्छता||९०||

(शौकरो वा रसः स्निग्धः सर्पिर्लवणसंयुतः | पीतो द्विर्वासरे यत्नात् स्नेहयेदचिरान्नरम् ||१||)|

snēhadviṣaḥ snēhanityā mr̥dukōṣṭhāśca yē narāḥ| klēśāsahā madyanityāstēṣāmiṣṭā vicāraṇā||82||

lāvataittiramāyūrahāṁsavārāhakaukkuṭāḥ| gavyājaurabhramātsyāśca rasāḥ syuḥ snēhanē hitāḥ||83||

yavakōlakulatthāśca snēhāḥ saguḍaśarkarāḥ| dāḍimaṁ dadhi savyōṣaṁ Rasasaṁyōgasaṅgrahaḥ||84||

snēhayanti tilāḥ pūrvaṁ jagdhāḥ sasnēhaphāṇitāḥ| kr̥śarāśca bahusnēhāstilakāmbalikāstathā||85||

phāṇitaṁ śr̥ṅgavēraṁ ca tailaṁ ca surayā saha| pibēdrūkṣō bhr̥tairmāṁsairjīrṇē'śnīyācca bhōjanam||86||

tailaṁ surāyā maṇḍēna vasāṁ majjānamēva vā| piban saphāṇitaṁ kṣīraṁ naraḥ snihyati vātikaḥ||87||

dhārōṣṇaṁ snēhasaṁyuktaṁ pītvā saśarkaraṁ payaḥ| naraḥ snihyati pītvā vā saraṁ dadhnaḥ saphāṇitam||88||

pāñcaprasr̥tikī pēyā pāyasō māṣamiśrakaḥ| kṣīrasiddhō bahusnēhaḥ snēhayēdacirānnaram||89||

sarpistailavasāmajjātaṇḍulaprasr̥taiḥ śr̥(kr̥)tā| pāñcaprasr̥tikī pēyā pēyā snēhanamicchatā||90||

(śaukarō vā Rasaḥ Snigdhaḥ sarpirlavaṇasaṁyutaḥ | pītō dvirvāsarē yatnāt snēhayēdacirānnaram ||1||)| SnehadviShaH SnehanityA mRudukoShThAshca ye narAH| kleshAsahA madyanityAsteShAmiShTA vicAraNA||82||

lAvataittiramAyUrahAMsavArAhakaukkuTAH| gavyAjaurabhramAtsyAshca RasaH syuH Snehane hitAH||83||

yavakolakulatthAshca SnehaH saguDasharkarAH| dADimaM dadhi savyoShaM RasasaMyogasa~ggrahaH||84||

Snehayanti tilAH pUrvaM jagdhAH saSnehaphANitAH| kRusharAshca bahuSnehastilakAmbalikAstathA||85||

phANitaM shRu~ggaveraM ca tailaM ca surayA saha| pibedrUkSho bhRutairmAMsairjIrNe~ashnIyAcca bhOjanam||86||

tailaM surAyA maNDena VasaM Majjanameva vA| piban saphANitaM kShIraM naraH snihyati vAtikaH||87||

dhAroShNaM SnehasaMyuktaM pItvA sasharkaraM payaH| naraH snihyati pItvA vA saraM dadhnaH saphANitam||88||

pA~jcaprasRutikI peyA pAyaso mAShamishrakaH| kShIrasiddho bahuSnehaH SnehayedacirAnnaram||89||

sarpistailaVasaMajjataNDulaprasRutaiH shRu(kRu)tA| pA~jcaprasRutikI peyA peyA SnehanamicchatA||90||

(shaukaro vA RasaH SnigdhaH sarpirlavaNasaMyutaH | pIto dvirVasare yatnAt SnehayedacirAnnaram ||1||)|

Persons who dislike sneha, use fats daily, have soft bowel, can withstand strain, and who consume alcohol often are suitable for vicharana (therapy involving administration of fats mixed with other food items or preparations). Soup of meat of lava (common quail), taittira (black partridge), peacock, swan, boar, fowl, cow, goat, urabhra (wild sheep) and fish help in oleation.

A person with excessive dryness in body should consume the following: yava (barley), kola (Bengal gram), kulattha (two flowered dolichos) mixed with fats, jaggery and sugar, juice of dadima (pomegranate), curd added with vyosha ( combination of black pepper, ginger and long pepper), sesame consumed before food, phanita (molasses) added with fats, krishara (rice cooked along with sesame, mutton etc.) added with more fats, tila kambalika (buttermilk cooked with more of tila), phanita (molasses) and sringavera (ginger) or oil of sesame added to sura (beer), roasted meat of animals . He should take meals after this is digested.

Sesame oil mixed with scum of sura (beer) or muscle fat or bone marrow or milk added with phanita (molasses) brings about oleation of the persons of vata prakriti.

Warm milk directly from the udder of the cow added with fat, or milk added with sugar, or dadhisara (precipitate of curd) mixed with phanita (molasses), or panchaprasrita peya, or payasa (milk pudding) mixed with powders of masha (black gram) or many fats cooked with milk acts as an effective preparation for oleation.

Peya (gruel) prepared with one prasrita (96 gram) each of ghrita, oil, muscle fat, bone marrow and rice is known as panchaprasritiki peya. This peya, or drink, may be consumed by the person desirous of oleation. [82-90]

Special precautions in skin disease, urinary diseases and swellings

ग्राम्यानूपौदकं मांसं गुडं दधि पयस्तिलान्| कुष्ठी शोथी प्रमेही च स्नेहने न प्रयोजयेत्||९१||

स्नेहैर्यथार्हं तान् सिद्धैः स्नेहयेदविकारिभिः| पिप्पलीभिर्हरीतक्या सिद्धैस्त्रिफलयाऽपि वा||९२||

द्राक्षामलकयूषाभ्यां दध्ना चाम्लेन साधयेत्| व्योषगर्भं भिषक् स्नेहं पीत्वा स्निह्यति तं नरः||९३||

यवकोलकुलत्थानां रसाः क्षारः सुरा दधि| क्षीरसर्पिश्च तत् सिद्धं स्नेहनीयं घृतोत्तमम्||९४||

grāmyānūpaudakaṁ māṁsaṁ guḍaṁ dadhi payastilān| kuṣṭhī śōthī pramēhī ca snēhanē na prayōjayēt||91||

snēhairyathārhaṁ tān siddhaiḥ snēhayēdavikāribhiḥ| pippalībhirharītakyā siddhaistriphalayā'pi vā||92||

drākṣāmalakayūṣābhyāṁ dadhnā cāmlēna sādhayēt| vyōṣagarbhaṁ bhiṣak snēhaṁ pītvā snihyati taṁ naraḥ||93||

yavakōlakulatthānāṁ rasāḥ kṣāraḥ surā dadhi| kṣīRasarpiśca tat siddhaṁ snēhanīyaṁ ghr̥tōttamam||94||

grAmyAnUpaudakaM mAMsaM guDaM dadhi payastilAn| kuShThI shothI pramehI ca Snehane na prayOjayet||91||

SnehairyathArhaM tAn siddhaiH SnehayedavikAribhiH| pippalIbhirharItakyA siddhaistriphalayA~api vA||92||

drAkShAmalakaYushabhyAM dadhnA cAmlena sAdhayet| vyoShagarbhaM bhiShak SnehaM pItvA snihyati taM naraH||93||

yavakolakulatthAnAM RasaH kShAraH surA dadhi| kShIRasarpishca tat siddhaM SnehanIyaM ghRutottamam||94||

For oleation of patients suffering from skin diseases, edema and diabetes, one should not use meat of animals either domesticated, or of marshy regions or those living in water. Jaggery, curd, milk and sesame seeds are also to be avoided. They should be given suitable fat boiled with pippali, haritaki or triphala. The physician may prepare sneha by boiling it with draksha (grape), amalaki (emblica officinalis) or with sour curd added with vyosha (combination of black pepper, ginger and long pepper). The sneha processesd with decoction of yava (barley), kola (Bengal gram), kulattha (two flowered dolichos), yava kshara (alakali prepared from yava), sura(beer), curd, milk and ghee is best in these cases. [91-94]

Special precautions in diseases of reproductive system

तैलमज्जवसासर्पिर्बदरत्रिफलारसैः| योनिशुक्रप्रदोषेषु साधयित्वा प्रयोजयेत्||९५||

tailaMajjavasāsarpirbadaratriphalāRasaiḥ| yōniśukrapradōṣēṣu sādhayitvā prayōjayēt||95||

tailaMajjaVasasarpirbadaratriphalARasaiH| yoniShukrapradoSheShu sAdhayitvA prayOjayet||95||

Oil, bone marrow, muscle fat, ghrita boiled with a decoction of badara and triphala (combination of terminalia chebula, terminalia bellirica and emblica officinalis) should be used in diseases of female and male reproductive system. [95]

Role of digestive power (agni) in oleation

गृह्णात्यम्बु यथा वस्त्रं प्रस्रवत्यधिकं यथा| यथाग्नि जीर्यति स्नेहस्तथा स्रवति चाधिकः||९६||

यथा वाऽऽक्लेद्य मृत्पिण्डमासिक्तं त्वरया जलम्| स्रवति स्रंसते स्नेहस्तथा त्वरितसेवितः||९७||

gr̥hṇātyambu yathā vastraṁ prasravatyadhikaṁ yathā| yathāgni jīryati snēhastathā sravati cādhikaḥ||96||

yathā vāklēdya mr̥tpiṇḍamāsiktaṁ tvarayā jalam| sravati sraṁsatē snēhastathā tvaritasēvitaḥ||97||

gRuhNAtyambu yathA vastraM prasravatyadhikaM yathA| yathAgni jIryati SnehastathA sravati cAdhikaH||96||

yathA vA~a~akledya mRutpiNDamAsiktaM tvarayA jalam| sravati sraMsate SnehastathA tvaritasevitaH||97||

Just as a piece of cloth only absorbs water as much as it can and leaves off the excess, similarly agni (digestive power) digests fat as much as it can and expels the excess from the body. Just as a mud ball expels excess water without getting over-moistened when water is poured over it quickly, similarly the body expels fat that has been consumed very quickly. [96-97]

Use of salt to expedite oleation

लवणोपहिताः स्नेहाः स्नेहयन्त्यचिरान्नरम्| तद्ध्यभिष्यन्द्यरूक्षं च सूक्ष्ममुष्णं व्यवायि च||९८||

lavaṇōpahitāḥ snēhāḥ snēhayantyacirānnaram| taddhyabhiṣyandyarūkṣaṁ ca sūkṣmamuṣṇaṁ vyavāyi ca||98||

lavaNopahitAH SnehaH SnehayantyacirAnnaram| taddhyabhiShyandyarUkShaM ca sUkShmamuShNaM vyavAyi ca||98||

Sneha added with salt produces oleation quickly since salt is abhishyandi (produces more moisture in the tissues), not dry, subtle (enters minute pores), hot in potency and vyavayi (spreads to all parts quickly and then undergoes digestion). [98]

Sequence for oleation and sudation

स्नेहमग्रे प्रयुञ्जीत ततः स्वेदमनन्तरम्| स्नेहस्वेदोपपन्नस्य संशोधनमथेतरत् [१] ||९९||

snēhamagrē prayuñjīta tataḥ svēdamanantaram| snēhasvēdōpapanNasya saṁśōdhanamathētarat [1] ||99||

Snehamagre prayu~jjIta tataH svedamanantaram| SnehasvedopapanNasya Samshodhanamathetarat [1] ||99||

Oleation should be used first, then sudation. Only after oleation and sudation should the person undergo purification and other therapies. [99]


तत्र श्लोकः- स्नेहाः स्नेहविधिः कृत्स्नव्यापत्सिद्धिः सभेषजा| यथाप्रश्नं भगवता व्याहृतं चान्द्रभागिना||१००||

tatra shlokaH- SnehaH SnehavidhiH kRutsnavyApatsiddhiH sabheShajA| yathAprashnaM bhagavatA vyAhRutaM cAndrabhAginA||100||

tatra ślōkaḥ- snēhāḥ snēhavidhiḥ kr̥tsnavyāpatsiddhiḥ sabhēṣajā| yathāpraśnaṁ bhagavatā vyāhr̥taṁ cāndrabhāginā||100||

Sneha, procedures of oleation, complications, their treatments all have been described by Chandrabhagi (Atreya) as was questioned (by Agnivesha).[100]

इत्यग्निवेशकृते तन्त्रे चरकप्रतिसंस्कृते श्लोकस्थाने स्नेहाध्यायो नाम त्रयोदशोऽध्यायः समाप्तः||१३||

ityAgnivēśakr̥tē tantrē carakapratisaṁskr̥tē ślōkasthānē snēhādhyāyō nāma trayōdaśō'dhyāyaḥsamāptaḥ||13||

ityAgniveshakRute tantre carakapratisaMskRute shlokasthAne SnehadhyAyo nAma trayodasho~adhyAyaHsamAptaH||13||

Thus ends the thirteenth chapter by name Snehadhyaya in the Sutra Sthana of Agniveshatantra redacted by Charak.[13]

Tattva Vimarsha (Fundamental Principles)

  • There are two sources of lipids recommended for oleation: vegetable and animal origin. Ghrita (Clarified butter), oil (of sesame), vasa (muscle fat) and majja (bone marrow) are the best forms of lipids. [9-13]
  • These lipids are essential for pacifying dosha and maintaining equilibrium. Ghee or ghrita is the best processing media as it adopts the properties of the processed drug without losing its own properties. Ghee pacifies vata and pitta. Oil pacifies vata without aggravating kapha. Muscle fat is best for improving virility and helpful in healing fractures and dislocations. Bone marrow is specifically beneficial for enhancing strength of bones, bone marrow and shukra (sperms). [13-17]
  • The ideal season for administration of ghee is sharada (autumn), that for muscle fat and bone marrow is vaishakha (mid April to mid May), and the time for oil administration is pravrit (early rains). [18]
  • Lipid shall be administered according to its indication, at specific time, with correct vehicle, and for a specific duration. Otherwise improper administration may lead to severe disorders. [19-22]
  • The dose of lipids intended for purification treatment should be decided as per the digestive capacity of the recipient. The time taken for complete digestion of consumed lipid shall be considered. Thus, the dose is essentially personalized. [29]
  • The effects of lipids are dose dependent. The larger dose, medium dose and small dose have different pharmaco-dynamic effects and different indications. [30-40]
  • Ghee, oil, muscle fat and bone marrow have specific receptors that decide their indications, systemic effects and end results. [41-50]
  • Oleation therapy shall be administered until the desirable signs of proper oleation are observed. Specific diet and lifestyle shall be followed during oleation therapy, otherwise it leads to severe diseases. [57-64]
  • Duration for oleation therapy is three to seven days.
  • Oleation leads to aggravation of kapha dosha in body. The status of kapha is key factor for deciding time of therapeutic emesis or purgation. Therapeutic emesis shall be prescribed immediately after one day of completion of oleation therapy when kapha is in aggravated state. Therapeutic purgation shall be prescribed when the kapha is less in body i.e. after three nights of completion of oleation therapy. [80-81]
  • Oleation followed by sudation are essential procedures before body purification. These two are performed before purification in order to channelize dosha from shakha (periphery) to koshtha (gut). [99]

Vidhi Vimarsha(Applied Inferences)

Sources of Sneha

Sneha i.e. fats that are available today can be categorized in sthavara (vegetable origin) and jangama (animal origin) as a part of therapeutics or dietetics. E.g.

Sthavara Sneha (vegetable sources)

Mineral oil, olive oil, palm oil, soybean oil, rapeseed oil, sunflower oil, peanut oil, cottonseed oil, coconut oil, rice bran oil, grape seed oil, corn oil, hazelnut oil etc. Moreover, most of essential oils used in cosmetics and therapeutics are also sthavara type, as they are derived from sections of plants. For e.g. rose oil, clove oil, peppermint oil, cedarwood oil etc.

Jangama Sneha (Animal sources)

Cod liver oil, shark liver oil, all ghee, milk, milk products, curd, all types of meats, etc. are sources of animal fats.[verse 9-11]

Reasons for superiority of sesame oil

Sesame oil is considered the best among all oils because it provides strength and unctuousness in body. It is ushna (hot) in nature, possesses kapha-vatahara (pacifying kapha and vata dosha) properties, and is beneficial for voice and complexion. It also cures fractures and dislocations, purifies dhatu (body tissues) and vrana (wound). [Ka.Sa.Sutra Sthana. 22/7] Ongoing research also indicates that the rich presence of antioxidants and polyunsaturated fats in sesame oil could help control blood pressure.[8]

Due to high Vitamine E content[9] , Sesame oil is an antioxidant and improves skin health and complexion[10] while also lowering cholesterol levels.[11] Sesame oil also contains magnesium, copper, calcium, iron, zinc, and vitamin B6. Copper provides relief for rheumatoid arthritis. magnesium supports vascular and respiratory health.[12] Calcium helps prevent colon cancer, osteoporosis and migraine. Zinc promotes bone health. Clinical studies have shown that a sesame oil massage of infants improved their weight and length, as well as their mid-arm and mid-leg circumferences.[13]

Properties of Castor oil

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has categorized castor oil as "generally recognized as safe and effective" (GRASE) for over-the-counter use as a laxative with its major site of action in the small intestine (where it is digested into Ricinoleic acid).[14] At low doses, castor oil is readily absorbed. As the oral dose increases, percent absorption decreases and laxation occurs.[15] Castor oil is widely used in treatment of musculo-skeletal and spine disorders. It is considered useful in ama dominant conditions like rheumatoid arthritis where less absorption of sneha, vata alleviation and body purification are expected simultaneously. Castor oil in large doses is administered for therapeutic purgation. [verse 12]

Best Sneha and their Therapeutic Applicabilities

Ghrita (clarified butter / ghee)

Ghee is the best oleate due to prominence in its unctuousness. This property of fats is indicated by saponification value which is highest in ghee ( 225-235 )[16] as compared to sesame oil (188-193)[17],and animal fat (190-205)[18] etc. Samskara (processing) leads to transformation of inherent attributes of a substance. But this change is due to changes in the basic composition of a drug. Ghee has a unique quality to adopt properties of herbs processed with it without losing its own. If ghee is processed with drugs with nourishment properties, then it is indicated in degenerative diseases. If it is processed with drugs having hot and strong properties, then it is indicated in obstructive diseases. Therefore, it is considered as the best media for processing. One or the other medicated ghee preparation is indicated in almost all diseases. It pacifies vata due to snigdha guna (unctuous properties) and pitta due to madhura (sweet) and sheeta (cold) properties. [Cha.Sa.Nidana Sthana 1/39] It increases shukra and ojas due to similar properties.

Vasa (muscle fat)

Vasa i.e. intramuscular fat is a normal content of human body and its function is to lubricate the muscles while also serving the role of a fat store to be used up by the body when subjected to energy-intensive activities, such as physical workouts where it may contribute up to 20% of total energy turnover.[19] This is a possible reason for it to be recommended for individuals engaged in intensive physical acitivities, as well as for oleation therapies.

Majja (bone marrow)

Bone marrow contains about 96 percent fat. It contributes to 50 to 175 g of protein required by body each day. It has all the amino acids needed for good health. Each serving of marrow provides 3% of the calcium required each day. Calcium is commonly understood to strengthen bones and decrease risk of developing brittle, easily-broken bones as one gets older.[20] All these factors explain why bone marrow is beneficial, especially for one’s bone health. In Ayurvedic clinical practice, soup of bone marrow is prescribed for osteoporosis and degenerative disorders of the vertebrae.[verse 13-17]

Proper season and time for sneha consumption

The proper season for consumption of a sneha depends upon the physiological dominance of dosha in the body during that particular season, as well as the inherent properties of the sneha. On the basis of its inherent properties, ghee is indicated in sharada (autumn) season, when pitta dosha is increased. Muscle fat and bone marrow do not possess much hot or cold potency, and hence are advised in sadharana kala (i.e. seasons that are not very hot or cold), except in Chaitra month (mid-March to mid-April) when it may vitiate kapha dosha. Oils are the best medicines for vata, hence they are recommended for consumption in the pravritta (early rainy) season. These rules are to be followed universally according to seasonal and temperature variations. If this is not followed, then complications in oleation therapy could be observed.[verse 18-21]

Anupana (after consumption)

Most of the sneha gets stuck in upper gastrointestinal tract due to stickiness. The vehicles or after-drinks assure proper transport of the sneha (oleate or lipid or fat) to its intended site of digestion and absorption, and help in proper metabolism to increase bio-availability. However, those after-drinks should not affect the actions of the sneha. Warm water liquefies ghrita and facilitates its transport and absorption. Similar facilitation is seen in the use of lentil soup and scum of gruel after consuming oil and vasa-majja respectively. However, warm water is usually accepted as an after-drink in all cases of sneha consumption (with an exception of bhallatak and tuvaraka oil.)[verse 22]

Pravicharana (medium of administration)

Pravicharana implies the medium of administration of sneha advisable for those who need to undergo oleation therapy but are unfit to consume sneha as such. In such cases, optional modes of administration of oleation are suggested based on palatability of the oleate and the tolerance (and the digestive power) of the person. Ideally, food and external applications are considered as Pravicharana. Cooked rice, gruel, meat juices etc. mixed with fats are administered and external massage, unctuous enema, oil through nose and ears etc. are considered optional modes of administration of oleation therapy.[verse 23-25]

Acchapana (drinking fat alone) as a preferred mode for oleation

There are number of factors that affect the absorption of any drug[21] ,

  1. Total surface area available for absorption of fat
  2. Contact duration at the absorption surface
  3. Quantity of food in the gastro-intestinal Tract
  4. Gastrointestinal pH changes
  5. Gastric emptying time & rate
  6. Pancreatic and intestinal enzymes
  7. Bile acids & biliary function
  8. Gastrointestinal flora
  9. Drug/food interaction

Dose of sneha

The recommended dose of sneha would be different for every individual, depending upon the individual’s agni (digestive capacity), koshtha (bowel habit) etc. However, for ease in therapeutic applicability, specific doses in pala, karsha etc. are advised by Arunadatta in his commentary on Ashtangahridaya (Sutra Sthana Chapter 16/17). Two pala (96 ml) as minimum, four pala (192ml) as medium, and six pala (288ml) as maximum dose have been suggested. Sharangadhara (Madhyama Khanda 1/7) and Bhavamishra (Bhavaprakash I-79 iv. 6) suggest the quantities of one pala (48ml), three karsha (36ml) and two karsha (24ml) as the best, medium and least doses respectively.[verse 29-30]

In a research on 29 individuals, it is observed that increasing dose of fat after considering status of agni and bowel habit of individuals gives better results in oleation therapy. The onset of various symptoms of adequate oleation occur in a sequential manner which is helpful in predicting the duration of oleation and signs of oleation in gastro intestinal tract and peripheral tissues.[22]

Deciding suitable dose

Ayurveda acharyas have advised three dosage forms - high, medium and low doses. The following points need to be considered to determine the applicable dose for an individual:

  1. Severity of disease
  2. Habitual use of sneha in diet
  3. Agni (digestive power)
  4. Body strength
  5. Purpose of oleation
  6. Age
  7. Lifestyle

When a disease is severe or chronic in nature, it implies a “deep-seated” or a chronic case of (vitiated) dosha, blockages in microchannels, besides other imbalances and complications. In such conditions, the highest possible dose could be necessary to channelize and eject the dosha from its “seat” towards the gut. This quantity is beneficial for disorders of mind and sense organs. However, the patient needs to have strong digestive capacity and good strength of patient to be able to tolerate the highest dose. The body of the patient adapts to an increased fat intake (thereby increasing the rate of oxidation of fat) by two mechanisms:[23]

  1. Expansion of the fat stores or
  2. Maintenance of the glycogen stores in a lower range.

Thus, for those using sneha routinely in diet, oleation is possible only when natural habitual intake of fats is exceeded to overcome this adaptation. This is also the possible reason for daily increase in dose of sneha, so that body can not get adapted to the dose administered on day before. Seven days is maximum duration for sneha consumption because sneha is adapted by body easily after seven days (Cha. Si. 1/7). This is based on the fact that for purpose of energy balance body adapts to fat oxidation within seven days of increased fat intake.[24]

The medium dose is suitable when disease is of moderate severity, in person having soft bowel, moderate diet and strength. This dose is enough to reach all over body as there is less obstructions, no fat adaptation, hence produce least complications. This is the ideal dose for purification therapies.

Lowest dose of sneha consumption is fat substitute for diet. Thus, it holds more calorie contents, which strengthens body and is free from any complications. It can be used in old persons and children.[verse 31-51]

Formula for calculating strength of agni

A team of researcher postulated a formula for calculating strength of agni in oleation therapy for suitable dose [22] as below:

Bio-fire (Agni) Strength Index (BSI) = (Total Dose / Given Dose) × T.

T = Time taken for the digestion of Ghee.

Lesser the BSI, more will be the intensity of bio-fire.

Indications of oleation

Oleation and sudation are essential pre-purification therapies to channelize dosha from all body parts to the gut.

Sneha in regular exercise

Those doing regular exercise require high calorific diet to maintain body weight and healthy fat deposits in the body. Hence sneha consumption is necessary for them. Fats also serve as energy stores for the body, containing about 37 kilojoules of energy per gram (8.8 Cal/g)[25] (the highest in comparison to those of proteins and carbohydrates which provides 4 Cal/g of energy).[26] [27] In case of starvation, fats are broken down in the body to release glycerol and free fatty acids.[28] Glycerol is further converted to glucose by the liver and thus used as a source of energy.

Sneha in chronic alcoholics

Alcoholics gain weight because of excess energy intake with food and inhibition of fat oxidation from alcohol.[29] But chronic alcoholics (Madyanitya) show a lower body weight due to fat mass reduction.[30] This alteration could be due to induction of the non-alcohol dehydrogenase pathway, likely the microsomal ethanol oxidizing system.[31] Moreover, ethanol might have direct effects on human adipocytes.[32] Therefore, sneha is indicated in chronic alcoholics.

Sneha in excessive sex

Those who are involved in excessive sexual activity lose their ojass (vitality) leading to dhatukshaya (depletion of dhatu), vata aggravation and loss of unctuousness as mentioned in the pathology of rajayakshma. [Cha.Sa.Chikitsa Sthana 8/24-25] Hence oleation is required in such debilitated persons.

Contraindications of Sneha

Sneha is mainly contraindicated in conditions where there are excessive body secretions especially from mouth and rectum, ama formation, poor digestion, excess aggravation of dosha, and in cases where other therapies such as nasya and basti are being administered. Oleation therapy worsens the condition in these cases. [verse 52-56]

Signs of inadequate, proper and excess Sneha

Inadequate oleation does not pacify vata and disturbs agni leading to poor digestion. Proper oleation due to proper sneha improves digestion. The skin acts as a water resisting barrier to prevent flow of essential nutrients out of the body. The nutrients and oils that help hydrate the skin are covered by the outer layer of skin, the epidermis.[33] Softness or tenderness of skin is a result of proper oleation since snehana adds to the functional improvement of fat deposits of the body. Excess oleation causes improperly formed faeces, which may be due to increase in colorectal transit time as a result of excess unctuousness in gastrointestinal lumen. Stools are formed in the colon in the last phase of digestion. Through peristalsis, the muscles of the colon and the abdomen advance the liquid feces through the colon and compress the fecal matter into stool. During this process the colon extracts water from liquid feces as it passes down. The water is absorbed by the lumen, leaving the larger waste particles to be further tumbled along and formed into stools.[34] Due to excess oleation, blockage of microchnnels and villi occurs and absorptive function may become hampered leading to improperly formed stool. All other symptoms of excess oleation are due to increase in kleda (moisture) in body leading to heaviness, loss of digestive strength etc.[verse 57-59]

Do’s and Don’ts after Sneha Consumption

Guidelines to be followed after sneha consumption are intended:

  • To maintain digestive power at optimum quality
  • To avoid any physical exertion
  • To keep mental balance intact
  • To avoid any etiological factors for production of diseases.

Digestion and physical activities are associated with large and sometimes opposite changes in several physiological parameters. Gastric acid secretion during digestion causes increased levels of plasma bicarbonate ([HCO-3] (pl)), whereas activity leads to a metabolic acidosis with increased lactate and decrease in plasma bicarbonate.[35] Thus naturally to keep digestion of sneha at optimum, person needs to avoid excess physical exertion.

Emotions affect physiological processes and actions which are responsible for nutrient malabsorption and digestive health. Saliva becomes more acidic under stress, depression and negative emotions due to alteration in salivary digestive enzyme, ptyaline. The negative emotions also affect the production of pepsin in the stomach, enzyme release from the pancreas and also liver bile flow.[36] Anxiety, is responsible for "fight or flight" response, that takes up a lot of brain's resources, so to compensate it slows down parts of brain that are not as necessary, such as the muscles involved in digestion.[37] Anxiety can also cause low serotonin, and that means that some of the messengers that are normally traveling into body are possibly being created at a lower rate, leading to digestive disorders. During the fight or flight response, body creates massive amounts of adrenaline to give extra energy. In order to create that energy, adrenaline needs to take it from "sugar storage" - While adrenaline does this, body starts processing nutrients at rates that aren't ideal. It changes how body processes nutrients as well and could conceivably affect digestive health.[38] All these factors collectively may cause adverse effects of sneha due to impaired digestive power. Therefore, avoiding negative emotions is important in oleation therapy. Avoiding breeze, snow, sunlight etc. are a must in order to avoid any environmental infections or altered immune responses.[verses 62-64]

Bowel habits and duration of oleation therapy

Koshtha i.e. bowel habits are the outcome of dosha dominance in bowel. Vata, pitta and kapha dominance causes krura (hard), mridu (soft) and madhyam (moderate) koshtha (bowel habit) respectively. Vata due to its ruksha (dry) [Indhu on A.S. Sutra Sthana 1/ 11][39] properties causes fast absorption of sneha and also requires large doses and longer duration for complete oleation. Pitta has natural unctuousness associated with it due to its ushna (hot), sara (easy for dispertion), and drava (liquid) [A.H. Sutra Sthana 1/11][2] properties. These properties aid in the flow of sneha across all body parts and hence, an early push of dosha towards the bowel requires least dose and minimum duration. Kapha has similar properties as sneha. However, the bowel habit in a kapha person is moderate due to its sthira (stable) and sticky properties. [A.H. Sutra Sthana 1/12][2] Modern science also explains bowel habits, its effects and considers intestinal transit time responsible for it. 40-45 hours is the normal bowel or in Ayurvedic terminology madhyama koshtha person’s intestinal transit time.[40] If it stays in the gut for longer than that, fluid is re-absorbed into the body and the stool becomes harder and dryer. Body secretes about eight liters of fluid during the course of a day[41] —from the stomach, salivary glands and pancreas—to decompose food and push it through the digestive system. But if food passes through too quickly, there isn’t enough time for all of that liquid to get absorbed, and the stool emerges in a semi-solid or liquid state. Thus, it is the physiological differences based on intestinal transit time that decide the duration of oleation therapy. The nature of a food item or a drug ingested affects bowel movement and explains the differences mentioned above.[verses 65-69]

Complications of oleation therapy

Excessive thirst is a result of impaired digestion and absorption of lipids. Alpha-linolenic acid (an omega-3 fatty acid) and linoleic acid (an omega-6 fatty acid) are essential fatty acids supplied by almost all polyunsaturated fats.[42] But any defect in their absorption may cause deficiency leading to excessive thirst and dry skin, brittle hair &nails, sleep and attention problems.[43]

Bile, to some extent acts as a surfactant, helping to emulsify the fats in food. Without bile salts, most of the lipids in food would be excreted in feces, undigested leading to steatorrhea and vitamin deficiency.[44] Thus sama pitta (pitta that is not formed well) can be due to improper functions of biliary system that can not digest fats properly and produce severe symptoms. Moreover, fats boiled with some medicines may cause correction in this metabolic defect thus advocated in sama pitta condition.

All the diseases produced as complications are basically of kleda (moisture) dominant and ama dominant in nature, hence dry, amapachaka drugs are indicated in therapy. Medicated buttermilk is indicated to counter the complications of oleation therapy. [Cha.Sa.Sutra Sthana 2/30] Therapeutic emesis, therapeutic purgation are prescribed to remove undigested sneha from gut preventing further complications.[verse 70-79]

Shodhana (purification) after oleation

Vamana (therapeutic emesis) is done in utklishta kapha (therapeutically aggravated kapha by oleation) condition. Virechana (therapeutic purgation) is done when kapha is reduced in body. [Cha.Sa.Siddhi Sthana 1/ 8-9], Hence, the rest period for performing virechana after oleation is more (three days) than that of vamana.[verse 80-81]

Vicharana (alternative methods of fat administration)

Sneha consumption alone is generally associated with considerable degree of nausea. Also, persons living luxurious lifestyles hate therapeutic fat consumption. Those habitual to fatty diets need larger doses of fats which in turn results in nausea. Soft bowel persons are naturally have rapid intestinal transit rate. Due to this, less fat absorption occurs and excreted without digestion. Those who cannot tolerate exertion also suffer from nausea due to sneha administration. Those having alcohol addiction can not suddenly discontinue their habit and thus they need fats to be given in some form of alcoholic preparation.

Benefits of pravicharana in palatability and taste perception

  • Pravicharana can change the physical nature of sneha by addition of different substances.
  • It may change chemical property to some extent by samskara (transformation)
  • It can stimulate or inhibit cholecystokinin- pancreozymine secretions.
  • Also, sneha can be made more palatable and pleasant to mind by considering taste.

Some important properties of vicharana have been enumerated in the following table:

Table 2: Details of Pravicharana

Type of Pravicharana Properties Reference
Odana (boiled rice) laghu, balya, truptikara Yogaratnakara Purvakhanda Siddhannadipakaguna chapter
Vilepi (thick gruel) laghu, deepaniya, madhura, pathya, tarpana, hridya,vata pittahara [Su.Sa. Sutra Sthana 46/342][1]
Mamsarasa (meat soup) and mamsa (meat) prinana, vata pittahara, hridya, swasa, kasa, shrama,kshya hara, shukrakara [Su.Sa. Chikitsa Sthana 46/359-60][1]
Dugdha (milk) madhura, sheeta, snigdha, guru [Cha.Sa.Sutra Sthana 1/112]
Dadhi (curd) madhura, guru, vatahara, pitta kapha vardhaka, agnimandyakara, amla Yogaratnakara Purvakhanda Siddhannadipakaguna chapter
Yavagu (thick gruel) grahi, vatanashaka, balya, tarpana [Ka.Sa. Khila Sthana 4/76]
Supa (soup of green leafy vegetables) laghu, grahi, kapha pittahara Yogaratnakara Purvakhanda Siddhannadipakaguna chapter
Yusha (pulses soup) deepana, rochana, agnivardhaka, praswedajanana,tridoshashamaka [Ka.Sa. Khila Sthana 4/15]
Khada (cooked buttermilk)- Kambalika (Preparation of Sesame with curd, oil, salt etc.) ruchikara, ushna, laghupaki, vata kaphahara, hridya [Su.Sa. Chikitsa Sthana 46/376][1]
Saktu (roasted flour of barli, horse gram etc.) saktu mantha - sadyobalakara, pipasa, shramanashana, mala-doshanulomana, ruksha [Su.Sa. Chikitsa Sthana 46/386-87][1]
Madya (alcohol) amla, ushna, vatanulomana, kaphahara [Cha.Sa. Sutra Sthana 27/178][1]
Leha (confections) madhura, guru [A.S. Sutra Sthana 25/20][39]

In patients suffering from skin diseases, edema, diabetes, meat of domesticated animals and animals from marshy lands , or of aquatic animals is contraindicated. Moreover, jaggery, curd, milk and sesame are also not suitable for vicharana. All these articles increase moisture content in body causing aggravation of symptoms.

Mode of action of sneha

Sneha acts as a solvent and it increases apyamsha (liquid content) of the body which ultimately leads to utklesha (aggravation of dosha for removal).[verse 96-97]

I. Action as a solvent

Fats acts as good solvent for many metabolic wastes and it enters the cells easily because cell membrane is made up of phospholipids.[45] Compared to other non-unctous substances, fat materials stays in the body for a stipulated period without causing any harm and also possesses better permeability. The large quantity of fats administered before purification therapies do not undergo digestion and metabolism cycle because the sneha is intended to increase and channelize dosha towards koshtha.

According to Sushruta, the disease occurs due to dislodgement of vitiated doshas in the channels during their circulation in the body. [Su.Sa.Sutra Sthana 24/10][1] Sneha administered internally reaches microchannels and acts as a solvent to remove the obstruction by dissolving doshas in it, resulting in the removal of obstructions in microchannels, which is one of the important steps in the treatment.

II. Increase in the apyamsha (liquid content) of the body

This particular phenomenon should be understood regarding vriddhi i.e. increase in the apyamsha i.e. liquid content of the body. This leads to utklesha and can be called as transient increase in rasa (body fluids) and kleda (moisture). Sneha has the predominance of apa mahabhuta, which is corroborated by the specific qualities. [Cha.Sa.Sutra Sthana 22/15], [A.H.Sutra Sthana 1/11][2] and it is hydrophilic in nature. After proper snehana, all the cells of body become completely saturated with fats. Then the fat material comes out of the cell to extra-cellular fluid by osmosis. So, due to the aqueous properties of sneha and liquefied waste brought from the tissues, the levels of fatty acids etc. increase in the blood resulting in the high plasma volume. To keep up the equilibrium of the normal plasma, the extra amount of liquid from it, reaches the koshtha for excretion. This is called as anu pravana bhava. Later on when emetics or purgatives are administered, this increased amount of the body fluids are evacuated by which the vitiated doshas and in-excreted malas also expelled out resulting in the radical cure of the disease. By the combined effect of oleation and sudation, excessive increase of dosha liquification of dosha, digestion of dosha, opening of micro-channels and control of vata occurs so that, the doshas come to the kostha by Anupravana Bhava, then they are expelled out through nearest route by proper shodhana karma. [Cha.Sa.Sutra Sthana 28/33]

Sadya snehana (instant oleation) and salt with fats for early oleation

Instant oleation is required in some conditions requiring immediate purification therapy. In exacerbation of asthma sadya snehana is done and vamana is performed to remove avarana (obstruction) by kapha. Salt is having hygroscopic nature,[46] thus when consumed with fats it increases moisture content in the body, that eventually results in early oleation.[verse 89-98]

Common method followed for oleation purpose before purification therapies

Practically approximately 30 ml of sneha is administered on first day and based upon duration required for its digestion the dose of sneha to be administed is decided, which is the dose of sneha consumption on last day. For e.g. if a hard bowel person gets appetite after 2 hours of 30 ml sneha drinking and requires medium dose oleation (sneha dose which is digested in 12 hours) then the dose on last day will be approximately 180 ml, which is achieved by gradually increasing doses of sneha in seven days.


The research works carried out on oleation therapies are as follows:

  • Venkataramana B.S. (1967): Roga- Marga and Shodhana poorva Snehana, Department of Kayachikitsa, I.P.G.T. & R.A., Jamnagar.
  • Goyel Shyamlal (1970): Acchapana Vimarsha, Department of Kayachikitsa, I.P.G.T. & R.A., Jamnagar.
  • Badve Varsha (2000): A Clinical study on standardization of Shodhanartha Abhyantara Snehapanam, Department of Kayachikitsa, I.P.G.T. & R.A., Jamnagar.
  • Vasant C. Patil (2006): Further clinical study on standardization of Shodhanartha Snehapana, Department of Kayachikitsa, I.P.G.T. & R.A., Jamnagar.
  • Gauri Vaidya (2009): an observer blind clinical study on standardization of Shodhanartha Snehapana w.s.r. to Sneha PraVicharana, Department of Panchakarma, I.P.G.T. & R.A., Jamnagar.
  • Raval K. R. (1987): The study of Virechana Poorvaka Snehana in Pandu Roga. Department of Kayachikitsa. Govt. Akhandanand Ayurvedic college, GAU, Ahmedabad.
  • Ashvini Kumar M (2002): A Study on Shodhananga Arohana and Sadyo Snehana, Department of Panchakarma, SDM College of Ayurveda, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Hassan.
  • Alva Gauthama (2002): A clinical study to evaluate the role of Plain ghee and Panchatikta ghee as Poorva Karma of Virechana w.s.r. to Ekakushtha. Department of Panchakarma, SDM College of Ayurveda, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Hassan.
  • Mangalagi S.G. (1979): A Study on Abhyantara Sneha w.s.r to Virechana, Govt. Ayurvedic Medical College, Mysore.

Scope for further research

  • To improve palatability of fats, scientific research on the alternative methods of consumption i.e vicharana must be carried out and the number of vicharana should be increased based upon contemporaneous food preparations.
  • There is a wide scope in research regarding changes in the properties of fats when boiled with other substances i.e Samskara.
  • Therapeutic effects of oleation with fats used today should be ascertain clinically so that they can be accepted as medicinal sneha.
  • Combination of fats is an area least evaluated and has scope for improvement in fat properties.
  • Research is needed for standardization of dose and gradation of oleation or unctuousness.
  • It is important to study effect of instant oleation (Sadyo snehana), in large dose (Avapeedaka Sneha), processed fats (Avartita Sneha) and administration after meals (Auttara bhaktika Sneha).

Related Chapters

Snehana (unction therapy), Langhanabrimhaniya Adhyaya, Kalpana Siddhi Adhyaya, Snehavyapat Siddhi Adhyaya,

Panchakarma, Meda dhatu, Shukra dhatu, Ojas

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