Sesame Oil, Coconut Oil, Castor Oil, Mustard Oil – Comparison

In traditional Ayurvedic text books, we find a lot of medicated oils. All such herbal oils (Taila) are prepared with the base of sesame oil. Whenever oil (taila) is referred, in a Sanskrit verse of a formula, by default, sesame oil is taken. This is because, it is mentioned that, “Tailam yat Tilodbhavam” which means, Taila is one which is obtained from Sesame (Tila).  However, Sarshapa  taila (mustard oil), Eranda taila (Castor oil) and Narikela Taila (Coconut oil) also have huge therapeutic importance in Ayurveda.  

Comparison chart

CriteriaSesame oilCastor oil Mustard oilCoconut oil
TasteSweet, bitter astringentSweet, bitterPungent mixed sweetSweet
QualityWarm, Severe (penetrative)Heavy, warm, motile, minute bad odoredLight, warm, severe (penetrative)Heavy, cold, mild, slow, thick and dense
Effect on TridoshaPacifies Kapha vataPaittic and vata pacifierImbalances Pitta, Balances Vata KaphaIncreases Kapha
Therapeutic actionHair tonic, Tonic (rejuvenator), Complexion enhancer, wound healer,  Fecal bulk enhancer, Brain tonicTonic , laxative, RejuvenatorWormifuge, Rubificient, Anti inflammatoryHair tonic,shin smoothener and body soothening agent
IndicationVatic disorders (Neuro muscular disease), Worm, Itching, Ulcers, Premature graying of hair.Worm infestation, Abdominal colic, Skin diseases, Hernia, Gaseous tumor, Abdominal disorders, intermittent fever, Rhumatoid arthritis ,constipationWorm infestation, Skin diseases, Itching, Stoutness, Headache,Hair fall,Burning of the eyes, premature greyness of the hair,eye disorders etc
Contra indicationPitta disorders, Blood borne diseasesDiarrhoea, Ameobic dysentery, fungal infectionsBlood borne disordersIndigestion and diarrhoea
Formulation contains the respective oilKsheerabala taila Gandha taila Maha narayana taila Masha taila etcVatari guggulu Simhanada guggulu etcAshta katwara taila Ayama kanjika etcNeelabhringadi keram Kayyunyadi keram Neelinyadi keram Chemparutyadi keram etc

Sesame oil home remedies

1.Sesame oil mouth gargling helps to relieve the recurrent complaint of mouth ulcers.
2. Sesame oil is taken with a pinch of table salt and warmed slightly. This is applied to the joints once in two days. This prevents from the joint pain which is commonly manifested in late 50s.

Castor oil home remedies

1. Daily application of castor oil to the sole, before going to bed improves the quality of sleep.
2. Calcified lime(dehydrated lime) is mixed with equal amount of castor oil and fine paste is made. Application of this over the abscess helps in early maturation of the abscesses.

oils - comparison

Mustard oil home remedies

1. Mustard oil is mixed with lemon juice and instilled to the lesions of kiolonychia (nail bed infections). 5-8 days application helps to relieve the pain effectively.
2. In case of severe headache, mustard oil is added with a pinch of salt and mixed well. 2 drops of this mixture is instilled to both the nostrils. This relieved the headache immediately.

Coconut oil home remedies

1. Coconut oil is mixed with equal amount of lime water(supernatant liquid obtained on mixing 2 gram of calcified lime powder mixed with 480 ml of water.) and rubbed well.This becomes a liquid viscous oily emulsion. This is applied over the area of burn wounds. It helps to subside the burning sensation immediately.

2. Hibiscus flowers (white) are taken and cooked with coconut oil, till complete evaporation of moisture. This is applied to the scalp. This simple oil helps to arrest the hair fall and  promotes thick and dense hair.

Oils – fats – blocking or opening the body channels –

Any oil or fat – associated with coolant property, can cause blocking, constipation.

Oil or fat – associated with hotness – like dishes freshly made and in hot condition, added with a little spices of consuming hot water after taking the oil or fat – does not cause constipation.

Article by Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD(Ayu), PhD (Ayu) and Dr Hebbar

Replacing Sesame oil with Coconut oil (Video)

97 comments on “Sesame Oil, Coconut Oil, Castor Oil, Mustard Oil – Comparison

  • kumari

    12/08/2014 - 3:39 am

    Interested in castor oil and its effectiveness at dispelling intestinal worms. Do you comment on this type of question?

    Reply to comment
  • kamalkishore pandey

    12/08/2014 - 11:12 am

    Good information for all those who believe in ayurvedic preparations and their healing properties.

    Reply to comment
  • R Gopalan

    13/08/2014 - 5:31 pm

    Your article on sesame, castor, mustard and coconut oil is highly educative. Salt is not getting dissolved in sesame oil. How to do this ?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      11/10/2014 - 10:32 pm

      Hi, Salt – Sodium chloride does not dissolve in oil.

      Reply to comment
  • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

    14/08/2014 - 4:47 pm

    Thanks 🙂

    Reply to comment
  • devendra

    14/08/2014 - 5:58 pm

    Hi Dr, very useful information. Can we use Sesame oil to arrest falling of hairs ?



    Reply to comment
  • Asha

    20/08/2014 - 11:13 pm

    please publish article about eczema cure in natural way

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      21/08/2014 - 11:05 pm

      Coming up shortly.

      Reply to comment
  • mykmth

    06/10/2014 - 11:03 am

    Very informative article.Thank you.Can you suggest some massage oil for women after delivery?also Wish to know “Kada “given after delivery ,to the woman.

    Reply to comment
  • Vijay Kumar

    06/01/2015 - 10:26 am

    which oil is good for body massage

    Reply to comment
  • Vinod

    19/02/2015 - 7:41 pm

    I have heard that for wrestlers it is preferable to take daily massage with mustard seed oil (brassica nigra) than sesame seed oil. What are your thoughts Dr?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      25/04/2015 - 9:11 pm

      Hi, I would recommend sesame oil massage instead of mustard oil. Mustard oil is hot and many not be ideal during summer and in people with Pitta increase. Usually, in wrestlers, there will be slight increase in Vata and Pitta Dosha. So, Sesame oil is ideal.

      Reply to comment
  • vidyasagar

    28/02/2015 - 3:19 pm

    Hi sir, How to uses castor oil and sesame oil mixing to making how?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      08/05/2015 - 9:37 pm

      Castor oil and sesame oil can be mixed together and used for massage.

      Reply to comment
  • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

    18/04/2015 - 11:28 am

    For facial massage, almond oil is better.

    Reply to comment
  • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

    18/08/2015 - 9:25 pm

    Thanks. You can.

    Reply to comment
  • Mahi

    19/09/2015 - 7:33 am

    Wow! Nice information… I have a question regarding combining of oils..
    Can we mix
    Mustard oil
    Coconut oil
    Olive oil
    Almond oil and
    Castor oil together and use it on scalp or hair???
    Will it be safe???

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      19/09/2015 - 1:34 pm

      You can mix them and use.

      Reply to comment
      • Gita

        24/09/2016 - 2:08 pm

        Dr Hebbar you said in your hair oil webinar not to mix more than two hair oils. Are you saying the above are ok to mix because they are non-herbal oils?

        Reply to comment
        • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

          25/09/2016 - 9:51 pm

          Hi, Ideally it is best to avoid mixing 3 or more single oils. But some ayurveda doctors are not averse to it.
          When it comes to poly-herbal oils – if we mix more than 2 herbal oils, it becomes very difficult to ascertain the Veerya, Vipaka, Dosha effect of that combination due to multiple herbs. Hence the advice

          Reply to comment
  • Rajinder Kumar Singla

    28/11/2015 - 4:41 pm

    Please tell if sesame oil can be used for cooking

    Reply to comment
  • Lokesh

    14/12/2015 - 7:41 pm

    Sir hair fall rokne or faster hair growth ke liye konsa tel best hoga?? Or 1 week me kitne din use krna chahiye??

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      14/12/2015 - 11:24 pm

      Hair fall rokne ke liye Bhringaraj hair oil Ya Amla hair oil behetar hai. week me 2 – 3 baar istemaal keejiye.

      Reply to comment
  • Praveen A V

    07/01/2016 - 4:49 am

    Very good information. Thank you.

    Reply to comment
  • Ravindra

    14/01/2016 - 7:36 pm

    In north people generally use Mustard oil for cooking , please give your comments for the effects of mustard oil when used for cooking.

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      14/01/2016 - 10:27 pm

      Mustard oil is hot in nature, and aids in digestion. Hence, if people are accustomed to use it in cooking, no harm in continuing the same.

      Reply to comment
  • jassi

    29/01/2016 - 1:25 am

    Dr J V hebber good information by you sir can you tell me we can take Castor oil and sesame oil can be mixed together and take 1 spoon daily with milk or juice

    Reply to comment
    • sudhakar

      07/09/2021 - 10:39 am

      Milk should not be mixed with anything.

      Reply to comment
  • nelsonsingh

    06/02/2016 - 2:22 pm

    Which is the Best oil for Cooking & consumption among those four ??

    Reply to comment
  • Ishtiyaq

    18/03/2016 - 10:42 am

    Sir for hair loss which medicine is used & for hair growth,what type of food we have to avoids

    Reply to comment
    • Dr Malini Bhat

      18/03/2016 - 2:07 pm

      Hello sir, Kesha vardhana – Hair growth promoters
      For the promotion of growth of hair,the medicaments rich in snigdha (unctuousness), guru(heaviness), manda(slowness), sheeta(cold) and sthira(stable) qualities are essential.

      Madhura(sweet), amla(sour) and slight kashaya(astringent) dominant substances contribute this benefit.If any drug with other taste and quality are to be included for added benefits,it is taken care that it is compensated well by the other herbal ingredients. Usually, the sesame oil or coconut oil which are used as the bases serve this purpose well.

      For more Information do check this link:

      Reply to comment
  • Vikas Khatri

    21/05/2016 - 8:11 pm

    Almond, bhringraj, coconut, amla, mustard or sesame oil..
    Which is best to prevent hair loss and thinning and to regrow hairs.

    Reply to comment
    • Dr Malini Bhat

      23/05/2016 - 9:32 am

      Hello sir,

      1. Coconut oil for Kesha sanjanana i.e origin of hair; Kesha vardhana – Hair growth promoters
      2. Amla – Kesha vardhana – Hair growth promoters and Kesha ranjana – restoring natural hair colour
      3. Bhringaraja – Kesha ranjana

      Reply to comment
  • Ravi

    06/07/2016 - 8:40 am

    Hi can we mix virgin coconut oil and sesame oil for cooking?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      07/07/2016 - 9:55 pm

      There are many oils in which coconut oil and sesame oils are used in combination base. Hence, it is not against to Ayurveda principle. It can be done.

      Reply to comment
  • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

    27/07/2016 - 10:55 pm

    castor+ olive + Triphaladi taila make a good combination.

    Reply to comment
  • ssahoo

    28/07/2016 - 3:18 pm

    Thank you sir….but what are the roles of olive and triphaladi tail on hair?? Can you please explain in details. In what proportionate should I mix these 3 oils? Should I make it little warm before putting it in hair? Oils of which brand should I use??? Please reply…

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      28/07/2016 - 6:28 pm

      All three can be mixed in equal proportions and used for head massage, 30 minutes before bath, at least thrice weekly.

      Reply to comment
  • Puru

    26/08/2016 - 11:20 pm

    Between mustard,olive,sesame,coconut,almond which would be good for dandruff prevention and receding hair line?please mention if any combination of these would be ideal.

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      30/08/2016 - 10:18 pm

      Sesame oil and almond oilve combination makes sense.

      Reply to comment
  • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

    16/09/2016 - 9:20 pm

    Kuntalakanti tailam or
    Ayyappala Keratailam

    Reply to comment
  • shanti

    27/09/2016 - 9:24 am

    namaste Thanks for this informative article. I want to do oil pulling to cure my rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. I have heard that coconut oil is good for these illnesses. Is the commonly available Parachute coconut oil good for oil pulling? What method of oil pulling do you recommend? Dhanyavad Shanti

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      29/09/2016 - 4:49 pm

      Namaste! Coconut oil or sesame oil can be used for oil pulling. Learn how to do it here –

      Reply to comment
  • Lach

    28/10/2016 - 10:16 pm

    I have lots of grey hair. I have sinus too. Could you please suggest a good hair oil to reverse grey hair

    Reply to comment
  • rahul

    30/10/2016 - 11:58 am

    Which oil is better for eyelashes growth? Sesame or castor oil?

    Reply to comment
  • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

    10/11/2016 - 12:26 pm

    You can use mustard + castor oil combination.

    Reply to comment
  • Sagar

    05/02/2017 - 12:17 am

    sir. nmste mere sir k hair 50% tut gy h bich mey se tho sir khnsa oil best rhega ya or koi tarika h.
    plz sugesst me.

    Reply to comment
  • sagar khatri

    05/02/2017 - 12:35 am

    I have hairfall problem to much and have so much dandruff on my head. what should i do ?
    which oil is best , which medicine is best , which shampoo is best , ?
    or another reason plz tell me.
    50% hairfall from my head at middle of the head
    plz sugesst me dr. ????

    Reply to comment
  • Rahul

    25/02/2017 - 2:25 pm

    Sir pls share info about groundnut(peanut) oil. Some say its ushna some say its sheetal. Any mentions in our texts Doc? And if ushna will it be slightly pittakara along with it being vatakara and kaphakara?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      19/03/2017 - 5:13 pm

      Peanut is slightly hot. It balances Vata Dosha.

      Reply to comment
  • Arjun Kalale

    05/03/2017 - 9:54 am

    Dear Sir, the information given is very useful. I have a very hot body where pimples arise if it is more.. Which oil I can use for the head bath to cool the body.
    Thank you.

    Reply to comment
  • sachin sharma

    11/03/2017 - 4:28 pm

    Some one told me, for abhyangam, if skin type is dry we are not suppose to apply sesame oil, it will make skin more dry.
    Coconut oil is best for dry skin. Is it true?

    Reply to comment
  • Maah

    19/03/2017 - 11:47 pm

    The development of dark, copious, long, fluffy hairs on chest, belly, thighs, calves, and face of the body, where once there were none, is quite shocking and dismaying for women in their post menopause years. Is there an oil which, on application would arrest this change? Thank you.

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      20/03/2017 - 6:21 pm

      Shatavari capsule orally and Nalpamaradi tailam is (somewhat) useful.

      Reply to comment
  • Rohit

    12/05/2017 - 1:57 am

    Hello Dr Hebbar,

    I am trying to get more insight to the type of cooking oil that should be used for cooking.

    Have you published any article on oils prescribed for cooking food in Ayurveda and how should the oil be used?

    Thank you very much for all that you have published till now. Your site is wonderful.

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      04/06/2017 - 4:01 pm

      Hi, Ayurveda recommends sesame oil, mustard oil, coconut oil for cooking.

      Reply to comment
  • Disha

    08/06/2017 - 5:50 pm

    Can we mix sesame oil,coconut oil and Amla Oil so as to prevent grey hair and promote healthy hair growth.

    Reply to comment
  • ganga

    04/07/2017 - 3:44 pm


    Reply to comment
  • shivam yadav

    28/07/2017 - 12:56 am

    Sir which oil is best coconut oil or mustard oil or patanjali kesh kanti.oil for our hairs….Sir pls rply me

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      28/07/2017 - 4:18 pm

      Coconut oil or Patanjali Kesh Kanti oil is good for hairs.

      Reply to comment
  • Chris Kabiru

    17/08/2017 - 9:04 pm

    Hi. I produce cold pressed Sesame oil, here in Kenya, and wonder which has more medicinal and superior?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      18/08/2017 - 11:13 am

      Cold pressed is also good to use.

      Reply to comment
  • Midhun

    27/08/2017 - 8:01 pm

    Sir which is the best oil for hair mustard oil or coconut oil because I have been using coconut oil for a long time I have hair loss as well as dandruff, what would be your suggestions

    Thank you !

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      31/08/2017 - 4:58 pm

      Hi, sesame oil is better

      Reply to comment
  • archana

    18/09/2017 - 11:56 am

    Hi sir,which oil is good to avoid strech marks during pregnancy.

    Reply to comment
  • Karthik J

    07/11/2017 - 5:42 pm

    Can you list the best cooking oil season wise

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      15/11/2017 - 10:03 pm

      Summer – coconut oil
      Rest of the season – sesame oil.

      Reply to comment
  • Chaitali

    09/11/2017 - 12:54 am

    1)Is olive oil heating or cooling for the body?

    2)It is said that saturated fat is bad for health.Then why coconut oil being so high in saturated fat is recommended for cooking?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      17/11/2017 - 10:49 am

      Olive oil is slightly heating.
      Ayurveda recommends sesame oil as the first choice for internal and external application.

      Reply to comment
  • Mishtu

    09/11/2017 - 8:25 pm

    Which is more warming between mustard oil & sesame oil?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      12/11/2017 - 8:29 pm

      Both are warming. Between the two, mustard oil is more warming

      Reply to comment
  • Ishwar

    19/11/2017 - 4:47 pm

    Hello, Is sunflower oil fine for cooking? If so, for which constitution does it suit best?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      28/11/2017 - 12:30 pm

      As per Ayurveda, sesame oil is best one. Sunflower oil is good for all body types.

      Reply to comment
  • veena

    06/12/2017 - 2:01 am

    I have split ends on the top of my head along with dry and frizzy a friend of mine suggested a hair mask to be applied twice a week before head bath. Please correct the quanity and add or eliminate the ingredients. Also, what is the ideal time to leave the hair mask on? 1 hour? Should I wash hair with just cold water or would you suggest using soapnut juice or something similar?

    1 egg
    2 tsp almond oil
    1 tsp olive oil
    1 tsp sesame oil or mustard oil
    1/2 tsp castor oil.

    Please reply.

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      11/12/2017 - 10:54 am

      combination looks just fine.
      Apply 1 hour before hair wash, preferably in the morning. Wash with lukewarm water.

      Soapnut juice is better than shampoo.

      Reply to comment
  • Ajar

    07/01/2018 - 5:57 pm

    Which oil is best for pacifying vata?

    Reply to comment
  • Nithya

    18/03/2018 - 2:02 am

    Which one is best for body heat?

    Reply to comment
  • c

    14/05/2018 - 8:00 pm

    Hi, I can’t find you talking about olive oil. I think it is like sesame oil, but with some pungency too. When cooked the bitterness and astringency are mellowed out or lost. It affects the liver and throat. Some olive oil is very bitter and astringent and pungent. I wonder if this could be used for all doshas. It is not reducing; I think it helps to build strength in the muscles, but maybe it’s hard on pitta liver disorders? Do you have an article on olive oil with your analysis??? Good article

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      04/06/2018 - 10:22 am

      Hi, I will write about olive oil soon. It is not very harsh on Pitta.

      Reply to comment
  • Puneet gupta

    17/05/2018 - 7:48 pm

    Mustard is listed as rubifacient and anti inflammatory.Both are contradictory????please explain.

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      04/06/2018 - 11:26 am

      Rubafecient on external application. Anti inflammatory on oral intake.

      Reply to comment
  • Parul

    08/07/2018 - 12:45 am

    Hi my hair is damaged so some suggested me a hair oil solution please correct me if I am wrong and please tell me the quantity as well

    In Mustard oil heat all the mentioned things
    White Sesame
    Black sesame
    Black pepper
    Meetha neem

    But it has very bad smell please suggest me how to improve its smell and should I replace mustard oil with pure sesame oil

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      10/07/2018 - 11:19 am

      You can replace mustard with sesame oil.

      To remove bad smell, add a few drops of lavendar essential oil to it.

      Reply to comment
  • Parul

    08/07/2018 - 1:11 am

    Is there any solution to Hard Water….can we mix something in hair oil to reduce the effect of Hard Water on hair ?

    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      10/07/2018 - 11:17 am

      Hi, regular use of herbal hair oils such as neelibhringadi taila will protect hairs from the effects of hard water.

      Reply to comment
  • Parul

    10/07/2018 - 1:46 pm

    Is my recipe good enough and should I add or remove any ingredient….and should I use mustard oil only or should I mix mustard oil and sesame oil both as a base….ple ple tell me a very good recipe of herbal orhanio hair oil


    Reply to comment
    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu)

      31/07/2018 - 6:27 pm

      For product development related help, we offer consultation for a fee of Rs 5,000 per product.
      Please write here

      Reply to comment
  • Jesse

    16/10/2020 - 1:39 am

    Dear sir/madam,

    In the above comments it is said that peanuts are slightly hot. What is it that makes them hot?

    Reply to comment

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