Essential oils are extremely unique to our health and I am going to talk about how they can benefit us.
First, let’s talk about what is an essential oil and how it’s made…
Essential oils are extracted from every part of the plant (leaf, bark, peel, etc.) through steam distillation such as cold pressing, in addition, other methods are used.
One method that many try to stay away from, are the essential oils that have been extracted by soaking in a chemical solvent. Companies that use this method will have other ingredients listed on their essential oil other than the plant itself and how it was produced.
Long story short keep in mind the ingredients listed. Many essential oil companies will not have their ingredients listed on their website or product, I wouldn’t recommend these companies as their oil is not all natural. In addition, these companies use synthetic fragrance to enhance the present scent which can defeat the purpose and use of the essential oil.
Ingrediants should look a little like this…
not so much this…
How do Essential Oil Benefit You…
The olfactory bulb (located inside the nasal cavity) specializing in our sense of smell is apart of our limbic system.
Research shows that smelling the ‘essence’ of the essential oil rewards our limbic system.
The limbic system is a network of nerves in the brain that are in control of our mood, our emotions such as pleasure, and most importantly our memory.
Hence why smells trigger so many memories!
The limbic system also participates in higher mental functions that include;
High blood pressure (due to stress)
The most commonly used essential oils are;
Peppermint– stimulant, boosts energy, relieves tension headaches, antifungal
Lavender– stress-relief, anti-anxiety, calming
Lemon– antibacterial, aids in digestion, mood, anti-inflammatory
Rosemary– boosts the immune system, increase blood pressure and heart rate
Bergamot– helps with skin irritants, reduce stress
Sandalwood– My favorite! Reduce anxiety, relaxing, boosts happiness or energy
Chamomile– helps with mood, relaxing
Ylang-Ylang– headaches, nausea, skin irritants
There are so may I could go on!
Companies such as Plant Therapy and Young Living make their own “synergy” concoctions. These include 5 to 10 maybe even more different scents of essential oil mixed in one bottle. Many mixes of essential oil can give off particular benefits.
Here are some mixes:
Lavender, Ylang-Ylang, and Chamomile- help with relieving pain and nausea, perfect for menstrual cramps!
Lavender and Lemon – extreme relaxation
Lemongrass, Tangerine, and Spearmint- mood booster ( if you add a drop of Copaiba it smells like green tea)
Frankincense, Melissa and Lavender- Helps with worry and anxiety
Keep in mind many essential oils are medical grade, meaning they are direct from the plant and sometimes can irritate our skin if used directly without diluting it. These are all recipes for an aroma diffuser, do not use undiluted essential oils directly on your skin.
If you are worried about diluting the essential oil, Plant Therapy makes “KidSafe” essential oil, it is already diluted and safe to use on the skin as well.
Another authentic essential oil company is Young Living.
They use a method of extracting directly from the plant and are high-grade essential oils.
It is so easy to incorporate these aromas into our daily lives, through aroma diffuser, lotions, candles and using a rollerball with a diluted component.
If you are still apprehensive I recommend just grabbing one or two scents that might make a difference in your life, whether its relaxation or energy boosting. Try lavender in your diffuser before bed and you might find it quite calming, I know it helps me sleep better!
Let me know what scent you get and how it works for you!