What Are Essential Oils?
Essential oils (EOs) are highly concentrated plant extracts that are believed to help improve one’s physical, mental, emotional, and even spiritual health and well-being when used correctly.
EOs are sourced from various types of plant material – tree bark and resin, roots, plants, stems, flowers, seeds, nuts, and even fruit.
Think of EOs as the plant’s essence.
This essence contains many active compounds that can offer multiple health benefits while supporting the body’s healing mechanisms.
What Is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is a form of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) that includes the use of essential oils for therapeutic purposes.
The 7 Most Healing Essential Oils
The most healing EOs will offer multiple properties to support the body like for example:
- Calmative, Sedative
- Pain relief
Peppermint oil (Mentha piperita)
Peppermint essential oil is a truly versatile oil that can help with many different conditions from respiratory issues to digestive problems.
It’s also believed to help calm the mind and release fear.
Frankincense oil (Boswellia carterii)
This oil helps boost the immune system and is great for fighting infections.
It also acts as a sedative that helps manage stress and release nervous tension.
When used in meditation it can create a soothing effect that uplifts moods.
Lavender oil (Lavanda angustifolia)
Lavender essential oil is one of the most popular and widely used oils in aromatherapy.
Like peppermint, it can help with many different issues.
It can help you reduce blood pressure, lessen headaches, accelerate skin healing, improve insomnia, and even combat bacterial and fungal infections.
When used in meditation it can help open your inner vision, give you clarity, improve insight.
Tea Tree oil (Melaleuca alternifolia)
This oil is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and antifungal properties.
It’s a potent antiseptic that can help keep wounds clean and prevent infections while accelerating skin healing.
Tea tree oil is toxic when ingested and should only be used topically.
Citrus Oils: Lemon, Sweet Orange, Grapefruit, & Bergamot
Citrus oils are excellent for boosting immunity and enhancing the body’s detox pathways.
They can help stimulate lymphatic drainage, which basically means they help clear out the body’s sewage system.
When used in meditation lemon oil can help increase focus, release negativity, uplift your mood, and cultivate bliss consciousness.
Clove oil (Syzygium aromaticum)
Clove oil is a potent anesthetic that can help soothe arthritis pain, bee stings, insect bites, and infections.
When used in meditation clove oil can help release tension and negativity while embracing your self-esteem.
Oregano oil (Origanum vulgare)
Oregano is a potent antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral that can help protect you against multiple infections.
It’s also an effective insect repellent and makes for a wonderful and aromatic addition in the kitchen.
Other EOs that offer multiple healing benefits:
- Eucalyptus oil
- Roman chamomile oil
- Ylang Ylang
What The Science Says
Research shows EOs can be capable of helping with multiple ailments.
Immunity & Colds:
- Soothing eczema
- Treating warts
- Healing insect bites
- Helping sunburns and skin burns
Inflammatory Conditions & Pain:
- Soothing arthritis symptoms
- Relieving pain and discomfort
- Muscle pain
- Foot pain
- Addressing allergy symptoms
- Tennis elbow
- Diabetes and blood sugar balance
- Soothing headaches and migraines
- Treating hemorrhoids
- Hair growth and dandruff
- Nausea and morning sickness
- Weight management
How To Use Essential Oils For Healing
Always dilute your essential oil blends with a carrier oil like coconut oil or jojoba oil if you’re applying directly to the skin.
As a general rule of thumb stick to 1-2 drops of EO per teaspoon of carrier oil.
Never apply EOs in mucous membrane areas like your eyes, nose, or genitals as this can cause irritation.
Pro tip: One great thing about EOs is you can mix and blend different oils to enhance their healing and therapeutic effects.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) created a comprehensive list of EOs that are considered ‘generally recognized as safe’ (GRAS) for ingestion provided the oils are undiluted, solvent-free, and consumed in an appropriate quantity and as described.
This list is not exhaustive.
The FDA doesn’t regulate EOs so it’s on you to do your own research and make up your own decisions when looking to purchase any oil.
It’s a good idea to only ingest supplement-grade, certified organic EO products as you don’t want to make symptoms worse to ingest pesticides and other harmful chemicals.
It’s also a good idea to use vegetable gel capsules that you can add the EO too.
Dilute the EO with MCT oil or olive oil if you’re going to use the capsule method.
You can also learn to cook safely with essential oils.
You can use either an inhaler for a more direct application or a diffuser for a less direct application.
Inhalation of essential oils is not as effective as topical application or ingestion for constipation or digestive purposes.
If you’re going to inhale or diffuse your oils be sure to couple it with an abdominal massage for best results.
What are the side effects of essential oils?
When used safely and mindfully EOs usually offer little to no side effects though these are the things to look out for:
- Allergic reactions
- Skin irritation
- Worsening of symptoms
You want to make sure you’re using 100% pure essential oil that is undiluted and certified organic.
This ensures the highest healing benefits and potency and can also protect you against potentially harmful chemicals and solvents.
When using EOs directly on the skin such as with wart treatment it’s very important to dilute the oils with a carrier oil.
You do not want to apply the neat oils directly on the skin as this can cause skin irritation and adverse reactions particularly if you have sensitive skin.
This is especially true if you’re dealing with burned skin.
Always perform a patch test on a non-affected area and wait 24 hours before proceeding to the affected area.
Note: There is no evidence indicating that essential oils can treat or cure Covid-19.