6 Essential Oils That Can Benefit Your Health
Essential oils, also commonly known as volatile aromatic oils are organic extracts of the flower, leaf, bark, fruit or seed of a plant. Throughout history, essential oils have been used for healing, aromatherapy, as well as holistic treatments for both emotional and mental health. Here we will discuss 6 essential oils that can benefit your health in a number of ways. But first, a look at why plants produce these oils.
Essential oils protect plants from insects, funguses and other animals. They also protect plants in harsher climate from water loss and their aromatic compounds attracts specific insects, allowing plants to pollinate more efficiently. However, our appreciation for these oils stems mainly from a therapeutic perspective.
How Are Essential Oils Obtained?
There are different extractions methods for procuring essential oils. These include cold pressed, steam distillation and solvent extraction. Among these, cold press and steam distillation are the most popular methods that deliver the purest form of oil. Fresh parts of the plant are added to boiling water, the oil is pulled out through steam, and captured in a vessel.
The poorest quality essential oils are the ones that come with fillers or solvents. Because the extraction process is expensive, it is tempting for companies to add fillers which reduces the quality and effects of the oil.
The 6 Best Essential Oils for Health
1. Lavender Oil
One of the most popular, in demand, and a bliss of heaven, lavender essential oil is an extract of lavender flowers. Because of its pleasant aroma and antiseptic properties, it has been a popular essential oil throughout history.
Lavender essential oil is commonly used in aromatherapy because of its various healing properties. It is it an excellent anxiety reliever and can help induce sleep. Its calming scent also makes it a useful tonic for removing nervous exhaustion and restlessness.
These calming properties have been shown to drop and possibly inhibit the flow of cortisol in the body. Cortisol can otherwise lower immunity, so the use of lavender essential oil may also help enhance immune boosting support.
Some of the other key health benefits of lavender oil include:
- Analgesic properties
- Effective for hair loss
- Aids in digestion
- Encourages hair growth
- Effective for skin disorders
2. Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus essential oil is common for its effectiveness against chest congestion and nasal blockage. People who suffer from allergies and cold often may benefit from the aromatic compounds found in eucalyptus oil.
Similar to peppermint oil which is good for IBS sufferers, Eucalptus Oil can help improve your IBS symptoms.
Eucalyptus oil extracted from the plant or bark has an enticing aroma which lifts up the mood. The oil also has widely known benefits for immunity and stress relief. When used vaporized, it can help heal the skin. Its key benefits include:
- Immunity booster
- Anxiety reliever
- Boosts cognitive performance
- Promotes muscle relaxation
3. Frankincense Oil
Frankincense oil, also popular as a spiritual healer is an ancient remedy for the cleansing of aura and spiritual awakening. Frankincense has a religious significance in many religions, and its aroma is widely involved in different religious practices. Its scent reduces depression and anxiety.
It also acts as an antiseptic for minor wounds. A chemical compound in the oil, AKBA is known to fight cancer cells in the body. The key benefits of Frankincense essential oil are:
- Prevents illness and mental disorders
- Fights bacteria and germs
- Balances hormone levels
- Facilitates digestion
4. Chamomile Oil
With its sweet and light scent, chamomile oil can act as a mild sedative to calm nerves. The oil also possesses anti-bacterial and anti-oxidant features that can address allergies, congestion, swelling and irritations.
In addition, chamomile is increasingly in demand for skin care remedies. It helps treat acne, blemishes and inflammation. Some recent studies found that chamomile prevents chemical processes that trigger inflammation and ulcers. The key benefits of chamomile oil include:
- Allergy repellant and reliever
- Reduces the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome
- Reduces insomnia
- Fights depression and anxiety
5. Cedarwood Essential Oil
Cedarwood essential oil is extracted from the bark of the cedarwood tree. It has a nice forest-like aroma that takes you back to the days when man was closer to nature.
Cedarwood earns its popularity from components like beta-cedrene and alpha-cedrene. Its aroma is known to improve concentration and focus. The key benefits of cedarwood include:
- Anti-inflammatory properties
- Promotes the growth of hair
- Relieves spasms
- Cures and strengthens gums
- Reduces skin problems and infections
- Repels insects and bugs
6. Cinnamon Essential Oil
Cinnamon is not just a favorite pantry item in most household, it also serves extraordinary health benefits when used as an essential oil. The oil is way more potent than the dried spice as it contains special compounds not found in its dried counterpart.
Cinnamon essential oil is popular for its therapeutic use, helping individuals relieve inflammation, stimulate the immune system and fight free radicals. New research also indicates that certain essential oils in cinnamon that give the spice its distinct flavor may also aid in weight loss.
The compound known as cinnamaldehyde enhances lipid metabolism and works by thermogenic, or by producing heat. This has the effect of turning up the heat on fat cells and helping in weight loss. Other key benefits of cinnamon essential oil are:
- Promoting circulation
- Fighting viruses
- Relieving depression
- Natural aphrodisiac
How To Use Essential Oils?
Essential oils are highly concentrated in nature and therefore cannot be directly applied or consumed. Instead, they are to be diluted with a carrier oil or meal for balance. A direct application on skin may cause a skin reaction or allergy.
Essential oils have a certain percentage in which they are to be used both orally and in the form of vapors. Some of the market sold essential oils are not for oral use, and therefore should be taken carefully. In many cases high concentration essential oils prove to be more harmful than beneficial, for they are not used correctly.
Carrier oils that work best with the above mentioned essential oils are olive oil, almond oil, coconut oil and rose oil. It is best to consult a skin specialist or aroma therapist for the best method of use.
Nature has provided us with its own pharmacy when treating ailments and illnesses. There’s no denying that essential oils work to a large degree. Give it a shot and you might be surprised by Mother Nature’s healing touch.