Decoding the hype over essential oils and their various benefits
Essential oils are oils that are infused with the "essence" of plants. The most popular use of these oils is in aromatherapy where they are used to promote health and well-being. The aroma from essential oils stimulates that part of the brain called the limbic system, which plays a role in emotions, behaviors, and long-term memory, explaining why certain smells get us nostalgic.
Buy those that use only pure plant compounds
Every essential oil is unique and comes with its own set of health benefits. The most popular ones are rose, lemon, peppermint, lavender, sandalwood, ylang-ylang, and chamomile. While purchasing essential oils, make sure to buy those that use only pure plant compounds extracted by cold pressing or distillation and avoid those that are mixed with synthetic fragrances and chemicals and other oils.
These oils do not cure disease, but can heal
It is important to note that aromatherapy and essential oils do not cure disease and it cannot be used as a substitute for medicines and treatments. However, they provide healing, calming effect on the mind and body, and are used to reduce nausea, body aches, menstrual problems, alopecia, headaches, and fatigue. Different oils have different benefits and uses associated with them.
Use an oil diffuser, do a patch test before using
Using an oil diffuser is a great way to diffuse and inhale the steam of the oil. Always follow the ratio given in the manual to mix the oil with water. A mini diffuser is a great choice for smaller spaces such as office rooms or cars. While applying on the skin, however, make sure to do a patch test before using the oil.
Keep these few precautions in mind before using essential oils
Essential oils are sold in their concentrated form and it is important to dilute them before using them. Always mix them with carrier oils before using them on skin and hair. Never ingest essential oils and always keep them out of reach of children and pets. Persons with conditions such as eczema, epilepsy psoriasis, and hypertension should be extra cautious when using these oils.