What do you think of when you hear the words essential oils?  For most people, aromatherapy comes to mind – a pleasant aroma that brings pleasure to our senses; however, there is a lot more to essential oils than just a desirable fragrance. 

Essential Oils have been used world-wide from the beginning of civilization. Widely used for food preparation, beauty treatments, and health-care practices, it’s most commonly remembered from Biblical times when the wise men presented Frankincense and Myrrh as gifts to the Christ because it was more valuable than gold. Today, as research on the therapeutic and medicinal values of essential oils increases, the understanding of essentials oils and how they interact with the body are valuable in developing a personal holistic approach to our health and wellness. 

What are essential oils?

Essential oils are naturally occurring, volatile aromatic compounds that are found in the seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers, and other parts of plants. They play an intrinsic role in protecting plants. When harvested, processed and distilled properly, essential oils have been scientifically proven to provide therapeutic benefits that support our physical health and emotional wellness.

There are over 3,000 varieties of volatile aromatic compounds that vary from plant to plant, making each oil unique. Based on an individual’s plant’s chemical constituents, essential oil properties may be antiviral, antimicrobial, antibacterial and, to name a few, making essential oils a natural alternative and/or supplemental alternative to synthetic drugs. When used safely, essential oils provide support for healthy immune, respiratory and digestive health, help decrease stress, protect against environmental and season threats, promotes relaxation, uplifts mood, promotes emotional health and more.

How to use essential oils?

Essential oils may be applied topically, internally or through inhalation. Direct application is applying the oils directly on the areas of concern. Consult guidelines for dilution and consider skin sensitivity when placing directly on skin. When taken internally, the most effective way is by placing a drop or two of an essential oil under the tongue allowing the oils to pass directly into the bloodstream. Placing oils into capsules is another common way to ingest or, by simply adding to water or beverage such as adding lemon oil into your water, you can enhance your digestive process. Aromatic application involves inhalation through diffusion or direct inhalation. Prior to using essential oils, you should educate yourself on uses and safety concerns and always consult your physician. 

Keep in mind, the quality and efficacy of the oil is significant. Use only certified,100% pure, therapeutic grade oils. Check the ingredients to ensure the oils are high quality, without contamination and/or chemical, toxic additives or fillers.

Essential oils are a natural solution to wellness but not a substitute for self-care including proper diet, exercise, stress reduction, and reducing toxins. By taking control of our health naturally, we may prevent the need for doctors and hospitals. Essential oils are not just about aroma It’s about wellness. 

Article contributed by Lori Fonzi/Photo Contributed Facebook