The Benefits of Essential Oils

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The long line of essential oils on the shelf of your local organic market seems like a recent trend. However, essential oils have been used medicinally for hundreds of years.

Essential oils are aromatic plant extracts, and they may be best known for their use in aromatherapy.

Aromatherapy typically uses them in massages or baths to promote the unique benefits of the oils. Benefitting from essential oils means being surrounded by their scents.

Essential oil diffusers are common for adding a light scent to the air. Less expensive alternatives include adding the oil to a bath or touching the oil to a cotton ball to smell.

However a person decides to release its fragrance, it’s important to mix the oil with another oil, such as coconut or olive, before placing it on the skin, as it may cause irritation.

Be careful not to use too much oil, as it can be overwhelming to the senses. A little bit can go a long way.

With a seemingly endless variety of oils, choosing the right oil for the right ailment may become a daunting task.

Here are some essential oils and what each of them can do for your body.

1. For stress relief

Lavender and chamomile are both well known for reducing stress.

Other oils that reduce stress include bergamot, which is known to reduce anxiety. Ylang ylang is known to lower high blood pressure, contributing to lowering stress levels.

Frankincense is also known to contribute to lower stress levels by helping to clear the mind. Vetiver helps with relaxation as well as insomnia.

2. For energy

Energy boosting oils are likely to come from citrus plants.

Mandarin, lemon, orange, and grapefruit oils are all good energy boosters. Other oils, such as spearmint and peppermint, are also good for waking up the senses.

3. For allergies

Also used for waking up the senses, peppermint is known to help quell allergies. Lavender is known not only to calm the mind, but to ease allergies as well.

Frankincense and lemon are known to help with a stuffy nose. Basil is known to help with inflammation.

4. For boosting your immune system

In addition to helping to calm the mind and allergies, frankincense can also help boost immunity.

Eucalyptus and rosemary help boost immunity by helping to fight off colds. Rose oil has a number of benefits, including helping to prevent colds, reduce fevers and inflammation, and treat wounds—all, naturally, aiding the immune system.

5. For acne

Tea tree oil is often pointed to as a way to help treat acne, as it is capable of drying problem areas—however take care not to dry out the skin too much.

Lavender is known to calm the skin as well as nerves. Jojoba oil is known to treat acne, but it also is used to treat bruises, sores, psoriasis, sunburns, and chapped or dry skin.

Like jojoba oil, Juniper berry oil is used for healing skin conditions, including acne. Geranium oil is known to help acne and inflammation.

6. For the blues…

Jasmine oil is known for its calming and reinvigorating properties, and for that reason is used as an antidepressant.

Both bergamot and ylang ylang are known to have positive affects on the mind and help subdue negative emotions.

Frankincense is not only known to soothe anxiety, but to create overall feelings of well being.

7. For focus

Rosemary oil may be the go-to for focus. With its ability to fight both mental and physical exhaustion, rosemary makes a great replacement for the early morning cup of coffee.

Also known to help with mental exhaustion is cinnamon oil. Cinnamon is known to aid concentration, and it has a lovely autumn aroma. Peppermint, which is also good for boosting energy, is also good for clearing the mind for focus.

8. For a mood boost

Jasmine oil’s reinvigorating properties make a good mood booster as well. Rosemary’s fatigue preventing properties can also help with boosting moods.

Lemon is known to help clear the mind and have also been known to reduce anger and anxiety. Geranium, a sweet-smelling oil, is known to prevent fatigue as well.

Image: iStock

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