Returning to Nature
Large companies are now realizing that people prefer natural home and body care products to artificial (and often dangerous) chemically manufactured items. Slogans on commercial and TV ads tout “Now, with essential oils.” Yet, the use of essential oils as a form of medicinal therapy is still a relatively new concept in this modern era.
If you are more familiar with the rising medicinal interest in essential oils, you may have read studies indicating that essential oils are effective stress relievers, antibacterial, antiviral and well, antimicrobial everything. Yet, what does one actually DO with this information? We took on the challenge of reading through the latest science studies on the effectiveness of essential oils and found applications to support intestinal, mental and oral health.
Relieving Feelings of Anxiousness with Essential Oils
Living in an intensely changing world, a growing percentage of the population is experiencing high levels of sustained anxiety and worry. Medical treatments for this disorder are commonly psychotropic drugs; however, long term use of pharmaceuticals is now being discouraged due to their side-effects. An alternative treatment may be warranted from the citrus family – Citrus sinensis or sweet orange. A 2010 study conducted in Brazil looked at the potential of sweet orange essential oil to reduce anxiety behaviors in lab animals. They found that this oil had significant anxiety reducing effects on tested rats.
Restoring Intestinal Health
Most if not all of us have experienced an upset stomach. Yet for those with dysbiosis, an imbalance of intestinal microflora, such a condition can be on-going with various levels of severity. It is now widely understood that disbiosis is a probable cause of inflammatory and autoimmune disorders, food allergies, fatigue and possibly even colon cancer.
A preliminary study from Australia found that essential oils of lavender, caraway, Ajowan caraway and neroli were effective against intestinal bacteria associated with dysbiosis. Researchers also found these essential oils did not disrupt the healthy intestinal microflora, as pharmaceutical drugs are known to do.
Supporting Oral Health
Brushing and flossing go hand in hand to maintain oral health. Bacteria not removed from this routine can form a slime covering known as a biofilm. Biofilm bacteria can cause a buildup of plaques which usually results in tooth decay and gum disease.
In September of 2009, the University of Bangkok, Thailand released findings that the essential oil of Ocimum americanum L. (American basil) was effective at reducing all tested adverse oral microorganisms, including those that formed biofilms.
Latest research on essential oils supports the use in areas of oral, mental and intestinal support. A bridge between what has been found in science research and practical application is a growing aspect of aromatherapy. With each of our reviews, a practical application has been provided.