11 Essential Oils And Their Health Benefits
Essential oils are liquid components derived from various parts of plants, including stems, roots, flowers, and seeds. The oil sustains the strong aroma and essence of the plant. This is due to the tremendous amount of plant material required to make essential oil.
These oils are prepared through distillation (steam or water) or automatic processes such as cold pressing. Essential oils are categorized into citrus, herbal, spicy, floral, and woody groups. They have a wide range of uses and offer many health benefits. Here is a list of a few essential oils and their health benefits:
1. Lavender Oil
Lavender oil is one of the most renowned essential oils. It has a fresh floral aroma and a lengthy list of refreshing and calming properties. Linalyl acetate and linalool are the two calming and sedative compounds found in lavender that supply many health benefits.
A study was conducted on the effect of lavender oil on anxiety and concluded that smelling or consuming diluted lavender oil can lower anxiety levels. This oil is rich in antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antinociceptive properties.
- Improves mood and reduces stress
- Supports cognitive function
- Aids in diabetes
- Contains antimicrobial activity
2. Peppermint Oil
Peppermint is one of those herbs that everyone knows about. This herb grows without much haste. Peppermint essential oil is obtained from the leaves of the peppermint plant and is used for various purposes.
It has a strong odor that is chilling, and it tastes likewise. You feel a certain coolness in the mouth after consuming something with peppermint flavor. The main components present in peppermint oil are menthol and menthone. Peppermint tea is also as beneficial as peppermint oil.
- Treats scalp inflammation
- Improves digestive health
- Relief from muscle pain
- Aids headache
3. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is popular for its antiseptic, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties. This oil is extracted from the leaves of a small tree, Melaleuca alternifolia. Tea tree oil includes many compounds, such as terpinen-4-ol, that are associated with killing bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
This oil might have advantages for tropical use. The health benefits of tea tree oil are scientifically backed, proving it safe for use. It has several uses, including maintaining healthy skin, nails, and hair.
- Works as insect repellent
- Excellent for acne treatment
- Controls underarm odor
- Disinfects minor wounds and cuts
4. Frankincense Oil
Frankincense oil, just like other essential oils, has been used for various years for its healing and soothing properties in aromatherapy practices. Frankincense, also known as olibanum, is obtained from the resin of the Boswellia tree. This tree is usually found in dry, hilly regions.
Frankincense oil releases a spicy, woody aroma that offers many health benefits when inhaled or ingested. The health benefits of this essential oil range from treating arthritis to improving oral health.
- Reduce joint inflammation
- Improves gut functioning
- It treats bronchitis and asthma
- Maintains oral health
5. Bergamot Oil
Bergamot oil comes from the rinds of citrus fruits that are found on the bergamot orange tree. The tree initially originated in Southeast Asia. It has a refreshing aroma, a spicy flavor, and numerous possible uses and health benefits.
Certain aspects and decisions of life can leave us bombarded and stressed; the soothing scent of bergamot oil helps to clear negativity and help us relax. You can use this oil by diluting a few drops into lotion, shampoo, and conditioner.
- Uplifts mood
- Encourages sleep
- Boost hair growth
- Removes scars and signs of aging
6. Lemon Oil
Lemon essential oils are extracted from the peels of lemons and can be released into the air or applied to the skin combined with a carrier oil. Studies have suggested that aromatherapy based on lemon oil might enhance the cognitive functions of Alzheimer's patients.
This oil is excellent for aromatherapy and other uses. However, some suggest that lemon essential oil might make skin vulnerable to sunlight and raise the risk of sunburn. It is best to avoid direct contact with the sun after application. Different types of lemon produce different varieties of lemon essential oil.
- Alleviates inflammation
- Soothes nausea
- Kills bacteria
- Minimize anxiety and depression
7. Rosemary Oil
From improving cognitive functions to promoting healthy hair, rosemary essential oil has a lot to offer. This oil is generally considered safe, but pregnant women and people with high blood pressure or epilepsy should avoid it.
Rosemary is an everlasting shrub that has sharp needle-like leaves with a woody smell. Rosemary essential oil has been shown to release acetylcholine, a brain chemical crucial for its role in thinking, memory, and focus. It helps prevent androgenetic alopecia, a common type of hair loss.
- Improves cognitive functions
- Increase alertness and combat fatigue
- Eases dysmenorrhea
- Prevents headache
8. Cedarwood Oil
Cedarwood essential oil is extracted from various parts of cedar trees, including needles, leaves, bark, and berries. Wide varieties of cedar trees are prevalent throughout the world. Essential oil from cedar trees can be extracted through different procedures, such as carbon dioxide distillation, steam distillation, and cold press methods.
Cedrine, cedrol, and thujopsene are the components found in cedarwood oil that have antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, insecticidal, and antifungal properties.
- Nourishing dry scalp
- Promotes hair growth
- Reduce scars and treat minor wounds
- Soothes symptoms of eczema
9. Chamomile Oil
Chamomile essential oil is known to be extremely favorable. Throughout the years, it has been used to treat various illnesses and health conditions. The oil is extracted from the flowers of the chamomile plant, which is somehow related to the family of daisies.
There are two varieties of chamomile: Roman and German chamomile. The active ingredient in this plant is chamazulene, which is high in German chamomile. Chamomile offers health benefits in many forms, be they in the form of chamomile essential oil or chamomile tea.
- Protects diarrhea and digestive issues
- Promotes sleep
- Eases eczema or rashes
- Relief of back pain and arthritis
10. Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus essential oil is great during the cold season. It opens up a congested nose and allows you to breathe easily. Initially belonging to Australia, eucalyptus trees are now grown in different parts of the world. The oil is extracted from the oval-shaped leaves of the eucalyptus tree.
The leaves are soaked, dried, crushed, and then sterilized to extract the essential oil. The oil must be mixed with other carrier oils before application. Ingesting the oil inside the body is risky and might cause fatal loss.
- It relieves coughs and colds
- Help release the mucus from the chest
- Fights herpes simplex virus
- Minimises inflammation
11. Cinnamon Oil
Cinnamon oil is made by boiling the leaves or bark of trees belonging to the Cinnamomum family. Cinnamon is a popular spice used in the form of tea for various health benefits. The essential oil sustains the rich, warm aroma of the spice. Oils that are extracted from the barks of cinnamon tend to be more costly than those produced from leaves.
Cinnamon essential oil can be used for various purposes, including moisturizing skin, aromatherapy, hydrating hair, and others. However, just like other essential oils, cinnamon oil should be diluted with carrier oil for use.
- Combats Congestion
- May Soothe Coughs
- Promotes Deep Breathing
- Tones skin
Other Different Types of Essential Oil
There are a wide variety of essential oils available on the market. Each of them carries distinct health benefits. Nonetheless, almost every essential oil has soothing, stimulating, antiseptic, decongestant, refreshing, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic properties.
Extracts from plants have been used in traditional medicines for a long time. Modern medicine also acknowledges the benefits of essential oils. Here is a list of some other types of essential oils:
- Clary Sage
- Juniper Berry
- Fir Needle
- Palo Santo
Different Uses of Essential Oil
Essential oils are used to create a wide variety of products. Many cosmetic and makeup industries use essential oils to manufacture skin care, focusing mainly on acne, body washes, lotions, and many other products.
Some of the popular products containing essential oils are:
- Air fresheners
- Food Flavoring
- Cleaning Products,
Most of all, they are used for aromatherapy, a form of medication where the oil is inhaled or applied to the skin. Inhaling the oil enters the lungs and bloodstream and energizes the limbic system. Moreover, heat helps essential oils get absorbed well in the body.
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