Essential Oil Research
I am a science geek and skeptic, I am believer in the scientific method, proven medicines and all that Western thinking. Herbal remedies were foreign to me and essential oils seemed bizarre. I still think some of the claims that herbalists and new age medicine ideas are suspect, but over the years I have grown to respect their abilities to help maintain health and treat illness in both humans and animals. So much so that I am reluctant to give advice on using herbal supplements orally, these are highly active compounds and should be handled with just as much care as your pharmacist handles the medications he or she dispenses.
Oh man, now I’ve scared myself! If these compounds are so potentially dangerous why would I even want to consider using them? Well, to begin with I will not ever suggest you ingest any essential oils without talking with your doctor and knowing where the plant material has come from. Secondly, I only use essential oils topically in small, controlled doses.
Now, when did I first start to research essential oil? A few years ago we found a nasty little critter crawling in a family member’s hair. We were disgusted, ashamed, disturbed and distraught over this discovery. We found only one bug in the treatment and repeated checks that occurred over months in the Gillette House, and were adamant that it would be the only one. My sister bought me a bottle of tea tree oil and our journey down the essential oil pathway began.
Starting with Essential Oils
After that experience with tea tree oil, the early foray into soap making and a chance encounter with an essential oil representative at a farmer’s market I began to do essential oil research.
I compiled a list of all the essential oils I could find that were touted to have healing benefits. I then listed the benefits that were credited to them. I started with some well known blends like Young Living’s Thieves Oil, and went from there. I examined scientific web sites, studies published by the National Institute of Health, and other periodicals. With the list of oils I found two studies for each individual oil that demonstrated their claimed effect. From there, I looked for evidence that certain oil blends would be synergistic, helping to increase the effectiveness of each other.
I have not found a single reference that holds all of the information I was looking for so I created a multi-page spread sheet that contains all of my essential oil research.
As you can probably figure from reading this blog, I like to learn! I like to find things out, see how they fit together, and find ways to help my family and friends with the knowledge I have gained.