Another French contemporary, Dr. Jean Valnet, used therapeutic-grade essential oils to successfully treat injured soldiers during World War II. He then went on to become a world leader in the development of respected aromatherapy practices. The modern use of essential oils has continued to grow incredibly rapidly as health scientists and medical practitioners continue to research and validate the benefits of therapeutic-grade essential oil.
The oils are steam-distilled or mechanically pressed from flowers, trees, shrubs, fruit, roots, rinds, resins and herbs. Each plant's essential oil has a different chemical composition that affects how it smells, how it is absorbed, and how it is used by the body. Even the essential oils from different varieties of the same species may have different chemical compositions, and can vary when the same plants are grown or harvested in different ways, or in different locations.
Look for oils that are organic as a first choice. Any pollutants on the plants can be more concentrated in the essential oil. This is especially important for citrus essential oils, as they are traditionally heavily sprayed with pesticides. The term “organic” means different things in different countries, but it is one more possible indicator of quality. Some retailers also carry oils that are “unsprayed,” where the farms are not certified as organic, but they do not spray their crops, and many high quality oils are also wildcrafted.
Only pesticide residues that are hydrophilic, thermostable, and volatile can be carried over into an essential oil during distillation. Few pesticides possess these characteristics, so pesticide levels found in distilled oils are typically insignificant. In one large database, out of 73,541 analytical results on distilled essential oils, only 0.55% had positive results for pesticide detection.
There is no difference between wintergreen oil toxicity and methyl salicylate toxicity. Methyl salicylate is one of the ingredients in Listerine, so many people use it daily in a mouthwash, and very small amounts may be ingested. As always, toxicity is in relation to dose. I would suggest that wintergreen oil is not one that should be taken orally as a medicine, unless under the supervision of a doctor or herbalist. There have been many fatalities from (accidental) overdose, and there are a number of toxicity issues – it’s fetotoxic, there are several reasons why it could be problematic in children, it’s extremely blood-thinning, and should be avoided by people with GERD. So it’s not just a question of how much is toxic – it’s also about individual sensitivity. It should absolutely never be taken during pregnancy. Like all salicylates, it causes fetal malformations. Even externally, it can cause problems. I believe it has now been taken out of Tiger Balm because so many people in Asia were experiencing blood-thinning problems (internal bruising in people on blood-thinning drugs).
Great article! I like the way everything is explained in detail. I love essential oils and use few kinds for aromatherapy, but the thing I always wanted to do is to include essential oils in my homemade cleaning solutions. In your article I found all the information and advices I needed, so now I already can use essential oils for cleaning too. Thank you for the hints!
I am not pregnant, but potentially could be within the next year or so. If it is not advised to use essential oils during pregnancy, what would be a good replacement in lieu of using your cleansing oils and moisturizer since both contain essential oils? I currently OCM using your oils and I don’t think my skin would be very happy with me if I didn’t wash my face for 9+ months. 😉 Nevermind the fact that I’ve had troubled skin throughout my life so the thought of pregnancy acne terrifies me.
Which brings me to Young Loving. Sigh. I really LOVE their oils. They have a clarity that I just don’t find, reliably, from any other company that I have tried. I did the whole kit and membership thing but only for my own needs. I’m not here to sell anybody anything. I use a lot of their other products as well and have been happy with my purchases (except for the Rose Ointment that has Patchouli in it. I hate Patchouli).
I know nothing about using EOs so I am trying to do some research. I live in Missouri and there is a company here called Jordan Essentials all of their products are all natural. They recently came out with an essential oil line. My friend is a consultant for them and I am considering but some. Although I trust her, I don’t know what information the she has been told to say without really knowing what the quality is of their EO is (if that makes sense lol)If anyone know anything about their EOs please let me know 🙂
Eco-Control is an inspection agency and a certification authority for ecological products and quality assurance system in the non-food area. They certify and control standards for natural and organic cosmetic. Part of it are e.g. NaTrue, ICADA, Demeter and the BDIH standard. The Eco-Control developed their own seal for ecological raw materials and quality assurance systems for producers of raw materials and natural cosmetic. The ecological quality of a product is certified, e.g. essential oils. They are pursuant to “EG BIO” and pursuant to ISO 9235 or aroma regulation proved with regard to the manufacturing process.
i am affiliated with a like minded company, Essante Organics. every item is toxic free, non gmo, and small green footprint. having doterra, young living, and essante oils and comparing same types, i am positive essante is the better of the three. essante’s company philosophy is better also. check them out. EssanteOrganics.com/julieparks i’m confident you will be impressed.
As an aromatic food supplement, essential oils are a playground for the nose and probably safe in small quantities. They may be useful in modulating the mind-body connection, but as primary medical treatment for most disease conditions, there is no evidence to suggest they work. I’d recommend spending your hard-earned money on chemical compounds that do.
After the solvent extraction process has been completed, the resulting absolute will have an extremely low concentration of solvent residue, approximately 5 to 10ppm (parts per million). The current European Union standards are for less than 10 parts per million solvent residues in a finished absolute.7 However, even with such a potentially small residue (less than .0001%), many aromatherapists disagree with the use of absolutes for individuals with a compromised immune system due to the potential effect of the residual pesticide.
And while it may be true that scents can be calming and pleasing to people, Pam Dalton of the Monell Chemical Senses Center says that “they likely aren’t working due to any pharmacological or biological effect, [but] rather a sensory/psychological effect.” For instance, the scent of mint may make you feel more alert because it stimulates a nerve that allows you to perceive irritation and pain (or lack thereof).
The medicinal use of therapeutic essential oils can be very helpful and may support the body to bring rapid and welcome relief from a great variety of symptoms. However, the medicinal use of essential oils provides only a part of the many unique and powerful benefits of these complex plant essences. Therefore, the medicinal use of essential oils is best used as part of a larger, more holistic context of health and wellness, which can include mainstream medicine.
Distillation appears to have been practiced throughout ancient times. Based upon the current interpretation Paolo Rovesti’s discovery of an earthenware distillation apparatus, the production or extraction of aromatic oils by means of steam distillation, has been known for 5000 years.1 During the fifth century AD, the famed writer, Zosimus of Panopolis, refers to the distilling of a divine water and panacea. Throughout the early Middle Ages and beyond, a crude form of distillation was known and was used primarily to prepare floral waters or distilled aromatic waters. These appear to have been used in perfumery, as digestive tonics, in cooking, and for trading.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classifies essential oils as food supplements, not drugs. This means producers of essential oils are not allowed to market the compounds as medicine. In fact, they must clearly state the product is “not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.” According to the Dietary Supplemental Health and Education Act of 1994, this classification also means the FDA is not allowed to regulate the sale or use of essential oils unless they can prove a particular product poses a serious threat.
Myrrh has been used in rituals, anointing blends and perfumery since ancient times, and was felt to enhance spirituality during sacred rites. The oil has a rich and warm, woody yet bittersweet scent which is pleasant to use during meditation. We offer a premium quality Myrrh, and a more cost-efficient selection from India that is softer and sweeter, to cover your product needs.
In Dawn-Mari’s pitch (she’s basically selling her classes and her essential oils) she makes the following comment: Only therapeutic grade essential oils should be used to ensure safety and that there are no synthetic or toxic chemicals being introduced to the body. Unfortunately, less than 2 percent of the essential oil found in health-food stores and the like are actually therapeutic grade, even though the label might say something like “100-percent pure”.
Hi Karen, businesses with a multi-level (network) marketing structure need to have higher prices because so many people take a cut from each sale. That’s not to say the quality of the product is not good, but you can get the same quality for less. On the other hand, you can’t necessarily go for the cheapest either! Price is only a rough guide to quality. Check out this blog post: http://tinyurl.com/ler5shs. There are several grades of ylang-ylang oil, – extra, I, II, III and complete, but this does not apply to any other essential oil https://roberttisserand.com/2014/01/re-distilled-essential-oils/
Anyway, I found a local store that makes (distills?) their own. I enjoy going there to pick out and purchase my oils. Plus I love to support my community. However, I’m still stuck on the idea of food grade. My local place says their EOs are not food grade and shouldn’t be ingested. So do those MLMs do something to their oils to make them safe to consume or is my local place just saying that to cover their butts?
MEVEI was founded out of our pure passion for premium and luxury essential oils. The benefits of essential oils extend far beyond aromatherapy. Instead of focusing only on the therapeutic value of the oils and competing purely on price, we differentiate on providing an exceptional experience to your daily beauty routine. The ancient civilizations had long ago perfected the art and science of extracting and harnessing the natural benefits of the worlds most treasured botanical ingredients and our mission is to demystify those golden secrets; and to craft extraordinary products of sophistication as an unforgettable addition to your lifestyle. Our all-natural products aim to inspire and deliver a touch of glamour to make your every day special.
Like other complementary and alternative medicines (CAM), the essential oil market is unregulated. But several years ago, the Food and Drug Administration, which regulates prescription medication, issued a warning about Young Living’s marketing. After reviewing the company’s websites and social media accounts, the FDA found that the company was mislabeling and misbranding their products as drugs even though they were not approved as such.
Essential Oil benefits and uses includes aiding sleep, relieving sleep and anxiety, massage therapies, a good air freshener, excellent cleaning agents, pain reliever, support weight loss, prevent cancer and aid digestion. Other benefits includes supporting nail health, detoxifying the body, treating allergies, treating depression, support healthy joints and bones, treating respiratory illness, promoting mental alertness, supporting circulation, balancing hormones, treating motion sickness and supporting heart health.
There are a lot of valid (and invalid) comments here and all I can testify to is my personal experience. I first want to mention the supposed email from doTERRA at the top of this post- if you can take out the email address and other “protected” information, you can easily take out the word “don’t” or add some other statements to imply that doTERRA sent that email to you. Nobody here really knows if it really came that way so it really isn’t proof, but is an interesting start to the conversation. Second, each representative is responsible for their providing accurate information with integrity. I am sorry for those who were lied to or had overeager consultants making wrong claims because they didn’t research properly or just lied to make a sale. However, I have run into a few car salesmen that lied through their teeth in order to sell me a car. It doesn’t mean I walk or ride a bike just because of that one experience. Don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater!
Diffusing any EO would not be safe for the children or adult coming into your classroom as there are tons of allergies and Pharmaceutical Drug interactions you would not be aware of which could potentially be very dangerous. I would definitely do more research before investing in EO’s, especially with YL or any MLM indicating they can cure illnesses. YL, doTerra and Natural Solutions were cited by the FDA in September 2014 for doing just that. Mountain Rose Herbs is a great company, Plant Therapy offers even Children Safe single Oils and Synergy Blends.
Don't stress: Relaxation is only a whiff away. While there are plenty of science-backed scents for finding calm (rose, sandalwood, lavender, frankincense, and orange among them), Avery points out that in the end, you do you: "Any aroma that speaks to you and brings about a sense of calm and relaxation can be beneficial." Our favorite trick for alleviating tension in 30 seconds flat? Massage an oil blend with calming scents into your temples, which are pressure points.
You’ll often see companies advertising their "therapeutic grade," "aromatherapy grade," or "medicinal grade" oils. Unfortunately for them, no such thing exists. "There is no formally approved grading standard used consistently throughout the essential oil industry," Lortscher says. Simply put, anyone who says that they have therapeutic grade or "certified" essential oils is lying. "That seal is nothing more than a commercial trademark. It isn’t backed by any scientific body."
100% Pure. Oils that say “pure” or “100% pure” are allowed to have as little as 51% essential oil by law! Isn’t that amazing? Therefore, “pure” on the label doesn’t really mean pure. And, even if an oil is “pure” in the sense of not being diluted, it may still be adulterated with synthetic chemicals, residual pesticides and with solvents, or it may be of mediocre medicinal quality.
Our in-house laboratory is staffed by highly qualified chemists and technicians. It employs state-of-the-art analytical equipment that allows us to perform highly specialized analyses, such as Gas Chromatography and Infrared Spectrometry. We use our own analysis results to confirm specification sheet reports and certificates of analyses received from 3rd party outside laboratories and vendors. As always, when it comes to Essential Oils, individual practitioners and consumers will decide for themselves which variety of a flower or leaf produces the essential oil that best suits their particular need. With NOW pure essential oils, you can be assured that you have the real thing.
I bought frontier brand cinnamon flavoring at a health food store. Is this cinnamon considered an essential oil? It says to use a few drops in baking cookies, cakes and other recipes, or 2 Tbsp. in a quart in a quart of simmering water with cloves and cinnamon sticks for relaxation. I have been using 1/4tsp. to 1/2tsp and sometimes more several times a day on cereals, tea and other foods thinking it might help control my blood sugar which was edging up in the pre-diabetes range. Is it safe to be consuming this much (organic sunflower oil and organic cinnamon oil are the 2 ingredients listed on bottle) in this manner?
Some essential oils qualify as GRAS flavoring agents for use in foods, beverages, and confectioneries according to strict Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) and flavorist standards. Pharmacopoeia standards for medicinal oils should be heeded. Some oils can be toxic to some domestic animals, cats in particular. The internal use of essential oils can pose hazards to pregnant women, as some can be abortifacients in dose 0.5–10 mL, and thus should not be used during pregnancy.