Essential oils for tummy issues. I have had a couple of clients with some minor tummy issues recently and I would like to look at these here. Along with the possible essential oils and blends that can be helpful to alleviate the problem.(more…)
I recently did The Allergy Show at the SEC in Glasgow and had a lot of people looking at the essential oils and asking questions about oils that they had bought and advice on what to look for when buying them. So I thought it would be helpful to give some information on this at this subject here.
We will examine what to look for when buying essential oils to ensure that you are getting the best therapeutic quality.
1. Essential oils should be in a dark coloured glass bottle to protect from light.
2. There should be a dropper to dispense the oils safely.
3. If you see the words fragrance oil or similar, it is probably a synthetic blend not a pure essential oil and so will have no therapeutic value. Look for ‘essential oil’ on the label.
4. Price is another likely indicator of quality, if all the oils in the shop or online are the same price, again they are unlikely to be of therapeutic grade. Due to the hugely diverse nature of: method of extraction; availability/success of harvest; the quantity of the plant required to make an essential oil, prices will be widely different. Sweet orange – easily obtained and extracted by expression, is more economic, whereas rose needs around 4,000kg of petals to obtain1 kg of oil, and so is at the upper end of the price scale.
5. The latin name of the plant (and any chemotypes, if relevant) should appear on the label on the bottle, this is important as there are many different varieties of some oils, eg lavender & eucalyptus, that have varying therapeutic uses and safety considerations.
6. Check the best before date – citrus oils (and some others) have shorter shelf lives, while base note oils such as patchouli have longer lives. Some oils degrade after a time eg black pepper, and change their use therapeutically . So it is always best to buy in small amounts.
7. If you are recommended to use the essential oils for internal use, ensure that the person selling them has completed a full course on essential oils for internal use and is insured for this (and/or is working directly with your GP/Clinician). This is an entirely different qualification and is usually not included in aromatherapy training here in the UK.
These are general suggestions, there are more detailed information which affects quality such as; the country of origin, the colour and texture of the essential oils. When buying for my business to supply you, I am very particular, dealing with only a few trusted suppliers. I also like to know how the oils are produced, ie that they come from an ethical supplier and of course I require an organic certification to stock them within my businsss.
These are a few baseline things that you should find helpful when looking for a good quality, therapeutic essential oil, but I am delighted to help with any further or more detailed queries that you may have. Just email me at: jacqui @ organicaj.co.uk
You can find all the organic essential oils that I currently stock here:
Aromatherapy Support and Blends for an Ageing Skin
I get asked for advice for ageing skin regularly, so I would like to look here at some support and aromatherapy blends that can be helpful for you.
Aromatherapy is a fabulous way to tackle the effects of the challenges your skin is up against that can potentially cause an ageing effect, such as weather, pollutants, stressors or simply the passage of time.
I had a client on the phone today, who said that she had really noticed that her skin was so much more moisturised and soft after switching to use my range of organic soaps – they have organic ingredients and do not strip the skin of its natural oils, but rather moisturise further. A great base for then using other oils/creams to moisturise further.
The basic care of self is important of course – good nutrition, exercise, plenty of sleep, helps the skin to appear at its best. Pollutants such as smoking, synthetic chemicals in skincare and the environment, etc are best to be minimised coming into contact with where it is possible. Protecting the skin and face in extreme weather conditions, or avoiding, again where possible, is a good strategy.
Aromatherapy on its own or in combination with regular massage can be extremely helpful to protect the skin and feed the skin properly. Skin cell renewal can slow down with age and aromatherapy oils and massage can help minimise this.
My recommendation for carrier/base oils to use would be rosehip, evening primrose, sweet almond, wheatgerm and jojoba. I personally use rosehip and evening primrose oil in my skin care regime. I would recommend that all these oils can be used on their own as a carrier, but wheatgerm, I would use blended with perhaps sweet almond, as it is very viscose on its own.
Essential oils that I would suggest for skin regeneration and care would be carrot, frankincense, neroli, sandalwood, patchouli, sweet orange and lavender.
I have a favourite combination that I have used for many of my aromatherapy clients in various forms depending on their individual skin type, their medical info and their life/emotional situation. It is rosehip carrier oil with frankincense, neroli and carrot essential oil. A good blend would be 10ml rosehip with 2 drops frankincence, 2 drops neroli and 1 drop carrot essential oil. This would be great for body, for use on the face drop the quantities down to 1 drop of each essential oil in 10ml of rosehip carrier oil.
Some other different blends to choose from: sweet almond 5ml, evening primrose oil 5ml with 2 drops lavender, 2 drops sandalwood and 1 drop patchouli. Again dropping down to 1 drop of each for use on face with 10ml carrier blend.
Or jojoba 10ml with 2 drops sweet orange, 2 drops frankincense and 1 drop sandalwood. dropping to 1 drop of each for use on face.
Try out the different combinations to see what texture of carrier oil, and what scent of blended oils pleases you the best and feels best on your skin. Gentle massage the oils into the body/face when you have time this can be a real pamper opportunity for yourself.
If blending your own is not for you, then you can try our ready made Aromatherapy Bath & Body Blends blends without any preservatives, colours or synthetics. All they contain are organic carrier oils and essential oils.
It is difficult I know in todays busy life to take time to look after yourself, but your skin will thank you in years to come if you do. If you can find time to have regular massage (including a face massage) this will be so beneficial, not just for your skin, but for your complete health and wellbeing.
I rush around a lot, running my business, but try to make sure that my skin is aways looked after. It always feel good to keep skin moisturised and the feeling of putting good quality, nourishing oils on your face and body, I find extremely pleasurable.
For complex medical conditions always contact a qualified aromatherapist or your medical professional.
I have been asked by a few clients recently about the problem of cellulite. It is an issue that is seen almost exclusively in women. Cellulite starts with a build-up of toxins that the body reacts to with water retention to try to dilute the toxins. The connective tissue and the fat cells then harden and traps the water, which causes the ‘orange peel’ effect.
Aromatherapy can be helpful for cellulite. I would recommend simultaneously looking at diet/nutrition and exercise in combination with aromatherapy. Aromatherapy treatment is not an overnight answer (as nothing really is for this stubborn condition), but rather a longer term approach. It all depends how long the condition has been present and how severe it is. But aromatherapy can be very effective and it is a pleasant treatment to undertake
Using self massage, you would be working to encourage your lymphatic system to work better, and to balance hormones. You can use a loofah, brush or perhaps a massage glove on the area. Brush gently but firmly towards the heart.
It has been found that stress also can affect cellulite, by increasing the retention of toxins in the body . Aromatherapy of course, can be fabulous for relaxation. Using oils such as sweet orange, lavender, geranium, neroli can be great for combating stress and to help the body to release toxins.
When working with aromatherapy and cellulite – it is beneficial to not stick with one particular blend, but keep the blend changing for optimum effect.
As well as self massage, you could consider visiting a specialised lymphatic drainage massage practitioner, and perhaps in between those sessions, if stress is a factor see a qualified aromatherapist for an aromatherapy massage to aid relaxation.
Aromatherapy oils that are helpful for cellulite would be black pepper, geranium, grapefruit, lemon, lime, rosemary or juniper.
A couple of suggested blends are
10ml Evening Primrose Oil with black pepper 1 drop, grapefruit 3 drops,
lemon 2 drops.
10ml evening primrose oil with rosemary 1 drop, geranium 2 drops, grapefruit
Use this blend daily to self-massage onto the skin, perhaps after bathing/showering and skin brushing.
For complex medical conditions always contact a qualified aromatherapist or your medical professional.
With the changes in the weather from freezing cold to roasting hot – some of us have been caught out with the sun. So I thought it would be helpful to suggest some aromatherapy essential oil blends to soothe skin that has been in the sun or to replenish moisture after sun exposure.
It is, of course, preferable to always use sun cream with a good spf before going into the sun and limit your time in the sun. These blends can be used as replenishment for skin, this is ideal. Sometimes however we need to soothe the skin as well. So here are some suggestions for you:-
One suggested blend would be 10ml calendula macerate, 5ml jojoba, 5ml sesame, 10ml aloe vera gel with 8 drops lavender, 2 drops roman chamomile, 2 drops tea tree, 1 drop german chamomile, 1 drop peppermint.
Another possible blend would be 10ml calendula macerate and 20ml aloe vera gel. 9 drops lavender, 3 drops carrot seed, 3 drops frankincense, 2 drops roman chamomile, 1 drop peppermint.
To mix the blends use a spoon or a stirring stick to stir to blend the oils and gel completely before use on the skin. You can of course experiment with the suggested oils, but keep to the quantities suggested for safe usage.
I hope these aromatherapy oil blends to soothe skin after sun exposure are helpful to re – mositurise, calm and protect skin.
If your skin is red and tight, then it may be preferable to use a couple of drops of pure lavender on the area first, as that is an emergency treatment for minor burns, then use one of the blends thereafter. You may need someone to help you if the sunburn is on your back.
For severely damaged or burnt skin always seek medical advice. For complex medical conditions always contact a qualified aromatherapist or your medical professional.
I have this year been working a lot with grief and loss, both with many of my clients – and in my own life too -after losing my lovely dog Bruno, in late January. Essential oils and blends are incredibly gentle, while being amazingly powerful to help manage these difficult experiences. I’m working with someone right now who is caring for someone with a terminal condition, the essential oils are a excellent tool to support, calm and uplift.
Having mentioned all the individual oils I would reach for, it would be much more normal for me to use a blend. I am deliberately using low levels of essential oils, when faced with these emotional circumstances it is definitely a case of ‘less is more’ with essential oils. The first choice of essential oil blend would probably be 1 drop rose otto, 2 drops frankincense, 1 drop cypress. Use in a diffuser, or oil burner. Alternatively the way I prefer to use a pure essential oil blend is on a tissue by my pillow overnight.
If you prefer a blend for use on the body, mix these essential oils with a carrier such as sweet almond or sunflower (10ml) for using on the body. I recommend to clients to use a blend with carrier oil on the upper chest area, gently rubbed into this area of the body before sleep, then again if you wish to use it during the day, especially when you are feeling very affected with grief, some people also like to use a blend on the pulse points on the wrists.
Another helpful blend would be 1 drop neroli, 2 drops lavender, 1 drop roman chamomile. Or 1 drop rose otto, 2 drops petitgrain, 1 drop clary sage. Use these blends in the same way as suggested above.
My recommendation would be to use a blend that you like the smell of very much,and the gentle, comforting fragrance will soothe you when you need it most. For an ‘off the shelf’ ready made blend, you could find our Aromatherapy Bath & Body Oil Restful Evening which contains lavender, rose geranium and roman chamomile, very helpful indeed.
Everyone reacts differently and copes with grief and loss in a different way, there is no textbook way to manage it. The joy of essential oils is there are so many different oils to choose to suit our differing needs and when you blend them together they give a more powerful synergy – and create a completely new fragrance. You can tweak the amounts of each essential oil in the blends to, which will create yet another fragrance. Find an oil or blend that really resonates with you right now. Be aware also as you journey forward through processing these emotions, you may be drawn to different oils or blends, and I would recommend that you listen to your own inner guidance on this.
In this article I have spoken solely about a self-help aromatherapy approach to grief and loss. Some of my clients first came to see me for aromatherapy massage because they were looking for help and support with their emotions. Again, you may find yourself attracted to different therapies, find the one which is most aligned to your own individual needs, but you could find therapy and/or counselling extremely helpful. Talking about your grief and loss to sympathetic friends/family members or a trained professional can be greatly comforting.
Be gentle with yourself, and take time to take care of yourself at all times. This is true for everyone, but especially for those who care for others, as they often do not see themselves as a priority, but ideally to care for others, we firstly need to be ok ourselves.
If you have a complex medical history/medications always check with your GP before using essential oils, or ask a qualified aromatherapist