Healthy Beginnings

CHEMISTRY of Essential Oils

By Bill Nickerson
Aromatherapy is the therapeutic use of natural essential oils, introduced into the body via respiratory tract, skin and/or mucosa. It is a wonderful, wise and completely scientific method of preventing and healing many ailments. Of course, aromatherapy cannot substitute for modern medicine and its numerous pharmaceutical compounds. However, there is a place for everything. Without rejecting modern medicine, we can speak of the advantages of a whole number of naturally pure essential oils in comparison with modern pharmaceutical products, which will prevent and heal a range of pathologies.
For more than 6,000 years, mankind has been acquainted with the wonderful effects of natural essential oils, and their healing and purifying properties and unique fragrances. For centuries, essential oils have served as symbols of wealth and were highly valued as gifts. In Egypt, they were used to disinfect the air, provide skin care, and for aromatic baths. In India they believed that scents opened the soul and tuned the mind. Hippocrates recommended daily aromatic baths to his patients and essential oils for healing massage. It is said that he used aromatic fumigation to rid Athens of the plague.
The modern history of aromatherapy began in the early 20th century, when the French chemist, Rene-Maurice Gattefossé, accidentally burned his hand in his laboratory and dipped it into the nearest jar of liquid, a jar of Lavender oil. To his surprise, the burnt hand healed much quicker than usual, with no scars. This attracted Gattefossé’s attention and he began to study the properties of Lavender oil in more detail. The results of his research were published in his book,
Aromatherapy, still in print.
Scents are an inseparable part of our lives; we have known fragrances since childhood. Everyone knows the aroma of
garlic, tea with mint, grated lemon peel or fresh roses. But, once cut off, roses quickly wither, lemon peel dries out and it is impossible to find mint leaves under the snow. To overcome these limitations, people learned to collect scents of plants and conserve their magic properties by creating essential oils. Essential oils are scents that are concentrated into liquids. In this form, fragrances acquired high concentrations and ease of use.
For a scientist, essential oils are composite organic compounds of terpenes, alcohols and aldehydes, ketones and other hydrocarbons contained in the essential oil of plants. The chemistry of essential oils is complicated; the number of organic and inorganic ingredients of essential oils varies between 120 and 500. It is impossible to reproduce this chemistry artificially. Synthetic oils cannot have the healing properties of natural essential oils.
Because of their high concentration, essential oils should be used with some care: Never apply undiluted oil directly to skin or mucous membranes. It should always be diluted with a carrier oil for topical application. Phototoxic reactions may occur with citrus peel oils such as lemon or orange. Always check first to see if you are allergic to an oil. Ingestion of essential oil can only be recommended after consulting a doctor and use during pregnancy or in case of epilepsy should only be carried out under professional medical guidance. In the case of heart disorders, bronchial asthma and asthmatic syndromes, consult your doctor before using essential oils. Essential oils must be kept tightly closed, in a dark place and out of the reach of children.
References:
1.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aromatherapy
2.VIVASAN Product Reference
For more info, call Lana Nickerson at 775-826-8482.

chemistry-essential-oils-300Aromatherapy is the therapeutic use of natural essential oils, introduced into the body via respiratory tract, skin and/or mucosa. It is a wonderful, wise and completely scientific method of preventing and healing many ailments. Of course, aromatherapy cannot substitute for modern medicine and its numerous pharmaceutical compounds. However, there is a place for everything. Without rejecting modern medicine, we can speak of the advantages of a whole number of naturally pure essential oils in comparison with modern pharmaceutical products, which will prevent and heal a range of pathologies.

For more than 6,000 years, mankind has been acquainted with the wonderful effects of natural essential oils, and their healing and purifying properties and unique fragrances. For centuries, essential oils have served as symbols of wealth and were highly valued as gifts. In Egypt, they were used to disinfect the air, provide skin care, and for aromatic baths. In India they believed that scents opened the soul and tuned the mind. Hippocrates recommended daily aromatic baths to his patients and essential oils for healing massage. It is said that he used aromatic fumigation to rid Athens of the plague.

The modern history of aromatherapy began in the early 20th century, when the French chemist, Rene-Maurice Gattefossé, accidentally burned his hand in his laboratory and dipped it into the nearest jar of liquid, a jar of Lavender oil. To his surprise, the burnt hand healed much quicker than usual, with no scars. This attracted Gattefossé’s attention and he began to study the properties of Lavender oil in more detail. The results of his research were published in his book,Aromatherapy, still in print.

Scents are an inseparable part of our lives; we have known fragrances since childhood. Everyone knows the aroma ofgarlic, tea with mint, grated lemon peel or fresh roses. But, once cut off, roses quickly wither, lemon peel dries out and it is impossible to find mint leaves under the snow. To overcome these limitations, people learned to collect scents of plants and conserve their magic properties by creating essential oils. Essential oils are scents that are concentrated into liquids. In this form, fragrances acquired high concentrations and ease of use.

For a scientist, essential oils are composite organic compounds of terpenes, alcohols and aldehydes, ketones and other hydrocarbons contained in the essential oil of plants. The chemistry of essential oils is complicated; the number of organic and inorganic ingredients of essential oils varies between 120 and 500. It is impossible to reproduce this chemistry artificially. Synthetic oils cannot have the healing properties of natural essential oils.

Because of their high concentration, essential oils should be used with some care: Never apply undiluted oil directly to skin or mucous membranes. It should always be diluted with a carrier oil for topical application. Phototoxic reactions may occur with citrus peel oils such as lemon or orange. Always check first to see if you are allergic to an oil. Ingestion of essential oil can only be recommended after consulting a doctor and use during pregnancy or in case of epilepsy should only be carried out under professional medical guidance. In the case of heart disorders, bronchial asthma and asthmatic syndromes, consult your doctor before using essential oils. Essential oils must be kept tightly closed, in a dark place and out of the reach of children.

References:

1.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aromatherapy

2.VIVASAN Product Reference

For more info, call Lana Nickerson at 775-826-8482.