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Everything You Need to Know about Essential Oils

Everything You Need to Know about Essential Oils

Everything you need to know about Essential Oils

 Most people say that the Essential Oils are the nature’s best kept secret. But i say that the Essential Oils are nature’s boon to the people of this world. With various benefits in terms of health and being simplistic in usage and application, makes them the best choice to go for. The usage of Essential Oils dates back as far as 2000 years ago. Over two thousand years ago, Ginger root essential oil was widely used in ancient China and has been used in traditional herbal medicine and for various other health remedies for hundreds of years throughout Europe. Canarium luzonicum, commonly known as elemi, is a tree native to the Philippines. It’s essential oil, which is called as Elemi Oil, when mixed along with Frankincense, Galbanum and Myrrh, was used in the embalming process of the ancient Egyptians over 2000 years ago. 

In this article, we are going to discuss about almost everything you need to know about essential oils. First we will start with Health Benefits of Essential Oils and then we will go through the production process of essential oils and last we will finish, by describing what aromatherapy is.

Health Benefits of Essential Oils

You probably won't believe me if i said that there are innumerable health benefits using essential oils, especially if you are new to this stuff. Different types of essential oils are used to treat different types of ailments and used as health remedies. For example, Vetiver oil may help in reducing anxiety, depression, stress, nervousness by settling the nerves and calming the mind. Know more about Health Benefits of Essential Oils.

How Essential Oils are Produced

There are a lot of different methods involved in the extraction process of essential oils and most of them require complex laboratory equipment. Most extraction methods are based on mixing essential oils with various solvents like alcohol, fat, oils but not with water. Even though there are a lot of ways known for the extraction of essential oils, only five ways are efficient enough and are widely used in the extraction process of essential oils. They are using:

     Distillation

     Expression

     Enfleurage

     Solvents

     Carbon Dioxide

Now, let’s discuss about each of the essential oils extraction process in detail.

Distillation

The purest of the essential oils are obtained using this method. Essential oils are extracted from the plants by suspending them over boiling water and the steam pulls out the oils from the plant. These are oils are now mixed with steam and this steam is stored in a vessel and then cooled down. Then this steam converts into water, which contains the essential oils. Since essential oils do not mix with water, they get separated. The remaining water is the by-product of this process and it is called as “Hydrosol”.  Hydrosols are very expensive and in aromatherapy, they are mostly used in cosmetics to moisturize skin.

Expression

This is the most direct method of obtaining or extracting essential oils from plants. This method involves pressing of plants or seeds with great pressure and the oils present in them are obtained easily.

Enfleurage

This is a very old method and is rarely used in today’s world, except for France. One main reason might be because of it’s expensive process.  It involves usage of blossoms which are a set of sheets of warm fat that absorbs oils from the flowers. This process is repeated several times until the fat is completely infused with the oils and later the essential oils are obtained, by removing the fat using solvents.

Solvents

This method involves the usage of chemicals which says that the obtained essential oils are not pure. Unfortunately, this method is used widely now a days, because of inexpensiveness and increased productivity. That is one of the reason why, the expected results not obtaining using essential oils.

Carbon Dioxide

Although being expensive, this is one of most interesting and expensive method of extracting essential oils. By using carbon dioxide to extract essential oils, the scent of the obtained oils is very similar to that of the plants itself.

Aromatherapy

Aroma means scent.  As the name itself suggests, Aromatherapy makes use of fragrance of plants or flowers to improve quality of life for many challenges . Even though we are not aware of it, Aromatherapy is everywhere and we do it autonomously throughout our daily life activities. For example, taking a whiff out of a flower or a spice in our kitchen etc..

Although Aromatherapy became very popular in the recent years, its applications are rooted back to over two thousand years ago. Aromatherapy has many benefits such as reducing stress, nullifying depression, soothing our soul, giving a good night’s sleep and making us more energetic and hyperactive. Realizing these benefits, hospitals now a days are trying to aromatherapy as part of their prescription to relax their patients. Since Aromatherapy involves fragrance as part of their process, essential oils are used to get the fragrance directly and improving the results much further.

Learn about :

Being Mindful when using Essential Oils

How to use Essential Oils effectively for best results

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