Lavender Oil

Lavender Essential Oil (Lavandula angustifolia/officinalis)

Lavender is perhaps the most well-known of the essential oils and for good reason. Lavender essential oil is renowned for its many beneficial properties, including promoting calm, relaxation, and being a nervous tension reliever. It can also be added to a carrier oil to help reduce the appearance of scars and wrinkles and help soothe alterations in skin integrity, such as during sun exposure or a minor cooking burn.

Early and modern aromatherapy texts advocate for lavender’s use as an antibacterial essential oil. The leaves and stems of the plant were used to prepare decoctions against digestive system diseases and rheumatism, and lavender was valued for its cosmetic purposes. The Romans used lavender oil for bathing, cooking and purifying the air. And in the Bible, lavender oil was among the aromatics used for anointing and healing.

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You will find Lavender essential oil in many of Mother Jai’s products.

The proven health benefits of lavender essential oil include its ability to reduce stress and anxiety, eliminate nervous tension, relieve pain, disinfect the scalp and skin, prevent acne, enhance blood circulation, and treat respiratory problems. Lavender oil is used extensively in aromatherapy and works as a natural sleep aid. Its potent antibacterial nature makes it a wonderful household cleanser and deodorant.

Lavender essential oil is extracted from the flowers of the lavender plant (Lavandula angustifolia), primarily through steam distillation. Lavender flowers are known for their calming fragrance and have been used for making potpourri for centuries. The Latin name of lavender is Lavare, which means “to wash”. This is because lavender flowers and lavender essential oil have been used since ancient times by the Romans, Persians, Greeks, and Egyptians as a bath additive and perfume.

Lavender essential oil is a pure oil and differs from certain commercial lavender oils which may be diluted and are often sold as perfumes. Lavender perfume and body sprays are popular due to their fresh and floral scent. On the other hand, pure lavender essential oil is frequently used in various forms including as an aromatherapy oil, in gels, infusions, lotions, soaps, baby products, and candles. It is also used to make tea, lemonades, syrups, aromatic beverages, and in baked dishes.

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Lavender (scientific name Lavandula angustifolia) is commonly contaminated with related species, including Lavandula hybrida, which is a cross between Lavandula angustifolia and Lavandula latifolia, from which lavandin oil is obtained.

PARTS USED: Flowering tops

EXTRACTION METHOD: Water-steam distilled

NOTE CLASSIFICATION: Middle

AROMA: Sweet, floral, herbaceous

BLENDS WELL WITH: Bergamot, Black Pepper, Cedar Atlas, Chamomile, Clary Sage, Clove Bud, Cypress, Eucalyptus, Geranium, Grapefruit, Juniper Berry, Cistus / Labdanum, Lemon, Lemongrass, Mandarin, Sweet Marjoram, Oakmoss Absolute, Palmarosa, Patchouli, Peppermint, Pine, Ravensara aromatica, Rose, Rosemary, Tea Tree, Thyme, and Vetivert.

Major Constituents of Bulgarian Lavender Essential Oil: Linalyl acetate, Linalool, (Z)-B-Ocimene, Lavandulyl acetate, Terpinene-4-ol, B-Caryophyllene, (E)-B-Farnesene, (E)-B-Ocimene, 3-Octanyl acetate, etc. See Essential Oil Safety for constituent breakdown for oils distilled from Lavender angustifolia grown in other regions.

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[E. Schmidt, The Characteristics of Lavender Oils from Eastern Europe. (Perfumer & Flavorist 28, 2003), 48-60. Source cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 326.]

BENEFITS & USES OF LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL

Acne, allergies, anxiety, asthma, athlete’s foot, bruises, burns, chicken pox, colic, cuts, cystitis, depression, dermatitis, dysmenorrhea, earache, flatulence, headache, hypertension, insect bites, insect repellent, itching, labor pains, migraine, oily skin, rheumatism, scabies, scars, sores, sprains, strains, stress, stretch marks, vertigo, whooping cough. [Julia Lawless, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (Rockport, MA: Element Books, 1995), 56-67.]

Aids in Digestion: Lavender oil is useful for digestion because it increases the mobility of food within the intestine. The oil also stimulates the production of gastric juices and bile, thus aiding in the treatment of indigestion, stomach pain, colic, flatulence, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Air Freshener: The same way you use lavender oil as a perfume, you can use it around your home as a natural, toxic-free air freshener. Either spray lavender oil around your home or try diffusing it. To create a relaxing atmosphere in your bedroom before you fall asleep, try spraying the lavender oil and water mixture directly onto your bed sheets or pillow.

Anti-bacterial: Regular use of lavender essential oil provides resistance to a variety of diseases. Lavender has antibacterial and antiviral qualities that make it perfect for defending the body against rare diseases like TB, typhoid, and diphtheria, according to early research in the 20th century.

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Antidepressant: Some research shows that lavender aromatherapy reduces depression after childbirth in some women.

Antioxidant Protection: Free radicals, like toxins, chemicals and pollutants, are arguably the most dangerous and most common risk factor for every disease that affects Americans today. Free radicals are responsible for shutting down your immune system and can cause unbelievable damage to your body. Thankfully, lavender essential oil is a natural antioxidant that works to prevent and reverse disease

Bug Repellent: The smell of lavender essential oil is potent for many types of bugs like mosquitoes, midges, and moths. Apply some lavender oil on the exposed skin when outside to prevent these irritating bites. Furthermore, if you do happen to be bitten by one of those bugs, lavender essential oil has anti-inflammatory qualities that will reduce the irritation and the pain associated with bug bites.

Chemical Free Lip Balm: Lavender oil is excellent for preventing sunburns on the lips and also healing chapped, dried lips. Try adding a couple of drops of oil to shea butter, jojoba oil, coconut oil or another “carrier oil” and then rubbing it into your lips for protection whenever you will be in the sun.

Colic Relief in Babies: through its pain relieving and anti-anxiety benefits, babies with colic experience calming relief when applied to the feet or diffused in the room. Results from one small study show that massaging a combination of lavender and almond oils onto the belly of infants for 5-15 minutes at the onset of colic reduces crying time by about 7 hours per week.

Complementary Cancer Therapy: A 2012 study published in the African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines shows that aromatherapy, particularly using lavender oil, helps patients with cancer cope with stress, nausea, chronic pain and depression. Because lavender oil works to stimulate the immune system, boost mood, improve sleep and fight stress, it can be used as a therapeutic agent.

There is a significant research on the effects of lavender, in combination with other essential oils, as a way to prevent the occurrence of breast cancer in mice. This could be an indication of an increased chance of lavender battling carcinogenic effects and the presence of cancer.

Massaging lavender oil into the back of your neck, chest, wrists and temples can induce relaxing and calming effects. If you are experiencing muscle or joint pain, or pain at the site of injections, apply 2–3 drops of lavender to the affected area.

Dementia Support: because lavender improves circulation and has strong antioxidant benefits the chances of developing dementia are reduced. It can also help to improve events and their longevity when patients have dementia. Some research shows that using lavender oil in a diffuser at night reduces agitation in people with dementia.

Diabetes Natural Treatment:  In a nutshell, lavender essential oil treatment protected the body from the following diabetes symptoms:

  • Increased blood glucose (the hallmark of diabetes)
  • Metabolic disorders (especially fat metabolism)
  • Weight gain
  • Liver and kidney antioxidant depletion
  • Liver and kidney dysfunction
  • Liver and kidney lipoperoxidation (when free radicals “steal” necessary fat molecules from cell membranes)

Ear Infections: Early research shows that administering ear drops containing lavender and other herbal extracts improves ear pain in people with ear infections. However, this herbal combination does not appear to be more effective than using a skin-numbing agent along with the antibiotic amoxicillin.

Fall Prevention: There is some evidence that attaching a pad with lavender oil onto the neckline of clothing reduces the risk of falling by 43% in nursing home residents.

Flavor Booster: Lavender is a great flavor enhancer in things like grain-free muffins, teas and even salad dressings. Lavender oil is completely edible, but you will want to use a very small amount since the taste is very powerful. You’ll also want to purchase only a high-quality, 100 percent pure grade oil from a reputable company.

Heals Cuts & Burns: Widely known for its antimicrobial properties, for centuries lavender oil has been used to prevent various infections and combat bacterial and fungal disorders. Research shows that lavender oil speeds the healing of burns, cuts, scrapes and wounds — and a big part of this is because of its antimicrobial compounds.

A study published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine evaluated how lavender’s antimicrobial ability is enhanced when it’s blended with other essential oils, like clove, cinnamon and tea tree oil. Researchers found that a 1:1 ratio of these oils was found to be the most effective in fighting against Candida albicans and Staph aureus — two common causes of many fungal and bacterial infections that lead to respiratory pneumonia and skin funguses.

A 2016 study conducted on rats found that lavender oil promoted wound healing in the early phase by accelerating the formation of granulation tissue (tissue from the healing surface of the skin) and promoting collagen synthesis. The area of wounds treated with lavender oil was significantly decreased compared to the control group.

Healthy Skin & Hair: Most likely due to its antimicrobial and antioxidant characteristics, lavender essential oil mixed with a carrier oil (like coconut, sunflower, or grapeseed oil) has profound benefits on your skin. Using lavender oil topically can help to improve a number of skin conditions, from canker sores to allergic reactions, acne and age spots. Its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties help to ease skin conditions and reverse signs of aging.

Studies also show that lavender oil, along with other essential oils like thyme, rosemary and cedarwood, can significantly improve alopecia areata and hair loss when massaged into the scalp daily.

Improves Blood Circulation: Lavender essential oil is also good for improving the circulation of blood in the body. Researchers from the Department of Cardiovascular Science and Medicine, Chiba University in Japan suggests that aromatherapy using lavender oil has beneficial effects on coronary circulation. It also lowers blood pressure and is often used as a treatment for hypertension. This means that not only do the organs increase their levels of oxygenation, promoting muscle strength and health, but brain activity can have a noticeable boost, skin remains bright and flushed with blood, and the body is protected from the risks of heart attack and atherosclerosis often associated with poor blood circulation.

Early research shows that using an essential oil mixture of lavender, lemon, and ylang ylang as aromatherapy might reduce systolic blood pressure (the top number) but not diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number) in people with high blood pressure.

Induces Sleep: Because of lavender oil’s sedative and calming properties, it works to improve sleep and treat insomnia. A 2015 study involving 158 mothers in their postpartum period were divided into the control or intervention group. The intervention group inhaled lavender oil before bed four times a week for eight weeks. The women using lavender oil displayed a significant improvement in sleep quality when compared to the control group.

Early research shows that using lavender oil in a vaporizer overnight, or on a gauze pad left beside the bed, might help some people with mild insomnia sleep better.

A mixture of lavender oil, Roman chamomile essential oil and magnesium oil is the best combination for improving sleep. Just rub this mixture into the back of your neck and wrists to induce a calm, peaceful feeling.

Lice Deterrent: it has been shown to be very effective on lice, lice eggs, and nits.

Mouth Sores: Research shows that applying 2 drops of lavender oil to the affected area three times daily can reduce canker sore swelling and pain and shorten the time it takes for canker sores to heal.

Natural Perfume: Do you want to smell good without using toxic perfumes? Lavender oil is a great scent for both women and men. You can either try adding pure oil directly to your skin, or you can dilute oil in water or with a carrier oil for a more subtle scent.

If you’d like to rub the oil right onto your skin, try adding 2–3 drops into your palms and then rubbing your hands together. Then rub the oil directly onto your skin or hair. You can also try using 2 drops of lavender oil added to a spray bottle with about ½ cup of water. Shake up the spray bottle and then spray whatever you’d like.

Neuroprotective Effect: A study published in Brain Research (February 2014) showed that lavender oil has the potential to reduce brain edema and improve functional ability in people affected by cerebral ischemia. While lavender has traditionally been used in many cosmetic and therapeutic applications due to medicinal properties, this study confirms that lavender oil has potent neuroprotective properties. Furthermore, the oil helps increase antioxidant capacity in the body and inhibits oxidative stress.

Promotes Wound Healing: Lavender essential oil is an excellent essential oil to have on hand as it helps treat minor cuts, bruises, and burns. According to a 2016 study published in the BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine journal, the essential oil boosts the synthesis of collagen and heals skin tissues. Just rub a few drops of lavender essential oil on the bruised area or on burns to increase blood circulation and healing. It can also be used to soothe skin irritations, razor bumps, and sunburn.

Relieves Headaches: It’s one of the best essential oils for headaches because it induces relaxation and relieves tension. It works as a sedative, anti-anxiety, anticonvulsant and calming agent. According to a study published in European Neurology, people struggling with migraine headaches saw a significant reduction in pain when they inhaled lavender oil for 15 minutes.

Relieves Pain: Lavender essential oil is known as an excellent remedy for various types of pains including those caused by sore and tense muscles, muscular aches, rheumatism, sprains, backache, and lumbago.

Several studies have found that lavender oil helps as a natural painkiller. Simply rubbing lavender into the area of concern can reduce inflammation and pain intensity, helping to alleviate the symptoms of many health conditions.

Another study, published in the Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine, found that a combination of lavender, marjoram, peppermint and black pepper essential oils improved neck pain when applied to the affected area daily.

And yet another recent study proved that lavender oil, when massaged into the skin, can help to relieve dysmenorrhea, which is associated with menstrual pain and cramping in the lower abdomen. The results of this study suggest that lavender oil can be used as a natural remedy for PMS and menstrual cramps.

Relieves Stress & Anxiety:  In 2013, an evidence-based study published by the International Journal of Psychiatry in Clinical Practice found that supplementing with 80 milligram capsules of lavender essential oil alleviates anxiety, sleep disturbance and depression. Additionally, in the study there were no adverse side effects, drug interactions or withdrawal symptoms from using lavender oil.

The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology published a human study in 2014 that revealed that Silexan (otherwise known as lavender oil preparation) was more effective against generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) than placebos and the prescription medicine paroxetine. After treatment, the study found zero instances of withdrawal symptoms or adverse side effects.

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS): One study shows that massaging the legs with lavender oil for 10 minutes twice weekly can reduce the severity of restless legs syndrome in people with kidney failure who are undergoing dialysis.

Stimulates Urine Flow: Lavender essential oil is good for urinary disorders because of its stimulating effect on urine production. Furthermore, it helps in restoring hormonal balance and reducing cystitis or inflammation of the urinary bladder. It also reduces associated cramps with these and other disorders.

Stomach Discomfort: Many people find the scent of lavender to be soothing to the stomach. If you are feeling nauseous or know that you are going to be traveling in a car of plane and are prone to motion sickness, spray some lavender oil on your skin and clothes, or rub it into your temples, next and palms.

Supports Brain Function: Research also shows that lavender oil serves as a natural treatment for Alzheimer’s disease! Studies conducted on rats show that inhaling lavender essential oil vapor can help to prevent brain oxidative stress and improve cognitive impairment.

Also, in 2012, the Swiss journal Molecules printed the results of a study that shockingly proved that lavender oil is a viable treatment option for neurological dysfunctions such as stroke. Researchers believe that lavender’s neuroprotective effects are due to its antioxidant properties.

Treats Acne: Pure lavender essential oil inhibits the bacteria that cause the initial acne infection, helps to regulate the over-excretion of sebum by hormonal manipulation and can reduce the signs of scarring after the acne has begun to heal. Adding a small amount of lavender essential oil to other skin creams or ointments can greatly increase the potential for relief and healing.

Treats Eczema: Premium organic lavender oil is used to treat various skin disorders such as acne, wrinkles, psoriasis, and other inflammatory conditions. It is commonly used to speed up the healing process of wounds, cuts, burns, and sunburns because it improves the formation of scar tissues. It is also added to chamomile to treat eczema.

Treats Respiratory Disorders: Lavender oil is widely used for various respiratory problems including throat infection, flu, cough, cold, asthma, sinus congestion, bronchitis, whooping cough, laryngitis, and tonsillitis. It can be put in in an aromatherapy essential oil diffuser or alternatively, it can be topically applied to the skin of neck, chest, and back. It is also added to many vaporizers and inhalers that are commonly used for cold and cough. The stimulating nature of lavender essential oil can also loosen up the phlegm and relieve congestion associated with respiratory conditions, thus speeding up the recovery process and helping the body naturally eliminate phlegm and other unwanted material. The vapor of lavender essential oil also has antibacterial qualities which can battle respiratory tract infections.

LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL SIDE EFFECTS & PRECAUTIONS

For most people, lavender oil benefits are all that you’ll experience and using lavender oil is completely safe; however, there has not been an extensive amount of scientific research done on lavender oil interactions with other medications, or for its use in pregnant women, so there are certain situations where you will want to use caution.

Medication Interactions: If you are already taking any prescription medication for sleep-related disorders or for depression, be cautious of the fact that lavender can increase the effectiveness of these medications. Even if you use an over-the-counter sleep aid or any type of sedatives (even cough or flu medicine), keep in mind that lavender makes many people sleepy and even somewhat drowsy, so it’s best to not combine lavender oil with other medications or sleep-related supplements. If you are planning on undergoing anesthesia in the near future, you will also want to avoid using lavender oil.

Pregnant Women: Lavender oil is generally considered safe for women who are pregnant and nursing. Because it can have a relaxing effect on muscles and can also affect hormone levels, use lavender with caution in your third trimester. It’s best to speak with your doctor about use of any essential oils when pregnant, since it has not been guaranteed that these are safe at this time.

Children: Lavender oil is considered generally safe for children to use, although there is some concern that lavender’s effect on hormone levels could be harmful for boys who have not yet gone through puberty. Although there isn’t strong evidence for lavender being a hormone disrupter (only 1–2 very small studies were ever completed), parents are told to use caution if using lavender oil frequently on young children.

Ingesting Lavender Oil: Studies have primarily looked at the effects of using lavender oil topically on the skin or through inhalation. There have been no negative symptoms found when three drops of oil are mixed with a carrier oil and applied directly to the skin. A 2013 evidence-based article, however, highlighted that lavender can be ingested at a large dose of 80 to 160 milligrams without adverse effects, except for minor gastrointestinal symptoms. To avoid gastrointestinal irritation, keep internal use to a minimum and be careful if you have a sensitive digestive system. There are no known food interactions of lavender oil at this time.

References:

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Ginger Oil

Ginger Root Essential Oil (Zingiber officinale)

Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is a flowering plant whose rhizome, ginger root or simply ginger, is widely used as a spice or a folk medicine. It is a herbaceous perennial which grows annual pseudostems (false stems made of the rolled bases of leaves) about a meter tall bearing narrow leaf blades. The inflorescences bear pale yellow with purple flowers and arise directly from the rhizome on separate shoots. Ginger is in the family Zingiberaceae, to which also belong turmeric (Curcuma longa), cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum), and galangal.

Ginger produces clusters of white and pink flower buds that bloom into yellow flowers. Because of its aesthetic appeal and the adaptation of the plant to warm climates, it is often used as landscaping around subtropical homes. It is a perennial reed-like plant with annual leafy stems, about a meter (3 to 4 feet) tall. Traditionally, the rhizome is gathered when the stalk withers; it is immediately scalded, or washed and scraped, to kill it and prevent sprouting. The fragrant perisperm of the Zingiberaceae is used as sweetmeats by Bantu, and also as a condiment and sialagogue.

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Ginger originated in the tropical rainforests from the Indian subcontinent to Southern Asia where ginger plants show considerable genetic variation. As one of the first spices exported from the Orient, ginger arrived in Europe during the spice trade, and was used by ancient Greeks and Romans. The distantly related dicots in the genus Asarum are commonly called wild ginger because of their similar taste.

You will find Ginger Oil in Mother Jai’s Aroma Sprays and Body Oils.

The characteristic fragrance and flavor of ginger result from volatile oils that compose 1-3% of the weight of fresh ginger, primarily consisting of zingerone, shogaols and gingerols with [6]-gingerol (1-[4′-hydroxy-3′-methoxyphenyl]-5-hydroxy-3-decanone) as the major pungent compound. Zingerone is produced from gingerols during drying, having lower pungency and a spicy-sweet aroma.

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Raw ginger is composed of 79% water, 18% carbohydrates, 2% protein, and 1% fat. In 100 grams (a standard amount used to compare with other foods), raw ginger supplies 80 Calories and contains moderate amounts of vitamin B6 (12% of the Daily Value, DV) and the dietary minerals, magnesium (12% DV) and manganese (11% DV), but otherwise is low in nutrient content.

The chemical composition of the essential oil obtained from the rhizomes of Zingiber officinale Roscoe from Cuba was examined by combined GC and GC/MS. The oil was characterized by the presence of ar-curcumene (22.1%), zingiberene (11.7%), β-bisabolene (11.2%) and cadina-1,4-diene (12.5%).

Blending: Ginger oil blends well with many other essential oils including lemon, cedarwood, lime, eucalyptus, frankincense, geranium, rosemary, sandalwood, patchouli, myrtle, bergamot, rosewood, neroli, orange, and ylang-ylang.

Health Benefits Of Ginger Root Essential Oil (OrganicFacts.net)

Relieves Stomach Issues – Ginger root oil is one of the best remedies for indigestion, stomach ache, dyspepsia, colic, spasms, diarrhea, flatulence, and other stomach and bowel related problems. Ginger or ginger oil is often added to recipes, especially in India, as it helps in improving digestion. Ginger tea is also used for relieving stomach problems. Furthermore, it can increase your appetite, which is great for people who are trying to put on weight.

Treats Food Poisoning – Ginger oil is an antiseptic and carminative substance. As a result, it can be used to treat food poisoning. It is also used for treating intestinal infections and bacterial dysentery.

Effective Against Nausea – Research has shown that ginger root and its oil are also effective against nausea, motion sickness, and vomiting. Use of ginger may also result in a reduction of pregnancy-related vomiting in women.

Protects Against Malaria – Ginger root and ginger oil are effective against yellow fever and malaria as they have mosquito repelling qualities.

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Treats Respiratory disorders – Ginger root and ginger oil are both good expectorants, so they are effective in treating respiratory problems such as cold, cough, flu, asthma, bronchitis, and breathlessness. Ginger is very effective in removing mucus from the throat and lungs, so it is often added to tea. The health benefits of honey and ginger in treating respiratory problems are also well-known.

Reduces Inflammation – Ginger oil or ginger paste is often topically massaged on aching muscles to remove muscle strain. It is further believed that regular use of ginger leads to the reduction of prostaglandins, which are the compounds associated with pain. Therefore, ginger helps in pain relief. Recently, a few Chinese researchers have reported that ginger can be very effective in treating inflammation of the testicles.

The extract of ginger is often used in traditional medicine to reduce inflammation. Research has now proven that its anti-inflammatory properties can be attributed to the presence of a substance named zingibain. It is analgesic in nature and reduces the pain caused by muscle aches, arthritis, rheumatic conditions, headaches, and migraines.

Treats Menstrual Issues – Irregular and painful menstrual discharges can be treated with ginger root oil. Its anti-inflammatory properties help in reducing the production of prostaglandins, which often cause painful uterine contractions during menstruation.

Protects Heart Health – In China, it is strongly believed that ginger boosts your heart health. Many people use ginger oil as a measure to prevent as well as cure various heart conditions. Preliminary research has indicated that ginger may be helpful in reducing cholesterol levels and preventing blood clots. With reduced cholesterol levels and blood clotting, the chance of blood vessel blockage decreases, thereby reducing the incidences of heart attacks and strokes.

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Lowers Stress – Ginger oil, being an essential oil, is stimulating and therefore, relieves depression, mental stress, exhaustion, dizziness, restlessness, and anxiety.

Eliminates Impotency – Ginger is helpful for male health as well. Since ginger root and its oil are an aphrodisiac in nature, they are effective in eliminating impotency and preventing premature ejaculation.

Dissolves Kidney Stones – It is also believed that ginger root juice is able to dissolve kidney stones. Ginger root oil aids in keeping you hydrated thereby helping in expelling the stones, if there are any.

Hair Care – Ginger oil is rich in minerals, which aid in hair care. Also, it helps get rid of the dry, itchy scalp, which is often a major cause of dandruff. The oil’s antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties also assist you in keeping the scalp clean and healthy.

Word of Caution: It should be noted that ginger oil is very strong and should, therefore, be used carefully and sparingly.

Research on Ginger

Ginger has been used for stomach upset, motion sickness, nausea, and vomiting. Some herbal/diet supplement products have been found to contain possibly harmful impurities/additives. Check with your pharmacist for more details about the particular brand you use. The FDA has not reviewed this product for safety or effectiveness. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Rheumatoid Arthritis – various phytochemical constituents of ginger have potential therapeutic roles in amelioration of RA symptoms and even possibly RA itself. It is expected that further elucidation of the molecular mechanisms behind the action of these phytochemicals not only can lead to discovery of new drugs for symptomatic relief of RA conditions like inflammation and pain, but also may make it possible to stop further progress or even reverse the damage caused by RA.

Motion Sickness – Ginger works by blocking the effects of serotonin, a chemical produced by the brain and stomach when a patient is nauseated. In a recent study, ginger was equally as effective in relieving motion sickness as Dramamine.

Morning Sickness – During pregnancy, approximately 70-80% of women experience nausea and vomiting. Many new studies have taken a therapeutic approach to treat pregnancy induced sickness. Ginger has a long history of pharmaceutical application, especially in China, Japan, and India. According to the results, ginger is a simple, accessible and convenient approach to gestational nausea.

Although Zingiber officinale (ginger) has been used for centuries among Asian cultures as an antiemetic, research directly assessing the effects of this herb in a variety of clinical as well as animal models remains sparse.  In those few studies reported, however, ginger has been shown to attenuate symptoms of nausea and vomiting in both clinical and laboratory settings.

Chemotherapy – In a double-blind study of women being treated for breast cancer, 500 mg of powered ginger was administered twice a day for three days. This benefited those patients experiencing nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy.

Dental Health – Orally, studies have demonstrated that gingerol, a compound in ginger, poses both antiviral and antifungal agents that promote salivary flow and reduce oral candidiasis.

Liver Health – Zingiber officinale acts as a nutraceutical agent against liver fibrosis.

Pain Relief – the available data provide tentative support for the anti-inflammatory role of Z. officinale constituents, which may reduce the subjective experience of pain in some conditions such as osteoarthritis.

Antimicrobial Activity – Zingiber officinale possesses remarkable antimicrobial activity, which is mainly due to naphthalenamine, decanal, and alfa.-copaene. According to these findings, it could be said that the methanolic extract act as antibacterial agents.

Anticancer Activity – Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is widely used all over the world as a spice and condiment in daily cooking. It is a natural food component with many active phenolic compounds such as shagaol and gingerol, and it has been shown to have anti-cancer and antioxidant effects. Ginger extract was able to reduce the incidence of liver neoplasms in rats, this is the first study reporting that the anti-cancer effect exhibited by ginger on liver cancer cells is mediated by inflammatory markers NFκB and TNF-α. Thus, the ginger extract may have a chemotherapeutic effect in the treatment of liver cancer.

Ginger’s pungent components offer powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities, making it useful in arthritis, Alzheimer’s, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. The active compound responsible for this effect is zingibain, an enzyme that counteracts inflammation. The active compounds contained in ginger are divided into two groups: volatile essential oils and fragrant or harsh phenol compounds. Among these volatile essential components, which constitute gingerol and shagelol have been accounted for antimicrobial activity of ginger.

Lowering Cholesterol – The ginger extract has reduced in serum LDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, triglycerides and phospholipids levels, as well as cellular cholesterol accumulation, reduce DPPH absorption, scavenge free radicals and it has potential to improve the histopathological lesion occurring in different layers of the arterial tissue. In the other word it is effective in attenuating of atherosclerosis development.

Hypertension – Adults who consume ginger daily have an 8 percent lower risk of developing hypertension (high blood pressure). A 2005 study found ginger may lower blood pressure through blockade of voltage-dependent calcium channels.

Side Effects of Ginger

Burning feeling in mouth/throat, abdominal pain, diarrhea, or heartburn may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these very unlikely but serious side effects occur: unusual bleeding/bruising, unusual drowsiness, irregular heartbeat. A very serious allergic reaction to ginger is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Before taking ginger, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details. If you have any of the following health problems, consult your doctor or pharmacist before using this product: bleeding problems, diabetes, gallstones, heart problems. This product might contain aristolochic acid, which can cause serious problems in the kidneys or urinary system (e.g., renal fibrosis, urinary tract cancer). Symptoms include an unusual change in the amount of urine or blood in the urine. Consult your pharmacist for more details about the contents of this ginger product. Liquid forms of this product may contain sugar and/or alcohol. Caution is advised if you have diabetes, alcohol dependence, or liver disease. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about using this product safely. During pregnancy, this product should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.

Before using ginger, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: medications/herbal products that may increase your risk of bleeding (e.g., “blood thinners” such as warfarin and heparin, anti-platelet drugs such as clopidogrel and ticlopidine, herbs such as danshen/garlic). Aspirin may also increase the risk of bleeding when used with this product. If your doctor has prescribed low doses of aspirin to prevent heart attack or stroke (usually at dosages of 81-325 milligrams a day), you should continue to take the aspirin. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.

Rosemary Ginger Oil

Recipes

How to Make Ginger Oil Infusion

Materials:

  • Fresh ginger
  • 1 1/2 cups olive oil
  • Oven-safe bowl
  • Cheese grater

Procedure:

  1. Rinse a cup of fresh ginger, including the skin, thoroughly, and let dry for a few hours.
  2. Pour the olive oil in an oven-safe bowl.
  3. Chop the ginger and then shred using a clean cheese grater. Add to the olive oil and mix well.
  4. Put the mixture in the oven and leave it to simmer under low heat (150 degrees Fahrenheit) for at least two hours.
  5. Pour the mixture through an unbleached cheese cloth to filter it and take out the bits of ginger. Once all the oil has been filtered, squeeze out the remaining oil from the cheese cloth.
  6. Transfer the ginger oil into clean vials or bottles and store in a cool dry place.

This ginger oil infusion can stay fresh for up to six months.

References:

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ginger
  2. https://www.herbal-supplement-resource.com/ginger-root.html
  3. https://www.organicfacts.net/ginger-root-oil.html
  4. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/beverage/lemon-ginger-tea.html
  5. https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/ginger-oil.aspx
  6. https://drericz.com/benefits-of-ginger-essential-oil/
  7. https://www.aromaweb.com/essential-oils/ginger-oil.asp
  8. https://www.livestrong.com/article/128211-benefits-ginger-oil/
  9. https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-92766/ginger-oil-oral/details
  10. https://draxe.com/ginger-essential-oil/
  11. https://draxe.com/10-medicinal-ginger-health-benefits/
  12. https://draxe.com/ginger-root-benefits/
  13. https://draxe.com/ginger-tea-benefits/
  14. https://academic.oup.com/painmedicine/article/12/12/1808/1846834
  15. https://www.dentalcare.com/en-us/professional-education/ce-courses/ce549/ginger
  16. http://www.scopemed.org/?mno=2048
  17. http://www.orientjchem.org/vol32no2/antibacterial-effect-of-ginger-zingiber-officinale-roscoe-and-bioactive-chemical-analysis-using-gas-chromatography-mass-spectrum-2/
  18. http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0141119
  19. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10412905.2004.9698692
  20. https://www.amherst.edu/academiclife/departments/biology/facilities/confocal_microscope/baird/node/118798
  21. https://nutritionandmetabolism.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1743-7075-8-40
  22. http://www.ijddr.in/drug-development/anti-bacterial-and-anti-inflammatory-efficacy-of-zingiber-officinale-and-decalepis-hamiltonii–in-vitro-study.php?aid=6861
  23. https://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ingredient/707084/ZINGIBER_OFFICINALE_%28GINGER%29_ROOT_OIL/#.WsnsBojwaUk
  24. http://www.scielo.br/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1807-59322008000600017
  25. https://www.medicinenet.com/ginger_zingiber_officinale-oral/article.htm
  26. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25719344
  27. https://www.hindawi.com/journals/arthritis/2014/159089/
  28. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1110116413000902
  29. https://academic.oup.com/rheumatology/article/42/5/652/1784589
  30. https://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Zingiber+officinale
  31. http://eol.org/pages/987032/overview
  32. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2213434416300676
  33. http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?fr=182.20
  34. https://books.google.ca/books?id=KeGzp-YXrPYC&pg=PA3591
  35. https://books.google.com/?id=0HzoNfy-__EC&dq=ginger+philippines+sore+throat

Calendula

Yellow Calendula

True Marigold – Calendula officinalis

Common Names

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Aklelmulk, Atunjaq, Calendula, Chin Chan Hua, Garden Marigold, Gold Bloom, Holligold, Kamisha Bahar, Maravilla, Marigold, Marybud, Mercadela, Oqhuwan, Poet’s marigold, Pot Marigold, Qaraqus, Tibbi Nergis, To-Kinsen-Ka, Tuingoudsbloem, Virreina

Chemistry

The plant contains several oleanolic acid glycosides. Flavonol and triterpene glycosides have been isolated from C. officinalis via high pressure chromatography. Calendulin (also known as bassorin) has been identified in the plant as have sterols and fatty acids such as calendic acid. Additionally, the plant contains triterpenoid in free and ester forms, tocopherols, mucilage, and a volatile oil. Enzymatic activity of calendula extracts has been described. The carotenoid pigments have been used as coloring agents in cosmetics and the volatile oil has been used in perfumes.

The major chemical constituents of Calendula oil are a-cadinol, limonene, a-cadinene, p-cymene, 1, 8-cineol along with other flavonoids, terpenoids, coumarins, flavonol glycosides, carotenoids, sesquiterpene glucoside, amino acids, triterpene oligoglycosides, saponins, and oleanane-type triterpene glycosides.

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Properties

Anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-infective, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-phlogistic, anti-septic, anti-spasmodic, anti-viral, aperient, astringent, cholagogue, detoxifier, diaphoretic, emmenagogue, estrogenic, hemostatic, immunostimulant, vulnerary.

Indicated for

Acne, athlete’s foot, blepharitis, candida, cold sores, conjunctivitis, coughs, cramps, eczema, fungal infections, gastritis, good digestion, hemorrhoids, HIV, menopausal symptoms, menstrual cramps, minor burns, phthiriasis (dry), relieving colitis, ringworm, sore throats, skin ulcerations, snake bites, sprains, sunburns, varicose veins, viral infections, warts, wounds.

Calendula has been used medicinally for centuries. Traditionally, it has been used to treat conjunctivitis, blepharitis, eczema, gastritis, minor burns including sunburns, warts, and minor injuries such as sprains and wounds. It has also been used to treat cramps, coughs, and snake bites. Calendula has a high content of flavonoids, chemicals that act as anti-oxidants in the body. Anti-oxidants are thought to protect body cells from damage caused by a chemical process called oxidation. Oxidation produces oxygen free radicals, natural chemicals that may suppress immune function.

Calendula flower is used to prevent muscle spasms, start menstrual periods, and reduce fever. It is also used for treating sore throat and mouth, menstrual cramps, cancer, and stomach and duodenal ulcers.

Calendula is applied to the skin to reduce pain and swelling (inflammation) and to treat poorly healing wounds and leg ulcers. It is also applied to the skin (used topically) for nosebleeds, varicose veins, hemorrhoids, inflammation of the rectum (proctitis), and inflammation of the lining of the eyelid (conjunctivitis).

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Don’t confuse calendula with ornamental marigolds of the Tagets genus, which are commonly grown in vegetable gardens.

The plant has been grown in European gardens since the 12th century, and its folkloric uses are almost as old. Tinctures and extracts of the florets were used topically to promote wound healing and to reduce inflammation; systemically, they have been used to reduce fever, control dysmenorrhea, and treat cancer. The plant is listed in the German Commission E Monographs for wound healing and anti-inflammatory actions.

The dried petals have been used like saffron as a seasoning and have been used to adulterate saffron. The pungent odor of the Calendula has been used as an effective pesticide. Calendula flowers are often interspersed among vegetable plants to repel insects.

Calendula infusion

Medicinal Uses and Indications

Today, calendula is not usually taken by mouth. The exception is when it is used in extremely small amounts in homeopathic preparations. Calendula is usually applied topically, to the skin.

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Burns, cuts, and bruises: Calendula tinctures, ointments, and washes are often applied to the skin to help burns, bruises, and cuts heal faster, and to fight the minor infections they cause. Calendula cream is also used to treat hemorrhoids. Animal studies show that calendula helps wounds heal faster, maybe by increasing blood flow to the wounded area and by helping the body make new tissue. There are no scientific studies looking at whether calendula works in humans, but using it on your skin is considered safe. Professional homeopaths often recommend using ointments with calendula to heal first-degree burns and sunburns.

Dermatitis: Early evidence suggests that calendula may help prevent dermatitis, skin inflammation, in people with breast cancer who are undergoing radiation therapy, however, other studies show no effect. Calendula is also a safe and effective remedy for diaper rash.

Ear infection (otitis media): Ear drops containing calendula are sometimes used to treat ear infections in children. A few scientific studies have found no side effects. More research is needed to determine whether calendula helps treat ear infections.

Oral Health: There are also certain antibacterial properties of calendula that have made it very popular in recent years. You will often find it on the ingredients list of various herbal health and hygiene products, including toothpastes, mouthwashes, soaps, and shampoos. In terms of oral health, toothpastes and mouthwashes that contain calendula are very effective in killing bacteria that cause everything from gingivitis to cavities.

Skin Care: Aside from stimulating healing, calendula oil can significantly boost the appearance of your skin. It can affect blood flow to the skin cells, provide antioxidant protection that reduces the appearance of wrinkles and ages spots, and even the visibility of scars. If you want smooth, even-toned skin that glows with youthful vitality, consider adding some organic products that contain calendula or consume calendula in another form, such as tea.

Vision Health: Research has shown that calendula contains certain antioxidant compounds that directly impact your vision. Beta-carotene is essential for the health and functioning of your eyes, and it is a wonderful source of this compound. You can prevent macular degeneration and the development of cataracts in this way.

Reduced Inflammation: Regardless of where you inflammation is occurring, calendula can significantly reduce the discomfort. If you are suffering from a cough or congestion, calendula tea can be a wonderful remedy. If your joints are hurting from arthritis or gout, add some calendula oil to a skin balm and enjoy a rapid reduction in pain. Finally, if your stomach is upset, calendula can help normalize your gastrointestinal system and eliminate any inflammation that may be causing discomfort.

Cancer Prevention: Calendula oil has certain anti-tumor properties that make it very valuable in new cancer research exploring natural solutions to this global epidemic. Cancer remains one of the great mysteries of our species in terms of collective health, and compounds like those found in calendula offer an interesting new angle on this critical issue.

Reduced Cramping: There are also some anti-spasmodic properties of calendula that are also taken advantage of by many people. If you suffer from a nervous system disorder, have painful cramping in relation to menstruation, or some other type of spasmodic condition, adding calendula to your diet may be a wise choice.

Available Forms

Fresh or dried calendula petals are available in tinctures, liquid extracts, infusions, ointments, and creams.

Calendula products should always be protected from light and moisture, and should not be used after 3 years of storage.

Calendula petals

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Don’t take calendula by mouth if you are pregnant. It is LIKELY UNSAFE. There is a concern that it might cause a miscarriage. It’s best to avoid topical use as well until more is known.

Allergy to ragweed and related plants: Calendula may cause an allergic reaction in people who are sensitive to the Asteraceae/Compositae family. Members of this family include ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many others. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking calendula.

Surgery: Calendula might cause too much drowsiness if combined with medications used during and after surgery. Stop taking calendula at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

References

  1. http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-marigold.html
  2. http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-235-calendula.aspx?activeingredientid=235&activeingredientname=calendula
  3. https://chestnutherbs.com/calendula-sunshine-incarnate-an-edible-and-medicinal-flower/
  4. http://www.umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/calendula
  5. https://draxe.com/calendula/
  6. https://www.herbal-supplement-resource.com/calendula-herbs.html
  7. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/other/calendula.html
  8. http://www.ajol.info/index.php/tjpr/article/view/48090
  9. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/J157v06n03_08
  10. http://europepmc.org/abstract/med/25941793
  11. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0002817714640265
  12. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378874109007740
  13. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1744388112000096
  14. http://europepmc.org/abstract/med/7809203
  15. http://bmccancer.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2407-6-119
  16. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ptr.1980/abstract
  17. http://www.woundsresearch.com/article/9064
  18. https://www.drugs.com/npp/calendula.html
  19. https://theherbalacademy.com/calendula-uses-our-14-favorite-recipes-and-remedies/
  20. Akhtar N, Zaman SU, Khan BA, Amir MN, Ebrahimzadeh MA. Calendula extract: effects on mechanical parameters of human skin. Acta Pol Pharm. 2011;68(5):693-701.
  21. Alnuqaydan AM, Lenehan CE, Hughes RR, Sanderson BJ. Extracts from Calendula officinalis offer in vitro protection agains H2O2 induced oxidative stress cell killing of human skin cells. Phytother Res. 2015;29(1):120-4.
  22. Barajas-Farias LM et al. A dual and opposite effect of Calendula officinalis flower extract: chemoprotector and promoter in rat hepatocarcinogenesis model. PLanta Med. 2006;72(3):217-21.
  23. Basch E, Bent S, Foppa I, et al. Marigold (Calendula officinalis):An evidence-based systematic review by the Natural Standard Research Collaboration. J Herb Pharmacother. 2006;6(3-4):135-59.
  24. Duran V, Matic M, Jovanovc M, et al. Results of the clinical examination of an ointment with marigold (Calendula officinalis) extract in the treatment of venous leg ulcers. Int J Tissue React. 2005;27(3):101-6.
  25. Fronza M, Heinzmann B, Hamburger M, Laufer S, Merfort I. Determination of the wound healing effect of Calendula extracts using the scratch assay with 3T3 fibroblasts. J Ethnopharmacol. 2009 Dec 10;126(3):463-7.
  26. Hematology/Oncology Clinics of North America. Dietary supplement use in cancer care: Help or harm. Hematology/Oncology Clinics of North America. 2008;22(4).
  27. Jimenez-Medina E, Garcia-Lora A, Paco L, Algarra I, Collado A, Garrido F. A new extract of the plant Calendula officinalis produces a dual in vitro effect: cytotoxic anti-tumor activity and lymphocyte activation. BMC Cancer. 2006;6:119.
  28. Kassab S, Cummings M, Berkovitz S, van Haselen R, Fisher P. Homeopathic medicines for adverse effects of cancer treatments. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2009 Apr 15;(2):CD004845. Review.
  29. McQuestion M. Evidence-based skin care management in radiation therapy: clinical update. Semin Oncol Nurs. 2011;27(2):e1-17.
  30. Panahi Y, Sharif MR, Sharif A, et al. A randomized comparative trial on the therapeutic efficacy of topical aloe vera and Calendula officinalis on diaper dermatitis in children. Scientific World Journal. 2012;2012:810234.
  31. Pommier P, Gomez F, Sunyach MP, D’Hombres A, Carrie C, Montbarbon X. Phase III randomized trial of Calendula officinalis compared with trolamine for the prevention of acute dermatitis during irradiation for breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2004 Apr 15;22(8):1447-53.
  32. Saini P, Al-Shibani N, Sun J, et al. Effects of Calendula officinalis on human gingival fibroblasts. Homeopathy. 2012;101(2):92-8.
  33. Sarrell EM, Cohen HA, Kahan E. Naturopathic treatment for ear pain in children. Pediatrics. 2003 May;111(5 Pt 1):e574-9.
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  35. Sharp L, Finnila K, Hohansson H, Abrahamsson M, Hatschek T, Bergenmar M. No differences between Calendula cream and aqueous cream in the prevention of acute radiation skin reactions–results from a randomised blinded trial. Eur J Oncol Nurs. 2013; 17(4):429-35.
  36. Ullman D. The Consumer’s Guide to Homeopathy. New York, NY: Penguin Putnam; 1995:254-255;334.