Hyssop

By H. Zell – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10415334

Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis)

AROMA: Sweet, rich herbaceous, camphoraceous

BLENDS WELL WITH: Angelica, Bay, clary sage, geranium, grapefruit, lavandin, lavender, lemon, mandarin, Melissa, myrtle, orange, rosemary, sage, tangerine

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HERBAL MISCELLANY: It is one of the bitter herbs mentioned in the Old Testament, employed to purify the temples. Romans used hyssop to protect themselves against the plague, and to clean the houses of the sick. The chief constituents of Hyssop essential oil are Alpha Pinene, Camphene, Beta-Pinene, Sabinene, Myrcene, Limonene, Pinocamphone, Iso-Pinocamphene, Gamma Terpineol, Cineole, and Thujone.

You will find Hyssop in Mother Jai’s Bath & Body Oils and Aroma Sprays.

What Is Hyssop Oil: The perennial plant hyssop is native to the Mediterranean region and was considered a holy plant in biblical times. During the time of the Romans, this herb was used against the plague, as a disinfectant and for treatment of minor infections. In some parts of the world, it had a spiritual function, and was believed to purify and “forgive sins.” Christianity held hyssop in high regard — the herb was cited as a symbol of baptism and reconciliation. In other religions, it is associated with purification.

The plant grows up to 60 centimeters or 2 feet high, and has a “hairy” stem with small pointy leaves and blue, purple or white flowers. Today, hyssop is cultivated in various parts of France for its essential oils. It is deemed one of the strongest antiviral essential oils out there because it contains nearly every type of chemical compound found in essential oils. However, the oil is still mild and gentle.

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How Does Hyssop Oil Work?

The essential oil of the hyssop plant can be used in several ways. It can be applied topically on your skin or inhaled through a diffuser or vaporizer. Below are some ways to enjoy the benefits of this essential oil:

  • Help relieve fatigue, stress and even any type of body pain — Add two drops of hyssop oil to your bath water, preferably warm. Taking a bath in hyssop oil infused water may also contribute to a peaceful night’s rest.
  • Possibly address menstrual discomfort or menopausal symptoms — Mix three drops of hyssop oil with a carrier oil and use the mixture as a massage oil on your abdomen.
  • Help reduce pain as massage oil — Similar to the previous suggestion, use three drops of this oil blended with a carrier oil and massage on painful muscles. Rubbing the mixture on your stomach may also relieve gastrointestinal discomfort caused by indigestion and gas.
  • Aid in lowering fever — Massaging two drops of this herbal oil with 1 milliliter of coconut oil on the soles of your feet may help reduce fever.
  • Help clear clogged respiratory tracts — When inhaled, hyssop oil can ease nasal congestion, breathing difficulties, colds and cough. Use two drops in steam inhalation. You may also apply two drops of hyssop oil mixed with vapor rub onto your chest to induce the oil’s expectorant effect.
  • Help heal and prevent scars — Add two drops of hyssop oil to your lotion or cream and apply topically.

BENEFITS

The health benefits of Hyssop Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties as an astringent, stimulant, anti-Spasmodic, anti-rheumatic, antiseptic, carminative, cicatrisant, digestive, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, hypertensive, nervine, sudorific, tonic, febrifuge, vermifuge, and vulnerary substance.

Astringent: The function of an astringent is to contract or cause something to shrink. Hyssop essential oil, being an astringent, makes the gums, muscles and limbs, abdomen, intestines, skin, tissues and blood vessels to contract. This can help you in many ways. This can prevent muscles and skin from sagging down due to age, loosening or loss of teeth, wrinkles, and hemorrhaging, all by quickly contracting the blood vessels.

Antispasmodic: Being an antispasmodic, Hyssop essential oil gives relief in spasms of the respiratory system, thereby curing spasmodic coughs. It also cures spasms of the nervous system in order to cure convulsions and related problems, as well as reducing muscular spasms, which cures cramps, and spasms of the intestines, giving relief from acute abdominal pain. It is also beneficial in curing spasmodic cholera.

Coughing is a common reaction of the respiratory system trying to expel harmful microbes, dust or irritants, so hyssop’s antispasmodic and antiseptic properties make it a great natural treatment for coughs and other respiratory conditions. Hyssop can also work as a remedy for sore throats, making it a great tool for people who use their voices throughout the day, like teachers, singers and lecturers. The best way to soothe the throat and respiratory system is to drink hyssop tea or add a few drops of oil to your throat and chest.

Almost everybody has likely experienced discomfort in his or her muscles at some point. Because almost every part of the body has muscle tissue, this type of pain can be felt practically anywhere. A study done at the Department of Pharmacology of Natural Substances and General Physiology in Italy found that hyssop oil had muscle-relaxing activity when it was tested on guinea pig and rabbit intestines. The hyssop oil treatment inhibited contractions and reduced the amplitude of spontaneous movements. Hyssop oil’s antispasmodic properties can help treat muscle aches, cramps and charley horses naturally.

Antirheumatic: Since Hyssop oil improves and promotes circulation, it helps cure diseases associated with poor circulation, such as rheumatism, arthritis, gout, and swelling.

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An increase in blood flow or circulation in the body benefits the heart and the body’s muscles and arteries. Hyssop improves and promotes circulation because of its anti-rheumatic properties. By increasing circulation, hyssop can work as a natural remedy for gout, rheumatism, arthritis and swelling. Your heart rate lowers when your blood circulates properly, and then your heart muscles relax and your blood pressure flows evenly throughout the body, affecting every organ.

So many people are looking for natural arthritis treatments because it can be a crippling condition. Osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis, occurs when cartilage between joints wears down, causing inflammation and pain. By increasing circulation, hyssop oil and tea inhibit swelling and inflammation, allowing the blood to flow through the body and relieve the pressure that builds up because of clogged arteries.

Because of its ability to improve circulation, hyssop oil is also a home remedy and treatment for hemorrhoids, which are experienced by 75 percent of Americans at some point in their lives. Hemorrhoids are caused by an increase in pressure on the veins of the anus and rectum. The pressure on the veins causes swelling, pain and bleeding.

Antiseptic: Whenever we are wounded or get a cut or abrasion, our first worry is that the wound might become septic. If it is an iron object, then there remains a chance of it becoming infected by tetanus. Hyssop oil, applied on wounds, might help us avoid both of the above situations. Since it is an antiseptic substance, it prevents infections from developing into wounds.

Hyssop prevents infections from developing in wounds and cuts. Because of its antiseptic properties, when it’s applied to an opening of the skin, it fights infection and kills bacteria. Hyssop also helps in healing deep cuts, scars, insect bites and even can be one of the great home remedies for acne.

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A study done at the Department of Virology, Hygiene Institute in Germany tested hyssop oil’s ability to fight genital herpes by testing plaque reduction. Genital herpes is a chronic, persistent infection that is spread efficiently and silently as a sexually transmitted disease. The study found that hyssop oil lowered plaque formation by more than 90 percent, proving that the oil interacted with the virus and serves as a therapeutic application for the treatment of herpes.

Cicatrisant: Deep cuts will heal quicker and the scar marks left by them will disappear sooner if Hyssop oil is applied to them. It is equally beneficial to fade away the after spots of boils, pox, infections, and insect bites.

Hyssop oil can work as a natural treatment for acne. Because hyssop oil is antiseptic, it can kill bacteria on the skin and fight infections. Research also demonstrates that hyssop essential oil exhibits bacteriostatic activity, which means it can stop bacteria from reproducing.

Digestive: This oil facilitates digestion. Being a stimulant, it stimulates the secretion of gastric juices like acids, enzymes, and bile into the stomach, which speeds up the decomposition of complex proteins, carbohydrates, and other nutrients. It also facilitates the passage of these foods through the intestines by stimulating peristaltic motion, thereby optimizing the absorption of these nutrients by intestinal villi.

Hyssop oil is a stimulant, so it increases the production of secretions, like bile, digestive enzymes and acid. These gastric juices are necessary in order to break down food as it makes its way to the stomach. We have digestive juices that contain enzymes in order to speed up the chemical reactions in the body and break down food into nutrients.

By facilitating digestion, hyssop oil helps with the decomposition of complex proteins, carbohydrates and nutrients. Because the digestive system interacts with all other body systems, including the nervous, endocrine and immune systems, the role that hyssop plays as a stimulant is very beneficial. Hyssop oil can also be helpful with intestinal gas, indigestion and loss of appetite.

Diuretic: Hyssop essential oil can also speed up detoxification of your body, removal of excess water and sodium, loss of fats and reduction in blood pressure just by promoting a single thing – urination. It increases the frequency of urination and the quantity of urine as well. This has other benefits too. Hyssop essential oil keeps your heart healthy, aids digestion, and also reduces the formation of gas.

Emmenagogue: This property of Hyssop essential oil can help women with irregular, obstructed, painful, or exhausting menstruation. This oil opens up menses, makes it regular and also helps overcome symptoms related with menses like nausea, headache, pain in lower abdomen, fatigue, loss of appetite, and mood swings.

Expectorant: This is yet another beneficial property of Hyssop essential oil. It is an expectorant. This is a good remedy to loosen phlegm that has been tightly deposited in the respiratory tracts. This keeps the respiratory system warm and stops any further deposition of phlegm in it. Moreover, it helps to cure the infections due to the common cold.

Carminative: This oil, having carminative properties, helps clear gases from the intestines and relieves you of problems like uneasiness, heaviness, indigestion, stomach aches, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, and even heart troubles. Furthermore, Hyssop oil does not allow the formation of gas. It actually stimulates the downward passage of gas for safe expulsion from the body.

Febrifuge: When fever is due to infections, it helps reduce it by fighting infections. When fever is due to an accumulation of toxins in the body, this oil reduces it by promoting the removal of toxins from the body through urination. Hyssop oil also brings about sweating, which helps bring down a person’s temperature in cases of very high fever.

Hypertensive: Now, this property may not be welcome for normal or hypertensive people, but it is beneficial for hypotensive people (people who suffer from low blood pressure). This essential oil can raise blood pressure and help get rid of problems associated with low blood pressure, such as headaches, a tendency of vomiting, fatigue, and swelling in the limbs.

Nervine: Being a Nervine means serving as a tonic for the nervous system. This keeps the nervous system healthy and in good, working order, and helps to avoid nervous disorders. It is effective in cases of vertigo, nervousness, and convulsions as well. Hyssop essential oil is a good nervine and tones up the entire nervous system.

Stimulant: Hyssop oil stimulates all the systems running inside the body. It stimulates the nervous, circulatory, digestive, endocrine, neural, and excretory systems. Thus, it stimulates the body’s metabolism as a whole and helps in optimal consumption and absorption of the nutrients. It also stimulates and activates the immune system and protects your body from infections and diseases.

Sudorific: If someone is suffering from very limited perspiration, obstructed perspiration, or no perspiration at all (something teenagers have always wanted), he or she could be in big trouble. It simply means that toxic elements, excess water, and sodium is accumulating in your body, which is paving the way for bigger or chronic trouble. So, get going and use Hyssop essential oil. Being a sudorific, it helps bring about a lot of perspiration and frees your body of toxins, water, and extra salts. It also can help you to slim down.

Vermifuge: It kills worms, intestinal and otherwise while helping those children enjoy a better life who were suffering from obstructed growth due to these worms. Nutrients can actually be put to good use, and children can begin to develop properly.

Hyssop has the ability to fight parasites, which are organisms that feed off the nutrients of other organisms. Some examples of parasites include tapeworm, fleas, hookworms and flukes. Because it’s a vermifuge, hyssop oil expels parasitic works, especially in the intestines. When a parasite lives in and feed on its host, it disrupts nutrient absorption and causes weakness and disease. If the parasite is living in the intestines, it disrupts the digestive and immune systems.

Therefore, hyssop can be a key part of a parasite cleanse, as hyssop helps many systems in the body and ensures that your needed nutrients aren’t taken by these dangerous organisms.

Vulnerary: Hyssop essential oil protects wounds from infections and helps them heal quicker.

Other Benefits: It is very effective against diseases resulting from viral infections such as coughs, colds, flu, mumps, tonsillitis, and sore throat, as well as on bronchitis, asthma, eczema, dermatitis, and inflammation.

PRECAUTIONS: Oil Specific: Avoid in epilepsy, and while pregnant. Not for internal use.

General: As with all essential oils, never use them undiluted, in eyes or mucus membranes. Do not take internally unless working with a qualified and expert practitioner. Keep away from children. If applying an essential oil to your skin always perform a small patch test to an insensitive part of the body (after you have properly diluted the oil in an appropriate carrier.

How to Use Hyssop

Hyssop is most commonly used to fight throat and respiratory infections, fatigue, muscle aches, and arthritis. It’s traditionally used in teas, but it’s equally effective as a capsule, oil or extract. Here are some common hyssop uses:

  • For aromatherapy, diffuse or inhale 3–5 drops of hyssop oil.
  • When used topically to treat skin irritations, burns, bruising and frostbite, dilute 2–3 drops of hyssop with equal parts of a carrier oil (like coconut or jojoba oil) before applying to skin.
  • To heal scars and wounds, add 2–3 drops of hyssop oil with equal parts coconut or jojoba oil and apply the mixture to the specific area twice daily.
  • Add 3–5 drops of hyssop oil to warm bath water to stimulate sweating and lower body temperature.
  • To reduce fever, massage two drops of hyssop oil and a teaspoon of coconut oil into your feet.
  • To clear clogged respiratory system, add 2–3 drops of hyssop oil to my Homemade Vapor Rub recipe.
  • To treat a cough, add one drop of hyssop oil to my Homemade Cough Syrup.
  • As a fragrance, hyssop oil can be added to soaps, lotions and body washes.

Can you eat hyssop? The fresh herb is commonly used in cooking, but the flavor is very strong, so it’s often steamed when making broths or soups. It can be added to salads in small amounts. The leaves have a lightly bitter taste due to its tannins and an intense minty aroma.

  • For internal use, add 1–2 drops of hyssop to water and mix it with a smoothie. Only use very high-quality oil brands when used for consumption.
  • Hyssop flower tops and leaves are steeped in water to make infusions and medicinal tea.
  • The plant is commonly used by beekeepers to produce a rich and aromatic honey.
  • The hyssop herb is used to flavor liqueur and is part of the official formulation of Chartreuse.
  • To kill bacteria in the mouth, gargle 1–2 drops of hyssop mixed with water.
  • To increase blood circulation and repair damaged heart cells, add 1–2 drops of hyssop oil, or dried hyssop leaves, to my Hot Heart Health Juice.
  • Hyssop essential oil blends well with other essential oils such as geranium, lemon, clary sage, grapefruit, lavender, rosemary and orange.

Hyssop Tea Recipe: To make your own hyssop tea, follow these directions.

  • Start by boiling two cups of water.
  • Add two tablespoons of fresh hyssop leaves to the water
  • Let it steep for 30 minutes.
  • You can make a bigger batch of tea and reheat it when needed.

Hyssop tea is a great way to relieve respiratory infections, the common cold and sore throat. It also helps regulate your digestive system and supports the immune system. You can even dab hyssop tea on your wounds, cuts and bruises to speed up the recovery process and minimize the look of dark spots and scars.

How to Make a Hyssop Oil Infusion

What You’ll Need:

  • Fresh hyssop
  • Knife
  • Ceramic or enamel stock pot with lid
  • Clean brick or canning rack
  • Ceramic bowl or heatproof glass
  • Distilled water
  • Ice cubes
  • Jar
  • Small glass bottle or vial

Procedure:

  • Gather a basketful of flowers and leaves from hyssop plants early in the morning.
  • Rinse and dry the hyssop flowers and leaves, then chop them. Crush these to slightly release their volatile oils.
  • Put a clean brick or canning rack at the bottom of your stock pot.
  • Place a heat-proof bowl on top of the brick or rack. This will then be the “receiver” of the condensed hyssop vapor.
  • Surround the bowl inside with the chopped hyssop. It should be halfway up the side of the bowl.
  • Pour enough hot distilled water over the chopped hyssop until it is immersed in water, but do not spill water into the bowl.
  • Turn the burner to high until the water boils, then lower to a simmer.
  • Invert the lid of the stockpot and use it to cover the pot. The upside down handle will act as a “drip mechanism” from which the condensed vapor can drip into the bowl.
  • Place several ice cubes on the outside of the inverted lid, along the center depression. As older ones melt, continue adding fresh cubes.
  • After three to four hours, turn off the heat and remove the interior bowl, which is filled with the condensed drops from the vaporized hyssop water. The product is the hyssop hydrosol, or herbal water.
  • Extract the essential oil by pouring the hydrosol into a jar and placing it in the freezer. The liquid portion of the herbal water will freeze, while the volatile oil will stay as it is.
  • Pour the essential oil into a small bottle or vial. Seal it and store in a dark, cool place.

Magical/Energetic Uses: An excellent plant for purification and protection, hyssop is invaluable in its ability to dispel negativity.  Hang a bouquet at the front door of your home to deflect any unwanted energy from entering. It can also be dried and displayed anywhere you wish to create extra protection, such as in a car or bedroom.

On a waning or dark moon, burn it in ritual to assist in cutting energetic cords, banishing attachments or releasing patterns that no longer serve you.  It is useful to combine hyssop with other cleansing herbs such as sage and cedar to smudge and clear unwanted energies throughout your home.

Planted in your garden, hyssop can help create protection and a positive energetic flow throughout your yard.  This in turn, can elevate the vibrational frequency around your home and garden area and act as a beacon attracting nature fairies and elementals to your space.

References:

  1. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/essential-oils/health-benefits-of-hyssop-essential-oil.html
  2. https://www.mountainroseherbs.com/products/hyssop-essential-oil/profile?gclid=CjwKCAjw4avaBRBPEiwA_ZetYuadUw5f48zJVWXmbdeITfcAWlfc3xRIcsmCuN0nU6B2wfydm7NgHBoCv2sQAvD_BwE
  3. https://draxe.com/hyssop/
  4. https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/hyssop-oil.aspx
  5. https://drericz.com/hyssop-oil-uses/
  6. https://organicdailypost.com/19-incredible-uses-hyssop-essential-oil/
  7. http://www.thewayofthewitch.com/may-hyssop.html

Geranium

Multicolor Geraniums

Rose Geranium flower & oil (Pelargonium graveolens)

Pelargonium graveolens, Rose Geranium, is an uncommon Pelargonium species native to the Cape Provinces and the Northern Provinces of South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. It is in the subgenus Pelargonium along with Pelargonium crispum, Pelargonium tomentosum and Pelargonium capitatum.

You will find Geranium essential oil in Mother Jai’s Aroma Sprays, Toners, & Bath Oils.

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There are many cultivars of P. graveolens and they have a wide variety of scents, including rose, citrus, mint and cinnamon as well as various fruits. Cultivars and hybrids include:

  • P. ‘Graveolens’ (or Pelargonium graveolens hort.) – A rose-scented cultivar of P. graveolens. Possibly a hybrid between P. graveolens and P. radens or P. capitatum. This cultivar is often incorrectly labeled as Pelargonium graveolens (the species). The main difference between the species and this cultivar is the dissection of the leaf. The species had about 5 lobes but the cultivar has about 10.
  • P. ‘Citrosum’ – A lemony, citronella-scented cultivar of P. graveolens, similar to P. ‘Graveolens’. It is meant to repel mosquitos and rumour has it that it was made by genetically bonding genes from the citronella grass but this is highly unlikely.
  • P. ‘Cinnamon Rose’ – A cinnamon-scented variety of P. graveolens.
  • P. ‘Dr Westerlund’ – A lemony rose-scented cultivar of P. graveolens, similar to P. ‘Graveolens’.[citation needed]
  • P. ‘Graveolens Bontrosai’ – A genetically challenged form of P. graveolens. The leaves are smaller and curl back on themselves and the flowers often don’t open fully. Known as P. ‘Colocho’ in the US.
  • P. ‘Grey Lady Plymouth’ – A lemony rose-scented cultivar of P. graveolens. Similar to P. ‘Lady Plymouth’. The leaves are grey – green in colour and beautifully contrast of scented pelargonium varieties.
  • P. ‘Lady Plymouth’ – A minty lemony rose-scented cultivar of P. graveolens. A very popular variety with a definite mint scent. Possibly a P. radens hybrid.
  • P. ‘Lara Starshine’ – A lemony rose-scented cultivar of P. graveolens, similar to P. ‘Graveolens’ but with more lemony scented leaves and reddish pink flowers. Bred by Australian Plantsman Cliff Blackman.
  • P. ‘Lucaeflora’ – A rose-scented variety of P. graveolens, much more similar to the species that most other cultivars and varieties of P. graveolens.
  • P. × melissinum – The lemon balm pelargonium (lemon balm – Melissa officinalis). This is a hybrid between P. crispum and P. graveolens.
  • P. ‘Mint Rose’ – A minty rose-scented cultivar of P. graveolens. Similar to P. ‘Lady Plymouth’ but without the variegation of the leaves and lemony undertones.
  • P. ‘Secret Love’ – An unusual eucalyptus-scented variety of P. graveolens with pretty pale pink flowers.
  • P. ‘Van Leeni’ – A lemony rose-scented cultivar of P. graveolens, similar to P. ‘Graveolens’ and P. ‘Dr Westerland’.
Rose Geranium

Composition of Geranium Oil

Geranium oil contains about 67 compounds. The main components of geranium oil are citronellol (26.7 percent) and geraniol (13.4 percent). Other major constituents include:

  • Nerol (8.7 percent)
  • Citronellyl formate (7.1 percent)
  • Isomenthone (6.3 percent)
  • Linalool (5.2 percent)
https://www.planttherapy.com/geranium-egyptian-organic-essential-oil?v=1595

Functions

The most interesting health benefits of geranium include its ability to lower stress levels, reduce inflammation, relieve menstrual pain, strengthen the immune system, ease digestion and improve kidney, skin and hair health. It has antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties which help heal wounds faster.

Pelargonium graveolens is a geranium extract used in cosmetics and personal care products as a fragrance ingredient. It is cultivated in large numbers in South Africa, and known for its rose-like scent, although it is also used for other smells it imparts, including citrus, mint, coconut and nutmeg, as well as various fruits. It is sometimes known as rose geranium, old fashion rose geranium, and rose-scent geranium, according to Wikipedia. It is considered a less expensive alternative to other rose oils, and is often used in aromatherapy formulas as well.

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Pelargonium graveolens has other skin care properties as well and is known to create a balance between oily and dry skin by balancing the production of sebum; this balance assists in boosting and improving the elasticity of the skin. It also stimulates the lymphatic system, releasing excess water that may be retained in the tissue. This may not only prevent cellulite but can also relieve swelling. Pelargonium graveolens also has therapeutic abilities that can calm irritated skin, clear acne, and heal bruises, burns, cuts and eczema, due to its astringent, antiseptic, tonic, antibiotic and anti-infectious properties.

Wild Geranium – ‘Cranesbill’

Uses of Geranium Oil

In aromatherapy, geranium oil is used to help treat acne, sore throats, anxiety, depression and insomnia. It is popular among women due to its rosy smell and its beneficial effect on menstruation and menopause.4 The essential oil can also aid in uplifting mood, lessening fatigue and promoting emotional wellness.

Geranium oil also functions to assist in pain reduction and inflammation. Its antiseptic properties can help speed up the healing of wounds and treat a variety of skin problems, such as burns, frostbite, fungal infections, athlete’s foot and eczema. Hemorrhoids can also be potentially treated with the use of geranium oil.

Frequent travelers can use geranium oil as a natural insect repellent. Topical application can also help heal insect bites and stop itching. It may also be used as a massage oil to help relieve aching muscles and stress. Other uses of geranium oil include:

  • Food — Geranium oil can be added to baked goods, frozen dairy, non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages and candies.
  • Perfumery — Geranium oil has been used to create an artificial rose scent in fragrances and cosmetics.
Wild Geranium – ‘Cranesbill’

Benefits of Geranium Oil (OrganicFacts.net & Mercola.com)

Geranium essential oil provides numerous health benefits due its uses as an astringent, hemostatic, cicatrisant, diuretic and many others. Below are just some of the ways this essential oil serves both your physical and emotional health:

  • It causes your gums, muscles, intestines, skin, blood vessels and tissues to contract due to its astringent properties. It assists in preventing skin problems like sagging and wrinkling and helps give your muscles a toned appearance.
  • It contains antibacterial, antifungal and antioxidant properties. It can aid in inhibiting the bacterial strains Brevibacterium linens and Yersinia enterolitica, as well as the fungal species Aspergillus niger. It can also help prevent bacterial infections.
  • It can help eliminate the appearance of scars and dark spots by helping improve blood circulation just below the surface of the skin and helping promote an equal distribution of melanin.
  • It can help speed up the healing of wounds by triggering blood clotting. This also helps in stopping toxins from reaching your bloodstream through open wounds.
  • It assists in detoxification by increasing the rate of urination. This process of elimination does not only remove toxins from your body, but also aids in your digestive function and helps inhibit the excess gas in your intestines.
  • It can serve as a deodorant due to its fragrant scent. It can also help prevent body odor due to its antibacterial action.
  • The impact of geranium on the nervous system is well known and the plant has been used in this way for generations. If you brew the leaves of its plant, you can produce a tasty tea that has soothing properties, derived from its organic compounds that positively impact the endocrine system and help to balance hormones that cause stress and anxiety. A quick cup of tea when you’re stressed can quickly relieve unpleasant moods and a cluttered mind.
  • Although quite similar to its anti-inflammatory properties, the analgesic ability of geranium has made it a popular traditional remedy for headaches and other injuries. If you suffer from chronic pain or migraines, research has shown that its tea can release endorphins and relieve pain quite rapidly. This effect is relatively mild, and shouldn’t be relied on for permanent pain relief.
  • Geranium relieves symptoms of bronchitis, sinusitis, and nose infections because it is a powerful antiviral.
  • Geranium, being a styptic, has the ability to stop hemorrhage as it slows down blood flow by contracting the arteries and veins. It also has hemostatic properties which cause the blood to clot. This helps heal wounds faster.
  • If you’re suffering from cramping, bloating, or a generally upset stomach, drinking a cup of geranium tea can be one of the easiest and most painless remedies. The beneficial organic compounds can quickly soothe inflammation and eliminate bacteria that may be causing the discomfort, and get your gastrointestinal system back to normal!
  • Geranium is excellent for treating a range of women’s health issues from hot flashes and distress during menopause and menstrual cramps. It works two-fold, as a tonic and an antidepressant. It has been traditionally used to stabilize hormonal levels during menopause through its action on the adrenal cortex.
  • If you are looking for a natural skin cleanser and tonic, opt for geranium essential oil. It can be used directly on the skin or added to your bathwater. It helps tighten and tone the skin and keeps it blemish-free.
  • Geranium promotes hair growth because it regulates the secretion of sebum on the scalp. The essential oil can be added to either, carrier oils or shampoo. This helps give the hair a smooth sheen and a lovely, mild rose aroma.
Rose Geranium

The 17 Best Uses for Geranium Essential Oil, A-Z (TheTruthAboutCancer.com)

#1. Adrenal Health – Geranium has been used for centuries for its ability to support the adrenal glands. It acts as a tonic for the paired adrenal glands that sit atop the kidneys. In so doing, geranium may help those suffering from chronic exhaustion and fatigue.

#2. Allergies – A June 2016 Japanese study found that geranium essential oil had an inhibitory effect on cultured mast cells. These are immune cells involved with triggering allergic reactions, inflammatory conditions and autoimmune dysfunction. Geranium also inhibited tumor necrosis factor (TNF), a cell signaling protein known as a cytokine, involved in systemic inflammation. TNF is also involved in the regulation of immune cells.

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#3. Anxiety, Depression, Nervous Tension – The aroma of geranium is very calming to the nervous system. It helps to relieve nervous tension, melt away anger and aggression, balances emotions, lifts the spirit, and promotes feelings of peace and well-being.

#4. Blood Sugar Problems – Geranium is held in high esteem in Tunisia and is much studied there for its ability to decrease blood glucose levels. Animal studies reported in 2012  revealed that serum glucose levels were significantly decreased in diabetic rats and much more effective than glibenclamide, an antidiabetic drug. Hopefully studies will continue and humans will be included!

Rose Geranium

#5. Brain Clarity & Concentration – Geranium helps to improve cognitive function and improves concentration. It is even being studied for its ability to prevent neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.

#6. Cancer – Geranium has long been used by natural healers for its anti-tumoral properties. One 2002 study found that geraniol had anti-proliferative effects (proliferation is the ability of cancer cells to spread) and, when combined with the chemotherapy drug 5-fluorouracil, had twice the cancer-killing action of  5-fluorouracil alone in cultured colon cancer cells. Several of the researchers in that study released a subsequent study in 2004 showing this combination also worked in mice. Researchers observed a 53% reduction in tumor size using the combination of 5-fluorouracil and geraniol.

A Chinese study reported in 2012 stated that the combination of geranium and several traditional Chinese herbs greatly assisted breast cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy and/or radiation. The geranium/herb combination was found to delay or slow the associated reduction of leukocytes (white blood cells involved in immune function) for women receiving chemotherapy and/or radiation.

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Research released in May 2016 revealed that citronellol can be used in an interesting way. Researchers combined citronellol with the anti-cancer drug cabazitaxel, a taxane used to fight prostate cancer. The combination (called a conjugate self-assembled nanoparticle, or CSNP) improved the drug’s ability to accumulate at the site of a tumor. Researchers said this method was an effective antitumoral, in vitro (test tube).

Rose Geranium

#7. Candida – Because of its strong anti-fungal properties, geranium has been investigated for candida sufferers. Research reported in 2008 found that of three essential oils studied, geranium was the most effective in combination with Amphotericin B, an antifungal drug, against 11 strains of candida. Geranium helps the antifungal drugs work better and they appear to have a synergistic effect. Another study reported in 2008 on mice found that geranium oil suppressed candida cell growth in the vagina.

#8. Cold Sores (Herpes Simplex) – Due to its anti-viral qualities, geranium essential oil is excellent for helping to heal cold sores. It will reduce the pain and size of a cold sore quickly.

#9. Golden Staph and Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) – A research study reported in 2012 demonstrated that geranium has excellent antimicrobial properties against Staphylococcus aureus (“golden staph”) and even methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus. Indeed, the author’s own mother-in-law was diagnosed with MRSA several years ago. Geranium essential oil was one of several essential oils used topically (on the skin), instead of the antibiotic drugs given to her by the doctor. It completely healed the MRSA in what her doctor called “record time.”

#10. Hair and Scalp Health – Geranium has been used traditionally for decades for hair regrowth. It is known to nourish and tone the scalp. Geranium works on the sebaceous (oil) glands of the scalp, regulating the secretion of sebum. This helps to balance both dry and oily scalps, resulting in smooth and silky hair.

#11. Hemorrhoids – The astringent properties of geranium can help to shrink and heal swollen tissue, and ease the pain of hemorrhoids.

Rose Geranium

#12. Inflammatory Conditions – Geranium, and geraniol in particular, has been widely studied for its anti-inflammatory properties. 2014 research indicated geraniol increased interleukin-10 production, which is an anti-inflammatory cytokine. Because inflammation is involved in many disease processes, from arthritis to hemorrhoids to cancer, geranium essential oil is very useful indeed.

#13. Insect Repellent – Bugs don’t like geranium! It is an excellent insect deterrent. Going hiking? Take your geranium essential oil along. 2013 research found that the phytochemical 10-epi-gamma-eudesmol in geranium was just as effective as DEET against ticks.

Even dust mites don’t like geranium. 2008 research found that geraniol and beta-citronellol out-performed DEET and benzyl benzoate (two common chemically-derived mite and lice deterrents, both with side effects) for controlling dust mites. The beta-citronellol component makes geranium very effective for repelling mosquitoes as well. Several research papers investigating effective botanical insecticides have explored this and other essential oils for their ability to kill mosquito larvae.

#14. Shingles – Research released in 2003 found that application of geranium oil was helpful for relieving nerve pain caused by shingles (herpes zoster). Being a good anti-viral, geranium also helps to speed the healing of shingles.

Rose Geranium

#15. Skin Health, Scars, and Regeneration – Due to its potent anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antioxidant properties, geranium has been used for centuries in skin tonics, lotions, moisturizers, and balms for such conditions as dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, oily skin, and acne. It is balancing to the skin’s production of oil and superb for fading scars.

#16. Urinary Tract Infections – 2011 research examined the effect of geranium oil combined with ciprofloxacin, a commonly used drug for treatment of urinary tract infections (UTIs). Researchers found that the oil/drug combo worked synergistically to effectively kill the bacteria causing UTIs.

#17. Wound Healing – Geranium is a natural styptic − it helps to stop the flow of blood. Geranium also speeds wound healing by triggering blood clotting. This process, together with its natural antiseptic action, keeps harmful bacteria from reaching the bloodstream via open wounds and cuts.

Wild Geranium – ‘Cranesbill’

Safety Measures/Side Effects

Pelargonium graveolens is considered a safe and natural ingredient that is repeatedly listed as non-toxic, non-irritant and generally non-sensitizing. The Cosmetics Database finds it to be 99% safe and lists data gaps as the only concern.

However, it may cause allergies and sensitivities in some people. If you’re looking for essential oils that offer the same therapeutic benefits as geranium oil does, your options include lavender oil, orange oil, lemon oil and jasmine oil. To be on the safe side, consult your physician before using any essential oils for medicinal purposes.

Geranium infused oil

How to Make Geranium Oil Infusion

Geranium essential oil is extracted through steam distillation of the plant’s stems and leaves. When made from young, green leaves, geranium oil appears with a lemon scent. However, if extracted from older leaves that have changed their color, the oil will have a strong rose fragrance. While geranium oil is available in stores, it is possible to create a homemade oil infusion.

What You Need:

  • Geranium leaves
  • Mortar and pestle
  • Carrier oil like jojoba oil
  • Large jar with lid
  • Small jars or bottles with lids
  • Strainer
  • Cheesecloth

Procedure:

  • Remove the leaves from a geranium plant (more leaves mean more oil produced).
  • Remove pests, dirt and other debris from the leaves by washing them in cold water.
  • Dry the leaves by gently patting them with a cloth or paper towel.
  • Using the mortar and pestle, ground the leaves until they are completely mashed and pulpy. Leave the crushed leaves for a few hours.
  • Afterward, transfer the ground leaves to the large jar. Pour some of the carrier oil — just enough to cover the leaves. Then, seal the jar and place it in a cool, dry spot. Set aside for two weeks.
  • Once the two weeks are up, check the scent of the oil. You may add more ground leaves to make the scent stronger and set aside for another week. If the fragrance is too strong, just add some oil to dilute the finished product.
  • To store, pour the geranium oil into the small sterilized jars or bottles through a strainer lined with a cheesecloth. This will separate the crushed leaves from the oil. Once the oil has been transferred, seal the bottles/jars and store them in a cool, dry place.
Pink Geranium

Homemade Conditioner

This homemade conditioner recipe is awesome, for it helps to restore the hairs natural pH, thus rehydrating the hair. The result is soft, luscious and healthy hair. Add 10 drops of geranium oil and see how it helps to condition your dry hair.

 Total Time: 2 minutes  Uses: 20–30

 INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 10 drops of essential oils
  • BPA-free plastic bottles or glass bottle with dispenser

 Customize Your Conditioner:

  • Rosemary or sage essential oils for all types of hair
  • Lemon, bergamot or tea tree essential oils for oily hair
  • Lavender, sandalwood or geranium essential oils for dry hair or dandruff

DIRECTIONS:

  • Mix ingredients together in eight-ounce spray bottle
  • Shake bottle before using and then spray hair
  • Leave in hair for five minutes, then rinse

Tips for Using Geranium Essential Oil

A) Massage geranium into the skin and muscles of the back, especially mid-back and just over the bottom of the rib cage (over area of the kidneys). Use an organic carrier oil like jojoba, almond, coconut, hemp, or argan to dilute if desired or if you have sensitive skin.

B) Drip 1-2 drops of oil into your hands and make a tent over your nose and mouth (avoid the eyes), breathe in deeply for a couple of minutes.

C) Using an ultrasonic cool mist diffuser, diffuse several drops of geranium into a room where you intend to sit for an hour or so.

D) Massage oil into the soles of the feet. They have the largest pores in the body and the oil will be in the bloodstream and working in just a few minutes. This method works especially well if digestion is impaired.

E) Gently massage oil into the sides of the neck, overlying the carotid arteries, diluting as described in A above if needed. Also massage into the back of the neck just under the base of the skull.

F) Geranium essential oil is generally regarded as safe for human consumption by the United States Food & Drug Administration (FDA). To take orally, put 1 drop of oil in 3-4 ounces (about 100 ml) of liquid such as almond or rice milk. It can also be combined with 1 teaspoon of honey. Avoid for children under 5 years of age.

G) Massage geranium oil into the abdomen and lower back.

H) Rub a drop of geranium on the affected area, being careful to dilute if you have sensitive skin. If using as an insect repellent, rub geranium into exposed skin.

I) Add a drop or two of geranium oil to one teaspoon of jojoba oil and pat it on topically. Use a small amount of gauze if you wish to hold it in place.

J) Add a drop or two of geranium to your favorite organic personal care products like cleanser, body wash, moisturizer, toner, shampoo, or conditioner.

Wild Geranium – ‘Cranesbill’

Important Precautions When Using Essential Oils

If you intend to use geranium essential oil medicinally, please do your homework and work with a qualified healthcare practitioner who is well versed in essential oil usage.

  • Be aware that quality of essential oils varies widely. Find out whether or not your essential oil supplier uses organic growing methods, and knows how to properly distill the oils. Always buy your oils from a trusted source because if they are not organically grown or properly distilled they may be adulterated with toxic chemicals that will not help to heal you… and may indeed cause harm.
  • Do not apply essential oils anywhere near eyes, ears, or sensitive regions of the body.
  • If you have sensitive skin, be sure to dilute essential oils first. If you are unsure, do a patch test on a small area of skin just inside the elbow. You may want to dilute essential oils with an organic carrier oil such as jojoba, almond, coconut, hemp, or argan.
  • Be cautious when using essential oils with children and in pregnancy. Always dilute essential oils for children. Some oils need to be avoided during pregnancy. When in doubt, work with an experienced expert in essential oils.
  • It is not recommended to use any essential oil by itself as a sole treatment for cancer, or for any other health issues mentioned above. When used in combination with other treatments, both conventional and alternative, essential oils can be very effective in assisting the healing process.

References:

  1. https://kollectionk.com/blogs/news/everything-you-need-to-know-about-skin-care-oils
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pelargonium_graveolens
  3. https://www.truthinaging.com/ingredients/pelargonium-graveolens
  4. https://plants.usda.gov/core/profile?symbol=PEGR11
  5. https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/geranium-oil.aspx
  6. http://www.reherb.eu/en/content/pelargonium-graveolens
  7. https://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Pelargonium+graveolens
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4312398/
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3641007/
  10. http://ageless.co.za/rose_scented_geranium.htm
  11. http://www.academicjournals.org/journal/JMPR/article-full-text-pdf/054149D15942
  12. https://hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/med-aro/factsheets/GERANIUM.html
  13. https://thetruthaboutcancer.com/geranium-essential-oil/
  14. http://nopr.niscair.res.in/bitstream/123456789/33014/1/IJTK%2014(4)%20558-563.pdf
  15. http://essentialoils.co.za/essential-oils/rose-geranium.htm
  16. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/283051914_An_overview_on_phytopharmacology_of_Pelargonium_graveolens_L
  17. https://draxe.com/10-geranium-oils-benefits-healthy-skin-much/
  18. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3793238/
  19. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25514231
  20. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18670079
  21. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23401038
  22. http://www.acanceresearch.com/cancer-research/pelargonium-graveolens-rose-geranium–a-novel-therapeutic-agent-for-antibacterial-antioxidant-antifungal-and-diabetics.pdf
  23. https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-153-rose%20geranium%20oil.aspx?activeingredientid=153&activeingredientname=rose%20geranium%20oil
  24. http://arnoldia.arboretum.harvard.edu/pdf/articles/1974-34-3-aromatic-pelargoniums.pdf
  25. https://www.cabdirect.org/cabdirect/abstract/20013071662
  26. https://www.hchs.edu/sites/default/files/files/Geranium%20article.pdf
  27. http://japsonline.com/admin/php/uploads/1200_pdf.pdf
  28. https://www.naturalbynature.co.uk/organic-geranium
  29. https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/agricultural-and-biological-sciences/geranium
  30. https://www.newdirectionsaromatics.com/blog/products/all-about-geranium-oil.html
  31. http://www.essencejournal.com/pdf/2014/vol2issue2/PartA/2-2-8-979.pdf
  32. http://www.doctorsbeyondmedicine.com/listing/candida-geranium-oil
  33. http://www.globalsciencebooks.info/Online/GSBOnline/images/2010/MAPSB_4(SI1)/MAPSB_4(SI1)77-79o.pdf
  34. https://www.rxlist.com/rose_geranium_oil/supplements.htm
  35. https://lipidworld.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1476-511X-12-30
  36. http://www.worldresearchlibrary.org/up_proc/pdf/420-147558255618-21.pdf
  37. http://ijm.tums.ac.ir/index.php/ijm/article/download/681.pdf/451
  38. http://www.worldresearchlibrary.org/up_proc/pdf/420-147558255618-21.pdf
  39. http://www.theresearchpedia.com/health/aromatherapy/health-benefits-of-geranium-essential-oil

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil (Cocos nucifera)

Coconut oil, or copra oil, is an edible oil extracted from the kernel or meat of mature coconuts harvested from the coconut palm (Cocos nucifera). It has various applications. Because of its high saturated fat content, it is slow to oxidize and, thus, resistant to rancidification, lasting up to six months at 24 °C (75 °F) without spoiling.

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Due to its high levels of saturated fat, the World Health Organization, the United States Department of Health and Human Services, United States Food and Drug Administration, American Heart Association, American Dietetic Association, British National Health Service, British Nutrition Foundation, and Dietitians of Canada advise that coconut oil consumption should be limited or avoided.

Coconut oil contains a large proportion of lauric acid, a saturated fat that raises total blood cholesterol levels by increasing both the amount of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Although this may create a more favorable total blood cholesterol profile, this does not exclude the possibility that persistent consumption of coconut oil may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease through other mechanisms, particularly via the marked increase of blood cholesterol induced by lauric acid. Because the majority of saturated fat in coconut oil is lauric acid, coconut oil may be preferred over partially hydrogenated vegetable oil when solid fats are used in the diet. Due to its high content of saturated fat with corresponding high caloric burden, regular use of coconut oil in food preparation may promote weight gain.

Nutrition and fat composition

Coconut oil is 99% fat, composed mainly of saturated fats (82% of total; table). In a 100 gram reference amount, coconut oil supplies 890 Calories. Half of the saturated fat content of coconut oil is lauric acid, while other significant saturated fats are myristoleic acid and palmitoleic acid. Monounsaturated fats comprise 6% of total fats, and polyunsaturated fats comprise 2% (table). Coconut oil contains phytosterols, but there are no micronutrients having significant content (table).

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Nutritional Profile of Coconut Oil: Part of the reason coconut oil is such a powerhouse superfood is its unique nutritional profile. It was avoided and shunned for years because of its 92% saturated fat content but recent research is showing this stigma was unwarranted. Most of the fats in coconut oil are saturated but they are in the form of MCTs (Medium Chain Triglycerides, also called MCFAs), which affect the body differently than short and long chain fats.

  1. Saturated fatty acids: Most of them are medium chain triglycerides, which are supposed to assimilate well in the body’s systems.
  2. Lauric acid: It is the chief contributor, representing more than 40% of the total, followed by capric acid, caprylic acid, myristic acid and palmitic. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin. Lauric acid is helpful in dealing with viruses and diseases.
  3. Capric acid: It reacts with certain enzymes secreted by other bacteria, which subsequently converts it into a powerful antimicrobial agent, monocaprin.
  4. Caprylic acid, caproic acid, and myristic acid: They are rich in antimicrobial and antifungal properties
  5. Unsaturated fatty acids: Polyunsaturated fatty acids- linoleic acid, monounsaturated fatty acids- oleic acid
  6. Poly-phenols: Coconut contains gallic acid, which is also known as phenolic acid. These polyphenols are responsible for the fragrance and the taste of coconut oil. Virgin Coconut Oil is rich in these polyphenols.
  7. Derivatives of fatty acid: Betaines, ethanolamide, ethoxylates, fatty esters, fatty polysorbates, monoglycerides and polyol esters.
  8. Derivatives of fatty alcohols: Fatty chlorides, fatty alcohol sulfate, and fatty alcohol ether sulfate
  9. Vitamins and Minerals: Vitamin E, vitamin K, and minerals such as iron.

Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFAs) or Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs)

Most of the fats we consume are long chain fatty acids that must be broken down before they can be absorbed. Coconut oil is high in short and medium chain fatty acids, which are easily digested and sent right to the liver for energy production. Because MCFAs are sent right to the liver for digestion, no bile or pancreatic enzymes are needed for digestion, making coconut oil a healthy food even for those with diabetes or those who have gallbladder problems. MCFAs can help increase metabolism since they are sent directly to the liver and give the body an instant source of energy. Most of the MCFAs in coconut oil are the highly beneficial Lauric Acid.

Benefits of MCFAs (MCTs)

  • All of these MCTs are beneficial to the body. They are metabolized differently than longer chain fats, going straight from the digestive system to the liver. This provides a quick source of energy and brain fuel.
  • These rare oils are naturally free of cholesterol and hard to find in nature.
  • This may be part of the reason that coconut oil is so beneficial to the brain and for weight loss. It isn’t digested or stored in the same was as other fats and is more quickly available for use.
  • Coconut oil is also a decent source of several fat soluble vitamins (mainly A and K) as well as healthy polyphenols.

Types of Coconut Oil

Unrefined Organic Coconut Oil: Considered the gold standard. This type of oil offers the most of the benefits listed above. It is extracted from fresh coconut using a wet-milled fermentation process that protects the beneficial properties of the coconut. This type of coconut oil has been found to have the highest antioxidant levels. This process does use heat but studies show that it does not harm the oil or reduce nutrient levels. In fact, the heat may be beneficial and create a higher quality oil.

“Extra Virgin” Oil: The gold standard for olive oil but not coconut oil. This is produced by cold-pressing the oil and does not preserve the antioxidants as well. In 2013, a study that compared “cold extracted virgin coconut oil” (CEVCO) with “hot extracted virgin coconut oil” (HEVCO) and standard refined coconut oil (CCO) was conducted in India, and published in the journal Food Science and Biotechnology. This study, like many others, showed that virgin coconut oils actually lower LDL cholesterol, while raising the “good” HDL cholesterol. This study also confirmed that virgin coconut oil produced with heat produced the highest amounts of antioxidants: “The antioxidant activity in the HEVCO group was 80-87%, 65-70% in CEVCO, and 35-45% in CCO.” The researchers went on to comment why heat is necessary to produce the highest amounts of antioxidants in virgin coconut oil.

Refined Coconut Oils: often tasteless and has no coconut smell. It is usually heated, bleached and deodorized. Healthy options are available but many refined coconut oils do not have the benefits of unrefined.

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Fractionated oil or MCT oil is a liquid oil that does not get solid below 76 degrees like unrefined oil does. It doesn’t contain all of the beneficial properties of unrefined coconut oil but is higher in brain-boosting fats.

Coconut Oil Benefits  

Coconut Oil for Hair– This nourishing oil has been used for centuries in hair and its unique fat composition makes it especially beneficial for certain hair types. Use it as a hair mask, hot oil treatment, or in homemade hair products.

To Moisturize and Nourish Skin– The same properties make coconut oil great for skin as well. Many people like to use it as a natural moisturizer. Its natural antioxidant properties make it great for stopping wrinkles and skin irritation. Coconut oil is wonderful as a face cleanser, moisturizer and sun screen, but also it can treat many skin disorders. The fatty acids (caprylic and lauric) in coconut oil reduce inflammation internally and externally and moisturize, making them a great solution for all types of skin conditions. It protects the skin and has many antioxidants that make it ideal for healing the skin. In addition, the antimicrobial properties balance out the candida or fungal sources that can cause many skin conditions. There’s so much unrefined coconut oil can do for skin.

Help remineralize teeth – Calcium is an important component of our teeth. Since coconut oil facilitates absorption of calcium by the body, it helps in developing strong teeth. It also stops tooth decay. Recent research suggests that it is also beneficial in reducing plaque formation and plaque-induced gingivitis. Oil pulling with coconut oil has been used for centuries as a way to cleanse the mouth of bacteria and help heal periodontal disease. Coconut oil is one of the most effective oils for oil pulling due to its high concentration of antibacterial MCFAs. By swishing the oil in your mouth, the oil denatures the bacteria and sticks to it. Removing oral bacteria greatly reduces your risk of periodontal disease. If you want to heal your gums and repair your teeth, its recommended to do coconut oil pulling three times a week for 20 minutes a day.

Digestive Help– Coconut oil’s concentration of beneficial fats in coconut oil makes it helpful for digestion. Coconut oil helps to improve the digestive system, and thus, prevents various stomach and digestion-related problems including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The saturated fats present in it have antimicrobial properties and help in dealing with various bacteria, fungi, and parasites that can cause indigestion. It also helps in the absorption of other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. Coconut oil can help improve bacteria and gut health by destroying bad bacteria and candida. Candida imbalance especially can decrease stomach acid, which causes inflammation and poor digestion. All this together means coconut oil benefits digestive health and helps treat or prevent stomach ulcers and ulcerative colitis.

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Keeping Organs Healthy – The presence of medium chain triglycerides and fatty acids in coconut oil helps in preventing liver diseases. This is because those substances are easily converted into energy when they reach the liver, thus reducing the workload of the liver and also preventing accumulation of fat. It also helps in preventing kidney and gall bladder diseases and helps to dissolve kidney stones. Coconut oil is also believed to be useful in keeping pancreas healthy by treating pancreatitis. The MCFAs of coconut oil do not need the pancreatic enzymes to be broken down, so taking coconut oil eases the strain on the pancreas. Additionally, this superfood is so easy to digest that it has been known to improve the symptoms of gallbladder disease as well. Replace other long-chain fats with coconut oil to improve gallbladder and total body health.

Great Source of Healthy Fats– Over 50% of the fat in coconut oil is lauric acid. In fact, coconut oil is the richest source of lauric acid after breastmilk. Topically, it helps skin heal faster after injury or infection because of its beneficial fats – When applied to infected areas, coconut oil forms a chemical layer that protects the infected body part from external dust, air, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. It is highly effective on bruises because it speeds up the healing process of damaged tissues.

Mental Boost– Studies show MCTs may contribute to focus and mental performance. In a 2004 study published in the Journal of Neurobiology of Aging, researchers found that the MCFAs in coconut oil improved the memory problems in their older subjects. Across all the patients there was a marked improvement in their recall ability after taking this fatty acid. As the MCFAs are absorbed easily in the body and can be accessed in the brain without the use of insulin. Thus, they are able to fuel brain cells more efficiently.

Hormone Support– Getting the wrong kinds of fats can create havoc on hormones. Coconut oil contains specific fats that support the body’s natural hormone production. Coconut oil may help naturally balance hormones because it’s a great source of saturated fat, including lauric acid. Studies have found that coconut oil may be an excellent fat to consume during menopause and also may have positives effects on estrogen levels. In order to naturally balance hormones, reduce sugar and grain consumption and load up on healthy fats from coconut, avocado, flax seeds and ghee. You can also consume other coconut forms, such as coconut butter or coconut water.

Immune Support– The MCTs have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties that make it beneficial for immune support. It strengthens the immune system because it contains antimicrobial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid, which have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin, which research has supported as an effective way to deal with viruses and bacteria that cause diseases like herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and even HIV. Coconut oil helps in fighting harmful bacteria like listeria monocytogenes and Helicobacter pylori, and harmful protozoa such as giardia lamblia. According to the Coconut Research Center, coconut oil kills the viruses that cause influenza, measles, hepatitis, herpes, SARS, and other serious health risks. It also kills bacteria that cause ulcers, throat infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and gonorrhea. Finally, coconut oil is also effective in the elimination of fungi and yeast that cause ringworm, athlete’s foot, thrush, and diaper rash.

Helps in AIDS & Cancer Treatment – It is believed that coconut oil plays an instrumental role in reducing the viral susceptibility of HIV and cancer patients. Preliminary research has shown an indication of this effect of coconut oil on reducing the viral load of HIV patients.

Boosts Heart Health – This is a controversial topic. There is enough research to prove that coconut oil is not good for the heart due to the presence of saturated fats. While there is also research that shows that coconut oil is good for the heart. Lauric acid present in coconut oil helps in actively preventing various heart problems like high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. Coconut oil does not lead to increase in LDL levels, and it reduces the incidence of injury and damage to arteries and therefore helps in preventing atherosclerosis. A study suggests that intake of coconut oil may help in maintaining healthy lipid profiles in pre-menopausal women. So, finally, is coconut oil good or bad for the heart? Well, if you are using it for edible purposes, check your cholesterol levels regularly. If you find them increasing, it is better to stop the intake. In any case, do consult a professional medical practitioner before you start consuming coconut oil. Never play with your (and someone else’s) heart!

Great fat for cooking- Coconut oil is a stable oil that doesn’t break down easily at high temperatures like other oils do. It doesn’t go rancid easily and has amazing nutritional properties. It is great for cooking eggs, stir fries, grain free baked goods, and practically any other cooking use.

Prevents Candida – Candida, also known as Systemic Candidiasis, is a tragic disease caused by an excessive and uncontrolled growth of yeast called Candida albicans in the stomach. Coconut provides relief from the inflammation caused by candida, both externally and internally. Its high moisture retaining capacity keeps the skin from cracking or peeling off. Capric acid, caprylic acid, caproic acid, myristic acid and lauric acid found in coconut oil help in eliminating Candida albicans. Further, unlike other pharmaceutical treatments for candida, the effect of coconut oil is gradual and not drastic or sudden, which gives the patient an appropriate amount of time to get used to the withdrawal symptoms or Herxheimer reactions (the name given to the symptoms accompanying body’s rejection of toxins generated during elimination of these fungi). But in the treatment of this condition, people should systematically and gradually increase their dosages of coconut oil, and shouldn’t initially start with a large quantity.

Speeds weight loss when consumed daily – It contains short and medium-chain fatty acids that help in taking off excessive weight. Research suggests that it helps to reduce abdominal obesity in women. It is also easy to digest as compared to other edible oils and helps in healthy functioning of the thyroid and endocrine system. Further, it increases body’s metabolic rate by removing stress on the pancreas, thereby, burning more energy and helping obese and overweight people lose weight. Hence, people living in tropical coastal areas, who use coconut oil every day as their primary cooking oil, are normally not fat, obese or overweight. Several people focus on exercises to lose weight, from using indoor machines like leg press machines to outdoor exercises like running and playing sports. While this is a good approach to lose weight, including products like coconut oil enhances your weight loss efforts.

Other Benefits – Coconut oil is strongly recommended for a number of other benefits that are explained below. Using this oil has been shown to mildly help the following:

Stress relief: Coconut oil is very soothing, and hence it helps in removing stress. Applying it to the head, followed by a gentle massage, helps eliminate mental fatigue. According to research virgin coconut oil gives relief from stress and has antioxidant properties.

Diabetes: Coconut oil helps in controlling blood sugar, and improves the secretion of insulin. It also promotes the effective utilization of blood glucose, thereby, preventing and treating diabetes. When cells refuse to respond to insulin and no longer take in glucose for energy, then they’re considered insulin-resistant. The pancreas then pumps out more insulin to compensate and creates an overproduction cycle. Insulin resistance is the precursor to type II diabetes. The MCFAs in coconut oil help balance the insulin reactions in the cells and promote healthy digestive process. They take off the strain on the pancreas and give the body a consistent energy source that is not dependent on glucose reactions, which can prevent insulin resistance and type II diabetes.

Bones: As mentioned earlier, coconut oil improves the ability of our body to absorb important minerals. These include calcium and magnesium, which are necessary for the development of bones. Thus, it is very useful for women who are prone to osteoporosis after middle age. Oxidative stress and free radicals are the two biggest culprits of osteoporosis. Since coconut oil has such high levels of antioxidants, which help fight free radicals, it is a leading natural treatment for osteoporosis. Another of the amazing coconut oil benefits is that it increases calcium absorption in the gut. Research on osteoporosis has found that coconut oil not only increases bone volume and structure in subjects, but also decreased bone loss due to osteoporosis.

Boosts Energy: Coconut oil is often used by athletes, bodybuilders and by those who are dieting. The reason behind this being that it contains fewer calories than other oils, its fat content is easily converted into energy, and it does not lead to accumulation of fat in the heart and arteries. It helps boost energy and endurance, and generally, enhances the performance of athletes. Coconut oil is easy to digest and also produces a longer sustained energy and increases your metabolism. When taking a quality unrefined coconut oil, you can get the most coconut oil benefits as its MCFAs are sent directly to the liver to be converted into energy. Today, many triathletes use coconut oil as their source of fuel during training and races for long-distance events. You can make a homemade energy fuel by mixing coconut oil, raw honey and chia seeds together. Simply put together one tablespoon of each and consume 30 minutes prior to exercise.

Coconut oil and Alzheimer’s disease: The research conducted by Dr. Newport states that the oil is useful in treating Alzheimer’s disease. One of the most beneficial properties of coconut oil is the large quantity of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA) that it contains, as opposed to the long-chain fatty acids that many other foods contain. The reasoning behind the benefits of this type of acid is that medium-chain fatty acids are not only absorbed easily by the liver, but they are also metabolized quickly. This means they can further be converted into ketones. Ketones are utilized by the brain as an important energy source and have been shown to have possible therapeutic effects on people suffering from memory loss, such as in case of Alzheimer’s disease. Additionally, unique phenolic compounds and hormones found in coconut oil may be able to prevent the aggregation of amyloid beta peptides, which are part of a leading theory concerning the cause of Alzheimer’s.

Use as Carrier Oil

Carrier oils are those oils, which easily penetrate or absorb into the skin, facilitating seepage or absorption of other oils (such as essential oils) and herbal extracts when mixed into it. It is easily absorbed through the skin’s pores and thus is used as a carrier oil. Furthermore, being one of the most stable oils, it doesn’t go rancid, nor does it let the other oils, herbal extracts, or medicines spoil inside of it. It does not alter the properties of the oils and herbs mixed within it. It also protects the herbs and oils from microbial or fungal interactions. Coconut oil is expensive in several countries; however, in tropical countries, its cost is low enough to make it affordable as a carrier oil.

Coconut Oil Beauty Uses

Coconut oil is an excellent massage oil that acts as an effective moisturizer on all types of skin, including dry skin. Unlike mineral oil, there is no chance of having any adverse side effects on the skin from the application of this oil. Therefore, it has been safely used for thousands of years for preventing dryness and flaking of skin. Yes, you read it right – thousands of years! Coconut oil usage may be termed as a recent fad, but it has been there for ages.

It also helps in treating various skin problems, including psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema, and other skin infections. For this exact reason, coconut oil forms the base ingredient of various body care products like soaps, lotions, and creams that are used for skin care. What more? It also delays the appearance of wrinkles and sagging of skin, which normally accompany aging. The credit to this benefit goes to its well-known antioxidant properties.

Some examples of uses include:

  1. With other oils as part of an oil cleansing regimen for beautiful skin
  2. Whipped with shea butter for a soothing body balm
  3. In homemade lotion bars with other beneficial ingredients like shea butter
  4. In homemade deodorant– its natural antibacterial properties make it helpful in fighting odor.
  5. Coconut oil makes an excellent eye-makeup remover on its own
  6. It may help lighten age spots when rubbed directly on the skin
  7. To help increase sun tolerance and avoid burning when used internally
  8. As a naturally low SPF sunscreen on its own when used topically
  9. In basic homemade lotion recipes
  10. Add a couple drops of a favorite essential oil to make a delicious massage oil
  11. Mixed with equal parts sugar for a smoothing body scrub (use in the shower)
  12. In homemade slow cooker soap
  13. To make natural Homemade Sunscreen recipes with other protective ingredients
  14. As a natural personal lubricant that won’t disturb vaginal flora
  15. As a natural shave cream and after shave lotion
  16. Use it alone as a great tanning oil
  17. Mix with seal salt to remove dry skin on feet
  18. In natural homemade diaper cream
  19. Use it alone or with baking soda as a natural deodorant
  20. By itself or with baking soda as a naturally whitening toothpaste
  21. Make homemade peppermint lip balm
  22. Or make magnesium body butter
  23. Rub on cuticles to help nails grow
  24. Rub into elbows daily to help alleviate dry, flaky elbows
  25. To help avoid chlorine exposure when swimming
  26. As a completely natural baby lotion
  27. Rubbed on lips as a natural lip balm or used in lip balm recipes

Coconut Oil For Hair –

This thick butter-like oil helps in healthy growth of hair and makes your hair shiny. It is also highly effective in reducing protein loss, which if unchecked can lead to various unhealthy qualities in your hair. This is the reason why it is used as hair care oil, and in manufacturing various conditioners, and dandruff relief creams. Now you must be thinking how to use coconut oil for your hair? Just apply it topically to your hair or use a coconut oil hair mask. It is an excellent conditioner and helps the re-growth process of damaged hair. It also provides the essential proteins required for nourishing and healing damaged hair. Research studies indicate that it provides better protection to hair from damage caused by hygral fatigue. By regularly massaging your head with coconut oil, you can ensure that your scalp is dandruff free, even if your scalp is chronically dry. It also helps in keeping your hair and scalp free from lice and lice eggs (yes, some people do get lice in their hair).

  1. Rub into scalp daily to stimulate hair growth
  2. Or use in homemade shampoo bars
  3. A tiny dab rubbed on your hands and then through hair makes a great anti-frizz treatment
  4. As an incredibly intensive natural conditioner- Rub into dry hair, put a shower cap on and leave for several hours before washing out with several rounds of shampoo

Coconut Oil Uses Around the Home

  1. To make a simple homemade soap
  2. Or make a clay and charcoal soothing soap
  3. Rub a small amount into real leather to soften and condition (shiny leather only… test a small area first)
  4. And use a small amount to dilute essential oils for use on skin
  5. For pets struggling with skin issues when used externally
  6. In coconut oil dog treats
  7. On hands after doing dishes to avoid dry skin
  8. Mixed with catnip, rosemary, or mint essential oils as a natural bug repellent
  9. Natural Remedies for Coconut Oil
  10. Coconut oil – oil pulling chews with essential oils
  11. Rubbed on the inside of your nose it may help alleviate allergy symptoms
  12. The antimicrobial and antibacterial properties make it helpful topically to kill yeast or yeast infections
  13. The antimicrobial properties and beneficial fats make coconut oil a powerhouse in Remineralizing Toothpaste
  14. Can help sooth psoriasis or eczema
  15. Oil pulling with coconut oil and a drop of oregano oil helps improve gum health
  16. Can help improve cholesterol ratios
  17. Can help reduce appearance of varicose veins when used topically
  18. After initial heat is gone, can help speed healing of sunburn
  19. Blend a tablespoon into hot tea to help speed recovery from cold or flu
  20. It’s anti-inflammatory properties can help lessen arthritis
  21. Can reduce the itch of mosquito bites
  22. Can help resolve acne when used regularly
  23. A tablespoon melted into a cup of warm tea can help sooth a sore throat
  24. In homemade vapor rub
  25. Can be used internally and externally to speed recovery from UTIs
  26. In a salve for cracked heels
  27. One reader swears by using coconut oil to treat yeast infection. She suggests soaking a tampon in it and inserting the tampon for a few hours.
  28. Naturally clears up cold sores
  29. Ingesting coconut oil daily can help with allergy symptoms
  30. Some people say ingesting coconut oil daily can increase mental alertness
  31. Coconut Oil for Pregnancies, Babies and Children
  32. As a cloth diaper safe diaper cream (just rub on baby’s bottom)
  33. Used in kids ears with chamomile essential oil to help speed ear infection healing
  34. In place of Lanolin cream on nursing nipples to sooth irritation (also great for baby!)
  35. Nursing moms can take a couple tablespoons a day (and Vitamin D) to increase milk supply and nutrients
  36. To help soothe the itch of chicken pox or poison ivy
  37. Use on skin to avoid stretch marks during pregnancy
  38. Used directly on the perineum to help heal after birth
  39. To get rid of cradle cap on baby- just massage in to head, leave on for a few minutes and gently rinse with a warm wash cloth
  40. With apple cider vinegar as a natural treatment for lice that actually works

Uses for Coconut Oil in Cooking and Recipes

  1. A great cooking oil with a high smoke point. Great for baking, stir-frys or as a dairy free replacement to butter.
  2. Try adding to foods or smoothies daily for energy
  3. Or emulsify into coffee for a homemade coffee creamer (The only way I’ll drink coffee)
  4. In homemade Mayo without the high PUFA vegetable oils
  5. To season cast iron skillets
  6. It’s high Lauric acid and MCFA content helps boost metabolism when used in foods
  7. In healthy brain boosting snack for kids like Coconut Clusters
  8. Add to a filling and energy boosting Brain Power Smoothie
  9. Mix a tablespoon with a tablespoon of chia seeds for an all-day energy boost (do NOT take this at night!)
  10. Use as a replacement for vegetable oils in any recipe or in cooking
  11. Or try your hand at making coconut based grain free granola recipes
  12. My kids love these homemade meltaways (like candy)
  13. Use it as an anti-aging facial moisturizer
  14. Or make coconut cream concentrate for a brain boosting snack

Recipes

Body Scrub – Moisturize while getting rid of dead skin cells by making your own body (or facial) scrub. Just mix coconut oil with coconut sugar to reveal smoother skin. Try it a few times a week.

Coconut Oil Shampoo – Here is one of my favorite coconut oil shampoo recipes, that will leave your hair feeling soft and healthy. As every person’s hair is different, feel free to adjust the coconut oil level to suit your hair needs. For fine hair you may reduce the coconut oil amount as needed to 1/4 cup, and for thick dry or curly hair, you may need to increase this amount or add a few drops of avocado oil as well.

  • 1 cup liquid castile soap
  • 1/3 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 50-60 drops of favorite essential oils

Melt coconut oil and coconut milk together over very low heat, as to not damage any of the nutrients. Pour into a bottle with a secure lid, and top with the castile soap. Shake well. And then, shake some more. Add 50 drops of your favorite essential oils, and shake again. Great essential oils for hair include lavender, wild orange, peppermint, lemongrass, rosemary, clary sage, and rosemary. This shampoo will not be as thick as commercial shampoos; squeeze on hair directly from the bottle. Wash, and rinse well.

Coconut Oil Conditioner

  • 2/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon vitamin E oil
  • 1 tablespoon Jojoba oil
  • 10 drops of your favorite essential oil

Mix all ingredients in a bowl with a hand mixer until well combined. This may take several minutes. You want a smooth and creamy conditioner. In the shower, after washing hair with Coconut Oil Shampoo, use a teaspoon or two and smooth through hair. Allow to penetrate hair for the remainder of your shower, and rinse very well.

NOTE: If you color your hair, especially red, coconut oil may fade the color. For most hair types and colors, it will not.

BONUS: Coconut oil is a great base for natural hair colors as it penetrates the hair shaft. For darker hair, mix 2 tablespoons of coconut oil with 1 cup of strong coffee, with 1 tablespoon of spent grounds, and apply to hair. Allow to sit for 45 – 60 minutes, the longer you leave it, the darker the results. Rinse well and style as desired.

For blonde hair, or to add subtle highlights, mix 1/2 cup of strong chamomile tea, ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, and ¼ cup coconut oil in a blender until emulsified. Apply to hair and roots and cover with a shower cap. Sit in the sun, or use a hair dryer to keep the cap warm for 45 minutes to 75 minutes. Rinse well.

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