The Wonders of Wintergreen

Thanks for tuning in again natural beauties. This week a client and friend brought me a gift from the USA – Wintergreen Life Savers. She had promised she would bring some back to me so I could have a taste – and had been inspired to do this after I used wintergreen in an oil blend for one of her treatments. She said that this lolly was a blast from the past and a loved candy from her childhood.

 

**************************************************************************************************************

Please check out my book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

 

As you can see from the comment in my pic above – wintergreen as a flavouring for a candy is very unusual for me (and I would think many Aussies too). To me it’s like eating a sports rub like Deep Heat or Dencorub. It is commonly used as a flavouring in America, but I’m not sure if it’s embraced the same way in other parts of the world. After the initial blast and sensation of the essential oil of wintergreen in my mouth, the fragrance subsided into a general sweetness. Phew.

Some of my classic aromatherapy text books warn against using this oil at all, which seems strange when you can eat it in a lolly )this is however, at an extremely low dosage). Wintergreen is an essential oil of warmth, expansion and healing and can be used in an external oil blend for:

  • sore muscles
  • a chest cough
  • a headache
  • tension
  • poor circulation

I think the reason this oil is misunderstood is that some texts say it is high in the same chemical constituents that are in aspirin – but that’s not quite true. It has a high concentration of methyl salicylate ……

“Methyl salicylate is good for some people, not for others. A blanket contraindication is not necessary, but it is best avoided in pregnancy – all salicylates are teratogenic in sufficient amount, including methyl salicylate and aspirin (acetyl salicylic acid). Methyl salicylate must be absolutely avoided by anyone taking blood-thinning drugs, as it increases the action of the drug, and this causes blood to leak into tissues and  internal bruising occurs.

 

Wintergreen oil has some wonderful properties, but I would not like to see it used at more than 5%.”

 

Robert Tisserand

 

wintergreen - Gaultheria procumbens

wintergreen – Gaultheria procumbens

 

NB: As Robert Tisserand says above, he would not recommend using this at a higher concentration then 5%. Well 5% is a very high concentration in aromatherapy as mostly our oil blends are a standard 2.5%.

I have used this oil with an elderly client who is on blood thinners and it really helps him with back pain. I don’t use it all the time and when I do make a blend I always add other oils too.

Common sense and intuition must always play a part when you use essential oils. One size does not fit all. 

 

Here are a few recipes for an oil blend at 2.5%

For a coat of your body use 3 teaspoons of carrier oil in a little dish and, add 7 – 8 drops of essential oil. It’s always best to patch test first, before you apply all over.

***** Always put the drops of essential oil into the bottle or dish first, then add the carrier oil. It gives the scents time to create a synergistic fusion.

For a 50ml bottle of oil add 25 drops and see my articles “Ratios for Blending Essential Oils – A Reminder of the Basics” and “Aromatherapy – It’s Easy as 1 2 3”

 

Wintergreen with frost - pic via http://tcpermaculture.com/

Wintergreen with frost – pic via http://tcpermaculture.com/

 

“BRRR I’m Freezing”

Wintergreen     1 drop

Lemon             7 drops

 


 

“The Anti Cough”

Wintergreen         2 drops

Marjoram             2 drops

Frankincense     4 drops

 


 

“Period Pain-Away”

Wintergreen     2 drops

Lavender         4 drops

Peppermint     1 drop

 


 

“Oh My Aching Knees”

Wintergreen     3 drops

Ginger             3ginger drops

Cypress          2 drops

 


Do you like wintergreen?

Remember to treat yourself first, then everyone will benefit.

Check out my YouTube channel too, thanks.

copyright-2017

The Start of the Vlog!

Video

Please check out my new book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Amazon USA      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as a Kindle and Paperback


The Start of the Vlog!

at the movies!

at the movies!

I’ve started my YouTube channel to try something new.

I’ve been writing 2 articles a week for just over 2 years, and sometimes it’s hard to find things to write about – especially now I have a book to promote too.

I’ve got a way to go with presenting style but I’d be grateful if you hang in there with me, as I talk about essential oils and aromatherapy.

This week I introduced myself – now you know what I look like (but after having said that I had just come from the hairdresser’s so it’s not always going to be that pretty)

etoile

 

 

 

And I also talked about Fennel Oil:

etoile

 

 

 

So with a few less “ums” and “ahs” and “so’s” and “yeah’s”, I’m looking forward to doing some new things. Please subscribe to my channel if you feel so inclined.

hearts to you

hearts to you

 

Thanks so much everyone,

Suzanne

copryright SR Banks 2014

 

 

 

Caraway Essential Oil – What’s That Used For?

Caraway botanical drawing from Kohler's Medizinal Pflanzen

Caraway botanical drawing from Kohler’s Medizinal Pflanzen

Caraway essential oil is steam distilled from the caraway seed of the plant Carum carvi. This belongs to the Umbellifrae (also known as Apiacae) family and the genus Carum. Other similar plants belonging to the same family are fennel, parsley, carrot, angelica, anise, celery, chervil, coriander, cumin, dill, and parsnip, just to name a few.

I have never used this oil in my practice because it doesn’t have many traditional uses in Aromatherapy and other more common oils are usually used for therapeutic value, like fennel. I couldn’t find a typical analysis, which gives the breakdown of chemical constituents in an oil, but I have found some basic information naming the major active ingredients.

Carvone - pic via www.scienceforums.net

Carvone – pic via http://www.scienceforums.net

According to Wikipedia:

“The fruits, usually used whole, have a pungent, anise-like flavor and aroma that comes from essential oils, mostly carvone and limonene.[10] Anethole, generally regarded as a minor product in the essential oil of this species, has also been found to be a major component.”

 

And from a paper 1994 UPDATE ON ESSENTIAL OILS IN SASKATCHEWAN SPICE CROPS by F. Sosulsk$, A.E. Slinkard and G. Arganosa:

“Carvone contributes the typical aroma of caraway seed and the carvone to limonene ratio in the essential oil should be 60:40”

 

Limonene pic via dennou-k.gaia.h.kyoto-u.ac.jp

Limonene

It is important to note that even when we have a chemical breakdown of an oil, we must consider it as a whole and remember the old adage “the whole is greater than the sum of it’s parts”. This means we can expect an oil to behave in a certain way when we find out what molecules it contains, but there will also be a unique signature that lends itself to other properties too.

Caraway essential oil could be used for digestion, as for fennel and aniseed. Regulating menses and attendant pain could also be helped by caraway oil, but I would probably just stick with fennel. In these instances I would dilute a drop or two in some carrier oil and rub all over the stomach and lower back. I would also use caraway for coughs and lung problems (especially catarrh) in a steam inhalation

 

Caraway seeds - they look like fennel seeds don'y they? pic via bhleurope.blogspot.com

Caraway seeds – they look like fennel seeds don’t they? pic via bhleurope.blogspot.com

According to Aromatherapist Danielle Ryman, fossilized caraway seeds were found in Neolithic dwellings in Switzerland, and in Mesolithic sites, which means that it was in use up to 8,000 years ago. She also says the Ancient Egyptians used the spice in religious rituals, (like many aromatic plants and flowers) and in cooking to make foods like bread and onions more digestible.

So it seems the modest caraway seed has similar properties to other Umbellifrae seeds and you can check out my article Star Anise, Aniseed and Fennel Essential Oils – What’s the Difference? to understand more about those oils -their similarities and differences.

The Divine Scent of Roman Chamomile Essential Oil

Anthemis nobilis - a classic illustation from Kohler's Medicial Pflanzen

Anthemis nobilis – a classic illustration from Kohler’s Medicinal Pflanzen

I have brushed over the chamomiles previously but would love to go into more detail about Roman chamomile. You can check out my previous blog Softly and Gently with the Chamomiles, but lets go into the world of this special, petit fluer in this article.

As with many plants this chamomile has a couple of botanical names – Anthemis nobilis or Chamaemelum nobile. Either way you can pick up that it is considered a nobile plant – distinguished by rank and manner. It is part of the Asteracae family (daisies) and the genus Chamaemelum. I’ve always loved daisies because they are so sweet, simple and pretty. This chamomile also has a very pretty scent and the essential oil is magnificent! For a small flower the scent is BIG!

This scent greatly differs from the other chamomile used in Aromatherapy – German chamomile – which is much darker in colour, darker and heavier in scent too. Our beautiful little “Roman” daisy will appeal to everyone from kids to the elderly, and even our pets.

Chamomile - sweet flower, sweet scent

Chamomile – sweet flower, sweet scent

It’s hard to tell the chamomiles apart as a flower but the German chamomile tends to have a more prominent pointed centre with leaves pointing downward, whereas the Roman chamomile flower is generally more balanced and larger, with a flat centre and daisy-like leaves. This is a generalisation and I’m sure the gardeners out there will have something to say about that!

In Aromatherapy today Roman chamomile is used;

* for stomach cramps as it is a great anti-spasmodic

* as a stomach calming oil in general

* as a calming oil in all respects – both physically and mentally

* as a soothing tonic to overwrought emotions

* as a calming oil for children

* for headaches

* for period pain

* for any kind of cramping whether it be in the body, the emotions, the mind or the energetic body

* in body oil blends and treatments for red, inflamed skin

Roman chamomile - pic via 3morganic.com

Roman chamomile – pic via 3morganic.com

I find it difficult to describe scent but I would say that this oil is sweet and intoxicating, with honey-like tones. This is a description from Wikipedia –

“The word chamomile, and the genus name Chamaemelum come from the Greek χαμαίμηλον (chamaimēlon), “earth-apple”, from χαμαί (chamai), “on the ground” + μήλον (mēlon), “apple”, so-called because of the apple-like scent of the plant. “

I suppose it has an apple-like scent but at least this gives you an idea and also indicates how long this plant has been around.

According to chamomile.co.uk/history.htm

“Chamomile was known to the Romans and used for incense and in beverages. Ironically, the name ‘Roman Chamomile’ by which it is sometimes known, does not stem from this time, but from a rather arbitary naming of the herb in the 19th century by a plant collector who happened to find some growing in the Colleseum in Rome!”

 

This site also refers to the use of chamomile in Egypt for treatment of fever but as we know it was various monasteries throughout Europe who consolidated the use of many herbs in the Middle Ages and who’s recipes still exist today in alcoholic beverages and perfumes.

Old medicine = good medicine!

Stay tuned for some recipes with this stunning essential oil which is more commonly retailed in a 3% blend in jojoba. This way we can use it straight from the bottle and it makes a wonderful perfume on it’s own. Fore more info on 3% blends check out my story here.

copyright suzanne

 

 

 

In Case of Indecision – Use Lavender

Fields of lavender never cease to amaze me!

Fields of lavender never cease to amaze me!

There are many subtleties in in Aromatherapy and while quite a few essential oils share similar properties, it’s the little nuances that separate them. Scent, of course, is one of them and then there’s the complex arrangement of molecules that we never really see or feel but that represent information that we absorb. We then translate that information into meaningful data that our brain and body can use on a physical level. Then there is all the energetic and metaphysical changes we can experience when using essential oils.

Lavender is unassuming yet powerful - pic via fanpop.com

Lavender is unassuming yet powerful – pic via fanpop.com

I love lavender and would use it in any circumstance. Really, how can you go wrong with a drop of lavender? According to it’s properties it probably isn’t good for someone with low blood pressure – but if someone fainted in front of me due to low blood pressure, and all I had was a bottle of lavender I would not hesitate to wave the open bottle under their nose. It would not do any harm. It may help greatly!

Lavender cupcakes! -pic via jessienextdoor.com

Lavender cupcakes! -pic via jessienextdoor.com

I have written about lavender before (see my article Lavender is the “Little Black Dress” of the Oil Wardrobe) and in the next few weeks I intend to go into more detail about the different kinds of lavender oil you can buy, but today I feel like I need the colour as much as the scent so this is my pictorial ode to the most magnificent of healing plants, lavender.

Lavender in my neighbourhood. Loves the sun and grows all over the world

Lavender in my neighbourhood. Loves the sun and grows all over the world

Open the bottle of lavender oil and have a huge whiff to help feel grounded and emotionally supported  by life.

Lavender has been revered for thousands of years as a healing plant

Lavender has been revered for thousands of years as a healing plant

A drop on your pillow may help with getting to sleep.

Lavender will always be stylish!

Lavender will always be stylish!

A drop or two on a steam inhalation can help a headache and help you de-stress!

French lavender fields create a colourful landscape with their colour AND scent!

French lavender fields create a colourful landscape with their colour AND scent!

A drop on a bandaid can help cuts, grazes and burns heal faster and reduce swelling and pain.

Even the colour of lavender is healing!

Even the colour of lavender is healing!

If you are in doubt about what essential oil to use, you should be ok with a little lavender

copyright suzanne

 

 

 

 

10 Recipes with Clary Sage Essential Oil – Salvia sclarea

Please check out my new book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Amazon USA      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as a Kindle and Paperback


10 Recipes with Clary Sage Essential Oil – Salvia sclarea

10!

10!

I tend not to use Clary sage very often but maybe that’s just a phase I’m going through – I used it frequently when I was first introduced to essential oils. It belongs to the Lamiacae family and the genus Salvia. It is a strong sweet, heady oil with an herbaceous note. Clary sage is an expansive oil I consider it to be a very spiritual oil, as it relates well to the crown and third eye chakras. It seems to have the ability to open our conscious minds, and stimulate the subconscious to stir. I use Clary sage as a stimulus for the dream dimension – daydreams and night-time dreams, which can help shape our lives.

Looking back over the centuries it has been employed to help people over come depression and melancholy. Clary sage is an inspiring oil and has been to referred to as an  oil of euphoria. We can connect to the creativity of the universe too when we encounter Clary sage.

The essential oil is made from the flowering tops and the foliage

The essential oil is made from the flowering tops and the foliage

It is also powerful as an analgesic particularly in regards to period pain and I’ve used this oil with pregnant clients in preparation for labour and even in oil blends in a birthing suite. It also works well for symptoms of menopause.

Let’s check out some recipes –

1. Nourishing Body Oil Blend

For a coat of your body use 3 teaspoons of carrier oil in a little dish and, add 7 – 8 drops of essential oil.

***** Always put the drops of essential oil into the bottle or dish first, then add the carrier oil. It gives the scents time to create a synergistic fusion.

For a 50ml bottle of oil add 25 drops and see my articles “Ratios for Blending Essential Oils – A Reminder of the Basics” and  “Aromatherapy – It’s Easy as 1 2 3”

“I’m Ready for You Baby”

For the birthing suite or getting prepared for labour –

Clary Sage       3 drops

Jasmine 3%   10 drops * see my article for more info on 3% blends in jojoba

——————————————————————————————————————

“Untangle”

When you have pain and can’t relax –

Clary Sage      2 drops

Peppermint     2 drops

Lavender        3 drops

——————————————————————————————————————

Take a huge whiff to change your focus in seconds

Take a huge whiff to change your focus in seconds

2. Open The Bottle and Take a Huge Whiff

Take a GENTLE whiff of this oil to open your consciousness or when you can’t see past the little nitty-gritty parts of your day.

——————————————————————————————————————

A personal mist is easy to make! pic via ebay.com.au

A personal mist is easy to make! pic via ebay.com.au

3. Personal Aura Cleansing Mist

In a 50ml mist bottle filled with water add 25 drops of oil

(depending on the packaging you have, you may need to use a little alcohol -like vodka- at the bottom of your bottle first, so the oils disperse into smaller drops to prevent clogging the atomiser top. I’ve found sometimes it works just with water, and sometimes it doesn’t – very annoying!)

“Universal Consciousness”

Expand beyond your self-imposed limitations –

Clary sage          6 drops

Mandarin           12 drops

Rose Geranium   6 drops

Cinnamon           3 drops

——————————————————————————————————————

“I Just Love Everything Right Now”

To help convince yourself life isn’t so bad when you are having a challenging day –

Clary Sage          7 drops

Frankincense   10 drops

Orange                8 drops

——————————————————————————————————————

“I Can Dream”

Dream big – it pays off –

Clary Sage                     5 drops

Cedarwood Virginian      8 drops

Petitgrain                      12 drops

—————————————————————————————————————–

Anoint yourself with pure essential oil blends

Anoint yourself with pure essential oil blends

4. Pure Pulse Point Perfume

In a little dish mix these oils and anoint your pulse points or chakras – 3 drops of essential oils and dilute with a few drops of carrier oil – always patch test first!

“Oh Wow I Created That”

Feel supported by the universe –

Clary Sage                   1 drop

Sandalwood Australian 1 drop

Lime                             1 drop

——————————————————————————————————————

“It’s Been A Long Day”

Anoint yourself after a long day at work to settle in and relax –

Clary Sage    1 drop

Lavender      1 drop

Marjoram      1 drop

—————————————————————————————————————–

“I’m Over These Hot Flushes”

Clary works well for menopause symptoms too –

Clary sage    1 drop

Fennel          1 drop

Palmarosa    1 drop

——————————————————————————————————————-

“Infinite”

You are……..

Clary Sage     1 drop

Myrrh             1 drop

Bergamot      1 drop

——————————————————————————————————————-

Happy blending and remember to use your intention when you are creating your formulas.See my article about intention.

copyright suzannerbanks 2013