Technically speaking, essential oils are considered "essential" because the oil produced is the "essential" volatile oil extracted from the plant - basically the vital life force of the plant or "spirit" of the plant or chemical compound that produces its aroma.
In practice, one only has to inhale an essential oil once to understand the depths of what makes essential oils truly so essential.
WHAT IS AN ESSENTIAL OIL?
Essential oils are highly concentrated, volatile extracts of a plant's roots, leaves, flowers, seeds and/or fruit.
The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy defines an essential oil as follows:
"Essential Oil is a product made by distillation with either water or steam or by mechanical processing of citrus rinds or by dry distillation of natural materials. Following the distillation, the essential oil is physically separated from the water phase."
HOW ARE ESSENTIAL OILS USED?
Essential oils can be diffused in the air via steam, vaporization or simply exposure to air. Once essential oils go airborne, our nose detects the aromatic molecules and instantly sends a message to our brain via the olfactory system.
This system has been scientifically proven to connect to our emotions, creating a physical response. Essential oils, therefore, have the ability to alter our state of mind via scent alone. Powerful!
Via the Skin
Essential oils are also applied to the skin and thus enter into our circulatory system bringing the essential life force of the plant to all areas of our body. Research has proven how inflammation and pain can be subdued using this form of application.
While providing temporary relief from pain, essential oils also assist the body in healing the root cause of the pain simply because of their potent therapeutic attributes. Powerful!
HOW POWERFUL CAN 1 DROP OF ESSENTIAL OIL BE?
Essential oils are the most concentrated and potent of all botanical extracts. Because of the extraction process, essential oils can be 70 to 100 times stronger than the actual plant.
Did you know that it takes 5,000 pounds of rose petals to make one pound of essential oil!
One drop of peppermint essential oil is equivalent to drinking 70 cups of tea made from the plant leaf.
WHAT CAN ESSENTIAL OILS DO?
Essential oils promote emotional, physical and spiritual well-being. Some are used to calm the mind and relieve stress. Others help to improve circulation, reduce inflammation and promote collagen production. Others encourage an overall sense of well-being with a touch of spiritual awareness.
A recent study showed that children exposed to lavender and orange essential oils during a dentist visit experienced lower stress and anxiety than children not exposed to the oils.
WHAT MAKES ESSENTIAL OILS SO ESSENTIAL?
Maybe essential oils are so essential because they are the life force of a plant inside a convenient glass bottle. Maybe it's because they provide us with the necessary healing energy we need to evolve into better people.
Maybe it's because they contain constituents known to promote physical well-being. Or maybe it's just because they smell amazing and can transform our whole day. Who knows. You decide.
Nefertem - The Original Holistic Skincare Company