Happy Fall everyone! Before kids, this was my favorite time of year! Strolling around outdoors in the brisk air and the sun shining through the color changing leaves. Drinking a warm beverage while reading a book by fire light. Fashionable clothing choices that cover all my lumps and bumps (One of my favorite parts) while enjoying the fall festivities such as pumpkin patches and harvest festivals.
Then Came Children….
The germ factories, evidence of snotty noses on the shoulder of my shirt, the back of the couch or the coffee table. Coughing on the counter, toys and in my face. Vomit EVERYWHERE! So back to the research I go. We have had illness after illness in our home and I start to second guess myself.
I went back to the database and started coming through mountains of truths, partial truths and flat out lies about my new love of essential oils. Testimonials not supported, I am glad the worked for you, but what about everyone else? Testimonials about the danger and ineffectiveness of oils, I am going to need to see your research too! Half-Truths about in vitro studies on cells in a lab, what about the use in REAL LIFE?
The Truth of the matter is, oils are still new! Natural health has been used since the beginning of time, but only since late 80’s have they really been looked at and researched for their true effectiveness vs the old wives tale.
Yes, I know they work, but I want to know WHY and HOW and WHEN, and so do hospitals, schools and skeptics. First rule of medicine, DO NO HARM! So even though we know they work in certain circumstances, there is still a lot we don’t know. Unfortunately, we live in a litigious society. Make one false claim or one well meaning mistake and life as you know it is over. So, it is our job as oil lovers to be non biased. Look at the research, check our sources, advocate for better research studies on humans, while still doing what is best for our families.
People are so ready to cut down on oils and call out all their risks. Do not be BLIND, the risks and side effects and dangers of synthetic products are PROVEN to be dangerous. They do not have to disclose their full ingredients, processes or research. They do NOT have to be shown effective or safe, yet people still use them. The power of big marketing, politics and money is very strong.
SAFE and EFFECTIVE USE
The Franklin Institute did a great non biased breakdown of essential oil use in schools. They have how not to and how to use them safely with the current research as well as understanding that there is research lacking and what needs to be studied in the future.
From the Franklin Institute article :
“Essential oils do not have to be excluded from the classroom entirely. When used appropriately, there are many useful applications of essential oils in the classroom which meet the criteria of efficacy, safety, and ethical practice. Some of these applications include:
- Cleaning Products: Essential oils can be used as alternatives to harsh bleaches and other potentially harmful cleaning products. For this application, follow usual guidelines for cleaning products. For example, use these items when children are out of the classroom, ensure ample ventilation, and store the products away from children.
- Air Fresheners: Under the guidance of a professional aromatherapist, essential oils can be used as alternatives to plug-in air fresheners and floral bouquets to address foul odors in the air. This application would exclude large doses and medicinal intent.
- Personal inhalers. Just as a parent may send a dietary supplement or topical herbal product to school with permission for administration or self-administration, children may opt to use personal inhalers for benefits which do not affect his or her classmates. A professional aromatherapist can develop and formulate products for individual use. Environmental health. Hand sanitizers and other personal care products may also be used”
I really like that this study shows a practical use of oils and how they are effective in killing the flu virus in HVAC systems!
DIY RECIPE : DIFFUSE OR SPRAY
- 8 oz or 16 oz Glass Spray Bottle
- ½ cup water
- 8 drops of Eucalyptus
- 8 drops of Tea Tree
- 5 drops of Lemon
Combine water and essential oils in glass container. Shake vigorously before use. Spray on carpet, furniture and in the air. Do not spray on skin.
Here is a systematic compilation of effectiveness of essential oils for cleaning. “Essential oils contain a wide variety of secondary metabolites that are capable of inhibiting or slowing the growth of bacteria, yeasts and molds. Essential oils and their components have activity against a variety of targets, particularly the membrane and cytoplasm, and in some cases, they completely change the morphology of the cells”
The research needs to be more thorough but I am convinced that Essential oils are the most safe and effective option for keeping our house hold clean and healthy. Have questions? Ask me! There is a lot of evidence that is not included for pure fact that it is boring and overwhelming! But I have more if you need it!
Lastly, please please make sure that no matter what brand of essential oils you are using they are PURE!!!! According to the university of Minnesota these are the qualities to look for.
- Is the Latin name of the plant provided so that you are sure you are getting the right essential oil? For example, there are several species of lavender.
- Is the name of the country in which the plants were grown provided? A consumer would not be expected to differentiate oils from different countries, but this information is important to aromatherapists because quality can vary by country. This is an indication that the company is marketing to knowledgeable parties as well as general consumers.
- Is there a statement about purity? You should be informed if it is not 100% essential oil (meaning, it has been altered or mixed with something else).
- Is the cost comparable in comparison with other brands of the same essential oil? If it’s really cheap, it probably isn’t the real thing.
- Does it smell as you expect it to smell?
- Is there information about organic growing or wildcrafting (gathering wild plants)? Most essential oils sold in the U.S. are not certified as to their organic status, but some European brands are.”