This is a blog with a mission to educate you on how to achieve optimal health without going broke. Turn your health around with the help of the Paleo Diet, fitness, and Essential Oils.
Delayed- Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) and Essential Oils

Delayed- Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) and Essential Oils


It was thought among experts that DOMS was caused by the lactic acid, the by-product of anaerobic metabolism (glycosis). However, it is now believed that the free radicals hydroperoxides, ammonia, and hydroxyl radicals cause hydroxyproline damage. Hydroxyproline can be found in the connective tissue.  It is a constituent of the collagen.

Any movement that is new can cause tearing and swelling that leads to soreness  However, it is mostly the eccentric muscle contractions that lead to DOMS. Eccentric muscle contractions are movements that cause the muscles to forcefully contract while it lengthens. Going down the stairs, lowering weights, running downhill, and the downward movements of squats and push ups.

Stretching, hydration, pre-workout warm up, and massage are some things that may reduce DOMS. It is wise to add antioxidants before and after training to minimize or reduce occurrence of DOMS. Remember, higher intensity training increases the risk of DOMS. Some antioxidants to consider are Pantothenic Acid, niacin, vitamin C & E, beta-carotene, COQ10, n-acetyl cysteine, zinc, selenium, grape seed extract and L-Glutathione. Rehydration drinks with electrolytes, carbohydrates and ascorbates should also be consumed. 

 Essential oils have a high antioxidant value in addition to the other healing properties.

Here are some blends to try for over exercised muscles.
Hot Bath
Marjoram 3 drops
Lemon 2 drops
Follow with the massage oil below


Massage Oil for Over-Exercised Muscles
Eucalyptus 5 drops
Peppermint 5 drops
Ginger 5 drops
Dilute in 1 tablespoon vegetable oil.

More Blends:
Sore Muscle Blend
Juniper 8 drops
Wintergreen or Birch 10 drops
Lemon 8 drops
Rosemary cineol 4 drops
Lavender 8 drops

Sore Muscle Blend No.2
Cypress 9 drops
Rosemary cineol 4 drops
Lavender 8 drops
Elemi 2 drops
Valerian 2 drops

Other essential oils that may be useful are nutmeg, black pepper, basil, spruce, Roman Chamomile, peppermint. 

Don't forget to check out the safety page and double check with your physician if you have any medical problems.





Thanks for visiting!

 




Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Tips ~ Enjoy Essential Oil Aromas from Morning to Evening

Tips ~ Enjoy Essential Oil Aromas from Morning to Evening

Here are some ideas on how you can add aroma throughout the day to fully enjoy your day.

When you wake up



For an invigorating kick in the morning, use a blend of peppermint and mandarin (or tangerine or grapefruit. Diffuse or add to shampoo, lotion or shower gel. You can also add a couple of drops to a wash cloth and use in the shower. Peppermint can irritate the skin so dilute well and mandarin is phototoxic so don't apply to skin before sun exposure.


When you get to work


Once you get to work in can be a good idea to activate the brain. Rosemary is often called the ginko biloba of the west.  Rosemary has historically been known to influence memory and efficiency. Add it to a diffuser, apply a couple of drops on a tissue and inhale, inhale straight from the bottle, or mix with massage oil and add to a roll-on bottle. Make sure you ask your co-workers before you add any oils to a diffuser. Avoid rosemary if you have high blood pressure, asthma or epilepsy.


After lunch


Many feel tired after lunch, perhaps even little bloated, especially if the lunch was ingested too quickly. Basil, Ocimum basilicum, is an antispasmodic and it is also known as the decision maker. According to the Essential Oils Integrative Medical Guide, for mental fatigue - inhale basil first, and then apply to the crown of the head, the forehead, the heart and the navel.
Dilute basil well before you apply to the skin and consult a health care practitioner if you suffer from high blood pressure. It should be used with caution in high blood pressure.


After work


Many are tired after work. Diffusing lavender is said to help you let go of things that happened at work or during the day. Lavender is cleansing and balancing. Bergamot is another useful oil which is soothing and healing.


When you want to sleep



Marjoram and orange are said to influence the central nervous system so psychological and physiological cramps are relaxed.  These oils help tense muscles and thoughts to relax. Avoid marjoram if you have asthma and low blood pressure.


When you want to add some romance



Ylang ylang, jasmine and sandalwood can be very useful if your rather snuggle with your partner than go to sleep.

These are just some ideas. Be creative how you use your oils throughout the day, I like to add a roll on top to my bottles, mix my own blends and add to a roll on bottle and bring with me in my purse when I leave my house.

 Other posts of interest:

Do You have a Hard Time at Work?






Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil.


Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. AlsoRead this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 

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Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.









Photo credit #1, #2
Photo credit #3
Photo credit #4
Photo credit #5
Photo credit #6

Source:

Gary Young, ND (2006). Essential Oils, Integrative Medical Guide. Essential Science Publishing
Hälsa. Nr 10. Oktober 2003

This post is linked to:
Wildcrafting Wednesday
Essential Oils & The Nervous System

Essential Oils & The Nervous System


The nervous system is the body's communication network and control center. The nervous system senses changes inside and outside the body and interpretes these. It also initiates actions such as glandular secretions or muscular contractions as a response to what the nervous system interprets.

It is important to acknowledge the connection between the physical and psychological aspects of our well being. The nervous system is part of the physical make up but the psychological process also takes place in the nervous system. When there's a disease on the physical level it will affect the psychological and when there's a disease on the psychological level it will affect the physical.

Aromatherapy is unique, and Battaglia says no other holistic modality can offer such a multidimensional approach to dealing with conditions associated with the nervous system. The aromatherapy massage is very nurturing and therapeutic, the essential oils have pharmacological activity, the olfaction has powerful influence of ANS memory and emotions, and there's is a caring relationship between the therapist and the client.

According to Battaglia, the following properties of essential oils are useful when dealing with conditions associated with the nervous system:

Antidepressants
Battaglia says the following essential oils can be used to alleviate depression:
~ Sandalwood, ylang ylang, neroli, jasmine, geranium, lemon, lavender, rose otto and absolute, bergamot, basil and clary sage.

Soporifics
Battaglia says sweet marjoram, lavender, and valerian can be used to induce sleep.

Nervines
There are two types of nervines - sedative and stimulant nervines. Nervines strengthen and tone the nerves.

According to Battaglia, the stimulant nervines strengthen the nervous system and are useful in stress, shock or nervous debility. He says the following oils are useful nervines:
~ Vetiver, clary sage, basil, lemongrass, peppermint, rosemary, angelica root and juniper berry.

Battaglia says relaxant nervines can help alleviate tension and stress. He says some excellent nervines are:
~ Bergamot, Roman chamomile, sweet marjoram, valerian, sandalwood, neroli and lavender.

Analgesics
According to Battaglia, analgesic can be used for migraines and headaches. He says the following oils are analagesics:
~ Eucalyptus, cajuput, peppermint, sweet marjoram, spike lavender, lavender, thyme and rosemary.

Antispasmodics
According to Battaglia, antispasmodics help prevent or alleviate spasms or convulsions, and may be beneficial for treating migraines, headaches and muscular spasms caused by nervous tension. Battaglia says the following oils are antispasmodics:
~ Clary sage, Roman chamomile, yarrow, sweet marjoram and lavender.


Behavior and attitude can influence our resistance to disease and positive imagery and meditation have been used in cancer treatments for years. It is also important to consider eating a well balance diet, get enough rest and sleep, use relaxation techniques and consider other natural remedies such as flower essences and herbs.



Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil.


Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. AlsoRead this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 

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Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.








Source:
Salvatore Battaglia (1995). The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion Pty Ltd

This post is linked to:
Wildcrafting Wednesday

Essential Oils & The Lymphatic System

Essential Oils & The Lymphatic System



According to Battaglia, aromatherapy can help with some of the problems associated with the lymphatic system. Essential oils with diuretic, alterative, circulatory stimulant, bactericidal, antifungal and antiviral properties are most suitable.

What is the lymphatic system?
The lymphatic system is a network of superficial and deep vessels and can be found in all parts of the body except for the spinal column, brain, bone marrow and cartilage. The lymph capillaries, vessels, and and larger ducts transport the lymph and the lymph nodes are the filtering devices. The thymus, tonsils and the spleen are lymphatic organs and the breasts are mostly made up of lymphatic vessels and glands.

What's the function of the lymphatic system?
The lymphatic system has three major functions in the body:

  • aid in providing immunological defenses
  • draining excess fluids from the body cells
  • absorbing and distributing fat soluble nutrients.

When it is not working well
Sometimes our lymphatic system is not working well and this condition is called congestion. The lymph is filled with waste products that has passed through the lymph nodes. It is the liver's responsibility to neutralize and eliminate a large number of toxins. Unfortunately, when the liver and the lymph nodes are unable to cope with the toxins, the toxins can leak through the mucous membranes and other emergency elimination sites. This leaking is commonly known as catarrh or inflammation of the mucous membranes.

Vital to life
Just because the lymph system is like a sewage system doesn't mean it is not vital to life, you see, when this system fails to function properly, excess toxins and fluid will build up in the body causing pain, infection, loss of energy and various diseases.

Okay, so let's talk about the essential oils.

Diuretics
According to Battaglia, diuretic essential oils are often used in conditions where water is retained in the body. Battaglia says the following oils have diuretic properties, which means they accelerate the detoxification process by stimulating kidneys.

~Grapefruit, fennel, lemon, juniper, cypress, tangerine, orange, and mandarin. Caution, excessive use of juniper has been known to cause kidney irritation.

Increasing leucocytosis
According to Battaglia, the following oils will increase the body's ability to make white blood cells:
~Lavender, rosemary, lemon, thyme and tea tree.

Blood cleansers, alteratives, detoxifiers or depuratives
According to Battaglia, most essential oils will stimulate phagocytosis, which means the ability of the white blood cells to ingest and clean up toxins and microbes. Battaglia refers to Mills, who says that by improving the functions of the eliminatory channels in the body the tissues may be cleansed. The remedies capable of doing so are referred to as blood cleansers, alteratives  or depuratives. Battaglia lists the following oils as being alteratives, depuratives, blood cleanser or detoxifiers:
~ German and Roman Chamomile, sweet fennel, rosemary, lemon, lavender, geranium, juniper and angelica.

Stimulating lymph and tissue fluid circulation
Battaglia says essential oils such as grapefruit, juniper berry, orange, cold pressed lime, rosemary, peppermint and tangerine will stimulate the tissue and lymph fluid circulation.

Anti-fungal, antiviral and bactericidal
According to Battaglia, Jean Valnet lists these oils as being very useful:
~ Clove, niaouli, eucalyptus, thyme, lemon, cinnamon, sandalwood, lavender, peppermint and German chamomile as being very useful.

Circulatory stimulants
By stimulating the circulatory system you stimulate the flow of lymph. Battaglia says black pepper, rosemary or ginger may be used in a lymphatic massage blend.

The Essential Oils Desk Reference also lists myrtle, lemongrass and hyssop as essential oils that aid in detoxifying and stimulating the lymphatic system. The Reference Guide also lists ledum, Ledum groenlandicum, as being useful for inflamed lymph nodes. 



Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil.


Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. AlsoRead this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 

Wildcrafting Wednesday Featured Blogger Award
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Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.








Source:
Connie and Alan Higley, (Twelfth Edition, revised 2010). Reference Guide for Essential Oils. Abundant Health
The Essential Oils Desk Reference. (Fifth edition 2011). Life Science Publishing
Salvatore Battaglia (1995). The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion Pty Ltd


This post is linked to:
Wildcrafting Wednesday






Coipaba (Copal) ~ Copaifera reticulata

Coipaba (Copal) ~ Copaifera reticulata


Coipaba, Copaifera reticulata/langsdorfii originates in Brazil and it is part of the Caesalpiniaceae family. Coipaba is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. "Copal" is derived from the Spanish word for incense, copelli, and any number of resinous gums or exudates from threes in Malaysia and South America are known as "Copal". According to the Essential Oils Desk Reference, the Brazilian copaiba has the most published research on its anti-inflammatory effects.

Historical Uses
According to the Essential Oils Desk Reference, the healers in the Amazon use resin for all kinds of pain and inflammatory disorders. In Peru 2-3 drops of resin is mixed with honey and used as remedy for sore throat. In the Brazilian and Peruvian herbal medicine system it is listed as and antiseptic and anti-inflammatory for the urinary tract, and it is used in the treatment of bronchitis, tetanus, and tuberculosis.

The Reference Guide states that copaiba has historically been used for stomach ulcers, tumors, incontinence, syphilis, bleeding, hemorrhages and pleurisy. According to the guide, it has been verified by modern research.

Fragrance Influences
The Reference Guide for Essential Oils states that the aroma of copaiba lifts depression and helps elevate mood as well as to help combat stress problems, nervous tension and anxiety. 

Properties
Coipaba has antiseptic, anti-inflammatory (powerful), mycolytic and antiulcer  properties according to the Essential Oils Desk Reference. The Reference Guide for Essential Oils also mentions that copaiba is a stimulant for the circulatory and the pulmonary system.

EODR states that copaiba can be used for pain relief since it is a strong anti-inflammatory and it can also be used for insect bites, arthritis, skin disorder, rheumatism, stomach distress, sore throat and urinary disorders. 
The Reference Guide for Essential Oils says that it may also help with constipation, edema, dyspepsia, flu, flatulence, bacterial infections, wounds, stiffness, colds and diarrhea.


Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil.


Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. AlsoRead this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 

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Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.









Source:

Connie and Alan Higley, (Twelfth Edition, revised 2010). Reference Guide for Essential Oils. Abundant Health
The Essential Oils Desk Reference. (Fifth edition 2011). Life Science Publishing
Steam Inhalation for Dry and Moist Cough

Steam Inhalation for Dry and Moist Cough


Here is a steam inhalation that works for both dry and moist coughs. 
Use a facial steamer or put hot water in a bowl of water, 
add 1 drop Cedarwood, 1 drop eucalyptus and 1 drop hyssop. 
Hold the head 8 inches from the bowl with a towel over head to form a tent, and inhale. You want to make sure that you inhale slowly and deeply with your eyes closed.

According to Valeri Cooksley, R.N, cypress, juniper, frankincense, lavender, myrrh, peppermint and sandalwood are other oils that are useful for coughs. 



Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil.


Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. AlsoRead this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 



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Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives.

Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.







Source:

Valeri Gennari Cooksley, R.N (2002). Aromatherapy: soothing remedies to restore, rejuvenate,and heal. Prentice Hall Press

This post is linked to:
Wildcrafting Wednesday

My Favorite Aromatherapy Books

My Favorite Aromatherapy Books

I get a lot questions from people asking me what my favorite aromatherapy books are. I've read quite a a lot of books throughout the years and some are better than others. Once you learn more about essential oils you realize that many books have a lot of the same information.

Here we go:


My absolute favorite book is The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy by Salvatore Battaglia. It was a required textbook in my 12 month aromatherapy education at the American College of Healthcare Sciences, and I'm pleased to see that they still use the book. This book has been a great help in my consulting and blogging. I also like it because Battaglia also addresses dietary and lifestyle changes for each health condition. I purchased the first edition through my college and I purchased the second edition in a health food store in Wales, UK. It is quite an expensive book and it cost $ 110.00 on Amazon but you can buy it from my college store for $ 90.75. I highly recommend this book and it has so much information in it that you really don't need many other books. This is what it says about it in the Apothecary Shoppe:

"An indispensable book for everyone who wants to be extensively familiarized in the art and science of Aromatherapy. The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy is written in a clear, concise and well-presented format, with the student, professional Aromatherapist, pharmacist, nurse, doctor and lay-person in mind. Information contained within the 467 pages is quickly accessed through two comprehensive indexes, 29 well-defined chapters, and an array of appendices. This is the most recent edition with five new chapters.
Over 90 Essential oils are covered in detail as well as detailed information on the treatment of a wide range of conditions. Also included is some of the latest research on the psychological effects of Essential Oils and the implications for present day Aromatherapy."
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Another favorite book of mine is Aromatherapy - Soothing Remedies to Restore, Rejuvenate, and Heal by Valeri Gennari Cooksley, R.N. I really enjoy this book, Cooksley shares some great recipes and information in this book and I've used it so much so the book has fallen apart. You can purchase this book used for about 12 dollars on Amazon or for $ 49.95 from Barnes and Nobles. This is what it says about the book on Amazon:
"Science has now confirmed what has been known since the time of the Caesars: essential oils have healing properties for a wide variety of physical and emotional conditions. In fact, essential oils have been considered among the most therapeutic and rejuvenating of all botanical extracts.
This step-by-step guide demystifies the herbal healing art, and provides all the tools and techniques necessary to prepare and use the curative power of essential oils to relieve illness and restore youth and vitality -- without the use of drugs or other invasive health treatments. Chapters cover how to buy and make essential oils; how to use them to attain ultimate calm and relaxation; soothing, proven treatments for more than 100 health conditions; dozens of special blends and recipes developed by the author for a variety of ills; true case studies of healing success; plus a complete reference to the more than 100 aromatics and blends and their healing abilities."
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I always enjoy Valeri Ann Worwood's books and most of her books are available on kindle. The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy was the first book I purchased and it is a great book to look up quick information. This is what Amazon says about this book:

"A necessary resource for anyone interested in alternative approaches to healing, this book contains more than 600 easy-to-follow recipes for essential oil treatments and aromatherapy."
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Aromatherapy for the Healthy Child is another book by Worwood and it is a must have book for parents. It is also available for kindle for only $ 9.99. This is what it says about this book on Amazon:
"This reference shows how essential oils can help parents raise healthier, happier children. Chapters cover every age from newborn to teen with aromatherapy remedies for typical problems--from diaper rash to bedwetting to asthma. The book features information for pregnant mothers and physically challenged children and appendices with reference charts, safety data, and supplier information. This is a valuable book for every concerned parent."
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The Fragrant Mind: Aromatherapy for the Personality, Mind, Mood and Emotion and Aromatherapy for the Soul: Healing the Spirit with Fragrance and Essential Oils  are two other books by Worwood that I own. 


This is what Amazon says about them:


"Written in an accessible style and aimed at aromatherapists, practitioners of alternative medicine, and anyone wishing to use aromatherapy to maintain a peaceful equilibrium or bring about positive change, this book concentrates on the mood-changing effects of natural oils. "A good addition to alternative medicine collections."--Library Journal.
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"Fragrances, with their intriguing ability to evoke emotions, memories, and visions, have played an important role in the world’s spiritual traditions since the dawn of time. Drawn from the essential oils of plants, they serve as an earthly connection with the Divine. In her fascinating book, renowned aromatherapist Valerie Ann Worwood breaks new ground with an in-depth study of the use of fragrance in spirituality. Drawing on the pioneering research of eminent scientists and the insights of leading spiritual teachers, she provides exhaustive guidelines detailing how fragrance can be used in many spiritual practices, from Shinto and Buddhism to Native American rites. Extensive charts, exercises, and formulas demonstrate the use of aroma in healing, prayer, and meditation and in conjunction with vibrational and energetic healing. Covering more than 70 essential oils, this extraordinary guide helps readers call upon the divine power of fragrance to enrich their own spiritual journeys."

I also like Kurt Schnaubelt's books but some of them may be little too intense for someone new at aromatherapy.












I also have many other books but the books mentioned above are the ones I like the most and are used very often. Do you have a favorite book that I didn't mention?

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Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.







This post is linked to:
Wildcrafting Wednesday

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