Alterative and Detoxifying Essential Oils

12:13 PM Posted by jo

With a new year and a new beginning it is a good idea to start off fresh and rid the body off toxins. Essential oils can be a great addition to herbal cleanses or used alone. They can for example be mixed with bath salts, or cold pressed vegetable oils for a great detoxifying bath.

Alteratives are remedies that cleanse and purify the blood, and they are also called detoxifiers or blood purifiers. They assist the body’s own eliminatory channels by stimulating the liver, lungs, kidneys, bowels, sweat glands, and the lymphatic system to excrete toxins.

Essential oils with lymphatic, diaphoretic, expectorant, diuretic, hepatic, laxative and emmenagogue properties are considered alteratives. **( Explanation at the end of the post)

Most commonly used essential oils with alteratives properties are angelica root, black pepper, carrot seed, cypress, everlasting, fennel, grapefruit, geranium, juniper, lemon, orange, peppermint and rosemary.
Some of my favorite alteratives are:

Cypress, (Cupressus sempervirens var. stricta) 

has a bitter, acidic, sharp, spicy and balsamic-woody top note. The middle note is balsamic-woody, sweet and spicy. The base note smells more like cypress with a forest scent and isnot as sweet. The aroma clears the head and is very relaxing.
Cypress was used by the Romans and the Greeks. Sempevirens means ever living, and the tree was dedicated to the gods of the underworld.

It has a calming, balancing, refreshing and clearing effect on the emotions. Cypress is useful in anger and will also restore calm. In France, Dr.Valnet used cypress for bronchitis and coughs at hospitals, and the cough was stopped by putting drops of cypress under the pillows. According to Battaglia, it also has astringent and vaso-constrictor properties, and may therefore be useful in circulatory problems.

Grapefruit, (Citrus paradisi ) 
has a sweet, fresh, intense citrus and fruity top note. It is a clean and refreshing smell. The middle note is softer and milder with sweet and pleasant orange-citrus aroma with some bitterness and slightly earthy tone. The base not has the same characteristic scent but is a lot weaker. Grapefruit is uplifting and positive, and it is a very energizing and reviving scent.
Grapefruit was known as the Shaddock fruit and was named after the travel adventures of Captain Shaddock. He brought seeds from China to the West Indies.

Grapefruit has a very uplifting, reviving, and energizing effect on the mood. It has historically been a good choice when feeling stressed, depressed, or suffering from nervous exhaustion. It is very balancing. 

According to Battaglia, due to its diuretic and detoxifying properties, grapefruit may be useful in cellulites. 

Lemon, (Citrus limonum) 

has a sharp, clean and refreshing aroma. It smells like the zest of the fruit. The aroma is very relaxing, but at the same time it feels like it clears the mind and sharpens the senses. It is obvious it is a top note because the scent doesn’t last long.

Lemon trees originate in northern India and Burma. It came to Europe first in the 12th century. Columbus brought lemon and orange seeds to Spain in 1493, and Spain became one of the largest producers of lemon. Already in 1692 expressed and distilled lemon oil could be bought in Paris.

Lemon increases the ability to concentrate. It lifts the spirit and clears the mind. It is also a powerful antibacterial. According to Battaglia, l
emon is said to stimulate the action of the white blood corpuscles, and he says it also counteracts the acidity in the body. He also says it has a tonic effect on the circulatory system. It is well known for its detoxifying and astringent properties.


Lymphatic - Assist the tissue cleansing action of the lymphatic system. 

Diaphoretic - Promoting sweating, assisting the excretory functions of the skin. 

Expectorant - Promoting expulsion of mucus, assisting the respiratory system. 

Diuretic - Promoting urination, assisting excretory functions of the kidneys. 

Hepatic - Enhancing liver functions, assisting the liver's detoxifying functions. 

Laxative - Promoting bowel movements, assisting excretory functions of the large intestines. 
Emmenagogue - Promoting menstruation, assisting in the elimination of menstrual blood. 

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

  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Technorati
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • Google
  • Reddit
  • Sphinn
  • Propeller
  • Slashdot
  • Netvibes