I have asked Abbie to share with us today, because she is extremely knowledgeable in the area of essential oils (which is a topic I am very interested in). I have asked her to be on hand for a follow up to this post, so if you have any essential oils questions, please post them for Abbie in the comments (or over at her blog).
Also, Abbie will be hosting an essential oils class tomorrow at 1:00 PM CST! You can catch the class at ustream.tv/abbiesoils.
I LOVE essential oils! A friend introduced me to high quality essential oils a little over a year ago and I have become more excited the more I study and learn about them! I am delighted that Sarah as given me permission to take over her blog to share a little with you and answer any questions you may have.
What is an essential oil?
Essential oils are defined as “aromatic volatile liquids distilled from shrubs, flowers, trees, roots, bushes, and seeds.”* They are highly concentrated and much more potent than herbs; for example, 1 drop of peppermint oil is equal to 28 cups of peppermint tea. Depending on the type of oil, an entire plant may only produce one drop of oil. These are different from fatty oils such as olive oil, vegetable oil, etc. They do not clog pores nor are they greasy. Fatty oils are often used to dilute certain essential oils such as oregano, clove, cinnamon, peppermint, etc.
What does the Bible say about essential oils?
One of the main reasons that I love to study and share about essential oils is that they were specifically given by God for healing and are mentioned throughout the Scriptures. Not counting olive oil, there are an estimated 1,031 references in the Bible to essential oils, the plants they are taken from and how they were used. I used to wonder about this verse and our application of it, “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:”-James 5:14 I would watch as the elders in the church would gather around a sick person, pray over them and put a little dab of cooking oil on their head. It never made any sense to me until I learned about essential oils. I think that early church Christians relied on prayer, but also knew how to use essential oils either alone or mixed with olive oil as a part of their every day lives.
What are essential oils used for?
Essential oils are used to heal everything from the common cold to cancer. There are hundreds of different essential oils available. Lavender and peppermint are two oils that I try to have with me all the time because they can be used for so many different things. About a year ago, I was severely burned on my arm, badly enough that I should have a scar today. I applied lavender oil daily for several weeks and healed completely! Lavender is known for its ability to regenerate skin and prevent scarring along with a host of other things including menstrual problems/PMS, skin conditions, (eczema, acne, scarring, stretch marks) insomnia and much more. Peppermint is great for weight loss, increased energy, headaches, nausea, pain relief and much more.
How to use essential oils
Many essential oils can be applied “NEAT” which means without dilution. With most oils it is suggested that they be diluted with a non-essential oil such as olive oil, coconut oil, or Young Living has a blend of coconut and other oils called “V-6”. Before you use an essential oil, you’ll want to look on the bottle for the suggested ratio of fatty oil to essential oil. Some oils, such as clove, are potent enough to burn the skin. Essential oils can be taken internally, applied directly to problem areas on the skin, on the soles of the feet, (the largest pores in our bodies are on the bottoms of our feet, so this allows for quick absorption) and with special techniques such as Vita-Flex or the Raindrop technique.
You can safely use essential oils throughout pregnancy and on infants and young children. Smaller bodies need smaller doses and when applying on small children always dilute oils if dilution is suggested on the bottle. A small child or baby may only need 1 drop whereas an adult would use 3-4 drops of the same oil. If you need to spread the oil over a large area, such as a rash (eczema, poison ivy, etc.) just dilute it with a non-essential oil. This will make sure the essential oil is applied evenly and your child will get the benefits from both oils.
Where to Get Essential Oils
I use Young Living Essential Oils. I have experimented with oils from several other companies, but did not receive the same results that I do with Young Living oils. You can usually find essential oils at your local health food store that are much cheaper, but most oils on the market have been diluted with chemicals and other additives to make them inexpensive to produce, or they have not been distilled in a way that will keep them at their highest potency. There are different classifications of essential oils depending on the tests the oils have passed. Oils that say “100% Pure” are not necessarily 100% pure, that’s just the classification. You should never use oils internally unless they are therapeutic grade. Therapeutic Grade essential oils require very careful processing in order to retain the highest benefits possible from the oil and keep out any impurities. All Young Living oils are Therapeutic Grade and safe to use.