There is no denying it—scent plays a powerful role in our lives. But its value extends beyond just a pleasant smell. Many cultures have embraced the benefits of essential oils for years to improve their health and overall wellbeing. Today, as more people turn to natural remedies, essential oils have become stars in the wellness world. They are used for everything from medicinal treatments and skin care, to home cleaning solutions and relaxation.
Here is what we should know about plant therapy essential oils in Singapore, plus nine awesome benefits of incorporating them into our routine.
What are they?
Essential oils are aromatic compounds that are distilled from the flowers, leaves, bark, stems, seeds, and other parts of plants. What is left behind is the essential essence of the plant, which is a highly concentrated liquid with a strong, distinct aroma. Because the aromatic compounds are so small, it takes a lot of plants to produce even one vial of oil. For example, it takes approximately 30 pounds of lavender to make one 15 ml bottle of lavender essential oil. And while they are called oils, they may not feel like what we expect because they do not contain fatty acids.
There is a wide range of essential oils—from rosemary and frankincense to orange and lemongrass. Each offers unique properties and a noninvasive way to improve our physical, mental, or emotional health. And thanks to the antibacterial and antifungal properties of some essential oils, they also make great non-toxic housecleaning solutions. Here are nine benefits of essential oils:
They promote relaxation and sleep.
Lavender is known for its relaxing effects, which can help us sleep. Studies have found that lavender oil’s sedative effects help promote deep sleep and may help mild cases of insomnia. At bedtime, add a few drops to our pillowcase or the bottoms of our feet.
They can relieve stress.
Some scents have a natural calming effect. Oils like lavender and rosemary have been shown to help decrease cortisol, the body’s stress hormone. Another study found that lavender may help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression in pregnant women.
They can help alleviate pain.
Aromatherapy offers a simple alternative to pain medication. In one study, aromatherapy massage reduced pain in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Another study found that aromatherapy with damask rose helped decrease the intensity of pain for some burn patients.
They can boost our mood.
Our sense of smell has the power to influence our mood. Studies have found that bergamot may boost mood and that lavender may alleviate emotional symptoms associated with the premenstrual syndrome in some women.
They can treat skin problems naturally.
The antifungal, antiseptic, and antibacterial qualities of tea tree oil make it a good skin cleanser, blemish treatment, and infection fighter. Add a few drops to our facial cleanser or to water, and then treat the affected area.
They promote immune function.
Purifying oils, such as tea-tree oil and oregano oil, are powerful immune boosters. Oregano oil is a strong antimicrobial, which can help us get over a cold or flu. Add one or two drops of water or tea to support healthy immune function. Eucalyptus, lemon, and peppermint can also help open up our airways—welcome relief during allergy season.
They keep our home clean.
Essential oils offer a nontoxic alternative to typical household cleaners. Eucalyptus, lemon, and tea tree oil are all good cleansing agents to use in our home. Combine tea tree and lemon oil with water for an all-purpose cleaner, or add a few drops to a diffuser to purify the air in our home.
They improve our digestion.
There is a reason that our toothpaste is often flavored with peppermint. Oils like peppermint and ginger have been known to improve digestion and make us feel better when we have an upset stomach. To take advantage of its benefits, mix a drop or two of peppermint or ginger oil into our water or tea.
They can energize us.
Have we hit an afternoon slump? Skip the coffee and grab our essential oils. Oils like peppermint, lemon, and orange will automatically perk us up. Place a drop or two in the palm of our hand and inhale. To read more about concentrated plant essence in Singapore click here.