Cinnamon Oil

Cinnomon-banner“Cinnamon is empowering to the will and is one of the best oils for circulation especially during menopause”, says Light Miller in her book Ayurveda and Aromatherapy. This oil also enhances blood circulation, supports the functions of the heart, augments sexual function, improves digestion, boosts sexual desire and controls diabetes.

The essential oil of Cinnamon is obtained from the dried inner bark of the Cinnamon tree, scientifically known as Cinnamomum zeylanicum (now called as Cinnamomum verum) by steam distillation method.

Cinnamon is a symbol of sovereignty and respect and was a prestigious gift to Gods and Monarchs in the history. Called as Darusita or Tvak in Ayurveda, Cinnamon has a long history in Ayurvedic medicine for treating malaria, diabetes, menopausal problems, headache, bad breath, digestive disorders, impotence, anemia, sinus congestion, dyspepsia, blood circulation, scabies, intestinal infections and gynecological problems (used even as a natural birth-control aid).

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Historical uses and importance of Cinnamon herb and its essential oil:

Cinnamon is a small bushy evergreen tree that is indigenous to South Asia, especially to Sri Lanka and India. It is credited as one of the three oldest herb known to the ancient world along with Myrrh and Frankincense. The oldest historical reference of Cinnamon is its description found in the ancient Jewish religious text Torah.

Biblical texts talk about Cinnamon and its esteemed uses in various places and the most noted among them is the command to Moses to make use of cinnamon and cassia in the holy anointing oil.

Solomon describes the charm of his love by saying that her garments scented with cinnamon are like the smell of Lebanon. In various proverbs it’s been mentioned that the bed of the lovers is adorned with the aroma of cinnamon, aloes and myrrh.

The primordial Indians used Cinnamon as a condiment and in Ayurvedic healing before 8th century and the traditional Chinese physicians used Cinnamon as early as 2700 B.C.

It was also imported to Egypt in 2000 B.C. Pliny the Elder, Dioscorides, Galen and many other renowned herbalists have documented the therapeutic uses of Cinnamon.

Cinnamon was held high in the ancient period and was valued more than 15 times of silver (about 350 grams of Cinnamon was equivalent to that of 5 kgs of Silver in the 1st Century). The traditional Egyptians used Cinnamon and its essential oil in embalming dead bodies and in preserving meat. Ayurvedic system used Cinnamon for controlling the blood sugar level and for assisting digestive disorders. Its essential oil was used in pacifying the nerves and muscles.

The Traditional Chinese Medicine used this herb as an aid in treating painful and delayed menstruation, diarrhea, cold, cough and other respiratory problems.

Cinnamon was burnt as an offering in religious ceremonies and also for sanctifying the atmosphere. It was used by the primeval Romans attaining the healing powers for spiritual wellness.

Chemical constituents or Gas Chromatography Report (GC) of Cinnamon oil:

The Gas chromatography report witnesses Cinnamon oil with about 15 chemical constituents that contribute to its distinct aroma, remedial values, consistency and superiority of this splendid oil. Among which, (E)-Cinnamaldehyde has the highest area with a proportion of about 76.8% of Cinnamon oil components.

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(E)-Cinnamaldehyde

Eugenol

Cinnamyl acetate

Alpha-pinene

Linalool

Alfa-copaene

Beta-caryophyllene

I certainly trust that this information would help in having a clear picture about the major chemical constituents of Cinnamon oil.

The table crafted below elucidates the unique nature and therapeutic attributes of these biochemical constituents to the medicinal magnificence of Cinnamon essential oil.

cinnamon-tableTherapeutic properties of Cinnamon essential oil:

The remedial properties of Cinnamon essential oil are antioxidant, astringent, antibacterial, antimicrobial, anti-clotting, anti-fungal, cardiac, emmenagogue, stimulant, analgesic, antibiotic, vermifuge, tonic, aphrodisiac, stomachic, diaphoretic, diuretic, anti-parasitic, alterative, expectorant, antispasmodic and carminative.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Cinnamon essential oil:

Ayurveda is the oldest healing systems on earth that focuses on a holistic approach for healing, preventing and ensuring longevity for humanity. By the word holistic, Ayurvedic remedies aim at granting complete health including the physical, mental and spiritual health.

This is because, this traditional Indian methodology strongly believes that these three aspects of health are inter-related and the weakness of any of these aspects will directly or indirectly affect the other two.

This is explained in the Sutrasthana of Charaka Samhita, the oldest Ayurvedic encyclopedia as The three – body, psyche, and soul – act as a tripod. The world stands upon them, and within them, the world abides.” Ayurveda is an absolute common sense science that stimulates proper functioning of the system, peaceful sleep, emotional tranquility, spiritual oneness and takes you a brand new world of energy and enrichment.

The exclusivity of Ayurveda lies in its individual attention for every person even if a group of 10 people are affected by the same illness.

The typical ‘one size fits all’ principle of the modern medical system never holds good for a natural healing technique like Ayurveda. Here every individual is considered as a unique part of nature, made up with the five elemental forces of nature. They are fire, earth, water, space and air.

These five elements represent themselves in the form of three biological energies known as doshas, namely vata, pitta and kapha. These 3 doshas join together to form an individual constitution, which makes every person unique with a specified set of physical, mental and spiritual attributes.

Vata is a combination of air and space and is in charge of respiratory functions, nervous system and the process of circulation. Pitta stands for fire and water and is responsible for body temperature and the process of metabolism. Earth and water put together forms kapha dosha and is accountable for structure of the body, functions of the fluids in the system and sustenance.

Every individual has a unique combination of these doshas. Balance between these doshas indicates healthiness and imbalance due to lifestyle, food habits and other environmental factors lead to doshic imbalances causing illnesses.

Ayurveda recommends the use of natural remedies like herbs, yoga, essential oils, meditation, Ayurvedic routine, prayers and other Ayurvedic therapies according to the individual constitution of a person, so as to correct the imperfect balance of doshas.

Cinnamon essential oil is a perfect Ayurvedic essential oil to treat the surplus of vata and kapha doshas and the deficit of pitta dosha.

This makes Cinnamon oil a prime choice in treating digestive problems as it’s known to enhance the ‘agni or fire’ in the system that is responsible for metabolic functions.

It’s time to have a look at the Ayurvedic health benefits of Cinnamon essential oil.

Cinnoman-broucher1. Boon to diabetics:

In an Ayurvedic perspective, diabetes is a disarray of kapha unevenness occurred due to weakened digestive fire. Cinnamon is a nature’s wonder herb for treating increased kapha dosha and enhance the flow of pitta energy. This is mainly because of its warming properties that help in encouraging Agni or the digestive fire that supports the balanced functioning of the digestive system.

Cinnamon is habitually prescribed for people with kapha dosha predominance and these people generally hold a wet, cold, heavy and slow mechanism of the body.

By this way, using Cinnamon essential oil either in a massage blend or in inhalation along with an Ayurvedic diet and Ayurvedic routine that includes healthy lifestyle changes, meditation, prayers, yoga and other simple physical exercises for controlling the blood glucose levels of the system, thus having a check on diabetes.

Cinnamon has been recommended by the American Diabetes Association in 2006 for controlling diabetes. Dr. Fuhrman quotes few important research works on diabetes including the study on ‘Complementary and alternative medicine for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes’ and states that “The bark of Cinnamomum trees contains phytochemicals that enhance insulin signaling and facilitate glucose uptake and storage by the body’s cells.”

A 2003 study on Cinnamon for diabetes established that taking Cinnamon supplements regularly for 40 days decreased blood sugar and level of cholesterol in type 2 diabetes patients.

Massaging your body with 10 drops of Cinnamon essential oil blended with 5 to 7 ml sesame oil can help in regulating the blood sugar level with its pungent aroma and heating energy. The therapeutic properties of this oil enters the blood stream by penetrating through the skin cells and act directly on the cellular structure. It also aids in controlling the digestion of sugar and fatty substances, which helps in providing resistance of insulin in Type 2 diabetes.

A 2012 research on “Effects of Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Ceylon cinnamon) on blood glucose and lipids in a diabetic and healthy rat model” by the Diabetes Research Unit, Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka published in PubMed concluded that “Cinnamomum zeylanicum lowered blood glucose, reduced food intake, and reduced atherogenic LDL cholesterol.”

2. Nature’s most appealing aphrodisiac:

Cinnamon holds the honor of elating the senses of mankind for numerous centuries with its sweet, mesmerizing and rich aroma. In his book ‘Dangerous Tastes’, author Andrew Dalby quotes Cinnamon as “an aroma of divine worship and of sensual luxury.”

The warming, stimulating and aphrodisiac properties in Cinnamon help in increasing the body temperature and helps in arousing strong sexual desire in men and women.

Massaging your lower abdomen, genital parts and thighs with 5 drops of Cinnamon oil mixed with 2.5 ml virgin olive oil can help in improving sensual feelings, augmenting libido in both male and female, treat impotency and erectile dysfunction.

Inhaling the healing aroma of Cinnamon oil by adding 2 drops to your burner, vaporizer or diffuser along with this massaging can act as a great aid in strengthening the uterus muscles, relieving menstrual pain, regularizing blocked menstruation, washing out uterine congestion, and inducing labor pain.

This is due to the tendency of Cinnamon to stimulate the secretion of Oxytocin hormones responsible for increasing uterine contractions and enhancing the production of breast milk.

3. Aromatic treat to treat your digestive problems:

Cinnamon has an euphoric aroma that increases the secretion of digestive acids and gastric juices by enhancing agni or the digestive fire.

The slightly bitter and pungent taste of Cinnamon along with its hot potency aids in processing ama or the undigested toxic substances, reducing heaviness of the stomach, treating sluggish bowel movements and alleviating abdominal pain.

Inhaling the energizing aroma of Cinnamon oil by adding 2 to 3 drops of this oil in burner, vaporizer or your hanky along with a warming massage of your abdomen with 4 drops of Cinnamon oil blended with 2 ml of coconut oil can assist in treating colic, slow digestion, nausea, dyspepsia and diarrhea.

4. Relieves respiratory infections:

Ayurveda describes most of the respiratory disorders as kapha imbalance. This excess kapha stockpiles in the respiratory passages in the form of mucous and phlegm deposits and cause hindrance in the free movement of air to the lungs and nasal passages. This is why many or all of the respiratory illnesses are accompanied by breathing difficulties.

Cinnamon essential oil has kapha-reducing properties with its bitter, hot, pungent and penetrating qualities. The expectorant, decongestant and demulcent properties of this oil help in loosening the thick phlegm and mucous secretion in the nasal passages and the respiratory tract. The anti-tubercular activity of cinnamic acid present in Cinnamon oil also helps in treating tuberculosis, chronic cough and asthma.

Adding 3 drops of Cinnamon oil in steam inhalation can be extremely helpful in warming up the lungs, liquefying nasal and chest congestion and eliminating phlegm and mucous in the bronchial passages. 2 drops of this oil added to vaporub and massaged gently on the throat, chest and back can also assist in relieving stuffy nose, watery eyes, nasal congestion, headache and cough.

5. Helps release anger and dependence:

The sweet smelling oil of Cinnamon has been found to boost memory power and cognitive functioning abilities of the mind. Many Ayurvedic schools have recommended Cinnamon for enhancing memory skills.

Cinnamon essential oil empowers the willpower and purifies the spirit. This aids in treating mental fatigue, anger, tension, anxiety, depression and other negative feelings. This oil affects the Solar plexus chakra, which connects our personal fire with that of the world revolving around us.

Fears of criticism, rejection and lack of self-confidence affect the functioning of this chakra. Using 2 drops of Cinnamon oil in bath or in diffuser or vaporizer can help in increasing one’s feelings of independence and promotes one to take risks with confidence and power.

6. Clears blood impurities and promotes blood circulation:

Cinnamon essential oil has blood purifying properties that are attributed to its stimulant and cleansing remedial values. It helps in eliminating the toxic substances in the blood through urine and sweat.

2 drops of Cinnamon oil added to diffuser during Pranayama, the technique of balanced breathing followed by a meditation can help in discarding the toxins in the blood through exhalation, enhancing Ojas or the vital energy for longevity, stimulating the cardiac functions and granting mental peace and improved blood circulation especially to the six chakras in the body.

7. Checks the effects of fungal and bacterial infections:

The essential oil of Cinnamon is an effective immune system booster by nature. It also has antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties that curb the growth of disastrous micro-organisms in the system. Mixing 2 drops of Cinnamon oil with 1 ml of almond oil and applying it on the affected parts can help in healing wounds, burns, cuts, candida, boils, itches, athlete’s foot, and ringworm and prevents the wound from turning septic.

According to a 2006 study by the Saurashtra University, India, Cinnamon essential oil extracted from the bark of the Cinnamon tree got attained 42.5 out of 50 for its anti-fungal activity, whereas Hexaconazole, a popular fungicide often used in agriculture scored only 22.5 for 50. This witnesses the effectiveness of Cinnamon oil in treating fungal infections like ringworm, athlete’s foot etc.

Another study published in the International Journal of Food Microbiology proved that Cinnamon oil killed about 92% of gram negative and gram positive bacteria out of the 25 tested bacterial strains. Another source states that Cinnamon used in a blend with Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Clove and Lemon has the potent to kill about 99% of airborne bacteria in just 12 minutes.

Also used in:

Apart from all these health benefits, Cinnamon oil is used as a flavor in baked products, candies, desserts, soups, pickles, stews, beverages, meat and poultry etc. It is also used in skin care creams and lotions for enhancing the skin complexion and removing impurities and skin blemishes.

Thought for the day:

In wilderness I sense the miracle of life, and behind it our scientific accomplishments fade to trivia.  -Charles Lindbergh

Disclaimer:

This article is only for informational and educational purposes and is written purely in the interest of sharing the traditional wisdom of the Ayurveda, the oldest of all healing sciences. It is not meant to treat, prevent or diagnose any health conditions or replace any kind of prescribed medicines or expert advice or a medical professional.

Never use essential oils internally. Do remember to dilute essential oils in appropriate carrier oils before using it on the skin externally as pure and organic essential oils are the life essence of plants and are highly concentrated substances. Consult your Ayurvedic expert/healthcare professional before choosing the appropriate essential oils for your unique constitution and health condition. Keep away from children, pregnant women and nursing moms.

The MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) of Cinnamon oil is readily available for your enhanced safety and better usage.

Gas Chromatography Report (GC analysis) of Cinnamon oil.

Cinnamon Essential Oil – Possible Skin Issues:

cinnamon-oil-logoGreener Life Diamond – Bio-Healthy Score => 3 – Possible Skin Issues:

See => http://www.essentialdepot.com/GreenerLifeDiamond.html

Besides being an indispensable spice and herbal remedy, Cinnamon is reported for negative effects including possible skin issues like allergic reactions, irritation of the skin, stimulating menstruation, contracting the uterine muscles, skin sensitization, dermatitis and burning sensation.

It is highly advisable to avoid Cinnamon oil during pregnancy as it may shrivel the uterine muscles, cause indigestion, pain in the abdomen, contribute to premature labor and is completely unsafe for the development of the fetus.

The major chemical components that are in charge for the potential skin problems and other adverse health conditions of Cinnamon oil are Cinnamaldehyde, cinnamic acid and cinnamyl alcohol. It may cause a burning sensation or irritation on the engaged parts when used in the form of skin care, oral hygiene (toothpastes and mouthwashes) and pain relieving products including ointments and rubs.

Cinnamon oil, with the presence of these constituents is said to cause subchronic and severe toxicity, when used beyond the prescribed level of use. The maximum recommended usage level of Cinnamaldehyde by The International Fragrance Association (IFRA) is 0.05%.

Though Cinnamon has GRAS (Generally Regarded As Safe) status, The Council of Europe has fixed an ADI of 1.25mg/kg for Cinnamaldehyde, which is the same as an adult dosage of 115 mg of Cinnamon bark oil.

According to the Scientific Committee on Cosmetic Products and Non-Food Products (SCCNFP) the presence of Cinnamaldehyde in any ready to use products should not surpass 0.1%

Essential oils are recommended only for dermal application and never ingest Cinnamon oil as it may cause toxic effects on the liver (hepatotoxic), kidney (nephrotoxicity) and the entire system. Diluted Cinnamon oil in appropriate carrier oils is prescribed safe and concentrated use may cause chronic allergies, irritation, dermatitis and chronic sensitization.

Studies witness severe burns in people due to the skin contact of undiluted Cinnamon oil and is commonly related to burning sensation in the skin, mouth, mucous membrane stomach and chest , intermittent blistering, nausea, dizziness and sensitization accounted to the presence of Cinnamaldehyde. This also applies to the use of Cinnamon oil in vapor therapy and dermal application.

Cinnamon oil is said to have mild phototoxic effects, control platelet aggregation (Do not use Cinnamon oil if you are taking anticoagulant and anti-diabetic medications). It may cause reproductive toxicity (when tested on pregnant mice, it decreased the count of nuclei and modified the embryo distribution).

Always do a patch test before using Cinnamon oil on your skin.

Reference Links Substantiating Possible Skin Issues of Cinnamon Oil:

  1. Cinnamon: An Imperative Spice For Human Comfort by Raaz K Maheshwari, AK Chauhan, Ayushi Gupta, Shobha Sharma published in The International Journal of Pharmaceutical Research and Bio-Science
  2. Cinnamon: Mystic Powers of a Minute Ingredient by Pallavi Kawatra and Rathai Rajagopalan, published in the Journal of Pharmacognosy Research
  3. Medicinal Properties of ‘True’ Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylancium): A Systematic Review by The Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka, published in Bio Med Central, Complementary and Alternative Medicine
  4. A toxicologic and dermatologic assessment of cinnamyl alcohol, cinnamaldehyde and cinnamic acid when used as fragrance ingredients by The RIFM expert panel, published in the Food and Chemical Toxicology
  5. Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals By Robert Tisserand, Rodney Young
  6. Leung’s Encyclopedia of Common Natural Ingredients, used in Food, Drugs and Cosmetics by Ikhlas A. Khan and Ehab A. Abourashed.

Suggested Reading:

  1. The Cinnamon Supplement: Alternative Medicine for a Healthy Body (Health Collection) by William Wagner
  2. Natural Cinnamon And Honey Cures: Cinnamon Health Benefits, Cures, Remedies, Treatments and Recipes. Boost Energy, Control Diabetes, Cure Arthritis, Prevent Alzheimer’s, Colds, even Weight Loss! by Patricia Gardner
  3. Cinnamon Oil Aromatherapy (Group 3 Card 9) by Alternative Therapies
  4. God’s Healing Herbs by Dennis Ellingson
  5. Ayurveda & Aromatherapy: The Earth Essential Guide to Ancient Wisdom and Modern Healing by Dr. Light Miller, Dr. Bryan Miller

Reference Links:

  1. Cinnamon by Wikipedia
  2. Choosing the right Cinnamon by Dr. Fuhrman
  3. Cinnamon plant profile by Sacred Earth (Ethnobotany and Ecotravel)
  4. Effects of Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Ceylon cinnamon) on blood glucose and lipids in a diabetic and healthy rat model by Priyanga Ranasinghe, Sanja Perera, Mangala Gunatilake,1 Eranga Abeywardene, Nuwan Gunapala, Sirimal Premakumara,Kamal Perera, Dilani Lokuhetty,and Prasad Katulanda, Diabetes Research Unit, Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka
  5. Medicinal properties of ‘true’ cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum): a systematic review by Department of Pharmacology, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka


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Citronella Oil

Citronella-banner‘Citronella is there for insect bites and stings’ is an endemic statement and is a realistic one as well, as the essential oil of Citronella is an excellent air purifier and disinfectant that aids in warding off insects and treating stings and bites of venomous insects also. The lemony, warming and sweet smelling Citronella oil is extracted from its aromatic grassy leaves by steam distillation.

Scientifically known as Cymbopogon nardus, this aromatic herb is called as Pangiri in Ayurveda and have been used in this ancient healing system in the treatment of toothaches, redness, irritation and inflammation of the skin, infectious diseases, digestive problems, headache, rheumatism, fatigue and as an after childbirth wash.     

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Historical uses and importance of Citronella and its essential oil:

Native to Southeastern parts of Asia, especially Sri Lanka; Citronella is a member of the plant family Poaceae. It is also grown widely as a commercial crop in Java Islands, Indonesia, Burma, India, West Indies, Taiwan, Madagascar and Ceylon.

This perennial grass variety is loved all over the world for its enticing lemon aroma and its blue-green leaves that grow up to a height of 1.5 meters tall. The Ceylon variety is considered to be the best and is called as Maha pengeri in Ceylon.

Citronella and its essential oil have been in use for more than thousands of years and were used as one of the oldest effective insect repellent even before the manufacturing of insect repellents like DEET.

This essential oil is used in the manufacturing of soaps, perfumes, detergents, insecticides, soap flakes and household cleaners. It was used in traditional medicine for treating menstrual problems, increased perspiration, mental fatigue, depression and as a safe repellent for pets.

Chemical constituents or Gas Chromatography Report (GC) of Citronella oil:

According to the Gas chromatography report, Citronella oil constitutes of 15 chemical components that contribute to its fragrance, therapeutic attributes, consistency and quality of this oil. Of which, Citronellal contributes to the highest proportion of Citronella oil constituents with about 51.5% of its total composition.

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I trust that this must certainly help you in getting to know the exclusive information about the prime chemical constituents of Citronella oil.

The table crafted below clearly depicts the unique nature and contributions of these bio-chemical constituents to the healing magnificence of Citronella essential oil.

citronella-gct

Therapeutic properties of Citronella essential oil:

These constituents contribute to its remedial properties like bactericidal, diaphoretic, insecticidal, antioxidant, antiseptic, deodorant, stimulant, antifungal, tonic, relaxant, parasitic, antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Citronella essential oil:

Ayurveda is a mighty ocean enclosing mammoth health benefits for humanity. More than anything else, an Ayurvedic system teaches you absolute discipline to lead a hale, hearty and disease-free life for attaining longevity through healthy aging.

Ayurveda simply means the ‘knowledge of life’ and the first thing that Ayurveda insists is to have a thorough knowledge about oneself. Health according to this noble science is a three-dimensional array that comprises of physical, mental and spiritual health.

Everything on earth including the living and non-living things are a part of nature and are made up of the same five elements that Mother Nature is created with. They are space, fire, water, earth and air.

The uniqueness in Ayurveda lies in its remedial methodology that treats individuals rather than their illnesses; it focuses on the root cause of an illness rather than its symptoms; it follows a unique treatment methodology for every person even with the same illness rather than following the ‘one-size fits all’ strategy.

Every individual is a unique representation of nature with a specific individual constitution, comprising of three vital biological energies called as doshas. Each of this energy is a combination of any two vital elements and these dynamic energies determine the personality, behavior, physical and mental makeup of a person.

Vata is a fundamental energy of air and space and is responsible for circulation and nervous functions of the body. Pitta is a basic force of fire and water and is accountable for body temperature and metabolic functions. Kapha is a dynamic force of earth and water and is in charge of the physical structure, movement of fluids and sustenance.

Ayurveda identifies this innate presence of doshas and prescribes natural remedies in such a way to treat doshic imbalances, which would otherwise lead to diseases. The most predominant natural Ayurvedic remedies are essential oils, herbs, yoga, simple physical exercises, meditation, Ayurvedic routine, Abhyanga or Ayurvedic massaging and prayers.

Essential oils are the life energy of plants and are a potential Ayurvedic remedy for treating mankind through the sense of smell and sense of touch.

Citronella essential oil is known for lessening excess of pitta and kapha dosha and has a neutral effect on vata energy.

The Ayurvedic uses of Citronella essential oil are:

Citronella-broucher1. Nature’s best insect repellent:

Citronella essential oil is the most popular natural remedy for treating insect stings and bites and is also a potent insect repellent to keep away insects like mosquitoes, flies, ants and ticks. It has been registered in the United States since 1948 for this purpose. Citronella oil has been regarded as biopesticide with a non-toxic action by the United States Environmental Protection Agency. It is also considered as a natural alternative to chemical-based insect repellents like DEET.

Adding 2 to 3 drops of Citronella oil in your air freshener, diffuser or vaporizer can assist in repelling insects. As it has been marked as generally recognized as safe (GRAS) by the United States Food and Drug Administration, Citronella oil can also be used to prevent flea infestations on your pets. Mixing 5 drops of Citronella oil to 10 ml of coconut oil and applying on your skin can guard you against mosquitoes and other insect stings and bites.

For pets, you can add 5 drops of Citronella oil to 8 ml of pet shampoo and make them feel fresh and flea-free for the entire day. “I use it when I shampoo my dog’s hair; 20 drops of Citronella added to 2 tablespoons of shampoo is very effective at killing fleas. He will be a happy dog with no fleas”, says Bryan Miller in the book Ayurveda and Aromatherapy.

Insect repelling cartridges, candles, tablets and pellets for using in outdoor household areas are also available in the market with Citronella oil formula. The University of Maryland Medical Center study on ‘Insect bites and stings’ talks about a study where “citronella candles reduced the number of female mosquitoes caught in traps by 35%; linalool candles reduced female mosquitoes by 65%; and geraniol candles reduced female mosquitoes by 82%”. Citronella essential oil has citronellal, linalool and geraniol content in it, thus making it the most effective insect repellent on earth.

A 2008 study on ‘Characterization and mosquito repellent activity of Citronella oil nanoemulsion’ by the National Science and Technology Development Agency, Thailand published in PubMed suggested that Citronella oil showed a release rate that related well to the protection time, contributing to a prolonged mosquito protection time.

2. Wards off bacterial and fungal infections:

Citronella is a proven antibacterial oil with the presence of remedial constituents like methyl isoeugenol. It works by restricting the growth of existing bacteria causing infections and curtailing the spreading or growth of new bacteria. Massaging your system with 10 drops of Citronella oil blended with 10 ml of olive oil can be effective in treating bacterial infections in the stomach, kidneys, liver, intestines, prostate, bladder, colon and the urinary passages.

The antifungal property of Citronella oil makes it a trusted natural remedy in combating the fungal infections like athlete’s foot, candida, dandruff and ringworm. Adding 2 drops of Citronella oil in warm bathing water can be of great assistance in treating external fungus problems in fingers, skin, toes and scalp and also effective in treating internal fungus infections causing fungal dysentery, vaginal infections, lung growth caused by weakened resistance and certain other health conditions.

3. Clears away excess oil in the skin and hair:

The essential oil of Citronella is a skin-friendly and hair-friendly oil that is often overlooked mainly because of its growing importance as a natural insect repellent. 2 drops of Citronella oil added to 1 ml of jojoba oil or to your mild skin care cream or lotion can help in cleansing the skin, removing excess oil secretion, nourishing the skin cells from within, moisturizing the skin, tightening the pores, enhancing the skin complexion and leaving it soft and supple.

The acne-clearing and other skin complimenting benefits of Citronella oil makes it popular ingredient in many sunscreen lotions, fairness creams and moisturizing lotions. A 2006 study by Steve Ritter on ‘Citronella oil: Mixture of terpenes in plant oil provides a relatively safe way to stave off pesky flying insects’ says “Citronella oil, containing a mix of terpenes (geranial and citronellal), has been used in personal care products for more than 50 years and has very low human toxicity.”

The fresh, clean and lemony aroma of Citronella oil comes as an esteem to your shampoo, as it aids in controlling dandruff with its anti-fungal properties, kills lice with its insecticide properties and removes excess oil from your oily hair and leaves a touch of absolute moisture in case of dry hair. Mix 5 to 6 drops of Citronella oil in 8 to 10 ml of mild shampoo and apply it gently on your scalp and hair. Leave it for 5 minutes and rinse thoroughly for a never before shiny, clean and lustrous hair.

4. Emancipates toxic substances in the body:

The detoxifying and diuretic properties of Citronella essential oil acts as an excellent aid in eliminating toxic remains left behind due to indigestion, unclean environment and other unhealthy lifestyle practices. These toxic substances are called as ama in Ayurveda and are the major reason behind numerous health conditions like arthritis, rheumatic pain, sluggishness, nervous exhaustion, fatigue, urinary infections and even severe heart problems.

Massaging the painful, inflamed or affected parts of the body with 5 drops of Citronella oil blended with 3 ml of sesame oil can assist in reducing inflammation, discharging of toxic substances, uric acid, excess fat deposits and water stagnation in the body through sweat and urine. You can also add 3 to 4 drops of Citronella oil in hot or cold compress and massage the aching parts for quick relief.

Ayurvedic texts state that only 20 to 30% of toxic substances in the body get discharged through urine and sweat and about 70% of harmful toxins are released only through exhalation. So deep breathing with slow inhalation along with slow and steady exhalation can be a sure shot remedy in expelling detrimental toxins in the body and this breathing exercise in known as Pranayama.

5. Appeases the mind:

The fruity, woody and citrusy aroma of Citronella essential oil instills calmness and warmth on your mind, body and spirit. Conflict of thoughts and perceptions are often the reason of stress, frustration and depression. Inhaling Citronella oil added to a diffuser or vaporizer (3 drops) has the power to grant mental clarity by pacifying the mental and emotional bodies that aids in determining the inner reasons for conflict.

Spiritually, Citronella essential oil has a positive impact on the Solar plexus chakra known as ‘Manipura’ in Sanskrit. This chakra is responsible for courage, self respect, ambition, self esteem and self discipline. Massaging your body with 10 drops of Citronella oil mixed with 10 ml of virgin Olive oil can assist in releasing the energy of distrust responsible for aggravation, loneliness and disharmony between the self and society.

6. Kills worms and stimulates the digestive system:

Worms and parasites in the stomach and intestines hinder the normal metabolic functions and lead to delayed physical and mental activities of the body. 2 drops of Citronella oil added to diffuser or vaporizer along with massaging your abdomen with 5 drops of this oil mixed with 3 ml of sesame oil can assist in killing intestinal worms and parasites and stimulate the normal functioning of the digestive system and enhancing the process of absorption of essential nutrients in food, toning the lining muscles of stomach and intestines and supporting the process of excretion.

7. Alleviates pain and stimulates the system:

Citronella essential oil has tonic properties that support and strengthen the nervous system, digestive system, excretory system and the endocrine system. By this way, massaging your body with 10 drops of Citronella oil blended with 10 ml of coconut oil can help in enhancing the immune power, hormone secretion, brain functions and blood circulation. This also helps in relieving pain including arthritic pain, migraine, rheumatic pain, muscular and joint pain, dysmennorhea, back pain and headache.

Other uses:

Citronella essential oil is also used in spritzers, aroma lamps, aromatic candles and room fresheners along with Eucalyptus, Lemon and Lavender essential oil for disinfecting, purifying and deodorizing the surroundings, making it an insect-free environment.

Disclaimer:

This information is for educational purposes only. Details enclosed here are an endeavor to maintain traditional wisdom and understanding. Do not use this for diagnosing or replacing any professional medical advice or prescribed medication. Always consult your Ayurvedic practitioner/ healthcare expert before choosing the right essential oils according to your medical condition and unique individual constitution.

Never use essential oils internally, including Citronella oil as it has aldehyde content. Always dilute it in appropriate carrier oils or other liquids before using it for topical applications, as organic and pure essential oils are the life forces of plants and are extremely concentrated substances. Care should be taken in using Citronella oil if you are pregnant or a nursing mother.

The MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) of Citronella oil is readily available for your enhanced safety and better usage.

Gas Chromatography Report (GC analysis) of Citronella oil.

Thought for the day:

I’m thankful to be breathing, on this side of the grass. Whatever comes, comes. -Ron Perlman

Suggested Reading:

  1. Citronella by Eugene Raskin
  2. Citronella ; Cymbopogon Nardus – A Literature Survey From Information Services Centre, Industrial Technology Institute
  3. Ayurveda & Aromatherapy: The Earth Essential Guide to Ancient Wisdom and Modern Healing by Dr. Light Miller, Dr. Bryan Miller
  4. The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils: The Complete Guide to the Use of Aromatic Oils In Aromatherapy, Herbalism, Health, and Well Being by Julia Lawless
  5. The Naturally Clean Home: 100 Safe and Easy Herbal Formulas for Non-Toxic Cleansers by Karyn Siegel-Maier

Reference Links:

  1. Citronella Oil by Wikipedia
  2. Citronella Oil by Steve Ritter published in PUBS
  3. Health benefits of Citronella Essential Oil by Organic Facts
  4. A handbook on Lemongrass, Neem and Citronella by Janhit Foundation
  5. Plant-based insect repellents: a review of their efficacy, development and testing by Marta Ferreira Maia and Sarah J Moore published in PubMed


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Geranium Oil

Euphoria is the feeling that you will experience with the inspiring and heartening floral aroma of Geranium essential oil, used for uplifting the spirit, alleviating nervous tension, relieving off-putting memories and negative emotions.

Geranium-bannerExtracted by steam distillation from the flowers and leaves of Pelargonium graveolens plant, Geranium essential oil is celebrated as an exceptional healing agent that helps in quickly repairing wounds, cuts and injuries including bone fractures.

Geranium is immune-system stimulating, firms and tightens tissue and is mood elevating”, says Bryan Miller and Light Miller in their book Ayurveda and Aromatherapy. Often used in improving the body’s ability to fight against illnesses, Geranium essential oil is used in Ayurvedic healing for stimulating the lymphatic system, assisting in menopausal and menstrual problems, relieving stress and for treating skin problems.

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Historical uses of Geranium essential oil:

Geranium is native to Egypt and is also believed to have been originated in the Reunion Island of the Indian Ocean. It slowly spread to Madagascar, South Africa, the Congo, Morocco, Central America, England, Italy, Spain, Russia, China, France and India. The best quality Geranium essential oil is said to be from the Reunion Island, which was previously called as Ile de Bourbon and so the finest essential oil from this island is known as Geranium Bourbon-La-Reunion.

Geranium and its essential oil have been used in numerous Alternative medicinal practices for healing wounds and fractures. It is said that the ancient Greeks used Geranium for treating skin problems. Egyptians used Geranium oil for enhancing the beauty and radiance of their skin.

This plant was grown around homes in the ancient times to keep away from evil spirits. The traditional Africans used Geranium oil in the treatment of cholera and tumors. The Indian tribes in North America used Geranium tea prepared with its root powder to enhance the body’s immune power and treat ulcers and dysentery.

The essential oil of Geranium is said to have first distilled from its leaves by the popular French chemist Recluz in the 17th century. His discovery was then supported by numerous research studies by many botanists and chemists, insisting the therapeutic use of Geranium essential oil. The leaves and flowers of this plant have also been used as a flavoring agent in teas, ice creams, cakes, jellies, sorbets, jams and salads. It has also been used in making perfumes and beauty products.

Chemical constituents or Gas Chromatography Report (GC) of Geranium oil:

According to the Gas chromatography report, Geranium oil constitutes of 20 chemical components that contribute to its fragrance, therapeutic attributes, consistency and quality of this oil. Of which, Citronellol contributes to the highest proportion of Geranium oil with about 35.0% of its total composition.

Just click on:

I trust that this must certainly help you in getting to know the exclusive information about the prime chemical constituents of Geranium oil.

The table crafted below clearly depicts the unique nature and contributions of these bio-chemical constituents to the healing magnificence of Geranium essential oil.

geranium-gct

Therapeutic properties of Geranium essential oil:

The remedial properties of this oil are antiseptic, anti-infectious, antibacterial, astringent, antimicrobial, cicatrisant, haemostatic, vulnerary, deodorant, cytophylactic, tonic, styptic, vermifuge, diuretic and immune-stimulant.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Geranium essential oil:

Ayurveda means the ‘knowledge of life’ and is a science of Mother Nature, which strongly states that Nature has all the cure in itself and illnesses occur where there is a lack of rhythm with nature. Health is a three-fold structure in Ayurveda, which states that perfect health is not just the nonexistence of diseases but the absolute balance of the mind, body and spirit.

Ayurvedic healing does not practice the ‘one size fits all’ methodology as it trusts that every individual is a unique part of nature with a distinctive combination of the five elements of nature, namely fire, water, earth, air and space, where earth is the physical body (muscles and bones), water is the blood, air is what we breathe, fire is the heat generated in our body for metabolism, absorption and body temperature and space is the spirit that dwells in.

Every human being is created with a unique individual constitution comprising of three biological energies known as doshas, which are nothing but a combination of the five elements of nature.

Vata dosha is a combination of air and space and is accountable for movements, nervous functions and respiration. Pitta is a combination of fire and water and is in charge of digestion, absorption, excretion and body temperature. Kapha dosha is an arrangement of water and earth and is responsible for structure of the body, cellular nourishment and lubrication of all the parts of body.

Ayurvedic texts state that every individual has a predominance of anyone of these doshas http://ayurvedicoils.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=1316&action=editthat determines their character and personality. It also says that illnesses occur when there is a lack of balance between these three doshas.

When it comes to treatment, Ayurveda prescribes natural remedies including herbs, essential oils, physical exercises, healthy lifestyle, Ayurvedic routine, yoga, prayers and meditation, according to the unique individual constitution of a person in such a way that it corrects the doshic imbalances.

Geranium oil has the power to pacify aggravated vata, pitta and kapha doshas.

Let’s take a look at the Ayurvedic health benefits of Geranium essential oil:

geranium-broucher1. Excellent benefits to the skin:

Geranium essential oil is a historic remedy for treating numerous skin problems ranging from pimples to scars. It works wonders on the skin mainly because of the fact that it exceptionally suits all types of skin.

The antiseptic and antimicrobial properties of Geranium oil heal and act as a shield to the skin mainly from the hazardous effects of acne. Using 2 drops of this oil in your face wash, skin cream, lotion or in face packs can assist in cleansing the skin thoroughly, regularizing the secretion of sebum and retains the natural oil and moisture content of the skin.

By this way, it prevents the formation of pimples, black heads and boils. Geranium oil is also effective in treating cellulite, eczema, dandruff and fungal infections like athlete’s foot and ringworm.

The major cause for those ugly scars on your facial skin or on any part of the body is due to lack of blood circulation leading to stagnation of toxic substances and dead skin cells that block the even circulation of melanin causing scars and marks to stay on the skin forever.

Geranium essential oil has cicatrisant and cytophylactic properties that promote blood circulation, assist proper distribution of melanin pigments, support the regeneration of dead skin cells and speeding up the growth of new skin cells.

Massaging the affected areas with 2 drops of Geranium oil blended with 1 ml of olive oil or in your regular skin care cream can be of great help in fading away your scars and bringing out the natural glow like never before.

2. Addresses feminine problems including menstruation and menopause:

Traditionally known as ‘women’s oil’, Geranium essential oil helps in treating feminine problems like excessive menstrual flow, vaginal infections and discharges during menopause.

Massaging your lower abdomen and back with 4 drops of Geranium essential oil mixed with 2 ml sesame oil helps in treating painful menstruation, excessive bleeding, mood fluctuations, fatigue and anxiety during menses and menopause.

Geranium oil has haemostatic properties that speed up the process of blood clotting and helps in controlling excess bleeding. It’s calming, soothing, tonic and stimulant properties relieves pain, stress and mood fluctuations during these ‘M&M’ times.

3. Soothes the mind:

Many recent studies have proved that Geranium essential oil stimulates the adrenal cortex, which helps in balancing the mind and grants the endurance to handle stress.

The invigorating floral fragrance along with a touch of refreshing mint aroma makes Geranium as an incomparable essential oil for alleviating stress, anxiety, fear, feelings of desertion, negative emotions, tension and agitation.

Add 5 drops of Geranium oil to warm bathing water, followed by 2 drops added to your diffuser can help in relaxing your mind, soothing your nerves and reviving your senses. This also helps in promoting peaceful sleep at night. With its assenting effects on the mind, Geranium is also recommended as a suitable oil to be used during meditation as it is trusted to guide one’s mind in the right path without confusions.

4. Heals wounds and injuries speedily:

Geranium essential oil is one among the classic natural remedies for healing wounds and injuries including fractures. It is also effective in treating hemorrhoids and is used as an important ingredient in herbal formulations for hemorrhoids treatment.

Applying 2 drops of Geranium essential oil mixed with 1 ml of coconut on the affected area aids in cleaning the wounds with its antiseptic and disinfectant properties, arrest the growth of infectious microbes and bacteria that may cause the wound to turn septic, speeds up the process of healing with its vulnerary properties, stimulates quick coagulation and blood clotting with its haemostatic properties.

A 2012 study on ‘Antibacterial activity and composition of essential oils from Pelargonium graveolens L’Her and Vitex agnus-castus L’ by the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences have stated that the essential oil of Pelargonium graveolens is active against all of the studied bacteria and the presence of β-citronellol in this volatile oil along with its possible synergistic effect with other constituents are accountable for its antibacterial effects.

5. Eliminates toxins effectively:

Accumulation of toxic substances, which are the remains of indigestion and improper metabolic functions, is the root cause lying behind numerous illnesses. These harmful remains are known as ‘ama’ in Ayurveda and numerous Ayurvedic texts state that the amassing of ama in human body can even lead to chronic illnesses.

Geranium essential oil is a natural diuretic agent that promotes the flow of urine and increases the frequency of urination, through which the toxic substances, excess salts and water in the body are eliminated easily.

This aids in stabilizing blood pressure, improving the proper functioning of the system, relieving swollen ankles, reducing inflammation, lessening rheumatic and arthritic pain due to toxic buildup and gradually treating obesity due to fluid retention. Mix 5 drops of Geranium oil in 2.5 ml of almond oil and massage it gently for discharging the harmful substances in the system.

6. Boosts the immune system:

The essential oil of Geranium has enormous tonic properties that strengthens the system, enhances the immune power and stimulates the proper functioning of all the parts of the body. Using Geranium essential oil in bathing water or steam inhalation or massage or in diffuser has positive effects on the digestive system, nervous system, endocrine system, respiratory system and circulatory system.

Massaging your body with 10 drops of Geranium oil blended with 5 ml jojoba oil or adding 5 drops of this oil to warm bathing water can assist in stimulating the adrenal glands, lymphatic system, upholding the natural balance of hormones, increasing the immunity and augmenting the body’s natural resistance to fight against illnesses.

Other health benefits:

Geranium oil is an excellent natural deodorant with its antibacterial properties that combat body odor and its floral fragrance that keeps one fresh all day long. 2 to 4 drops of this oil added to your diffuser can disinfect impure air, repel mosquitoes and other insects. 2 drops of Geranium oil added to steam inhalation can help relieve nasal congestion, tonsillitis and sore throat.

Disclaimer:

This article is only for the purpose of information and is not meant to heal or substitute any professional medical advice or prescribed medication. Never use essential oils internally and always consider to use essential oils topically in a diluted form as pure and organic essential oils are highly concentrated liquids and may cause harmful effects if used straight on the skin.

Geranium oil is non-sensitizing, non-toxic and non-irritant but it is good to be avoided during pregnancy. Consult your Ayurvedic physician before choosing the right essential oils for your unique individual constitution and state of health.

The MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) of Geranium oil is readily available for your enhanced safety and better usage.

Gas Chromatography Report (GC analysis) of Geranium oil.

Geranium Essential Oil – Possible Skin Issues:

Greener Life Diamond – Bio-Healthy Score => 3 – Possible Skin Issues.

See => http://www.essentialdepot.com/GreenerLifeDiamond.html

In the midst of the 250 natural species and thousands of cultivars and hybrid varieties of the Pelargonium plant family, in the genus Geraniaceae and the most popular ones are Egyptian Geranium, Reunion or the Geranium Bourbon and the Moroccan varieties. Most of the varieties have a similar structure of chemical constituents with Citronellol and Geraniol being the prevalent components.

Geranium Bourbon essential oil is certified with GRAS (Generally Regarded As Safe) status by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) as Geranium oil is mild and tested safe on individuals on a normal prescribed usage level.

Using Geranium oil in a concentrated form or beyond the safe level of use might cause adverse skin reactions like mild irritation, sensitization (lower risk), rashes, allergy, irritation of the eyes and contact dermatitis. Geranium oil is non-phototoxic in nature.

The primary chemical constituents that are held responsible for the adverse skin reactions of Geranium oil are citronellal and geraniol, where citronellal is reported to exhibit mild irritant effect along with sporadic sensitization and skin irritation and Geraniol is claimed for skin sensitization.

The safe dermal usage level for this oil is 17.5% by IFRA (International Fragrance Association) and this safety report is based on the 30% Geraniol content, which has a maximum dermal limit of 5.3%.

Research reports reveal the skin irritating effect of Reunion Geranium oil in an undiluted manner; this oil was slightly irritating when tested on mouse skin; when tested with 5% Bourbon Geranium oil on 100 repeated dermatitis patients, the result was placid with two irritant reactions. It has also been proved that cosmetics with Geranium oil formula have caused dermatitis in hypersensitive individuals.

Always blend Geranium essential oil in carrier oils like Olive oil, Jojoba oil or Coconut oil before using it topically. This is because organic and pure essential oils are extremely concentrated liquid substances that may impair the skin surface, when used in an undiluted form.

Essential oils are recommended only for external use and never ingest essential oils as it can cause serious health hazards. Administering Geranium oil orally in studies has witnessed acute dermal LD50 in rabbits. This may also cause possible drug interactions with antidiabetic medicines and the enzyme, CYP2B6 inhibiting effect of geraniol causes drug interaction metabolized by CYP2B6.

A recent study has witnessed this by testing alloxan-induced diabetic male rats with Geranium oil for about a month. The level of blood glucose was decreased by glibenclamide and the concentration of hepatic glycogen was significantly augmented.

As there are no evidenced reports on the safety of Geranium oil during pregnancy and lactating, it is safe to avoid this oil for it may have an impact on the hormonal fluctuations during these special moments. It is better to keep away Geranium oil from babies, either as a massage aid or for inhalation as it can harm their sensitive and tender skin.

Reference Links Substantiating the Possible Skin Issues of Geranium Oil:

  1. Geranium by Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals By Robert Tisserand, Rodney Young
  2. Geranium Toxicology by Leung’s Encyclopedia of Common Natural Ingredients, used in Food, Drugs and Cosmetics by Ikhlas A. Khan and Ehab A. Abourashed
  3. Side effects of Geranium oil by Mercola.com
  4. Side effects and Safety of Geranium oil by WebMD

Thought for the day:

The course of Nature is the art of God.  -Edward Young

Suggested Reading:

  1. How to Use Geranium Essential Oil (Aromatherapy) by Miriam Kinai
  2. Growing Pelargoniums and Geraniums: A Complete Guide by Beryl Stockton, Geoff Stockton, John Mason
  3. Geraniums: The Complete Encyclopedia by Faye Brawner
  4. Geranium and Pelargonium: History of Nomenclature, Usage and Cultivation (Medicinal and Aromatic Plants – Industrial Profiles) from CRC Press
  5. Ayurveda & Aromatherapy: The Earth Essential Guide to Ancient Wisdom and Modern Healing by Dr. Light Miller, Dr. Bryan Miller

Reference Links:

  1. Pelargonium graveolens by Wikipedia
  2. The Emotional, physical and health benefits of Geranium Essential Oil by HubPages
  3. Antibacterial activity and composition of essential oils from Pelargonium graveolens L’Her and Vitex agnus-castus L. by Ghannadi A, Bagherinejad M, Abedi D, Jalali M, Absalan B, Sadeghi N, published in PubMed
  4. Geranium by Daniele Ryman for the Aromatherapy Bible
  5. What are the benefits of Geranium oil in Aromatherapy by Yogawiz.com

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