Chamomile Oil German



Chamomile-oil-german-bannerLike a Chamomile bed, the more it is trodden, the more it will spread’, says Shakespeare. With its power to enhance the life force in the body, German Chamomile also known as Blue Chamomile alleviates all kinds of physical and emotional blues. Botanically known as Matricaria Chamomilla, the gentle and grassy aroma of this oil implants calmness in the mind and grants solace to the heart.

Held high across the world for its strongest anti-inflammatory compounds instilling a gentle effect on pain and inflammation, German Chamomile is remembered as one among the best and safest essential oil for people of all ages including children.

Called as Karpurapuspa in Sanskrit and Baboona or Babuna in Hindi, German Chamomile and its essential oil have been used in Ayurveda, the oldest healing methodology of the world as a remedy for itchy skin, dermatitis, menopausal problems, tension, eczema, migraine pain, burns, skin irritation, dysmennorhea, liver congestion, arthritis, PMS, skin inflammation, amenorrhea, anemia, toothache, colic, inflammatory bowel disorders and formation of leukocytes.

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Historical uses and importance of German Chamomile oil:

Chamomile is regarded as one of the oldest herbs used in the history for medicinal purposes. The German variety is indigenous to Nepal and is found all over the world including the temperate zones of Australia, Asia, Europe (Hungary and France) and North America.

This herb is a member of the sunflower or daisy family Asteraceae and is called by other names such as Hungary Chamomile, Blue Chamomile, Matricaria, Scented Mayweed or Wild Chamomile.

The name ‘Matricaria’ has its origin from the Latin name ‘Mater’ meaning ‘Mother’ and is extremely helpful in treating numerous womanly problems. It is regarded as one of the most distinguished herbal teas of the world and nearly one million cups of Chamomile tea are consumed every day.

The most interesting historical reference of this herb dates back to 78 A.D when Europe’s first medical reference book De Materia Medica was written by Dioscorides.

German Chamomile has its name listed in the potent herbs for treating many health conditions and is also listed as one of the most sacred herbs in Lacnunga, the antique manuscript. It is used in herbal medicine as a serene sleep aid, for treating sore stomach, bacterial infections, inflammation, irritable bowel syndrome and as a mild laxative.

German Chamomile has been used as a natural aid for assisting problems related to women especially with its emmenagogue properties that help in relieving from painful menses, delayed menstruation, menopausal problems and as a uterine tonic.

The herbal infusion, decoction or tea prepared from the flowers of German Chamomile was taken in folklore medicine for assisting in cases of motion sickness, vomiting, indigestion, flatulence and ulcerative colitis.

It has been used for numerous centuries in the traditional medicine for treating dermatitis, skin inflammation and gastrointestinal tract symptoms. Dried German Chamomile flowers were used in compress or infusion for alleviating pain and inflammation associated with rheumatism, arthritis and other inflamed conditions.

German Chamomile was prescribed by the Greek physicians for treating female disorders, fever, restlessness, neuralgia, stress and insomnia. It was used as a tenderizing agent for preserving meat in the ancient period.

Chemical constituents and therapeutic properties of German Chamomile oil:

The major chemical components of German Chamomile oil are ‘terpenoids α-bisabolol and its oxide azulenes including chamazulene and acetylene derivatives’ (bisabolol oxide A, bisabolene oxide A, a-bisabolol and bisabolol oxide B) along with farnesol, thujanol, bisabolol, coumarin and farnasene.

The remedial properties of this oil are anti-inflammatory, emmenagogue, immuno-stimulant, anti-anemic, stomachic, anti-allergenic, antiphlogistic, analgesic, bactericidal, anti-spasmodic, vasoconstrictor, antibiotic, carminative, digestive, cicatrisant, vulnerary, cholagogue, hepatic, vermifuge, and sedative.

Ayurvedic health benefits of German Chamomile essential oil:

Ayurveda is the ancient wisdom of healing and it fervently imparts that every human being should follow a disciplined life and must have ample knowledge about his/her health. It is a Vedic science rewarded by the Saints, Sages and Ancient Gods of Hinduism to humanity. Ayurveda simply means knowledge of life (Ayur – Life and Veda – knowledge).

The most predominant factor behind Ayurveda’s existence as a mother of all healing sciences including the Traditional Chinese Medicine, Siddha, Unani, Homeopathy, Acupressure, Naturopathy, Aromatherapy and Chiropractic.

The distinctiveness of Ayurveda is its adherence to Mother Nature, which insists to maintain balance with nature for a healthy and harmonious life. Ayurvedic principles state that living in harmony with nature is the absolute way to heartiness, prevention of illnesses, healthy aging and longevity.

As per the Ayurvedic philosophy, the whole thing on earth is a grouping of the five vital elements of nature namely water, fire, earth, space and air, where water stands for the blood in the body, fire represents the body temperature and metabolic functions, air assists in breathing, earth symbolizes muscles and bones, space or ether signifies the soul.

Every individual is considered as a unique part of nature with a unique individual constitution (the physical, psychological and spiritual make up of a person) just like our fingerprints.

This constitution is an arrangement of three biological energies known as doshas. They are vata, pitta and kapha dosha. Vata is a combination of air and space and is responsible for nervous functions and governs the working of the autonomous and central nervous system.

Kapha is a grouping of water and earth and is in charge for virility, stability, binding power and vigor of the body. Pitta dosha is a blend of fire and water and is accountable for metabolic functions, tissue building, endocrine functions and body temperature.

Every one of us has a predominance of any one of these doshas and this predominant dosha decides our unique persona, temperament and behavioral patterns. Absolute balance between these doshas is a sign of good health and imbalances of these dynamic energies due to food, weather conditions and other lifestyle changes cause illnesses.

Ayurvedic treatments vary from individual to individual even if it is for the same illness because this traditional system observes the individual constitution, medical history of the patient and the root cause of an illness before prescribing the appropriate medicines.

The most established Ayurvedic medications are plant essential oils, herbs, yoga, Abhyanga or Ayurvedic massaging, Ayurvedic routine, simple physical exercises, prayer and meditation based on upon the distinctive individual constitution for correcting the imbalance of doshas.

German Chamomile oil has the potent to pacify aggravated pitta and kapha doshas and balance vata dosha. These amazing healing attributes make German Chamomile oil as an excellent Ayurvedic remedy for treating inflammation, skin irritation, lack of immune power, anemia, amenorrhea, menopause, anger, headache and other female reproductive problems.

Let’s have a look at the key Ayurvedic health benefits of German Chamomile essential oil:

Chamomile-germanbroucher1. Regulates all kinds of menstrual and menopausal mayhems:

German Chamomile essential oil has numerous beneficial effects on the reproductive tissue known as shukra dhatu in Ayurveda. Ancient Ayurvedic texts also say that this herb has therapeutic properties for regulating menstrual activities and is called as artavashamana.

Massaging your lower abdomen and thighs with 2 drops of German Chamomile oil and 2 drops of Lavender oil along with 2 ml of sesame oil can be of great help in relieving menstrual pain or dysmennorhea, premenstrual fatigue and headache, promote menstruation in case of blocked or delayed menses and alleviate all kinds of menstrual discomforts. This massage also serves as a cooling natural remedy to treat the hot flashes, excessive discharge and mood fluctuations during menopause.

German Chamomile tea was prescribed in Ayurveda to lessen pain during childbirth and for easing nausea during pregnancy. Certain studies have proven that Chamomile douche may possibly get better the symptoms of vaginitis or vaginal inflammation in women.

Mostly women of all ages are affected by vaginal inflammation and vaginitis is coupled with pain during urination, itching and vaginal discharge. German Chamomile oil is also effective in treating Atrophic vaginitis also, which occurs due to low estrogen levels in postmenopausal and menopausal women.

2. Relieves skin irritation and supports other skin conditions:

The book on ‘Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects by Philip D. Shenefelt’ states “German chamomile (Matricaria recutita), a member of the daisy family, has been used for centuries, both internally and externally, for treating many conditions, especially gastrointestinal tract symptoms, oral or skin inflammation, as well as dermatitis.”

He also says “The anti-inflammatory, wound-healing, and antimicrobial effects of German chamomile oil are attributed to an essential blue oil that contains sesquiterpene alcohol, α-bisabolol, chamazulene, and flavonoids.”

The relaxing, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and wound healing properties of this oil assists in relieving skin problems rapidly in case of varicose ulcers, wounds, burns, stings, allergies, cystitis, vaginitis, neuralgia and skin ulcers.

Many studies have proved that German Chamomile essential oil has witnessed slight superiority over ” 0.5% hydrocortisone cream in atopic eczema (Patzelt-Wenczler et al 1985), more beneficial than 1% hydrocortisone ointment in the management and healing of peristomal skin lesions in colostomy patients.”

Adding 2 drops of German Chamomile oil along with 2 drops of Rose Geranium oil to bathing water can be helpful in killing germs, bacteria and fungi responsible for skin infections like athlete’s foot, candida, acne, cystitis, Urticaria and dandruff.

This bath also helps in combating the harmful bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus that causes wounds and other skin conditions to turn septic. It also helps in lessening one’s sensitivity to allergens like dust and pollen and aid in treating hay fever, sinusitis, chronic catarrh and eczema.

Massaging the affected areas with 3 drops of German Chamomile oil blended with 2 drops of Sandalwood oil and 3 ml of jojoba oil can help in healing wounds, eczema, psoriasis, varicose ulcers and burns. 2 drops of German Chamomile oil added to a cup of warm water can be used as a gargle for treating gingivitis, plaque, sore throat, mouth ulcer and bad breath.

3. Augments immunity and boosts the vital life force:

German Chamomile oil controls the flow of Life Force, also known as Qi or Chi with its cooling and tranquilizing effect on the system. With its immune enhancing power, this oil assists in preventing infectious diseases by strengthening the disease resistance power of the system.

Since the traditional times, this oil acts as a promising natural remedy for treating almost all kinds of diseases. According to Ayurveda, German Chamomile oil has kasasvasahara or therapeutic properties for alleviating respiratory problems like cough, cold, breathing difficulties, tonsillitis, flu, broncho-constriction in asthma and sinusitis. This oil is also said to have fever lessening properties known as jwaraghna with its power to reduce excess of pitta energy responsible for body temperature.

German Chamomile oil also has other healing properties helpful in relieving gout, eye inflammation, arthritis, conjunctivitis, rheumatism, carpal tunnel syndrome, blepharitis, meibomian cysts, fibromyalgia, lumbago, hepatitis, gallbladder infections, anemia, teething pain, abscesses, viral colitis, Alzheimer’s disease, diaper rashes, nervous tension and certain other health conditions.

4. Controls anger and promotes peaceful sleep:

The essential oil of German Chamomile helps in calming and relaxing the mind and body with its naturally cooling effects. It regulates anger, rage, irritation and aversion caused due to the excess heat in our mechanism. The cooling properties of German Chamomile oil reduce pitta dosha especially sadhaka pitta (pitta in the mind and heart).

Excess of which is responsible for the generation of heat energy in the body. By this way, it pacifies the mind, cools the body and instills gentle and positive feelings from within.

Gently massaging your system with 5 drops of German Chamomile oil blended with 5 drops of Lavender oil and 5 drops of Tea tree oil with 10 ml of coconut oil is an excellent way to keep you cool throughout the day. Adding 1 drop of German Chamomile oil in your handkerchief or a tissue paper and carrying it with you all through the day can help in releasing negative emotions soothingly and induce clarity, improve self-esteem and self-realization.

Adding 2 drops of German Chamomile oil and 2 drops of Rose oil in warm bathing water before going to bed can be of great help in relaxing the tensed nerves, aching muscles and in promoting peaceful sleep. You can also add 2 drops of German Chamomile oil in your diffuser or vaporizer in the bedroom for relieving anxiety and mental agonies.

German Chamomile oil has also been proven in several studies as an efficacious natural remedy for treating GAD or generalized anxiety disorder. Chamomile is widely accepted as gentle tranquilizer and sleep-inducer.

A 2010 study published in PubMed quotes “inhalation of the vapor of chamomile oil reduced a stress-induced increase in plasma adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) levels.” Inhaling the aroma of this oil influences sedative effect in the body by binding the GABA and BDZ receptors in the brain.

Inhaling the herbaceous, intensely sweet and fruity aroma of German Chamomile oil especially during Pranayama (balanced breathing exercise), meditation and prayer enhances our spiritual energy to the next level and augments our soul’s connectedness with the Divine Power.

5. Alleviates pain and inflammation:

German Chamomile essential oil is often trusted to lessen pain, reduce muscular spasms and alleviate gastrointestinal inflammatory problems and other inflammatory disorders. Certain studies reveal that Chamomile restrains Helicobacter pylori, which causes to stomach ulcers. The anti-inflammatory and antiphlogistic activities of German Chamomile are attributed to its chemical components like matricin, alpha-bisabolol oxides A and B, and alpha-bisabolol.

A research tested on human volunteers with Chamomile essential oil states “Chamomile flavonoids and essential oils penetrate below the skin surface into the deeper skin layers. This is important for their use as topical antiphlogistic (anti-inflammatory) agents.”

This oil has excellent diuretic properties, known as mutrala in Ayurveda and helps in relieving urinary infections, inflammation in the bladder and other kidney infections along with eliminating the toxic deposits in the system.

Massage the painful or inflamed parts with 3 drops of German Chamomile oil blended with 3 drops of Yarrow oil also known as Yara Yara oil with 5 ml of coconut oil to alleviate pain, mitigate spasms, reduce inflammation, promote blood circulation and eliminate toxic substances in the system and lessen water retention, leading to obesity, rheumatism, arthritis etc.

6. Treats diarrhea and other gastrointestinal problems:

Both German Chamomile and Roman Chamomile have been used as a traditional remedy for treating colic, especially in children, diarrhea, stomach cramps, gas, intestinal spasms, irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion, stomach ulcers and gastrointestinal disorders. German Chamomile oil is known as a digestive relaxant that helps in soothing the muscles, relaxing the stomach and leaves a gentle effect on the intestines, to help in pacifying stomach ulcers, flatulence, anorexia, diarrhea, bloating, intestinal gas and morning sickness.

Massaging your abdomen gently with 2 drops of German Chamomile oil and 2 drops of Peppermint oil along with 2 ml of almond oil can help in relaxing muscular contractions in the stomach and intestines along with reducing excess of digestive fire or pitta energy causing diarrhea and painful ulcers.

The gentle and cooling effect of German Chamomile oil along with the cool minty effect of Peppermint oil gradually reduces pain in the stomach and intestines and grants peaceful sleep especially in children who suffer from colic.

Disclaimer:

This information is only for educational purposes and is expressed wholly in the concern of spreading the cultural wisdom of Ayurveda, the mother of all healing sciences. The remedies listed in this article are not intended to prevent, cure or diagnose any medical condition or as an alternate for any kind of prescription remedies or any medical advice of a healthcare professional.

Internal use of essential oils is strictly not recommended. Ensure that you dilute essential oils in suitable carrier oils before you use it on the skin topically, as high quality, unadulterated and organic essential oils are extremely concentrated substances and may cause allergic reactions if used on the skin directly.

Speak with your Ayurvedic professional/healthcare expert before choosing the appropriate essential oils for your unique individual constitution and state of health. Avoid using German Chamomile oil if you are pregnant or nursing your baby, because this oil has high emmenagogue properties that may induce menstruation.

Thought for the day:

The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be.

-Anne Frank

Suggested Reading:

  1. Chamomile: Medicinal, Biochemical, and Agricultural Aspects (Traditional Herbal Medicines for Modern Times) by Moumita Das
  2. Chamomile: Industrial Profiles (Medicinal and Aromatic Plants – Industrial Profiles) from CRC Press
  3. Surviving When Modern Medicine Fails: A definitive guide to essential oils that could save your life during a crisis by Dr. Scott A. Johnson
  4. The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils: The Science of Advanced Aromatherapy by Kurt Schnaubelt Ph.D.
  5. Ayurveda & Aromatherapy: The Earth Essential Guide to Ancient Wisdom and Modern Healing by Dr. Light Miller, Dr. Bryan Miller

Reference Links:

  1. Matricaria chamomilla by Wikipedia
  2. German Chamomile by The University of Maryland Medical Center
  3. Chamomile: A herbal medicine of the past with bright future by Janmejai K Srivastava, Eswar Shankar,and Sanjay Gupta, Department of Urology & Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio published in PubMed
  4. Chamomilla recutita – German Chamomile: Western and Ayurvedic Perspectives from Positive Health Online
  5. Herbal Treatment for Dermatologic Disorders Philip D. Shenefelt published in PubMed

Celery Seed Oil



‘Quick acting’ is the meaning of the word Celeri, the Latin origin of the name Celery. Well identified as one of the prime ingredient of the Holy Trinity of Louisiana Creole and Cajun cuisine, Celery is a renowned herb known to the Chinese as early as the 5th century and was used in Indian Ayurvedic medicine earlier than that.

Celery-seed-oil-bannerBelonging to the Umbelliferae plant family, it is botanically called as Apium graveolens. Celery seed oil is obtained from the dried Celery seeds by the steam distillation method.

Called as Ajamoda in Ayurveda, Celery seed have been used for thousands of years in treating neurological afflictions, poor digestion, influenza, water retention, high blood pressure, insomnia, arthritis, rheumatism, cold, flu, bronchitis, hepatitis, gout, stone formation in gall bladder or kidneys, asthma, arthritis, dizziness and other ailments related to spleen and liver.

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Historical uses and importance of Celery Seed and its essential oil:

Well known to the contemporary world as a vegetable, Celery owes its nativity to the lowland of Italy and it gradually spread to other parts of the world like Egypt, Ethiopia, Algeria and India. It is often referred to its use in the New Kingdom of Egypt around 1000 B.C.

Celery was held high as a sacred herb during the Greek era and was used in crowns by the athletes. Few sources state that Celery leaves were found in the garland of the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun who died in 1323 BC. It is also mentioned in numerous classical works, one being Homer’s Iliad where the horses of the Myrmidons were said to graze on the wild Celery in Troy.

Aulus Cornelius Celsus, the eminent Roman encyclopaedist well known for his invaluable work in the field of medicine has mentioned about the use of Celery seeds in pills for relieving pain, in his work De Medicina, which is the only existing section of the whole of encyclopedia. Celery seeds were used as a traditional remedy by Hippocrates and was globally used as an effective diuretic in treating cold, arthritis, flu and digestive disorders.

The German Commission E prescribes Celery for treating gout, gastrointestinal problems, loss of appetite, exhaustion, weight loss from malnutrition and rheumatism and it was used in Britain in the 19th century for treating rheumatic conditions.

The juices extracted from the petioles were used in the treatment of edema, rheumatic tendencies, gout, flatulence, overweight due to water retention and lack of appetite. Moreover the petiole which is crisp is also used as a vegetable worldwide.

Chemical constituents and therapeutic properties of Celery Seed oil:

With limonene as the major chemical component Celery seed oil consist of a-p-dimethyl styrene, N-pertyl benzene , caryophyllene, a-selinene, N-butyl phthalide, sedanenolide, sabinene, b-elemne, trans-1 2-epoxy limonene, linalool, isovalaric acid, cis-dihydrocarvone, trans-dihydrocarvone, trepinene-4-ol, 1-cis –p-menth-2,8-diene-1-ol, trans-p-menth-2, 8-diene-1-ol, alpha-terpineol, luteolin, carvone, trans-8-diene 1-ol,perialdehyde, apiin and thymol.

It also serves as an eminent nutritional supplement rich in Vitamin A, B, C & E, carbohydrate, protein, iron, potassium, water, fat, fiber, sodium, zinc, phosphorus, magnesium and calcium with traces of niacin, riboflavin and thiamine.

The therapeutic properties of Celery seed oil are aphrodisiac, anthelmintic, antispasmodic, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, laxative, sedative, cardiac-stimulant, antiseptic, anti-emetic, diaphoretic, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, mosquitocidal, nematicidal, anti-bacterial, stomachic, nervine and tonic.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Celery seed oil:

Illness, aging and death are the three major problems of mankind and have been drawing the interests of medical experts, researchers, and philosophers from the entire universe for innumerable years. Ayurveda, the mother of all healing sciences on earth exists for more than 5,000 years and it uses natural remedies for attaining longevity through prevention of diseases and a disciplined lifestyle.

Ayurvedic healing practices were recorded in the Vedic literature and Ayurvedic texts like Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita. Charaka, known as the father of medicine has mentioned in his book Charaka Samhita that “The three – body, psyche, and soul – act as a tripod. The world stands upon them, and within them, the world abides.” This traditional remedial science robustly states that perfect health is a combination of physical, mental and spiritual wellness.

The science of Ayurveda considers human body as a temple and associates the divinity with the soul that dwells within the body. According to this ancient system, everything in the universe is a part of nature and is made up of the five elemental forces of nature, namely fire, water, air, earth and space.

Every individual is a unique creation with a unique individual constitution that holds three vital biological energies known as doshas. These energies are just a consequential depiction of the elements of nature.

Vata energy is an arrangement of air and space and is accountable for circulation, respiration and movement and vitiation of vata dosha causes breathing difficulties, neurological problems, nervous disorders, and menstrual discomforts.

Fire and water come together to embody Pitta dosha, which is in charge of metabolism and body temperature. Excess or deficit of pitta dosha might end up in constipation, fever, ulcer, indigestion, heartburn and other digestive disorders.

Kapha energy stands for earth and water and is responsible for the physical structure, movement of fluids and sustenance of the body. Surplus or deficiency of kapha dosha leads to sluggishness, obesity, respiratory problems, rheumatism and inflammatory conditions.

Ayurvedic philosophy states that the balance between these three doshas according to their natural composition contributes to well-being and imbalance of any one or all the three doshas causes sickness.

Ayurvedic remedies focus on treating the doshic imbalances with the help of essential oils, yoga, herbs, meditation, Ayurvedic routine, Ayurvedic massaging or Abhyanga, prayers, Panchakarma or detoxification techniques and simple physical exercises. These remedies differ from individual to individual on the basis of their unique individual constitution and medical conditions.

Celery seed oil with its hot, easy, light, pungent and dry properties is known for increasing pitta and vata dosha and for pacifying kapha types.

The Ayurvedic health benefits of Celery seed essential oil are:

celery-broucher21. Flushes out toxic substances and cleanses the system:

Surplus of kapha energy is responsible for water retention, stagnation of fluids, salt, toxins, uric acid, bad cholesterol and fat in the body. Celery seed oil is a promising Ayurvedic remedy for pacifying kapha dosha and thus it helps in eliminating toxins and other excess fluid deposits stagnated in the body through urine and sweat.

Along with this, the presence of Phthalides such as 3-n-Butylpthalide makes Celery seed oil as a potent diuretic that aids in flushing out toxins and fluid retention from the system and alleviates the symptoms of bloating.

As a natural stimulant, it stimulates the kidney to function actively in discharging excess water along with uric acid, fatty acids and other harmful substances that pave way to the formation of kidney stones, gravel and bladder stones.

Dirt or toxic deposits even in a smaller proportion in the system can result in malfunctioning of both the internal and the external organs. Liver plays a major role in eliminating the toxins from the body and is often prone to get affected seriously if the level of toxins is high. Celery seed oil is liver friendly and protects it against the harmful effects of acetaminophen (Tylenol) found in pain relievers, which are extremely poisonous when present in large amount and other hazardous particles.

Rheumatism is often a kapha imbalance caused due to the amassing of toxins, excess fluid, uric acid, salt and fatty acids especially in the joints. Massaging the affected parts or your entire body with 20 drops of Celery seed oil blended with 10 ml of coconut oil can assist in decreasing water retention, uric acid, toxins and other harmful particles in the system, thus helpful in the treatment of inflammation, overweight, rheumatoid arthritis, kidney infections, liver disorders and hypertension.

2. Acts as an excellent mosquito repellent:

Mosquitoes often act as vectors for numerous infectious viruses and parasites. With its mosquitocidal, nematicidal and antifungal compounds such as sedanolide, senkyunolide-N and senkyunolide-J, Celery seed oil acts as a tremendous mosquito repellent.

Many studies have revealed that Celery seed essential oil emitted strong repellency activity against wide range of mosquitoes belonging to various genera some of which are Aedes gardnerii, Aedes lineatopennis, Armigeres subalbatus, Culex tritaeniorhynchus, Cx. vishnui group, Cx. Quinquefasciatus, Mansonia uniformis and Aedes aegypti – the vector of yellow fever, dengue fever and chikungunya.

Celery seed oil exhibits larvicidal and adulticidal repellent activities against Aedes aegypti which was identified by the toxic effect of this oil in the nervous system of the mosquito producing an abnormal movement in the larvae. This attribute makes this oil to be the safe and natural mosquito repellent than most other commercial repellents in the market.

Applying 2 drops of Celery seed oil blended with 1 ml of jojoba oil or your skin care cream or lotion on your skin can act as a protective shield against mosquitoes and guard you from mosquito-borne pathogens such as dengue, malaria, filariasis and tularemia. It is proven to be safe on human beings with no dermatological side effect during the course of research on the human volunteers.

3. Protects you against inflammation:

Celery seed oil is a natural remedy for inflammation associated with pain and discomfort, be it an acute or a chronic one. With apiin as one of its major component, it possesses anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory and kapha pacifying properties in-charge for inflamed conditions. Apiin has the potential of inhibiting the production of nitric oxide that acts as one of the inflammatory mediators.

Chemical components such as luteolin, limonene, apigenin, phthalides and coumarin possess very strong anti-inflammatory properties that help in fighting against inflammation in any part of the body and assist in reducing the risk of ailments such as heart diseases and cancer.

This attribute along with the diuretic property of Celery seed oil helps in recovering from the symptoms of gout and rheumatoid arthritis as mentioned by Michael T. Murray and Joseph E. Pizzorno in their book “The Encyclopedia of Healing foods”.

Celery Seed oil proves beneficial in dealing with the discomfort and degeneration the body joints due to aging. Gentle massage with 5 drops of Celery seed oil mixed with 2.5 ml of olive oil is recommended to ease the pain in joints due to arthritis and this also aids in retaining healthy joints.

Adding 3 drops of Celery seed oil in warm bathing water or in foot bath also helps in reducing the inflammation in the urinary tract and as a natural anti-fungal agent it destroys and inhibits the growth of Candida albicans that cause oral and genital infection in humans, for which this is used as an active ingredient in many urinary antiseptic products.

4. Relieves hypertension:

Celery seed oil serves as a natural vasorelaxant and anti-hypertensive agent that protects one from the risk of developing some fatal diseases associated with hypertension. Few among them are diabetes, endothelial dysfunction, renal dysfunction, congestive heart failure, metabolic syndrome, coronary artery disease and stroke.

The presence of chemical components such as apigenin, luteolin, kaempferol, caffeic acid, ferulic acid and coumaric acid instill a relaxant effect in the central nervous system and helps in lowering hypertension.

Owing to its nervine qualities, Celery seed oil is vastly employed in treating nervousness, depression, anxiety and tension. It also serves as a wonderful antidote for alcoholism. With limonene acting as a mild tranquilizer, Celery seed oil works wonders with insomnia and addiction to alcohol or drug usage. Massage your system with 10 drops of this oil blended in 5 ml of almond oil, followed by a warm bath diluted with 3 drops of Celery oil and 2 drops added to diffuser to relieve hypertension and grant absolute relaxation.

5. Lowers blood pressure:

Celery seed oil contains apigenin and isoquerticin that aid in lowering the blood pressure by stimulating the expansion of blood vessels. The combination of several active components such as flavonoids, volatile oil, coumarins and linoleic acid contributes to the anti-oxidant property of Celery seed oil.

This helps in protecting the cells from being damaged and purifies the blood resulting in lowering the blood pressure and controlling the level of bad cholesterol in the blood. Adding 3 drops of Celery seed oil in warm bathing water and inhaling the tranquilizing aroma of this oil by adding 2 drops to your burner, vaporizer or diffuser can serve as a potent aid for lowering blood pressure.

6. Helps in alleviating gastric ulcer and other digestive problems:

The essential oil of Celery seed has excellent pitta increasing properties that stimulate Agni or the digestive fire responsible for trouble-free metabolic functions. This contributes to the stomachic and anti-ulcerogenic attributes of Celery seed oil, which imparts a soothing effect on the digestive system and assists in alleviating flatulence, indigestion, heartburn and poor appetite.

As a natural source of organic sodium, Celery seed oil is much protective in forming a defensive shield for the lining of the stomach and intestines. A 2010 research on the gastric anti-ulcer activity of Celery seed in rats states that the Celery extracts rich in flavonoids and alkaloids protected the stomach by protecting the gastric mucosa and suppressing the basal gastric secretion.

Moreover Celery essential oil is an antimicrobial agent that possess strong inhibition against bacteria such as Escherichia coli and fungus such as Candida albicans thus protecting the intestines from the infectious microbes and parasites.

Massaging your abdomen with 3 drops of Celery seed oil with 1.5 ml coconut oil can help in improving metabolism. 2 drops of this oil added to diffuser or burner can help in enhancing the appetite and 2 drops added to 1 cup of warm water can be used as a gargle for curbing oral infections and killing parasites and microbes in the stomach and intestines.

7. Eases feminine health mayhem:

Celery seed oil is in rich vitamins and minerals that help in regulating the flow of blood all over the body and assists in strengthening the muscles of the uterus. It helps in stimulating uterine contraction and induces menstruation, while reducing the pain and discomforts associated with it. This oil also regularizes the monthly menstrual cycle.

Being a rich source of calcium, Celery seed oil helps in the maintenance of healthy bones and teeth and aids in proper muscular contractions and alleviates the adverse impacts of osteoporosis after menopause. 5 drops of Celery oil mixed with 2.5 ml sesame oil can be massaged gently on your lower abdomen, genital parts and thighs for promoting delayed or blocked menstruation, reducing pain, treating menopausal problems and lessening fatigue and mood swings associated with menopause and menstruation.

Few studies also state that Celery seed oil may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer and breast cancer with its antioxidant properties. It helps in balancing the acid/ alkaline system in the body and aids in preventing cancer by reversing the effect of free radicals and inducing apoptosis in case of gastric, liver, colon, cervical and prostate cancer cells of human beings.

Other health benefits of Celery seed oil:

Celery seed oil acts as an aphrodisiac in stimulating the secretion of sexual hormones. Due to its sweet and earthy aroma it is often used in salads, soups and sauces. It is also employed in skin care to treat acne, scars and boils and in treating acute headaches, cold, flu, pyorrhea, anemia, mental stress, sleeplessness etc.

Due to its antibacterial, antifungal and mosquito repellent properties, this oil is used in the manufacturing of disinfectants, antiseptic creams and lotions, mosquito repellent creams, soaps and perfumes.

Disclaimer:

This article is only for the purpose of education and is not proposed to treat, prevent or make a diagnosis of any ailment or medical condition. Nor is it meant to substitute any prescribed medication or professional medical advice. We are not medical professionals and this information is only for the purpose of enlightening the readers with the ancient wisdom or knowledge of life known as Ayurveda.

Do not take essential oils internally and always use them in a diluted manner for topical use, as organic and pure essential oils are highly concentrated substances. Keep out of reach of children and it is always good to do a small patch test on your skin with the diluted essential oil. Pregnant women are not advised to use this oil as it stimulates and contracts the uterus and may result in miscarriage. Consult your healthcare expert or your Ayurvedic practitioner before choosing the right essential oils for your medical condition and prakriti or unique individual constitution.

Thought for the day:

We still do not know one thousandth of one percent of what nature has revealed to us.   -Albert Einstein

Suggested Reading:

  1. The Healing Remedies Sourcebook: Over 1000 Natural Remedies to Prevent and Cure Common Ailments by C. Norman Shealy
  2. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils: The Complete Guide to the Use of Oils in Aromatherapy & Herbalism by Julia Lawless
  3. The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils: The Science of Advanced Aromatherapy by Kurt Schnaubelt Ph.D.
  4. ISO 3760:2002, Oil of celery seed (Apium graveolens L.) by ISO/TC 54

Reference Links:

  1. Celery by Wikipedia
  2. The pharmacognostical ad pharmacological characterization of Apium Graveolens by Syed Sufiyan Fazal and Rajeev K Singla published in the 2012 Indo Global Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  3. The Mosquito repellency of the seeds of Celery (Apium graveolens L.) published in PubMed
  4. The extract of Apium graveolens: structure of the major constituent, apiin, and its anti-inflammatory properties published in PubMed

Caraway Oil



Caraway-bannerWhich Ayurvedic oil ‘warms the kidneys’ and ‘moves the liver’? Ah! Wait! Wait! Don’t panic, it is Caraway essential oil that has the potent to cleanse the liver, detoxify the system and discharge toxins, salt, uric acid and excess fluid deposits in the system through urine.

Also known as Persian cumin, Meridian fennel and Shahi jeera, Caraway is one among the 3000 species of plants of the Umbelliferae family dispersed throughout the world. The essential oil is extracted from the dried seeds through steam distillation method.

The Sanskrit name of Caraway is karavi and it is one among the oldest culinary herb used in Ayurvedic healing since the Stone Age. Caraway and its essential oil is being used in Ayurveda for treating diarrhea, dyspepsia, flatulence, morning sickness, colic, dyspeptic headache, bloating, cold, cough, rheumatism, inflammation, delayed menstruation, genitourinary problems, anemia, obesity and hormonal imbalances.

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Historical uses of Caraway and its essential oil:

Indigenous to Western Asia, Europe and Northern Africa, Caraway is botanically called as Carum carvi. The roots of the Caraway herb were mixed with milk and used in the preparation of Chara – the bread that was taken by Julius Caesar and his soldiers of Valerius.

Caraway has been carved in the ancient scriptures and gained esteem during the middle ages. The recent research from Arabic regional studies recommend “Carum carvi use as an endocrine function support agent, specifically related to thyroid disorders and auto immune disease.”

Parkinson mentions its healing attributes in one of his works which quotes Caraway ‘is much used to be put among baked fruit, or into bread, cakes, etc., to give them a relish. It is also made into comfits and taken for cold or wind in the body, which also are served to the table with fruit.’

It was a tradition to serve a saucer full of Caraway with roasted apple and is still kept in Trinity College, London. Caraway seeds were used as the best condiment in Greece, Rome, Russia, Norway and Sweden. Caraway essential oil is used as an active ingredient in the preparation of alcoholic liquors. It is also used in the Traditional Chinese Medicine for treating hiccups, hernia, lower back pain, lack of appetite and nausea.

The Ebers Papyrus of the African medicine, dated 1500 B.C. prescribe Caraway for treating gastrointestinal problems. People in the primeval period believed that the presence of Caraway in any object will be protected from theft. It was also used in love potions to keep the lovers away from wandering and was given to pigeons and other fowls to keep them away from straying.

Alleged to be first used by the ancient Arabs, Caraway seeds are used in Arabic medicine as a carminative for children and to treat psychological conditions such as hysteria. It is used as a diuretic to treat hypertension and diabetes in Moroccan traditional medicine. Caraway water is used as a medium for pediatric medicines and vapors obtained from Caraway seeds is trusted to alleviate rheumatism and lumbago.

Chemical constituents and therapeutic properties of Caraway essential oil:

Owing major similarities to the other members of the Apiaceae (also known as Umbelliferae) family, Caraway essential oil have carvone and limonene as its major components and the other constituents are carvacrol, α-pinene, γ-terpinene, linalool, furfurol, thujone, carvenone, and p-cymene.

Caraway also serves as a rich source of fatty acids, lignin, vitamins, amino acids, polysaccharides, triacylglycerols and numerous minerals such as copper, potassium, manganese, magnesium, calcium, selenium, zinc and iron.

Caraway essential oil has been in use since antiquity for its countless therapeutic properties like carminative, astringent, antispasmodic, eupeptic, antihistaminic, antiseptic, aperitif, antimicrobial, disinfectant, emmenagogue, expectorant, stimulant, stomachic, digestive, insecticide, diuretic, galactogogue, cardiac, antioxidant, anti-diabetic, anti-ulcerogenic, anti-carcinogenic, anti-stress and vermifuge.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Caraway essential oil:

Ayurveda is the oldest healing sciences known to the world and is said to have been in practice for more than 5,000 years. The most notable thing about Ayurveda is that its healing practices are recorded systematically in the form of literature.

Among the 4 major sacred books of the Indian Mythology, Atharvana Veda records the Ayurvedic therapies and about 114 verses of this sacred book shares the symptoms and diagnostic techniques of numerous health disorders.

Ayurveda is a holistic healing methodolgy that treats the individual instead of the symptoms and traces the root cause of an illness. By this way, this ancient common sense science focuses on prevention of illnesses leading through healthy aging process to longevity.

Based on the Vedic references of Ayurveda, two ancient Ayurvedic texts were written by the legendary Ayurvedic physicians known as Charaka and Sushruta, who wrote Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita.

These Ayurvedic encyclopedias states that everything is a part of nature and the human body is a combination of the five elements known as Panchamaha Bhoothas, namely fire, water, earth, air and space.

Every person is made up of a unique individual constitution that consists of three dynamic energies known as doshas (vata -air & space, pitta – fire & water and kapha -water & earth), which are a combination of the elemental forces of nature.

For a person to be hale and healthy, these doshas should always remain in a specific ratio as set by nature and any change in the functioning or the balance between these doshas cause illnesses. Imbalance of these biological energies mainly occurs due to food habits (mainly depending on the quality of the food taken), change in weather conditions and lifestyle changes.

Ayurvedic remedies like plant essential oils, herbs, yoga, meditation, prayers, Abhyanga or art of Ayurvedic massaging, Panchakarma or the detox technique and Ayurvedic routine are recommended based on the Prakriti or the unique individual constitution of a person and for correcting the imbalances of dosha.

Caraway essential oil has the potent to reduce kapha and vata doshas and increase pitta dosha, making its use inevitable in the treatment of respiratory problems, skin disorders, spasms, cramps, bloating and other digestive disorders.

The Ayurvedic health benefits of Caraway essential oil are:caraway-broucher-info1. Combats the growth of free radicals:

Caraway essential oil serves as an effective antioxidant with its rich content of monoterpene alcohols, linalool, flavonoids and other polyphenolic compounds. This helps in destroying and inhibiting the growth of free radicals, which are responsible for cellular oxidation.

Certain scientific studies conclude that the dietary supplementation of Caraway to rats induced with colon cancer suppressed the crypt foci development and decreased the level of fecal bile acids and alkaline phosphatase which affects the epithelial cells of the colon and the rectum if not kept under control. The presence of carvone and limonene helps in reducing the lipid peroxidation products of the intestines and the colon.

Moreover the chemical compounds such as anethofuran, carvone and limonene are potential cancer chemo-preventive agents that build a protective shield against various mutagens such as dimethylnitrosamine, nitrosodimethlyamine, methylazoxymethanol acetate and inhibit the development of stomach cancers in mice induced by diethylsitosamine.

The antioxidant property of Caraway essential oil also makes it an efficient anti-carcinogenic, apoptotic, anti-proliferative and anti-mutagenic agent. As an apoptotic, Caraway essential oil proves fruitful against human leukemia cells and it also anti-proliferates the tumor cells.

Massaging your body with 10 drops of Caraway oil blended with 5 ml of Coconut oil can help in controlling the growth of free radicals and enhance the immune power of the system to shield against the harmful effects of the cancerous cells.

2. Makes you free from toxins:

Caraway essential oil serves as an excellent detoxifier, which assists in promoting active metabolism and excretion of harmful toxins or ama in the body. A 2007 research on the diuretic effect of Caraway essential oil on normal rats states that it increased the frequency and quantity of urine in a 24 hour period. It increased the level of sodium and potassium in the urine while that of the plasma remained unchanged.

Adding 2 to 3 drops of Caraway oil in warm bathing water or in a massage blend with 10 drops of this oil mixed with 5 ml of olive oil helps in excreting the toxins, fats, uric acid, salt and excess fluid deposits with ease. By this way, Caraway oil aids in alleviating hypertension, promoting weight loss and treating inflammation caused due to water retention.

Ayurvedic texts adore Caraway seed oil as a liver-friendly oil that support in protecting the liver from the encountering of highly toxic substances. In addition to this, its antimicrobial attribute clears out urinary tract infections. Caraway essential oil is a great source of dietary fiber.

3. Aids in proper digestion:

Caraway essential oil has been in use since the prehistoric period for its pitta-enhancing properties that stimulates the Agni or digestive fire, secretion of gastric and digestive juices. This attribute is responsible for the carminative, digestive and stomachic properties of Caraway oil. Its flavonoids, fatty acids and triacylglycerols help in reducing inflammation in the intestines and relieving smooth muscle contractions induced by spasmogens.

With flavonoids and monoterpene alcohols acting as natural stimulants, Caraway essential oil regulates the secretion of the digestive enzymes and its rich mineral content aid in complete absorption of the dietary nutrients. It raises the temperature of the body and speed up the process of metabolism thus preventing constipation and it helps in regulating the bowel movements.

A 2011 study on the various healing attributes of Caraway essential oil proves the antibacterial activity of this oil against gram negative bacteria such as helicobacter pylori which is identified as the primary etiological factor associated with the onset of various gastrointestinal ailments such as gastric carcinoma, gastritis and peptic ulcer. It blends well with Peppermint oil in treating non-ulcer dyspepsia, irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion and other gastrointestinal disorders.

Inhaling the refreshing aroma of Caraway oil by adding 2 drops of this oil in diffuser or burner along with massaging your abdomen with 5 drops of Caraway oil blended with 2.5 ml of sesame oil can effectively treat diarrhea, flatulence, vomiting, morning sickness, dyspepsia, heartburn due to indigestion, gastrointestinal disorders, stomachic ulcers, intestinal worms and parasites and colic.

Carvone which owes the credit of the anti-inflammatory attribute of Caraway essential oil actively reduces the production of prostaglandin and increases the production of leukotriene thus helping in alleviating colic for which reason Caraway seeds boiled in hot water was used in treating infants with colic. As an effective antimicrobial agent, Caraway oil destroys the harmful microbes in the stomach and inhibits the growth of intestinal pathogens.

4. Alleviates menstrual discomforts and other womanly problems: 

Caraway essential oil has reproductive and estrogenic parameters due to the presence of flavonoids and apigenin. It increases and regulates the secretion of estrogen. Moreover it’s rich iron, calcium and vitamin content stimulates the secretion of hemoglobin and regulates  blood flow to the uterus.

Massaging your lower abdomen, genital area and thighs with 5 drops of Caraway oil blended with 2.5 ml of Almond oil aids in opening up blocked menstruation and alleviates menstrual irregularities, dysmennorhea, menstrual cramps and associated mood swings. It relaxes the uterus and helps in its contraction facilitating the process of child birth before delivery.

Furthermore this oil possesses galactogogue properties, where the mammary glands are induced and the secretion of milk in lactating mothers is increased. Nursing mothers who use Caraway essential oil benefits their baby as well from colic and other stomachic discomforts.

5. Relieves common cold and other respiratory infections:

Common cold and certain other respiratory problems are often known as the most annoying ailments of mankind of all ages.

According to Ayurveda, excess of Kapha element in the body cause water retention, formation of mucus and phlegm deposits in the body. As a natural kapha reducing agent, Caraway essential oil can help in clearing off the phlegm and mucus secretion that often obstruct the nasal passages and block the respiratory tract.

Being a natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal agent, Caraway essential oil destroys all the harmful microbes that cling onto the respiratory tract resulting in infections and huge deposits of mucus and phlegm. Carvone, limonene and linalool play a major role in destroying the infectious microbes and hold antihistamine properties that calm down the muscles causing coughing spasms.

2 to 3 drops of Caraway oil added to steam inhalation along with the gentle massaging of your chest, throat and back with 2 drops of this oil mixed in your regular decongesting ointment or rub can help in loosening the deposits of mucus and phlegm, aid in its excretion and reduce the symptoms of bronchitis, laryngitis and sore throat.

6. Alleviates skin disorders:

Caraway essential oil is a powerful antiseptic that helps in treating acne, boils, scabies and itches. It is used in cleansing the wounds as it destroys the presence of micro-organisms and prevents it from spreading and becoming septic, thus protecting one from the onset of tetanus with its anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.

Carvone and limonene components present in Caraway oil have enormous anti-oxidant properties that strengthen the connective tissues and confer potent effects on aging symptoms and clears out wrinkles, lessens the sagging of skin and aids in tissue regeneration. This oil is also used in the manufacturing of skin care lotions, creams and ointments for reducing wrinkles and acne.

Rich in vitamins and minerals such as potassium, calcium, iron, manganese, selenium and zinc, Caraway essential oil helps in regulating the growth and development of cells and aids in improved natural complexion of the skin. Mix 2 drops of Caraway oil with 1 ml of Coconut oil or your mild skin care cream or lotion and gently massage on your skin in circular movements for visible results.

7. Instills tranquility:

Caraway essential oil serves as a boon to mankind with its pleasing aroma and its therapeutic compounds that have a soothing effect on the mind and instills feelings of trust and harmony. It acts as a tonic for the nerves and encourages positive thoughts in a person and eases the mental strain while making one to feel full of life and energy.

The best way to use Caraway essential oil for emotional benefits is to add 2 drops of this oil in burner, vaporizer, diffuser, aromatic candles or your pillow cover for boosting up your system and revitalizing you from within.

Other health benefits of Caraway oil:

Caraway essential oil is also used in treating rheumatism, toothaches, eye infections and inflammations. It is used as a flavoring agent in mouth-wash, gargle preparations, toothpastes, soaps, lotions, perfumes and incense sticks. It also serves as an insecticide and a potential natural fumigant for stored products. With its strong yet pleasing aroma it refreshes your breath and hence used in the manufacturing of mouth fresheners, toothpastes and other oral care products.

Disclaimer:

This is only for educational use and is not meant to prevent or diagnose any health condition or substitute any prescribed medication or professional medical advice. This information is shared only with the concern of highlighting the importance of Ayurvedic healing, the traditional wisdom of holistic remedy and we are not medical professionals. Do not use essential oils internally.

Ensure that you dilute essential oils in appropriate carrier oils before using it externally on the skin as pure and organic essential oils are highly concentrated substances. It is advisable to consult your Ayurvedic professional/ healthcare expert before choosing the appropriate essential oil for your state of health and unique individual constitution.

Thought for the day:

Joy in looking and comprehending is nature’s most beautiful gift. -Albert Einstein

Suggested Reading:

  1. Caraway: The Genus Carum (Medicinal and Aromatic Plants – Industrial Profiles) from CRC Press
  2. Aromatherapy for the Soul: Healing the Spirit with Fragrance and Essential Oils by Valerie Ann Worwood
  3. The Nursing Mother’s Herbal (The Human Body Library) by Sheila Humphrey

Reference Links:

  1. Caraway by Wikipedia
  2. Essential oil content in Caraway species (Carum carvi) by J.Sedlakovai, B. Kicourkova, L. Lojkovai and V.Kubani of the Mendel University of Agriculture and Forestry, Czech Republic
  3. Cuminum Cyminum and Carum carvi by R.K. Johri published in PubMed
  4. The effects of Carum carvi L. (Caraway) extract and essential oil on TNBS-induced colitis in rats published in PubMed