Myrtle Essential Oil



Myrtle-bannerAcclaimed as the “Queen of the lemon herbs”, Lemon Myrtle often called as just Myrtle seldom fails to enchant your mind and senses with its refreshing citrus aroma that is more lemony than lemon itself. This is because lemon has only 3-10% citral content while Lemon Myrtle contains about 90-98% citral, contributing to its unique, uplifting lemony fragrance.

Scientifically known as Backhousia citriodora, the essential oil is extracted from the aromatic leaves and twigs of this plant. Celebrated as a natural antiseptic and decongestant, Myrtle herb and its essential oil are used in the treatment of respiratory problems, infectious diseases and neurological disorders in Ayurveda.

Purchase Myrtle Oil – Retail – 4 oz – CLICK HERE

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Historical importance of Myrtle:

Native to Australia, Lemon myrtle is one among the few favorite Australian essential oils and it is said that the Indigenous Australians used Lemon myrtle as a remedial and culinary herb. The ancient Egyptians used the leaves of this plant to treat fever and other infections. Myrtle has been mentioned in the Greek mythology as a symbol of love and divine generosity. It was considered sacred to the Greek Goddesses Demeter and Aphrodite.

Myrtle is also said to have been mentioned in the Bible directly for about six times. In Isaiah 41:19 it is said “I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the shittah tree, and the myrtle, and the oil tree; I will set in the desert the fir tree, and the pine, and the box tree together.” Greek physician Dioscorides recommended Myrtle oil for his patients to treat bladder and lung infections. This herb has also been in use in many traditions for treating respiratory tract ailments and skin disorders.

Therapeutic properties and chemical constituents of Myrtle essential oil:

Lemon myrtle essential oil has analgesic, antiseptic, anticonvulsant, antimicrobial, expectorant, tonic, antifungal, decongestant, sedative, anti-neuralgic, astringent and anti-rheumatic properties. The major chemical components are terpenoid aldehydes like citral, geranial and neral along with the trace constituents linalool, methyl-heptenone, d-isopulegol, myrcene, cyclocitral and citronellal.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Myrtle essential oil:

Ayurveda is a holistic healing principle that trusts on nature and natural remedies for treating human illnesses. This ancient philosophy states that human beings are part of nature and their illness and wellness depend upon their body’s balance with nature. Sickness according to the Ayurvedic texts is a signal indicating that the human body is out of balance with nature.

Ayurvedic beliefs consider disease as an opportunity to repair, revamp and restore the body’s complete health back into balance. Every individual is unique with a specific set of energy elements that make up their individual constitution.

These vital energies are known as doshas, namely pitta, vata and kapha doshas. The predominance of any one of these doshas determines the attributes and behavior of an individual.

Ayurvedic remedies are based upon dosha predominance and Ayurvedic treatments vary from individual to individual even for the same illness. It prescribes holistic remedies in the form of herbs, essential oils, healthy and nutritious diet, yoga, simple physical exercises, meditation along with an Ayurvedic routine for disease prevention and attaining longevity.

Myrtle essential oil is known to pacify kapha and vata doshas and increase pitta.

The Ayurvedic health benefits of Lemon myrtle essential oil are:

Myrtle-broucher1. Proven antibacterial and antimicrobial:

Lemon myrtle essential oil is regarded as a remarkable antimicrobial, antifungal and antibacterial agent with its clean, refreshing and pure citrus aroma. Certain studies have proved that Lemon myrtle oil possess significant antimicrobial power against harmful organisms like Staphylococcus aureus, Candida albicans, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Aspergillus niger and Klebsiella pneumoniae.

Add 2 drops of this oil along with olive oil to treat infections and diseases due to bacteria, fungi and other micro-organisms. You can apply this blend topically on the affected parts in case of athlete’s foot, ringworm, wounds and other skin problems. This oil heals and protects the wound from being septic as it fights against Staphylococcus bacteria that is responsible for making wounds septic.

1to 2 drops of Lemon myrtle oil added to a cup of warm water can serve as an excellent gargle for fresh breath and for helping with raw throats. Using 2 drops of this oil in your diffuser or in bath can give you a long-lasting feeling of freshness.

2. Trusted respiratory aid:

The decongestant and expectorant properties of Lemon myrtle oil acts effectively in treating chest congestion, flu, cold, bronchitis, asthma and sinus infections. Adding 3 drops of Lemon myrtle oil in steam inhalation can assist in alleviating headache, loosening mucus and phlegm deposits in the lungs and respiratory passages. The therapeutic molecules in this oil aids in controlling the increase of infectious particles that worsen cold and cough.

Certain anecdotal evidences witness that the expected number of cold, cough and sinus problems are lower in households that regularly use Lemon myrtle oil in aroma lamps.

You can also add 2 drops of this oil to your vaporizing ointment and gently massage onto your chest, back, forehead and throat for relieving from congestion and easing difficulties in breathing. Respiratory problems in general spoil your sleep at night, adding 2 drops of Lemon myrtle oil in hot bath especially before bed will help in promoting peaceful sleep at night.

3. Potent antioxidant:

Lemon myrtle essential oil has shown antioxidant properties that help in fighting against free radicals responsible for the growth of malignant tumors and other cancerous growths. This oil has potent antioxidant and antimicrobial effects that help combat food borne human pathogens and free radicals.

4. Excellent skin care remedy:

Several studies conducted by the Charles Sturt University, Australia have proved Lemon myrtle as an effective germicidal and antibacterial oil than tea tree oil in treating skin ailments and other health conditions. This is mainly because of its antiseptic and skin-friendly properties.

A recent study on ‘Antimicrobial activity of Backhousia citriodora (lemon myrtle) methanolic extracts’ states “The low toxicity of the methanolic extract and its inhibitory bioactivity against a panel of bacteria validate Australian Aboriginal usage of B. citriodora as an antiseptic agent and confirms its medicinal potential.”

Lemon Myrtle essential oil is an excellent oil for treating acne and oily skin. Mix 2 drops of Lemon myrtle oil with your skin care lotion and apply it on your acne, cold sores, warts, wounds and insect bites for soothing relief. 2 to 3 drops of this oil blended with olive oil can be used topically on rashes, neuro-dermatitis, tinea, psoriasis, folliculitis, candidiasis and itching.

The essential oil extracted from Australian Lemon myrtle leaves have been proved effective in treating Molluscum contagiosum, a common viral disorder that affect the skin of children and sexually active adults as it is generally seen as a sexually transmitted disease.

A 2004 study on ‘Essential oil of Australian Lemon Myrtle (Backhousia citriodora) in the treatment of Molluscum contagiosum in childrenwhere 9 out of 16 children with Molluscum contagiosum treated with 10% of Lemon myrtle essential oil showed 90% reduction in the number of lesions at the end of 21 days of daily topical application.

5. Natural deodorant and air freshener:

The fresh, citrusy aroma of Lemon myrtle oil will never let you down for the entire day if you wear 1 drop of this oil on your wrist or add 2 drops in your refreshing bath in the morning. You can also add 1 drop to your hanky or add few drops to your deodorant to combat body odor.

The antimicrobial properties in this oil absorb microbes in the sweat that causes bad odor. The clean scent of Lemon myrtle oil makes its use inevitable as an air purifier as it kills germs and other micro organisms in the atmosphere, making your home a better place to live in.

6. Gives a lift to your feelings and emotions:

Lemon myrtle essential oil is also fêted for its calming effects that uplift and revivify depressive thoughts and feelings of fear. Gently massaging the soles of your feet with 2 drops of Lemon myrtle oil blended with coconut oil can help you in conceding complete relaxation, alleviate stress, suppress negative feelings, induce better sleep and augment your self-confidence. You can also add 3 to 4 drops of this oil to your diffuser or aroma lamps for giving your mind the natural boost that it requires.

Other health benefits:

Lemon myrtle leaves and its essential oil are also used in brewing tea, flavoring confectionaries, savories, syrups, candies, sauces, desserts, mayonnaises, shampoos, body lotions and mouth fresheners. It is also used as a protective shield in the food industry as Lemon myrtle oil is known to destroy food spoilage yeasts, bacteria and other pathogens.

Disclaimer:

Avoid using essential oils internally. Always remember to dilute essential oils in suitable carrier oils as pure essential oils are highly concentrated liquids and may cause skin irritation or other side effects if used undiluted. Do not use Lemon myrtle oil before going out in sun as it has high phototoxicity effect just like other citrus oils. Always consult your Ayurvedic practitioner before using right essential oils for your health condition and unique constitution.

Thought for the day:

When nature has work to be done, she creates a genius to do it.   –Ralph Waldo Emerson

Suggested Reading:

  1. Medicinal Plants in Australia: Volume 2: Gums, Resins, Tannin and Essential Oils by Cheryll Williams
  2. The Aromatherapy Encyclopedia: A Concise Guide to over 385 Plant Oils by Carol Schiller, David Schiller
  3. The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Over 600 Natural, Non-Toxic and Fragrant Recipes to Create Health – Beauty – a Safe Home Environment by Valerie Ann Worwood
  4. Only the Essentials: A Concise Aromatherapy Reference Guide by Michele A. Williams

Reference Links:

  1. Backhousia citriodora by Wikipedia
  2. Lemon Myrtle Oil (Backhousia Citriodora) by UncleHarrys.Com
  3. Antimicrobial activity of Backhousia citriodora (lemon myrtle) methanolic extracts by Griffith University, Queensland, Australia published in Pharmacognosy Communications
  4. Essential oil of Australian Lemon Myrtle (Backhousia citriodora) in the treatment of Molluscum contagiosum in children by Center for Biomedical Research, Boise, ID published in PubMed

Oregano Essential Oil



oregano-bannerAcclaimed as ‘The Mediterranean Miracle’, ‘Mountain Joy’ and as the ‘Wonder Herb in Ayurveda’, Oregano has been aiding people all over the world and especially in the Mediterranean regions to maintain healthy living for numerous centuries.

The most popular Ayurvedic book, ‘Yoga of Herbs: An Ayurvedic Guide to Herbal Medicine’ by Dr. David Frawley and Dr. Vasant Lad says “Oil of Oregano is one of the most potent antiseptics known to man.

Botanically known as Origanum Vulgare, Oregano is yet another prestigious limb of the mint family, Lamiaceae and has its origin in the Mediterranean region and southwestern Eurasia. Ayurveda, the mother of all healing sciences used Oregano (known as Sathra) and its essential oil as a heating carminative to treat digestive disorders and was also used for treating toothache, skin problems, pain and inflammation.

Purchase Oregano Essential Oil – Retail – CLICK HERE   

Purchase Oregano Essential Oil – Wholesale – CLICK HERE

Historical uses of Oregano essential oil and the herb:

Known as the staple herb of the Italian-American cuisine, Oregano is one among the best culinary herbs in the world used in a variety of Mediterranean cuisines, Mexican food, Italian dishes and is also used in making fried, roasted or grilled vegetables, meat, fish and much more food varieties. It is also a part of many Lebanese, Turkish, Palestinian, Spanish, Greek, Portuguese, Syrian, Latin American and Egyptian cuisines.

Oregano essential oil is extracted from the leaves of this plant. This oil has been in use since the primordial times in various medicinal practices. The Traditional Chinese Medicine used Oregano for treating vomiting, fever and diarrhea. The fresh leaves were used in tea for strengthening the immune system and for dealing with infections.

Biblical texts denote Oregano as a cleansing tonic. The ancient Arabic medicine used this herb for food preservation and for treating gastrointestinal disorders. The natural medicinal system of Philippines used Oregano and its essential oil for treating cough and ear aches in children. It was also used in curing pain and given for women after childbirth for its emmenagogue properties.

Hippocrates, the ancient Greek physician and the father of western medicine used Oregano as an effective antiseptic and for treating respiratory and digestive ailments. History denotes that it was the Greeks who discovered the disinfectant and antimicrobial properties of this oil and they used it for treating skin infections, sore throat, wounds, viral infections and for protecting the body from the effect of harmful organisms.

Chemical constituents and therapeutic properties of Oregano oil:

Oregano essential oil is enriched with chemical constituents like carvacrol, cymene, thymol, borneol, terpinene, pinene, linalyl acetate, bisabolene, linalool, caryophyllene and geranyl acetate. The remedial properties of this oil are antimicrobial, antiseptic, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic, antioxidant, emmenagogue, anti-allergenic, digestive, anti-inflammatory and immune stimulant.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Oregano essential oil:

Ayurveda means ‘science of life’, the science that preaches the simple methodologies to prevent illness, stay healthy and for healthy aging that makes you independent in your 60s or 70s without relying upon anyone to assist your health conditions.

The philosophy of Ayurveda relates the life of an individual with the life of the Universe. Based upon this innate wisdom, Ayurveda further explains that the Universe is made up of five elements namely fire, water, earth, air and ether and it also states that an individual is also made up of the five elements of nature, which is also known as the building blocks of life.

Among these five elements water governs the movement of fluids in the body like blood, saliva, mucus and plasma. Fire determines the digestive power, intellectual skills and body temperature. Air controls the functioning of the heart, stomach, lungs, joints and intestines.

Ether is present in all parts of the human body where the presence of cavity and emptiness are witnessed like heart, nostrils, blood vessels, bladder etc. Earth represents vigor, braveness, constancy and steadiness.

The individual constitution comprises of three energy elements known as doshas (vata, pitta and kapha). Vata represents air and ether, pitta stands for fire and water and kapha stands for water and earth. Imbalance of doshas leads to illnesses.

Ayurveda recommends the use of herbs, essential oils, healthy lifestyle, meditation and yoga to bring the body and mind back to balance. Oregano oil is known to enhance pitta deficiency and reduce kapha and vata excess.

The major Ayurvedic health benefits of Oregano essential oil are:

Oregano-broucher1. Protects the body from infections and allergies:

Oregano oil has been proved effective for treating numerous infections and allergic conditions with its antibiotic, antimicrobial, anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-parasitic properties.

The Georgetown University research on Oregano oil’s effectiveness against drug-resistant bacteria, proves that the presence of carvacrol component in Oregano oil lessen the infections as effectively as the traditional antibiotics.

A study conducted by the Mexican researchers on the effectiveness of Oregano to treat giardia, which is a water-borne bacterium that lives inside the intestines. Another study proves that Oregano oil is effective in killing giardia bacterium than the generally prescribed drug tinidazol. Oregano is a powerful anti-bacterial oil that wards off numerous pathogenic bacteria like E.coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Strep and protects one from typhoid, sores, cholera, infections in the colon, urinary tract and certain other skin infections.

Parasites like tape worms, round worms, mosquitoes, fleas, lice and bed bugs cause innumerable communicable diseases that affect the human body severely. Oregano essential oil has anti-parasitic properties that aids in killing parasites.

Viral infections like cold, pox, mumps and measles weaken your immune power and paves way for other harmful organisms to affect your health. Oregano essential oil is a powerful immune stimulant that strengthens your immune system, fight against viruses and makes your system resistant to other foreign bodies.

Fungal infections like athlete’s foot and ringworm can be treated aromatically with the antifungal properties of this oil. Being an anti-allergenic oil, Oregano acts as a sedative and pacifies the hyper-sensitive reaction responsible for allergies.

A 2001 research on ‘Antimicrobial activity of essential oils from plants against selected pathogenic and saprophytic microorganisms’ proved that among the 11 essential oils tested for effectiveness against microbes, Oregano essential oil showed the highest inhibitory rate against pathogenic and spoilage microorganisms. The carvacrol and thymol compounds in this oil are very effective in killing a microbe known as Candida, which is the reason behind eczema and psoriasis.

To guard yourself against such infections and allergies, you can either topically apply 2 drops of Oregano oil blended with olive oil on the affected area or add 2 drops of oil in your bath or skin care cream or lotions.

2. Promotes digestive health:

Oregano essential oil is a heating carminative oil that aids in increasing the pitta flow and promotes quicker digestion. Massaging your tummy with 2 drops of Oregano oil blended with sesame oil can assist in treating slow digestion due to excess of mucous deposits in the stomach or fullness.

You can also add 2 to 3 drops of Oregano oil in warm compresses to help with stomach upsets, relieving gas, enabling the movement of food and for regularizing the entire process of digestion.

3. Assists respiratory problems:

As Oregano essential oil has warming effect, it can assist the body when it is cold and treat problems like cold, sinusitis, headache, mucous congestion, whooping cough, pneumonia and other respiratory infections. Oregano essential oil is said to be one of the best essential oils for opening blocked sinus passages and treat congestion as a natural decongestant.

Light Miller in her book ‘Ayurveda and Aromatherapy’ says that Oregano essential oil is a warming diaphoretic oil that eliminates surface toxins, provoke perspiration, improve blood circulation and relieve headaches due to congestion or cold.

Add 2 drops of Oregano oil to steaming water and inhaling this medicated steam will aid in alleviating congestion, open blocked nasal passages and relieve pain due to cold and infection. You can also blend 2 drops of Oregano oil with coconut oil and gently massage the soles of your feet or apply on your chest and back or add it to warm bathing water for immediate relief from cold, sore throat and sinus problems.

4. Helps relieve pain and inflammation:

The anti-inflammatory, immune stimulant and warming diaphoretic properties of Oregano oil assist in eliminating toxins from the body, reduce inflammation, increase blood circulation and lessen pain and inflammation in rheumatic and arthritic patients.

Gently massaging the affected area with 2 drops of Oregano oil blended with coconut oil or adding it to your bath helps in reducing pain and inflammation in arthritis. Oregano essential oil has been proved by the Physiotherapy research to contain morphine-like properties that act as a perfect pain relief aid.

5. Fights against prostate cancer:

The University of Arizona research and the study by the Long Island University have proved that Oregano essential oil has antioxidant and anti-cancerous properties that fights against many types of human cancers.

Prostate cancer has been listed as the second important cause of cancerous death in American men. This study found that the presence of the active constituent, carvacrol in Oregano oil helps in the treatment of prostate cancer by stimulating apoptosis (programmed death of cells) in prostate cancer cells.

Other health benefits:

Oregano essential oil also helps in alleviating dysmennorhea, normalizing blocked menstruation and treating menopausal symptoms. This oil is also used for treating intestinal parasites, muscular pain, warts, vaginal candida and asthma.

Disclaimer:

Never use essential oils directly on the skin and always dilute it in suitable carrier oils as essential oils are highly concentrated solutions. Avoid using essential oils internally. Consult your Ayurvedic physician before using the right essential oils for your unique individual constitution and state of health. Avoid using essential oils if you are pregnant or a nursing mother.

Thought for the day:

In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.    -Aristotle

Suggested Reading:

  1. Oregano – The Herb that Saved…My Life by Thomas Mayhew
  2. The Cure Is in the Cupboard: How to Use Wild Oregano for Better Health by Cass Ingram
  3. The Oregano Oil Supplement: Alternative Medicine for a Healthy Body (Health Collection) by William Wagner
  4. Herbal Antibiotics, 2nd Edition: Natural Alternatives for Treating Drug-resistant Bacteria by Stephen Harrod Buhner

Reference Links:

  1. Oregano Oil May Protect Against Drug-Resistant Bacteria by the Georgetown University Researcher published in Science Daily
  2. Oregano by Wikipedia
  3. Antimicrobial activity of essential oils from plants against selected pathogenic and saprophytic microorganisms published in PubMed
  4. Oregano Active Constituent Kills Prostate Cancer Cells by Herbcyclopedia