Camphor Oil



camphor-banner“Camphor increases prana, opens up senses and brings clarity to the mind, eases headache and awakens perception. It is a good stimulant and counter-irritant for joint and muscle pain”, says Light Miller and Bryan Miller in their book Ayurveda and Aromatherapy. Botanically known as Cinnamomum camphora, Camphor is a member of the Lauraceae plant family and is extracted from the wood and bark of this evergreen tree.

Prevalently called as Karpura in Ayurveda, this sacred and aromatic herb is used in Ayurvedic healing for more than thousands of years in the treatment of bronchitis, insomnia, asthma, hysteria, whooping cough, epilepsy, dysmennorhea, sinus headaches, nasal and pulmonary congestion, delirium and gout.

No sacred or religious ritual in India gets fulfilled without Camphor and is also known in Ayurveda with other names like Chandra, Himavaluka, Ghanasara and Chandra Prabha.

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Historical uses and importance of Camphor and its essential oil:

Popularly called as ‘the tree that does not sleep’, Camphor has been an important natural remedy especially in the Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda for more than 4,000 years in the treatment of various illnesses including nervous afflictions and other psychosomatic problems.

Indigenous to Formosa, Japan and China, this tree can grow up to a maximum height of 100 feet and the traditional Chinese used Camphor for its remedial uses and its wood was used in building temples and ships mainly due to its exuberant aroma and robustness. During the Tang dynasty (C.E. 618-907), Camphor was used in flavoring confectionery items like ice cream in China.

Camphor is an important part of Indian prayers, especially the religious ceremonies of the Hindu community since the traditional times. Burning camphor in the Pooja plate for deities is a part of every prayer in temples as well as homes and this sacred flame is calmly touched and its warmth feeling is passed on to the eyes. It is a part of the biggest spiritual celebration of the Hindus known as Mahashivratri dedicated to Lord Shiva.

The ancient Egyptians, Babylonians, Greeks and Romans used Camphor as a fragrant wood, incense resin, flavoring agent and as fumigants for embalming. It was given as prestigious gifts by the Chinese emperors for other kingdoms including the Arabian treaties. Camphor was also used as a traditional remedy for plague in Iran and Persia.

The strong aroma of Camphor makes it an excellent agent for protecting against snakes and other poisonous reptiles. It was also used as an insect repellant as it is trusted to be toxic to insects. Camphor was also used in tool chests to guard tools against rusting.

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

The Gas chromatography report witnesses Camphor oil with about 15 chemical constituents that contribute to its unique aroma, therapeutic values and consistency of this oil. Among which, 1,8-Cineole is the key component with about 35.9% of Camphor oil.

Just click on:

I believe that this information would certainly help you in having a clear picture about the primary chemical constituents of Camphor oil.

The table crafted below explains the unique nature and therapeutic qualities of these biochemical constituents to the curative values of Camphor essential oil.

camphor-table

Therapeutic properties of Camphor essential oil:

The remedial properties of this oil are stimulant, expectorant, antiseptic, anti-rheumatic, antispasmodic, decongestant, nervine, anti-phlogistic, analgesic, anti-arthritic and bronchodilator.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Camphor essential oil:

Ayurveda is a holistic healing science known to the world for more than 5,000 years. The most prominent 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 system 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 state 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 ration 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 the 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 doshas.

Camphor essential oil has the potent to reduce kapha and vata doshas and increase pitta dosha.

The major Ayurvedic health benefits of Camphor essential oil are:

Camphor-broucher1. Relieves severe pain, spasms and inflammation:

Camphor essential oil has antispasmodic, analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties that render itself as a promising pain reliever. The stimulating and counter-irritant effects of this oil relieve even severe muscular and joint pains.

With its anti-rheumatic and anti-arthritic attributes, Camphor essential oil assists in promoting blood circulation, eliminating toxic deposits in the joints and the entire system through urine and sweat and supporting the functions of the circulatory system. Ayurveda states that rheumatic problems mainly occur due to excess of kapha dosha leading to surplus deposits of water, toxins, salt and uric acid in the system, especially in the joints.

Camphor essential oil has the power to reduce kapha dosha and help in discharging ama or toxins in the system along with excess water content in the body. This oil works by anesthetizing the sensory nerves of peripheral nervous system, thus reducing inflammation.

Massaging the affected or painful parts with 2 drops of Camphor oil blended with 2 drops of Eucalyptus oil and 2 drops of Frankincense oil with 4 ml of coconut oil can be a great aid in reducing inflammation, swelling, painful muscles, redness and stiffness associated with rheumatism and arthritis.

This massaging can also help in relieving cramps, abdominal spasms and stiff joints. Adding 2 drops of Camphor essential oil to bathing water can bring in a feeling of newness, coolness and tranquility, especially during the summer season and can also help in alleviating pain and inducing peaceful sleep at night by relaxing the muscles, calming the nerves and cooling the senses.

2. Combats microbes and skin infections:

The essential oil of Camphor oil has been a prominent ingredient in numerous ointments and medications for treating skin infections caused by bacteria, fungi and other microbes. This is attributed to the germicide, disinfectant, anti-microbial and insecticide properties of Camphor oil. 2 drops of Camphor oil mixed with 1 ml of coconut oil can be applied on minor burns, itches, wounds, rashes, insect bites, nail fungus, cold sores, eczema, acne, chapped lips, athlete’s foot and ringworm.

Camphor is an excellent cleanser that helps in disinfecting the system when added to the bath tub (about 2 to 3 drops). 2 drops of Camphor oil with 2 drops of Rosemary oil added to your shampoo can help in treating dandruff and lice. This also helps in granting a cooling effect on the scalp and prevent unnecessary hair fall due to dandruff and lice.

3. Supports digestive functions:

Being a carminative, Camphor oil works wonders in relieving gas and flatulence. Gas in the intestines and stomach, when left unnoticed raises above slowly and causes sharp and severe pain in the chest, which may even lead to difficulty in breathing. Using Camphor oil assists in relieving gas and prevents the formation of gas.

Along with this, the diaphoretic effects of this oil aids in normalizing metabolic functions, enhancing circulation, improving sluggish digestion and controls the appetite. Mix 2 drops of Camphor oil with 2 drops of Juniper oil along with 2 ml of sesame oil and massage it gently on your abdomen for expelling gas and supporting the functions of the digestive system.

4. Pacifies the nervous system:

Camphor oil treats nervous afflictions and pain in the nervous system by causing numbness. This is attributed to its anesthetic effects. It is a proven remedy for treating neuralgia, which is a relentlessly painful condition caused due to the force on the Ninth Cranial nerve created by the swollen blood vessels surrounding it.

Gently massaging the system with 2 drops of Camphor oil, 2 drops of Eucalyptus oil, 2 drops of Juniper oil and 2 drops of Wintergreen oil blended with 5 ml of almond oil can help in reducing inflammation and lessen the pressure on the Ninth Cranial nerve, thus treating neuralgia. This can also assist in lessening the negative effects of epileptic attacks, nervous convulsions, chronic anxiety and nervousness.

5. Alleviates cold and other respiratory problems:

Camphor essential oil has a sharp, strong and medicinal aroma that makes its presence vital in numerous decongestant ointments and vaporubs. Vicks vaporub, the most popular decongestant has Camphor as one among its therapeutic formula. Camphor oil has been in use since the traditional times mainly for its effectiveness in treating respiratory ailments.

Excess kapha is the major reason behind the built up of mucus and phlegm deposits causing congestion and other respiratory problems. Camphor oil lessens kapha dosha and discharges mucus and phlegm in the respiratory and nasal passages.

Massaging your chest, throat and back with 1 drop of Camphor oil mixed with 1 drop of Eucalyptus oil and 1 ml of olive oil along with 2 drops of Camphor oil added to steam inhalation assists in relieving congestion in the respiratory tract, nasal passages, bronchial tract, pharynx and larynx.

Adding to 1 to 2 drops of Camphor oil to warm bathing water can also help in loosening the mucus and phlegm and clear the respiratory system. It is being used as an excellent cough suppressant since the primordial period. The powerful decongestant and bronchodilator properties of Camphor oil makes it an excellent remedy for treating asthma, sinusitis, pulmonary congestion, bronchitis, nasal congestion, whooping cough, common cold, chest congestion and cough.

Disclaimer:

This article is only for informational and educational purposes. It is not intended to replace any prescribed medication or professional medical advice or to cure, treat or prevent any illnesses. We are not medical professionals and this information is shared only with the idea of enlightening the mass with the traditional healing values of Ayurveda, the 5,000 year old medical system.

Do not use essential oils internally unless it is prescribed by your medical professional. Dilute essential oils before using it for topical purposes as organic and pure essential oils are very concentrated liquids and may cause allergic reactions if used on the skin directly. Consult your Ayurvedic expert/healthcare professional before picking up the perfect essential oils for your health condition and unique individual constitution. Ensure that you use very less amount of Camphor oil as prescribed by your medical expert, as excess use of Camphor can act as a narcotic poison.

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

Gas Chromatography Report (GC analysis) of Camphor oil

Camphor Oil – Possible Skin Issues:

camphor-new

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

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

Camphor oil has been acclaimed as lethal and highly toxic in various studies, when used in excess of the prescribed quantity. According to the safety report, the acute toxicity of Camphor oil is said to be exhibited by contact with the skin, eyes, inhaling and ingesting, however ingestion of Camphor oil should be avoided strictly mainly due to its chronic effects on the liver (hepatotoxic – toxic to the liver).

The major chemical constituents in Camphor oil, responsible for its skin sensitization, allergic reactions, irritation and autoxidation are camphene, 1,8-cineole (abnormal respiration and CNS depression, epigastric pain and cold sweats), limonene and a-pinene. Oils with limonene and a-pinene are responsible for oxidation and oxidized oils cause sensitization and irritation of the skin.

Using Camphor oil topically might also cause skin sensitization, irritation, skin allergies like hives, itching, rashes, swelling of the face and lip dryness. Camphor oil used as direct contact with the skin without any dilution in appropriate carrier oils is considered as a dangerous skin irritant. Never use Camphor oil on cuts, broken or peeled skin.

It is highly recommended to avoid Camphor oil during pregnancy and breastfeeding, as it gets quickly absorbed by the placenta and may cause physical and neurological damage to the developing fetus and in nursing mothers there are possibilities of Camphor being absorbed through skin cracks and pass on to infants through milk (might cause damage to the infants’ liver and central nervous system).

Do not use Camphor oil on patients with bronchitis, asthma, epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease, as it can cause convulsions, increase spasms, seizures (by accounting to chemical disparity in the brain) and worsen the situation. It is also not recommended for high blood pressure patients as it is frequently used in the treatment of low blood pressure.

The safe level of use of Camphor is up to 3% dilution in case of liniments. As per the Dutch Information Medicamentorum, the safe usage level of Camphor is 20 to 100 mg/g for chest rubs, 0.15 mg/ml for nasal sprays, 20 to 50 mg/g for nose ointments, 1 to 70 mg/g for pruritus lotion and 40 to 250 mg/g in oils for muscular pain.  However 11% is regarded as the maximum level of safe usage in all kinds of dermal applications.

Camphor, according to the Poisons Information Monograph, an International Programme on Chemical safety states that the major risks of ingestion of Camphor are renal damage, colic, anxiety, convulsions, nausea, delirium, gastric irritation, irritation of the mucous membrane, asystole, apnoea, chronic post-convulsive coma and difficulty in breathing occur after ingesting about 2 grams of Camphor (acute toxicity level) and 4 grams are possibly lethal for adults and 1 gram for children and may cause death.

This report also denotes that the major target organs for Camphor damage are the upper respiratory tract, liver, kidneys and the central nervous system. Certain studies witness the immediate collapse in infants soon after the application of Camphor to their nostrils.

Reference Links Substantiating Possible Skin Issues of Camphor Oil:

  1. Hazardous Substance Fact Sheet of Camphor by New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services
  2. Leung’s Encyclopedia of Common Natural Ingredients, used in Food, Drugs and Cosmetics by Ikhlas A. Khan and Ehab A. Abourashed
  3. Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals By Robert Tisserand, Rodney Young
  4. Toxicity Summary of Camphor by Toxnet, National Institutes of Health
  5. Camphor topical Side Effects in Detail by Drugs.com
  6. Camphor by the Poisons Information Monograph, an International Programme on Chemical safety

Thought for the day:

Nature is a mutable cloud which is always and never the same. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Suggested Reading:

  1. The Tree That Does Not Sleep:: Phytochemistry, Allelopathy and the Capability Attributes of Camphor Laurel (Cinnamomum camphora (L.) Nees & Eberm.) by John Schenk
  2. Camphor; A Pharmaceutical and Pharmacognostical Study by U. S. Government
  3. Ayurveda & Aromatherapy: The Earth Essential Guide to Ancient Wisdom and Modern Healing by Dr. Light Miller, Dr. Bryan Miller
  4. Fragrance & Wellbeing: Plant Aromatics and Their Influence on the Psyche by Jennifer Peace Rhind
  5. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils: The Complete Guide to the Use of Oils in Aromatherapy & Herbalism by Julia Lawless

Reference Links:

  1. Camphor by Wikipedia
  2. History of Camphor oil by eHow
  3. Health benefits of Camphor essential oil by Organic Facts
  4. Camphor by Bryan Miller and Light Miller in their book Ayurveda and Aromatherapy
  5. Camphor benefits – A multipurpose plant by Greenchedy


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Mentha Oil



Mentha-oil-broucherAre you a mint? I mean, are you a cool-headed person? Life would be simply stupendous if all of us remain as cool as mint leaves. Yes! This miraculous herb in any form would drive in extraordinary coolness, where the mere sight of mint leaves gives coolness to the eyes; eating fresh mint leaves or mint-based gums implants long lasting freshness in the mouth; applying Mint oil on your body revives and refreshes the skin; inhaling its enlivening aroma instills peace and happiness and just hearing the word ‘mint’ itself pleases the ears. (Aha! Mint benefits all the five senses of healing.)

Mentha or mint has a long association with Ayurveda and the other entire Alternative and complementary healing methodologies. With its sattvic (power to enhance purity and harmony) and prana (life force or vital energy) enhancing properties, Mentha and its essential oil is trusted to heal a range of health conditions including depression, anxiety, nervous tension, lack of self-esteem, asthma, rheumatism, bronchial congestion, lack of appetite, fever, rheumatic conditions, halitosis, dandruff, acne, flatulence, bad breath and the list never ends.

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Therapeutic attributes and chemical constituents of Mentha essential oil:

The essential oil of Mentha has antidepressant, stimulant, carminative, antiseptic, cholagogue, expectorant, antispasmodic, antiphlogistic, antioxidant, stomachic, antimicrobial, nervine, antifungal, analgesic, detoxifying, anti-pruritic, diaphoretic and anti-flatulent properties.

The major chemical constituent of Mentha essential oil is menthol and the other components that make Menthol oil as worthy as its weight in gold are a-pinene, b-pinene, flavonoids, menthone, methyl acetate, limonene, b-caryophyllene and camphene.

History and traditional uses of Mentha and its essential oil:

Mentha is a plant genus in the family of mints known as Lamiaceae. There are about 20 species of plants and hybrid mint varieties in the Mentha genus. The most popular among them are Peppermint, Spearmint, Japanese Peppermint, Banana mint, Penny royal, Garden mint, Apple mint, Orange mint, Water mint, Wild mint, Forest mint and Asian mint.

Mentha arvensis, Mentha piperita, Mentha spicata are the most famous botanical (species) names of the Mentha family. Most often, all the members of this family share common chemical constituents and the corresponding remedial properties mainly due to the qualities acquired from the same genus Mentha (It’s parent).

Mint is the most friendly and quickly growing perennial plant and its origin has been referred to Asia and Europe. The history of ancient medicine has a handful of remedial references on Mentha and its varied significance.

The genus name Mentha has said to be obtained from Greek mythology, where Menthe, a nymph who was transmuted to a plant by Proserpine as a result of his jealousy on the love of Pluto for Menthe. Aha! Moment again and the credit goes to you ladies, as again like most of the tremendous plant varieties, Mint is also a female indeed!!

English physician, Dr. James Parkinson states “Mintes are sometimes used in Baths with Balm and other herbs as a help to comfort and strengthen the nerves and sinews. It is much used either outwardly applied or inwardly drunk to strengthen and comfort weak stomackes.”

“It is comfortable for the head and memory, and a decoction when used as a gargle, cures the mouth and gums, when sore. Garden Mint is most useful to wash children’s heads when the latter are inclined to sores, and Wild Mint, mixed with vinegar is an excellent wash to get rid of scurf. Rose leaves and mint, heated and applied outwardly cause rest and sleep”, says Nicholas Culpepper, the 17th century herbalist and physician.

The book Herball by the famous botanist John Gerard quotes Mint asthe smelle rejoiceth the heart of man, for which cause they used to strew it in chambers and places of recreation, pleasure and repose, where feasts and banquets are made.”

Pliny the elder, the Roman Natural philosopher says “The smell of Mint does stir up the minde and the taste to a greedy desire of meate. It will not suffer milk to cruddle in the stomach, and therefore it is put in milk that is drunke, lest those that drinke thereof should be strangled.”

Mint is a universal herbal remedy for various health problems, where the traditional Romans and Greeks used these miraculous leaves for treating indigestion, colic, pain and respiratory illnesses.

The primordial Europeans used Mint leaves for dealing with gall bladder disorders, flatulence, cough and other digestive mayhems. As a nourishing appetizer, Mint has been used in various mouth-watering dishes across the world including the cuisines of India, Asian subcontinent; Middle East, America and Britain.

Mentha leaves have been used in making traditional tea varieties in India, where mint tea is said to alleviate fatigue, anxiety and instill instant nourishment to the brain. Many research studies conclude that Mentha is a trusted remedy for irritable bowel syndrome.

The essential oil of Mentha has been used in the manufacturing of various things including soaps, dandruff shampoos, acne creams, skin care lotions, jellies, teas, candies, syrups, ice creams and beverages. Mentha is also a noted flavoring ingredient in toothpaste, mouthwash, chewing gums, perfumes, cosmetics, pain balms and vaporizing ointments.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Mentha essential oil:

What is your thought about Ayurveda? What do you really think? Is your mind uttering that it is an ancient science, a traditional healing system, works slowly, needs patience during the healing tenure and at last you soothe stating that you don’t have much time to take up an Ayurvedic treatment.

Is Ayurveda still the “Road not taken” in your life? Then listen to me, you are not too far from attaining a healthy and harmonious life. More than just a medicinal system, Ayurveda is a complete and disciplined way of living. The word ‘Ayur + Veda’ simply means the knowledge of life.

All it needs to take up Ayurveda in your life is to do a thorough self-examination, for understanding your individual constitution (the innate rhythm of your system with nature) contributing to your physical set up, psychological attributes, spiritual element and your behavioral patterns.

You can take the help of an Ayurvedic expert to learn about your doshas and then frame your way of living that strikes absolute balance with nature. Ayurveda recommends Dinacharya or Ayurvedic routine, things to follow in your day-to-day living for prevention of illnesses and increased life span.

The rich historical reference of Ayurveda vests with India for about 5,000 years, where it is believed to be a gift of the Lord of Creation (Brahma) to the Lord of Medicine (Dhanvantari). This sacred science of healing was taken to the next level by the Ayurvedic philosophers Acharya Charaka and Acharya Sushruta, the masterminds behind the Ayurvedic encyclopedias Charaka Samhita and Sushruta Samhita.

According to Ayurveda, every individual is unique with a distinct individual constitution, likewise their health conditions should also be treated in a unique manner even if it is for the treatment of the same sickness.

The first Ayurvedic consultation with your Ayurvedic practitioner helps you to identify your medical history, Prakriti (unique individual constitution – combination of 3 doshas) and the most suitable treatment methodologies exclusively for your physical, emotional and spiritual conditions.

Ayurvedic essential oils (prana or the life force of plants), herbal medications (fresh, dried herbs or herbal infusions), yoga, simple physical exercises, meditation, prayers, Ayurvedic routine, Abhyanga (Ayurvedic massaging), and Pranayama (balanced breathing), Panchakarma (detoxification techniques) are the major Ayurvedic remedies prescribed often.

These medications aim at balancing the doshic irregularities due to changes in lifestyle, code of conduct, food habits, weather and work conditions. Ayurveda recommends the use of Mentha and its essential oil for aggravating vata dosha and pacifying pitta and kapha energies.

The Ayurvedic health benefits of Mentha essential oil are:

  1. By far the best remedy for irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive disorders:
  2. Magical spell for relieving pain and inflammation:
  3. Depression or fear of failure? Embrace Mentha for sure:
  4. Say goodbye to bad breath and other oral problems:
  5. Breathe easy – Mentha for your respiratory woes:
  6. Share the joy of healing skin problems:

Mentha-OIl1. By far the best remedy for irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive disorders:

Pitta dosha is combination of fire and water. This dosha is responsible for metabolic functions, body temperature and cognitive abilities. Pitta dosha is often associated with the stimulation of Agni or the digestive fire.

Pitta vitiation ends up in excessive secretion of gastric juices, digestive acids and other digestive enzymes, which in turn rest on the stomach or intestinal lining. This ends up in gastric ulcer, irritation of the bowel and intestines.

Mentha is known for its potent to pacify pitta or the digestive fire with its cooling and soothing effects. It is for this reason; Mentha and its essential oil are used for treating irritable patterns in the intestines and bowels.

Michael T. Murray, Naturopath and the known author of “The Encyclopedia of healing foods” says that Mentha oil calm down the muscles and walls of the stomach and intestines, which aids in alleviating indigestion, abdominal cramps and pain associated with irritation and irregular bowel movements.

The stimulating, refreshing and energizing aroma of Mentha oil makes it an effective remedy in controlling vomiting (for which it is called as vatihari in Ayurveda, means one that prevents vomiting), bloating and nausea especially during travel. Wearing 2 drops of Mentha oil to your hankie or a tissue and inhaling the uplifting aroma while travelling can pacify the digestive system and protect you from the inconveniences of puking on the go.

A 2010 study published in the “Digestive diseases and sciences” journal has concluded that Mint oil considerably lessened pain in the abdomen and enhanced the lives of people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome.

Massaging your abdomen with 4 drops of Mentha oil, 2 drops of Marjoram oil and 2 ounces of coconut oil can assist in relieving flatulence, bloating, motion sickness, belching, heartburn, abdominal spasms and peristalsis with its stimulant, carminative, antispasmodic, stomachic and anti-flatulent properties.

2. Magical spell for relieving pain and inflammation:

Mentha is absolutely one among the top 10 essential oils for its ability to discard all forms of stagnation in the system including lungs, stomach, gall bladder, kidneys, lymphatic tissues and blood.

According to Ayurveda, stagnation or retention of fluids, toxic remains, salt, uric acid, and fat deposits invite numerous foreign bodies and the corresponding disorders by deteriorating the functions of the system.

Fluid retention is a kapha disorder and is the key to rheumatic conditions, edema, joint pain, obesity, low level of insulin resistance, fibroids, increased blood pressure and heart problems.

With its power to reduce kapha imbalance, Mentha oil assists in treating pain, inflammation and flushing out excess fluids and toxic remains in the system. These remedial benefits are attributed to its anti-inflammatory, analgesic and diaphoretic properties.

A gentle massage with 5 drops of Mentha oil, 3 drops of Ginger oil with 4 ounce of Evening primrose oil can assist in reducing pain by causing numbness in the aching area, eliminating toxic remains and surplus fluids by promoting frequent sweat and urination and soothing the tensed muscles and nerves.

3. Depression or fear of failure? Embrace Mentha for sure:

Stress, depression, anger, fear of failure, feelings of loneliness and other mental worries eats up your intellect and your power to fight back and triumph.

Mentha essential oil has an extraordinarily soothing, invigorating, heartening and reviving aroma that grants you the perfect power of resisting your mental maladies, encouraging your power to rise up, augmenting your intellectual abilities, clearing the mental blocks, calming your nerves and your entire system from within.

Called as Sugandhi patra for its inspiring aromatic leaves, Ayurveda states that Mentha oil has a positive impact on:

  • Throat chakra or Visukthi (genuineness and the power to communicate bravely).
  • Solar plexus chakra or Manipuragam (self-esteem and self-confidence).
  • Sacral chakra or Svathishtanam (pleasure, abundance and well-being).
  • Root chakra or Moolatharam (power of survival).

Adding 2 drops of Mentha oil, 1drop of Vetiver oil and 1 drop of Patchouli oil in your vaporizer, burner or diffuser especially during Pranayama, meditation and prayers can grant in opening, relaxing, clearing and activating all the associated chakras or the points of subtle energy.

This rewards the power of overcoming loneliness, negative emotions and helps in exhibiting the supremacy of being a self-confident, legitimate, intellectual, cool-headed, fearless and productive person. This also helps in enhancing your concentration power, treat memory loss and vent out your hatred feelings and jealousy.

You can also add this blend in your bath or in your aromatic candles before bedtime.

4. Say goodbye to bad breath and other oral problems:

Bad breath or halitosis is not just a symbol of poor oral hygiene. Instead, the common underlying causes are poor digestion and retention of ama or toxic remains in the body.

Mentha essential oil has disinfectant, antimicrobial, cooling, energizing and refreshing attributes that helps in killing germs and microbes responsible for oral problems like gingivitis, cavities, mouth ulcers and bad breath.

Mixing 2 drops of Mentha oil and 1 drop of Lemon oil in a cup of warm water for gargling, preferably twice (morning and night) in a day after brushing can help in healing mouth sores and bleeding gums. It also assists in refreshing the breath and treat cavities, gingivitis (gum inflammation) etc.

5. Breathe easy – Mentha for your respiratory woes:

Trouble-free breathing is a gift to mankind as the healing powers and the life force or prana of Mother Nature enter the system through breathing in and toxins in the system are purged through breathing out.

The essential oil of Mentha has excellent decongestant (attributed to the presence of menthol), expectorant and stimulant properties that help in treating asthma and other breathing difficulties caused due to respiratory conditions.

Steam inhalation with 2 drops of Mentha oil and 2 drops of Eucalyptus oil followed by a gentle massage with this blend added to your mild vaporizing cream can help in opening up blocked nasal and bronchial passages, clearing congestion by loosening the phlegm and mucous deposits, relieving headache associated with sinusitis and migraine and in relieving fever, runny nose, itchy eyes and other associated symptoms of cold.

6. Share the joy of healing skin problems:

Pimples???? No more panics as Mentha promises in clearing excess oil, sebum, dirt and other harmful microbes in the sebaceous glands. It controls the secretion of sebum and allows the skin to nurture from within.

Skin impurities are again a symbol of ama or toxic deposits in the system. Ayurveda states that about 70% of the toxic elements in the body are discarded through exhalation. Wow! Amazing news right!

Just rush to add 2 drops of Mentha oil with 1 drop of Rosemary oil in your burner in the early hours of the day during your Pranayama or the technique of conscious breathing.

As it penetrates deeply with its light and subtle qualities, the therapeutic values of Mentha oil pass through the nasal passages in the form of aromatic molecules and reach the limbic system (control center of the brain).

You can experience the difference in the texture of skin after regular practice of Pranayama with Mentha magic, as all the microbes and toxic substances are washed out during slow and steady exhalation.

You can also add 2 drops of Mentha oil with 2 drops of Lavender oil and 1 ounce of Jojoba oil and dab externally for treating wounds, pimples, cuts, abrasions, itching, candida and other inflammatory conditions of the skin.

Other health benefits:

Mentha and its mystical essential oil are also used in the treatment of dandruff, wrinkles, cancerous growths, cough, insect bites, impotence, hay fever and more.

Disclaimer:

This article is only for the purpose of education. It is not meant for curing any health condition or for replacing any prescription medicines or advice of medical experts. We are not health professionals and this article focuses on widening the horizons of Ayurveda, the mother of all remedial science on earth.

Mentha essential is meant only for topical use. This is due to the fact that pure and organic essential oils are extremely concentrated substances and may cause adverse allergic reactions if used directly on the skin. Do take ingest essential oils.

Consult with your Ayurvedic practitioner or healthcare professional before selecting the appropriate essential oils for your individual constitution and health condition. Care should be taken in using essential oils if you are pregnant or nursing. Keep essential oils away from children.

Thought for the day:

Learn character from trees, values from roots and change from leaves.

-By Tasneem Hameed

Suggested Reading:

  1. Mint: The Genus Mentha (Medicinal and Aromatic Plants – Industrial Profiles) from Brand: CRC Press
  2. Mentha by Dinesh Kumar Singh, Prasann Kumar, Pankaj Kumar Mishra
  3. Growing and Cooking with Mint: Storey’s Country Wisdom Bulletin A-145 by Glenn Andrews
  4. Teas for Life: 101 Herbal Teas for Greater Health by Diane Kidman
  5. Ayurvedic Medicine: The Principles of Traditional Practice by Sebastian Pole

Reference links:

  1. Mentha by Wikipedia
  2. Mint: Health Benefits, Uses and Risks by Medical News Today
  3. Mints by Botanical.com
  4. What are the benefits of Mint leaves? By Tracey Roizman, Demand Media
  5. Studies on activity of various extracts of Mentha arvensis Linn against drug induced gastric ulcer in mammals by Ramesh L Londonkar and Pramod V Poddar, published in PubMed

Marjoram Oil



Marjoram-bannerOh! My! My! Marjoram is addressed as the herb of eternal love and joy of the mountain. As the most loved herb by Aphrodite, the Goddess of love and beauty, the leaves of Marjoram were sanctified for surmounting marital bliss and everlasting love. The spicy, rich, sweet, soothing and tantalizing aroma of this oil will leave you relaxed, energized and absolutely rejuvenated.

Known to the world of Ayurveda as Maru, Marwa, Sinshi and Sathra, Marjoram has been recommended for treating muscular tension, cardiovascular problems, premenstrual problems, polycystic ovarian syndrome, sinus congestion, insomnia, Alzheimer’s disorder, asthma, joint pain, flatulence, rheumatism, toothache, loss of libido and certain other health conditions.

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Chemical constituents and remedial properties of Marjoram oil: The major chemical constituents responsible for the therapeutic values of Marjoram oil are linalool, a-pinene, cineole and sabinene.

A 2012 study on “Thymus mastichina: chemical constituents and their anti-cancer activity by Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal concludes that “the cytotoxicity-guided study of the dichloromethane and ethanol extracts of Thymus mastichina L. using the HCT colon cancer cell line allowed the identification of nine compounds, sakuranetin (1), sterubin (2), oleanolic acid (3), ursolic acid (4), lutein (5), beta-sitosterol (6), rosmarinic acid (7), 6-hydroxyluteolin-7-O-beta-glucopyranoside (8), and 6-hydroxyapigenin-7-O-beta-glucopyranoside.”

The remedial properties of the oil of Marjoram are deodorant, antiseptic, analgesic, disinfectant, emmenagogue, sedative, antispasmodic, calming, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, aphrodisiac, antifungal, antioxidant, disinfectant, antibacterial, diaphoretic and expectorant.

Historical uses and significance of Marjoram oil:

Marjoram is an excellent culinary herb that has been used habitually in the flavoring of soups. There are many types of Marjoram and are called by different names like Sweet Marjoram, Mastic Marjoram, Wild Marjoram, Knotted Marjoram, Spanish Marjoram and Garden Marjoram.

As a member of the mint family, Lamiaceae, Marjoram has various botanical names and the most common being Origanum marjorana (Sweet Marjoram), Thymus mastichina (Spanish Marjoram), Origanum onites (Pot Marjoram) and Origanum heracleoticum (Winter Marjoram) and few other names.

The oldest historical uses of Marjoram take us to the ancient Greek mythology, where it was used for treating muscular tension, poisonous stings and bites, discarding fluid retention and as a symbol of love and affection.

Indigenous to Southern Europe, Marjoram is used as a flavoring ingredient and as a condiment. It is used in various food varieties including salamis, stews, seasonings, marinades, dressings, salads, roasted meat, sausages and goes well with green and leafy vegetables.

Marjoram has been an interesting part of wedding rituals, where the Newly-wed couples wear Marjoram wreaths as a sign of beginning their magical love life. Marjoram teas and infusions are extremely famous for their power in relieving headache, sinusitis, flatulence, hay fever and menstrual discomforts.

It is an ancient belief that if a Marjoram plant grows on a grave, and then the deceased person has attained perpetual happiness in the world after. The aromatic leaves and flowers of this plant were strewn in homes for its antimicrobial, disinfectant and deodorant properties.

Traditional home remedies with Marjoram include poultices for healing boils, rashes, sprains and abrasions. Folklore beliefs also include the use of Marjoram as a rescuer from bad luck and curses.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Marjoram essential oil:

Ayurveda is a holistic healing science that treats human beings as reverential individuals and not just as patients. This miraculous therapy respects the individual differences of every person and recommends remedies as per the unique individual constitution and not on the basis of diseases.

It is for this reason, the first Ayurvedic consultation always begins with personal discussion with the Ayurvedic professional for learning the medical history, family background, lifestyle, food habits, likes and dislikes, good and bad things that have happened in the life of the person, affecting and influencing his medical condition.

This is because human beings are valued as a special creation and they should not be treated as a “one size fits all” module. Dr. Vasant Lad, the renowned Ayurvedic Expert has denoted in the Textbook of Ayurveda as “Ayurveda treats the whole person, not just the organ or system involved.”

Ayurveda strongly states that health is a tree-tier figure that encompasses physical, mental and spiritual well-being. “The aim of Ayurvedic medicine is to integrate and balance the body, mind, and spirit. This is believed to help prevent illness and promote wellness” quotes the National Institute of Health.

Even today, the world of medicine looks up to Ayurvedic healing for its integral health-giving methodologies that strive to cast a person through all the facets of life together with the wellness of the mind, body and spirit.

By identifying the root cause of a disease, Ayurveda hits the nail on the head of the illness without missing its aim, as shooting the bird’s eye.

This ancient methodology states that the treatment of symptoms of an illness will grant only a temporary remedy, instead treating the underlying root cause will cure the illness, protect the system from its other side effects and also aid in preventing it in the future as well.

The most valued Ayurvedic encyclopedias including Charaka Samhita, Sushruta Samhita and Ashtanga Hridaya Samhita say that everything in the universe are crafted with the five fundamental elements of nature i.e. water, fire, earth, air and space.

Every person is unique with a distinct Prakriti otherwise known as the individual constitution (combination of 3 doshas). These doshas are biological energies and are an array of the five vital forces of nature.

Vata is an arrangement of air and space and is responsible for the functions of the nervous, respiratory and circulatory systems. Pitta dosha is a demonstration of fire and water and takes control of metabolism, body temperature and cognitive functions.

Kapha dosha symbolizes water and earth and it regulates the movement of fluids in the body, physique, reproductive functions and enhanced nourishment.

Every individual has a predominance of any one of these doshas, which determines their distinctiveness, personality and behavioral attributes.

Absolute balance between these doshas as per the law of nature depicts health and harmony, whereas imbalance due to irregular food habits, code of conduct, sedentary lifestyle, lack of physical and psychological exercises and change in weather conditions leads to ill-health.

Ayurveda prescribes natural medications including herbal remedies, Ayurvedic essential oils, Dinacharya or the Ayurvedic routine, prayers and meditation for the spirit and soul, yoga, simple physical exercises, Abhyanga or Ayurvedic massage, Panchakarma (treatment for cleansing toxic remains) and many more for the mind and body.

These remedies depend upon the Prakriti of an individual and are always person-specific and not disease-specific.

Marjoram and its essential oil are recommended for pacifying kapha and vata conditions, in surplus and to augment pitta dosha.

The Ayurvedic uses of Marjoram oil are:

1. Physical benefits:

  • Relieves pain and muscular tension:
  • Checks asthma, cold and other respiratory infections:
  • Encourages menstruation and relieves dysmennorhea:
  • Heals skin disorders:
  • Enhances metabolism and soothes the digestive system:

2. Psychological benefits and uses to the nervous system:

3. Spiritual benefits:

Marjoram-broucher-new1. Physical benefits:

The essential oil of Marjoram has enormous benefits to the body ranging from its efficiency in lessening the risk of hypertension with its anti-depressant property, reducing blood pressure in case of high BP with its effect to check anxiety and stress, checking the amassing of cholesterol with its detoxifying attribute and enhanced blood circulation with its power to pacify vata dosha.

Relieves pain and muscular tension: Anyone can clearly pinpoint Marjoram essential oil for relaxing tensed muscles, especially after workouts or physical exertion. With its mild sedative, analgesic and antispasmodic properties, Marjoram essential oil relieves pain in the muscles and joints.

Research reports state that Marjoram has the potent to enhance bone mass building by supporting osteotrophic actions in the bones. This is mainly due to the fact that Marjoram is one among the richest source of vitamin K.

With its power to eliminate fluid retention, toxic substances, salts, fat deposits and uric acid in the system, Marjoram is a proven remedy for treating edema, rheumatic and arthritic conditions where inflammation, redness, pain, soreness and swelling of joints are witnessed.

Massaging the affected parts with 5 drops of Marjoram oil along with 3 drops of Cedarwood oil with 2 ounce of coconut oil can assist in relieving pain, swelling, muscular soreness, lumbago, joint aches and other associated discomforts by discarding excess toxins in the form of sweat and urine.

Checks asthma, cold and other respiratory infections: Asthma, cold, sinusitis, congestion and similar respiratory infections generally occur due to the invasion of bacteria, virus and other harmful micro-organisms.

As a potent expectorant, antimicrobial, antiviral and antibacterial agent along with its power to pacify excess kapha energy responsible for the buildup of phlegm and mucous deposits in the nasal and respiratory passage, Marjoram essential oil is effective in treating various respiratory conditions.

3 drops of Marjoram oil with 2 drops of Eucalyptus oil added to steam inhalation and in your vaporizing ointment, massaged gently on throat, back, chest and temples can help in loosening mucous and phlegm, relieve chest and nasal congestion, alleviate headache related to sinusitis and migraine, treat flu, sore throat and other respiratory problems.

Encourages menses and relieves dysmennorhea: Marjoram has circulatory, sedative, relaxant and emmenagogue properties that help in regulating the menstrual cycle in case of missed periods or delayed menstruation, reduce menstrual pain and fortify the pelvic muscles.

A 2015 study on “The effect of marjoram (Origanum majorana) tea on the hormonal profile of women with polycystic ovary syndrome: a randomised controlled pilot study by Haj-Husein, S. Tukan and F. Alkazaleh, published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics”, concluded as “the beneficial effects of marjoram tea on the hormonal profile of PCOS women because it was found to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the levels of adrenal androgens.”

Massaging the lower abdomen, lower back and thighs with 5 drops of Marjoram oil, 5 drops of Thyme oil and 4 ounce of Sesame oil can aid in stimulating regular menstruation, lessen pain, fatigue and anxiety associated with periods and check polycystic ovarian syndrome with its power to reinstate hormonal balances and considerably decrease the level of adrenal androgens.

Heals skin disorders:

Marjoram essential oil has antimicrobial, antifungal, antiseptic and disinfectant properties that make it an effective oil in healing wounds, rashes, dermatitis, scalp infections, invasion of microbes causing skin infections and acne.

Recent studies have established the high concentration of linalool component in Marjoram oil, which contributes to the anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and antifungal properties, thus making it as a significant oil in various cosmetics and skin care products.

Blend 2 drops of Marjoram oil with 1 drop of Rosemary oil, 1 drop of Ylang Ylang oil and 1 drop of Orange oil and mix it with your mild skin care lotion or cream and lightly dab it on the affected areas for treating acne, dermatitis, sunburn, shaving irritation, wounds (for fighting against micro-organisms like Staphylococcus bacteria, which worsens infections in case of wounds or other skin problems) and wrinkles.

You can also mix this blend in your bath for treating inflamed scalp conditions and for refreshing your skin health.

Enhances metabolism and soothes the digestive system:

Ayurveda states that ama or toxic remains as a result of improper digestion is the root cause for many other health conditions including obesity, rheumatism, edema, kidney disorders,acne, heart diseases etc.,

Marjoram essential oil has carminative properties with its ability to enhance pitta dosha, which is responsible for digestive fire and metabolic functions. Massaging the abdomen with 3 drops of Marjoram oil, 3 drops of Nutmeg oil and 1 drop of Spearmint oil with 3 ounce of coconut oil can support in stimulating the salivary glands, augmenting the secretion of bile, digestive enzymes and other gastric juices.

This is turn aids in enhancing the appetite, treating flatulence, diarrhea, nausea, abdominal spasms, constipation and also in soothing the intestinal and lining of the stomach.

2. Psychological benefits and the uses to the nervous system:

Since the prehistoric times, Marjoram is trusted to be the herb of happiness and love. You will be amazed if I say that this ‘Joy of the mountain’ was adored for its ability to tone down distress and misery.

Everything from nervous tension, anxiety, depressed thoughts, negative feelings, loneliness, lack of concentration, stress, mood fluctuations and anger to inferiority complex, has a time to rest with the kind of emotional benefits owned by Marjoram oil.

Practicing Pranayama with 2 drops of Marjoram oil with 2 drops of Rosemary oil and 2 drops of Tangerine oil in a diffuser, can help you significantly in relieving stress, anger, anxiety, hatred thoughts, vengeance, inferior feelings and lower self esteem.

Pranayama is the Ayurvedic art of balanced breath where the therapeutic properties of these essential oils reach the limbic system of the brain through the aromatic molecules during conscious inhalation of breath or the life force.

This renovates the mind and repairs toxicity of the mind and body. In a much similar way, the toxic remains and de-motivating feelings are discarded from the system during extended exhalation.

Following this balanced breathing technique daily with the use of Marjoram oil is an excellent way to inculcate optimistic feelings, self-love, self-acceptance, improved concentration, mental dynamism, enhanced memory power and assisting in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. This is an effective remedy for protecting the brain from neuronal damages.

3. Spiritual benefits:

Marjoram is a representation of tranquility, harmony, health and heartiness. It enlightens the soul by awakening the sense of self-consciousness, especially when using it during meditation.

The oil of Marjoram has a positive effect on the heart chakra and the solar plexus chakras, where chakras are the centers of energy in the subtle body. The heart chakra or Anagatha determines one’s ability to love and the emotional factors associated with it are self-love, love for others, inner peace and joy.

Solar plexus chakra or Manipuraga decides a person’s level of confidence and the potent to take control of one’s live. Emotional attributes related with this chakra are self-confidence and self-esteem.

Adding 2 drops of Marjoram oil and 2 drops of Vetiver oil added to your burner or diffuser at the time of meditation and prayers can open your eye of consciousness, empower your spirit, foster mental clarity, augment self-love paving way for higher self-esteem and improved self-confidence. What next? A peaceful life with joy and focused living is in store for you to enjoy and enrich.

Other health benefits:

Marjoram is also used in the treatment of impotence, loss of libido, bruises, cough, bloating and toothache.

Disclaimer:

This article is only for educational purposes and is not intended to treat any medical condition or to substitute any prescription drugs or professional medical advice. We are not healthcare experts and this article aims only in sharing the healing wisdom of Ayurveda, the mother of all healing sciences on earth.

Essential oils are not meant for ingestion. Pure and organic essential oils are highly concentrated liquids and may harm the skin if used directly without dilution. Always remember to dilute essential oils in suitable carrier oils before safe topical application.

Speak with your Ayurvedic expert or healthcare professional for deciding on the appropriate essential oils for your unique individual constitution or state of health. Please avoid Marjoram oil if you are pregnant or nursing. Keep away from children.

Thought for the day:

Take a quiet walk with Mother Nature. It will nurture your mind, body and soul.

Suggested Reading:

  1. SWEET MARJORAM ESSENTIAL OIL – THE #1 PAIN RELIEF OIL IN AROMATHERAPY: ANTISPASMODIC HEALER, RESTORATIVE PAIN RELIVER, PLUS+ HOW TO USE GUIDE & RECIPES! (Healing with Essential Oil) By KG Stiles
  2. Marjoram Greats: Delicious Marjoram Recipes, The Top 55 Marjoram Recipes by Jo Franks
  3. Marjoram, Mint and Marigold by Evans, Hazel (1996) Hardcover by Hazel Evans
  4. Medicinal Plants of the World by Ben-Erik van Wyk, Michael Wink

Reference Links:

  1. Marjoram by Spices Board of India
  2. Thymus mastichina: chemical constituents and their anti-cancer activity by Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal published in PubMed
  3. The effect of marjoram (Origanum majorana) tea on the hormonal profile of women with polycystic ovary syndrome: a randomised controlled pilot study by Haj-Husein, S. Tukan and F. Alkazaleh, published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics
  4. Marjoram by Dr. Vikram Chauhan
  5. Marjoram, Herb of love published in doityourself