Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Essential Oil for St. Patrick's Day: Peppermint

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all. If you're looking for an essential oil to use reminiscent of the spirit of St. Patrick's, give peppermint Mentha piperita a try.

Peppermint essential oil, also called balm mint or brandy mint, has a fresh, somewhat minty and strong smell. It is considered an adaptogenic oil, and although peppermint is not traditionally used in perfumery, the aroma is known to "give a lift" when inhaled.

The main constituent of peppermint oil produced in the United States is the alcohol, l-menthol (42.8%). Menthol is responsible for the cooling taste of peppermint, which is why peppermint is used extensively in commercial products, such as cough drops.

Before applying peppermint oil directly to skin, a skin patch test is recommended. You can also diffuse peppermint essential oil directly into the air for inhalation by using a terracotta light ring or a variety of diffusers.

Here's a recipe for a peppermint-based migraine rub (just in case!):
  • Chamomile Anthemis nobilis oil: 5-drops
  • Eucalyptus Eucalyptus globules oil: 5-drops
  • Lemon Citrus limonum oil: 5-drops
  • Peppermint Mentha piperita oil: 5-drops
  • Base oil: 2-T
  • Blend the oils and apply to shoulders, neck, and temples
Other "green" essential oils you might enjoy for St. Patrick's Day include: Eucalyptus, lime, basil, and bay.

>> For more information about the History of Aromatherapy, download a free lecture from the Apothecary Shoppe.

*Note, this post is for informational purposes only and is not intended to treat, cure, diagnose, or prescribe. You should always check with your primary care physician.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Researchers Indentify 6 Essential Oils for Inflammation

A new study in the January edition of the Journal of Lipid Research reported that researches have found six essential oils, including thyme, clove, rose, eucalyptus, fennel, and bergamot, that may help suppress the inflammatory COX-2 enzyme like resveratrol, the "chemical linked with the health benefits of red wine."

According to the website The Medical News, these findings "provide more understanding of the health benefits of many botanical oils and provide a new avenue for anti-inflammatory drugs."

Of the commercial essential oils tested, the researchers were able to identify six (thyme, clove, rose, eucalyptus, fennel, and bergamot) that "reduced COX-2 expression in cells by at least 25%." Of these, thyme oil proved the most effective and reduced expression levels by about 75%.

>> For therapeutic grade essential oils, visit the Apothecary Shoppe here. To learn more about aromatherapy and the use of essential oils, visit the American College of Healthcare Sciences here.

>> Read the full-length Medical News article here, with a link to the American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

NAHA Now Offers Mini Marketing Tips for Aromatherapy Professionals

The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy e-news now features a mini-marketing tips section written by Kayla Fioravanti, RA (who also is responsible for the blog Essential U). If you don't yet follow NAHA, now's the time. This is a very practical article for aromatherapy students and professionals, as well as holistic health professionals who adjunct aromatherapy with the primary practice.

In this first edition of NAHA Mini-Marketing Tips Kayla suggests "Determine Your Best Sellers-Cut the Dead Ends." She recommends focusing "on the top 20% of your products and services that bring in 80% of your sales. Phase out the rest unless they are support products for your top sales items. On a spreadsheet list every single product and service and put the total dollars sold next to each item. Sort them from highest to lowest and then determine which products make up the top 80% of total sales. You will find that they will be your top 20% of products or services. That means in almost every business, that 80% of your inventory is only doing 20% of your sales. But you are spending most of our money keeping those 80% of products or services available for that customer that uses them once a year."

>> To read more from the NAHA blog, click here: