Although lavender essential oil is today the most widely used oil, it is used in cosmetics, perfumes and bathroom spa sets. The benefits of lavender oil were discovered more than 2,500 years ago. Lavender oil has been used for centuries to treat a variety of ailments, including antimicrobial, sedative and calming effects.
Lavender was used by the Egyptians for mummification as well as to perfume. According to legend, King Tut smelled faintly of lavender when his tomb was opened in 1923. This scent could still be detected after 3,000 year.
Modern and early aromatherapy texts recommend lavender essential oil as an antibacterial oil. The plant’s leaves and stems were used in decoctions to treat rheumatism and digestive system disorders. Lavender was also valued for its cosmetic properties. Lavender oil was used by the Romans to clean, cook and purify the air. Lavender oil is also mentioned in the Bible as an aromatic used to heal and anoint.
Lavender oil has so many benefits and can be applied directly to skin. This oil is a must-have for anyone who wants to use essential oils to improve their health. Although science has just recently begun to assess the health benefits of lavender essential oil, there is plenty of evidence that supports its amazing abilities.
Lavender essential oil is one of today’s most loved oils. It’s a popular oil for good reasons. Lavender oil has many benefits for the body and home.
Lavender Oil Benefits
1. Antioxidant Protection
The most dangerous and common risk factor for all diseases that Americans are currently facing is the free radical. This includes chemicals, toxins and pollutants. Your immune system can be shut down by free radicals, which can cause irreparable damage.
Your body’s natural reaction to free radical damage is to produce antioxidant enzymes (especially glutathione and catalase) that stop these free radicals doing their damage. If the free radical burden is high enough, the body can become deficient in antioxidants. This has been a problem in the U.S. due to poor diet and excessive exposure to toxic substances.
Lavender essential oil can be used to reverse and prevent disease. In Phytomedicine, a 2013 study found that lavender oil enhanced the activity of three of the most potent antioxidants in the body — glutathione and catalase. Recent studies also confirm that lavender oil has antioxidant activity, which helps to reverse or prevent oxidative stress.
2. Natural Diabetes Treatment
Tunisian scientists set out in 2014 to discover if lavender essential oil could help reverse diabetes naturally.
- Diabetes is characterized by an increase in blood glucose.
- Metabolic disorders (especially fat metabolism).
- Weight loss
- Antioxidant depletion in the liver and kidneys
- Kidney dysfunction and liver disease
- Lipid Peroxidation in the liver and kidneys (when free radicals “steal”, or “steal” essential fat molecules from cell membranes).
While more research is required to determine the full potential of lavender oil in the prevention and reversal or treatment of diabetes, these results are encouraging and show the therapeutic value of lavender. For diabetes treatment, you can apply lavender oil topically to the neck and chest. You can also diffuse it at home, or add it to your diet.
3. Increases mood and reduces stress
Lavender oil has been praised for its ability to prevent neurological damage in recent years. It has been used for neurological problems like stress, anxiety, and depression since ancient times. So it is exciting to see that research is finally starting to catch up to this fact.
A 2013 study by the International Journal of Psychiatry in Clinical Practice published evidence-based results that 80 mg capsules of lavender essential oils relieve anxiety, insomnia and depression. The study found that lavender oil did not cause withdrawal symptoms, drug interactions, or adverse side effects.
The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology published a human study in 2014 that revealed that Silexan (otherwise known as lavender oil preparation) was more effective against generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) than placebos and the prescription medicine paroxetine. The study did not find any withdrawal symptoms or side effects after treatment.
A second study was published in 2012 two took 28 women at high risk postpartum and found that lavender aromatherapy was effective in reducing anxiety and depression. PTSD symptoms can also be improved by lavender oil. A total of 80 mgs of lavender oil daily was shown to reduce depression by 33 percent, dramatically lower moodiness and sleep disturbances, as well as improve overall health and wellbeing in 47 patients with PTSD.
You can reduce stress and improve your sleep by placing a diffuser near your bed. This diffuser will allow you to diffuse oils in the bedroom, family room, or while you read or wind down at night. For the same benefits, you can apply lavender oil topically to your ears.
4. Supports brain function
Lavender essential oil has many neurological benefits beyond its ability to boost mood and treat depression. Studies also show that lavender oil can be used as an effective natural treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Inhaling lavender essential oil vapor is proven to reduce brain oxidative stress in rats and improve cognitive function. In 2012, Molecules published the findings of a study which showed that lavender oil can be used to treat neurological disorders such as stroke. Research suggests that lavender oil’s neuroprotective properties are due to its antioxidant qualities.
Lavender oil can be used to support the nervous system. You can diffuse it at home, inhale directly from the bottle, or apply it topically on the temples and back.