Essential Oils 101: Peppermint

peppermint

Young Living Peppermint essential oil is a favorite of mine & frequently used in our household. Because of its many medicine uses, it has a special spot in my medicine cabinet. Peppermint is a natural antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiparasitic, digestive stimulant, analgesic, and antispasmodic. It is one of the main ingredients in many different pain relieving essential oil blends. Peppermint has a cool, fresh scent, and is very invigorating. When diluted appropriately, it can also be safely used on aches and sprains on pets. Although this oil is safe to use during pregnancy, some caution should be taken by breastfeeding moms because peppermint in large quantities has been known to reduce milk supply.

Some uses for peppermint:

  • Reduce body temperature
    • Dilute one drop in a tsp carrier oil, then rub onto your temples and forehead, can also apply to bottom of feet
  • Invigorate lungs / Relieve chest congestion / Cough / Open airways
    • Massage 2-3 drops (along with a carrier oil) onto chest or drop into a humidifier to help clear sinus and lung congestion
    • Steam along with eucalyptus to relieve a cough. Pour boiling water into a metal or glass bowl, and add a few drops of essential oil. Drape a towel over your head and position your face 10-12 inches above the bowl and breathe in the steam.
  • Calm headaches
    • Dilute in a tsp carrier oil, rub over aching area (if sinus pressure, rub over sinuses — be careful to avoid eyes)
    • Dilute, rub one drop onto your temples, then rub into your hands, cup hands together & inhale deeply
    • Mix with lavender essential oil & dilute in a carrier oil for further relief
  • Energize/Invigorate
    • Rub one drop onto your temples, then rub into your hands, cup hands together & inhale deeply
    • Diffuse in your diffuser
    • Inhale peppermint essential oil, apply topically to your temples or neck, or put a drop on your tongue or in water to jump-start your morning routine
    • Inhale before/after a workout to keep up your energy
    • Dilute & apply to the back of the neck and shoulders throughout the day to keep energy up
  • Improve mental clarity/alertness/focus
    • Rub one drop onto your temples, then rub into your hands, cup hands together & inhale deeply
    • Diffuse in your diffuser
    • Dilute & place 2 drops on the tongue and rub another drop of oil under the nose
  • Curb appetite
    • Diffuse or inhale mid-morning to suppress the desire to snack
  • Ease digestive complaints
    • Add a drop to your herbal tea
    • Dilute a drop in 1/2 tsp coconut oil and rub around and above navel
  • Motion sickness
    • Apply a drop to wrists & inhale
  • Relieve muscle/joint soreness
    • Add a few drops to a bath… or a foot bath!
    • Dilute and apply directly to sore area/s
  • Relieve itching from insect bites
    • Dilute one drop of peppermint and one drop of lavender in a tsp of carrier oil & apply to bitten area
  • Allergies
    • Mix a 2:2:2 drop ratio with lemonlavender essential oils, then take orally (in a gel capsule or water). NEVER take non-Young Living essential oils orally.
  • Dandruff
    • Add a drop or two to homemade shampoo to fight dandruff
  • Odor elimination
    • Make a deodorizing spray
    • Apply to cotton balls and leave in the bottom of trash can (outside of the trash bag)
  • Use in body products like lotion & bath salts
  • Make chocolate peppermint freezer fudge!

What questions do you have about peppermint essential oil? How have you used peppermint essential oil?

Contact me if you would like more information on purchasing this amazing product!

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Essential Oils 101: Lavender

lavender

As we begin our journey into learning about individual essential oils and oil blends, I have decided to start with the essential oil that I feel is not only the most versatile essential oil, but also one of the most beneficial to the largest population of people.

Young Living Lavender essential oil is by far my most used oil of all time. Why? Let me tell you!

Why I love lavender:

  • Lavender is one of the only oils that can be safely used undiluted (in some cases) and is gentle enough for babies, children, and pregnant & breastfeeding mommies
  • Lavender has lots of uses
  • Lavender is naturally anti-pathogenic (destroys bacteria & viruses)
  • Lavender smells lovely!

Some uses for lavender:

  • Calms anxiety / Soothe emotions / Reduce stress
    • Rub one drop onto your temples, then rub into your hands, cup hands together & inhale deeply
    • Diffuse in your diffuser
  • Encourage restful sleep / Insomnia
    • Make a lavender spray for your pillow, use a few drops in your bath before bed, and/or use the anxiety calming technique
    • Diffuse in your diffuser
    • Make up some bath salts with lavender essential oil & epsom salts. So relaxing!
  • Soothe and cleanse irritated skin
    • Apply directly to the irritated area, or dilute in a carrier oil and apply
  • Scrapes/sores
    • Apply directly to the irritated area
  • Neutralize insect bites/stings
    • Apply directly to the bite/string area
  • Regenerate burns/damaged skin
    • Apply directly to damaged area or mix in aloe vera gel & apply. You can also mix in a few drops of colloidal silver to help repair the damaged skin. DO NOT apply to opened wounds & DO NOT dilute in an oil as this will trap heat and create further burn damage.
  • Headaches
    • Rub one drop onto your temples, then rub into your hands, cup hands together & inhale deeply
    • Mix with peppermint essential oil & dilute in a carrier oil for further relief
  • Allergies
    • Mix a 2:2:2 drop ratio with lemonpeppermint essential oils, then take orally (in a gel capsule or water). NEVER take non-Young Living essential oils orally.
  • Make products for baby
    • Baby bath wash & shampoo can be made with castile soap, water & lavender essential oil
    • Dilute in coconut oil & apply as a skin moisturizer and for diaper rash
    • Dilute in coconut oil & shea butter to help treat baby eczema
  • Freshen laundry
    • Add a drop or two to a wash rag & throw in your dryer with your laundry to freshen the scent
  • Air freshener
    • Dilute several drops in a spray bottle filled with filtered water, shake up the bottle & spray in air, on carpet & on fabric covered furniture
  • Help with motion sickness & nausea
    • Place a drop of Lavender oil on end of your tongue, behind your ears or around your navel
  • Cold sores
    • Apply a drop directly to the cold sore
  • Dandruff
    • Rub a few drops into your scalp or add a few drops to your homemade shampoo
  • Sunburn or chapped lips
    • Apply directly to the sunburn or chapped lips. I have personally found lavender to be very effective for eliminating blistering, peeling, pain & itching due to sunburns & promoting faster healing.

These are just a few of my favorite uses for lavender. There are many more uses for this incredible oil!

What questions do you have about lavender essential oil? How have you used lavender essential oil?

Contact me if you would like more information on purchasing this amazing product!

Essential Oils 101: How To Use Young Living Essential Oils (Lesson 4)

As you learn about essential oils and read different books and articles on aromatherapy, you will see a wide variety of recommendations for how many drops of essential oils you need to use in each recipe. This is because, as we discussed in this post, not all essential oils are created equal. While Young Living essential oils are 100% pure essential oils, many other brands are as little as 3% essential oil in each bottle, with the rest being additives and fillers.

In general, when a generic recipe I find on the Internet includes essential oils, I will start out by using 1/4-1/3 of the drops called for in the recipe. So, if a bath salts recipe says to use 8 drops of essential oils, I will start with 2-3 drops and then add drops as needed. When the recipe does not specify what brand they are using, I assume that it is a generic brand & that since I am using the potent Young Living oils, I will probably need less than what is called for in the recipe. It is a lot easier to add more drops than to take away drops if you have added to many.

When diluting essential oils into a carrier oil, I will use 1-2 drops of essential oil for every 1 tsp-2 tbsp of carrier oil. This is a wide range of dilution, but how much you want to dilute really just depends on what essential oil you are using, where you are applying it, what your purpose for application is, and your own individual body size and composition. There is not a one-size-fits-all approach with essential oils. I always really dilute the oils when I am using them on infants and children & pay particular attention to researching the ingredients to make sure they are safe for little ones. Just because an oil comes from a natural substance does not mean that it is safe for every age or in any quantity.

It is important to remember that Young Living essential oils are very potent & highly concentrated, so be cautious that you are diluting them appropriately in carrier oils before using them.

Did you know that you can use essential oils to pretty much replace your OTC medicine cabinet? Check out the chart below!

 

younglivingotc

All of these oils & more can be found in the Everday Oils Collection. This is a really great starter collection for anyone who is new to essential oils and would like to start using them.

In upcoming posts we will be highlighting each of these oils individually and learning about their unique uses.

 

DISCLAIMER:
– No statements made here are meant to diagnose, treat, or cure disease. Although many people have found great relief from ailments with use of essential oils and products containing them, we legally cannot claim to heal or cure disease with essential oils because they not FDA regulated.

Essential Oils 101: Using Essential Oils vs. Pharmaceuticals (Lesson 3)

Now that we’ve talked about how to use essential oils, let’s discuss why I like to use them as my first line of defense in attacking sickness before I turn to pharmaceuticals.

I am a registered nurse. I worked in a pediatric cardiovascular intensive care unit for 4 years. I have a lot of experience working with very sick children with conditions that essential oils cannot treat. I am very thankful for the technology we have these days and believe that western medicine certainly has its place. However, I also believe that when it comes to mild illness and every day discomfort, I would rather try to first take a more gentle approach with less side effects than to use pharmaceuticals. This is where essential oils come in handy!

Pros of Using Essential Oils vs. Pharmaceuticals

  • Essential oils come from plants found in God’s natural creation
  • Essential oils give benefits with little to no side effects
  • No toxic chemicals
  • Many are safe for the whole family (pregnancy/babies/children/adults)
  • Versatile for multiple symptoms
  • With proper care, essential oils don’t expire (except citrus oils which last 7-10 years before expiration)
  • Minimize symptoms while getting to the root cause vs. managing/masking symptoms
  • Unlike western medicine, essential oils can attack viruses
  • Same cost or cheaper per dose with no medical fees, insurance or co-pays

Wow! That’s a lot of benefits to essential oils over pharmaceuticals if you ask me!

Let’s explore each of these points down a little further.

Essential oils come from plants found in God’s natural creation.
Have you ever looked at the inactive ingredients on the bottles in your medicine cabinet? Sodium benzoate, high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavor, propylene glycol, and multiple colored food dyes just to name a few. These were ingredients I found in bottles of children’s medication. These ingredients are linked to health problems and we are giving them to our kids for symptoms like headache and runny nose! Young Living 100% essential oils are ONLY essential oils. Nothing else. No other hidden chemicals or ingredients. Just 100% natural plants that God made.

Essential oils give benefits with little to no side effects.
Have you ever noticed that on commercials for pharmaceuticals, the list of side effects at the end tends to be longer than the rest of the commercial? With essential oils, you don’t have that problem.

No toxic chemicals.
Refer to the point directly above. Although not oils can be used in the same ways (for instance, wintergreen should never be ingested because it is poisonous when consumed), there are no toxic ingredients in the essential oils. They can safely be used as directed on their bottles.

Many are safe for the whole family (pregnancy/babies/children/adults).
I think the most miserable part of pregnancy was unrelieved discomfort. I had the worst sinus infection I have ever had during the January I was pregnant with Josiah. Since during pregnancy women are limited with the medications they can safely take, I am SO thankful that I could safely use my peppermint essential oil to relieve the headache and sinus pressure. There are several essential oils that are safe when used properly during pregnancy, with infants & children. For all you mommas of little ones, this is a huge benefit to essential oils over pharmaceuticals!

Versatile for multiple symptoms.
How many times have you gone to the store to spend money on a medication, only to use it for a few days and then have it sit in your medicine cabinet for a year or two before it expired and most of the bottle was wasted? Well, essential oils are so versatile that you can use one bottle of one oil for many, many different uses so that not one drop gets wasted!

With proper care, essential oils don’t expire (except citrus oils which last 7-10 years before expiration).
Speaking of expiration, most oils don’t ever expire! If you’re like me, I use them frequently enough that one bottle would be long gone before I have had it a decade, but even if you don’t use yours very often, rest assured that you won’t be wasting your money on a product that will go bad before you can use it up.

Minimize symptoms while getting to the root cause vs. managing/masking symptoms.
Not only do essential oils help minimize the symptoms of illness, but they can also relieve problems at the root cause, helping to relieve the symptoms for good. Most pharmaceuticals work more like a band-aid where they cover up the symptoms, but they don’t get rid of the problem.

Unlike western medicine, essential oils can attack viruses.
Are there any other science nerds like me out there? This is one of the most amazing things to me about essential oils. Pharmaceuticals can attack bacteria because bacteria lives on the outside of the cell wall, but pharmaceuticals cannot penetrate to the inside of the cell wall where viruses attach and make their home. This is why antibiotics don’t work on the common cold, because the common cold is a virus. There are essential oils that can penetrate to the inside of the cell wall, fighting off viruses and relieving those awful symptoms. How cool is that?!?

Same cost or cheaper per dose with no medical fees, insurance or co-pays.
I am a frugal person. Our family lives on a tight budget. That being said, essential oils have saved us so much money over the last few years compared to what we would have paid if we were buying pharmaceuticals. I have broken down the cost per “dose” of several different essential oils vs. their equivalent in over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, and the cost has either been comparable or cheaper. Here is an example of using Tylenol vs. peppermint or lavender essential oil for a headache:

  • Tylenol $25.80­-30.96 for 250­-300 tablets (325mg each), dose is two tablets
  • Peppermint $28.29 (15ml) for 250­-300 drops, dose is one drop
  • Lavender $30.92 (15ml) for 250­-300 drops, dose is one drop

With this breakdown, you can see that Tylenol is TWICE as expensive as peppermint or lavender. Tylenol has possible side effects. Tylenol is not nearly as versatile in its usage. Tylenol has an expiration date of just a year or two, so it may go to waste in your medicine cabinet. Tylenol is made up of a lot of man made chemicals that could potentially wreak havoc on your health. I am not bashing Tylenol… but I do think it’s only fair to say that in comparison it doesn’t hold a candle to peppermint or lavender essential oils.

Ok, now that we know how beneficial essential oils can be, let’s start learning about individual essential oils and how they can be used! In upcoming posts in this series, I will share information on some of my favorite oils and oil blends and the many different ways they can be used.

 

DISCLAIMER:
– No statements made here are meant to diagnose, treat, or cure disease. Although many people have found great relief from ailments with use of essential oils and products containing them, we legally cannot claim to heal or cure disease with essential oils because they not FDA regulated.

Essential Oils 101: How Do I Use Essential Oils? (Lesson 2)

Now that you have learned what essential oils are, it’s time to learn how we can use them!

When you start using essential oils, it is easy to get overwhelmed learning about what all can be done with them. They are SO versatile and have SO many uses ranging from relieving symptoms of illness to being ingredients in home cleaning products, bath and body products, and some of them can even be used in cooking!

Before we dive into the details, let’s talk a little about the many ways we can use essential oils.

There are 3 different methods for using essential oils:
1. Aromatically

  • Affect mood (uplift/stabilize/balance/relieve stress & anxiety/etc.)
  • Kill germs in the air (bacteria/viruses/mold/mildew)
  • Open airways (respiratory)

2. Topically

  • Systemic/localized effect (apply directly to area of discomfort)
  • Massage
  • Immune support (application to the bottom of your feet is great for absorption!)

3. Internally

  • For systemic results: under the tongue/swallow gel capsule/dilute in water
  • Relieve digestive system symptoms
  • Direct application for mouth/throat symptoms

SAFETY WARNINGS:
– Essential oils should never be applied directly into the eyes, ears, nose, or on eyelids- “Hot oils” such as peppermint, oregano, basil, etc. should always be diluted into a carrier oil before application
– Always use your oils per directions on the bottle. Not all essential oils are safe for internal use. For example, wintergreen is toxic and would be very dangerous to use internally.

What are carrier oils?
A carrier oil is a “real” oil (or vegetable oil) such as olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, apricot oil, sesame oil that an essential oil can be diluted into to “carry” it for usage. A carrier oil dilutes the essential oil, making the powerful essential oil it less potent and expands the usage of each drop.

Tell me some ways I can use essential oils!
I sat down for about 5 minutes and made a list of how I personally use essential oils in my own home. This is by no means the extent of how essential oils can be used:

Everyday Uses

  • Toothpaste
  • Shampoo
  • Deodorant
  • Bath salts
  • Lotions
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Hand soap
  • Air freshener
  • Diffusers
  • Candle warmers
  • Cooking/Baking
  • Laundry
  • Stain removal
  • Disinfecting
  • Furniture polish
  • Carpet cleaner/freshener
  • Cloth diapering
  • Teething oil
  • Baby lotion & oil
  • Massage oil

All sorts of medical symptoms & remedies

  • Pain
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Congestion
  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Respiratory discomfort
  • Upset stomach
  • Muscle tension
  • Numbing
  • Antiseptic
  • Dandruff
  • Acne
  • Inflammation
  • Allergies
  • Depression
  • Mood
  • Insect repellent
  • Bites/stings

Are you getting an idea of how versatile essential oils can be?

Next we will talk about why I like to use essential oils as my first line of defense for illness. I like to keep my bag of essential oils handy to use before I turn to pharmaceuticals. Read my next post in this series to find out why!

DISCLAIMER:
– No statements made here are meant to diagnose, treat, or cure disease. Although many people have found great relief from ailments with use of essential oils and products containing them, we legally cannot claim to heal or cure disease with essential oils because they not FDA regulated.

Essential Oils 101: What Are Essential Oils? (Lesson 1)

Have you heard your friends talking about “essential oils” and all of the great things that can be done with these versatile products?

Your co-worker is making bath salts with lavender essential oil…

Your neighbor is cleaning her counters with lemon essential oil…

Your best friend just kicked her cold with some blend of essential oil called “Thieves…”

Your local fire fighter just saved a cat from the top of a tree while standing on his head, singing Mary Had A Little Lamb and diffusing some sort of stress relieving essential oil…
ok, not really, but you’ve probably heard some sort of claims related to using essential oils that sounds a bid outlandish, right?

So, what’s this all about? What are essential oils? What do you do with them? How do they work? Why do I consider them life altering?

Welcome to Essential Oils 101! The series where I will educate you on all things, well, essential!

Let’s start with the basics:

What are essential oils?
An essential oil is the essence of the plant from which it comes. An essential oil is not actually an “oil” like olive oil or coconut oil (these are called carrier oils and we will discuss them later). When a plant is distilled, it is broken down and the liquid that remains is the essential oil.

What’s the difference between essential oils and herbs?
Although some essential oils come from herbs, such as oregano, basil, rosemary, peppermint, lavender, etc. they are highly concentrated amounts. It takes many plants of the same type to make one bottle of essential oil. For example, one drop of peppermint essential oil is the equivalent of 28 bags of peppermint tea. That means that one 15 ml bottle of Young Living peppermint essential oil is equal to 7000-8400 bags of peppermint tea! WOW, that is potent!

What is the difference between Young Living essential oils and other brands?
After much research & personal essential oil usage, the brand I have become loyal to and am a distributor for is Young Living Essential Oils & products. I have found it to be true that when it comes to essential oils, you get what you pay for! Young Living is committed to providing 100% pure, therapeutic grade essential oils. This means that there are no additives, fillers, or ingredients added to dilute the oil bottles. Many store bought brands, though cheaper, contain other ingredients and can be as low as 1% essential oil in the bottle. After experiencing the difference between Young Living and other store bought brands, I found a very noticeable difference & cannot in good conscience recommend other brands. If you read the labels on the store bought essential oils, you will find disclaimers that say, “for aromatic use only. do not ingest!” With Young Living, many of their oils are safe when ingested properly. This is because they are 100% pure, high quality oils. Young Living also goes to great measures to acquire their ingredients from their natural environments. For more information about how their products are created, visit their Seed To Seal Promise.

Why is it important to purchase your essential oils from a trusted brand?
If you are going to be putting a product on your skin, breathing it into your lungs, and/or ingesting it in your body, it is very important that said product is safe! Young Living provides 100% pure essential oils with a guarantee of no fillers, the plants are not sprayed or treated with dangerous chemicals, and they are grown & harvested in their natural habitats. Other brands potentially have added ingredients which may be carcinogenic (cancer inducing), can cause other long term adverse effects, may not be quality plants grown safely, and may not be 100% essential oil. Some other essential oil brands actually only contain 3% essential oil in the bottle & the rest of the product is water and filler ingredients. So, with other brands you may be paying a cheaper price, but you are also getting 97% less essential oil in the bottle.
After personally using Young Living products for over 3 years, I can promote that this brand is effective and true to its word without a doubt in my mind.

So, now that you know a little about what essential oils are, would you like to know how to use them? You can find out in the next post in my next Essential Oils 101 series!

 

DISCLAIMER:
– No statements made here are meant to diagnose, treat, or cure disease. Although many people have found great relief from ailments with use of essential oils and products containing them, we legally cannot claim to heal or cure disease with essential oils because they not FDA regulated.