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Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy  Information

Definitions of Aromatherapy
Aromatherapy is the inhalation and application of essential oils to restore or 
enhance health, beauty and well being. This holistic treatment can help you 
to relax, rejuvenate or energize your body, calm your mind and lift your spirit.

The term "aromatherapie" was coined by the French chemist, Rene Maurice 
Gattefosse in 1928. He was convinced that the essential oils had antiseptic 
properties and other important healing abilities. While conducting an 
experiment in distillation he burned his hand and needing to cool it down, put 
his entire hand into a vat of pure lavender essential oil. The pain was gone 
almost instantly. Over the next few days his burn healed with no blisters, 
scars or infections. Thereafter he continued his research of this incredible 
phenomenon and uses of essential oils for other possible medical uses.

History of Aromatherapy
Combinations of resins, oils and fragrant plants were used in some form - for 
ceremonial, medicinal, or pleasurable reasons - in most ancient civilizations. 
In fact, perfumes and aromatic plants were the basis for many of the early 
trade routes. Some of the earliest documented uses of aromatherapy were in 
ancient Egypt. There, 3000-year-old papyruses have been discovered 
containing remedies for many types of illnesses; some of the methods of 
application are similar to the ones used in aromatherapy today. The ancient 
Egyptians used aromatic plants and their essential oils to create massage 
oils, medicines, embalming preparations, skin care products, fragrant 
perfumes and cosmetics. There are other written accounts of aromatic oil use 
in ancient Africa, Mesopotamia, Greece, Babylon, India and China.

What are Aromatherapy Essential Oils?
Essential Oils are highly concentrated and potent oils extracted from plants, 
leaves, flowers, fruit, bark and roots by distillation with either water or 
steam, by mechanical processing of citrus rinds, or by dry distillation of 
natural materials. It takes at least one pound of any given plant to create 
one drop of pure essential oil and are most expensive. Synthetic fragrance 
oils have little or no therapeutic effect and are often mixed with 
petrochemicals.

How do Aromatherapy Essential Oils work?
Inhalation of Essential Oils - The effects of essential oils can be felt simply by 
breathing in the aromatic vapor. Smell triggers psychological and physiological 
responses in the body. Smell receptor cells transmit impulses about the smell 
to the olfactory area of the brain in the limbic system, which is linked, to 
memory, emotions, hormones, sexuality and heart rate. These impulses 
trigger neurochemicals and endorphins that can bring about a mental and a 
physical change.

Absorption of Essential Oils through the Skin - The second way for essential oils 
to penetrate the body is through the skin. Essential oils can stimulate 
circulation, encourage cell regeneration and the formation of new skin cells. 
Some essential oils calm inflamed or irritated skin, release muscle spasms, 
and relieve muscular tension. The positive effect of essential oils on blood 
circulation is well known. Studies have found that basil, tea tree and thyme 
essential oils can encourage the production of white blood cells and boosting 
the immune system of the body.

Interesting Facts
It takes 6,000 pounds of jasmine pedals to produce one pound of jasmine 
essential oil. In addition, jasmine can only be picked 3 months out of the year 
between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. It takes 4,000 pounds of rose pedals to produce 1 
pound of rose essential oil. Roughly translated that means it takes about 30 
roses to produce 1 drop of essential oil.


 

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