At The Wellness Institute we look toward the traditional medicinal protocols and modalities as our foundation in treating and supporting our patients’ goals to have children. So whole foods diet, clean healthy certified raw milk and wholesome fats, Chinese herbal formulas, of course, acupuncture as well as working with Essential Oils are included in our protocols. There are specific essential oils as well as essential oil formulas that we use for infertility, PCOS, endometriosis, PMS, migraines, various pain syndromes, flus, colds, etc.
Essential Oils may be unfamiliar to many of you. There’s too much to say about all the benefits of using these products that contain essential oils or mention the numerous stories of those who have used them.
What is an Essential Oil?
They are aromatic volatile liquids distilled from shrubs, flowers, trees, roots, bushes, and seeds. The chemistry is very complex: each one may consist of hundreds of different and unique chemical compounds. The are highly concentrated and far more potent than dried herbs. It often requires an entrie plant or more to produce a single drop of distilled essential oil. Unlike vegetable oils they do not go rancid and are powerful antimicrobials.
Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils
The key to producing a therapeutic grade essential oil is to preserve as many of the delicate aromatic compounds within the essential oil as possible. These fragile aromatic chemicals are easily destroyed by high temperature and pressure, as well as contact with chemically reactive metals such as copper or aluminum. Therapeutic grade oils should be distilled in stainless steel cooking chambers at low pressure and low temperature. The plant material should also be free of herbicides and other agrichemicals.
Of greatest concern is the fact that some oils are adulterated, engineered, or “extended” with the use of synthetic chemicals. For example, pure frankincense is often extended with colorless, odorless solvents such as diethlphthalate or dipropylene glycol. It’s very difficult to identify a natural chemical from a synthetic one and thus, very easy to engineer oils or extend poor quality oils to make them smell and look good.
Unfortunately, a large percentage of essential oils marketed in the US fall in this adulterated category. The European Union have a tight framework of controls and standards concerning botanical extracts and who may administer them. Only practitioners with proper training and certification can practice aromatherapy.
How to Detect High Quality Therapeutic Grade Oils from Inferior Oils
One of the most reliable indicators of essential oil quality is the AFNOR (Association of French Normalization Organization Regulations) or ISO certification which has set standards for therapeutic grade essential oils adopted form AFNOR.
Historical Use of Essential Oils as Medicine
Records dating back to 4500 BC describe the use of balsamic substances with aromatic properties for religious rituals and medical applications. Ancient writings tell of scented barks, resins, spices and aromatic vinegars, wines and beers that were used in rituals, temples, astrology, embalming and medicine.
The Egyptians were mater in using essential oils and other aromatics in the embalming process. Many hieroglyphics on the walls of Egyptian temples depict the blending of oils and describe hundreds of oil recipes. They may have been the first to discover the potential of fragrance. In 1922, when King Tut’s tomb was opened, some 50 alabaster jars designed to hold 350 liters of oils were discovered. Tomb robbers had stolen nearly all the precious oils leaving the heavy jars behind. The robbers chose oils over a literal king’s ransom in gold, showing how valuable the fragrant essential oils were to this ancient civilization.
There are over 200 references to aromatics, incense and ointments throughout the Old and New Testaments. Aromatics such as frankincense, myrrh, galbanum, cinnamon, cassia, rosemary, hyssop, and spikenard were used for anointing and healing the sick.
The 12th century mystic, Hildegard of Bingen, used herbs and oils extensively in healing. This Benedictine nun founded her own convent and was the author of numerous works. Her book, Physica, has more than 200 chapters on plants and their uses for healing.
The Rediscovery of Essential Oils
The reintroduction of essential oils into modern medicine first began during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. During World War I, the use of aromatic essences in civilian and military hospitals became widespread. One physician in France, Dr. Monciere, used essential oils extensively for their antibacterial and wound healing properties.
Rene-Maurice Gattefosse, PhD, a French cosmetic chemist, is widely regarded as the father of aromatherapy. He and a group of scientists began studying essential oils in 1907. In his 1937 book, Aromatherapy, Gattefosse told the real story of his now famous use of lavender essential oil to heal a serious burn.
Research conducted at Weber State University in cooperation with D. Gary Young as well as other documented research, indicates that most viruses, fungi, and bacteria cannot live in the presence of many essential oils.