The Benefits of Essential Oils

Essential oils

Essential oils are plant elixirs that can have potent therapeutic properties. However, they aren’t regulated by Health Canada or the FDA and are prone to deceptive marketing and conflicting advice.

Getting them in the eyes, skin or mucous membranes can cause burning and irritation. They can also be toxic if ingested.


Lavandula angustifolia, or Lavender oil, is the most popular essential oil in the world. Its sweet, floral scent is so familiar and pleasant that it instantly evokes feelings of calm and relaxation.

Its anti-inflammatory properties soothe itchy, angry skin from eczema and psoriasis flare-ups and reduce redness and swelling after bug bites. Lavender oil also works to prevent aging of the skin with its powerful antioxidant action.

Inhaled directly from the bottle, it can ease anxiety and promote a good night’s sleep. It can also be diluted and applied topically to soothe a headache, relieve muscle aches, soothes abdominal pain, bloating, sprains, and spasms.

Add lavender to a diffuser with a hint of Orange and Cedarwood for a peaceful bedroom environment to help you get a restful night’s sleep. Alternatively, dilute with V-6 (vegetable oil complex) or jojoba oil and apply to neck, back, and shoulder for a relaxing massage. Lavender has antifungal and antibacterial properties which can be helpful with yeast infections, ringworm, and athlete’s foot.


Eucalyptus oil is well-known for its powerful respiratory benefits. It has mucolytic and bronchodilating properties that help reduce mucus membrane inflammation, loosen phlegm and make it easier to breathe. This makes it the perfect natural remedy for a cough, cold, sinusitis, bronchitis, a stuffy nose or even asthma!

It’s also a great antimicrobial and disinfectant. You can add a few drops to your laundry to keep your clothes fresh and clean. You can also use it as a natural insect repellent. Just dilute it with a little water and apply to your skin (just avoid your eyes and mouth) or inhale from a diffuser.

Eucalyptus essential oil can also boost your mood and energy! Diffuse it in your home or car to get a quick and refreshing pick-me-up. It’s also great for relieving stress and promoting relaxation. You can also apply a few drops of eucalyptus oil to a cotton ball and rub it on your temples or neck.


Peppermint essential oil has many household uses and makes a great addition to homemade cleaning products. It also can be diluted and used topically to soothe headaches or itching. Peppermint is an anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and a natural deodorizer.

It helps reduce stress and mental fatigue, promoting relaxation, balance and focus. Combined with lavender and geranium oil, it can help ease tension in the muscles of the face and body. Its expectorant properties encourage clear breathing, while its menthol content stimulates circulation and provides relief from indigestion.

Unlike perfume oils, which contain synthetic chemicals, essential oils are safe for use in your home because they are pure and natural. But they should always be diluted and never applied to the skin or inhaled undiluted.

Johns Hopkins warns that inhaling essential oils can cause irritation, especially in children and people with a fast heartbeat, and should not be used around pets or other animals. When using an oil diffuser, be sure to use one that has a built-in filter.


Rosemary essential oil is a favorite for stimulating the metabolism and improving circulation, which leads to healthy skin. Its herby scent also helps ease stress and anxiety.

Memory Enhancement: The aroma of rosemary can help improve focus and concentration by boosting the production of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter associated with cognitive function. Studies have found that inhaling the oil can help reduce feelings of anxiety and promote clarity of thought.

Circulation: Inhaling the oil can improve poor circulation, particularly in hands and feet. A study that gave a woman with Raynaud’s disease a massage with a rosemary oil blend showed it significantly improved her circulation (22, 23).

When purchasing a rosemary oil, look for one that is pure and undiluted. Reputable brands perform rigorous GC/MS testing to ensure the integrity of their oils. They also practice responsible sourcing and sustainability. Add a few drops of this oil to a diffuser in the morning and inhale for a natural energy boost.