Knock Out Cold and Flu Germs with Essential Oils
What are essential oils?
Essential oils are concentrated extracts that have been distilled from aromatic trees, herbs, and grasses. They are located in leaves, stems, fruits, roots, flowers, and bark of different plants. The essential oils are responsible for the plant’s unique aroma.
Some of the most powerful anti-microbials known today
Essential oils have been used in perfume making for a long time. It is easy to overlook the important fact that essential oils are some of the most powerful anti-microbials known today. I think they should be used in every home during cold and flu season since they are very important in fighting many types of infectious disease.
Essential oils have been used for centuries to fight the symptoms of the common cold. You can add them to your bathwater, diffuse them in the air you breathe or even apply them directly to your skin. Essential oils help the body fight off infection and serve to strengthen the immune system. In her book The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils, Julia Lawless explains that essential oils can boost the body’s defense system against bacteria, fungi and infections.
Here is our list of essential oils and essential oil blends that will help you stay healthy this cold and flu season. If you are unfamiliar with essential oils, please seek the advice of a qualified aromatherapist before using them. Be sure to use in moderation and to dilute or blend the essential oils correctly. Also, realize that some oils are contraindicated in certain conditions.
1. Rosemary Essential Oil
Rosemary (Rosmarinus) works as an antiseptic and an antimicrobial agent. In The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy, Valerie Ann Worwood suggests using a blend of rosemary, lemon and eucalyptus oils to massage the nose, cheekbones and temples in order to relieve congestion and discomfort.
2. Thyme Essential Oil
Thyme essential oil is antiseptic and anti-bacterial. Many aromatherapists recommend you use it in a blend with tea tree, lemon and eucalyptus oils in the bath or in an inhaler to help fight congestion. Do not use this oil if you have high blood pressure, however.
3. Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender essential oil has antiseptic and antimicrobial properties, and it is gentle enough for use with children.
4. Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint essential oil (Mentha piperita) has antiseptic and anti-viral properties and can be useful as an expectorant. Use peppermint oil in a steam inhaler, but not where babies or young children are present.
5. Pine Essential Oil
Pine essential oil, derived from the pine tree helps to clear the nasal passages. It also can be helpful in relieving sore throat pain.
6. Lemon Essential Oil
Lemon essential oil (citrus limon), with its high vitamin content, helps boost the body’s immune system and stimulates the production of white blood cells, thereby increasing your ability to fight off illness. Lemon oil also improves circulation throughout the body.
7. Eucalyptus Essential Oil
As an antiviral and a decongestant, eucalyptus essential oil (eucalyptus globulus) helps treat colds and congestion.
8. Tea Tree Essential Oil
Extracted from the tea tree (Melaleuca), which is native to Southeast Queensland and New South Wales, Australia, tea tree oil has antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic and antiviral properties. Used in an inhaler or in a bath, tea tree oil helps you fight the congestion and the resulting discomfort caused by the cold or the flu.