For the last 5, 000 years, different cultures across the world have relied on plant extracts for their medicinal properties. In fact, some of the earliest forms of medication were plant extracts, and today pharmaceuticals still use plant extracts as the baseline of most prescription drugs. That just goes to prove the potent healing properties everyday plants have. Lately, though, advances in scientific knowledge allow us to use plants for more than just medicine. Look at any beauty care product shelf. Almost all of the products boast about using plant extracts, or essential oils, as one of the key ingredients. The oils when properly sourced have an abundance of sesquiterpenes, monoterpenes, and diterpenes these give the oils a lot of their power.
By adding a dash of lavender, lemon oil, frankincense, or peppermint to your cabinet, you can:
Keep colds and flues at bay
Boost your metabolism
Keep old age at bay
Soothe sore muscles
Rejuvenate your spirit
But what makes essential oils applicable in so many situations? Like mentioned before, essential oils are extracted from plants and plants have long been known to possess healing properties. The healing properties however extend further than our physical body. Essential oils are key ingredients in aromatherapy, which is a type of therapy that relies on our olfactory senses. Now, a lot of people are skeptical about aromatherapy and other types of alternative medicines.
A Brief History of Aroma Therapy and Essential Oils. If you are one of the skeptics, think back to when you last smelled a rose flower or any other flower for that matter. You felt fantastically refreshed, didn’t you? Natural fragrances have a way of pressing the right buttons on our brains and nervous system. By pressing these buttons, they stimulate a lot of activity in our body that ultimately helps the body repair itself physically, emotionally, and spiritually. That’s how aromatherapy works. Aromatherapy has been around for quite some time. Ancient Chinese, Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans used oils extracted from plants as perfumes as well as medicine. The oils were even used in special rituals. However, it wasn’t until 1928 that a French chemist by the name of Rene-Maurice Gattefosseperfected modern aromatherapy. He used lavender oil to heal burns on his hands, and it worked like magic. Later he looked into the compounds of lavender oil, investigating how it could be used to treat other wounds apart from burns. Gattefosse’s work was adopted by alternative medicine practitioners all over Europe and it wasn't long before someone figured that essential oils could be used as beauty products. Since then aromatherapy and essential oils have garnered popularity like a rolling stone in a moss forest.