understanding therapeutic grade essential oils and their benefits

Understanding Stroke and Heart Attack Recovery

According to the Heart Foundation, 920,000 Americans suffer a heart attack each year, and according to the American Stroke Association , at least 795,000 Americans suffer a new or recurrent stroke or TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack, known as a mini-stroke or warning stroke) each year, resulting in 137,000 deaths.  About 40% of those dying of stroke are men and 60% are women.  Other risk factors to be aware of include the link between Rheumatoid Arthritis, an autoimmune disease and heart attack or stroke.  According to research done by the Mayo Clinic, Rheumatoid Arthritis can double the risk of heart disease, both being related to inflammation.  Another study published in the October 3, 2012 Journal of the American Medical Association showed a strong link between Rheumatoid Arthritis and blood clots, increasing risk for both heart attack and stroke.  To further complicate matters, Rheumatoid Arthritis may also contribute to brain fog and mood swings.    The American College of Rheumatology estimates at least 1.3 million Americans suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis, with other estimates guessing the number may be more than 2 million.  It is also linked to Type II diabetes.  Dr. Brent Bauer, M.D., Editorial Board Member of the Mayo Clinic Health Letter, notes that chronic inflammation is a common link among all of these and many other health issues.  And, it is important to understand that if one does suffer a major heart attack or stroke, this root cause needs to be addressed as part of the recovery process.  Inflammation in turn, is brought on by stress.

With both heart attack and stroke, depending on the severity, physical recovery is usually the most noticeable issue and the patient’s primary goal.  Changes in diet and lifestyle can eliminate many contributing factors.  Therapeutic grade essential oils, in particular Frankincense (Boswellia carteri and Sacred Frankincense (Boswellia sacra) can be soothing and calming which can help maintain balance in keeping up with a fast-paced life.

After a trauma, proper nutrition, adequate rest, and maintaining a positive outlook are an important part of the recovery process.   However, many heart attack and stroke survivors, and their families, encounter additional obstacles, especially once the patient’s physical health has improved.  It can be sometimes difficult for family and friends to understand that going through such an experience can bring about marked changes in personality or behavior, particularly as such changes are often delayed and may not be readily apparent until the patient begins to feel better physically.

This can be further intensified if the stroke or heart attack has caused other major changes in the person’s life, such as forcing early retirement.  Retirement after decades of full-time work is a major adjustment for even a healthy person, but when it is forced by health issues, the patient has a double emotional impact, sorting out feelings of self-worth and how to occupy their time and have purpose in life. Marriage relationships are easily strained when suddenly both are at home occupying the same small space.  If financial strain is added into the mix due to medical bills and/or delays in processing retirement, even more tension is added.

A study conducted by researchers from Columbia University Medical Center further found that 25% of people who survive a stroke or TIA, suffer from PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome).  Dr. Donald Edmondson, Assistant Professor of Behavioral Medicine at the University, had previously led a similar study on heart attack patients, finding one in eight suffering severe PTSD, published in the June 2012 PLOS One Journal. Both stroke and heart attack may result from build-up of plaque in the arteries, and both are also stress related.  Having a heart attack makes one at high risk both for stroke and for additional heart attacks, and vice versa.  A heart attack and stroke may occur together, or  one soon after the other as they share the same risk factors, and in some cases it may go unnoticed that a person suffering a major heart attack may also have had a minor stroke or TIA. Both are very traumatic events in a person’s life. Consequently, even though one may physically recover from a heart attack or stroke, there can be intense changes in personality or behavior which all too often, family or friends neither understand nor know how to respond to.

PTSD may include difficulty staying asleep, the person is inclined to feel they don’t need that much sleep as subconsciously they may feel anxious or feel like they won’t wake up if they stay asleep too long.  Their sleeping habits may thus become very different, and family members may also feel nervous and afraid that something is wrong if they hear the person getting up during the night or very early and moving about the house.  To further complicate matters, a stroke, and to some degree, a heart attack, may alter a person’s behaviors even without the intensifying effect of PTSD, and many symptoms overlap.  Depression and feelings of anxiety can be common in all.  Most particularly, feelings of being overwhelmed by difficulty in focusing, and feelings of finances, relationships, and other issues skyrocketing out of control.  The person may be subject to irritability and angry outbursts that may come on suddenly and unexpectedly, frightening and confusing friends and family members.  This can become further tangled as much of the time the person may seem normal, rational, and able to function quite well.  Family may conclude the person’s actions are deliberate and try to reason them out of it – and/or conclude they have psychological issues, again trying to reason with them.

This type of response often escalates the situation as the person feels he or she is being monitored or that family members are trying to take over and control them or tell them what to do, resulting in a vicious cycle of even more irritability and angry outbursts.  Stroke and PTSD patients may both also suffer extreme sensitivity to bright light and irritated by noise.  And with any of these, emotional liability may occur, where the person may seem to be laughing one minute and crying or angry the next.  These are in fact very normal responses for someone who has experienced a traumatic health event, and while some changes may be somewhat permanent, most issues can be worked through for patients who are fortunate enough to have family who are able to handle the ups and downs and provide strong understanding and emotional support.

Therapeutic grade essential oils may help support emotional well-being:

  • Cedarwood (Cedrus atlanticus) diffused or applied topically, it is noted for its calming influence and purifying ability.  On a physical level, Cedarwood may help support  healthy circulatory and lymphatic systems .
  • Peace & Calming, a proprietary blend of Young Living, the leading producer of genuine therapeutic grade oils for more than 20  years, may be supportive in lifting the spirits and encouraging a deep and calming sense of relaxation, peace and emotional well-being.  It may help promote restful sleep, while reducing occasional bouts of nervous irritability or minor stress and anxious feelings .  Peace & Calming is a blend of five special oils:
    • Blue Tansy (Tanacetum annuum)  helps to support  the liver and lymphatic system.  It helps support emotional well being and positive outlook.
    • Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin) is very high in sesquiterpenes. It may be uplifting and refreshing to the mind and help support healthy emotional  balance, a feeling of being grounded and centered.
    • Tangerine (Citrus nobilis) helps calm occasional feelings of anxiousness and nervous tension
    • Orange (Citrus sinensis) refreshing and uplifting, and helps to elevate the mind,helps support feelings of joy and peace.
    • Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) helps support  confidence and equilibrium, and provides a relaxing influence that is balancing to the male and feeling energies
  • Valor is another specialized blend of Young Living.  Valor includes four key oils blended in a base of sweet almond oil.
    • Rosewood (Aniba rosaeodora) may be relaxing to overworked muscles and helps support a healthy immune system.
    • Blue Tansy (Tanacetum annuum) provides a pleasant fragrance with uplifting and positive influence.
    • Frankincense (Boswellia carteri) may help with occasional feelings of stress and tenseness

It is very important to use only pure, genuine therapeutic grade essential oils from a trusted source for these purposes. Family and friends can also help by simply recognizing the huge emotional aspects of recovery that require time and patience to work through, and limiting their demands and expectations.  It is important to simply be willing to listen and encourage the patient in rebuilding his or her confidence in handling their affairs.  Things that do not help:

  • hovering and worrying
  • telling them what to do as though they were a child or incompetent
  • scolding or nagging the patient about taking medications, eating habits, overdoing, etc.
  • stepping in and taking over instead of letting the patient do things for themselves
  • applying labels to the person’s behavior such as telling them they are “agitated”, “flipped their switch”, or need to avoid “triggers”
  • questioning or challenging their decisions or actions
  • trying to argue with them
  • interrupting or not listening to them
  • trying to push them into taking more drugs and/or having more medical evaluations to “fix” their behaviors
  • undermining their decisions or actions by suggesting to others they are mentally unbalanced.

What you can do:

  • above all, listen and let them finish when they are trying to tell you something
  • maintain a positive, encouraging attitude
  • believe in them and let them know it
  • recognize their whole life has changed and that changes in their responses and how they spend their time are a normal part of that
  • be patient
  • if they do become  upset, do not take it personally
  • let them know you are their for them, no matter what

To  learn more about different therapeutic grade essential oils and how they may help support a healthy lifestyle, please visit The Oil Well.

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report.

If this information has been helpful, you may make a small donation to help defray the costs of research.  Thank you!



These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and this information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.

Handling Blood Sugar Challenges

Maintaining healthy blood sugar  is becoming increasingly difficult for more and more Americans as highly processed and genetically modified foods become more and more a part of the mainstream American diet.. The US Department of Health and Human Services National Diabetes Information Clearing House estimated in 2011 there were 18.8 million people diagnosed with diabetes and another 7 million undiagnosed.    A more recent 2013 poll revealed 1 in 8 Americans have been diagnosed with Type II Diabetes.    There are a number of things which may help people regulate their blood sugar:

1)Limiting carbs and sugar is generally not enough to keep blood sugar under control unless you do some other things as well.  Make sure you do not skip meals or go long periods without a meal or snack.  Best approach is try to spread balanced nutrition between at least 5 small meals/snacks per day.

2)Avoid genetically modified (GMO) foods as they cause inflammation and blood sugar issues which tend to aggravate diabetes and heart disease . GMO means the genes have been altered in a lab by inserting genes or DNA of an unrelated species.  Some of these, rice for instance, have been modified by adding human genes. Since labeling of GMO is not required the best thing you can do is try to look for things which specifically say they are not GMO, especially look for the Non-GMO project badge.  Almost all the corn  and soy in the US is GMO so unless it specifies on the label that it is not GMO it probably is.  This also includes things like various cooking oils, corn starch, and baking powder which you find in almost all processed foods. Popcorn comes from a different seed and has not been genetically modified – yet – however it is still nice to see this on the label.  Orville Redenbacher is starting to provide this information. Half the sugar in the US is from GMO sugar beets so when you do use sugar, pure cane sugar is better.  Many companies are beginning to respond to consumer concerns and providing non GMO versions of favorite products.  Early this year General Mills released non-GMO Cheerios

 3)Magnesium deficiency – up to 80% of Americans are believed to be deficient in magnesium.  According to Dr. Morton Walker, studies confirm the connection between magnesium and diabetes, and that magnesium is needed to help regulate and control blood sugar.

4)Essential oils – Several pure, therapeutic grade essential oils such as Young Living’s may help maintain blood sugar levels that are in normal range:

  •  Juniper (Juniperus osteosperma and Juniperus scopulorum) may help support the circulatory system and  the kidneys.  It is important to maintain these systems in a healthy state for promoting excretion of toxins, purifying and detoxifying.
  • Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens) may help maintain blood sugar levels in the normal range,  and supports healthy circulation.
  • Coriander (Coriandrum sativum)  has been researched at Cairo University for its effects in lowering glucose and insulin levels. A high quality therapeutic grade Coriander oil may help support healthy pancreatic function
  • Clove (Syzygium aromaticum) has one of the highest of all ORAC scores, 1, 078,700 µTE/100g according to the Essential Oils Desk Reference 5th edition.  Clove may be helpful in maintaining normal blood sugar levels.
  • Cinnamon  Bark (Cinnamomum verum) –  supports the cardiovascular and immune systems and helps maintain healthy blood sugar.
  • Rosemary (Rosemarinus officinalis, CT cineol) helps support the liver and the immune system.
  • Dill (Anethum graveolens) has a very long medicinal history dating back to the Papyrus of Ebers.  Therapeutic grade Dill oil may help support pancreatic function,  and help maintain blood sugar levels in the normal range
  • Ocotea (Ocotea quixos) which comes from Ecuador may help calm body’s internal response to irritation.  Also helps maintain blood sugar levels in normal range.

5)Stevia – the best natural sweetener and substitute for sugar which does not have the harmful side effects of many other substitutes such as aspartame and Splenda.  Stevia may help rebuild glucose tolerance and normalizes blood sugar fluctuations.

6)Glycemic Index – To further minimize blood sugar fluctuations, it can be helpful to consult the   Revised Table for Glycemic Index and Glycemic Load.  There are many tables out there with conflicting information.  This one is the best. The glycemic index (GI) is a numerical system of measuring how much of a rise in circulating blood sugar a carbohydrate triggers–the higher the number, the greater the blood sugar response. However, the GI only gives you an idea how quickly a particular carbohydrate turns into sugar.  The Glycemic Load (GL) offers a more extensive picture by taking into consideration the amount of carbohydrate that is in a serving of food.  Be aware however that it is important not to rely on these numbers alone as all carbohydrates ultimately turn into sugar.  However, when these are considered along with spreading nutritional intake through the day into at least five small healthy meals or snacks, blood sugar variations should stabilize significantly.

7)Adequate protein – maintaining adequate protein in the diet will help control sugar cravings.  A high protein diet however, can increase strain on the kidneys.  Be sure to keep enough quality protein in the diet without going overboard.  The American Diabetes Association recommends maintaining usual protein of 15 – 20% of daily energy intake if kidney function is normal.

8)Fiber – according to the USDA, adequate fiber intake is considered to be at least 14 grams of fiber per 1000 calories consumed. Adequate fiber intake is important for stabilizing blood sugar.  95% of Americans do not get enough fiber.

9)NingXia Red – Young Living’s outstanding juice supplement NingXia Red  is high in antioxidant and provides a natural pure source of vitamins and minerals.  It helps support a healthy immune system and maintain blood sugar levels within normal range.   NingXia Red is highly concentrated and should be consumed in amounts of 1 – 4 oz per day.  It has a low glycemic index and contains no processed high fructose sweeteners.  In addition to the powerful NingXia wolfberries (Lycium barbarum), from the NingXia province of northern China which are included as a whole wolfberry puree of fruit, juice, seeds, and peel, the NingXia Red formula contains carefully selected blueberry, cherry, aronia, pomegranate, and plum fruit juices with therapeutic grade essential oils of orange, yuzu, lemon, and tangerine, patented grapeseed extract, and sweetened with pure and natural calorie free stevia extract.

10)Keep a journal of what you eat, time of day, how you feel etc.  If you miss a day or a few days, don’t give it up, just pick it up again.  You will begin to notice patterns with what you are eating and this information will be very helpful.

To  learn more about different therapeutic grade essential oils and their properties, please visit The Oil Well

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report.

If this information has been helpful you may click the donate button to contribute a small amount toward the cost of research.  Thank you!

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and this information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.

Essential Oils and the FDA

Essential oils are volatile, fragrant substances, derived from roots, bark,  stems, leaves, flowers, buds, seeds and other aerial plant parts.  Food, according to Webster’s dictionary, is defined as “material consisting essentially of protein, carbohydrate, and fat used in the body of an organism to sustain growth, repair, and vital processes and to furnish energy.”    A drug, according to Webster is, ” a substance used as a medication or in the preparation of medication.”  The Food and Drug administration (FDA) goes by the definition of the  Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act,  which is  (1) :  a substance recognized in an official pharmacopoeia or formulary (2) :  a substance intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease (3) :  a substance other than food intended to affect the structure or function of the body (4) :  a substance intended for use as a component of a medicine but not a device or a component, part, or accessory of a device.  The FDA proclaims its responsibility is to protect the public health by regulating the safety of foods, drugs, cosmetics, biological products and medical devices.  This is admirable, but a huge task.  The lines get blurred because the FDA decides things are drugs not by whether they are drugs but how they are marketed and what the “intended use” is.

For example, the FDA says in regard to essential oils, which are generally considered as cosmetics, “This principle also holds true for “essential oils.” For example, a fragrance marketed for promoting attractiveness is a cosmetic. But a fragrance marketed with certain claims, such as assertions that the scent will help the consumer sleep or quit smoking, meets the definition of a drug because of its intended use. Similarly, a massage oil that is simply intended to lubricate the skin and impart fragrance is a cosmetic, but if the product is intended to treat diseases or conditions, such as relieving arthritis  pain, it’s considered a drug.”

The problem with all of this is that in order to protect the consumer , the FDA must make methodical, makes arbitrary decisions, the effect of which may also limit peoples’ ability to educate and inform themselves, and severely limit their access to natural health options in favor of promoting synthetic patented pharmaceuticals which are big business.

According to Jeffrey Dach, MD, there is plenty of scientific research supporting the health benefits of eating cherries, but the FDA considers cherries to be unapproved drugs, and accordingly sent threatening letters to a number of fruit companies warning them not to mention any health benefits of cherries or they would pursue legal action.  In 2010, Diamond Foods received an FDA Warning letter concluding that walnuts are drugs because of links to scientific studies and proven research Diamond had listed on their web page about some of the benefits of walnuts.  This letter states, “Based on claims made on your firm’s website, we have determined that your walnut products are promoted for conditions that cause them to be drugs because these products are intended for use in the prevention, mitigation, and treatment of disease.”     At the same time the FDA advocates a Heart Healthy Diet and links to the American Heart Association’s recommendations for Healthy Diet Goals which includes four servings of nuts per week.  There appears to be no documented evidence that a single person has ever died because they ate walnuts or cherries believing them to be good for their health.  However, a study in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Vol 284, No 4, July 26th 2000, authored by Dr Barbara Starfield, MD, MPH, of the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health reported 106,000 deaths per year.  This was  actually a reprint, as the study was first published in 1996.  In case one thinks this is old information, the FDA’s own records of reported Adverse Drug Events (ADEs) admits to 98,518 deaths and 573,111 serious outcomes  (Serious outcomes include death, hospitalization, life-threatening, disability, congenital anomaly and/or other serious outcome) for 2011.

According to Dr. Joseph Mercola, 25% of Americans are now taking Statin Drugs to lower their cholesterol despite over 900 studies proving the adverse effects of statin drugs.    Many statins such as Zocor and Lipitor cannot be taken at all with grapefruit juice – not even three days later – because the reaction, which inhibits a substance in your small intestine that helps break down medications, could cause too much of the drug’s active ingredient to enter your bloodstream with potentially lethal effects.  Yet even though the drugs may be labeled with some warnings, many are not aware of the seriousness or the reason for them.  In fact, a study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal mentions that grapefruit-drug interactions have been on the increase, as many as 6 new drugs per year and over 85 total drugs may cause interactions. A study on the popular drug Avandia, prescribed for Type II diabetes, showed a 30 to 40% increased risk of heart attack.  Yet the FDA allows this and other drugs with similar well documented harmful effects to be continue to be marketed while instead endeavoring to suppress knowledge of potential health benefits of natural substances such as essential oils, or foods such as walnuts or cherries with claims they are drugs.

Many essential oils are on the FDA Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) list, or as FDA approved food additives and flavoring agents.  According to the FDA, this means “a substance is generally recognized, among qualified experts, as having been adequately shown to be safe under the conditions of its intended use, or unless the use of the substance is otherwise excluded from the definition of a food additive.”    The Code of Federal Regulations, 21 CFR 170.30 (b) also allows a substance used in food before 1958, through experience based on common use in food to be defined as GRAS.

As Aromatherapy products, essential oils are generally regulated by the FDA as cosmetics unless specific health claims are made which would cause the FDA to view a particular oil as a drug.  The cosmetic title of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act has not been significantly amended in more than 70 years, and consists of only one page as compared to 112 pages regulating foods and drugs.  It is important to note that cosmetic products are not required to list all the ingredients, particularly those considered trade secrets and fragrance.  “Fragrance” in the ingredients list on a label usually indicates some or all ingredients are synthetic.

An essential oil may be labeled as “pure”, “organic”, “wildcrafted, or “therapeutic”.  These terms mean little unless you know the company, know the source, and have a clear understanding of what they mean by these descriptions.  They do not tell you, for instance, whether expert botanists have been hired to correctly identify the correct species and seed selection.  They say nothing of soil conditions, whether the seeds were planted at the optimal time,  were free of disease, had the needed water and weather conditions during growth, and were harvested at the right time of day.  There are many variables, and they are different for each oil.  There is no standardization in the US for essential oils, and neither the FDA or any other official organization in the US which certifies whether an essential oil is pure or has therapeutic properties.  Neither does AFNOR (Association Francaise de Normalization), a standardization system of the French government with a membership of some 3000 companies, or The ISO (International Organization for Standardization), a worldwide federation of standardization bodies from 130 countries of which AFNOR is one member, representing France.  These misconceptions are easily perpetuated when information is copied on the internet from one site to another, even when the original company is not making such claims, or have defined the terms they are using, but copied information is taken out of context.  Young Living, for example, the world’s leading and the world’s longest running producer of high quality therapeutic grade oils, was the originator of the term “therapeutic grade” in describing their own oils which were defined as “Young Living Therapeutic Grade” or “YLTG”.  When they began producing essential oils for this purpose, there were very few essential oils available in America except fragrance grade, most of which were, and still are, extended or adulterated for lower cost production.  Other companies, seeing a high demand for therapeutic grade essential oils have since sought to join the market.

Another myth  that many of these companies are passing on to the customers is to create the impression that any average person can discern the purity of an oil by smelling it. There is absolutely no scientific evidence to support this theory.  There are many tasteless and odorless chemicals that can be, and frequently are, used to extend and adulterate essential oils, and other artificial means of enhancing the fragrance which will not show up on any but the most sophisticated testing equipment.  FDA labeling requirements again do not adequately represent this as the structure of an essential oil is such that even very tiny amounts of trace components, whether real or synthetic, will affect both the purity of an oil and any therapeutic action it may have.

For example, an oil could be labeled “100% pure Frankincense” and it may be all Frankincense but could be adulterated or extended with multiple species, or it could be improperly distilled.

If one is truly interested in therapeutic properties of essential oils,  it is important to know the company, and find one which adheres to the highest standards and state of the art testing.  
To  learn more about different therapeutic grade essential oils and how they may support a healthy lifestyle, please visit The Oil Well

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report.

If this information has been helpful, you may click the donate button to contribute a small amount towards the cost of research.  Thank you!

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and this information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.


Candida – The Master of Punishment and Reward

Candida (Candida albicans), as a fungus, is a bizarre  life form that is part animal, part vegetable, and part bacterial in nature.  They are eukaryotes, which comes from a Greek word meaning “true nut”.   The main part of their outer cell wall is composed of chitin, similar to what vegetables have, giving it a tough, rigid form.  The “nut” part is the membrane sac composed of lipoprotein (fats and proteins) which is the same cellular structure humans and animals have, and a nucleus at its center, which contains the DNA.   Candida can produce asexually, like bacteria, or sexually, clone itself, and alter its shape by rearranging its chromosomal structure into at least 7 different forms in order to ensure its ability to survive.  When it switches to invasive form, it becomes multi-cellular, growing hyphae or long root like structures which puncture the intestinal wall and allow it to feed – not just on sugar, but other nutrients the host should be getting.  In other words, if you have a Candida overgrowth, the Candida is stealing your nutrition.  These Candida colonies cover themselves with a thick protective biofilm which can grow up to 450 μm thick and make the colony very difficult to dislodge.  It is further protected by its tough cell wall.  

These very adaptable creatures further have the ability to simply hibernate when their food supply is inadequate, and come back out again when you consume sugar or carbohydrates – which explains why you can feel an intense rush of returning symptoms  so suddenly if you have been trying to follow a Candida diet and then eat something you shouldn’t.  When you eat sugar, the Candida ferments it and forms Acetylaldehyde, the same product that results when alcohol is broken down by the liver.  Acetylaldehyde combines with two key neurotransmitters, dopamine and seratonin, which act as chemical messengers, relaying nerve signals through the brain.  These are further broken down into morphine like molecules which occupy the same receptor sites as beta endorphins, and are highly addictive.  Next to directly consuming alcohol, production from Candida is the second major cause of Acetylaldehyde entering the brain.  Dopamine regulates a number of things including the sensation of feeling pleasure and stimulates one to seek pleasurable behaviors such as food, sex, or drugs that release dopamine, and is responsible for the strong cravings of addiction.   Serotonin also does many things, and is responsible for regulating appetite and sexual behavior as well as mood, aggression and ability to sleep.  Serotonin is also critical for proper function of the gastrointestinal tract muscles, immune function, and the cardiovascular and renal systems.  

Initially, Acetylaldehyde will release a flood of serotonin in the brain, resulting in a euphoric feeling of relaxed inhibition.  Needless to say, if you have Candida overgrowth and consume alcohol, you are getting a double whammy. However, ultimately, elevated amounts of Acetylaldehyde result in a vicious cycle of neurotransmitter depletion and displacement that play havoc with your brain chemistry and produce intense, uncontrollable cravings.   The Candida very effectively set you up for an unending roller coaster ride, rewarding you with a rush of opiate like feel good hormones when they get what they want – a feast of sugars and carbohydrates – and then punish you with uncontrollable cravings as their supply runs out and they demand more.

According to Dr. William Crook, author of 14 books and most famous for his pioneering work in studying yeast overgrowth, numerous people suffering from  with depression,  fatigue,muscle and joint pain headache, and digestive problems have been repeatedly misdiagnosed and/or have taken many tests which  find nothing wrong, but in fact they have Candida.  When the patient is treated with anti-fungal drugs, yeast spores often remain circulation in the blood-stream sometimes for years, even for decades, and can cause re-infection at any time.  As part of their growth process, Candida also secrete toxins, digestive enzymes, and fungal acid into the tissues of their host, feeding not only on sugar but on the amino acids of protein molecules they derive from the host’s tissue.  At least 79 different species of Candida endotoxins have been identified, including some which are neurotoxins that can cause damage to the central nervous system, depression, mood changes, aggression, and neurotic behaviors.  Candida further punish you by emitting these toxins when they die, known as “die-off reaction” or “Herximer effect”.  This can include symptoms such as:

  • sinus congestion, sore throat, cough
  • itching or skin rashes
  • fatigue, aches in muscles and joints
  • headaches
  • gas, bloating, digestive upsets, IBS like symptoms
  • heart palpitations, low blood pressure, fever, chills
  • blurred vision
  • anxiety or depression
  • intense cravings

These are built-in survival mechanisms of the species by discouraging the host from actions which kill the yeast, reduce their food supply or alter their comfortable living environment in which they want to continue to stay and grow and propagate.  The host is left in a constant state of putting up with unpleasant discomforts due to the Candida’s presence, which seem to intensify both when trying to get rid of the Candida, or if one slips back to forbidden foods  when temporary relief is obtained following a rigid and difficult to stick with Anti-Candida diet.  There also are differences of opinion with different Anti-Candida diets as to which foods are or are not allowed.  It will take some experimentation to find out which things work the best in your situation, but awareness is key, and even if you don’t have a Candida infection, being aware and taking preventive measures can help you avoid this very unpleasant and difficult to eradicate experience.

Some Anti-Candida diets for instance do not allow grains while others do.

In fact, thinking you are making healthy choices by trying to eat whole grain breads and cereals can feed the Candida just as easily because they are more difficult to digest.  Even many popular “natural” cereals are laden with GMOs.  (GMO refers to Genetically Modified Organisms, meaning any living thing which has had its genes modified by adding a gene from an unrelated species.) Wheat is the third leading crop in the U.S. and the U.S. supplies about 10% of the world’s wheat.  Many countries will not accept crops that are GMO, so for wheat growers, the topic is a sensitive one.  The FDA has not approved genetic modification of wheat and America’s wheat crop is supposed to be non-GMO, except last year some escaped  GMO wheat seed from biotech research giant Monsanto that mysteriously appeared in the field of an Oregon farmer eight years after testing was supposed to have been over with.   In spite of this fiasco, Monsanto has persisted with their experiments of unapproved GMO wheat and has just proclaimed the first ever GMO wheat crop will soon be ready, where it is growing at an undisclosed field in North Dakota.   Monsanto owns 90 – 95% of the seed companies out there.  However, even if our wheat is not GMO, it has been so intensively hybridized during the past 60 years to create hardier, more profitable crops, that its nutritional profile has completely changed, resulting in a myriad of health issues. These wheats contain phytic acid which prevents proper absorption of needed minerals like magnesium, calcium, iron, and zinc.  They contain lectins which cause inflammation and insulin resistance. They contain amylopectin A, which raises blood sugar faster even than table sugar. Two slices of whole wheat bread will spike blood sugar more than eating a candy bar. They contain gliadin a protein within gluten which we cannot fully digest, contributing to Leaky Gut Syndrome.  Corn is the largest US crop, and 90% of it is GMO, and 80% of it is controlled by Monsanto.  94% of US soy (90% controlled by Monsanto), and 95% of the sugar beets (which come from Monsanto and represent more than half of the sugar in the US) are also GMO.

Also thanks to Monsanto, use of the popular herbicide Roundup (glyphosphate) which they created has tripled since 1997, and is the excuse for all the “Roundup Ready” genetically engineered crops.  Last May, the Environmental Protection Agency adopted new standards allowing glyphosphate in oilseed crops such as flax, soybeans, and canola to be doubled to 40 ppm.  This is more than 100,000 times the amount needed to induce breast cancer cells.  The EPA also increased allowable levels of glyphosphate in food crops from 200 ppm to 6000 ppm.  Organ damage has occurred in animals as low as 0.1 ppm.  Glyphosphate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup weed killer is the word’s best selling herbicide, used in over 150 crops in over 90 countries.  A recent European study tested volunteers from 18 countries, all living in cities, and who had never before touched or handled glyphosphate.  Yet 44% of those tested had glyphosphate in their urine.  In a bizarre twist, the Supreme Court has just decided to side with Monsanto whose patented GMO seeds are finding their way into the crops of small organic farmers and contaminating them. Not only are these farmers unable to sue Monsanto for damages to their crops, instead Monsanto has filed more than 100 lawsuits against these farmers for growing their patented seed – which the farmers did not want, did not plant, and had no intention of growing.  But the Supreme Court agreed these farmers have to pay royalties to Monsanto for using their patented seed. Monsanto owns 1676 seed and plant patents and 40% of US cropland or 151.4 million acres are planted with Monsanto’s GMO glyphosphate laden crops.  64 countries require GMO labeling, but the US does not, largely due to Monsanto’s influence. What does all this have to do with Candida?  Well, as it turns out, glyphosphate causes radical disruption of the life cycle of the bacteria in your boy – and it preferentially attacks the good bacteria, allowing Candida and other harmful species to take over.  

However, as increasing numbers of people are becoming aware of these facts, the struggle with Candida is not entirely lost.

Here are some key points to remember:

  1. Candida attacks and remains in individuals with a weakened immune system.  Therefore, doing everything you can to build up and strengthen your immune system is key.  Whatever diet you choose to follow, make sure it allows for adequate nutrients, and take additional supplements as needed.  Take a fiber supplement and drink plenty of water to help flush out toxins, and try to plan your schedule to ensure you get enough uninterrupted rest each night.
  2. Candida feeds on sugars and carbohydrates, including complex carbohydrates.  To get Candida under control, these foods must be minimized as much as possible, making every effort to avoid GMO foods which favor Candida.  Foods to avoid include soy, corn, canola, cottonseed, beet sugar, Hawaiian papaya, crookneck squash, and some varieties of zucchini, unless labeled 100% USDA Organic.  Focus on adequate amounts of protein, healthy fats and  fresh, preferably organic low carb alkalizing vegetables, and healthy fats.  Avoid processed, boxed, canned, and packaged foods.
  3. Avoid using glyphosphate weed killers on your lawn, garden or crops and support organic growers.  New studies conducted in Mississippi and Iowa found glyphosphate  present in 60 – 100% o all air and water samples.
  4. If you eat meat or dairy products, choose sources from quality organic grass-fed individuals
  5. Help support intestinal function and  balance of healthy bacteria by consuming daily: 1-4 oz aloe vera juice, 1-4 oz Young Living NingXia Red, 2 – 4 T daily of pure, preferably organic coconut oil, Redmond Clay, Young Living Megacal, 8 oz plain organic Kefir, 2 T of organic sauerkraut, and if possible 8 oz home-made bone broth (made from quality organic grass-fed beef bones or free range chickens).
  6. To help support an intestinal environment that favors beneficial bacteria:
  • 2-4 T pure organic coconut oil
  • Young Living brands of : Lemongrass,(Cymbopogon flexuosus), Thyme, (Thymus vulgaris, CT thymol), Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), Bergamot (Citrus bergamia), Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus), Peppermint (Mentha piperita), and Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia).  Take 2-3 drops of any two oils from this list (which are on the GRAS list for dietary supplement ) combined with pure organic olive oil in clear vegetable capsules, then rotating to two others the next time, up to 4 times per day.
  • Young Living essential oil blends of Thieves {Clove† (Syzygium aromaticum), Lemon† (Citrus limon), Cinnamon† (Cinnamomum verum), Eucalyptus† (Eucalyptus radiata), and Rosemary† (Rosmarinus officinalis CT 1,8 cineol).; DiGize {Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus), Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Peppermint (Mentha piperita), Juniper (Juniperus osteosperma and J. scopulorum), Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), Lemongrass (Cymbopogon flexuosus), Anise (Pimpinella anisum), and Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin); Longevity {Thyme (Thymus vulgaris CT thymol), Orange (Citrus aurantium), Clove (Syzygium aromaticum) and Frankincense (Boswellia carteri)}; and ImmuPower {Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis), Mountain Savory (Satureja montana), cistus (Cistus ladanifer), Ravensara (Ravensara aromatica), Frankincense (Boswellia carteri), oregano (Origanum vulgare), Clove (Syzygium aromaticum), Cumin (Cuminum cyminum) and idaho tansy (Tanacetum vulgare) may also be used.  For blends, take one at a time, 4-6 drops with olive oil in clear veg caps, up to 4x day, rotating with other blends or singles.
  • Young Living MegaCal and/or Young Living Alkazyme formula will help maintain and support proper pH balance of the digestive tract.
  • Other helpful supplements include Garlic Oil, Pau D’Arco, Black Walnut, and Grapefruit Seed Extract.  Try to rotate these.
  • drinking water with fresh lemon will also help alkalize and cleanse the system

Go slowly with diet and anti-fungals at first to minimize die-off effects.  You will need to experiment and find which foods seem to be your personal triggers and avoid those at least for a time.   Some you may be able to add back in later, however all sugars, GMO and processed foods should be kept as minimal as possible.  Organic foods wherever possible are worth the effort, and/or fresh produce from your own garden or other small local growers.  For me, switching to organic full fat milk made a huge difference, especially if it is from grass-fed cows.  If you can find a good source of raw milk, even better.  Raw or organic goat milk is also an option.    Avoid heavy and/or difficult to digest meals as these will provide a ready source of food for Candida and encourage a Candida population explosion.  For sweets, try minimal amounts of dark chocolate, at least 72% cacao occasionally.  Organic raw  honey, organic maple syrup, and organic blackstrap unsulphured molasses from pure cane sugar may be used occasionaly as sweeteners in small amounts.  Many Anti-Candida diets suggest avoiding fermented foods but some of these such as organic apple cider vinegar, plain organic kefir, organic sauerkraut or other organic fermented vegetable can be very helpful.  Remember that meats and cheeses tend to be acid forming foods and should be eaten in moderation and balanced with alkalizing foods.  It will take time and patience and persistence, but balance can be restored.  However, if your struggle is seemingly endless despite diligently trying your best, it also possible you may have SIBO (Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth) either instead of, or in conjunction with, Candida.  Most of the symptoms for SIBO are very similar to Candida.

To  learn more about different therapeutic grade essential oils and how they may support a healthy lifestyle, please visit The Oil Well

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report.

If this information has been helpful, you may click the donate button to contribute a small amount towards the cost of research. Thank you!

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and this information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.


Essential Oils and Maintaining a Healthy Immune System

One of the risks of hospital stays or visits to other healthcare settings is contracting MRSA, or Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) Infections. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) statistics updated for 2013 indicate at least 2 million people in the U.S. become infected each year with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics and at least 23,000 people die each year as a direct result of these infections. Many more people die from other conditions that were complicated by an antibiotic-resistant infection. In a medical setting, MRSA can cause life-threatening pneumonia or infections of wounds or surgical sites, or in the bloodstream. MRSA infections are easily transmitted from person to person by direct contact with the skin, clothing, utensils or other objects, or general area touched or used by an infected person. They may often begin at a wound or surgical site, or location where medical devices such as catheters and IV lines are placed. MRSA infections are generally very resistant to most drugs and antibiotics, making them difficult to treat. Studies show that about 33% of people carry MRSA in their nose without any sign of illness. A number of serious infections can result if staph enters the bloodstream, resulting in a condition known as a condition known as staphylococcal sepsis.  Even though incidence of MRSA infections have decreased slightly in the last few years due to more awareness, they are still a serious problem, tied to overuse of antibiotics for both humans and livestock.

Certain therapeutic grade essential oils can help maintain and support balance of healthy body systems. RC, a proprietary Young Living blend contains  several species of Eucalyptus: Eucalyptus globulus which helps support a healthy respiratory system.  Eucalyptus radiata may help support the ears, nose and throat as well as healthy lung function.  It is may help calm irritation.  Eucalyptus australiana ,  Eucalyptus citriodora, are also calming and may help provide bronchial support.  Also included in this blend are:  Myrtle (Myrtus communis)  which supports the respiratory system.  It is very gentle and may be used for this purpose with children older than two years of age.  Pine (Pinus sylvestris)  may be useful in helping support the respiratory system.    Spruce (Picea mariana)  helps support the nervous system as well as the respiratory and immune systems. Marjoram (Origanum majorana) provides support to the muscles and respiratory system.  Lavender (Lavandula angustiolia) helps support circulation, soothes irritation, and is calming.  True pure therapeutic grade Lavender is very soothing, cooling, and gentle for topical application, however most brands of Lavender oil are extended or adulterated.  Young Living Lavender is the highest quality and reliably safe to use in this regard.  Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens)  helps support healthy circulation and normal lymph function.  It is soothing and relaxing as well as refreshing, also helping to support the immune system.  Peppermint (Mentha piperita)  is excellent for supporting the sinuses and respiratory function. It also has a long history of being soothing for digestion.

Lemongrass, (Cymbopogon flexuosus) may support digestion and detoxification.  It also supports lymph flow, circulation, and healthy joint and cartilege function.  Other oils which may help maintain a strong immune system include  Lemon Myrtle (Backhousia citriodora),  Mountain Savory (Satureja montana) Melissa (Melissa officinalis), and Cinnamon Bark (Cinnamomum verum).

It is very important however, to ensure that one uses only the highest quality therapeutic grade oils which have undergone extensive testing with state of the art equipment, and matched against a comprehensive library of documented therapeutic components to ensure these constituents are present in the required amounts.  Young Living is the first and by far the oldest company in the U.S. which has a history of producing high quality therapeutic grade oils for more than 20 years.  They have compiled an essential oil reference library with more than 280,000 compound references, much larger and more extensive than any other of its kind, and are the only essential oils company in the world using instruments matched and calibrated to those at the National Center for Scientific Reserch in France (CNRS) by Dr. Herve Casabianca.  Young Living is also the only company who hires experienced botanists and other trained experts to personally verify the entire Seed to Seal process from selecting the correct species of plant for seeds, planting, growing, harvesting, distilling, and bottling for both their own farms and partner growers and distillers all over the world, instead of simply relying on the word of remote suppliers that their standards have been met, or soil sample tests which may or may not be from the actual crop in question to verify that no chemicals or pesticides were used.  Young Living oils are also tested at both their own and third-party labs with far more testing than used by any other company, and they continue to lead the way in cutting edge research regarding the therapeutic benefits of essential oils. More than fifty U.S. hospitals use Young Living oils exclusively, and the list continues to expand.

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report

If this information has been helpful to you, please consider a small donation to defray the costs of time and research:

To  learn more about different therapeutic grade essential oils and how they may benefit a healthy lifestyle, please visit The Oil Well

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and this information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.

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The Long Road Back – Recovery After Massive Heart Attack

What is the difference between a “heart attack” and a “massive heart attack”? As the name implies, a massive heart attack is a much bigger deal.  One usually recovers from a mild or minor heart attack, and it may not even immediately be noticed.  A massive heart attack however, generally is associated with extensive blockage to the major arteries, and involves major damage to the heart muscle.  The left anterior descending artery to the heart (LAD) feeds the bulk of your heart muscle, and when a blockage occurs in this artery, it is often called a widow maker as it commonly results in death.   According to leading cardiologist Dr. Chauncey Crandall, heart disease is often a silent killer, with 25% of heart attacks happening without clear symptoms, or when symptoms do occur, they are often vague and may be attributed to indigestion, flu, fatigue, or ordinary muscle pain.   Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Americans and is responsible for nearly 1/3 of all deaths.   Half of all people who die from heart attacks have cholesterol readings in the normal range.   The typical American diet is unfortunately loaded with two main root causes of heart disease, which are sugar and fat, further aggravated by chemicals and preservatives which cause inflammation.  Dr. Crandall explains that 800,000 Americans have a first heart attack every year with another half million having a second or third heart attack.

If you do survive a massive heart attack, what then?  Many may undergo treatments such as open heart bypass surgery, angioplasty, or stents to help restore blood flow to the heart.  However, in some cases, these types of options may be very limited or simply not possible due to the extent of blockage and damage to the heart.  For individuals over 65, cardiogenic shock is more of a risk when a heart attack occurs, meaning the heart muscle may be too damaged to pump an adequate amount of blood to the organs and tissues.  These in turn will begin to suffer and multi-organ failure may occur.  Major life support measures are generally needed with sedation to give the organs a rest, and a delicate balance maintained to try and wean the patient off of these if the organs are able to recover, generally a long and tedious process.

However, even if you or a loved one find yourself in this situation, confined to a hospital bed, there are still things you can do to help facilitate your recovery.  One of the most difficult things to overcome is the fatigue and weakness when physical therapy comes to try and help you get up and moving again.  All of the drugs, tubes, and necessary procedures on top of the shock to the system and damage to the heart will add to the difficult adjustment your body is going through, and when confined to bed, muscle tone is quickly lost.  Any little bit of moving around, sitting up, or taking a few steps all help to regain your strength.  There are also some muscle tone exercises you can do while lying in bed that will help, even just tightening and relaxing your muscles.  When lying on your back, you can stretch and point your toes downward as far as you can, try to hold to a count of 10.  Then bring your feet back straight, toes pointing toward ceiling and you will feel the muscles tightening on the back of your legs.  Again try to hold to a count of 10, and do these whenever you can.  It will help circulation and the muscle tone in your ankles and lower legs.  Also, practice deep breathing whenever you can.  Try to hold your mouth closed and breath in slowly and deeply through your nose, using your diaphragm to really fill your lungs, then exhale slowly through your mouth.  This will really help as most people tend to develop a habit of shallow breathing.  The deep breathing will deliver much more oxygen through your system, clear your mind and help you to feel better.  Rubbing a little essential oil on your hands such as Lavender and/or Peppermint can provide a refreshing and uplifting fragrance that  may help with the breathing exercises, or you may even be able to bring a diffuser into the hospital room.  Ask your nurse or doctor if you can use essential oils.  Dr. Woodson Merrell, Chairman of the Department of Integrative Medicine at Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan discusses the use of  Young Living Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils at Beth Israel Hospital, and in fact, more than 50 hospitals regularly use Young Living oils for their soothing therapeutic benefits to assist in a variety of recovery settings.

Following a heart attack, it is important to understand something called your Ejection Fraction number.  The heart contracts during each heartbeat, pushing blood out of the filled right and left ventricles, and then they relax and refill with blood.  Dr. Carolyn Dean stresses the importance of Magnesium in keeping this in balance.  The Ejection Fraction  is usually measured in the left ventricle, which is the main pumping chamber of the heart and refers to the percentage of blood that is pumped out of the filled ventricle, and this is generally done with an  echocardiogram which uses sound waves to produce and image of your heart.  A normal Ejection Fraction number will be between 50 – 75.  Following a heart attack this number may be low, even 30 or less.  However, this does not necessarily mean you are more likely to die, and your doctor will work with you on a realistic plan of medications, diet, and exercise to help improve this number.  New studies indicate excercise may stimulate new stem cells to grow and repair the heart.  Even if you can’t do much, just walking for as little as 30 minutes a day could be beneficial, and this is still true even if it has to be broken up into shorter segments.  Your doctor will work with you to help establish a plan of short term reachable goals that will best fit your personal situation and recovery needs.

Several essential oils may be comforting and soothing during this time.  Frankincense – either Boswellia carteri or Boswellia sacra can be beneficial as a tonic to help refresh and soothe the system.  Other oils which may be comforting for diffusing or massage include Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), Elemi (Canarium luzonicum) which, like Frankincense are all high in monoterpenes, and Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha) and Sandalwood (Santalulm album)which  are high in sesquiterpines.   Marjoram (Origanum majorana) is especially relaxing and calming for massage.

It is important to pay special attention and work with your doctor to follow the best plan for diet, exercise, medications, supplements, and  any other measures you can take to help your heart heal as excessive scarring can cause the heart to become electrically unstable.  Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) has a delightful fragrnace that also is soothing and calming. Ylang ylang may also help support a healthy cardiovascular sytem and  Helichryssum (Helichrysum italicum) may help support healthy circulation and has a subtle pleasing fragrance that is subconsciously uplifting.

Its also important to discuss with your doctor and nutritionist what foods and supplements may impact any medications you may be taking.    For example, The National Institutes of Health Clinical Center Drug-Nutrient Interaction Task Force offers guidance on the commonly prescribed blood-thinner Coumadin, and dietary Vitamin K.  Vitamin K or K1 found in leafy green vegetables is necessary for clotting, and Coumadin works against this, so it is important to keep intake of Vitamin K foods consistent to achieve the proper balance.  Vitamin K or K1 is not to be confused with Vitamin K2 Menaquinones which are derived from fermented foods, such as cheese, curds, and natto (fermented soybeans), or synthesized from healthy bacteria in the large intestine.   However, balance of Vitamin K2 along with Vitamin D is necessary for heart health, as these work together to ensure that calcium is properly directed in your body to build strong bones and teeth instead of forming kidney stones, plaque in the arteries, deposits in your joints or even salivary gland stones.

Aroma Life, a special essential oil blend formulated by Young Living contains Cypress, Marjoram, Ylang Ylang, and Helichryssum, and is a blend useful for helping to support the Lympthatic, Cardiovascular, and Circulatory systems.  Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) is also very valuable as it is wonderfully soothing, calming, and balancing, helping to generate a positive mood.  Ensuring that you only use pure, therapeutic grade essential oils which have been extensively tested for the highest quality standards is paramount.

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report

If you like this report and would like to make a small donation to help defray the costs of time and research, you may click the donate button here:

To  learn more about different therapeutic grade essential oils and how they may help support a healthy lifestyle, please visit The Oil Well

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and this information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease. 

So much Lavender

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) is one of the most popular of all essential oils, due to its beautiful, classic fragrance which has long been popular for many personal care products, soaps, shampoos, and perfumes.  A member of the Lamiaceae or mint family, it has sources in Utah, Idaho, and France among others, and is steam distilled from the flowering tops.  Some of the key constituents of properly distilled therapeutic grade Lavender essential oil are Linalyl Acetate (24-45%) and Linalool (25-38%).  Caution is advised as these two ingredients in particular are often synthetically manufactured and used to extend Lavender oil, which may still be labeled as pure but is much cheaper to produce resulting in more profits for the manufacturer.  Labs have perfected these synthetic substitutes to have a lovely lavender fragrance pleasing to most consumers who are convinced that if it smells nice you are getting a high quality pure product.  Unfortunately, this is really not true, but the myth is further perpetuated by some Aromatherapists and companies  who try to teach consumers that their own nose will tell them if the oil is high quality or not.  However, very few average consumers have any experience or frame of reference to judge this by, and the only thing they really understand is whether a fragrance is pleasing or not.  They might be able to describe a fragrance as sweet, flowery, pungent, etc, but they cannot tell accurately whether synthetics are present, and the message being put out leads them to expect that if they are, they would be able to smell some obvious or unpleasant “chemical” quality.  In fact, many synthetic additives use to adulterate or extend popular oils such as lavender are odorless and tasteless.  So popular is Lavender essential oil that the amounts sold and added to perfumes and personal care products far exceeds the amount of real Lavender grown and distilled for essential oils, which points to the synthetic origins of many of these products.

Many Lavender oils are also often extended by blending with various less expensive hybrid species of Lavandin (Lavendula x hybrida), which is usually high in camphor.  However, Tasmanian Lavandin has a chemistry very similar to true Lavender that is low in camphor and high-resolution Gas Chromatography (GC) must be used to show this difference.  Yet if synthetic Linalyl Acetate is added, even GC testing can’t tell whether the compound is synthetic or natural, only that it is present.  In this case, Chiral Column GC testing, which allows the chemist to identify structural differences of the same compound, is necessary to determine whether the oil is pure or synthetic.  Very few essential oils companies will go to this extent to determine purity in their testing.  Most simply choose to rely on the word and reputation of their suppliers.

Over the 30 year period 1967-98, the production of true lavender oil in France dropped from 87 tons to only 12 tons, while worldwide demand over the same period grew more than 100 percent.  According to the Essential Oils Desk Reference, Fifth Edition, for every kilogram of pure essential oil produced, it is estimated that between 10 and 100 kilograms of synthetic essential oils are created.

Synthetic Linalyl Acetate is very different from the pure and natural form found in true Lavender oil.  The synthetic form is mildly toxic to humans and toxic to fish.  Synthetic  Linalool as it is sometimes called, is also potentially harmful.  It can lead to depression, slowed motor activity, and cause respiratory issues among other things, yet it is a common ingredient in many soaps, shampoos, lotions, creams and many other personal care products.

Some labels may refer to an ingredient as “nature identical”.  This is a clever marketing ploy that misleads people into thinking they are getting a natural product when in fact, “nature identical” simply means it is a laboratory created synthetic product with a molecular structure which may copy that of the main constituents found in the natural product.  However, no such product is truly “nature identical”.  A chemist may build these synthetic copies using 5 to 15 of  the key components and think he has done a complex thing, but in truth a natural essential oil has literally hundreds of biochemical constituents, in trace amounts, all of which play some role in the overall therapeutic balance, even if the percentage seems to be negligible.  There is no way for a laboratory to duplicate this complexity.  If you were baking a cake and your recipe called for 2 cups of flour, 1 cup sugar and 2 tsp baking powder, do you think it would be ok to leave out the baking powder because it is a small amount compared to the other ingredients?  What would happen to your cake if you did?  Well, this is the logic that is followed in trying create synthetic imitations of essential oils in the laboratory. Some of them have gotten clever enough that it takes state of the art testing to tell the difference and thereby many companies and suppliers are able to pass off inferior products on the unsuspecting consumer, all for the purpose of increasing their own profits.

Natural Linalyl Acetate and Linalool as found in true Lavender oil on the other hand, have been studied for their anti-inflammatory properties.  Pure therapeutic grade Lavender essential oil may help promote a more relaxed sleep, at the same time supporting strong mental focus and concentration when awake.   Young Living’s St. Maries Lavender, grown on their St. Maries farm in the pure clear air of northern Idaho, is especially delightful with a luxurious fragrance and soothing qualities.   For these oils it is very important to ensure you have a trusted source of high quality, carefully tested therapeutic grade oils.  To learn more about therapeutic grade essential oils and how they may support a healthy lifestyle,  please visit The Oil Well.

For more information on the leading essential oil companies, their history, testing, and quality standards, check out the 45 page Young Living/DoTerra report

If you like this report and would like to make a small donation to help defray the costs of time and research, you may click the donate button here:

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA, and this information is for educational purposes only and not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.