Ways to Use Essential Oils

Author: Dr. Larita
April 23, 2014

Essential oils can be used in many ways. This is a discussion of the three general methods that will help you get the best use from them.

Body Methods

  • Perfume – dissolve your essential oil (the strength is up to you) in oil and apply to the body as you would perfume.
  • Tissue or handkerchief – apply 1 drop and sniff as needed.
  • Inhaled as a vapor - use 2-3 drops  of essential oil. Pour hot water into a bowl, add the oil, cover your head with a towel and lean over the bowl with your face about 10 inches away and with your eyes closed. Breath deeply through your nose for 1 to 5 minutes, take a break and do it again as needed or until the water cools.
  • Massage oil -  use a maximum of 5 drops to each teaspoon of carrier oil or as directed in a particular recipe. Purchase a brown glass bottle and measure out your base oil. You can use sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, grapeseed oil, shea oil, coconut oil, etc. Add the essential oil and blend it into the carrier oil by turning the bottle upside down several times and then rolling the bottle briskly between your hands. You only need about a teaspoon of this mixture poured into the palm of your hand to massage the whole body.

This discussion will be continued with two other methods.


Stress Free Scents

Author: Dr. Larita
April 22, 2014

Aromatherapy is a form of alternative medicine that has helped many adherents to relax and experience a sense of profound calmness. In today’s hustle-and-bustle business world, it’s nice to have a pleasant respite. For many people, that means inhaling the soothing scent of essential oils. These oils affect much more than just the nose and the body’s olfactory senses. They travel to the limbic system to enhance mood.

Aromatherapy essential oils are derived by extracting and boiling down the essence of beneficial plants. These oils have been shown to relieve sleep disorders and to improve people’s overall outlook on life. If you are overworked and stressed out, take a moment to pamper yourself with some much needed aromatherapy.


What to Use for Dry Skin

Author: Dr. Larita
April 21, 2014

Are you confused about whether to use an ointment, a lotion or a cream to relieve your dry skin? These terms describe the way skin care products are prepared. Ointments are prepared using oil and may stay on your skin longer but many people don’t like them because they are  greasy and don’t soak into the skin. Creams are less oily than ointments and can be made from natural products so they do soak into the skin easily. Lotions are water-based and get absorbed into the skin quickly, causing instant, but not long-lasting, relief. For longer-lasting relief, choose ointments or creams.

If you have dry or itchy skin, avoid using too much soap, antiperspirants,  hot baths or anything else that removes your natural oils. Skin dryness and itchiness is worse when the humidity is low and you should definitely avoid stress, too much exposure to the sun, and smoking or secondhand smoke.


Enjoying a Day Off!

Author: Dr. Larita
April 18, 2014

happy easter

 

I’m taking a day off from writing today. Enjoy the holiday.


Black Seed Oil

Author: Dr. Larita
April 17, 2014

Black seed or Nigella Sativa is cultivated in Russia, Turkey, Egypt, Arabia, Oman, Ethiopia, Middle East, India, Bangladesh, France, and Germany. It is also known as black seed oil, Kalonji or the seed of blessing. This is a specialty oil that is popular in preparations for acne, burns and wrinkles. It is dark in color with a pungent herbal scent and is often used in middle eastern cooking as a spice or a topping. I first became aware of its edible use when I tasted Naan bread, which I love, and other pastries that use this seed.

Black seeds are extremely beneficial as a food in many aspects of health, both healing and preventative. It has been used traditionally in the Middle East and Southeast Asian countries to treat ailments including asthma, bronchitis, rheumatism and related inflammatory diseases; to increase milk production in nursing mothers; to promote digestion and to fight parasitic infections. Black seed oil has been used to treat skin conditions such as eczema and boils and it is also used to treat symptoms of the common cold. More than 200 university studies conducted since 1959 have confirmed many traditional uses of this powerful seed with anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine properties among them.

Black seed oil is a rich source of essential fatty acids – omega 3 and omega 6, the building blocks of cells and is commonly used for the relief of acne, psoriasis, eczema and pain. It is also commonly used in joint massage and headache. Black seed oil is said by some to be “Cleopatra’s beauty secret.” The Prophet Mohammad stated in his “Hadith” that black seed oil cures every illness except death. The black seed was also found in the Egyptian Pharoah Tutankhamen’s tomb.

 


Fix Dry Hair Natural

Author: Dr. Larita
April 16, 2014

If your hair is dry, it is probably because your sebaceous glands are not producing enough oil to keep it  healthy. The protective oils produced by your hair are essential for protecting it from the elements but exposure to sun, wind, heat, and chemicals can damage hair, leaving it frizzy.  Split ends, broken shafts and a rough texture are all signs that your hair is lacking a sufficient sebum coating.

Dry hair fixes include:

  • Using a very gentle shampoo followed by a cream conditioner that you leave on for several minutes (on your hair, not your scalp)
  • Avoiding the use of chemical products such as hair dye and styling products because they can be very harsh on hair and wearing a hat if you’re going to be out in the sun, and a swimming cap if you’re going to be in chlorinated water
  • Adding a few drops of oil (coconut, jojoba, olive oil, etc) will give protective moisture to hair if you simply place a few drops  in your hands, rub your hands together and then work through your hair to give it a light sheen
  • Drying hair on the low or coolest setting if you must blow it dry
  • Combing your hair in the shower with conditioner in it because this is the time your hair is at its smoothest and strongest; otherwise, use a boar bristle brush, which will be more gentle and less likely to tear hair, as well as helping to distribute oil through the hair
  • Washing your hair less often and using a weekly deep conditioner
  • Having your hair trimmed if you are experiencing split ends- at least 1/2 inch above the splits


The health benefits of lavender essential oil are so numerous that I am continuing yesterday’s blog today. More uses for this important essential oil are:

  • Respiratory ailments-lavender oil is used for respiratory problems including throat infections, flu, cough, cold, asthma, sinus congestion, bronchitis, whooping cough, laryngitis, and tonsillitis. The best way to use the oil in this case is through the direct inhalation or aerial diffusion method.
  • Skin care-lavender essential oil, because of  its antiseptic and antifungal properties is used to treat skin disorders such as acne, wrinkles, psoriasis, and other inflammations. It also heals wounds, cuts, burns, and sunburns rapidly because it speeds the formation of scar tissue. A blend of lavender and chamomile essential oil is used to treat eczema.
  • Hair care-lavender essential oil is useful for the hair because it is very effective on lice, lice eggs, or nits.
  • Blood circulation-lavender oil is also good for improving blood circulation, lowering blood pressure and treating hypertension.
  • Digestion-lavender oil is useful for digestion because it stimulates the production of gastric juices and bile thereby aiding in the treatment of indigestion, stomach pain, colic, flatulence, vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Immunity-regular use of lavender essential oil through massage, inhalation therapy, or aerial diffusion provides resistance to diseases.
  • Insect repellent-lavender oil is an effective way to repel mosquitoes and moths.

Pregnant or breastfeeding women and diabetics should avoid using lavender  essential oil. People with sensitive skin may develop an allergic reaction.


Lavender Essential Oil Part I

Author: Dr. Larita
April 14, 2014

Lavender essential oil is the most basic oil to have in your home because of its various health benefits. It is a natural antibiotic, antiseptic, antidepressant, sedative, and detoxifier. Lavender oil promotes healing, prevents scarring, stimulates the immune system, and factors in the healing process by stimulating the cells of an injury to rejuvenate more quickly.

The health benefits of lavender essential oil include:

  • Nervous system-its calming scent is a tonic for the nerves making it a great remedy for migraines, headaches, anxiety, depression, nervous tension and emotional stress. Its clean aroma removes  exhaustion and restlessness and increases mental activity.
  • Sleep-it induces sleep making it an inexpensive natural cure for insomnia.
  • Pain relief-it is a great natural remedy for pains caused by tense or sore muscles, muscular aches, rheumatism, sprains, and backache. A regular massage with lavender oil provides relief from pain in the joints.
  • Urine flow-it is good for urinary disorders because it stimulates urine production,  helps restore hormonal balance, reduces cystitis or inflammation of the urinary bladder, and reduces associated cramps.

Lavender has so many healthful benefits that I will continue this blog tomorrow.


Treatment for Wrinkles

Author: Dr. Larita
April 11, 2014

wrinklesLaugh lines are one thing, but wrinkles that start making you feel like your skin looks older than you feel are another thing completely! Here are some ways to take care of those lines.

1.  Sunscreen is the number one way to prevent sun damage and wrinkling.  Apply any time you’ll be spending time outdoors, whether it’s sunny or cloudy, summer or winter.

2.  Vitamin A (Retinoid) Creams.  These creams can increase sun sensitivity, making number one even more important!  Vitamin A stimulates collagen production and stops cells from breaking down further.

3.  Alpha Hydroxy Acids exfoliate and increase collagen.  Just remember to be gentle with your skin! It is also a good idea to consult a trained cosmetologist if you are not sure what concentrations to use.

4.  Antioxidants – in your food and on your skin, these are key to feeling and looking youthful!

5. Hydration - The importance of drinking enough water cannot be overemphasized. What happens when you’re dehydrated? Your skin will get dry and begin to sag; and you’ll begin to lose muscle tone. If you find yourself thirsty, then you’re already behind schedule on keeping yourself hydrated, so carry water with you and drink it often!

 


Environment and Skin Care

Author: Dr. Larita
April 10, 2014

There are pluses and minuses to living in every environment. For some people, the pluses of desert living far outweigh the minuses. Sunshine can do wonders for one’s mood and the native plants do not wreak havoc on an overactive allergy-prone immune system each spring.

One minus is the effect the sunshine and the dry weather can have on the skin. To combat the negative effects of too much sun, always wear a hat and plenty of sunscreen when going outside. Also apply skin moisturizer liberally in the morning and before bed each night.


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