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July 24, 2023
There are many ways to study essential oils. Essential oils are a part of organic chemistry, so most programs that provide certification associated with a registered institution teach by functional chemical groups. This can be very useful and if you are going to help others use oils effectively, knowledge of chemical components is necessary for efficacy and safety reasons.
As groups of essential oils can have similar effects on our body systems, it is very useful to study them in groups. We can learn a lot about a collection of oils by the plant part from which they are extracted. Citrus is one of those collections.
Whether you are experiencing the more carefree, joyful days of summer, or if colder days are afoot, citrus essential oils provide a welcome aroma with some very positive effects that make these oils a favourite of many people, and with good reason. Let’s look at oils that come from citrus fruit and explore why these oils are so popular.
In the world of aromatherapy, the citrus family of essential oils holds a special place. Comprising oils such as bergamot, lemon, lime, sweet orange, bitter orange, tangerine, mandarin, grapefruit, and yuzu, these aromatic delights have captured the hearts of many.
Citrus oils are unique in their extraction process, being cold-pressed from the rind rather than steam-distilled like many other essential oils. Belonging to the Rutaceae family, these oils can be characterized as either sweet or zesty, evoking a wide range of emotions and sensations when experienced.
Without human intervention, citrus fruits, the ripened flowers of these remarkable plants, have an intriguing life cycle closely tied to the animal kingdom. By being (in many cases) green in colour and bitter tasting through maturation, the fruits protect their seeds within as they are not desirable for animals to eat. Once fully ripe, animals consume the fruits, and the seeds pass through their digestive systems, aiding in seed dispersal. This circular process allows new seeds to take root elsewhere while providing nourishment to the animals.
The allure of citrus fruits extends beyond their delightful taste and aroma; they hold symbolic significance in various cultures:
The connection between scent and emotions is well-documented. Bright colors and round shapes, reminiscent of citrus fruits, have been shown to uplift spirits and bring joy. Citrus essential oils, with their vibrant and refreshing aromas, tap into this psychological phenomenon, promoting feelings of happiness, energy, and enthusiasm.
Fruit is life-giving, providing nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and polyphenols. Regular consumption of fruit in moderation can lower the risk of some health concerns
Citrus essential oils contain antimicrobial properties. They are antidepressant, antioxidant, antispasmodic, carminative, digestive, detoxifying, diuretic, stomachic. Note that as is typical of top notes, they oxidize quickly. Let’s dive into a few specific oils.
Each citrus essential oil boasts its own unique qualities and therapeutic properties. Let's explore some of the most popular ones:
Utilizing citrus essential oils in your daily life can be both enjoyable and beneficial. Here are some practical applications to consider:
For children over the age of 7, sweet orange, mandarin, and tangerine oils can be soothing for upset tummies, restlessness, stress, and anxiety. Some professional aromatherapists have found calming results using single note essential oil inhalers or in a diffuser for kids with ADHD and autism. Essential oils are potent. If you are interested in exploring this option please work with a professional aromatherapist to help you prevent harm, stay within safety guidelines and to help choose the right oils for your situation. Make sure that you know dilution rates for the safest application possible.
While some sources may recommend lemon (or other) essential oil in your morning water, it’s much safer and more effective - not to mention cheaper - to use a real lemon to avoid potential harm. There are no vitamins in essential oils that have been found so far. If you are interested in morning lemon water and a digestive system detox, it’s very effective to just use a slice of lemon. You will appreciate the ritual and further connection with nature that occurs from using the fruit. Besides, the lemon has more culinary uses as you can continue to make dressings, sauces and add a bit of needed acidity to a dish that needs that added flare.
Remember that citrus essential oils are phototoxic. Do not use them on the skin in summer time before UV ray exposure, sun and tanning bed exposure. For more information on essential oil phototoxicity check out this article.
Citrus fruits are sprayed with pesticides, and, as so many of the citrus oils are cold pressed, trace amounts might be present in your essential oil. Whenever possible I recommend that when buying citrus essential oils you buy organic.
Citrus essential oils hold a special place in the world of aromatherapy, offering uplifting aromas and a plethora of therapeutic benefits. Whether you seek emotional balance, physical well-being, or simply a joyous and refreshing atmosphere, these oils from the citrus family have much to offer. Embrace the abundant gifts of nature and let the vibrant scents of citrus oils invigorate your senses, promoting a harmonious and joyful lifestyle.
The information on our website is not intended to cure, diagnose or treat medical conditions, nor is it a substitute for medical advice. Please consult with a physician before beginning this or any other new health care program. The information contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be substituted for the advice provided by your doctor or other health care professional. If you rely upon any programs or techniques, or use any of the products and services made available by or through the use of our website for decision making, without obtaining the advice of a physician or other health care professional, you do so at your own risk. The views expressed on Standing Stone Wellness have not been evaluated or endorsed by any private or public entity. The information on our website is not legal advice. Please consult with a licensed legal professional for adherence to legal guidelines.
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