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Essential oils can help heal the body, mind, and spirit |

Health And Family

Essential oils can help heal the body, mind, and spirit

SAVOIR FAIRE - Mayenne Carmona - The Philippine Star

A maternal grand aunt lived with us during my early childhood and she believed in a lot of natural cures, which in today’s language is termed holistic.  As children, my siblings and I found her ways a bit weird but did not dare question her out of respect.  She soaked her hair in coconut oil or coconut milk hours before every shampoo, she boiled guava leaves and used the concoction as a compress on anything swollen, she used baking soda to brush her teeth, she put a few drops of hydrogen peroxide in water and gargled with it — just to mention some of her many rituals.  As a result, I must admit that she had long silky hair, whiter teeth than most adults, and she had fresh breath.   My baby sister had chronic stomach spasms. Instead of calling a doctor, Grand Aunt would put a hot compress with a mixture of anise, eucalyptus or peppermint oil on my sister’s abdomen and, with gentle strokes, massaged her lower back until the spasms disappeared.  She would treat a urinary tract infection with a bath soak that had some kind of oil in it and true enough, the soak would act as a diuretic which promoted urine flow.  A cold was treated with a chest rub of eucalyptus oil or camphor oil, followed by inhalation of Vicks Vaporub melted in boiling water. Everything she did just worked for us, without antibiotics and costly medications.

In retrospect, I now realize the wisdom of her natural cures, which at that time, we young kids found bizarre. 

During the launch of the newly opened Crown Spa at Crown Towers, one of the three hotels in the City of Dreams Manila, the therapist talked about the many benefits of essential oils, which they use for their facials and massage.  It brought to mind the healing benefits of my grand aunt’s simple oils, one of which was White Flower, which she bought in Chinatown.  She rubbed one drop of White Flower on my temples when I had a headache and, in no time at all, my headache would disappear.  White Flower is also effective for neck pains, muscle and joint pains, backaches, arthritis, sprains, bruises — it seems almost like a cure-all.  It has the following ingredients: wintergreen, eucalyptus, peppermint, menthol, camphor, and lavender.  

Debra Mauldin, a certified aromatherapist, writes that plant remedies and essential oils have a long tradition of providing therapeutic benefits and most have been confirmed by modern scientific research.  They are readily absorbed through the skin and the olfactory system, which benefits the psyche.

Physiologically, essential oils influence the functions of organs and tissues, and help regulate the endocrine system. Mauldin claims that aromatherapy works by influencing the body, mind, and spirit, and can actually benefit babies, children, men, women, and the elderly.  

Essential oils are typically inhaled or applied to the skin.

Here are some essential oils and their benefits:

• To help you relax, put two to five drops of chamomile oil in your handkerchief, hold it under your nose, and inhale deeply.  A few drops of chamomile, rose, and sandalwood in an aromatherapy oil lamp can help relax patients in a doctor’s office. 

Lavender oil is considered the Supreme Skin Oil as it has multiple uses.  It is used in body massage to help relax the muscles.  It also cleanses, deodorizes, tones, balances, replenishes dry skin.  It is used for insomnia, stress, bug bites, burns.

Lemon, peppermint, and basil can be used in energizing and uplifting one’s mood.  They can be used as perk-up oils to combat sleepiness.

Coriander oil is good for muscular pain, cartilage damage, digestive problems, and for softening blackheads.

Eucalyptus oil is used for inhalation or chest rub for cough, asthma, colds, circulation problems.

Frankincense is for autoimmune disorders, brain function.

Geranium oil is good for bruises, jet lag, agitation.

Ginger is good for digestive issues, low libido, vertigo.

Jasmine oil supports hormonal and emotional balance.

Myrrh is anti-cancer and used as balm on wounds.

Patchouli is used as insect repellant, for insect bites and skin issues.

Rosemary is for respiratory issues, alcoholism, and for healthy hair.

Rose, aside from being a relaxant, is also an aphrodisiac, and is used to treat poison ivy rashes and scars.

Thyme is an effective anti-infection oil, and also used for eczema and parasites.

Tea tree oil fights infection, lice, viruses, ringworms.

Spearmint supports digestive and emotional health, is anti-spasmodic and a stimulant

Oregano oil is a flu fighter because of its anti-bacterial properties. 

Cedar wood is used to improve skin issues such as acne, psoriasis, and helps alleviate congestion,

Grapefruit is for weight loss, sugar cravings, hangovers.

Lemongrass is for healing UTI, mental fatigue, flea bites, and is anti-cancer.

Dill is for lowering cholesterol and treating constipation, colic, gas.

Fennel is for blood clots, digestive issues, lactation.

Wintergreen is for bone spurs, joint issues, and to treat/prevent dandruff.

These are just some essential oils that are commonly used. Plants and herbs are good sources of essential oils which have physical, mental, and emotional healing properties.  Their benefits go well beyond their good smell or taste.  My grand aunt’s natural curative measures are validated in these modern times.  I am sure she is smiling contentedly in her happy place.

Source of info on essential oils: Www.

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Crown Towers, the third hotel to open at City of Dreams Manila, recently added another jewel to its crown: the Crown Spa which features opulently-designed therapy rooms and spa suites that highlight artworks by renowned Filipino and international artists. “The Crown Spa lets guests create and customize their own journey to optimum relaxation and wellness through a comprehensive selection of treatments and packages,” says Crown Towers general manager Brett Hickey. “We ensure that every need is met, if not exceeded. Our team of professional and highly experienced therapists pays utmost care and attention to the service they provide so that guests will feel completely refreshed, rejuvenated, and revitalized.”

For aromatherapy facials and massage, call Crown Towers Spa at 800-8880 local 2701.



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