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Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Essential Oil's Anti-Viral Effects

Interest is growing regarding the immune-supportive effects of essential oils, and particularly their antiviral actions. The world's leading aroma-medicine practitioners consider protection from infectious diseases one of aromatherapy's most effective applications.

Many essential oils have demonstrated anti-viral effects, through multiple pathways: By preventing virus replication, through improving the efficiency of our white blood cells, and by changing electrical potential of our cell walls. Many folks have turned to Oregano essential oil as a disinfectant. While this is a potent, broad-spectrum antimicrobial, there may be better choices that are both more gentle and more precise.

Monoterpine alcohols are noted to be the most beneficial and safest of all essential oil components, with strong antiviral effects. Thyme c.t. linalool is our favorite with this naturally constituent for immune support. Hyssop is an important oil due the great diversity in its molecular makeup. Battaglia notes in The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy that Hyssop decumbens is "reputed to have potent antiviral effects" with particular affinity for the respiratory system and diffuser use.

Other highly-regarded oils used for influenza and other viruses that may compromise the respiratory system are Ravensara, Eucalyptus Radiata and Rosemary c.t. Verbenone. These oils can be diffused for gentle exposure to their immune-supportive effects; they can also be applied regularly to lymph nodes. Niaouli is considered a potent immune system stimulant when used in this way.

After a warm shower when the pores are open is an excellent time to do this. Be especially careful for sensitive skin areas ~ diluting your essential oils in a carrier will help them absorb and make the essential oils even easier on your skin.

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