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Articles » dr. amanda conn

  • Topical Application of Essential Oils by Amanda Conn Topical Application of Essential Oils by Amanda Conn

    Posted on by Quantam Health Products

    Topical application is one of the ways you can experience the benefits of essential oils. This form of application is unique because it allows for localized effects in the area of the application in addition to providing whole body support. Additionally, you can use essential oils topically when you want an easy way to target specific areas on your body.

    Dilution Basics

    Dilution is a process in which essential oils are mixed with a carrier oil—a pure vegetable oil that helps “carry” the essential oil onto the skin. There are many benefits to dilution, including increasing the surface area of absorption, enhancing absorption through dry skin, and preventing sensitivity responses. 

    Classifications of Essential Oils for Topical Use

    Neat: Oils categorized as “neat” can be applied topically without dilution because of their exceptionally mild chemistry. Frankincense, Lavender, Melaleuca, Melissa, and Sandalwood are good examples of “neat” essential oils.

    Dilute: Oils in this category have potent chemistry and should be diluted with a carrier oil before topical application in every case. “Dilute” oils include Cassia, Cinnamon, Clove, Oregano, and Thyme.

    Sensitive: “Sensitive” oils are those that should be diluted before use on young or sensitive skin. Bergamot, Black Pepper, Eucalyptus, Ginger, and Peppermint are examples of “sensitive” oils. 

    Application Safety

    Although unusual, occasionally it is possible to have a sensitivity response to an essential oil. This occurs when there is heightened reactivity of an essential oil that may result in an unwanted response in the body or on the skin. Awareness of your body and how it reacts to different essential oils, amounts applied, and location applications can help minimize risk and ensure safe usage. 

    Essential Safety Tips:

    Citrus oils contain a unique category of photosensitive compounds called furocoumarins, so it is important to avoid exposure to sunlight, sunlamps, or other sources of UV light for up to 12 hours after topical application of these oils.

    More is not always better! Essential oils are very potent, so a little goes a long way. Start with 1–2 drops and then increase the dosage as necessary.

    Dilute, dilute, dilute! Dilution in no way diminishes the efficacy of essential oils and offers many benefits that can enhance your application experience. Conduct a simple sensitivity test when trying a new oil by applying a small amount of essential oil to an inconspicuous area. Check the spot each hour for several hours to ensure no sensitivity has occurred.


    Where do I apply my essential oils?

    Face: Use essential oil as part of your regular skin care regimen to beautify the skin and promote a clear, healthy looking complexion.

    Neck/Forehead/Temples: These areas are good to target feelings of tension. 

    Abdomen: 
    Application of essential oils, especially over major digestive organs.

    Arms/Legs/Back: Massage onto the arms, wrists, legs, feet, or back after physical activity. 

    Roof of the Mouth (Soft Palette)/Base of the Skull: Applying oils to these areas is an excellent way to help transform your mood and balance your emotions.

    Chest: Rubbing oils onto the chest promotes feelings of clear breathing.

    Bottoms of Feet: The feet have large pores that rapidly absorb essential oils, making this an ideal application site for generalized effect. Apply and massage in 2–4 drops of essential oil.

    Other Effective Methods of Topical Application: 

    • Add a few drops of oil to a warm bath
    • Make a hot or cold compress by soaking a towel or cloth in water, adding essential oils, and then applying to the desired area- Add oil to a lotion or moisturizer and then apply to the skin
    • Mix with water and use as a mouth and throat rinse

    Topical application is one of the ways you can experience the benefits of essential oils. This form of application is unique because it allows for localized effects in the area of the application in addition to providing whole body support. Additionally, you can use essential oils topically when you want an easy way to target specific areas on your body.

    Dilution Basics

    Dilution is a process in which essential oils are mixed with a carrier oil—a pure vegetable oil that helps “carry” the essential oil onto the skin. There are many benefits to dilution, including increasing the surface area of absorption, enhancing absorption through dry skin, and preventing sensitivity responses. 

    Classifications of Essential Oils for Topical Use

    Neat: Oils categorized as “neat” can be applied topically without dilution because of their exceptionally mild chemistry. Frankincense, Lavender, Melaleuca, Melissa, and Sandalwood are good examples of “neat” essential oils.

    Dilute: Oils in this category have potent chemistry and should be diluted with a carrier oil before topical application in every case. “Dilute” oils include Cassia, Cinnamon, Clove, Oregano, and Thyme.

    Sensitive: “Sensitive” oils are those that should be diluted before use on young or sensitive skin. Bergamot, Black Pepper, Eucalyptus, Ginger, and Peppermint are examples of “sensitive” oils. 

    Application Safety

    Although unusual, occasionally it is possible to have a sensitivity response to an essential oil. This occurs when there is heightened reactivity of an essential oil that may result in an unwanted response in the body or on the skin. Awareness of your body and how it reacts to different essential oils, amounts applied, and location applications can help minimize risk and ensure safe usage. 

    Essential Safety Tips:

    Citrus oils contain a unique category of photosensitive compounds called furocoumarins, so it is important to avoid exposure to sunlight, sunlamps, or other sources of UV light for up to 12 hours after topical application of these oils.

    More is not always better! Essential oils are very potent, so a little goes a long way. Start with 1–2 drops and then increase the dosage as necessary.

    Dilute, dilute, dilute! Dilution in no way diminishes the efficacy of essential oils and offers many benefits that can enhance your application experience. Conduct a simple sensitivity test when trying a new oil by applying a small amount of essential oil to an inconspicuous area. Check the spot each hour for several hours to ensure no sensitivity has occurred.


    Where do I apply my essential oils?

    Face: Use essential oil as part of your regular skin care regimen to beautify the skin and promote a clear, healthy looking complexion.

    Neck/Forehead/Temples: These areas are good to target feelings of tension. 

    Abdomen: 
    Application of essential oils, especially over major digestive organs.

    Arms/Legs/Back: Massage onto the arms, wrists, legs, feet, or back after physical activity. 

    Roof of the Mouth (Soft Palette)/Base of the Skull: Applying oils to these areas is an excellent way to help transform your mood and balance your emotions.

    Chest: Rubbing oils onto the chest promotes feelings of clear breathing.

    Bottoms of Feet: The feet have large pores that rapidly absorb essential oils, making this an ideal application site for generalized effect. Apply and massage in 2–4 drops of essential oil.

    Other Effective Methods of Topical Application: 

    • Add a few drops of oil to a warm bath
    • Make a hot or cold compress by soaking a towel or cloth in water, adding essential oils, and then applying to the desired area- Add oil to a lotion or moisturizer and then apply to the skin
    • Mix with water and use as a mouth and throat rinse

    Read more

  • The Effect of Essential Oils within Your Body by Amanda Conn The Effect of Essential Oils within Your Body by Amanda Conn

    Posted on by Quantam Health Products

    The scientific process is characterized by change and progression. Reflecting on standard health protocols that have been used throughout history, it is easy to understand the significance of continual evolution of thought. Just think, there was a time in history when it was common to use leeches and mercury as go-to health care practices. How times have changed! As scientific research continues to expand, we develop a better understanding of human health and wellness.

    There has been tremendous progress in understanding the biological interactions of essential oils (1). The oils have been subjected to widespread study in both clinical and experimental research environments, which has given us a greater understanding of their relevance to health than ever before.

    Essential oils are physiologically active, which means they directly influence the body. Unique structural features of essential oils allow them to be active both on the surface of cells and within cells.

    Every cell is enclosed in a protective barrier called a membrane that serves to maintain the cell as a closed system separate from the outside environment. Imbedded in the membrane are surface receptors that serve as a line of communication between that individual cell and the rest of the body. When the proper substance binds with these receptors, it initiates a cascade of chemical changes on the inner side of the cellular membrane, triggering modifications in the function of the cell. Interaction with these easily accessible receptors is one way that essential oils communicate with cells and impact cellular activity.

    The cellular membrane has a crucial double role of keeping out unwanted intruders while still being permeable (passable). Energy sources and other important substances must enter while waste must be removed. Most substances cannot penetrate the cellular membrane, so a number of specialized transport mechanisms (cofactors, transport vesicles, etc.) are employed to allow necessary substances to move into the cell in a controlled and well-regulated fashion. 

    Substances with certain structural properties can directly traverse the membrane and move into the cell without being limited by the cell’s transport machinery in a process known as passive diffusion. Oxygen, carbon dioxide, alcohol, some drugs, anesthetics, and essential oils are some of the few substances capable of moving in this way. Two features of essential oils enable them to be able to passively diffuse:

    1. Lipid solubility and
    2. Small molecular size.

    The cellular membrane is composed of lipids. Because essential oils are lipid soluble and small, they have no problem crossing the membrane.

    The lipid soluble nature of essential oils offers them independent function and cell accessibility. Essential oils have the ability to influence cells even when there is physiologic compromise such as during times of poor nutrition or environmental threats. If a cell becomes compromised for any reason, it depends on additional systems and functions within the body to regain optimal function. For example, a compromised cell may lose the ability to efficiently pass substances across its membrane and in turn, have difficulty getting what it needs to maintain itself. Often this becomes a cyclical problem—the cell can’t repair itself without the proper exchange of nutrients, but it can’t get the proper nutrients because membrane transport mechanisms are suboptimal. See the issue? Because essential oils do not depend on cellular transport mechanisms to enter the cell, they can easily cross the cell membrane and provide benefits directly to the cell.

    Essential oils can also influence the brain by passing from the blood into the brain. The blood brain barrier is the most secure tissue barrier in the body. It is highly selective in order to protect the fragile tissues of the central nervous system. This barrier only allows passage of certain compounds that are crucial to brain function (glucose, some amino acids, etc.). Novel research has demonstrated that certain sesquiterpene constituents found in essential oils can directly cross the blood brain barrier because of their small molecular size (2-4). Although sesquiterpenes were particularly studied, it is reasonable to assume that other essential oil compounds, especially monoterpenes, which are structurally smaller than sesquiterpenes, can also penetrate the blood brain barrier.

    The effects of essential oils are far-reaching regardless of their method of application. Such powerful biological influence would not be possible if essential oil compounds were not lipid soluble and did not have small molecular size. These unique structural properties give essential oils powerful biological influence throughout the body.

    Biography:

    1. Bakkali F, Averbeck S, Averbeck D, Idaomar M. Biological effects of essential oils - A review. Food Chem Toxicol.2008;46:446-475.
    2. Dwivedi GR, Gupta S, Roy S, et al. Tricyclic sesquiterpenes from Vetiveria zizanoides (L.) Nashas antimycobacterial agents. Chem Biol Drug Des. 2013;82(5):587-594.
    3. Wang K, Li Z, Chen Y, Su C. The Pharmacokinetics of a Novel Anti-tumor Agent, b -Elemene, in Sprague-Dawley Rats. Biopharm Drug Dispos. 2005;26:301-307
    4. Wu XS, Xie T, Lin J, et al. An investigation of the ability of elemene to pass through the blood-brain barrier and its effect on brain carcinomas.J Pharm Pharmacol. 2009;61:1653-1656

    The scientific process is characterized by change and progression. Reflecting on standard health protocols that have been used throughout history, it is easy to understand the significance of continual evolution of thought. Just think, there was a time in history when it was common to use leeches and mercury as go-to health care practices. How times have changed! As scientific research continues to expand, we develop a better understanding of human health and wellness.

    There has been tremendous progress in understanding the biological interactions of essential oils (1). The oils have been subjected to widespread study in both clinical and experimental research environments, which has given us a greater understanding of their relevance to health than ever before.

    Essential oils are physiologically active, which means they directly influence the body. Unique structural features of essential oils allow them to be active both on the surface of cells and within cells.

    Every cell is enclosed in a protective barrier called a membrane that serves to maintain the cell as a closed system separate from the outside environment. Imbedded in the membrane are surface receptors that serve as a line of communication between that individual cell and the rest of the body. When the proper substance binds with these receptors, it initiates a cascade of chemical changes on the inner side of the cellular membrane, triggering modifications in the function of the cell. Interaction with these easily accessible receptors is one way that essential oils communicate with cells and impact cellular activity.

    The cellular membrane has a crucial double role of keeping out unwanted intruders while still being permeable (passable). Energy sources and other important substances must enter while waste must be removed. Most substances cannot penetrate the cellular membrane, so a number of specialized transport mechanisms (cofactors, transport vesicles, etc.) are employed to allow necessary substances to move into the cell in a controlled and well-regulated fashion. 

    Substances with certain structural properties can directly traverse the membrane and move into the cell without being limited by the cell’s transport machinery in a process known as passive diffusion. Oxygen, carbon dioxide, alcohol, some drugs, anesthetics, and essential oils are some of the few substances capable of moving in this way. Two features of essential oils enable them to be able to passively diffuse:

    1. Lipid solubility and
    2. Small molecular size.

    The cellular membrane is composed of lipids. Because essential oils are lipid soluble and small, they have no problem crossing the membrane.

    The lipid soluble nature of essential oils offers them independent function and cell accessibility. Essential oils have the ability to influence cells even when there is physiologic compromise such as during times of poor nutrition or environmental threats. If a cell becomes compromised for any reason, it depends on additional systems and functions within the body to regain optimal function. For example, a compromised cell may lose the ability to efficiently pass substances across its membrane and in turn, have difficulty getting what it needs to maintain itself. Often this becomes a cyclical problem—the cell can’t repair itself without the proper exchange of nutrients, but it can’t get the proper nutrients because membrane transport mechanisms are suboptimal. See the issue? Because essential oils do not depend on cellular transport mechanisms to enter the cell, they can easily cross the cell membrane and provide benefits directly to the cell.

    Essential oils can also influence the brain by passing from the blood into the brain. The blood brain barrier is the most secure tissue barrier in the body. It is highly selective in order to protect the fragile tissues of the central nervous system. This barrier only allows passage of certain compounds that are crucial to brain function (glucose, some amino acids, etc.). Novel research has demonstrated that certain sesquiterpene constituents found in essential oils can directly cross the blood brain barrier because of their small molecular size (2-4). Although sesquiterpenes were particularly studied, it is reasonable to assume that other essential oil compounds, especially monoterpenes, which are structurally smaller than sesquiterpenes, can also penetrate the blood brain barrier.

    The effects of essential oils are far-reaching regardless of their method of application. Such powerful biological influence would not be possible if essential oil compounds were not lipid soluble and did not have small molecular size. These unique structural properties give essential oils powerful biological influence throughout the body.

    Biography:

    1. Bakkali F, Averbeck S, Averbeck D, Idaomar M. Biological effects of essential oils - A review. Food Chem Toxicol.2008;46:446-475.
    2. Dwivedi GR, Gupta S, Roy S, et al. Tricyclic sesquiterpenes from Vetiveria zizanoides (L.) Nashas antimycobacterial agents. Chem Biol Drug Des. 2013;82(5):587-594.
    3. Wang K, Li Z, Chen Y, Su C. The Pharmacokinetics of a Novel Anti-tumor Agent, b -Elemene, in Sprague-Dawley Rats. Biopharm Drug Dispos. 2005;26:301-307
    4. Wu XS, Xie T, Lin J, et al. An investigation of the ability of elemene to pass through the blood-brain barrier and its effect on brain carcinomas.J Pharm Pharmacol. 2009;61:1653-1656

    Read more