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What on earth is Aromatherapy,
besides yet another gimmick for
selling us interesting smells?
(c) Atham-Z 2000-2003

Well, it seems there is more to it than that. Researchers in Japan have found that fragrances from many natural oils can actually change your brain waves to make you feel more alert and focused in some cases and more serene and relaxed in others. The olfactory nerve - found in the upper regions of the nasal cavity - provides the most direct route to your limbic system, the brain's emotional mainframe and the warehouse of stored memories. When you inhale a fragrance from a natural oil, particles from the substance are absorbed directly through the linings of the nose and the lungs into your bloodstream. Although a host of substances may be pleasing to your nose, only natural substances actually alter brain waves.

Once you have acquired an essential oil, the simplest way to activate it is as follows: Add a few drops of your selected oil to a bowl of hot water. The vapours will release the fragrance into the air.

NOTE: Pregnant ladies should consult their doctors first, and any other use of the oil (than what is described here) should be discussed in detail with your supplier.

Here follows a brief list of readily available oils, and what they are supposed to enhance when you smell them:

Basil - for a refreshing lift or as an insect repellent

Black Pepper - stimulating an increase in energy

Cedar Wood - clearing the mind

Citrus - creating cheery uplifting atmospheres, eases anxiety and raises spirits

Eucalyptus - clears congestion, an antiviral expectorant

Floral Oils - stress relief and relaxation, soothing the body physically and mentally

Lavender - improves mood and relieves stress and insomnia

Patchouli - calms and focuses the mind, can act as an aphrodisiac

Peppermint - relief from colds, flue or sinus congestion, mental stimulant

Rosemary - soothes and relieves anxiety

Spearmint - energizes the mind

Have fun experimenting with some of these. All things that can contribute to good health and peace of mind are welcome from my perspective.

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This page was created February 8, 2003.