I will start with one sentence that I particularly liked when I read it, and it was stated by Robert Tisserand, one of the world experts in aromatherapy:
“Aromatherapy is a caring, practical therapy that aims to promote relaxation, increase energy, reduce the effects of stress and restore the lost balance of mind, body and soul.”
He described the very essence of aromatherapy in one sentence. According to the official definition, aromatherapy represents the controlled use of essential oils for the purpose of improving and/or improving the physical, emotional, spiritual and mental health of people. It is a complementary method based on the use of natural plant extracts, i.e. essential oils and other natural ingredients (such as cold-pressed plant oils) of the best quality. They are taken into the body or applied to the skin for a holistic approach to health, to support the body, mind and spirit. When I say a holistic approach to health, I mean a philosophy that takes into account the whole, not just individual parts, because the human body is not a mechanism composed of parts that act separately, but a whole that functions according to the principle of mutual and harmonious coexistence.
Since the beginning of time, aromatic plants have been used in various ways. They were used by the Romans, Egyptians and Persians to meet a wide range of daily needs, especially those related to promoting a healthy skin appearance, maintaining a strong immune system, for perfumery, and they were also an indispensable part of numerous religious rituals. Throughout history, their application found its place in our areas and enriched our lives.
Essential oils or as I often like to call them essences are lean plant extracts obtained from different parts of plants (petals, bark, leaves, seeds, roots) through a careful process of steam distillation, cold pressing, extraction or some other method of isolation. These are volatile natural substances with an extremely complex chemical structure. All the components that make up an essential oil act synergistically (enhance their effects) and each chemical component contributes to the overall therapeutic effect of the essential oil. All these chemical components interact with the cells in our body and thus enable the oils to achieve their therapeutic effect.
They work in different ways: antiseptic, antiviral, stimulating/energizing, antimicrobial, mild expectorants (for coughing)/decongestants (thins mucous secretions and moistens the nasal mucosa and cleans the nasal cavity), anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic (eliminates abdominal pain), soothing, regenerative for the skin…
Each of these actions would not be possible without binding to receptors in our body. Receptors are protein molecules that have special grooves on them that, in contact with certain molecules, trigger a series of reactions in our body. Without receptors, applying e.g. peppermint on the skin, you would not feel “cooling”.
The chemical composition may differ from plant to plant from which it was extracted due to the method of extraction, the environment in which the plant grows, the altitude at which the plant was grown, the geographical location, the time and method of harvesting the plant, etc. All environmental factors affect the final product or on the quality of the essential oil.
Simply put, essential oils are a gift of nature and are there for you to enjoy, to support your body, to calm your busy environment and lift your spirit.