Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Give your Medicine Cabinet a Makeover!

Before                                                     After

Replace potentially harmful items in your medicine cabinet to something powerful and natural, essential oils! Since getting into essential oils a year and a half ago, I have slowly phased out over-the-counter medicines. I no longer have ibuprofen, advil, cough and cold medicines, or allergy medicine. I also make my own toothpaste, mouth spray, and use the oils for wound care. 

As I learned more about essential oils and had more experiences using them, I realized that I no longer needed to use those over-the-counter medicines. I also like knowing that what I am using is natural and do not contain any potentially harmful chemicals. Do you ever read the label of ingredients of products you use? I don't even know what half the ingredients are in most of the things I used to buy.

Here are some of the oils I use most often in my home:

Lavender – all things calming                                                            Lavender has been cherished for its unmistakable aroma and its therapeutic properties for thousands of years. Lavender is widely used and acknowledged for its calming and relaxing qualities.
  • Diffuse in a room or apply topically to calm  anxiety and soothe emotions
  • Apply topically to soothe irritated skin and lips
  • Massage on back or bottom of feet, apply a drop to pillow at   bedtime
  • Apply immediately to help calm reaction to a bee sting or bug bite

Lemon – clean & freshen

This essential oil powerhouse is cold-pressed from lemon rinds to preserve its delicate nature and potent properties. Lemon is known as a powerful aromatic, topical, and internal cleanser that can be used to complement many other oils. Diffusing lemon in a room can cleanse the air and uplift mood. It can also be used on surfaces throughout the home as a non-toxic cleaning booster.

  • Add a drop to honey to soothe a dry or sore throat
  • Diffuse in a room to neutralize odors and elevate mood
  • Use to clean kitchen counters and stainless steel appliances
  • Take internally with water as an antioxidant and detoxifier
  • Dissolves gum and sap

Peppermint – cool & invigorating

Peppermint is popular in countless forms—from toothpaste to chewing gum. As an essential oil, it is useful to ease breathing and as a digestive aid.

  • Use with Lemon in water for a healthy, refreshing mouth rinse
  • Inhale deeply to invigorate lungs and increase alertness
  • Add to water in a spray bottle and mist body when overheated
  • Apply to neck and forehead with Lavender to calm headaches

Frankincense – exclusive oil from Oman

Perhaps the most precious of the ancient oils, frankincense is highly sought after by modern consumers for its many uses, including relaxation, immune support, and mood enhancement.

  • Use to clean and dress minor cuts and sores
  • Use with a carrier oil for beautiful, radiant skin
  • Apply to bottom of the feet or use internally to support immune function
  • Use with Lavender and Peppermint to reduce stress and headaches
  • When in doubt, use Frankincense!

Melaleuca – first aid for the skin

Recognized by its more common name, ‘tea tree’, melaleuca has been revered for its cleansing and regenerative properties, especially for the skin. Composed of more than ninety different compounds, it has limitless therapeutic applications.

  • Apply to skin blemishes and rashes as part of a daily cleansing program
  • Use with shampoo or conditioner for healthy scalp and hair
  • Apply to feet and toenails after showering, swimming, or working out

Oregano – natural immune support

Hippocrates, the father of medicine, used oregano as a cleansing agent as well as for digestive and respiratory support. High in antioxidant activity, oregano contains phenolic acids and flavanoids.

  • Take several drops in gelatin capsule for periodic immune support
  • Dilute and apply to bottom of feet of kids and adults as a natural defense
  • Use internally as part of a monthly cleansing regimen for GI health
Deep Blue – muscle & joint support

According to recent studies, more than half of us are sufferers of ongoing discomfort. Deep Blue is dōTERRA’s soothing solution to this challenge. Wintergreen, camphor, peppermint, blue tansy, German chamomile, helichrysum and osmanthus work together to ease achy joints and sore muscles. Its effects are deep and penetrating with sustained results. Once gently rubbed into the area of discomfort, the benefit will be felt almost immediately.

  • Apply directly to tired, aching joints
  • Rub on muscles before and after exercise to reduce discomfort
  • Use with a carrier oil for a therapeutic deep-tissue massage

Breathe – respiratory support

Respiratory issues are prevalent in modern society. dōTERRA essential oils are a perfect way to ease breathing consistently for a sustained benefit. Breathe is a remarkable blend of CPTG® essential oils which combine to do just that—help you breathe easier. A proprietary blend including laurel leaf, peppermint, eucalyptus, melaleuca, lemon, and ravensara cleanses and soothes the airways, and can easily be applied topically to the chest, back, or bottom of feet. Its pleasant aroma is calming to the senses and perfect for nighttime diffusion allowing for restful sleep.

  • Apply topically to chest and neck to help clear lungs and sinuses
  • Diffuse or add to humidifier at bedtime for more restful sleep
  • Apply to chest or bottom of feet for seasonal respiratory discomfort

DigestZen – digestive support

Many essential oils have been recognized through research as powerful agents to help restore normal balance in the digestive system. Digestzen takes advantage of these well-established therapeutic compounds in a proprietary blend of pure essential oils. Ginger, peppermint, tarragon, fennel, caraway, coriander, and anise each have specific attributes which add to the overall efficacy of this potent blend. When used internally, dōTERRA’s Digestzen brings soothing digestive relief.

  • Rub on stomach to ease digestive discomfort, nausea, or motion sickness
  • Take internally at meal times to support healthy, comfortable digestion
  • Apply to bottom of feet of children to help ease digestive issues

On Guard – natural defense

On Guard is dōTERRA’s unique, proprietary blend formulated to support healthy immune function.* Wild orange essential oil, combined with clove, cinnamon, eucalyptus, and rosemary offer a fragrant, natural and effective alternative to synthetic options for immune support. On Guard, with its unique aroma, is one of our most versatile blends. It is also safe to use on counter tops, as a non-toxic way to cleanse surfaces, or to clear the atmosphere by diffusing. On Guard is superb for eliminating and controlling pathogens due to the potency of its constituents.

  • Diffuse in a room to eliminate airborne pathogens
  • Dilute and gargle morning and night as a protective mouth rinse
  • Take several drops in gelatin capsule for added immune support
  • Dilute in spray bottle to clean handles, phones, & other community surfaces

To purchase these oils, go to: mydoterra.com/samtaggart 
The 'family physician kit' contains all 10 of these oils at a discounted price.

Your Voice Commands your Mind, Body, & Spirit

What you think and say, creates your reality.

Meditate and Pray.

Think positively.

Speak positive words. 

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender essential oil is one of my favorite oils and smells wonderful. I use this oil the most on myself and my family. Lavender (lavandula augustifolia), is known as the swiss army knife of essential oils because of it's versatility. It is known for being an analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antifungal, antiviral, antibacterial, a diuretic, and has sedative properties. Some of it's primary benefits are it can balance and normalize body functions, promote tissue regeneration, speed up wound healing, can sooth and relax the mind and body, can ease body aches and pains, and can clean cuts, bruises and skin irritations. 

Several years ago lavender was mentioned at (chron.com), in a reference to a study reporting just five minutes of exposure to a mild lavender scent helped curb the release of cortisol, a stress hormone that can trigger inflammation and lead to premature aging. Other studies are reported to demonstrate lavender's support in fighting insomnia and working as a calming agent. Lavender also has antiseptic properties and can be used to calm headaches when rubbed onto the temples.

I have had so many positive experiences with lavender. Anytime my kids fall down and get hurt, I put lavender oil on their scratches or wounds. It stops the bleeding and speeds up healing. A year ago my 3 year old son was jumped on by some small dogs which left scratches and a small bruise. I applied lavender oil diluted with coconut oil to his wounds. The next day the scratches were mostly gone and the bruise looked like it had been healing for several days. I was amazed. 

I also had another experience last year where my youngest son pushed his older sister off the stage at church and cut her chin open. I should say it filleted open, it was awful looking! A friend and I glued it together with liquid skin, but I was really concerned about the wound re-opening and if it would leave a huge scar. I put a drop of lavender oil on her wound twice a day and about 5 days later when we removed the bandage, it had healed completely. A year later you would never know what happened, there is only a small indentation below her chin where it was cut.

Lavender can also help with allergies. Anytime I get hay fever or itchy eyes, I rub a drop of diluted lavender oil on my cheeks and within minutes my eyes feel better. You can also put a drop under your tongue. (I would only recommend using doTERRA oils internally.)

Last year during a family reunion my neice came home with a bad sunburn after a day of fishing. I had her rub lavender oil diluted with coconut oil over the red areas and the next day she was surprised at how the redness had faded, it wasn't peeling, and didn't hurt. The next day her sister wished she would have used it.

Here are some of the many ways you can use lavender essential oil:
  1. Soothe minor burns by applying 2–3 drops to the affected area.
  2. Apply a drop to minor wounds to stop bleeding, disinfect, and speed healing.
  3. Rub one or two drops on your palms and spread on your pillow for a restful night of sleep.
  4. Inhale to soothe and relax the body and mind.
  5. Place a few drops on a wet cloth or dryer sheet to deodorize and freshen your laundry.
  6. May be able to minimize the appearance of scar tissue by massaging the oil on or around affected areas.
  7. Add a few drops to a cotton ball and place it in closets and drawers to scent linens and repel moths and insects.
  8. Rub oil on dry or chapped skin to moisturize the affected area.
  9. Put a drop of Lavender oil on a bee sting or insect bite to stop itching and reduce swelling.
  10. Rub Lavender oil on the feet for a calming effect on the body.
  11. Mix several drops of Lavender oil with olive or coconut oil and use topically on eczema and dermatitis.
  12. To stop a nosebleed, put a drop of Lavender oil on a tissue and wrap it around a small chip of ice. Push the tissue covered ice chip up under the middle of the top lip to the base of the nose and hold as long as comfortable or until the bleeding stops.
  13. To alleviate the symptoms of motion sickness, place a drop of Lavender oil on the end of the tongue, around the navel or behind the ears.
  14. To reduce or minimize the formation of scar tissue, massage Lavender oil on and around the affected area.
  15. Rub 1-2 drops of Lavender oil over the armpit area to act as a deodorant
  16. Rub several drops of Lavender oil into the scalp to help eliminate dandruff.
  17. Apply 2-3 drops of Lavender oil to a rash to stop the itching and heal the skin.

 To buy lavender essential oil, go to mydoterra.com/samtaggart

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Essential Oil Safety and Basic Tips

Essential oils are wonderful and amazing products of our natural world and have been used throughout the centuries for their smell and medicinal properties. dōTERRA's essential oils can be used safely by your family for a variety of wellness applications. There are a number of essential oils that have chemical components that while completely natural, must be used with caution. It is important to remember that therapeutic-grade essential oils are highly-concentrated plant extracts and should be used with reasonable care.

Here are some safety guidelines that you should follow when using essential oils and essential oil products.
  1. Be sure to use only 100% pure therapeutic-grade essential oils and follow all label warnings and instructions.
  2. If redness or irritation occurs when using essential oils topically, apply a vegetable oil such as fractionated coconut oil or olive oil to the affected area.
  3. Essential oils should not be used in the eyes, inside the ear canal, or in open wounds. In the event of accidental contact with the eye, dilute with vegetable oil NOT water. (A few months ago I was having difficulty opening an essential oil bottle and accidentally jerked the bottle and oil splashed in my eye! I immediately grabbed some olive oil, poured it in my hand and applied it to my eye and rubbed until the stinging stopped. About a minute later I was able to stop the stinging and flushed my eye with warm water.)
  4. Do NOT consume an essential oil internally UNLESS labeled with a Supplement Facts box with specific dietary supplement use instructions and warnings.
  5. Discontinue the use of an essential oil if you experience severe skin, stomach, or respiratory irritation or discomfort.
  6. When using on children, apply a very small amount of oil to test skin or other sensitivity. Do not use oil on a child's hand as they may transfer to their eyes or mouth.
  7. Consult your physician before using essential oils if you are pregnant or under a doctor's care or have other safety questions regarding essential oils.
  8. If you are on medication you should also consult with your practitioner because some essential oils may interact with certain medications. For example, relaxing essential oils such as chamomile, lavender, and melissa (lemon balm) may heighten the effect of sleeping pills or sedatives
Basic Tips
  1. Store essential oils in a cool, dry place, away from sunlight or a direct heat source. 
  2. Make sure the lids are tight and fitting.
  3. Do not touch the tip of the bottle where dropper is, this prevents contamination.
  4. After applying an oil, wash your hands or make sure the oil has been completely absorbed by your skin before touching surfaces. Pure essential oils will eat through plastic! On furniture, oils will remove the finish because of their terpenic nature, so remove quickly with tissue. If any falls on plastic, finished wood or painted surfaces, unfortunately it won’t take long to ruin the surface. For example don't use your touchscreen phone right after applying oil otherwise it will ruin the surface. (I have forgotten to remember this basic tip and right after using an oil have grabbed my water bottle to drink and now the plastic bottle has fingerprints all over it.)

Food Poisoning

Last week I had food poisoning...not fun! When I went to bed that night my stomach was a little upset, but when I woke up a while later I was in pain! It felt like my stomach was churning and in knots, and I knew it wouldn't be long before I started throwing up. Unfortunately I have had food poisoning several times so I knew what was happening.

I rolled out of bed and grabbed a bottle of peppermint essential oil and rubbed it on my stomach. I then remembered that I just got a bottle of DigestZen a few weeks ago when I joined doTERRA. DigestZen is an essential oil blend that contains ginger, peppermint, tarragon, fennel, caraway, coriander, and anise. I rubbed DigestZen on my stomach and then put a drop on my tongue and drank some water and laid down. Within minutes I felt my stomach start to calm and was able to fall back asleep. I woke up a few hours later with with no pain. In the morning I woke up feeling well and ingested another drop of DigestZen with some water for added benefit. I was so happy it helped me feel better. Considering how many times I have had food poisoning, it was like a miracle to me that my stomach felt better so quickly!

Essential oils are highly anti-bacterial and are very effective against all bacterial strains. Here are some oils and blends that help with food poisoning:

DigestZen blend (ginger, peppermint, tarragon, fennel, caraway, coriander, and anise)
Rosemary cineol

A few drops can be applied to feet, stomach area, in a vegetable capsule, or in a glass of water or juice.

To buy DigestZen, go to www.mydoterra.com/samtaggart