I personally believe in using natural and complex fragrances from plants rather than synthetic versions. Aromatherapy takes this a step further and is the use of essential oils to promote wellness and health.
The natural oils are extracted from flowers, bark, stems, leaves, or roots of a plant to enhance psychological and physical well-being. The inhaled aroma from essential oils is widely believed to stimulate a part of the brain called the limbic system which is linked to the autonomic nervous system, mood states and stress levels.
Can we prove that aromatherapy works?
Recent published scientific research studies seek to quantify medical or mood benefits of essential oils. There is now strong evidence for particular essential oils. Lavender, in double blind studies, has shown to increase the length and quality of sleep, and rosemary and mint enhance alertness for example. Melissa was found to reduce anger and agitation and bergamot to reduce anxiety. Ylang Ylang essential oil was found to be both relaxing and balancing;
"...results show decreased autonomic nervous system arousal. Besides that, the similar study evaluated the effect of inhalation of ylang-ylang on the behavioural level of subjects in the aspect of alertness and attentiveness. The study demonstrated that the subjects felt more attentive and more alert after inhaling the oil, suggesting that the effect of inhalation of ylang-ylang oil is characterized as harmonization which resulted in uncoupling of physiological and behavioural arousal process..
Traditional Uses, Phytochemistry, and Bioactivities of Cananga odorata (Ylang-Ylang) Tan, Lee, Yin, Kei Chan, Habsah Abdul Kadir, Kok Gan Chan,Bey Hing Goh Pub Med July 2015
If you are interested in finding out the latest research on essential oils, further studies can be found on PUB Med and google scholar.
Note: The information provided is for personal information and interest only. It is not intended to offer professional medical advice or treatment for any condition. We recommend that you consult your GP or nurse if you have any health concerns.