Archive for January, 2013

January 27, 2013

Myrrh Essential Oil

Myrrh is a small thorny species of trees that grows in dry stony soil. The gum is yellow to opaque and gets white streaks in it with age. It is best known for its wound healing properties.

Myrrh resin along with Frankincense tree resin was one of the gifts the three wise men brought to the Baby Jesus according to the Bible in Matthew 2:11. In Egypt it was commonly used in embalming practices.

The Greek physician, Claudios Galenos, known as Galen for short, used myrrh to heal the wounds of gladiators in ancient Greco-Rome.  Galen was the father of medicinal reductionism. All gladiators carried a pouch of myrrh paste into battle with them. Place bottle of essential oil myrrh into hot, warm water to liquefy before use because it is quite thick. Do not take myrrh essential oil internally. Never take resin essential oils internally.




Latin Name Commiphora myrrha
Family Burseraceae(Torchwood Family)
Country of Origin N. Africa, Middle East, N. India, Egypt
Volatility Base /middle note
Extraction solvent extracted from dried resin


Colour red, dark brown amber viscous liquid, like molasses


Aroma heavy, smoky, slightly bitter, drying,
Caution Contraindications Do not use during pregnancy. Do not consume resins or solvent extractions internally.
Primary Uses Place bottle of myrrh into hot, warm water to liquefy before use.


Skin: wounds, cuts, scrapes, eczema, dermatitis, stops bleeding, athlete’s foot, bedsores, boils,


Immune tonic


Meditation, healing work


Properties anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antimicrobial, antifungal, antibacterial, astringent, balsamic, carminative, disinfectant, diuretic, emmenagogue, cooling, expectorant, haemostatic, immune stimulant,  stomachic, tonic, vulnerary


Constituents Monoterpenes: pinene, dipentene, cadinene, limonene, caryophyllene,


Phenylpropanoids: eugenol


Aldehyde: Cinnamaldehyde

January 23, 2013

Marshmallow root

Marshmallow root is one of my favourites during cough and cold season. It is one of the best treatments for a dry, sore, irritated throat. The root has so much mucilage it makes it demulcent which soothes, coats and moisturizes a sore throat and inflamed tissues. Teas are the best way to treat a sore throat because it creates the most contact to heal inflamed and infected tissues. I add herbal tinctures to the tea for maximum effectiveness in healing coughs and colds. Marshmallow root is good for healing any ulcers and inflammation in the respiratory and digestive tract and has some immune boosting properties to help heal infections. To treat ulcers grind up the fresh root into a gruel and eat it as food. It is good to eat with other demulcent bulk laxative foods like chia and flax seed.

herb book 018

Common Name  Marsh mallow root/ leaves
Latin Name  Althea officinalis
Family Malvaceae (Mallow Family)
Parts Used Perennial- leaves picked in summer , root picked in Fall
Target Organs Digestion, stomach,  respiratory, kidney/ bladder      
Common Uses bulk laxative, inflammation, dry conditions, ulcers, colds, sore throat, dry coughs, catarrh, bronchitis, Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)
Properties anti-inflammatory, stomachic, cool demulcent/ emollient, diuretic, relaxing expectorant, immune stimulant, bulk laxative
Constituents Root: 35% mucilage, polysaccharides, pectin, tannins, asparagine         Leaf: mucilage, trace Essential oil
Cautions mild remedy
Dosage Tincture: 2-4ml                Tea: 2 tsp. steep 10 min
January 23, 2013

Tea Tree Essential Oil

The aborigines in Australia used the crushed ‘Tea Tree’ leaves as a tea infusion to treat coughs and colds, and externally to poultice wounds. The aroma is strong, medicinal and powerful.

T Tree webApply Tea tree  ‘neat,’ which means put it directly on to the skin without diluting it, which makes it ideal to treat wounds and cuts with its astringent and antimicrobial properties. Mix 50/50 with Lavender essential oil for burns and wounds and it is mild enough to use with children.

Latin Name Melaleuca alternifolia
Family Myrtaceae
Country of Origin Australia
Volatility Top note
Extraction steam distilled from the tree leaves
Colour pale yellow to colourless
Aroma strong, pungent, camphor, medicinal
Caution Contraindications Do not use during pregnancy and on babies under three. May cause skin irritations, always patch test first.  
Primary Uses Powerful disinfectant.It can be applied ‘neat’ (undiluted)


Skin: mouth rinse for gum and canker sores, thrush, cold sores, foot fungus, oily skin, acne, dandruff, athlete’s foot, lice, wounds, infections, warts

Respiratory: bronchitis, coughs, sinusitis, ear, nose, throat infections, colds, flu, strep throat, cold sores

Stimulates circulation and lymphatic system


Insect repellent

Properties Antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, powerful antiseptic, antifungal, antiviral, antibacterial, anti-depressant, antiparasitic, astringent, circulatory stimulant, lymphatic, stimulating expectorant, stimulant, immune tonic, insecticide, vulnerary 
Constituents Monoterpenes: Terpinenes,a + y-terpinene,

terpinen-4-ol(most antimicrobial activity), a- terpinolene, a-pinene, p-cymene

Monoterpene alcohol:



Oxides: 1, 8 cineole,

aka Eucalyptol

January 7, 2013

Basil Herb

Basil is an annual herb that likes full sun.  It is best known for being used in Italian cooking and making pesto

basil docBasil is easy to grow in the summertime either from seed or seedlings. Do not store basil in the fridge it does not like the cold and will turn an off colour. Trim the stalks and store in a pint glass with water on the counter which makes it easier to use in cuisine.

Common Name  Basil herb
Latin Name  Ocimum basilicum
Family Lamiaceae (Mint)
Parts Used annual herb picked all through summer
Target Organs digestion, nerves, respiratory, urinary, reproductive system
Common Uses Digestive conditions: digestive upset, gas, bloating, inflammation, liver congestioninfections, digestive, IBS, mucus colitis, nausea, pain,

Nervous system: tension, stress, nervousness,   fever, headache, exhaustion, depression,  fatigue(mental, physical)

Respiratory: flu, congestion, coughs, colds,  sinusitis, asthma

Reproductive system: infertility, Nutritive

Head: headaches, earache (external use only with essential oil), migraines

Used as insect repellent and for treating insect stings and bites.

Properties Anti-inflammatory, anticatarrhal, antispasmodic, antiseptic, anti-depressant, antimicrobial, antibacterial, astringent, emmenagogue, expectorant, digestive, relaxant, nervine, nutritive, hepatic, carminative, stimulant, warming, tonic,
Constituents Phenylpropanoids: eugenol, trans methyl isoeugenol,Monoterpene alcohols: linalool, geraniol,

Oxide: cineole

Phenol: methyl chavicol-40-50% Methyl ester: methyl cinnamate,

Monoterpenes: pinene, camphor, ocimene, mycrene, terpinolene,

Sesquiterpenes: caryophyllene, terpinolene;

Tannins 5%, saponins, flavones, ursolic acid

Cautions Mild remedy. Do not use during pregnancy
Dosage Tincture: 2-4ml               Tea: 2 tsp steep 10 min


January 7, 2013

Basil Essential Oil

There are many flavours of basil and it comes in purple or green varieties. There are many chemotypes of basil, depending on where it is grown, the chemical constituents are different, but they are all used the same way. In India it is called Holy basil.

basil doc (2)

Basil  is a nerve tonic relieving mental fatigue while sharpening the senses, it gives the mind clarity and focus for concentration. The clarifying effects are like rosemary, and it is good to use with rosemary for headaches along with lavender and peppermint. The antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory properties of basil treat digestive and respiratory conditions.

Latin Name Ocimum basilicum
Family Lamiaceae
Country of Origin Europe, Asia, Middle East, North America
Volatility Top note
Extraction Steam distilled from leaves
Colour colourless, pale amber
Aroma liquorice, sweet,
Caution Contraindications Do not use during pregnancy. May cause skin irritation.
Primary Uses Digestion: digestive upset, gas, bloating, inflammation, liver congestionRespiratory: sinus, flu, congestion, coughs, colds,Nervous: Stress, fatigue, mental, physical.Head: headaches, earache(external use only), migraines

Used as insect repellent and for treating insect stings and bites.


Properties Anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, anticatarrhal, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, cephalic, digestive, expectorant, emmenagogue, relaxant, stimulating/relaxing nervine, hepatic, stimulant, warming, tonic
Constituents Methyl ester: methyl cinnamate,Monoterpene alcohols: linalool, geraniol, Oxide: cineoleSesquiterpenes: caryophyllene, terpinolene,Phenol: methyl chavicol-40-50%

Phenylpropanoids: eugenol, trans methyl isoeugenol,

Monoterpenes: pinene, camphor, ocimene, mycrene, terpinolene,


%d bloggers like this: