This post is hugely overdo for several reasons. One, it’s been months since I’ve put anything – even a re-blog – out there. Two, I just miss you all. Three, this is something where I’ve changed my mind.
It’s allowed. Really. Changing my mind. I figured I should set the record straight(er).
Way back when I was doing a series for Horse Nation, I wrote a piece on Aromatherapy. To sum up, at best I was ho-hum about it all. I think I wrote that article just after bashing homeopathic remedies and was trying my darnedest to be really nice. Honestly at that time, I thought essential oils were hokum. Now, I’m pretty gung-ho for oils.
What happened? I started using essential oils. Diffused, applied topically, taken internally. I have noticed positive effects. I have not noticed negative effects.
I’m going to link to an article that attempts to explain the differences between essential oils and traditional pharmaceuticals. I do this a little hesitantly. Why? I’m not sure why. Maybe just pure skepticism. There are a few sweeping claims and the tone towards allopathic medicine is a little negative. Even for me.
If you want to, here’s the article. Read it if you like, then come back. Or wait and read my mental meanderings then read the article. Or, skip the link all together. Whatever works for you.
At my very core I am a skeptic. Anything that promises all good and no bad leaves me wondering how real (and effective) that thing could possibly be. Until I try it and notice results (or not) my own skepticism is not satisfied. Even then, I have been taught that if something can not be proven scientifically, then it must not be “real”. Not just that it works, but how it works. Once it can be explained, it’s “real”.
There are studies showing that essential oils work. However, it seems that the really real sciencey sorts find issues with the studies proving that essential oils work. So, if it hasn’t been scientifically proven to be “real” then any results must have been due to the placebo effect.
Do I care if any results are due to placebo effect? Ummm… let’s see if I feel better and haven’t been bothered with any bad side-effects, then no. I don’t care.
As an aside, I suspect I will always be a skeptic. Even with witnessing the lightest touch making huge, gigantic changes for people during body work sessions. Whether as the therapist or the recipient – I can’t explain how some of the therapies work to help, or why… they just do. I can’t explain why the light bulb exploded (not fizzled and died - literally exploded in the socket) at my last session. It sure did though.
I guess I’ll just go with it. I can question how and why things work, but still know that they do. Somehow. I could choose to try to explain things and end up attempting to baffle with bullshit, or dazzle with shiny words. I could get all excited about the difference between natural and synthetic molecules, but really I don’t know if that’s where the effectiveness is coming from. So, I’ll just go along with calling it the placebo effect. At least with the essential oils it is a nice smelling placebo.
If I’m in a dire medical emergency am I going to forego a doctor’s care in preference for essential oils? Most likely not. I may use some essential oils prior to going to the doctor though. If I feel better by the time I can get medical care, then I guess it must not have been that dire of an emergency.
Here’s the thing though. The oils do have positive effects. So far I’ve been using them for a couple of months. The biggest side-effect I’ve noticed is that I’m happier. Really. What a pain in the ass, right?
Maybe it’s because I’m less achey. Oh and there was that night when I used a blend that completely stopped some serious muscle cramps in my legs.
My moods are more stable. My energy level is more sustained.
I’ve tried them on my horses. Pretty sure I managed to avert a colic episode.
Are they a cure-all. No. They aren’t hurting though.
If you are curious or interested in trying some essential oils for yourself, feel free to check out http://www.mydoterra.com/lizbarnard/
The fine print… yes I am an Independent Product Consultant for dōTERRA. My IPC# is 410520. If you click through to my website and purchase something, I will make some money. At least that’s what I’ve been told.
Another aside – It is a direct sales company. I’ve been told I seem to be smarter than to get hooked into all that. I do believe I am smart. Most of the time. So, why did I get tangled up with dōTERRA? Simple answer is the oils. I tried their peppermint oil and it was all over. I didn’t realize peppermint oil could smell that amazing. I didn’t realize all the other peppermint oil I had tried in the past had most likely been diluted with sub-par (even synthetic) oils. I figured if other companies did that with a relatively inexpensive oil like peppermint, what might they possibly be doing to some of the more rare and expensive oils. Most of the oils from dōTERRA can be safely ingested. (The oils that can not be taken internally would not be safe to do so, no matter the source.) I figure if it’s safe for my body to digest, then it would be more than safe to apply topically or breathe in.
I could gush on, but I think you get the point. Have you tried essential oils? Have they been Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade? Good, bad?