Tag Archives: depression

Cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum)

Cardamomheader

Family: Zingiberaceae

Synonyms: Green cardamom, small cardamom, Amomum elettaria

Aroma: Warm and spicy with a slightly penetrating camphoraceous-cineole like odour

CardamonEssOilColour: Colourless to pale yellow, darkens when exposed to sunlight

Plant: A leafy stemmed shrub up to 4 metres high with very long leaves bearing small, yellow flowers with purple tips. The oblong grey fruit contains upwards of 20 dark red-brown seeds and are gathered just before they are ripe.

Main Growing Areas: Sri Lanka, India, Guatemala and El Salvador

Major Constituents: 1,8 cineole, alpha-terpineol, linalool, terpinene-4-ol, alpha-terpinyl acetate, geraniol

Interesting snippets: Reputed to be one of the oldest known spices.
Cardamom has been used in Ayurveda and Chinese medicine for over 3000 years and was brought to Europe by the Greeks in the 4th century BC.

It is a principal ingredient in curry powder, and is used to flavour pastries, liqueurs and chewing gum.

Interestingly, Scandinavians use more cardamom than anyone else in the Western Hemisphere. They use it to flavour breads, cakes, candies, sausages and other meats. Their use of it originated with the Vikings who more than a 1000 years ago purchased it in Constantinople for their use back home.

cardamom-pods and seedsPart of Plant used / Extraction: Seeds/steam distillation

Therapeutic actions: Analgesic, antispasmodic, digestive, nausea and vomiting, colic, cramps, chronic bronchitis, lethargy, flatulence, coughs and colds

Emotional and Spiritual: Nervous exhaustion, depression, poor concentration, overthinking and burdened by worries, feelings of weakness and fatigue. Calming, grounding, soothing & uplifting emotionally. Cardamom EO can help restore an “appetite for life”, our ability to digest, assimilate & be nourished by life.

Joy Bowles writes that psychologically cardamom seems to open and widen the imagination

Gabriel Mojay writes that cardamom is indicated for poor concentration, overthinking and worry – especially where there is a degree of nervous exhaustion. He further states that whenever we feel deprived of opportunity or generosity and fear that we may be denied fulfillment, cardamom oil reminds us of life’s true abundance and restores our desire for contentment.

Valerie Ann Worwood writes, cardamom gives us wisdom when we are overburdened with responsibilities, when we need to tap into our generosity of spirit to allow our hearts to be open and expansive in order to be gracious in our dealings with others. Also it gives encouragement when we need to take a step forward to offer a hand in friendship when we see that a person is in need.

Barry Kapp writes that cardamom taps into the corridor that leads us to our higher selves in a gentle and positive way. She expels fear, being stuck, frozenness and gives us feelings of courage, stamina, patience and strength.

Keim Loughran and Bull suggest cardamom helps to teach others with a grounded, clear, heart centred perspective and also helps us to accept life as it is while encouraging an enthusiasm for it.

Safety: Non-irritating, non-sensitising, non-toxic. Tisserand and Young suggest not applying cardamom to or near the face of infants or children due to her high level of 1,8 cineole.

Note: Cardamom is often adulterated with 1,8 cineole from eucalyptus or camphor oil

Sources:
Battaglia S, The Complete Guide To Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion, Australia (1995)
Battaglia S, The Complete Guide To Aromatherapy. Third Edition. Black Pepper Creative Pty Ltd, Australia (2018)
Berkowsky B, Berkowsky’s Synthesis Materia Medica/Spiritualis of Essential Oils (2006)
Bowles E.J, The A to Z of Essential Oils. New Burlington Books (2003)
Kapp B, Wisdom of the Earth Speaks, The Truth About Medicinal Aromatherapy. www.WisdomoftheEarth.com (2008)
Keim Loughran J, Bull R, Aromatherapy & Subtle energy techniques, Frog Books (2000)
Mojay G, Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit. Hodder and Stoughton (1996)
Tisserand R and Young R, Essential Oil Safety Second Edition, Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014
Worwood V.A, The Fragrant Heavens. Doubleday Publishing UK (1999)

Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin)

patchouli header

Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae)

Synonyms: P. patchouly, patchouli oil

Aroma: Rich, sweet, herbaceous, aromatic, spicy and woody balsamic. Patchouli gets better with age.

Colour: Deep orange red

Patchouli flowerPlant: Evergreen herb with large fragrant leaves and hairy square stems that grows to a metre tall. On axillary and terminal stems flower spikes of clusters of tiny white to purple flowers form. As these fade fine brown seeds form in small capsules like tiny knots on the spikes.

Main Growing Areas: Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, China, India, Mauritius, East and West Indies, Paraguay, Vietnam

Major Constituents: patchouli alcohol, alpha and beta patchoulene may contribute to anti-itching properties of the oil, beta-caryophyllene – anti-inflammatory, beta-elemene – antitumour

Interesting snippets: In the 18th and 19th centuries Chinese traders travelling to the Middle East used patchouli to treat carpets and fabrics to prevent moths laying their eggs in the cloth and fungal deterioration.

In the 1960’s hippies used patchouli to cover the smell of burnt cannabis.

During the Vietnam War, American soldiers used patchouli to mask the smell of the graves of enemy soldiers killed in combat.

Dried patchouli leaves were placed amongst the folds of Indian cashmere shawls in Victorian times to protect them from moths.

Part of Plant used / Extraction: Dried fermented leaves by steam distillation.

Therapeutic actions: nausea, headaches, colds, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, haemorrhoids, cracked sore skin, eczema, psoriasis, tinea, acne, impetigo, herpes

Emotional and Spiritual: depression, anxiety, stress, insomnia, nervousness

Patricia Davis writes that patchouli is especially valuable for dreamers and people who tend to neglect or feel detached from their physical bodies. Patchouli helps to ground and integrate energy and keep us in touch with our physical selves.

Robbi Zeck writes that the rich, musty, wood scent of Patchouli awakens within the soul a deep yearning for the comforting presence of peace, bringing Spiritual insights to all realms.
Patchouli’s slow peacefulness brings about a state of mind and wholehearted feeling where unification occurs with the soul on all levels.

Gabriel Mojay writes that patchouli is good for those who, due to excessive mental activity and nervous strain, feel ‘out of touch’ with their body and their sensuality.

Aromatherapy Insight Card:

Patchouli Insight card

UNITY
Feeling trapped in one of many areas of your life and feeling like those areas are not working together? Patchouli unites all levels of your existence, allowing you to focus and bring heart and head to work together, rising above self-imposed barriers and enjoying all that life presents. Patchouli awakens a sense of peace that reaches into all areas of your life. Don’t get ruffled and caught in the false ego. Stay self-assured, and realize your real strength lies in being you.

Fragrant Change Healing Card: I feel a sense of peace in all areas of my life.

Contemplations for the Soul:

Patchouli CFTS

Is your mind on a continual loop making you unable to think clearly due to worry?
Have you imposed limits on what you think you can achieve?
Do you feel you have to be someone else to achieve your goals?
Do you long for peace in your life?
Realize that worry will not improve the situation and will banish peace from your life.
Try grounding yourself by going outside and putting your bare feet on the ground.
Breathe slowly in and out until you feel calmer then look at what action you can take to reduce your worry.
Know that you can be yourself and still achieve your goals.
Peace be with you.

Safety: Non-irritating, non-sensitising, non-toxic

Sources: Battaglia S, The Complete Guide To Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion, Australia (1995)
Bowles E.J, The A to Z of Essential Oils. New Burlington Books (2003)
Davis P, Subtle Aromatherapy. The C.W.Daniel Company Ltd. (1992)
Hodges C. Contemplations for the Soul (2016)
Hodges C, Fragrant Change Healing Cards (2015)
Jefferies J, Patchouli Essential Oil Profile. Aromatherapy Today, Vol.39 (2007)
Jefferies J, Osborn K, Aromatherapy Insight Cards. Living Energy, Aust. (2nd Ed. 2005)
Mojay G, Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit. Hodder and Stoughton (1996)
Zeck R, The Blossoming Heart. Aroma Tours (2004)

 

Melissa (Melissa officinalis)

melissa header

Family: Lamiaceae

Synonyms: Lemon balm, balm, common balm, bee balm.

Aroma: Fresh, sweet, lemony, herbaceous.

Colour: Pale yellow.

Melissa flowersPlant: Perennial herb that grows up to 90cm with tiny white or pink flowers. When crushed the leaves exude a sweet lemony aroma.

Main Growing Areas: France, Germany, Italy, Spain.

Major Constituents: Geranial, neral, citronellal, citral, beta-caryophyllene.

Interesting snippets: Melissa is said to be the name of the Cretan princess who first discovered how to get honey.

King Charlemagne (742-814) ordered lemon balm to be planted in every monastery garden because of its beauty.

Melissa was used in Arabia in the 10th century as a treatment for melancholy.

Part of Plant used / Extraction: Steam distillation of the aerial parts of the plant before it flowers. The highest yields are extracted in late summer from the lower parts of the plant. Oil yield is approximately 0.02% by weight. It is often adulterated with lemongrass or citronella oils.

Therapeutic actions: Cold sores, flu, shingles, nausea, migraines, painful periods.

Emotional and Spiritual: Nervous exhaustion.
Robbi Zeck writes that like a beam of light on a dark winter’s day, melissa softens extreme emotions, eases resentment, gladdens the heart and engages the soul in its own graceful rhythm.

Gabriel Mojay writes that melissa is important for depression, particularly in those who are emotionally sensitive, easily traumatised by confrontation and do not respond well to pressure. Melissa can reach the deepest layers of the psyche and can help to restore both clarity and security to a confused, dependent soul.

Fragrant Change Healing Card: I express my hurt and anger in a healthy way.

Melissa FCHC

Safety: Possible skin irritant to hypersensitive people, possibly sensitising, non-toxic.

Sources: Battaglia S, The Complete Guide To Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion, Australia (1995)
Bowles E.J, The A to Z of Essential Oils. New Burlington Books (2003)
Jefferies J, Melissa Essential Oil Profile. Aromatherapy Today, Vol.35 (2006)
Hodges C, Fragrant Change Healing Cards (2015)
Mojay G, Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit. Hodder and Stoughton (1996)
Zeck R, The Blossoming Heart. Aroma Tours (2004)

Mandarin (Citrus reticulata)

mandarin

Family: Rutaceae

Synonyms: C.nobilis, C.deliciosa, C. madurensis

Aroma: Sweet, fresh, citrus, mandarin

Colour: Green, reddish orange.

Mandarins 22Plant: Smaller and more spreading than the orange tree with smaller leaves and fruit which are slightly flattened at both ends.

Main Growing Areas: Brazil, Spain, Italy, California, China, Australia.

Major Constituents: a-pinene, a-thujone, limonene, y-terpinolene, methyl N methyl- anthranilate.

Interesting snippets: The fruit was a traditional gift to the mandarins of China.
Symbol of prosperity and good fortune during Chinese New Year.
The giant swallowtail butterfly relies on the citrus family for larval food to produce the caterpillars.

Part of Plant used / Extraction: Fruit peel is cold pressed.

Therapeutic actions: In France mandarin is considered a safe children’s remedy for indigestion and hiccups. Antispasmodic, useful for PMS and cramped muscles. Prevents stretchmarks in pregnancy.

Emotional and Spiritual: Uplifting, depression, anxiety, irritable over-tired children.

Aromatherapy Insight Card:Mandarin

HAPPINESS
Mandarin oil brings that happiness and childlike quality to life.
Time to lighten up and enjoy life. I always think of a child peeling a mandarin when I smell this aroma. I see their faces lighting up as they peel the fruit with ease. Bring out your inner child to play, and remove abuse and grimness from your life. Stop dwelling on the past and let’s get back to enjoying life again.
Mandarin allows you to feel calm and soothed, but, at the same time, refreshed and inspired. Be happy.

Fragrant Change Healing Card: I make time for fun and play every day.

Mandarin

Safety: Non-irritating, non-sensitising, non-toxic. Keep in the fridge to prolong her shelf life (around a year). If she smells pinelike don’t use her on the skin as she may cause skin sensitization. Can still be used in a vaporiser or for cleaning without problems.

Sources: Atterby D, Mandarin Essential Oil Profile. Aromatherapy Today, Vol.44 (2009)
Battaglia S, The Complete Guide To Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion, Australia (1995)
Bowles E.J, The A to Z of Essential Oils. New Burlington Books (2003)
Jefferies J, Osborn. K, Aromatherapy Insight Cards. Living Energy, Aust. (2nd Ed. 2005)

Bergamot (Citrus bergamia)

Bergamot

Bergamot lightens the shadows of the mind, bringing illumination and laughter.
Valerie Ann Worwood

Family: Rutaceae

Synonyms: Citrus aurantium ssp. bergamia

Aroma: Sweet, fruity and refreshing

Colour: Light yellow with a hint of green

Bergamot treePlant: The bergamot tree grows up to 12 metres high but is kept to 4 or 5 metres for easy picking. It has deep green leaves and small white fragrant flowers. The fruit ripening from green to a lemon yellow colour is the size of a small orange and slightly spherical with a sour bitter taste.

Main Growing Areas: Italy, Ivory Coast.

Major Constituents: Limonene, linalyl acetate, linalool, bergaptene, alpha and beta pinenes
The alcohol and ester content can vary significantly due to the weather, the time of harvest and the handling of the fruit. All this will affect the aroma of the essential oil.

black-teaInteresting snippets: Used to flavour Earl Grey Tea and as a major ingredient in eau-de-cologne.
The essential oil has a long use in Italian folk medicine as a remedy for fever and worms.
Bergamot was once used to help treat malaria.

Part of Plant used /Extraction: Cold expression of the peel of the almost ripe fruit

Therapeutic actions: Skin problems including acne, cold sores, chicken pox, shingles and eczema. Also helpful for respiratory and digestive issues including flu, sore throat, laryngitis and bronchitis, dyspepsia, flatulence, colic, indigestion and loss of appetite. Vaginal and urinary infections – use in douche or hip bath.

Emotional and Spiritual: Tension, irritability, frustration, depression, grief and sadness. Uplifting.

Robbi Zeck writes that there are blessings in discomfort if you choose to examine why your spirit is flat, sad or depressed. During these times of dark reflection bergamot will heal and cheer your soul, encouraging you to continue to explore your deeper innermost feelings.

Gabriel Mojay writes that bergamot oil encourages the release of pent-up feelings – feelings that can lead not only to depression, but also to insomnia, anxiety and sudden mood swings. It also helps us to relax and “let go”.

Aromatherapy Insight Card:

Bergamot

CHEERFULNESS
Bergamot promotes cheerfulness and soothes feelings of anger and frustration.
Feeling flat and tired? Lost your spark and enthusiasm for life? Use the essence of Bergamot to access your deeper levels and cheer your heart and soul, lift depression and help gain confidence and motivation. Release repressed emotions that are blocking your vital force and stopping you from being all that you want to be. Allow your mind to wander to a place where “cheerfulness” lives, where you can think lively thoughts and feel refreshed. Create a productive and caring environment.

Safety: Due to the furocoumarins, bergamot is photosensitive and can cause serious skin burns or a condition known as berloque dermatitis. (An irregular darkening of the skin which can last several years). Avoid direct exposure to sunlight or sunbed rays for 12 hours after applying the diluted oil to the skin. This rule doesn’t apply to soaps and shampoos or any products that are immediately washed off the skin. You can also buy Bergaptene free essential oil which has no photosensitivity issues.

Contemplations for the Soul Card:

Bergamot FCHC

Are you feeling flat, tired, angry, stressed or depressed?
Have you lost someone or something and closed yourself off to the love and happiness that is available to you?
Perhaps it’s time for some soul searching to see what lies behind these dark feelings you have.
One cause maybe a lack of self acceptance and self love.
It’s time to shine a light on these areas, examine and then release them.
Allow the feelings of lightness, joy, serenity, wisdom, self-acceptance and love for yourself and others to enter into your life.
Feel your creativity and inspiration begin to flow as you release the dark and allow the light to enter your soul.

Sources:
Battaglia S, The Complete Guide To Aromatherapy. The Perfect Potion, Australia (1995)
Bowles E.J, The A to Z of Essential Oils. New Burlington Books (2003)
Fischer-Rizzi, S, Complete Aromatherapy Handbook. Essential Oils for Radiant Health Sterling Publishing Company (1990)
Hodges C. Contemplations for the Soul (2016)
Jefferies J, Osborn. K, Aromatherapy Insight Cards. Living Energy, Aust. (2nd Ed. 2005)
Kerr, J, Bergamot Essential Oil Profile. Aromatherapy Today, Vol.11 (1999)
Mojay G, Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit. Hodder and Stoughton (1996)
Worwood, V.A, The Fragrant Heavens. Doubleday Publishing UK (1999)
Zeck R, The Blossoming Heart. Aroma Tours (2004)

Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea)

clary sage

Clary sage carries spiritual timelessness within itself
– a second could be a year, a year a second –
and brings the realization
that it’s how much love we can pour into a second that counts.
Valerie Ann Worwood

Clary sage (Salvia sclarea) should not be confused with Sage (Salvia officinalis).
Family: Lamiaceae

Synonyms: Muscatel sage, clary.

Aroma: Bittersweet, spicy, camphoraceous, muscat-like.

Colour: Pale yellowy green

Clary sagePlant: Biennial or perennial herb grows between 30 and 100cm with tall flower spikes rising above hairy heart-shaped leaves. The flowers are pale blue, lavender, pink or white.

Main Growing Areas: France, Russia, USA, Morocco, England, the Mediterranean, Australia.

Major Constituents: The exact composition of the oil varies depending on the area where it is grown. Linalyl acetate, linalool, alpha-terpineol, geraniol, sclareol.

Interesting snippets: The herb was highly esteemed in the Middle Ages for digestive disorders, uterine and menstrual complaints and as a general nerve tonic.
In 19th century England the herb was used to add bitterness when brewing beer. The beer was renowned for producing a euphoric intoxication followed by a severe headache.
Was used to combat the night sweats and strengthen the immune system of patients with tuberculosis in the past.

clary-sage-6Part of Plant used / Extraction: Flowering tops and foliage by steam distillation. A higher elevation and drier soil will yield 2-3 times more oil per plant than one grown at a lower elevation and in moist soil.

Therapeutic actions: Muscle relaxant, antispasmodic and regulator of woman’s hormones. Scanty periods, PMS and said to be a uterine tonic able to induce labour and to restart contractions if they have stopped. Muscular stiffness and spasm, tired, aching legs, headache and migraine.

Emotional and Spiritual: Stress related conditions. She seems to encourage vivid dreams and enhances creative work due to her narcotic effect. Clary sage causes feelings of euphoria and elation.

Gabriel Mojay writes that clary sage is indicated for nervous anxiety and depression characterised by changeable moods, indecision and emotional confusion. When we have lost our felt instinct for our life’s true purpose unable to see clearly in the here and now clary sage restores lucidity to the instincts and allows inspiration to flow.

Robbi Zeck writes that clary sage switches on the inner lights, caresses the creative mind, awakens your sensory perception and broadens your intuitive horizons. It enables you to access deeper parts of the subconscious as you explore options and sift through information, leading to inspired decision-making.

Aromatherapy Insight Card:

Clary Sage Insight card Courtesy of J.Jefferies & K.Osborn

CLARITY
For times of emotional and mental confusion, mood swings and indecision, or just when you feel burnt out and weepy. Clary Sage restores harmony and regenerates interest in life, helping you to be clear about what you want and how to get it. Do not be influenced by others. Stay clear and focused as to what you want. Access and work with your intuition to remove events that distract you from your path. Travel that road emotionally uplifted, but in a calm state. Clary Sage does not throw you over the top, but keeps you confident and steadfast in reality by connecting you to the earth. Broaden your perception and your horizons, tapping into your subconscious to make those choices clearly, and now.

Fragrant Change Healing Card: I listen to my intuition and follow its guidance.

Clary Sage Fragrant Change Healing card

Safety: Non-irritating, non-sensitising, non-toxic. Best to avoid using if you will be drinking alcohol as she can lead to a severe hangover and nightmares. Some authors have suggested this oil not be used during pregnancy as it may cause a miscarriage but there has been no evidence shown that supports this.

Sources: Bowles E.J, The A to Z of Essential Oils. New Burlington Books (2003)
Davis, P, Aromatherapy, An A-Z. The C.W.Daniel Company Ltd. (1996)
Hodges C, Fragrant Change Healing Cards (2015)
Jefferies J, Osborn. K, Aromatherapy Insight Cards. Living Energy, Aust. (2nd Ed. 2005)
Kerr, J, Clary Sage Essential Oil Profile. Aromatherapy Today, Vol.3 (1997)
Mojay G, Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit. Hodder and Stoughton (1996)
Worwood, V.A, The Fragrant Heavens. Doubleday Publishing UK (1999)
Zeck R, The Blossoming Heart. Aroma Tours (2004)