The Miracle that is Helichrysum Essential Oil

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The more I use essential oils, the more I love them. As more people realize the harm that chemicals can do to the human body and to the environment, natural remedies and products have taken center stage.

People are choosing to use essential oils instead of over-the-counter pharmaceutical products, chemical cleaners, bug sprays, and even in place of prescription medications in some special instances, although I do not advise this without running it by your doctor first. In fact, it wouldn’t hurt to check with your doctor before using essential oils for ANY purpose.  They are powerful health tools that should be used carefully.

Helichrysum oil is one of the essential oils that has gotten more attention as this revolution against chemical products wages.  It is one of my favorite and moThis is an oil that is extracted from the helichrysum plant and is known as helichrysum italicum extract. The oil is created through the steam distillation of the plant’s flowers. It features a fruity aroma that has undertones of honey or tea and can be a pale yellow color to a red color.

About Helichrysum Oil

A member of the Asteraceae plant, helichrysum is native to the Mediterranean region as well as India. It’s been used for thousands of years throughout those areas for its medicinal properties including anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties in the oil. It’s been used to combat disease and to boost immune systems while also treating wounds, supporting the nervous system, and aiding in heart health, respiratory conditions, infections, and digestive issues.

Helichrysum oil is made up of different components that give it its various benefits and properties. The oil is primarily made up of 14 percent linalool, 15 percent limonene, 35 percent neryl acetate (the most important component), and 1 percent eudesmol. It also contains 1,8-cineole, camphene, pinenes, and terpinens, caryophyllene, myrcene, and similar chemical compounds all of which give it its various benefits.

The various compounds lend to the oil’s remedial values because they are able to enter into your body and bring about positive effects. Essential oils like helichrysum oil have the ability to enter into your blood stream through topical application, ingestion, and even aromatically. Along with the various benefits, this essential oil’s lovely fragrance will also provide you with emotional benefits and works as a fragrant element in your home. Now that you own this coveted oil you’ll be able to continually benefit from its various properties.

History of Helichrysum Oil

The use of helichrysum and its oil goes back to ancient times where it was reported that the flowers of the medicinal plant were dried and then presented as offerings to the gods in ancient Greece. It was traditionally used for medicinal purposes as well as culinary purposes throughout different cultures in the Mediterranean. In Italy, it was used for flavoring sauces and other dishes. It has also been used as a potent medicine in South Africa. There it has been used to treat things like rheumatism.

In medieval Europe, the flowers of the helichrysum plant were also used as strewing herbs. This means that the flowers were scattered on the floor of homes or on top of surfaces where their fragrance would serve as an air freshener or disinfectant. Throughout time the plant and the oil made from the flowers have been used in folk medicine. It was used for healing scars and remedying signs of aging on the skin.

Helichrysum has been used for thousands of years for multiple purposes across different cultures.

Dosage and Interaction

The dosage instructions for helichrysum oil can vary based on what you’re using it for and who is using it. A person’s health and age play a role in proper dosing instructions. The best thing to do is to follow all recipe measurements and instructions in order to avoid any unpleasant effects that might be caused by using too much oil. Just because helichrysum oil is natural and beneficial doesn’t mean that it’s completely safe in all forms and in all amounts.

Thankfully, helichrysum oil is quite gentle and has little-known side effects. So much so that it is one of the few oils that most adults can use without dilution (although dilution is always recommended with essential oils for precautionary measures). That said, there are certain instances where helichrysum oil should not be used. The oil has anticoagulant effects so it shouldn’t be used by people recovering from surgery or who are about to go through surgery since it can cause excess bleeding in these people and prevent proper healing. There have also been reports about the oil causing colic in people who have been suffering from gallstones. Similarly, people with blocked bile ducts should also avoid using the oil because it can actually trigger bile flow which can cause a person in this scenario problems. If you have allergies or sensitivities to plants in the Asteraceae or Compositae plant family, you should stay away from this oil. These plants include ragweed, daisies, marigolds, chrysanthemums, and similar plants. This doesn’t mean that you’ll be allergic to helichrysum but you might want to speak to a doctor or herbalist about using it or just experiment with it carefully to see if you have a poor reaction.

If you do use the oil and notice adverse reactions stop using it immediately and if need be seek medical attention.

Helichrysum Oil Studies and Research

With essential oils becoming more popular thanks to their various benefits, the scientific community has taken notice and have begun testing these properties to verify if they really exist. This is great because it gives scientific credibility to things that have been known for centuries. Here, you’ll find a few studies that were done on helichrysum oil so that you can see that the benefits are real. Researchers began studying helichrysum oil to test its pharmacological properties like its anti-inflammatory benefits and its antimicrobial properties. As they’ve done their research, scientists from the University of Bozok in Turkey believe that the antioxidant properties of the oil (phloroglucinols and acetophenones) are behind these health benefits. Researchers also found that the oil contains sesquiterpenes, pyrenes, and triterpenoids that have antifungal, antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory effects that give the oil its power. Other researchers in the Department of pharmacy at the University of Naples in Italy found that helichrysum oil’s ability to lower inflammation in the body is from a corticoid-like steroid that inhibits happenings in different pathways of arachidonic acid metabolism. The same research found that ethanoic compounds in the oil have antispasmodic properties when introduced into an inflamed digestive system which can help lower swelling in the gut as well as cramping and stomach pain. All research done on the oil shows that the chemical properties of the oil naturally give it benefits that can impact the body in similar ways that medication does. These studies done by professionals give credibility to the ancient writings and folklore traditions that named helichrysum oil as a medicinal oil that was beneficial inside and outside of the body.

Benefits of Helichrysum Essential Oil

Helichrysum oil has been used for a variety of reasons across cultures and centuries. It’s been used in cooking, as an expectorant, an analgesic, a diuretic, an anti-inflammatory, an anti-allergenic, an antispasmodic, an astringent, and more.  It has medicinal properties that make it beneficial for a multitude of reasons. Here, is a sampling of the benefits that you can take advantage of by using helichrysum oil.

Antispasmodic

Helichrysum oil is beneficial in stopping unwanted spasms or contractions of the body. These spasms can occur in muscles, nerves, the respiratory tract, and the intestines. This can result in cramping, coughs, convulsions, and similar effects. The properties of this essential oil can treat spasms by relieving them when they happen. The oil can also prevent them from happening when it’s used continuously as an aromatic.

Anticoagulant/Anti-hematic

As an anticoagulant, this essential oil can help thin out the blood in people with ailments like high cholesterol and similar blood-thickening disorders. The properties in helichrysum oil can thin out the blood and prevent things like clots, strokes, and heart attacks by stimulating enzyme in the body that can dissolve clots. This is a great benefit because it not only helps a serious issue but it can actually allow some people to become less dependent on harmful prescription drugs….BUT PLEASE CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR FIRST before using it for this, or any purpose.  This doesn’t mean that you should abandon those drugs if you’re on them, you absolutely shouldn’t, but using the oil might make you feel better and work in conjunction with your medication for your overall benefit.

Antiallergenic

Allergies can be a real problem and when an allergic reaction hits it can really take a toll on your system. People with allergies can suffer from rashes, stomach aches, breathing problems, and even cardiac arrest. All allergic reactions actually start in your internal organs and affect them. Using helichrysum oil can help calm down allergic reactions when they occur. This can give you enough time to get to a medical professional and take care of a severe allergy before it goes on too long and causes too much damage.

Anti-phlogistic

When a fever strikes there is inflammation that can go along with it. Helichrysum oil can combat this inflammation. Once this fever-induced inflammation is taken care of you will feel less tired and get over your fever that much faster.

Anti-inflammatory

Similar to the prior benefit, helichrysum oil can also provide relief from other inflammation within the body. The oil can calm down blood vessels that are causing inflammation and help lower blood pressure, and improve muscle function that is caused by inflammation, too. If you’re dealing with things like autoimmune diseases that cause joint pain and inflammation, this oil can be used in multiple ways to stop inflammation from occurring and for easing symptoms when the inflammation does occur. The antiinflammatory properties in helichrysum oil are so strong that it’s been used in cultures to ease even strong disorders like rheumatism.

Antitussive

People who suffer from chronic coughing need antitussives to suppress their coughs. Helichrysum oil can offer relief from chronic coughing and similar respiratory problems. If your coughing is caused by itchiness or phlegm build-up the essential oil can ease those problems and stop your coughing.

Nervine

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A nervine can help maintain your nervous system and keep it functioning properly which can protect it from outside harm. Your nervous system can be harmed as you age which can lead to anxiety or stress. This oil can keep your nervous system healthy and keep those feelings at bay.

Febrifuge

Fevers come about for various reasons. Since helichrysum oil has so many beneficial properties, it can cure the cause of the fever and reduce the fever as well. As it does this, you’ll experience an ease on other symptoms associated with fevers like chills, inflammation, and body aches.

Cicatrisant

Helichrysum oil can help wounds, cuts, scrapes, and skin abrasions heal quickly. It can also help reduce the appearances of scars from things like acne, pox, boils, and deep skin injuries. Expectorant The respiratory system expels phlegm when it is warm. Helichrysum oil warms the respiratory system and aids in the natural expelling of phlegm while preventing new phlegm from forming. This provides cough relief along with congestion relief. It can help you get over a cold faster or at least lessen the symptoms of a cold.

Cholagogue

One of the more unique benefits of helichrysum oil is that is can promote the excretion of bile into the stomach and neutralize acids in your system. This can help promote better digestion, reduce symptoms of acid reflux, and cure general acidity.

Antimicrobial/Antiseptic/Antiviral

One of the most beneficial properties oh helichrysum oil is its different disinfecting and protective properties. Helichrysum oil is antimicrobial and can inhibit the formation of contagions and can protect your body against infection. Similarly, it’s also antiseptic and can clean skin abrasions like wounds, scrapes, cuts, pin-pricks, and other sores that can possibly become infected if left open. Helichrysum oil is also an antiviral that can boost your immune system and stop harmful pathogens from infecting the body. This is believed to be linked to the oil’s strong anti-inflammatory properties that heal the gut (an important factor in your immune system).

The flavonoids and other compounds in the oil have shown to inhibit bacteria in the body as well as fungi and viruses, even powerful pathogens related to debilitating diseases.

Mucolytic

While mucus in your body is natural and necessary for healthy function, there can be problems that occur when your body overproduces mucus and begins to deposit it in the respiratory system in response to an infection. Helichrysum oil can thin out the excess mucus in your system. If there is hard mucus present that is proving hard to expel through coughing, the oil can thin that out too through hydrolysis and aid in expelling it. Diuretic As a diuretic, helichrysum oil can promote the frequency as well as the quantity of urination. This will help flush your body of toxins that are filtered from your blood and into your urine. The removal of urine can help stabilize your blood pressure and help you lose weight and improve digestion. Similarly, the essential oil can also help stimulate gastric juices that can help you break down your food which will prevent indigestion and reduce bloating. The oil can be used to treat intestinal issues and aid in natural gut health.

Splenic

If you have anemia, helichrysum oil can help you, too. The oil can aid in the production of red blood cells as well as the recycling of the red blood cells by keeping your spleen healthy and functioning properly.

Cytophylactic

Cell health is incredibly important to your overall health. New cells have to be produced while dead cells have to be recycled. Helichrysum oil promotes this cell health and is especially beneficial for children who are still growing or for those who have obstructed growth. Hepatic Helichrysum oil can help soothe your liver and promote its overall health. It can relieve liver inflammation and regulate discharge from it which helps stave off infection. This will help detoxify your body and treat things like liver disease by clearing heavy metals, bacteria, and free radicals from your body. Similarly, helichrysum oil can also reduce kidney stone development by aiding the in the detoxification of the liver and kidneys through the topical application of the oil on the lower abdomen.

Fungicidal

The antifungal properties of helichrysum oil can help prohibit the growth of fungal infections in the body. Through the oil’s acetophenones, terpenoids, and phloroglucinols the oil can work against things like Candida, according to studies. To help aid in the recovery from fungal infections the oil can also boost your immune system and battle inflammation in the body that might be caused by the Candida or similar fungal infection.

Skin Care Benefits

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Helichrysum oil has a lot of benefits for your skin. It can act like an emollient and smooth out rough skin and keep it soft and healthy by helping it retain moisture and preventing cracking. It can also protect your skin against outside pathogens through its antibiotic properties found in the flavonoids and terpenes. This is great for protecting your skin from everything from general irritation to harmful infections. Similarly, it can promote faster and better healing of skin abrasions. It can even be used to soothe things like poison ivy, hives, and shaving bumps. The essential oil can also provide relief for sunburn and can protect against sun damage and skin cancer. The oil can hydrate your burnt skin and prevent it from swelling and causing your pain after too much sun exposure. By blocking UV rays, helichrysum oil can also reduce wrinkles, fine lines, and similar signs of aging. This will also help lower your risk of skin cancer. The oil can also promote healthy skin cell growth which can help you heal from burns faster. Another skin benefit is the oil’s ability to treat acne.

Thanks to its antibiotic and antimicrobial properties, the oil can cure acne without drying out your skin or causing irritation like alcohol based products can. It can also be used to cleanse your skin and prevent new breakouts from forming. If you have scars from acne, it can help reduce their appearance, too. All of the skin care benefits associated with the oil also have to do with the cell regenerations properties of helichrysum oil. This promotes the natural glow of your skin and smooths it out aiding in the prevention and treatment of acne, wrinkles, pigmentation discoloration, and oxidative skin damage. It can also help fade stretch marks and soothe eczema and psoriasis. With all of the beneficial properties of the oil working together, helichrysum oil is really a cure-all for skin problems.

Later on, you’ll find out how to use the oil to help with various skin problems. You’ll also get some great DIY recipes to make skin products for yourself using your helichrysum oil and other natural products.

Benefits for Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis causes a host of problems for those who suffer from it. Helichrysum oil can help keep symptoms of the illness at bay while alleviating present symptoms as it supports your neurological system. If you have MS or known someone who has it, consider using helichrysum oil along with your medication to help deal with the pain and symptoms that can affect day to day living.

Analgesic

This essential oil can help lower muscle pain in the body according to research. The oil’s natural ability to lower inflammation and improve blood circulation can aid in overall pain relief. Your nerves, muscle tissue, and joints will all receive healing support from the oil which can treat pain related to things like arthritis, injuries from over exertion, fibromyalgia pain, and general aches.

Sports Injury Relief

Thanks to a lot of the aforementioned properties, helichrysum oil is great for treating a whole host of sports injuries including aches, muscle strains, and inflammation. It can even help with abrasions like rope or mat burn, bruises, and cuts. Blood clots and micro tears can also be treated with the essential oil. It’ll also treat other problems caused by an injury like swelling, capillary leaks, cell death and damage, and tissue damage. When used properly and in a timely manner, the oil can even prevent hemorrhaging after an injury.

Other Health Benefits

As you can by now tell, helichrysum oil has a wide range of benefits due to its various properties granted to it through the chemical compounds that it’s made of. Other health benefits of the oil include neutralizing harmful things like nicotine and caffeine. It can also help clear up herpes outbreaks, sinusitis, colitis, cystitis, and varicose veins. It also has positive effects on mental function.

The essential oil is also a natural defense against certain types of cancers according to studies. There are special compounds in the oil that actually stop oxidative stress within the body which can inhibit the growth of cancer. Similar research found that the oil can protect against DNA damage caused by radiation, cell death/mutation, and tumor growth.

Helichrysum oil can also be a natural soother for hemorrhoids. The oil can reduce both the pain and the swelling attributed to the ailment through topical application on the affected area several times a day.

For cognitive function, the aroma of helichrysum oil can aid in emotional support as well as mood stabilization. According to aromatherapy research, the aroma of the oil can especially help with half-conscious anger, negative attitudes, resentment, and bitterness. It can help you deal with unresolved emotions and in restoring memories and is used in psychotherapy to help people dealing with emotional traumas. It was mentioned briefly, but helichrysum oil can also treat cardiovascular conditions like high blood pressure, palpitations, and irregular heartbeats. It can prevent strokes and similar problems through its various properties. According to studies, the oil has caryophyllene and curcumin in it that has a positive effect on blood pressure. As touched upon earlier, helichrysum oil can also help treat flatulence, ulcers, diarrhea, intestinal pain, vomiting, indigestion, urinary infections, and stomach cramping.

How to Use Helichrysum Essential Oil

Helichrysum oil can be used for a variety of different things and through various methods. You can choose to use your essential oil by itself or you can choose to mix it with other essential oils. You may even choose to follow some recipes and mix your helichrysum oil with other ingredients to create great home remedies that you can use for different things.

Besides being used for its health benefits, the oil has also been used as a perfume, as incense, and even as a natural way to kill mosquito larvae. The natural chemical compounds in the oil have undergone testing and intense research to prove the various health benefits of the oil, benefits that have been known for centuries and have been used throughout folklore. You can use your oil in whatever way necessary by applying it directly to your skin, inhaling the vapors, or using it in a homemade product.

How it Works

Helichrysum oil (and all essential oils) get their beneficial properties from the chemical compounds that the oil is made of.  Terpenes, flavonoids, and other compounds in the oil enter your bloodstream through either topical application, ingestion, or aromatically. Once in your bloodstream, these compounds can combat problems in the body and help promote general health. Certain compounds are even able to pass between the blood-brain barrier where they can help with cellular health and a deeper level. As soon as you use your helichrysum oil, your body will be able to start reaping the benefits no matter how you decide to use the oil in your personal life. Essential oils are quite strong and you should always follow all directions, measurements, and dosage suggestions when using them.

If you’re unfamiliar with a specific oil, including helichrysum oil, it can be beneficial to consult an aromatherapist or a herbalist who knows about essential oils. They can tell you how to properly use them in order to benefit completely from them without causing yourself any harm by misusing the oil.

Oral Application

There is an on-going debate on whether or not essential oils (no matter how mild) should be ingested in any form. I’m convinced that they should not be ingested, but many people do it.  Again, I’d advice seeking assistance from one’s doctor before trying them orally.

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