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Anti-inflammatory essential oils: the complete file

Essential oil

 

Even if the notion of well-being doesn’t have a universal definition, problems or worries affecting well-being are common to all. Inflammation in any area of the body is always unpleasant. For some individuals, this has psychological and even physical impacts. Dermatoses (e.g. scabies or herpes) are particularly difficult to live with and can lead to depression. Pruritus makes you want to scratch constantly, leading to insomnia or stress. Some essential oils have anti-inflammatory properties and can help you!

 

WHAT IS AN ANTI-INFLAMMATORY ESSENTIAL OIL?

An anti-inflammatory essential oil is one whose aromatic compounds directly combat inflammation at its source.

What exactly is inflammation?

Inflammation is the immune system’s response to an internal aggression, such as a tumour, or an external aggression, such as an infection (bacteria or virus). It is usually local, and is accompanied by signs such as pain or tumours.

 

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ANTI-INFLAMMATORY AND PAIN-RELIEVING, ANTALGIC AND ANALGESIC ESSENTIAL OILS?

 

An “anti-inflammatory” essential oil contains “active” principles that fight inflammation directly, thereby attenuating its effects.

An antalgic essential oil aims to reduce pain, which is one of the clinical signs of inflammation.

Pain-relieving” essential oils:

It is either antalgic, i.e. it reduces the body’s sensitivity to pain, or analgesic, attenuating local pain by targeting it.

 

 

pink skin illustration

THE ANTI-INFLAMMATORY ESSENTIAL OILS FOR THE SKIN

The skin forms the external envelope that protects against external aggression. It can be subject to benign, infectious or malignant diseases and lesions, causing inflammation.

There are various causes:

-an imbalance in the dermis or epidermis, such as acne.

-a virus or parasite: herpes or scabies.

-a failure of the skin tissues’ immune system: psoriasis, which is the manifestation of abnormal and rapid renewal of skin cells.

-In some cases (a minority), we are still unable to define the exact cause. Such is the case with eczema. It’s characterized by a mild inflammation or irritation that makes the skin itch.

In addition, some pathologies lead to unpleasant and unsightly growths, such as corns or warts.

 

 

The anti-inflammatory EO for the skin are:

  • Ho wood EO (contains trans-oxide of linalool and linalool).

Used in case of: acne, stretch marks and burns.

  • Lemon EO (contains limonene, beta-pinene and citrals)

To help with: acne and sebum excess.

Used in the treatment of: scabies

Helpful in case of: warts and mycosis

Used in the treatment of: wounds, psoriasis and burns.

Valuable in the: relief of localised itching, eczema and hives.

  • Niaouli EO (contains sesquiterpene carbides and 1,8-cineole),

Used to help with: skin infections, mycosis, herpes, warts, carbuncle, acne, burns…

Beneficial against: viral infections, eczema, acne, measles

  • Ravintsara EO (contains 1,8-cineole, monoterpene alcohols and alpha-pinene).

Used to help with: cold sores, viral and bacterial infections, herpes and all skin problems such as acne.

Useful in case of: warts, eczema, pruritis, mycosis, cold sores, psoriasis, sebum excess…

 

green lungs illustration

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY ESSENTIAL OILS FOR THE RESPIRATORY SYSTEM

The respiratory system provides the body with the oxygen it needs and rejects carbon dioxide and other unnecessary gases. Some inflammatory diseases affect the respiratory system, either acutely or chronically.

-Chest pathologies

-Benign disorders of viral or microbial origin: the pathogenic agent spreads through the air and generally settles in the lungs (e.g. tuberculosis or bronchiolitis).

-Excessive reaction of the immune system: pollen allergy.

-Intense inflammation of the bronchi and bronchioles.

-Asthma: this has various causes: infection, allergens, harmful substances, etc.

 

The anti-inflammatory essential oils for the respiratory system are:

to combat colds, bronchitis and pollen allergies

to assist in: clearing blocked noses, respiratory tract infections

Soothes asthma, blocked noses and respiratory tract infections.

red heart illustration

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY EO FOR PROBLEMS WITH BLOOD CIRCULATION

The circulatory system consists of the heart and the body’s blood and lymph vessels. These organs are responsible for transporting blood to all the body’s organs. A variety of disorders can lead to inflammation of the bloodstream:

– diseases affecting blood flow

– malfunctioning of the heart, such as irregular rhythms, malformations of the aorta, etc.

-problems directly affecting the arteries: varicose veins (abnormal dilation) or constriction, such as Raynaud’s disease.

– angina pectoris

 

The anti-inflammatory essential oils for problems with blood circulation are:

for: relieve congestion in the veins (varicose veins, haemorrhoids or rosacea).

to: regulate blood circulation.

For: vasodilatation problems (haemorrhoids, varicose veins, heavy legs)

  • Ylang-ylang complete EO (contains monoterpene alcohols and carbides).

to: regulate heart rate and blood pressure

for: haemorrhoids, varicose veins

blue stomach illustration

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY EO FOR PROBLEMS WITH THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM

The human digestive system comprises 19 organs, from the tongue to the large intestine. The digestive system is a complex system, which means that it is exposed to a wide range of disorders and illnesses. Most are benign, such as diarrhoea.

The type of digestive disease varies according to the part affected, and there are many causes of inflammation:

– weakening of the stomach lining: gastroenteritis or gastritis

– harmful organisms attack the cells of the organ directly: colitis or pancolitis, inflammation of the colon.

– inflammation of the dental pulp (all the nerves and vessels around the tooth): toothache (the teeth are part of the digestive tract)

– inflammation of the pharynx: angina

 

The anti-inflammatory essential oils for problems with the digestive system are:

against viral or bacterial infections, sore throats and dry mouth, particularly of the ENT system.

Against gastro-enteritis, indigestion, etc.

for: gastro-enteritis, indigestion and gastritis and diarrhoea.

  • Lemon EO (contains limonene, beta pinene et citrals)

for indigestion.

against stomach cramps, gastritis but mostly to treat oral and dental disorders

  • Ginger (contains sesquiterpenes)

against constipation

for digestion.

  • Lavander EO (contains linalol, and terpinene-4-ol)

against toothache

Against gastritis and other inflammations requiring a natural anaesthetic

orange muscle illustration

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY EO FOR PROBLEMS WITH BONES, JOINTS AND MUSCLES

Bones are the elements of the skeleton that support the body. The bones are joined together by joints. The role of the muscles is to enable this whole to move in a coordinated and balanced way. As with other organs, bones, joints and muscles can become inflamed:

– In the case of bones, the inflammation affects either the marrow or the bone tissue itself. Osteitis is the most common bone disease. It occurs as a result of bacterial infection.

– joints: when movement causes intense pain. Arthritis results from a bacterium choosing to develop on the joint and can lead to a chronic condition (osteoarthritis). Sometimes the infection spreads to several joints (polyarthritis or polyarthrosis).

– Muscles: damage to muscle connective tissue (dystrophy). This disorder is actually caused by a lack of nutrients or a genetic problem

 

The most well known anti-inflammatory essential oils for problems with the bones, joints and muscles are:

against rheumatism, arthritis and arthrosis

against rheumatism, varicose veins and heavy legs

soothes aches and pains, tendonitis, muscular pain, cramps and contractions.

for all types of rheumatic disease such as tendonitis, osteoarthritis, strains, etc …

 

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY ESSENTIAL OILS FOR WINTER ILLNESSES

A good number of viruses only really become active during winter, when the environment becomes more favourable to their development thanks to the weakening of our immune system.

There are around ten types of winter illness, all of which are infectious in origin. They fall into two categories:

 Diseases affecting the respiratory tract. The pathogen contaminates the mucous membrane of the nose (colds), bronchial tubes, pharynx and trachea, causing inflammation that can be difficult to tolerate.

 digestive diseases that affect the organs of the digestive system, such as gastroenteritis. However, most of these remain benign, like seasonal flu.

 

Inflammatory connections such as winter frostbite. These mainly affect the extremities of the body (ears, fingers or toes) and cause very painful burns. The cold causes the affected parts of the body to swell and turn red. This is due to a reduction in the calibre of the blood vessels, reducing the amount of blood flowing to them. Eventually they cool down.

 

The anti-inflammatory essential oils for winter illnesses are:

  • Ravintsara EO (contains 1,8-cineole, monoterpene alcohol and alpha-pinene).

For the treatment of bronchitis, otitis, nasopharyngitis, influenza, hay fever, bronchitis and various viral infections of the respiratory tract such as rhinitis.

against colds, bronchitis, sinusitis, allergies and dry coughs

against angina.

For blood circulation (contains aspirin)

Against colds, flu, blocked noses, headaches and other respiratory ailments.

  • Niaouli EO (contains sesquiterpene carbures and 1,8-cineole)

anti sinusitis, coughs, viral infections, otitis, bronchitis and colds.

against bronchitis and other respiratory infections.

soothes laryngitis, sore throat, sinusitis and bronchitis

against dry cough and loss of voice.

blue stomach illustration

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY EO LINKED TO INTIMATE DISORDERS

Most intimate problems are linked to vaginal flora and therefore particularly affect women, whose irritation and itching can be explained by a number of factors:

 

  • hypersensitivity of the skin to a particular fabric or product. For example: a sanitary towel.
  • mycoses or parasitic fungi. These multiply to abnormal proportions on the vaginal flora and create an imbalance.
  • Menstruation is also a source of burning and pain when it occurs at the same time as a uterine infection.
  • Sexually transmitted infections or diseases are among the most serious causes of inflammation, particularly in men
  • a dermatosis: eczema (skin rash) or psoriasis (appearance of red patches on the epidermis).

 

The anti-inflammatory essential oils for soothing intimate disorders are:

Against the proliferation of mycosis and genital infections

against mycosis and skin inflammation in the genital area

  • Ylang-ylang complete EO (contains monoterpene alcohols and carbures)

anti menstrual pain

for sexual appetite

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DAIRY PRODUCTS

All yogurts (animal or plant-based) can be flavored with essential oils. In an unsweetened yogurt, add a spoonful of honey in which you’ll dilute the essential oil of your choice. For a classic flavor, add two drops of citrus essential oils. For an exotic yogurt, add a drop of Ylang Ylang essential oil. This also works for whipped cream!

EDIBLE OILS

Flavor your olive oil: for 1 liter of edible oil, add 15 drops of rosemary or basil essential oil (or 8 drops of each) to one liter of cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil. Shake well to mix the different oils and let it rest for about a day before using it to season salads, pasta, vegetables, fish fillets, and more.

ICE CUBES!

Add 1 or 2 drops of essential oil to half a spoonful of honey, agave syrup, or mashed fruit, mix it into an ice cube tray, cover with water, and freeze!

Here are some quick ideas to get started

 

  • In the case of a cake, chocolate mousse, or pancakes: add essential oils directly to the batter, which is sweet and rich in fats.
  • For syrup to drizzle over your cakes after baking, or for your ice creams: mix 250g of sugar syrup with about 4 drops of citrus essence (4 drops of one citrus or 1 drop of 4 different citruses, for example).
  • Jams, marmalades, or honey: add a few drops of essential oils (e.g., lavender, thyme, or citrus essences).
  • Season a pasta dish: add 4 drops of Clary Sage essential oil to a 400g pasta dish.
  • Flavor rice: add one drop of Lemongrass essential oil to 400g of rice.
  • Enhance an apple crumble with cinnamon essential oil

The essential oils most commonly used in cooking:

 

Herbs

 

EO

Taste

Usage

Le+ santé

 

 

Garlic

Allium sativum

Odeur forte difficile à utiliser

.aïoli or garlic butter

. enhance the flavor of your sauces (tomato, dressing)

vermifuge

natural antibiotic

helps lower bad cholesterol and reduce blood sugar levels 

Difficult to digest

dermocaustic

 

Dill

Anethum graveolens

Slightly  anised and fresh 

cream-based sauces to season fish, especially salmon

vegetables (potato, zucchini)

salads (cucumber)

 

Stimulates digestive secretions and the gallbladder

Risk of nephrotoxicity after prolonged and high dose ingestion

 

Basil

Ocimum basilicum

The essential oil of Basil has a stronger taste than the aromatic herb we know:

fruit desserts

poultry (chicken)

fish (calamari)

sauces (tomato, garlic)

pasta (garlic-olive oil, tomato)

vegetables (tomato, zucchini, coco beans)

olive oils

 

Relieves all intestinal and gastric problems Recommended for flatulence, bloating, and abdominal pain

 

 

Java citronella

Cymbopogon winterianus

Acidic and lemony flavour

 

Indian or Asian-inspired dishes

marinades, sauces (coconut milk)

 

 

 

 

Coriander (seeds)

Coriandrum sativum

Earthy and slightly camphorated fragrance

savory dishes (such as hummus)

Asian and Mexican cuisine

soups (pumpkin, carrot)

sauces (tomato, béchamel, coconut milk)

rice

 

Aid for various digestive issues, bloating, and stomach-aches

 

 

Tarragon

Artemesia dracunculus

Light note

gratins, seasoning oils, and sauces (béarnaise, sour cream)

vegetable dips

meats (rabbit, beef)

 

Effective against colitis and intestinal spasms

Not recommended for use with anticoagulant treatments or coagulation disorders

 

Sweet Fennel

Fresh taste

 

gaspacho, tomato tart, fougasse, salads

Against flatulences and indigestions

 

 

Bay Laurel

Laurus nobilis

Sweet, bitter and fresh flavor

stews

vegetables or fresh cheese

meats (game, pork, pâté, terrine)

fish (tuna, sardine)

sauces (béchamel, tomato)

vegetables (potato, tomato)

 

 

Pairs well with thyme

 

Marjoram 

Origanum majorana

 

Sunny vegetables: tomatoes, eggplants, bell peppers… In savory tarts or pizzas

Recommended for hypertensive individuals

Closely related to oregano with a finer flavor

 

Cornmint

Mentha arvensis

Milder flavor than Peppermint

 

Hepato-digestive stimulant

Very potent taste; a single drop is sufficient to season your dishes and drinks

Peppermint 

Mentha piperita

 

Ideal for salads (cucumbers), cold soups (peas), fresh cheeses, mixed with chocolate, or in your drinks Ideal for salads (cucumbers), cold soups (peas), fresh cheeses, mixed with chocolate, or in your drinks

Facilitate digestion

 

Spearmint

Mentha spicata

An even milder flavor than Peppermint or Field Mint

Tabbouleh

Moroccan tea

 

If you like the scent and taste of fresh mint, we recommend using this essential oil in your dishes instead.

Rosemary Cineole or Verbenon

Rosemarinus officinalis

 

Meats, fish, soups Poultry (chicken, turkey) Vegetables (zucchini, garlic) Sauces

Verbenon variety: detoxifying and liver protection

Pairs well with Bay Laurel and Thyme

 

Savory (Winter)

Satureja montana

Spicy, phenolic flavour

Pizzas, saucy dishes, mefrenats

Stimulates natural defenses

 

 

Clary Sage

Clary sage

herbaceous

pasta, broths and soups

 

Pairs well with Rosemary or Bay laurel

 

Thyme Linalol

Thyumus vulgaris

Very strong taste, best used in cooked dishes

Marinades, sauces (tomato), vinaigrettes, and vegetable preparations

 

 

 

Thyme  Thujanol

Lighter taste than Thyme Linalool

meat, fish, sauces

 

 

 

 

Flowers– Fruits 

 

EO

Taste

Usage

The  +

 

Bergamot

Citrus bergamis

Tangy and sweet flavour

 

Poultry (chicken breast)

Fish (carpaccio, en papillote)

Marinades

Sauces (olive oil)

Pastries (cake, shortbread, madeleine)

Fruit salads (citrus, banana)

Infusion (iced tea)

 

Aids digestion, prevents constipation and intestinal infections Appetite stimulant

 

Lemon

Citrus limonum

 

Desserts or beverages

Fish sauces

Cake or sorbet preparation

Flavoring plain yogurt

Meat (veal)

Poultry (hen, chicken breast)

Shellfish (scallops)

Braised dishes (tagine)

Marinades (alone or with thyme, basil, cloves)

 

Cleanses and stimulates the liver. It also eases digestion and helps reduce gas and bloating

Pairs well with mint / peppermint essential oil

Geranium Rosat

Pelargonium graveolens

Floral flavour

 

Jams

Red fruit desserts (crumbles, panna cotta, muffins, strawberries…)

Creams (crème brûlée, ice cream)

Fruit salads (kiwi), pairs well with red fruits, nectarines (peach)

 

Appetite suppressant to regulate blood sugar

 

Lavender

Lavandula angustifolia

Floral, herbal scent

 

Candy, shortbread, sorbets

In savory dishes, in flavored olive oil for salads

Jams (apricot)

Pastries (crème brûlée, ice cream)

 

calming

 

Green Mandarin

Citrus reticulata

 

Sweet and tangy flavour

 

Juices or cocktails

Pumpkin soups

Poultry (poultry breast)

Shellfish (scallops)

Fish (monkfish, whiting)

Pastries

 

Digestive tonic, against aerophagia Anti-inflammatory for the intestines Useful for heartburn, acidity

 

Orange (Sweet)

Citrus sinensis

Sweet and fruity

 

Chocolate desserts

Meat (beef, pork)

Poultry (duck, guinea fowl)

Fish (white fish)

Soups (carrot)

Sauces (olive oil, mayonnaise)

Pastries (cake, madeleine, cheesecake)

Creams (crème brûlée)

Fruit salads (with cinnamon)

 

Bitter tonic, against stomach spasms

Pairs well with  Cardamom or cinnamon

Petit Grain Bigarade 

Citrus aurantium

Fruity, with a flavor close to orange blossom

Fruity preparations (crumble, jam).

Pastries (cake, shortbread, madeleine, crepe)

Creams (custard, crème brûlée, flan caramel)

Fruit salads

Infusions

Pairs well with citrus fruits (orange), honey, nectarines (peach)

 

Difficult digestion, bloating, digestive spasms, stomachaches

 

in eggnog for better sleep:

1 drop with 1 egg yolk, 1 teaspoon of honey and 25 ml milk to drink at bedtime

 

Grapefruit

Citrus paradisi

Tangy and sweet

Avocado salads and desserts galore: tarts, syrups, shortbread, or sorbets

 

Suppresses appetite Difficult digestion

 

Lemon Verbena 

Lippia citriodora

Lemon scented

 

Dairy products, pies, fruit salads, smoothies, or infusions

Fish (monkfish, sea bass)

Shellfish (oyster)

Fruit compote (peach, pear)

Desserts (ice cream, parfait, panna cotta, custard, crème brûlée)

Pastries (madeleine, shortbread, cake)

Infusion

 

Internal worms

 

Ylang Ylang Complete

 

Pronounced floral scent

Chocolate and apples

 

 

 

Spices

 

EO

Taste

Usage

The +

 

Cinnamon (bark)

Cinnamomum verum

Warm and sweet flavor

All desserts: fruits in all forms, cakes, compotes…

Braised dishes (tagine, curry)

 

vermifuge and helps combat digestive disorders, gastric pain, urinary or intestinal infections.

Increases appetite.

Very potent oil that should not be used undiluted

Cardamom

Elettaria cardamomum

Spicy favour

Savory dishes or fruity desserts (orange, peach).

Ideal in coffee or black tea

Carrot salad

Basmati rice

 

Aids in the prevention of aerophagia

 

Clove bud

Syzygium aromaticum

 

Curry dishes

Apple desserts

Breath freshener

 

Turmeric

Curcuma longa

Savory and discreet flavo

 

Mayonnaise, rice, potatoes, or fish

 

Vermifuge

Bloating, colitis, difficult digestion

 

Ginger 

Zingiber officinale

Spicy and lemony flavor

Soups, gingerbread, shortbread, rhubarb pies

 

Useful in case of constipation, nausea

 

Black Pepper 

Piper nigrum

Spicy, hot, woody

 

for seasoning meats, poultry, sauces, and vegetables (mashed potatoes, mushrooms)

Bloating, hepatic-pancreatic insufficiency, difficult digestion, lack of appetite.

 

 

Pink Pepper

Schinus molle

Peppery, hot, spicy

 

Meats (beef carpaccio)

Poultry (duck)

Fish (salmon)

Shellfish (oyster)

Fruits (apple)”

Top of Form

 

Digestive disorders, intoxication, intestinal infections

 

Digestive and Purifying Essential Oils:

  • Dill, Celery, Cumin, Fennel, Basil, Lemon, Tarragon, Mint

 

Tonic and Antibacterial Essential Oils:

  • Ceylon Cinnamon (bark), Ginger, Mint, Thyme (linalool chemotype), Lemongrass, Turmeric, Clove, Savory

 

Soothing and Mild Essential Oils:

  • Cardamom, Lavender, Sweet Orange, Lemon Verbena, Lemon, Mandarin, Bitter Orange Petitgrain, Vanilla (resinoid), Ylang-Ylang

 

 

Precautions When Using Essential Oils

First and foremost, several essential oils are toxic and should not be ingested. While essential oils like lemon or coriander can be used, it’s essential to steer clear of curly parsley oil, which is highly toxic.

Therefore, it is crucial to research each oil before adding them to your recipes. Ingesting toxic essential oils can lead to symptoms ranging from mild irritation of the mouth’s mucous membranes to nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. Some essential oils can even cause seizures or respiratory problems.

 

At-Risk Individuals

  • Prohibited for pregnant women in the first 3 months of pregnancy, as well as infants under 3 months.
  • Pregnant women beyond 3 months and those who are breastfeeding should exercise caution in both aromatic cooking and aromatherapy. Some oils are contraindicated for them.
  • Keep essential oils out of the reach of children.

 

Essential oils can trigger allergic reactions.

 

USAGE PRECAUTIONS

 

  • Only use 100% pure, 100% natural, and chemotyped essential oils, preferably certified as organic. This ensures a high-quality product with a known chemical composition and free from pesticides.

 

  • Avoid using essential oils in baby food (up to 3 years old): firstly, some essential oils may be contraindicated for young children, and secondly, babies already have a wide range of flavors to discover!

 

  • For children under 6 years old, their palates are still developing a taste for “classic” flavors. They may not appreciate the unique aromas of aromatic cooking. It’s better to introduce them gradually starting from the age of 6, beginning with familiar flavors like citrus, for example.

 

  • Never swallow essential oils undiluted or even on a sugar cube because they are highly concentrated.

 

  • Always dilute essential oils in a fatty and/or sweet substance: honey, oil, cereal syrup, cake batter, etc. Water, broth, or milk is not sufficient; a syrupy or fatty substance is required. Dosage must be precise to the drop!

 

Sometimes, one drop too many can render the preparation inedible. So, respect some basic rules:

  • Never incorporate the oil directly into the dish with the dropper, as an accidental drop can easily happen.
  • Always dilute the drop(s) in a spoonful of fatty or syrupy substance before adding it to the preparation.
  • Follow the number of drops indicated in the recipe or, if in doubt, stick to 1 drop per dish.

Indulge in bliss