Lavender oil is an essential oil derived from the lavender plant. It is one of the most popular and versatile essential oils used in aromatherapy. The simple truth is that it has been used and cherished for centuries because of its amazing aroma and many therapeutic benefits.
Lavender oil has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to heal minor burns, bug bites, and other skin problems like eczema. The calming scent of lavender can help reduce anxiety and calm the mind. What’s more, studies have shown that it may be beneficial in treating insomnia, alopecia (hair loss), depression, headaches, and other conditions.
Health Benefits of Lavender Oil
Here are the top benefits of lavender oil.
1. Lavender oil contains anti-inflammatory substances
Lavender oil is packed with antioxidants that help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals. This may be the major reason for lavender oil’s health benefits. Interestingly, many experts suggest the oil’s main anti-inflammatory effects can help protect you from premature aging, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and arthritis.
3. Improves Mood and Reduces Stress
Lavender oil has been found to have a calming effect on mood, stress, anxiety, and depression. One study found that inhaling lavender essential oil reduced anxiety levels significantly more than a placebo did.
4. Supports Better Sleep
The calming effects of lavender essential oil can help you get better sleep at night, especially if you suffer from insomnia or other sleep disorders like restless leg syndrome. Studies say that lavender oil has sedative effects and may slow down the activity of your nervous system, thereby helping you to relax and fall asleep faster.
5. Relieves pain
Because of its pain-relieving properties, lavender essential oil is often used in massage therapy to help relieve headaches, muscle aches, joint pain, and low back pain. Thanks to its antispasmodic properties, lavender oil may also reduce cramps and menstrual pain.
6. May Helps Treat Diabetes
Both animal and human studies have shown that lavender oil may be beneficial in controlling blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.
7. Treats acne and other skin issues
Lavender oil has antiseptic, antifungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. This makes it a great remedy for treating minor skin issues such as acne, eczema, psoriasis, wounds, burns, and even insect bites. When applied directly to the affected area, lavender oil can help reduce redness and inflammation.
8. Supports Brain Function
Aromatherapy with lavender oil may help improve cognitive function, including memory and focus, according to some studies.
9. Has Antibacterial Properties
Lavender oil contains several compounds with antibacterial effects, including linalool, eucalyptol, and geraniol. These compounds can help fight bacteria that cause infections, such as E. coli and Staphylococcus aureus.
How do you use lavender oil?
Lavender oil can be used in aromatherapy, topically on the skin, and even in cooking. To use lavender oil for aromatherapy, rub 2 or 3 drops of lavender oil in your cupped palms and take deep inhalations to draw the scent into your amygdala gland, the emotional center of the brain.
Alternatively, add a few drops of lavender essential oil to your bath or put it in a diffuser. You can also mix lavender oil with a carrier oil such as coconut or jojoba and massage it into your skin for its calming effects.
Finally, add 1-2 drops of lavender oil to your favorite recipes for a subtle, floral flavor.
Use lavender oil for a DIY foot soak
Just add a few drops of lavender oil into warm water and soak your feet for 15-20 minutes. This will help reduce inflammation, relieve muscle pain and tension, and promote relaxation.
The Bottom Line
Lavender oil is a powerful essential oil with many beneficial health effects. It can be used in aromatherapy to improve mood and reduce stress, as well as topically on the skin to treat minor skin conditions and wounds. In addition, it may help reduce blood sugar levels and support brain function. Before using a lavender essential oil, you should always talk to your doctor first.