ingredient spotlight: essential oils
essentially, not all oils are the same
This month's ingredient spotlight is a complicated one - as all essential oils are not made the same. At I Love Juice Bar, we exclusively use dōTERRA Essential Oils in our Essential Oil Shots. But even if you're purchasing the highest-quality essential oils, you should know that not all oils are safe for consumption. The good news is there are many benefits to be gained from all kinds of uses with essential oils. So stay with us on this blog as we not only speak about the benefits of consuming essential oils, but the other amazing benefits including aromatic and topical uses.
Let's start with the tasty part - consumption!
Essential oils have long been part of our culinary history. In fact, every time you add fresh herbs and spices to a dish, you're actually consuming small amounts of the volatile essential oil compounds. The compounds of essential oils are highly complex and possess a set of biochemical properties unique to their plant source. This combination creates aromas and flavors that can be quite tasty when added to foods. But, essential oils provide more than just flavor and aroma. When bottled in their concentrated form, these essential oils can also be used as dietary supplements to target specific health benefits and treatments. But let us stress this one more time - only when you're using high-quality essential oils that are safe for internal use.
So how do you use essential oils internally? The key is to start small and not overdo it. Some oils are incredibly potent, so just a drop or two may be all you need.
Here's a few tips on how you can use essential oils internally:
- Always start with oils from reputable sources that state they safe for internal use.
- Replace dried herbs or spices in recipes with essential oils when baking or cooking.
- Start with small amounts, as essential oils are much more potent than dried herbs and spices.
- For the really strong oils, instead of adding by drops, dip a clean toothpick into the oil and swirl it into the food or drink.
- Add essential oils to water, smoothies, milk, tea, or other drinks.
- Take essential oils internally by adding to a small amount of applesauce or yogurt.
- And, of course, you can swing by your local I Love Juice Bar for any of our essential oil shots!
essential oils on our menu
We use six different essential oils in our four essential oil shots and monster shots; peppermint, lavender, lemon and wild orange are plant oils and On Guard® and Slim & Sassy®, two proprietary blends from dōTERRA. Each of our four essential oil shots is created for specific health benefits and goals.*
ENERGIZER: Need a quick pick-me-up? This shot is comprised of just three ingredients; coconut water, peppermint oil and wild orange oil.
ALLERGY SHOT: The combination of lavender, lemon and peppermint oils are enhanced by bee pollen and mixed with fresh pineapple juice to provide a quick fix for allergy symptoms.
SLIM & SASSY: Get a quick boost to the metabolism and curb your appetite with this blend of fresh pineapple juice and dōTERRA's Slim & Sassy® blend.
SNIFFLE STOPPER: This shot does triple-duty with immune boosting, protection against environmental threats and boosting cardiovascular health with dōTERRA's On Guard®, cayenne, fresh ginger and lemon.
Additionally, our SCORPION™, LOVE HORNET™ and DRAGON BREATH™ Monster Shots all contain essential oils as well.
now, let's talk about topical uses
Applying essential oils directly to your skin can be a great way to treat problem areas, as essential oils have low molecular weights and are lipid soluble so they easily penetrate the skin. And once they soak in, they stay in the area to treat the symptoms. But like with internal use, not all essential oils are for topical use, as the concentration of some may irritate the skin. We suggest purchasing your oils from a source like dōTERRA, as they clearly mark what uses an oil is approved for. Additionally, it's best to test an area by first diluting the essential oil in a carrier such as coconut oil with a 1:4 ratio (one drop essential oil, four drops of carrier oil) before applying pure oils directly to your skin.
Here's our favorite topical uses of essential oils:
- a few drops of peppermint oil to the back of the neck can help cool you down (and ease hot flashes!)
- lavender oil can help ease stress and headaches when applied to the temples
- apply lavender oil to the bottom of feet for a sleepless child
- rub peppermint oil on your temples to aid in focus and clarity
- combine a few drops of dōTERRA's On Guard® oil with coconut oil for a natural hand cleanser
- add a few drops of essential oils to a warm bath
What to be aware of with topical application:
- avoid using essential oils around tender skin, such as around the eyes or inner ears
- avoid applying essential oils to broken or irritated skin
- always test essential oils by first diluting one drop of essential oil to four drops of a carrier oil (such as fractionated coconut oil)
what's that smell?
Yup, the most common use of essential oils is for aromatic uses. We're sure you've seen these aroma diffusers popping up all over Amazon and in your local home stores. Well, it's for good reason.
Studies have shown that the sense of smell can trigger very powerful mental, emotional and even physiological responses. But we're not talking about your grandmother's perfume here... You see, essential oils are quickly absorbed directly into your smell receptors, which have a direct pathway to the limbic system through your olfactory nerve. What's the limbic system you ask? It's the part of the brain that supports many of your most important body functions like behavior, emotions and memory. Yeah, that limbic system.
The uses of essential oils for aromatic treatments can trigger both invigorating and calming effects, depending on the oil or combination of oils you use. Check out our guide for the properties of some of our favorite essential oils below.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.