From my June 2, 2011 newsletter to friends and clients:
I was sidetracked this morning with questions from a couple of friends traveling to Europe about how they could protect themselves from the e-coli outbreak. I shared a couple of ideas with them and thought that others might find them useful as well.
My suggestions are based on what we know about general antibiotic properties of therapeutic-grade essential oils. The oils I work with have been tested against a number of bacterial strains, with positive results. They may or may not have been tested against this particular strain, which seems to be particularly deadly.
So don't take my recommendations and place yourself in harm's way thinking that you've got the magic bullet. However, if you use common sense along with a couple of essential oils that have been shown to be potent general antibiotics, you may increase your chances of staying healthy and traveling safely.
1. Wash Your Hands, Get Enough Sleep, and Keep the Stress at Bay
First - the basics. Wash your hands. Also wash the fruits and vegetables that you eat on your trip.
Also: do what you can to boost your immune system. Our immune systems are actually designed to deal with pathological agents pretty effectively on their own - but not if they are weakened.
Stress suppresses our immune system on the physiological level. So does lack of sleep. So keep at least those two factors in check, and you'll go a long way toward staying healthy.
2. Essential Oils as Nature's General Antibiotics
This is a quick recap for those of you who haven't heard me talk about this before. If you know this stuff, scroll down to the part with specific suggestions.
Essential oils have been used against bacteria (as well as viruses) for thousands of years. Today we know that essential oils may actually in many ways be more potent than synthetic antibiotics.
One reason is their complex chemistry. Synthetic antibiotics have specific chemical makeup, which means that every pill of a particular antibiotic is identical to the next. (The so-called "pharmacological purity" principle.) This has many pluses, but it also makes it easy for bacteria to recognize the structure and adapt to it.
Because essential oils come from plants, their chemical make-up is significantly more complex. It takes tons and tons of plant material to produce a bottle of an essential oil. And just as no individual plant is exactly the same as the next, no bottle of essential oil is exactly the same. This makes for unpredictable and pretty much endless variations in their structure. This complexity makes it hard for bacteria to adapt to.
In addition, synthetic antibiotics are manufactured to target specific strains of bacteria. If conventional medicine does not have an antibiotic for a specific bacteria, there is not much it can do. Essential oils, on the other hand, because of their complex structure, can be effective against multiple strains of bacteria. They are nature's general antibiotics.
Finally, unlike synthetic antibiotics, essential oils target "bad" bacteria and leave the "good" ones alone. By doing that, they generally support our immune system, rather than weakening it further, as is the case with synthetic antibiotics.
There are multiple studies that demonstrate essential oils' antibacterial effectiveness. For example, essential oils of lemongrass and a blend of Young Lving eucalyptus oils known as RC have been shown in studies to kill antibiotic resistant bacteria MRSA (the so-called "superbug") and a strain of e-coli within 2 minutes.
3. What I Would Do If I Were Traveling to Europe
I would get the following:
- RC - the Young Living Eucalyptus blend I mentioned above
- Lemongrass - see above
- Thieves oil blend - a general antibiotic blend, which is also has lots of other properties. (See here for more info.)
- Inner Defense capsules
- Travel Diffuser
Here's how you can use them:
- Rub RC and Thieves and a couple drops of Lemongrass, into your feet before going to bed (use all three together or alternate on different nights).
- Add Thieves to your drinking water any time you drink anything during the trip.
- Rub any of the three oils (or all of them) on your chest and neck (under the jaw) a few times throughout the day.
- Take 2 Inner Defense caps per day. Inner Defense is basically Thieves in an enteric capsule, which means that it opens up in your intestines rather than your stomach, so the oils go where they need to without being affected by stomach acids. The normal recommendation to keep your immune system strong is to take 1 per day. In this case, I would take 2 caps per day to be on the safe side.
- Use the Travel Diffuser to diffuse the oils in your hotel room to clear the air and cut off one more possible route for infection.
As always, this holds true only for the particular brand of oils I work with. Not all oils out on the market can be taken internally, and not all can be used safely on the skin. Young Living conducts extensive research on its oils. Exercise caution if working with other brands.
4. June Promotions and Classes
This month Young Living is running a promotion that is especially great for supporting your immune system.
During June, when you order of 180 PV or more (approximately $180), you will receive a 1-liter bottle of NingXia Red and a 15-ml Peppermint essential oil for free - a retail value of $78.29.
NingXia Red is a powerful supporter for your immune system. Check out this link for more information. Trust me, this stuff really works.
5. June Aromatherapy Classes
Finally, for those of you who'd like to learn more about essential oils and how they can be used to support your health and wellness, here are some upcoming opportunities:
Aromatherapy for Everyday Health and Wellness at The Mindfulness Center in Bethesda on June 18. See here for more details and to register. Sign up soon - we are offering it in a smaller room and space is short.
Essential Oils Summer Party! at Soul Source in Derwood, MD on Friday, June 10! This will be really fun - and FREE!
I hope this helps. As always, do not hesitate to contact me with any questions you may have.
Here's to your best, most radiant health!