Inula (Inula graveolens) is an essential oil new to me and it made a lovely first impression. The genus Inula contains about 90 species of flowering plants in the family Asteraceae native to Europe, Asia, and Africa. They may be annuals, perennials, or small shrubs that vary greatly in size. Some species are a few centimeters while others can grow to be over 10 feet tall. They carry daisy like flowers.
Inula essential oil is derived from Inula graveolens and typically has a significant amount of the ester bornyl acetate and monoterpenol borneol. It has a blue-green color reminiscent of German chamomile but does not contain chamazulene and is useful for respiratory support and soothing aches.
Bornyl acetate, like many esters, has been shown to be anti-inflammatory 1,2, analgesic 1,2, sedative 3, and a CNS depressant 4.
Borneol has been shown to have anti-bacterial 5, anti-fungal 6, anti-viral 7, and anti-spasmodic 8 properties in addition to being anti-inflammatory 9 and sedative 10.
The combined properties of these aromatic compounds (along with additional smaller amounts of others) contribute to Inula's therapeutic properties.
Inula is suggested for helping maintain healthy lung fluids and for it's relaxing and calming effects and ability to quiet the mind. It may help ease aches. It is reputed to ease bronchial spasms and reduce mucus and may be useful for helping with respiratory infection.
Energetically Inula is said to promote a positive sense of self and provide a nurturing maternal like quality.
For respiratory support, Inula would work well in an aroma inhaler or chest rub along with oils such as ravintsara, eucalyptus, rosalina, spike lavender, chamomile, spruce or fir oils. Inula can provide soothing anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, and analgesic suport as well.
Inula has also been used topically to ease joint, back, and muscle aches.
If you have questions about Inula or any other essential oil or would like to set up a consultation or attend a class
please contact Tricia.
1. Wu X, Li X, Xiao F et al (2004) [Studies on the analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect of bornyl acetate in volatile oil from Amomum villosum]. Zhong Yao Cai 27:438-439
2. Wu X, Xiao F, Zhang Z et al (2005) [Research on the analgesic effect and mechanism of bornyl acetate in volatile oil from Amomum villosum]. Zhong Yao Cai 28:505-507
3. Buchbauer G, Jager W, Jirovetz L et al (1992) [Effects of valerian root oil, borneol, isoborneol, bornyl acetate and isobornyl acetate on the motility of laboratory animals (mice) after inhalation]. Pharmazie 47:620-622
4. Tachikawa E, Takahashi M, Kashimoto T (2000) Effects of extract and ingredients isolated from Magnolia obovata thunberg on catecholamine secretion from bovine adrenal chromaffin cells. Biochemical Pharmacology 60:433-440
5. Kotan R, Kordali S, Cakir A (2007) Screening of antibacterial activities of twenty-one oxygenated monoterpenes. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung C. 62(7-8):507-513.
6. Santoyo S, Cavero S, Jaime L (2006) Supercritical carbon dioxide extraction of compounds with antimicrobial activity from Origanum vulgare L.: determination of optimal extraction parameters. Journal of Food Protection 69(2):369-375.
7. Armaka M, Papanikolaou E, Sivropoulou A et al (1999) Antiviral properties of isoborneol, a potent inhibitor of Herpes simplex virus type 1. Antiviral Research 43:79-92
8. Taddei I, Giachetti D, Taddei E et al (1988) Spasmolytic activity of peppermint, sage and rosemary essences and their major constituents. Fitoterapia 59:463-468
9. Juhás S, Cikos S, Czikková S (2008) Effects of borneol and thymoquinone on TNBS-induced colitis in mice. Folia Biologica 54(1):1-7.
10. Buchbauer G, Jäger W, Jirovetz L (1992) [Effects of valerian root oil, borneol, isoborneol, bornyl acetate and isobornyl acetate on the motility of laboratory animals (mice) after inhalation]. Pharmazie. 47(8):620-622.