I was with a client recently and when she smelled clove bud essential oil she said it reminded her of ham! I laughed but I knew where she was coming from. In our house Christmas ham is a favorite and it's either clove studded or finished with a clove brown sugar glaze.
This time of year the air is often filled with the aroma of cinnamon, clove, and ginger from our decorations, baked goods, and holiday meals. These spices smell delicious of course but they are also beneficial in many ways. We may not realize it while baking or cooking but these spices have long been treasured not only for their taste but also for their therapeutic benefits.
Cinnamon bark, cinnamon leaf, clove bud, and ginger are all essential oils useful in respiratory blends, to fight colds and germs, and for digestive support. These oils also stimulate circulation and are anti-inflammatory and analgesic.
Cinnamon bark and cinnamon leaf are excellent germ fighters and I've discussed them in a recent blog post. Cinnamon bark is also helpful for digestive issues and to stimulate appetite.
Clove bud is similar to cinnamon leaf in that it has a high eugenol content and is an excellent germ fighter. Like cinnamon it's a hot oil and must be diluted well. The recommended dermal limit is 0.5% -- that's 3 or fewer drops per ounce. Clove bud is warming, analgesic, and useful for reducing feelings of stress. Great for circulation and immune support too, just be careful to dilute well.
Ginger is also a great oil for digestion and helpful in germ fighting blends. It's also a warming oil great for circulation, muscle aches, and immune support. It's also wise to use this oil at low dilutions on the skin.
How to use: I enjoy diffusing a drop or two of spicy oils with orange or lemon and rosemary to create a germ fighting diffuser blend. I'll add a small amount of clove or ginger to massage blends to create warm and ease aches. To ease feelings of nausea, aid in digestion, or soothe digestive distress (perhaps from post holiday meals?) try adding a small amount of ginger or clove to a cream or oil and massage onto abdomen (remember you'll need to dilute 0.5% for clove and it's suggested you keep ginger at low dilution 1-2% as it may be irritating to those with sensitive skin).
So as winter draws near it's a perfect time to spice things up with your clove bud, cinnamon, and ginger essential oils.
Looking for a unique gift? We'll be unveiling our Purely Holiday aromatherapy gift set this week at Pure Silk in Old Town featuring handcrafted warm vanilla body butter, Rosemary & peppermint foaming sugar scrub and bath bomb. Or consider a gift certificate for an aromatherapy class or lesson or AromOx session.
And of course if you have any aromatherapy questions or questions about the essential oils mentioned in this or any other blog post contact Tricia.