Even though I've been using essential oils for ages I have to admit that I am often still in awe of how wonderfully they work in so many situations. I have never met a person who doesn't like lemon essential oil -- you may be out there somewhere but I haven't met you yet -- and lemongrass now that's a different story but I digress.
Lemon (Citrus limon) is sunny, uplifting, and of course citrusy. I use it in blends for many reasons -- because it smells good, it supports the immune system, it has analgesic, and anti-inflammatory properties, it supports the liver, fights germs, is a skin penetration enhancer, and can have diuretic effects. It's great for cleaning and diffusing and as long as you stay under 12 drops per ounce can also be used topically. Above that lemon can be phototoxic. Additionally if lemon essential oil is oxidized it can be sensitizing to the skin. So be sure to keep oils capped tightly, cool, and away from light. It is NOT an oil you'd typically want to use in the bath but it works well in therapeutic creams or soaps.
As I mentioned lemon essential oil is great for cleaning. One use I love is it helps remove sticky residue from glasses or clothes. My daughter wanted to repurpose a very cool glass bottle. First task was to remove the original label. She asked if we had any goo gone and I suggested using lemon essential oil instead. I personally highly dislike the chemical smell of goo removing stuff -- ugh! And from past experience I found that lemon essential oil worked well to remove sticky residue.
To clean, create a paste of equal parts baking soda and carrier oil (such as fractionated coconut, almond, or vegetable oil), and 2-3 drops of lemon essential oil per ounce (about two tablespoons) of the oil/baking soda mixture.
I've got to clean bathrooms today and we have hard water and build up. I'll be making a spray using a cup of very warm water, 1/4 c of borax, and 5 drops of lemon essential oil. Add to a spray bottle for a refreshing cleaner.
So while I clean I'm boosting my immune system, my mood, fighting germs, and even supporting my liver health and getting my bathrooms clean and smelling fresh.
Using essential oils in cleaning products reduces your toxic load and also supports the body and spirit. Win-win! And many people find when they reduce their toxic load by using essential oils in their cleaning can be beneficial for those with allergies who are sensitive to fragrances and chemicals.
I also used lemon this week to create a roll on for a friend. Sometimes I feel like I need to make a certain blend for a person and I do. This one featured equal parts lemon, juniper berry, and lavender. It's a blend that is uplifting and supports immune health. Energetically lemon is said to invite happy energy, while juniper cleanses, protects, and releases worry. Lavender is a great tonic to the body and soothing to the mind and spirit.
Lemon and d-limonene, the major aromatic component in lemon essential oil has also been the subject of anti tumor studies. In cancers of the breast, liver, pancreas and stomach, rodent studies showed antitumoral action. The studies suggest the effects are mainly due to the metabolites of limonene. Does this mean you should add lemon essential oil to your water? NO. Instead try adding a squeeze and large slice/half of lemon for the greatest benefit. Including lemon, along with other citrus fruits and a diet high in fruits and vegetables appears to help your body do it's job in fighting tumors and rouge cells. Diffusing and cleaning with lemon essential oil as well as using it topically may also be beneficial. (1,2,3,4)
So lemon, so simple and inviting and can support the body in many ways. Ok time to make my lemon cleaner and get the bathrooms done.
Sticky Residue Cleaner:
2 T baking soda
2 T Oil (almond, fractionated coconut, olive etc)
4 drops lemon (Citrus limon) essential oil
Add to a glass bowl or measuring cup and and mix to make a paste. Apply to sticky area and let it sit for a minute or two. Use a towel or cloth to remove residue. Repeat if needed.
Soap Scum Cleaner:
One cup very warm water
1/4 c borax
5 drops of lemon (Citrus limon) essential oil
Combine ingredients and shake. Spray onto desired area and gently scrub to clean. Repeat as needed.
Positive Energy Blend:
30 mls or one ounce carrier oil (I like organic jojoba)
4 drop lemon (Citrus limon)
4 drop juniper berry (Juniperus communis)
4 drop lavender (Lavandula angustafolia)
Combine carrier and essential oils in a glass bottle and mix to combine. Add 10 mls to roller bottle. Roll onto wrists or temples as needed for uplifting and support.
Haag JD Lindstrom MJ, Gould MN (1992) Limonene-induced regression of mammary carcinomas. Cancer Research 52:4021-4026
Kaji I, Tatsuta M, Iishi H et al (2001) Inhibition by d-limonene of experimental hepatocarcinogenesis in Sprague-Dawley rats does not involve p21(ras) plasma membrane association. International Journal of Cancer 93:441-444
Lu XG, Zhan LB, Feng BA et al (2004) Inhibition of growth and metastasis of human gastric cancer implanted in nude mice by d-limonene. World Journal of Gastroenterology 10:2140-2144
Uedo N, Tatsuta M, Iishi H et al (1999) Inhibition by d-limonene of gastric carcinogenesis induced by N-methyl-N'-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine in Wistar rats. Cancer Letters 137:131-136