Brief History of Hydrosols: When discussing hydrosols, many of my students don't realize that the distillate waters (hydrosols) predate essential oils by hundreds if not thousands of years. There is evidence of distillation as long as 5000 years ago. It is not clear whether they were distilling alcohol that early, though there is some evidence that the Chinese had spirits many, many hundreds of years ago. It is more likely these ancients were distilling for the herbal waters. One very old description is of a crude distillation that involved a pot of water filled with cedar and water with lamb's wool stretched over the top to catch the rising vapors. The wool was periodically wrung out and collected resulting in an early distillate water.
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Essential oils for acute bronchitis: I pride myself on having consistent robust health since I haven't had anything more serious than a pesky cold or tummy ache in over 10 years. I'm just never sick. I attribute this to working with essential oils every day, washing my hands frequently and generally being a pretty happy soul. Well, in mid-October, I fell hard. Out of the blue I began to ache in my joints and mostly everywhere, making me wonder if I'd been hit by a truck in my sleep. This fun was followed by three days with a fever of 102 which morphed into a cough the likes of which I've never known. My husband, James, insisted I see our family doc or he would bind my hands and feet and take me himself. I broke down and saw Dr. Sally, who took one listen to my lungs and said, "Woah, girl, you've got acute
Anointing and Love: Anointing with essential oils has been used in ritual and ceremony for thousands of years, with one of the most widely known rites being the art of perfuming as an attractant for love. While most everyone today is familiar with the use of perfume and cologne as a tool for attracting a mate, most people don't know that essential oils were the original form of perfume. The word perfume comes from the Latin phrase "per" meaning through, and "fumus" meaning smoke. The original form of perfume was actually incense and has been traced back over 4,000 years to the use by Mesopotamians, who used resins and woods to burn in their religious ceremonies. Often, they would soak the resins and woods in water and then anoint themselves by rubbing the fragrant water over their bodies.
Aromatherapy and Weight Control: The use of essential oils in aromatherapy can be effective in supporting the weight loss process. Every diet and weight loss book, website and guru tries to offer something new to the debate about how to lose weight. The weight-loss industry is a fast-growing, multi-billion dollar industry and shows no sign of slowing down. For decades there has been an assortment of outlandish and unhealthy fad diets circulating - the Cabbage Soup Diet, the Grapefruit Diet, the Brussels Sprouts Diet, even the Tape Worm Diet - but the fact remains that the most sensible way to lose weight is to watch what you eat and get regular exercise.
The Pleasure Factor: When good advice is not enough As a practitioner of several therapeutic modalities I am often asked by my clients to recommend a practice they can do on their own to maintain their sense of well-being between sessions or to manage various symptoms (mostly stress) during their hectic day. Being in constant search of such practices myself, I have learned first hand that the best and most effective practice is the one you will actually do! Over the years I have tried and failed to follow some great advice (like meditate and do yoga) and have discovered that all of the practices I actually do on a regular basis have one thing in common...pleasure!