Evidence Based Approach to Essential Oils

My Notes From The Essential Oils Revolution

An Interview with Sayer Ji

Essential Oils and the Evidence Based Approach to Natural Health Care

I love essential oils I use them daily I think this is a great opportunity for people to learn one of the safest most affordable ways of self healing that exists. I just love the idea that you can walk into your backyard and there’s an herb there that is designed by nature that is going to provide a solution which the medical profession establishment is trying to make us believe requires expensive and synthetic interventions which we all know carry huge side effects including death. When you think about it nature does heal and it’s the Indian theory of existence it’s all in nature the solution to our ill’s. That’s what I love about aromatherapy your not even ingesting it you can ingest essential oils but the beauty of something as small as a molecule going right into the nose and then right into the brain is pretty profound to me and I love the idea of it.

Cancer and essential oils is such and interesting topic you may know that we are failing in the war against cancer since Nixon signed the national cancer act about 40 years ago. Now we have been spending billions of dollars on a disease which most of us still believe it’s gene based that we have made no progress with if anything it’s gotten far worse. Even modern medical establishments are acknowledging that radiation and chemo can cause cancer and actually don’t address the root cause. When you start looking at the research that exists on essential oils which 20 years ago there was none, I did a quick search before I came on here and there was 709 references for essential oils and cancer and almost all of them show at least in experimental model that essential oils can kill cancer. That’s very exciting because many of the studies on conventional lets say radiotherapy there was a study published last year by the UCLA cancer group showed that radiotherapy created a 30 times increase in the ability to create more tumors in the cells being exposed to them. The very therapies that are being used are actually causing cancer so when you see this research on essential oils which can be extracted from plants and even spices that we commonly consume killing cancer it just get’s you really excited.

One of the studies on frankincense as you know is one of the substances that the magi brought baby Jesus it’s still therapeutic, we know now also known as boswellia has powerful anti-cancer properties part of it is it’s a very powerful anti-inflammatory. Most people know about frankincense and boswellia because it’s one of the vetted clinical study based substances for osteoarthritis symptoms which a lot of people take aspirin and Tylenol for which represent a massive burden of morbidity and mortality. Many people don’t know this but when the FDA finally did ban vioxx they identified almost 100,000 deaths from taking this commonly used prescribed cox2 inhibitor. It turns out the over the counter ones like ibuprofen recently in a Lancet study were found to have the same toxicity to the heart muscle. We are dealing with tens of thousands of people that are dying from taking ibuprofen when they could be taking something as simple as boswellia for inflammation. Inflammation is at the root of cancer processes and some argue what happens in cancer promotion is you constantly get injury to a type of cell or tissue and the body tries to heal it and in doing so there’s an inflammatory response because inflammation is part of the healing response. Over time let’s say your smoking constantly and the tissue is getting injured and the body is trying to heal it and it’s secreting these chemical messengers to try to get that cell to regenerate, the stem cells are replicating and trying to heal it’s a proliferative process in fact it’s very much like cancer. Inflammation and carcinogenesis are tied together so whenever you see powerful anti-inflammatory substances like boswellia extract having anti-inflammatory properties then it also often indicates that their anti-cancer. The study that were looking at with frankincense made global headlines at the time because they found that it was capable of killing drug resistant ovarian cancer. This was a study that gave people a lot of hope because even as today you may have heard Angelina Jolie decided to preventively remove her ovaries because of her BCRA status, her gene status, because it’s the most deadly gynecologic cancer. Of course something as simple as a resin from a plant used for thousands of years, boswellia or frankincense can kill ovarian cancer that’s really promising.

They are not using oils because for one their not patentable and what happens of course really when you see a drug that has FDA approval it’s quite frankly received the kiss of death. What I mean is if you take a natural compound and there is tons of research on this, it’s what I do I collect all the research that has been funded by drug companies trying to find lead compounds to produce drugs with. They go to nature they find turmeric there’s a legend it kills cancer they isolate a compound in it that shows value in the cell animal model and they tinker with it like a mad scientist to create a synthetic analog. At that moment they have taken a natural compound that’s therapeutic and created a monster which is now going to have some symptom suppressive properties but then it inevitably creates 75 or more adverse effects but because it’s synthetic. They can now get their several decades long patent which justifies investing a billion dollars on average on the front end for phase 1, 2, 3 clinical trials as required to get FDA drug approval. You can imagine if your a private investor your going to invest a billion dollars your not going to invest in an essential oil that works and is safe and effective that you can extract from your backyard your going to invest in something that’s synthetic and has never existed on the planet before that also the body has no way to truly deal with. It’s going to accumulate in the body cause damage to the liver or cause some kind of disruption to normal physiology and that’s what drugs are and why you see 50% of FDA drugs are yanked off the market or their patent expired because their so deadly and harmful. I think that people who don’t realize this are going to be shocked is that’s why drugs are so deadly is they are all synthetic gunk basically.

Recently the CDC declared an era of nightmare bacteria basically conjuring the image of these zombie like microbes that nothing can kill because all of our conventional antibiotics have been overused. Conventional antibiotics are so simple in construct these germs are not like humans that take thousands of generations to change our adaptation and genome to reflect our environment they can change their genes in a matter of hours and then replicate over and over. After years of being exposed to simple compounds like penicillin or the penicillin class of antibiotics these germs are just laughing their gobbling up these chemicals and develop resistance and create a biofilm a kind of slime. Over time what has happened is we have an emergence of what we now know as resistant bacteria such as methicillin resistant staphylococcus which is MRSA when you think MRSA you think oh my God there’s nothing we can do were all going to die none of the antibiotics work. It’s not true all it does is indicate the failure of the conventional model that germs are evil let’s throw chemicals at it and we might end up killing all the microbes in your body you need to survive it might even kill the healthy cells. But you know what it’s the enemy it’s like finding a terrorist in your body their going to kill everything to get to that one terrorist. That’s pretty much the medical military model we use today and it’s now been shown by the top of the CDC you know what were sorry we can’t do anything to help you. Now everyone is going back to nature, what were finding is essential oils have powerful anti-mrsa properties. I did a search on medline before I came in you all could go to pubmed.gov it’s a free database search engine that gets you access to twenty three million citations and in there you will find eighty seven citations on essential oils and MRSA. That’s just the tip of the iceberg because we know all of the plant compounds that have been studies you take thymol from thyme, eugenol from eucalyptus, you’ll find they all have powerful anti-infective properties. What’s interesting to me is it’s the same thing with cancer chemotherapy, antibiotics are basically both considered chemical chemotherapies and they both target these cells which are incapable of truly dying when given exposure to these pitiful drugs. What happens in both cases the essential oils are able to target and kill the bacteria or the cancer cells that basically have emerged in an environment of toxicity. Let’s say you have a thousand different bacteria their all exposed to these poisons and let’s say 99% of them die and what happens is that one percent becomes a super germ or a super cell that is now capable of surviving your chemical apocalypse. The healthy cells around you and the microbes in your gut aren’t able to so ultimately you end up killing the patient when you overuse these or even use them so yes essential oils seem to show us the future of medicine when it comes to both categories of disease.

After years of just stumbling through the literature and I encourage everyone to do research themselves, go to pubmed.gov and just type in a key word like Google and you find this sea of little clinical pearls. This one was from the Japanese Journal of Pharmacology 2002 they did a study on human subjects where they had them smell these different oils and when they inhaled the fragrance of rose oil or patchouli they found 40% decrease in relative sympathetic activity, that’s a pretty significant decrease. Your sympathetic system is active when you have the fight or flight just smelling these two substances was able to significantly reduce their activity and furthermore they found when you inhale the fragrance of pepper oil it had the opposite effect. Some essential oils will increase sympathetic activity but when they inhaled rose oil they saw 30% decrease in adrenalin concentrations within just a few hours. They could actually measure adrenalin dropping down which is really important because people who have severe states of anxiety where they are giving them colapin which is a drug that’s so powerful that when you take someone off of it they can go into seizure and have an almost alcohol withdraw symptom meaning they could die. Could you imagine smelling something that has no harm that has an inherently beautiful aroma like the rose but having so much power in reducing stress like that is pretty remarkable.

All of the essential oils on green med info and we have a section, one of the things that’s it’s been studied to do is have an anti-emetic effect meaning if your feeling nauseous and you want to throw up, patchouli has that property. It’s been shown too in animal models to reduce the activation of glial cells in the brain that are overstimulated in injury that create these things called reactive oxygen species so all this damage to the fatty components in the brain your brain, is basically going rancid becoming inflamed patchouli inhibits that. It’s been show as well in surgical and trauma models to have gastrointestinal protection. As were looking more into these research models were finding new applications which is remarkable when you think drugs have one marketed beneficial effect which is usually frankly a side effect that they repackage as something beneficial and seventy adverse effects where essential oils almost always have dozens of other side applications or benefits when used responsibly.

Microbes are an interesting topic when we look through the lens of the research that has opened up by looking at the microbiome which is all the different bacteria, viruses, fungi, even things like parasites which we once thought was harmful are fundamental for the health of our microbiome as we realize we are 99% bacteria versus 1% eukaryotic cells. When we look at it through that lens we start to appreciate how important it is that we have to protect the gut and honor the health of it not just take these broad spectrum chemicals that kill the good and bad bacteria. That’s one of the things about essential oils that are even in spices that we naturally eat like ginger and turmeric that they tend to have a modulatory roll where they selectively target the pathogen, bad bacteria, and increase the good. That’s why spices like ginger, turmeric, garlic and others why they have been used for so long is the essential oils that they contain are really good for food borne infectious agents helping to preserve the balance of the good bacteria within our gut.

When I look at the research that has accumulated and on our page under therapeutic actions we have a section under A’s for aromatherapy where people can see the direct first literature. I did a little study, a little review, I looked at the most compelling research that I think everyone should know about. Some of it is really interesting they took school girls who have menstrual pain which is common a lot of hormone disruption substances, a lack of ideal diets, what they found was a topical application of lavender, clary sage and rose was extremely effective in decreasing the severity of the menstrual cramps. This is extremely important I have two girls and I am extremely careful about giving them things like Tylenol or ibuprofen because there are thousands that die every year of liver failure just from taking Tylenol in recommended doses. When you think about something as simple as applying lavender or clary sage to the abdomen with very little of the risk associated with taking internally a synthetic chemical it’s encouraging to know they have done this type of human research.

Another one I like to talk about is for insomnia, many of us have heard that lavender is good for insomnia because it’s relaxing but what they have done is they found that in female college students that not only did it help with sleep promoting properties but it reduced depression as well. You have this example of how these substances are able to do two things with one hand and have side benefits unlike this concept we almost all think that medicine if it’s powerful it’s going to have side effects we just accept that as the norm. I don’t accept that if I’m going to take something in a concentrated form I’m going to expect it to have side benefits instead of the norm. Here is one that I don’t think anyone is going to want to hear excessive chocolate cravings, what’s wrong with these researchers, if you do have those and chocolate has so many benefits. Not for everybody but for most chocolate can help to heal the endothelial dysfunction that’s beneath the number one killer in the world which is heart disease but jasmine was found in a clinical study to reduce chocolate cravings.

Tobacco the number one preventable lifestyle modifiable risk factor for death from cancer it turns out the inhalation of black pepper extract is very effective at reducing withdrawal symptoms. I will add too that lime juice that also has essential volatile oil components has been shown to be as effective with nicotine, smoking withdrawal and discontinuation. There is a lot of research on arthritis pain, one of the studies looked at lavender, eucalyptus, rosemary, peppermint and it was found to be very effective at reducing the pain and depression scores associated with arthritic patients. Those who have children and been through the infant stage know that infantile colic can be a maddening experience one of the things found to be helpful is aromatherapy massage using lavender oil.

Alzheimer’s disease it turns out that 28 days of aromatherapy using rosemary and lemon essential oils in the morning and lavender and orange in the evening resulted in significant improvement in their social orientation in their cognitive function. These were Alzheimer’s patients, keep in mind this is one of the worst diseases because all the drugs do nothing to modify the underlying trajectory. The World Health Organization acknowledges they are the highest risk factor for seizure so in other words the drugs are neurotoxic and their giving them to Alzheimer’s patients who have brain damage. To think that something as simple as an aromatherapy intervention could be beneficial for cognitive function is quite wonderful.

With migraines lavender oil to the temple in my own experience I have worked with hundreds of people with this problem, using peppermint and lavender to the temple and the forehead by the third eye extremely effective almost immediate relief. Finally post partum depression this is a big issue aromatherapy massage has been found to be very helpful for the physical and mental status and also to facilitate infant and mother interaction there is a lot of research. It’s good for people to know they have done these human clinical studies they are almost always positive and again a lot of great solutions for those using essential oils.

Turmeric is the one plant that gets me really passionate because of the research you have over 7,200  studies published on it’s benefits we have indexed about 1,700 on our site relative to 700 benefits but what’s compelling of all for turmeric is cancer. It’s so upsetting to people like you and I to know that there is a cure for very hard to treat cancers that really will never make it to the light of day through the conventional medical system and the media because turmeric is that compelling solution and it’s extremely safe. When it comes to the essential oil component what I love for people to look at is when you look at whole foods, when you look at whole turmeric the root which you can increasingly purchase at health food stores is that is contains within it a delivery system that is very unique. If you were to take out the essential oil component which is about 3-4% of the turmeric tuber by weight or just the curcumin which is the alcohol and water soluble part which most of the research is on it’s only 5% of the whole plant. The whole contains it all together and the essential oils permeate the entire organism the thousand plus chemistries are different biomolecules within this whole plant are kind of all attached together in an intelligent way. What that means is when your thinking about let’s say intestinal cancer and your taking turmeric powder the whole plant or even the whole tuber your consuming it, just chewing it, your going to be getting everything that nature designed it to have and that’s how our ancestors always consumed it and were exposed to these essential oils. That’s how the membranes in our bodies were exposed to them, that’s how the intelligent dialogue occurs between this species and our species. When it comes down to the research that has emerged on essential oils and turmeric there is something called turmerones which is interesting because it has anti-tumor properties. When you buy your 95% standardized curcumin it’s not going to contain that essential oil in it so you have to get more of a whole plant extract or eat the whole plant or get the turmeric powder. This turmerone was recently found to do some pretty amazing things it’s able to activate the stem cells in our body that are responsible for regenerating healthy tissues. If your body has injured tissue and it’s starting to mutate and maybe become cancerous or pre-cancerous this substance has been shown to selectively activate the regenerative cell lines, the stem cells. This particular study was in the brain which is even more important and cause those cells to produce new daughter cells which are not only healthy but can differentiate into functional neurons in the brain. What were learning is we have components of the plant itself which are essential oil categorized that have special properties that all the components of turmeric that get the attention don’t have. I think that what were going to find when we move forward in the science those that are advocating for the use of essential oils are going to see special value in what their doing and special applications. I would also have some words of caution or suggestion which is essential oils can be very powerful and there’s not a lot of human research on how they work when you take concentrated amounts of them. When you do essential oils I am personally a fan of super critical extraction which is using carbon dioxide at high pressure low temperature and it’s able to pull out a lot of the components that petrochemical based processes aren’t even able to pull out. Then of course with petrochemicals like hexane you leave residues, alcohol is fine water brings out some components but were finding some of the newer technologies like super critical extraction may provide additional benefits for those that are looking at taking the essential oils out of the plant.

Oregano oil is one of my favorites it has this amazing property of killing infection in fact in our project on oregano oil when you look at our page you find there are 35 different diseases that it has been shown to have value for and the primary mode for action because we also measure the pharmacological action. It’s antifungal, antibacterial and antiprotozoal so it has a wide range of ways  in which it kills the different infectious agents that’s because of a weakened immune system or maybe your eating the wrong thing that we can get exposed to. One of the magical things that is very interesting is the carvacrol component which is the essential oil, let’s say you buy some North American Herb and Spice essential oil of oregano it has high concentrations of this carvacrol which is similar to the other components like eucalyptus eugenol and thyme has thymol so this substance actually activates within the cells of our body genetic pathways that are associated with longevity and reduction in a lot of the inflammatory pathways that we associate with modern disease it’s known as zenel hormesis. Let’s say the oregano plant, which is out in the wild that are exposed to the elements, have been designed to have defenses and protection in place that even humans don’t have. They produce compounds like caracrol which are zenohermetic and what they do is if you can imagine in the past when we were living in harmony with nature and suddenly a drought was coming on or maybe temperature changes the plants pick up that environmental information and alter their chemistry. When we consume them that sends messages to our DNA and our body that we need to start conserving energy, we need to start activating antioxidant systems to start to promote longevity and that’s exactly what these compounds have been shown to do. This is true for compounds in turmeric, green tea, resveritrol that you hear about in grapes that are grown organically their stressed they produce high amounts of resveratrol versus those that are factory farmed. The idea is that these essential oils are not just for killing infection, aren’t just for killing cancer, their part of our genetic heritage in such that we probably co-developed with them for so long. If you take them out of the diet suddenly if you take the spices out, take out these compounds that are only found in real organically produced stressed plants our whole health falls apart, our whole genome falls apart and all these different pathways open that are activated and associated with chronic disease and acute disease.

Lavender oil is interesting I have used it on my children when they are stressed and I have to say the proof is in the pudding when you see the effects it’s really remarkable. One of the interesting things about lavender it that we think about it for anxiety, insomnia, cortisol and depression but it actually has a wide range of benefits on our site we have 37 different diseases it’s been studied for. When you think about lavender it’s a flower and there is a lot of interesting research that flowers are part of the angiosperm family which is part of the flowering fruit family that produces fruits and seeds and a lot of the grains that 70% of our sustenance is based on. The idea of evolution this species coevolved with our predecessors that’s why there is such a fundamental activation of calmness and health by us perceiving flowers. They did a study at Rutgers University and they gave the humans flowers and they found that 100% of them by giving flowers they had a positive emotional response. Some of the studies using aromatherapy using lavender showed the lowering of blood pressure, when you think of the modern approach it’s really physiological you take a beta blocker, ace inhibitor, calcium channel blocker a diuretic and your basically just messing with the physiology to get the result you want. When your dealing with the top down acknowledging that we are psycho-spiritual beings in a physical body and stress can be from us thinking too much or not responding to an event that’s not more oriented in a way towards gratitude there are certain things going on in the mind body connection. Aromatherapy addresses more of the top down level instead of messing with the plumbing let’s just focus on the fact that there is too much stress too much adrenalin that’s why lavender is able to lower blood pressure because it targets the sympathetic or the fight or flight response. Some of the other things it’s been shown to be beneficial for is sleep, some of the things that are counterintuitive is pre-surgically they have shown children before going under anesthesia you give them lavender and it causes their stress to go down what a great way to reduce some of that burden going into surgery. There is also research showing it used for tension related to menopause, and pain associated with ear infections, improves cognition in healthy adults with mood. A lot of the research on lavender is psycho-social, psycho-spiritual but there is also the reality that it kills candida so it does have your typical antiseptic properties it also has antithrombotic, anticlotting, antiplatelet properties. Keep in mind that people don’t realize that wintergreen has this methyl salicylate which is similar to aspirin which is acetyl salicylate so when you apply essential oils topically they can get into your blood. If your a menstruating woman and your getting a massage and you get a lot of wintergreen it’s going to have some pain killing properties but it will also cause increased bleeding so that’s something to consider. There is research on lavender for it’s anti-methicillin sensitive and resistant staff properties it’s good for a mosquito repellant the list goes on and on.

Peppermint is one of the few oils that has been found in Egyptian pyramids going back thousands of years so it was highly prized back then as a medicinal but the smell is what we most think about. The thing about peppermint is it extremely effective for gastrointestinal disorders that involve spasm or irritation and when I did a review of the literature. I actually have an article called the power of peppermint 15 health benefits revealed that number one on the list was for irritable bowel syndrome that’s significant because there is really very little that can be offered through conventional medicine for this condition in fact often times there using medication that can make the condition worse. They were able to use the peppermint oil, this is essential oil capsules, in a number of clinical studies and found extremely good results meaning 75% of those receiving the oil saw reduced severity of pain with IBS within 2 weeks in one trial. Another one found significant improvement of quality of life this one was 24 weeks and a 2007 trial where 75% of the patients saw an impressive 50% reduction in total IBS symptoms score. So given that it has no known side effects, of course when your on medication you can’t say that, but if your not on any medications that’s pretty significant. The other applications for gastrointestinal is colonic spasm a lot of people go in for barium enemas and have really painful spasms this has been studies as an alternative to a drug called buscopan for it’s ability to reduce those types of spasms it’s been found as effective. In gastric emptying disorders it’s been found effective, functional dyspepsia 90ml of peppermint oil with a combination of caraway 67% of patients in this 2000 trial showed very good improvement of symptoms. Infantile colonic same thing used as an effective alternative to the simethicone treatment over the counter which is often used for children I personally would always choose a natural substance over a synthetic one. There are so many applications nipple pain from breast feeding, a study on tubol culosis showed a significant reduction in occurrences exasperation of pulmonary tubol culosis which is really interesting because it’s a significant disorder with limited treatment options. Allergic rhinitis or hay fever, shingles pain topically it has an anti-shingles pain activity in this particular study from 2002 showed the therapeutic effects persisted throughout the entire two month follow up period. Memory problems and I’d don’t want to leave rosemary out because there is this correlation of remembrance and rosemary it’s been found that it has powerful acetylcholinesterase activity meaning inhibiting the enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine very much like Alzheimer’s drugs and also it’s just a really powerful cognitive enhancer for reasons that we don’t fully understand. Peppermint has been shown to reduce chemo-induced nausea it has anti prostate cancer properties it has a protection effect against radiation damage it has effects against herpes simplex viruses like type 1 and of course against dental carries or cavities and bad breath it has been found to have significant benefit for.

Sayer Ji web page greenmedinfo.com


Disclaimer: The information contained on this site is for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment rendered by a licensed physician. It is essential that you discuss with your doctor any symptoms or medical problems that you may be experiencing .

M. Scherker medical researcher