Have you ever noticed how the moment you step into a spa, you instantly feel more relaxed? Or how the scent of a loved one’s perfume can instantly bring back a powerful memory or feeling? It’s all because emotion and scent are very closely related - literally. The hippocampus - the part of the brain responsible for feeling and memory - is located adjacent to the parietal lobe, where we process smell.Aromatherapy is defined as using a plant's aroma-producing oils (essential oils) as treatment. (Essential oils are taken from a plant's flowers, leaves, stalks, bark, rind, or roots.) And it doesn’t have to be complicated - it’s as simple as burning a candle at night before bed to de-stress, or dabbing oil on skin as perfume - our essential oil trios are perfect for creating a bespoke blend, or using alone on bare skin or in the bath.
Here, a doctor-approved list of essential oil recommendations for the next time you're feeling under the weather:
Anxiety: lavender, melissa, myrrh, bergamot, cardamom, chamomile, cypress, frankincense, rose, pine, vanilla, marjoram, neroli, nutmeg, patchouli, and orange/lime.
Fatigue: basil, angelica, cedarwood, clove, eucalyptus, jasmine, frankincense, lemon, neroli, marjoram, peppermint, patchouli, and vanilla.
Headaches: basil, chamomile, cinnamon, ginger, eucalyptus, lavender, lemon grass, melissa, marjoram, peppermint, thyme, ylang ylang, and clary sage.
Lung/sinus congestion: angelica, basil, cedarwood, clove, cypress, eucalyptus, fennel, ginger, hyssop, juniper, rosemary, tea tree, and marjoram.
Indigestion: lavender, juniper, lemon grass, lemon verbena, orange, peppermint, rose, rosemary, sandalwood, thyme, anise, fennel, ginger, and basil.
Menstrual cramps: angelica, basil, caraway, chamomile, ginger, clary sage, lavender, rose, rosemary, and sage.
Muscle soreness: bay, caraway, chamomile, eucalyptus, frankincense, ginger, geranium, juniper, lemon grass, lemon verbena, rosemary, sandalwood, patchouli and myrtle.
List courtesy of Julie Chen, M.D.