In honor of National Poetry Month, and Mary Oliver, our beloved national poet who passed away in January, I will be posting one of her poems each evening in April. I am hoping to follow in the footsteps of Sarah Clarkson and read a poem on Instagram Live in the evenings as well…Follow me on Instagram to tune in.
There is the heaven we enter
Through institutional grace
and there are the yellow finches bathing and signing
I’ve started a new series with my Facebook and Instagram Live videos on Tuesdays and I’m calling it “What Should I Do With My Oils?” Plenty of people I know have quite a collection of essential oils, but some don’t actually know what to do with them. (Hint: You DON’T DRINK/INGEST THEM!!!) I thought it would be helpful if I share the information I talk about in my Live videos in written form, especially so you can find all the blends and recipes in one place. Click here to watch yesterday’s Facebook Live video on Lemon.
Let’s Dive into Lemon:
Latin binomial: Citrus limon; Family: Rutaceae; Part of plant used: peel or zest of fruit.
Storage: Because it’s high in limonene (one of the chemical components) you need to store lemon in a dark container in the fridge or a cold room away from sunlight and heat. It can become oxidized and cause dermal sensitization. Average shelf life is 1-3 years. Err on the side of a shorter shelf life.
Safety concerns: It depends whether your lemon was expressed or distilled. Expressed lemon is preferred for aromatherapy; distilled tends to be used in food flavoring.
Expressed lemon presents a low risk for phototoxicity. If you’re using it topically, and your skin will be exposed to sunlight, applications should be lower than 2%. Or you shouldn’t expose your skin to sunlight/tanning beds for at least 12 hours.
Distilled lemon can be a dermal sensitizer when oxidized. (can cause skin irritation when the essential oil is old)
Drinking Lemon Essential Oil (Don’t Do It!!!):
Two reasons why you shouldn’t put essential oils in water and drink them:
Essential oils don’t dissolve in water, so it’s hard for your body to absorb or assimilate essential oils because it’s not dispersed evenly.
Because it isn’t evenly dispersed, the droplets of oil are floating around in your stomach and can irritate the mucus membranes of your stomach.
Indicated for: It’s an air purifier, immune-boosting, preventative measure against contagious illnesses, detoxifying, good for circulation, varicose veins, digestion, lymphatic congestion, muscular/joint aches and pains, headaches, general fatigue and weakness, prevents prematurely aging skin, good for acne, oily skin, helpful for anxiety and depression, anger/irritability, calming and stabilizing, refreshing, and cooling.
Blends well with: evergreens like Black Spruce, Scots Pine, Cypress, Juniper, Cedarwood, Lavender, Clary Sage, other citrus oils like Grapefruit, Lime, Mandarin, Niaouli, Eucalyptus, Spike Lavender, Helichrysum gymnocephalum.
Pick-Me-Up Diffuser Blend
5 drops Lemon
3 drops Lime
2 drops Grapefruit
Anti-Anxiety Diffuser blend
3 drops Lemon
3 drops Lavender
2 drops Basil
Anti-Inflammatory Muscle/Joint Blend (adapted from Aromatics International Recipe)
5 drops Black Spruce
5 drops Helichrysum Italicum
5 drops Roman Chamomile
5 drops Juniper Berry
4 drops Lemon
1 oz olive or sesame oil or Calendula Herbal oil/Trauma Oil
Blend together in small jar or bottle and apply to sore muscles or joints as needed.
Sore Leg Relief Blend (great for varicose veins, swelling, pain, etc.) This recipe is one I use every single day and at night too! You don’t have to have all of these oils–Lemon on its own is great for circulation, swelling, and leg pain, but if you have any of the others, they go great together!
I highly recommend taking the free introduction to aromatherapy course at the New York Institute of Aromatic Studies! It’s about 20 hours long and will give you a good introduction to the world of aromatherapy, including essential oil safety, blends and recipes, and much more!