Yep! The natives don’t call it “Tick Bush” for nothing.
Kim Houston shares a homemade yoga mat cleaner.
1 glass spray bottle
3 parts water
1 part witch hazel or white vinegar
10 drops peppermint
10 drops lavender
5 drops lemongrass
5 drops tea tree oil
Cat Ebling and Dr. Josh Axe have put together some helpful advice on using essential oils to combat allergies.
1. Peppermint Oil
Peppermint oil is at the top of the list when it comes to one of the most effective essential oils. Peppermint is a very effective alternative treatment that can help to clear congestion, open airways, unclog the sinuses, and help relieve a scratchy throat. Peppermint is also valuable for coughs, asthma, sinusitis, and bronchitis.
This study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology investigated the effects of peppermint oil on the trachea and the conclusion was that peppermint oil acts as an antispasmodic, making it extremely effective at calming a cough—without the harmful side effects of over the counter cough medicine. And this study shows the anti-inflammatory effects of peppermint oil, helping to stop the chronic inflammation of seasonal allergies and asthma.
Peppermint oil can be used topically, diffused in the air, or ingested in small amounts. Use about 5 drops of peppermint oil at home to diffuse in the air to help unclog sinuses and open airways. 1-2 drops of peppermint oil can be taken internally to help reduce inflammation in the body. You can also add a couple drops of oil to water, coffee, tea, etc.
Diffuse five drops of peppermint essential oil at home to unclog sinuses and treat a scratchy throat. This will also help to relax the nasal muscles, enabling the body to clear out mucus and allergens like pollen. To reduce inflammation, take 1–2 drops of pure peppermint essential oil internally once a day. To relieve a headache, rub a drop of peppermint oil on the temples, forehead, over the sinuses (stay away from the eyes) and on the back of the neck. To open up and unclog the nose and sinuses, you can also rub a small amount under the nose. I like to mix 10-12 drops of peppermint oil into a few tablespoons of coconut oil and put it in a tiny tupperware container, and then rub the coconut oil and peppermint oil mixture beneath my nostrils each day.
Peppermint is also a mood lifter and helps to make one feel more energetic and alert, and has even been shown to increase and improve your fitness workouts.
2. Lavender Oil
Lavender oil has a variety of uses, and is a great oil to keep on hand for many different ailments. Lavender oil is excellent for seasonal allergies because it contains natural antihistamines which help to tone down your body’s reactions to pollen, dust, animal dander and other airborne allergens. Lavender oil is also an effective antibacterial cleaner in the home and can be used to disinfect many surfaces safely without creating the super bacteria that many toxic household cleaners do.
Rubbing a small amount on the palms and inhaling it periodically helps to clear your sinuses and reduce inflammation. It also smells great! One idea is to carry a few cotton balls with lavender oil in a container during allergy season, so you can use it as needed. Or try dabbing a bit on the forehead, cheeks and chest.
This oil is mild and will not irritate the skin. Lavender oil is also especially soothing for allergic reactions like rashes, blisters, insect bites, etc. You can rub directly on the affected area or add a few drops to a cool compress. Lavender is also very calming and relaxing and works well at nighttime near your bed. Use a diffuser for its anti-inflammatory, soothing properties and to help you sleep better. You can also try several drops of lavender oil in your hot tub or in a hot bath at night to help relax you before bed. Add some epsoms salt with your lavender in a night time bath for the extra benefits of magnesium for relaxation and muscle recovery.
3. Basil Oil
Basil has very powerful antioxidant capabilities, along with its anti-inflammatory properties. Basil also helps to not only strengthen the immune system, but it also has the ability to reduce the inflammation from allergies. Basil oil helps to balance and support the adrenal glands, which has much to do with lowering stress response, and balancing other hormones in the body.
Basil is also a scientifically proven, highly effective antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory substance. Basil is also very effective at fighting yeasts and molds and can help ward off an asthma attack or other illnesses such as colds and flu.
Dr. Josh Axe recommends one drop of basil oil taken internally by adding it to foods such as soups, drinks, salad dressings, etc. For the respiratory system, add 2-3 drops basil oil to a couple drops of coconut oil and apply topically to chest, back and temples.
4. Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus oil is that refreshing, slightly medicinal, menthol smell that helps to open up the sinuses and bronchial tubes. That cold, slightly numbing feel it produces in the nose actually helps to improve breathing.
Citronellal, one of the primary ingredients in eucalyptus, helps to treat and prevent respiratory infections as well as helping reduce the inflammation from allergies, according to a 2011 study in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Patients who were treated with eucalyptus spray reported an improvement in the severity of their most debilitating respiratory tract infection symptoms compared to participants in the placebo group.
Diffuse 5 or so drops of eucalyptus at home in your diffuser or apply it topically to the chest, back or temples. You can also try adding a couple drops of eucalyptus oil to a bowl or boiling water, and place a large towel over your head to keep the steam in, inhaling deeply for 5-10 minutes. This helps to treat any respiratory issues and any inflammation from allergies.
5. Lemon Oil
Lemon oil’s fresh, sunny smell will help to drain the lymph system (part of the immune system that cleans toxins and pathogens out of the body), and sooth respiratory issues. Lemon essential oil also fights bacteria, molds and viruses, all the while boosting your immune function. Lemon oil is especially effective, when diffused, at killing bacteria, molds and other allergens that are airborne.
Lemon water is also a great detox aid, stimulating the immune function by increasing white blood cell production. On the other hand, it helps to detox the liver, which helps to calm down the immune system and protect against overreaction to allergens. You can also add a couple of drops of lemon oil to water to help balance the body’s pH. Generally, when the body becomes too acidic, you become more prone to illnesses, so it’s a good idea to keep the pH in balance.
Lemon oil, with its fresh, clean, yummy smell also helps to kill germs and mold around the home, which are often allergic triggers as well. It works as well as bleach, without any harmful side effects. Add lemon oil to your laundry, or dilute with water for cleaning.
6. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil should be on hand in everyone’s medicine cabinet. It has an amazing variety of uses from antibacterial to antifungal and everything in between. Tea tree oil is not to be ingested, but is safe for use on the skin without dilution. Tea tree oil works well for skin irritation, such as redness, inflammation, and even swelling from poison ivy or allergic rashes, insect bites and other allergic reactions.
Tea tree oil has the ability to destroy bacteria, molds and viruses that are airborne. A 2000 study conducted in Germany found that tea tree oil exhibits antimicrobial activity against a wide range of bacteria, yeasts and fungi. These microbes lead to inflammation and force our immune system to work on overdrive.
Use tea tree oil on rashes and hives, or use as a household cleaner to eliminate bacteria and mold—common triggers for allergies. While tea tree oil can be used directly on skin, if you are sensitive, as many allergic people are, you can dilute with a carrier oil first.
Other effective uses for essential oils include taking 1-2 drops of lemon or peppermint oil internally to calm down an allergic reaction from foods; tea tree oil or basil oil work well on rashes, as well as lavender oil.
Use lemon oil and tea tree oil for cleaning around the house by adding about 40 drops of lemon oil, and 20 drops of tea tree oil to water and a small amount of vinegar. This kills bacteria, molds, dust mites, viruses and also catches any animal dander or pollen that may be floating around or sitting on the surfaces of your home.
And lastly, combining 2 or 3 drops of peppermint, eucalyptus, and lavender oil together with coconut oil, makes a great massage oil, especially on the temples, back, chest and bottoms of the feet for allergies.
Essential oils are powerful aids in fighting off the effects of seasonal and other allergies, but combined with a clean healthy diet that eliminates all processed starchy foods, grains, sugars, and chemical preservatives, and is high in fresh, organic, antioxidant filled veggies goes a long way towards calming allergic reactions.
Ever wonder why you are having trouble getting the oil out of the bottle?
Need to cleanse your home of the negative energy that some people emit as a vapor trail when they go through life? These are some good opinions as to which oils can help with that.
Someone asked what oils would you recommend to cleanse a house of bad energy and how would you do it? Diffuse?
White Angelica. Apply topically and diffuse!
Sage and cedar have been used for centuries for cleansing
Sage then Palo Santo
Palo Santo diffuse in every room.
Oils work because they interact with cell receptors. If the molecules of the oil interact with the cell receptor, there is a need fulfilled. It’s not that the oils know where to go, it’s the body that utilizes them. Also, this is how oils are adaptogenic.
Question: If I apply oils onto my skin but have a few layers of fat between my skin and my organs, will the oils still work?
Answer: The oils are not liquids. They are, basically, liquid vapors. Vapors are like gasses. That’s why we smell them – they are vaporizing!!
They contain plant molecules. Just like being told that eating our veggies is good for us, if we can get this plant chemistry into our bodies, our body can figure out what to do with those molecules to “fix things.”
The oils are “lipid soluble.” What that means is that they pass through cell membranes which are made of “lipids” also called “fats.”
So if you can imagine applying oils to your chest, it’s easy for me to imagine those liquid vapors passing right through the skin, cells, etc., pretty much right away, perhaps even as we’re capping up the oil. I can almost imagine some of the molecules being picked up and used by the body, and the rest passing right through the body and out the head, back, feet, etc. That’s why they’re so safe. If we don’t use it, it’s gone. It’s not stored in fat or the liver like fatty oils. Essential oils are in a totally different chemical family than fatty oils like olive or canola!!
Here’s where it get’s interesting… When you apply an oil, it immediately passes through the skin. Some gets used right there on the spot. That’s why, when you apply Cool Azul Pan Relief Cream to a painful area, it may stop hurting right away. Some gets picked up by the blood, which is then carried around the body, and to each of the cells!!
According to Candace Pert, the scientist who discovered the first cell receptor site in the 70’s, every cell contains billions of receptor sites, and… drum roll here…. EVERY CELL CONTAINS RECEPTOR SITES FOR EVERY MOLECULE THE BODY USES. Profound…
Receptor sites are molecule specific. A receptor site that wants acetylcholine wants that one molecule. It waits. And waits. Molecules pass by in the blood, but it waits. Finally, one comes by that it can identify. The receptor site sends out a vibrating thread. If the molecule vibrates in a compatible way, the molecule is “docked” into the receptor site, and a message is sent to the brain saying, “Hey, we got some acetylcholine here!” That’s important because that’s the molecule our body uses to tense and relax muscles!!
So let’s say you or I are working in the garden, and our shoulder is beginning to get really tired and tense. Why? We may be running short on acetylcholine. We go in and open a bottle of Roman Chamomile and rub some on. Ahhh… relief. Why? There’s a molecule in chamomile called 3-methyl-butyl-acetate (sounds awful but it’s natural) that is a TWIN of acetylcholine!!!! And our receptor sites ACCEPTED the 3-methyl-butyl-acetate in place of acetylcholine, sent a message to the brain, and our muscles RELAXED! Instantly! The body works SO FAST when it has exactly what it needs!!
OK, so that’s the primary way the oils work in our bodies. We get ’em on, and they do the work!!
It’s helpful, but absolutely not necessary, to understand what molecules do what and which oils they’re in. Frank Burns, who started Healthier Thymes way back when used to say, “How do the oils work? Very well, thank you!” The main thing is to understand a few basics – lavender helps us sleep, peppermint regulates body temp, etc. The longer we use them, the more we learn. Perfect!!
Just like eating one piece of broccoli will not change much of our health and wellness, if we will just get these oils and other products into our bodies – as often as we can, our bodies will be able to pick and choose what they need for optimal wellness!!
Natural Chemical Free Cleaning With Thieves Essential Oil Products
Every year about this time people start feeling like doing a little spring cleaning. Do you find yourself feeling motivated to freshen things up a bit after a long winter with the house closed up and the furnace or a wood burner running? There is something motivating about the spring. It makes you feel like getting out and doing things. I find myself wanting to give the house a good cleaning.
Most of the cleaning products on the market these days are full of toxic chemicals that are not at all good for your health. I’m sure you are like me, you do NOT want to be poisoning your family every day with the products you are using to clean your home. Health and safety data only exists for 15 percent of all the chemicals out there, even though so many are known to cause asthma or endocrine disruptions.
Essential oils are a better way. They are totally free of harsh chemicals, steam distilled or cold pressed from pure plants. Young Living’s Thieves Product Line is plant based and free of dangerous harsh chemicals.
Here are a few DIY recipes using Thieves Products for natural cleaning in your home.
Glass and Mirror Cleaner
1 capful Thieves Household Cleaner
5 drops Citrus Fresh essential oil (or any citrus oils)
1 teaspoon white vinegar
3 cups water
Add all ingredients to a spray bottle and shake well to combine. To use, spray windows and glass surfaces liberally and wipe clean with a lint-free cloth.
Deep Cleaning Scrub
1 capful Thieves Household Cleaner
2–3 tablespoons baking soda
3 drops Young Living Lemon Essential oil
Combine Thieves Household Cleaner and enough baking soda to form a thick paste. Apply mixture with a clean cloth, sponge, or scrubbing brush and scour the surface thoroughly.
Deep Cleaning Scrub – Larger batch
3 cups Baking Soda
3/4 cup Thieves Household Cleaner
1 Tbsp Distilled Vinegar
30 drops Young Living Lemon Essential oil
1. In a large glass bowl, add your Thieves Household cleaner, vinegar and Lemon essential oil.
2. Then slowly add your baking soda, stirring to combine.
3. Once completely mixed through, transfer to your desired container. I recycled my old honey jar. It fit perfectly. You could even use an old soap dish bottle. (However you may need to add a bit of water to thin it enough to squirt through the top)
4. Use wherever a little more scrubbing action is needed.
Once completely mixed through, transfer to your desired container. You may need to add a bit of water to thin it if you are using a squirt bottle like an old dish soap bottle.
DIY Thieves Cleaning Wipes
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 Tablespoon Thieves Household Cleaner
10 drops Lemon essential oil
20 high quality paper napkins (Coffee filters also make good cleaning wipes.)
Glass container with lid
Combine all ingredients, except the napkins, in glass container. Stir to combine.
Add the paper napkins. Make sure all the napkins are damp. Cover with lid.
Store in a cool, dark place.
Makes 20 wipes.
Note: For reusable cleaning wipes, cut several cotton fabric squares into 5-inch squares. Put the fabric squares in a sealable glass container. Old t-shirts make nice cleaning wipes. Pour liquid over the cloths. Make sure the cloths are well dampened.
Carpet Spot Cleaner
1 capful Thieves Household Cleaner
6 cups water
Mix water and Thieves Household Cleaner in a spray bottle, shaking to combine. To use, lightly spray the spot and blot with a clean white cloth. Repeat as needed.
Wood Floor Cleaner
5 drops Citrus Fresh
2 capfuls Thieves Household Cleaner
1 cup olive oil
Mix in 1 gallon warm water in a bucket. Use to mop floors.
Combine 5 drops Citrus Fresh, 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/2 capful Thieves Household Cleaner in a small bowl. Apply evenly to wood cabinets with a damp cloth.
Kitchen Sink and Countertops
Combine 3 cups water and 1 capful Thieves Household Cleaner in a spray bottle. Spray surfaces with solution and wipe clean.
Combine 1 cup water and 1 capful Thieves Household Cleaner in a spray bottle. Spray toilet liberally, let sit 15 minutes, then scrub with a brush. Flush to rinse. Spray seat and outer surface, then wipe clean.
Pour 1-2 capfuls of Thieves Household Cleaner into trash can. Fill with water and let sit for an hour or more. Pour out water and wipe dry.
DIY Stain Remover with Thieves Laundry Soap
1 bar solid castile soap, unscented, shaved into small pieces
1/3 cup washing soda
2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
½ cup water
2 tablespoons Thieves Laundry Soap
4 drops Lemon essential oil
Empty deodorant container
Empty lip balm container
1 Add all ingredients except for the essential oil and laundry soap into a saucepan.
2 Heat on low until the soap and all the particles are mostly melted.
3 Remove from the heat.
4 Add Thieves laundry soap and essential oil and evenly mix.
5 Let cool slightly and empty the mixture into a ziplock bag.
6 Cut the corner off and squeeze the liquid into your containers.
7 Put on the lids, let completely cool.
8 Lightly dampen stick with a wet washcloth before use to adequately spread around the stained area.
9 Wash as you normally would.
5 reasons you should use a plant based cleaner
1. Safety: Have you read the label on the back of a commercial cleaner? Warning! Flammable! Do not ingest! Keep out of reach of children! Many chemicals used in household cleaners have not been tested for safety. Household cleaning supplies are one of the top five substance classes accounting for calls to the National Poison Control Center.
Many commercial cleaners contain ingredients that are endocrine disrupting chemicals, carcinogens, or neurotoxins. Kids, babies, and pets are even more vulnerable to chemical exposure because they are smaller and cannot get rid of toxins as easily as adults. It is definitely worth ditching harsh chemicals for a cleaner with plant- and mineral-based ingredients.
2. Air quality: Did you know that indoor air is 5–7 times more polluted than outdoor air? Most cleaning products contain Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), which have been associated with many health problems, including damage to the liver, kidneys, and the central nervous system. They have also been shown to harm our lungs and cause throat irritations and headaches. VOCs are released when products are used and can linger in the air long after we clean. When we breathe, we inhale the air—as well as whatever is in the air.
3. Environmental impact: Harsh chemicals found in cleaners are not only harmful to our bodies, but they also have a major impact on the environment and are huge contributors to environmental pollution. Some conventional cleaning products contain ingredients that are toxic, non-biodegradable, and from non-renewable resources like petroleum, so they harm the Earth’s ecosystems. Harsh chemicals may contaminate the water through rivers, streams, and lakes, which affects wildlife, plants, trees, and us! Plus, there are thousands of chemicals that are in cleaning products that have never been tested for safety.
4. Convenience: It’s much easier to clean with a few products that take care of all your cleaning needs, rather than a having whole arsenal of toxic products under your sink and in your bathrooms. With Thieves® Household Cleaner, you can tackle multiple cleaning jobs in your home without switching products as you clean! It cleans countertops,
windows, mirrors, floors, toilets, showers, and pretty much everything else. Plus, you don’t have to worry about getting bleach stains on your clothes or accidentally mixing dangerous chemicals together. It’s worth a try for the convenience alone.
5. Cost: The cost of buying cleaners is expensive, especially if you have to buy multiple different cleaners. Thieves Household Cleaner is very cost effective, and it comes in a concentrated form. There are approximately 60 capfuls of the cleaner in a 14.4-ounce bottle. Using the medium degreasing ratio, you can get about 29 16-ounce cleaners. That’s less than $1 a bottle!
Why worry about all the what if’s? Be empowered and take charge of your chores by using a cleaner with plant-based ingredients.
Chemical Free Living
The average person applies 300 chemicals to their body every day and 80 of those chemicals before breakfast. Most of those are from soap, makeup, shampoo hair care and other personal care products.
Essential oils are a better way. They are totally chemical free, steam distilled or cold pressed from pure plants. There’s nothing in them but that one oil, whether it is lemon, tangerine, lavender, peppermint, or others.
There are over a million uses for essential oils — cleaning supplies, personal care products like toothpaste and deodorant, in the diffuser, oil-infused nutritional supplements.
Have you ever calculated what a good value your essential oils are? Here are a couple of handy charts with the math all done for you.