Essential oils that work with your immune system

written by Anthony Zappia | WELLBEING COMMUNITY BLOGGER

Essential oils for immune support Credit: 123RF

I recently came across a study which showed that people who take aspirin and tylenol to deal with colds and flus actually suppress their body’s ability to produce antibodies, and so actually prolong their colds and lead to secondary infections. [1] Then you have antibiotics, which actually do a lot of harm to the body’s gut flora. Hence, the title of this post. Essential oils don’t supplant your immune system, they assist and support it. Here are some things to consider as we enter the cold and flu season.

Immune system

Cells that make up our immune system.

Use Eucalyptus oil or any of the Citrus oils in a diffuser daily. This will help clear the airborne environment of any pathogens. Oils such as orange and grapefruit are also beneficial in keeping people’s moods up-beat. As there is evidence that stress is a contributing factor to colds and flus, this is something you definitely want to keep in mind.[2]

In addition here are some other oils you might want to consider, either in your diffuser or to use internally (note the safety precautions for each oil):

Cinnamon. Cinnamon has been shown to be 99.9% effective against all viruses, including even Ebola. It and Oregano were both tested at 95% efficiency against bugs such as candida, E. coli and streptococcus strains. It has also been shown to be effective against several strains of Helicobacter pylori.
Blend Classification: Personifier
Blends with: All citrus oils, cypress, frankincense, geranium, juniper, lavender, rosemary and all spice oils e.g. basil, clove, fennel, nutmeg, oregano, rosemary and thyme.
Odor: Type: Base note (5-20% of the blend); Scent: Spicy, warm, sweet
Safety data: Avoid during pregnancy. Avoid putting your nostrils close to the diffuser as it may irritate your nasal membranes. Not for children under 6

Clove. Clove is the most powerful antioxidant you can find in nature and will kill the spores of fungal diseases (See also Clove oil for pain relief and colds ). According to the “legend of the 4 Thieves”, a group of 4 thieves in France, were able to rob the belongings of plague victims during the early 15th century without becoming infected with the Bubonic Plague. When they were apprehended it was learned that they used cloves in their formula to protect themselves. This formula has since become known as the “four thieves vinegar”, a copy of which remains in the museum of Marseille. Studies have shown that clove essential oil will kill over 60 types of bacteria, 15 strains of fungi and several viruses including the Herpes virus 1 and 2.
Blend Classification: Personifier
Blends with: Basil, bergamot, cinnamon bark, clary sage, grapefruit, lavender, lemon, nutmeg, orange, peppermint, rose, rosemary and ylang ylang
Odor: Type: Middle to Base Notes (20-80%of the blend); Scent: Spicy, warm, slightly bitter, woody
Safety data: Can irritate sensitive skin. Not for children under 6

Fennel. Fennel strengthens the digestive system, helps to rid the body of parasites and supports the overall metabolism.
Blend Classification: Equalizer and modifier
Blends with: Basil, geranium, lavender, lemon, rosemary and sandalwood
Odor: Type: Top to middle notes (20-80% of the blend); Scent: Sweet, spicy, licorice-like
Safety data: Use with caution if susceptible to epilepsy or pregnant. Not for children under 6

Oregano. Oregano is highly anti-microbial, helps with digestive problems and and has anti-inflammatory properties.
Blend Classification: Enhancer and equalizer
Blends with: Basil, fennel, geranium, lemongrass, myrtle, pine, thyme and rosemary
Odor: Type: Middle note (50-80% of the blend); Scent: Herbaceous and sharp
Safety data: Not for children under 6. Can cause skin irritation.

Rosemary. Rosemary is highly effective against parasites and fungi. Rosemary was also a part of the “four thieves vinegar” used by bandits in early 15th century France.
Blend Classification: Enhancer
Blends with: Basil, cedarwood, frankincense, lavender, peppermint, rosewood, eucalyptus, marjoram and pine.
Odor: Type: Middle note (50-80% of the blend); Scent: Herbaceous, strong, camphorous with woody balsamic and evergreen undertones.
Safety data: Not for children under 6. Avoid if epileptic, pregnant or suffer from high blood pressure.

Thyme. Has high anti-oxidant and anti-viral properties and works well to protect the kidney, liver and heart organs.
Blend Classification: Equalizer and enhancer
Blends with: Bergamot, cedarwood, juniper, melaleuca, oregano and rosemary
Odor: Type: Middle note (50-80% of the blend); Scent: Fresh, medicinal and herbaceous
Safety data: Not for children under 6. Use with caution if suffering from high blood pressure and avoid if pregnant.

Essential oils don't supplant your immune system, they assist and support it.

You may wish to try diffusing some of these oils in a room or rooms where you live and sleep. Better still try diffusing a blend of clove, cinnamon, lemon, eucalyptus and rosemary oils. A study from The Journal of Essential Oil Research in 2001, found that this blend killed over 99% of bacteria in 12 minutes. If you decide to try them internally, as part of your daily regimen, you might want to use them in gelatin or vegetable capsules. My usual caveat applies: make sure you use therapeutic grade essential oils.

If you’d like more information on these oils or you are interested in obtaining any of them, please contact us.

Till next time
Disclaimer: Please remember that anything discussed here does not
constitute medical advice and cannot substitute for appropriate medical care. Where essential oils are mentioned, it’s recommended you use only pure, unadulterated therapeutic grade essential oils and follow the safety directions of the manufacturer.
[1] A cohort study of stress and the common cold. Takkouche B, Regueira C, Gestal-Otero JJ. Epidemiology 11, 2001; May 12(3): 345–349.

[2] Adverse effects of aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen on immune function, viral shedding, and clinical status in rhinovirus-infected volunteers. Graham NM, Burrell CJ, Douglas RM, Debelle P, Davies L.
J Infect Dis. 1990 Dec;162(6):1277-82.

Further Reading:

Clove oil for pain relief and colds, Wellbeing, 2nd April 2013
Essential oils for Staph and MRSA infections, Wellbeing, 14th August 2013
Preparing for the flu season with essential oils, Wellbeing, 17th April 2013

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Anthony Zappia writes a regular blog about health and social issues, areas that he's passionate about. Twelve years ago he became especially interested in essential oils and their ability to enhance health and wellbeing. Anthony continues to follow the latest research and is himself a distributor of essential oils.