That smell, that color, that taste! Medicinally, lavender can be used both internally as a tea or applied externally to the skin as an essential oil. The essential oil has even been called “a first-aid kit in a bottle” because of its range of uses from healing wounds, decreasing pain, improving mood, and working as an antiseptic.
When infused in water and drank as a tea lavender can:
- Relax the nervous system
- Ease digestion
- Relieve stress
- Mild antidepressant effects
In fact, the Journal of Frontiers in Pharmacology published an article in 2017 exploring the pharmacological mechanisms of lavender on the central nervous system and found that it’s anti-depressant effects are linked to its ability to bind to specific receptors in the brain. The study goes on to discuss how lavender can modulate receptors including NDMA and SERT, which is attributed to those uplifting effects.
When used in aromatherapy it can:
- Relieve headaches
- Promote sleep and a restful state
- Ease exhaustion
- Decrease anxiety
Did you know that lavender could be used to ease anxiety without the common side effects associated with pharmaceuticals like tiredness? The Mental Health Clinician Journal published a recent study that proved that two specific terpenoid constituents in lavender, linalool and linalyl acetate, to be responsible for this relaxing benefits.
When used topically on the skin it can:
- Ease aches and pains
- Bug repellent
Did you know that mosquitoes and other arthropods do not like lavender essential oil? The Journal of BioMed Research International published an article in 2018 that concluded essential oils from plants should be considered as alternatives to synthetic repellents. Swap out your chemical based bug repellent like DEET for essential oils as an effective and natural repellent
When added to food is can:
- Add the perfect balance of sweet and floral notes
- Provide phytonutrients
- Vitamin A & minerals
- Easing stress and improving digestion.
Note: Make sure to use organic culinary lavender to your dishes
López, Víctor, et al. “Exploring Pharmacological Mechanisms of Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia) Essential Oil on Central Nervous System Targets.” Frontiers in Pharmacology, Frontiers Media S.A., 19 May 2017, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5437114/.
Malcolm, Benjamin J, and Kimberly Tallian. “Essential Oil of Lavender in Anxiety Disorders: Ready for Prime Time?” The Mental Health Clinician, College of Psychiatric & Neurologic Pharmacists, 26 Mar. 2018, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6007527/.
Lee, Mi Young. “Essential Oils as Repellents against Arthropods.” BioMed Research International, Hindawi, 2 Oct. 2018, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6189689/.