Saturday, February 8, 2014

Eucalyptus Facts and Benefits

Benefits
Eucalyptus oil comes from the dried leaves of the eucalyptus tree. The oil is a colorless liquid with a strong woody and sweet scent.  Sauna: Many people add eucalyptus oil to baths, spas and saunas because of its refreshing and antiseptic attributes. Most of the benefits of eucalyptus essential oil can be accessed through the vapor, as well as topical application or ingestion. Therefore, it is commonly used in aromatherapy, which is frequently included in spa treatment packages.



Arterial Vasodilator
Eucalyptus will help dilate the circulatory system, increasing circulation. Use 1 drop during massage over any area of concern.

Asthma
During an asthma attack, massage 1-2 drops over the chest. Also, inhale the aroma directly or diffuse in the air.

Brain Blood Flow
Diffuse throughout the home or classroom to increase circulation to the brain.

Bronchitis
Use topically or aromatically, massaging into the chest, back and throat, inhaling from the bottle, or dropping the oil on the shirt collar.

Congestion
Eucalyptus oil uses included clearly congestion from the airways. I recommend inhaling for nasal congestion and massaging the oil over all other affected areas.

Cooling
Yes, eucalyptus oil uses even include cooling the body down. Place several drops in a spray bottle, along with peppermint oil if you'd like some extra oomph, and spritz over the body.

Coughs
Diffuse throughout the room throughout the span of the illness, but also massage into the reflex points of the feet (follow the application guidelines in the link above), as well as over the chest, back, and throat.

Diabetes
Because of the vasodilation mention above, using eucalyptus on a daily basis can increase circulation, a common issue for diabetics. I recommend massaging it into the body with lotion after each shower, as the massage will also help increase circulation.

Disinfectant
Its antiviral and antibacterial properties naturally make cleaning among one of the eucalyptus oil uses. Follow this household cleaners guide for more information.

Emphysema
Eucalyptus oil uses are wonderful for all manner of respiratory disease. Diffuse the oil daily, massage 1 drop over the chest at least once a day, and another drop into the reflex points of the feet.

Expectorant
To help drain mucus from the lungs, massage 1 drop into the reflex points of the feet and apply another drop over the chest at least once a day (I'd personally do three times a day if no sensitivity is found).

Fever
Because eucalyptus oil uses include cooling the body (above), using during a high fever can help the body regulate its temperature and support its efforts in fighting infection.

Flu
Depending on your flu symptoms, eucalyptus oil uses will vary. You can apply to the abdomen to ease diarrhea, massage into aching joints and muscles, or simply diffuse through the air to fight infection.

Hypoglycemia
Another of eucalyptus oil uses, you can help regulate your blood sugar by massaging 1-2 drops into the soles of the feet daily.

Inflammation
Massage 1-2 drops over the afflicted area, always moving toward the heart to support the lymphatic system.

Iris Inflammation
While you should never put essential oils IN the eyes, massaging into the temples may support the irises.

Overexercised Muscles
Strain, fatigue, etc can all be treated with a gentle massage of eucalyptus oil. Always massage toward the heart to move the lactic acid buildup through the lymphatic system.

Pain
Depending on the type of pain, eucalyptus oil uses may necessitate application to the reflex points of the feet or directly over the area of concern.

Pneumonia
Help the lungs to clear by diffusing constantly and massaging directly over the lungs. It will also help to work eucalyptus into the reflex points of the hands and feet.

Respiratory Viruses
Fight viral infections by diffusing eucalyptus constantly during times of illness (read the application guide above for ideas on how).

Rhinitis
Reduce inflammation and open airways by inhaling directly from the bottle, massaging one drop over the sinuses, or applying as a hot compress.

Shingles
Eucalyptus oil uses include shingles for its antiviral properties, as well as its anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. Massage into the affected areas daily, add to a warm bath, or use a hot compress over the area.

Sinusitis
Apply as a hot compress over the sinuses and massage 1-2 drops into the reflex points of the feet (toes and pads of the feet). You can also inhale directly or diffuse throughout the room.

Wounds
Eucalyptus essential oil is a good antiseptic owing to its germicidal properties. On its exposure to air, ozone is formed which is a well-known antiseptic. Hence eucalyptus oil is used for healing wounds, ulcers, burns, cuts, abrasions and sores. It is also effective on insect bites and stings.


Other possible eucalyptus oil uses may include: acne treatment, endometriosis, herpes simplex (especially when combined with bergamot), hay fever, blood pressure regulation, and more things related to inflammation, bacterial or viral infection, and pain.  It cools the body in summer and protects the body in winter.



Household uses 
Add eucalyptus to homemade soaps. It is often found in toothpastes, detergents, and mouthwash. Use it for pet care, such as a flea deterrent for dogs. 



Add eucalyptus oil to saunas, spas, and bathtubs to disinfect and refresh. Use to disinfect and deodorize rooms. 

Sauna: Many people add eucalyptus oil to baths, spas and saunas due to its refreshing and antiseptic effect.
Usage of eucalyptus oil in aromatherapy is increasing gradually as it also blends well with many other essential oils including thyme essential oil, rosemary essential oil, marjoram essential oil, lavender essential oil, cedarwood essential oil, frankincenseessential oil, etc.


Room freshener: The antiseptic and deodorant nature of eucalyptus oil makes it a perfect room freshener for hospitals and sickbed atmosphere. It also kills bacteria and germs in the air and hence keeps the room environment clean.

Remove tar from clothes or skin harmlessly with this oil as well.

Exceptional germ killer

The most commonly used oil for aromatherapy is eucalyptus globulus, with a strong, camphor-like scent. Others have basically the same traits but are slightly more gentle and include eucalyptus radiata, eucalyptus smithii and eucalyptus citriodora. Whichever species you have or can find, eucalyptus essential oil has especially powerful germicidal properties. For example, place a two percent mixture in an aroma burner to kill 70 percent of staphylococcus bacteria in a room. Another example: researchers in India found eucalyptus to be effective against several strains of E. coli.  




Facts

Eucalyptus near Augusta;Western Australia 

Eucalyptus /ˌjuːkəˈlɪptəs is a diverse genus of flowering trees and shrubs (including a distinct group with a multiple-stem mallee growth habit) in the myrtle family, Myrtaceae. Members of the genus dominate the tree flora of Australia. There are more than 700 species of eucalyptus, mostly native to Australia, and a very small number are found in adjacent areas of New Guinea and Indonesia. One species, Eucalyptus deglupta, ranges as far north as the Philippines. Only fifteen species occur outside Australia, with just nine of these not occurring in Australia. Species of eucalyptus are cultivated widely in the tropical and temperate world, including the Americas, Europe, Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East, China and the Indian Subcontinent, though most species do not tolerate frost.

Some eucalyptus species have attracted attention from horticulturists, global development researchers and environmentalists because of desirable traits such as being fast-growing sources of wood, producing oil that can be used for cleaning and as a natural insecticide, or an ability to be used to drain swamps and thereby reduce the risk of malaria. Outside their natural ranges, eucalyptus are both lauded for their beneficial economic impact on poor populations and criticized for being "water-guzzling" aliens, leading to controversy over their total impact.


On warm days eucalyptus forests are sometimes shrouded in a smog-like mist of vaporized volatile organic compounds (terpenoids); the Australian Blue Mountains take their name from the haze.


Nearly all eucalyptus are evergreen but some tropical species lose their leaves at the end of the dry season. As in other members of the myrtle family, eucalyptus leaves are covered with oil glands. The copious oils produced are an important feature of the genus. Although mature Eucalyptus trees are usually towering and fully leafed, their shade is characteristically patchy because the leaves usually hang downwards.

The most readily recognizable characteristics of eucalyptus species are the distinctive flowers and fruit (capsules or "gumnuts"). 



Eucalyptus pauciflora are frost intolerant, capable of withstanding cold and frost down to about 
−20 °C (−4 °F)


Most eucalyptus are not tolerant of frost, or only tolerate light frosts down to −5 °C (23 °F); the hardiest are the so-called snow gums, such as Eucalyptus pauciflora, which is capable of withstanding cold and frost down to about −20 °C (−4 °F). Two subspecies, E. pauciflora subsp. niphophila and E. pauciflora subsp. debeuzevillei in particular are even hardier and can tolerate even quite severe winters. Several other species, especially from the high plateau and mountains of central Tasmania such as Eucalyptus coccifera, Eucalyptus subcrenulata and Eucalyptus gunnii, have also produced extreme cold-hardy forms and it is seed procured from these genetically hardy strains that are planted for ornament in colder parts of the world.


Phascolarctos cinereus (koala) ready to eat Eucalyptus leaves

An essential oil extracted from eucalyptus leaves contains compounds that are powerful natural disinfectants and can be toxic in large quantities. Several marsupial herbivores, notably koalas and some possums, are relatively tolerant of it. The close correlation of these oils with other more potent toxins called formylated phloroglucinol compounds (euglobals, macrocarpals and sideroxylonals) allows koalas and other marsupial species to make food choices based on the smell of the leaves. For koalas, these compounds are the most important factor in leaf choice.

Sugar glider drinking nectar of the Eucalyptus ptychocarpa

Eucalyptus flowers produce a great abundance of nectar, providing food for many pollinators including insects, birds, bats and possums. Although eucalyptus trees are seemingly well-defended from herbivores by the oils and phenolic compounds, they have insect pests. These include the eucalyptus longhorn borer Phoracantha semipunctata and the aphid-like psyllids known as "bell lerps", both of which have become established as pests throughout the world wherever eucalypts are cultivated.

Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil is readily steam distilled from the leaves and can be used for cleaning and as an industrial solvent, as an antiseptic, for deodorising, and in very small quantities in food supplements, especially sweets, cough drops, toothpaste and decongestants. It has insect repellent properties and is an active ingredient in some commercial mosquito repellents. Eucalyptus globulus is the principal source of eucalyptus oil worldwide.


Eucalyptus Honey.  The nectar of some eucalyptus produces high-quality monofloral honey.


Dyeing using eucalyptus.

All parts of Eucalyptus may be used to make dyes that are substantive on protein fibers (such as silk and wool), simply by processing the plant part with water. Colors to be achieved range from yellow and orange through green, tan, chocolate and deep rust red. The material remaining after processing can be safely used as mulch or fertilizer.


One way in which the eucalyptus, mainly the blue gum E. globulus, proved valuable in California was in providing windbreaks for highways, orange groves, and other farms in the mostly treeless central part of the state. They are also admired as shade and ornamental trees in many cities and gardens.

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