Monday, March 28, 2011

Lavender: What's the Big Deal?

Lavender this, lavender that.  Everything is lavender!  Sometimes it feels like overkill.

But is there something behind this?  Why is there lavender in everything?  What's so great about lavender?

Lavender essential oil is made up of a significant percentage of Esters and Monoterpenols.  Specifically, lavender is made up of linalyl acetate (almost 50%) and linalol (over 25%).  Both have been shown to be anti-inflammatory (Peana AT, D'Aquila PS, Panin F, Serra G, Pippia P, Moretti MD, "Anti-inflammatory activity of linalool and linalyl acetate constituents of essential oils." Sassari, Italy: Dipartimento di Scienze del Farmaco, Università degli Studi di Sassari, 2002).  Lavender essential oil has also been shown to be sedative (Buchbauer G, Jirovetz L, Jäger W, Dietrich H, Plank C., "Aromatherapy: evidence for sedative effects of the essential oil of lavender after inhalation." Austria: Institute of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of Vienna, 1991), analgesic (Gedney JJ, Glover TL, Fillingim RB, "Sensory and affective pain discrimination after inhalation of essential oils." Gainesville, Florida: Division of Public Health Services and Research, University of Florida College of Dentistry, 2004.), and anti-bacterial (Lodhia MH, Bhatt KR, Thaker VS, "Antibacterial activity of essential oils from palmarosa, evening primrose, lavender and tuberose." India: Department of Biosciences, Saurashtra University, 2009), among many other great properties.

AND, it smells great.  I have done extensive tests with my nose and certify this to be true.  So, don't discard lavender just because everyone else is using it.  There are many good reasons to keep some in your cabinet.

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