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Once upon a time, the most common strategy for weight loss promoted restricting your food intake with low-calorie diets. Who knew, despite the promises for beach-ready bodies, that restrictive dieting could actually mess with your brain? With a strict schedule of things like plain celery and unsweetened yogurt, these diets promised great results … and occasionally delivered (in the short term)—just to pile on the pounds afterward in a never-ending rebound battle.
We were all casualties of this faulty dieting culture and it’s taken a couple of frustrating decades to figure out what went wrong. Experts now recommend a new, healthier (and slower) approach to weight management called intuitive eating. It may not seem sexy, but it’s a promising approach, and the health benefits of essential oils can assist you in finding success, stability and body satisfaction with this new strategy.
Intuitive eating isn’t a diet … and in fact thoroughly rejects dieting culture. But the idea of intuitive eating has a lot of nutrition experts, body coaches, and normal folk with a bit of extra weight interested in knowing more. Intuitive eating means honoring your hunger by giving your body adequate energy. With healthy habits and mindfulness, this approach strives to help you to avoid the primal drive in your brain that causes you—sooner or later—to overeat after skipping too many meals.
When you eat in a way that brings you pleasure, you feel satisfied and content. Creating this experience for yourself more often helps you to decide that you’ve had enough. Using an essential oils diffuser during meals can help you to slow down and savor the experience. Also, diffusing certified organic Grapefruit, Cinnamon Bark and Fennel will fill your senses with joy and long-term satiation.
Making Peace with Your Body and Mind
Eating intuitively encourages peace with food. It means ending self-imposed restrictions and strict “off-limits” categories. This sort of thinking, experts say, leads to feelings of deprivation that cause you to lose control. Quit classifying yourself as “good” when you deprive yourself, or “bad” if you indulge. Instead, just listen for signals in your body that tell you when you are no longer hungry. Observe the subtle signs communicating that you are comfortably full.
Find ways to comfort, nurture, entertain and resolve emotional issues without using food. This is where essential oils can also be a powerful ally. Do essential oils actually work for this purpose? Boredom, anger, loneliness and anxiety each have their own emotional source that food won’t fix. You can use aromatherapy to help you deal with the root of these emotions and fill your senses with deep satisfaction.
When you use an intuitive eating framework, you work to accept your body for what it is and strive for a realistic potential. Feel good about who you are, rather than motivating yourself by being critical, demanding or insulting. Don’t exercise like a robot. Shift your focus to how it feels to move your body, rather than the calories you are burning. You don’t have to eat a perfect diet or look a certain way, to be a healthy person. It’s what you do and what you eat, consistently over the long term, that matters.
You probably won’t be surprised to hear that exercise is good for your body. Regular physical activity keeps your weight at healthy levels, maintains muscle mass, and keeps joints and tendons comfortably flexible as you age. But, did you also know that exercise is good for your mental health too? Regular exercise benefits your brain, especially when you combine good physical habits with powerful aromatherapy practices targeted toward whole-body wellness.
When you make an effort to keep your body active, it’s not a coincidence that you feel less anxious, less stressed and generally happier. Exercise releases dopamine, changes the stress hormones in your bloodstream and eases feelings of anxiety. But you can enjoy even more benefits from your exercise routine with the synergistic benefits of essential oil aromatherapy. Here is how to use essential oils health benefits to augment that happy-brain effect.
The key to long-term fitness is to do it often … even on cold, dark winter mornings when you really don’t feel like getting out of bed. Help yourself by creating a pre-workout routine using N8 Essential’s certified organic Energize Blend. This mix of bright citrus oils and energizing natural peppermint oil will get your muscles and mind in the right state to rock your sweat session. Diffuse a few drops of Energize Blend for 30 minutes before your workout to ease your body into activity, and you’ll likely feel more energized when you step off the treadmill as when you put that first groggy foot on the floor for the morning.
Turning Up the Intensity
It’s not until you get really moving that your body begins to release dopamine, a chemical that plays a key role in mental balance and whole-body happiness. As we age, we lose some of our natural stores of dopamine—but these can be replaced during any form of exercise in what is termed as a “runner’s high.” You can reach this natural state of euphoria faster by warming your muscles with a dilution of certified organic eucalyptus essential oil. The sweet honey-and-mint scent of this oil offers your body a natural boost to help you reach peak performance more efficiently.
Athletes and medical advice both say that allowing time for your muscles to recover between hard-core exercise is almost important as the exercise itself. Help your muscles and mind ease into recovery mode with the mellow floral-wood spice of certified organic lavender essential oil. Rub a dilution deep into muscles and joints for feelings of relief from soreness and stress. And breathe the sweet scent to help wind down emotionally after an especially intense session.
So the next time you’re feeling down, stressed or anxious, use the power of aromatherapy to get off the couch and get some exercise. You’ll not only feel more energized and calm — you’ll be a healthier and happier person. Whether you’re an ultra-marathon guru or a fresh Zumba recruit, everybody could use a little support to take their exercise efforts to the next level.
Your nose is underrated, according to science. Besides being an excellent way to identify wet dog and wasabi, your olfactory sense is a direct path to your brain—emotions, memories, even the chemical toolbox your brain uses to keep your body healthy. Research has shown that childhood memories linked to scent stay with you throughout life. That means the smell of woodsmoke or the sweet tang of orange peel can pull you back to experiences and emotions across decades of time—and this mental shortcut can be used as a safe, easy-to-use form of alternative medicine.
When you understand the biophysical mechanics behind aromatherapy, it makes sense that this process has an outsized physical and psychological impact using just your sense of smell. From perceptions of physical pain to emotional catharsis, studies have shown that aromatherapy offers multiple powerful health benefits, including:
Aromatherapy works by stimulating smell receptors in the nose, which sends messages through the nervous system to the limbic system — the part of the brain that controls emotions. By tapping into this master control system, numerous serious health problems can be eased and mental/emotional challenges can be alleviated.
One of the biggest advantages of essential oil aromatherapy is that anyone with a good sense of smell can give it a go. When used as recommended, the vast majority of essential oils are both safe and easy to use. We suggest starting with a simple experiment … breathe the scent of an essential oil directly from the bottle. Take note of how you feel, and how your body reacts over the next several hours. When you find an oil you like, you can also get efficient exposure to using an ultrasonic diffuser. These simple devices use tap water and a few drops of essential oil to fill a room with aromatherapy mist. They also offer the advantage of allowing you to easily blend two or more of your favorite oils for a synergistic effect.
When first experimenting with aromatherapy, begin by looking at an essential oil uses chart to determine what kind of results you want for your body. Is your goal deeper relaxation? Try N8 Essentials certified organic Lavender essential oil. Do you need energy late in the day? Go for our certified organic Orange or Peppermint essential oils. Each N8 product has a nuanced aromatherapy effect—Eucalyptus offers warm focus, Geranium brings a tension-busting emotional calm. The essential oil that will work best for your body depends both on your physical chemistry and your mental association with that particular scent. So jump in and begin experimenting with essential oil aromatherapy … it’s a sweet and comforting way to practice natural self-care for both your body and your mind.
Essential oils have been used for health and healing for more than 6,000 years. Dating back as far as 4500BC, ancient Egypt, Greece, Persia, and other regions were renowned for their aromatic oils. Today, essential oils are commonly used in therapeutic baths, aromatherapy, topical lotions, and various health remedies. Essential oils are concentrated oils derived from the distillation of leaves, flowers, stems, bark and the roots of plants.
The majority of essential oils are clear in color but some have an amber tone such as lemongrass, patchouli, and orange. Likewise, the colors of some oils are light green, yellow and even dark blue. For the most part, essential oils are used externally as in aromatherapy or topically. However, some oils can be taken orally with specialized instructions.
Balancing moods, boosting energy levels, helping with sleep problems, relieving pain, nausea and stress, even easing certain skin issues like eczema and dry skin. In truth, the benefits of essential oils are wide-ranging in part because they contain many medicinal properties. Aromatherapy alone can be effective in treating psychological, physical and aesthetic conditions like acne and aging skin. Several essential oils have been shown to have antifungal and antiseptic properties that can be used for cuts, as a disinfectant and for other skin conditions. Additionally, some oils have been known to ease pain and reduce inflammation.
Of the many essential oils available, you’ll want to keep these in your medicine cabinet.
Lavender – relieves stress and anxiety, induces sleep, helps heal wounds
Orange – a strong antibacterial, great for acne, kills candida yeast
Lemon – improves digestion, relieves nausea, promotes weight loss, reduces acne
Tea Tree – an antiseptic for infections, athlete’s foot, bites, stings, lice, eczema, psoriasis
Eucalyptus – antiseptic, stimulate cardiac activity, relieve fevers (applied topically)
Peppermint – improves digestion, aids in nausea, respiratory issues and stomach problems
One of the best ways to enjoy essential oils is by diffusing them with a diffuser. This type of aromatherapy has a wide variety of health benefits when used properly. Some of the most effective aromatic scents to diffuse include:
Lavender – relaxing, lowers blood pressure
Cedarwood – calming, relaxing, helps with sleep
Peppermint – comforting and energizing, improves memory
Lemongrass – insect repellent, lower anxiety, alleviate stress
Lemon – improves mood, promotes well-being, increases energy
Frankincense – refreshes a room, relieves stress, reduces negative emotions
Cinnamon Bark – stimulates circulation, reduces irritability, increases concentration
One of the most popular and leading essential oils is CBD. Broad-spectrum CBD oil is one version composed of many parts of the hemp plant but contains no THC (it is non-psychoactive). As of late, there are over 20,000 published studies about CBD and its medical (health) benefits. Equally, cannabinoids for pets are now specially prepared to safely allow your animal to experience the benefits CBD.
When it comes to choosing an essential oil brand, you want the very best. But frankly, not all essential oils are created equal. At N8 Essentials, all of our essential oils are certified organic, so you know you’re getting the safest and most pure product on the market. Nevertheless, there are certain elements to look for and some very important features to consider before selecting a product.
Check for purity and quality. Although there is no standard definition for “pure”, the quality of the oil pertains to many factors. Look for a company that has high standards and uses certified organic oils. The making of the oil will often be monitored from start to finish, for example.
We pick our ingredients from a variety of high-integrity sources. Our essential oils are USDA certified organic. Essential oils with the USDA certified organic seal are the only essentials oils that have any oversight, regulation controls and protecting the environment protocols in place that includes the condition of the soil prior to planting all the way through to bottling. They are free of harmful pesticides and chemicals and are therefore the only essential oils available that protect the earth and the farmer, as well as having complete peace of mind in quality control.
Essential oils have been used for thousands of years as a natural and safe solution for health and wellness. But it is always advised to talk to a healthcare professional before using products that you are unfamiliar with. Again, not all oils are created equal. Using oils that contain the best and most organic processes and ingredients (like N8 Essentials) is what you’ll want to locate.
Whether you are brand new to essential oils, or maybe they’re already a part of your daily routine, we’d love for you to see the benefits of high quality, certified organic essential oils. There is so much to learn about them and the rewards they can bring to you and your family. The possibilities are limitless.
If you’ve ever shared a house with a teenager (bless you and your cardiovascular health), then you’ll understand the challenge of trying and getting their lanky, unreasonably long limbs untangled from blankets and balanced on their colossal feet before noon. Medical professionals know that kids need more sleep … and parents know that teenagers often choose not to get it. It can make weekday mornings something of a challenge for families … especially in winter, when shorter days keep it dark many mornings and 7 a.m. still feels like the dead of night.
Good habits can help teens wake up and (here’s the key) stay awake in the morning. A regular bedtime, banning screens from the bedroom, and a healthy breakfast will give you a good start … and essential oil diffusion can be an important part of the routine. N8 Essential’s certified organic Energize Blend is a sweet combination of premier natural constituents designed to work on both a physical and mental level to naturally wake up body and brain. And, the great thing about this sweet blend is that you don’t necessarily have to be in your teenager’s face for them to enjoy the benefits. Placing a few personal care products in their stumbling path every morning can do the trick … Energize Blend infused shampoo, conditioner, body wash and lotion all offer the sweet natural energy found in these essential oils while your teenagers do what they do in the bathroom every morning … for an unreasonably long time.
Or, if you feel like getting more in their face for some morning attitude adjustment, there is a way to do that too. Diffuse a few drops of Energize Blend combined with certified organic clary sage and a drop or two of certified organic frankincense in their bedroom in the morning. The Energize Blend helps body and brain to move to a higher level of alertness, the organic clary sage works to balance and lift the mood, and grounding organic frankincense helps the aromatherapy effect to last beyond the first bell of the morning.
There is no guarantee that using Energize essential oil blend around your teen will mean they’ll save you any hot water this week, but at least they’ll have a smile on their face while they use it up.
Teenage Sunshine Energy Recipe
4 drops certified organic Energize Blend
1 drop certified organic clary sage
2 drops certified organic frankincense
Combine all oils in a diffuser with room temperature water. This “spiked” blend recipe adds mood balance and grounded mental resilience to the sweet and uplifting blend found in the Energize Blend. Mist in the morning for a positive attitude and energy, or use anytime your teenager needs an adjustment of attitude or a positive outlook.
Who doesn’t love the young, silky-smooth feeling of your hands, elbows, feet and face after a gentle and thorough exfoliating scrub. It’s like the process uncovers the glamorous china-sleek model skin you’ve had hiding underneath your whole life. But even I have to admit that I often skip this step during my ten-minute bathroom rush in the morning … it feels like too much of a luxury to fit exfoliation into my everyday self-care routine.
But then I learned about sugar scrub bars. Sugar scrub bars are an incredibly easy and healthy way to get access to essential oil exfoliation on a daily basis. They are a (basically) effortless way to keep my skin smooth and looking healthy and young. Using them gives you beneficial exposure to your favorite essential oils and helps to work their healthy constituents past the first layer of dead skin cells for better absorption.
You can buy sugar scrub bars … but why would you? They are easy and inexpensive to make, and when you create them yourself, you have control over the ingredients and essential oils that you add to the mix. In the spirit of the season, I made my last batch with certified organic peppermint essential oil. But you can use any combination of
essential oils that benefit the skin and smell nice (or not).
To make them, melt ½ cup melt-and-pour soap (available online or from craft-supply stores) in a double boiler or covered in a microwave on 15-second intervals. Mix in ¼ cup coconut oil until combined and add 4 drops of certified organic peppermint essential oil (or essential oil of your choice). At this point, you can add a natural food coloring if you want the soap to have a nice color, or leave it natural, which some people prefer. Combine 1 cup sugar to the mix until you have a thick consistency. Pour into a silicone mold, or even a heat-resistant ice cube tray and let cool for two hours. It’s that easy to get everyday exfoliation backed up by the power of essential oils.
When the weather turns cool and the sun drops below the horizon earlier every evening, who doesn’t love the warm ambiance of a flickering candle and the sweet natural scent of essential oils? Combining essential oils with soy candles gives them a clean, warm, nurturing scent. Soy wax is simple to work with, easy to melt, and a cinch to clean up … all of which makes these candles a good candidate for a simple DIY project at home. Essential oil scented soy candles also make great personalized gifts for family and friends. To begin, you’ll need a few supplies:
How to make your candle:
Experiment with the types and amount of essential oils you add to find the scent you prefer. Great combinations include certified organic bergamot and clove, or certified organic lavender and vetiver. Or, just add on of N8 Essential’s pre-mixed blends for a balanced and supportive aromatherapy experience. But don’t go too crazy … soy wax candles won’t solidify properly if you add too much essential oil. If you struggle with the texture of the wax, you can purchase an optional product called palm stearic, which will help your candle achieve the correct texture, even with extra essential oil.
With so many delicious scents to choose from, you’ll be able to craft a candle that creates ambiance and aromatherapy benefits that meet your needs.
Whether you are a diamond diva or a low-maintenance mama, investing in the health of your skin with regular care not only protects this important part of your body from the harsh effects of the environment but keeps you looking and feeling your best. The key to resilient skin is understanding what your skin needs and treating it well.
The easiest way to approach a daily skin regime is to think of it like this – in the morning skincare should focus on prevention and protection for the day. Your routine at night should be centered around cleansing and repair.
You really only need to cleanse your skin once in a day – unless you work something like construction or are raising a toddler, and then all bets are off. For the rest of you, just rinse your face with warm water in the morning before applying moisturizer and sunscreen. At night, after a full day of wind and dirt, more dedicated care is required. Wash your face with a cleanser to remove dirt, excess oils and makeup. If you choose, you can then use a toner, an exfoliant, and serums. Always end with a good, mild moisturizing lotion containing the essential oils that work best for your skin.
When refining your routine for your skin, consider the following:
Here’s a tough question to pose to yourself – can your body get through the day on its own reserves? Or do you routinely rely on outside stimulation … sugar and caffeine … to make it through to evening? If you’ve come to rely on outside crutches to muscle through your day, you need to ask yourself why? If you are eating a healthy diet, exercising, and getting enough sleep, why do you need to ingest inauthentic and unhealthy boosts just to have enough energy to make it to evening on a routine basis?
You aren’t alone. Many people get into bad habits to coax their physical or mental motivation through a routine. I’ve known several teachers that consider a giant diet soft drink after lunch a prerequisite for the job. And I spent several years with a jar of candy beside my desk to motivate me through long afternoons. But the truth is, although these habits don’t cause immediate harm to your physical or mental wellbeing, they aren’t especially good for you either.
Caffeine is, after all, a drug. Consuming too much can lead to insomnia, nervousness, restlessness, irritability, an upset stomach, a fast heartbeat and even muscle tremors. And refined sugar, although a sweet and welcome treat on occasion, carries empty calories and a host of other undesirable consequences for the body, including weight gain and blood sugar issues in the long term.
There is a healthier option to get yourself through a long day without resorting to caffeine or sugar for an afternoon pick-me-up. Essential oil aromatherapy can work on a natural and beneficial level to help you feel alert, energized, focused and motivated … without the empty calories or the effect of drugs. And, it comes from a completely natural source. N8 Essentials offers the Energize Blend, which is a sweet combination of certified organic citrus and mint essential oils specially designed to help you access the natural energy that is already in your body. It’s easy to use, and better for you than other less-than-healthy habits.
Try diffusing the Energize Blend in the afternoon when you need renewed feelings of motivation or focus. Open the lid and breathe it directly from the bottle, or access its beneficial constituents through our creamy Energize Lotion that comes infused with the delicious and motivating scent for a more discreet aromatherapy experience. If you have space, add this sweet scent to a diffuser to fill your room with an energizing and focusing ambiance that can carry you through to the evening, and even help you to look forward to tackling tomorrow.
Sometimes it’s your turn on center stage, spotlight firmly shining on your smiling face. Other times it feels right to take a more subtle approach – hanging out in the orchestra pit, for instance, or in the concession stand. Ultrasonic diffusers are a “center stage” method of dispersing essential oils. These beautiful and showy electronic products usually are designed with attention-getting glam and a geyser of mist to draw the eye. But there are also more subtle … but no less beneficial … ways of getting essential oils into the air around your family at home and at work.
The word “diffuse” simply means to spread a concentrated substance over a larger area. With essential oils, there are a few great ways to do this:
Cotton balls and cotton cloth are a great way to slowly diffuse essential oils without using a diffuser. Put a few drops of your favorite single or blend essential oil onto a plain cotton ball. Place the infused ball into a fan vent in your car, near an air conditioning vent at home, in the bathroom with the fan going or near your face as you sleep. Any air in motion will flow through, subtly diffusing the scent. How long it lasts will depend on how many drops you use and how quickly the air moves through the fibers.
Unfinished wood is another great medium to disperse essential oils in a room without requiring an electrical outlet. Some people use teakwood or reed diffusing sticks dipped in a container of full-strength essential oil to fill their room for aromatherapy benefits. Another method relies a natural medium … pinecones. To try this, place clean pine cones in a resealable plastic bag and sprinkle with drops of the essential oil single or blend of your choice. N8 Essential’s certified organic Energize Blend and Tranquil Blend are great candidates for this craft. Or try certified organic eucalyptus and cinnamon bark for a seasonal ambiance. Seal the bag and gently shake to disperse. Leave the cones in a bag, sealed for up to a week, to allow the fragrance to penetrate the wood. Use as a beautiful and deliciously scented home accent or share them as a personalized gift. Remember to store them in a sealed bag when not in use to extend the scent.
Terracotta pendants worn as a necklace are an affordable alternative to a diffuser. Essential oils are applied to the pendant and become absorbed into the clay. The scent slowly diffuses into the air as you breathe and it is a portable and personalized alternative to topical use.