Nutritional Health and Well-Being of Infants and Babies

The Nutritional Responsibility of Parents

The first five years of life is a crucial period in the development of infants. Infancy is a time of rapid growth. Babies grow and develop at an extraordinary rate. To help them in this process, proper nutrition is the key responsibility of the parents. Feeding BabyParents play an important role in the mental, emotional, and physical development of infant/baby. They are responsible for the health and well-being of the infant. Infants need to be cared for and receive enough affection from others around them so that they can grow up to be stable, well-adjusted human beings. Nutritional health and well-being of infants and babies is of primary concern.

Infant Playing in Grass

In an article written by the Urban Child Institute (2011) titled “Nutrition and Early Brain Development,”  it states that “Nutrition has been called the single greatest environmental influence on babies in the womb and during infancy, and it remains essential throughout the first years of life.”  The parents or primary careproviders are solely responsible.

Which Nutrients are Essential to Infant Health?

BreastfeedingWithout a doubt, no parent will argue that a proper and balanced nutritional diet is critical in brain and physical development of infants and babies. Essential nutrients for babies include, but are not limited, to the following:

  1. folic acid
  2. zinc
  3. healthy fats
  4. protein
  5. iron
  6. vitamins


Which Foods and How Often?

Babies and infants must consume appropriate amounts and types of foods to receive required nutrients. Infants eat much more often in a day compared to adults because they require the nutrients every few hours.

Breastfeeding is a common practice in the first few months of life. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that mothers breastfeed for at least the first six months of the baby’s life.

After this time period, the baby can start to eat soft foods, known as the BRAT diet:

  1. Bananas
  2. Rice
  3. Applesauce
  4. Toast, or soft pieces of bread

BRAT Diet

Also during this stage in the baby’s development, he/she will want to explore other foods that taste different than his/her mother’s breast milk.

Tips for Buying or Preparing Baby Food

Homemade baby food VS store-bought baby food is a hot topic when it comes to good parenting. Parents have the right to choose what kinds of food their baby eats, and where the food comes from. Some parents prefer to buy fruits and vegetables from the grocery store and make their own baby food. Other parents prefer to buy baby food in a jar at the grocery store.Infant Babyfood

Whether you are planning on making your own baby food or buying prepared foods, Mayo Clinic (2013) provides some tips that may prove to be helpful:

  • Make baby food from freshly prepared ingredients, such as tender meats, lentils, beans, fresh or frozen cooked vegetables, and ripe fruits. Avoid canned products with added salt.Vegetables
  • Cook, puree or mash, and then freeze in small containers, such as ice cube trays or mini muffin cups. Reheat thoroughly and then let the food cool so it is warm to the touch when you’re ready to feed it to your baby.
  • When choosing commercially prepared baby foods, stick to the single ingredient types as they are more nutritionally dense than the mixed dinner meals.

Homemade VS Store-Bought Baby Food

In truth, there are advantages and disadvantages to homemade baby food and store-bought baby food. Baby WatermelonThe advantages for parents who make their own baby food are the following::

  • Parents know exactly what their baby is eating. They can include organic ingredients in the food which is free from pesticide residue.
  • Parents can be creative about making the baby food. They can add the flavors they choose, which may or may not be found in standard grocery stores.
  • It may be cheaper to make the food instead of purchasing it at the store.

The disadvantages to making homemade baby food include, but are not limited, to the following:

  • Homemade baby food spoils at a faster rate than store bought baby food.
  • Homemade baby foods also need to refrigerated, which can take up a lot of space.
  • Homemade baby food takes a great deal of time to make.

Small child eatingThe advantages to buying store bought baby food are convenience and food safety. It is simply much easier to buy pre-packaged baby food that doesn’t spoil quickly. Baby food is starting to be packaged in pouches which means that they are lighter and won’t break when they are dropped as opposed to glass jars. Baby food is strictly regulating by the United States Food & Drug Administration. In fact, any food made for solely for infants and/or babies is put to higher standards because of the target consumers.

The disadvantages to purchasing store-bought baby food is the nutritional value of the food compared to homemade baby food. There may be added sugars or corn syrup in prepared foods. It is important that the parents who decide to raise their baby on store-bought food read the labels on the jars very carefully.

Concerns and Warnings

It is important to not to introduce the following foods to your baby or infant child’s diet, until after one year of age:

  1. honey
  2. dairy
  3. eggs
  4. strawberries
  5. tomatoes
  6. citrus
  7. nuts

HoneyHoney can contain botulinum spores, which may cause infant botulism due to the immature digestive tracts of babies. However, honey is harmless to older children and adults.  The other foods (dairy, eggs, strawberries, tomatoes, citrus and nuts) are common allergy triggers.  Introducing these foods at a later age would minimize the effects of allergens later in life.

Babies under one year of age are more susceptible to infection, inflammation and illness, so it is also very important to sterilize cooking utensils when preparing and storing homemade baby food, and to wash hands thoroughly, and keep the preparation area (countertops, sink, stovetop, etc.) clean to prevent cross-contamination.

Summary and Conclusions

At the end of the day, there really is no right or wrong option for purchasing baby food. Parents have to decide which option is the most appropriate and beneficial for their lifestyle.Brothers As long as the infant/baby receives an adequate amount of essential nutrients from the food the he or she consumes, the parent should take comfort in knowing that they are doing right by their baby.

References

American Academy of Pediatrics. (2015). AAP Policy on Breastfeeding. Breastfeeding Initiatives.  Retrieved June 13, 2015

Healthy Child: Healthy World. (2015). Food. Healthy Living. Retrieved June 13, 2015

Livestrong.org. (2013). Food to Make My Baby Gain Weight. Retrieved June 10, 2015

Mayo Clinic. (2013). Homemade Baby food: What are the Benefits? Nutrition and healthy eating. Retrieved June 12, 2015

Urban Child Institute. (2011). Nutrition and Early Brain Development. Updates. Retrieved June 12, 2013

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This articleHang Pham, MBHA Health Educator is written by Hang Pham. Hang Pham is a Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance Health and Wellness Educator. Hang Pham was born in Hoc Mon, Vietnam. She came to America in 1994, becoming a U.S. citizen in 2011. Hang graduated from Seaside High School with diploma and received her AA in General Studies from Monterey Peninsula College in 2011. She received her BA in Collaborative Health and Human Services from California State University Monterey Bay (CSUMB) in 2012. In addition to working as a volunteer staff with the Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance, she currently works as a Clerical Aid in the Human Resources Department of Salinas City Hall. The Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance is a registered 501 (c) 3 nonprofit health and wellness education organization. For more information about the Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance contact us or visit our website at www.montereybayholistic.com.   All images are copyright free, from www.pixabay.com unless otherwise noted.

Disclaimer:  The Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance is a charitable, independent registered nonprofit 501(c)3 organization and does not endorse any particular products or practices. We exist as an educational organization dedicated to providing free access to health education resources, products and services. Claims and statements herein are for informational purposes only and have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The statements about organizations, practitioners, methods of treatment, and products listed on this website are not meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This information is intended for educational purposes only. The MBHA strongly recommends that you seek out your trusted medical doctor or practitioner for diagnosis and treatment of any existing health condition.

Acidic or Alkaline – What Is pH Maintenance and Why Should It Matter?

 What is Potential Hydrogen or pH?

There is a lot of information regarding bodily health in terms of how acidic or how alkaline our bodies are.Firstly, pH stands for ‘potential hydrogen’ and it gets its name from the way solutions on the pH scale are tested. Eating appleThe pH scale tests show a degree of concentration of hydrogen ions in a substance or solution and this degree results in a rating between 0-14 with 0 being the most acidic substances (battery acid, sulphuric acid) and 14 being the most alkaline substances (calcium, bleach). One thing to note is that the scale is logarithmic; meaning each distance between numbers is to the power of 10.


Why Does pH Need to Stay in Balan
ce?

The human body is a master at balancing all our necessary pH’s and it’s quite a task when you consider the various acids, liquids, cells, and fluids our body contains and how they all require different pH levels!

Compartment pH
Gastric Acid 1
Lysosomes 4.5
Granules of Chromaffin Cells 5.5
Human Skin 5.5
Urine 6
Neutral H2O at 37 degrees Celsius 6.81
Cytosol 7.2
Cerebrospinal Fluid 7.3
Blood 7.43-7.45
Mitochondrial Matrix 7.5
Pancreas Secretions 8.1

Looking at the chart above, you can get an idea of our complex and widely differing requirements. If our blood pH gets too far out of range, our bodies will go into a coma as a result. But long before that happens, the body will work to maintain the ideal pH of blood because blood is the substance in our bodies that maintain homeostasis. Your brain will even alter its pH to prioritize the blood pH.

How the Body Maintains pH Level

There are “buffers”, so to speak, that alkalize blood when it becomes too acidic and vice versa. When our blood becomes too acidic, our bodies buffer that change by alkalizing the blood with minerals. Our kidneys also regulate our urine by releasing excess acid while simultaneously storing acid to release back into the blood when necessary. Our lungs work constantly to bring in oxygen, which is alkalizing, and release carbon dioxide, which is acidic.

Woman Man Anatomy

Maintaining body pH is something that we largely do not play a conscious role in. As a rule of thumb, our bodies know what they need. Many times we think our bodies are malfunctioning when really, they are trying to indicate a problem. If we could understand the underlying problem instead of trying to quiet the symptoms, we might find that the discomfort we were upset over was a clue that helped us achieve complete health.

How We Interfere with Maintaining pH Levels

So now we understand that our bodies regulate themselves, so let’s take a look at how we aid or interfere with their efforts to keep us neutral, overall. While it’s very difficult for us to alter the ideal pH of our blood, our choices in foods can wear down those “buffers” that were previously mentioned. For instance, if we are causing our blood to be too “acid” our body will pull minerals from our food to alkalize the blood.Drink and SnacksBut if we are not receiving enough minerals through our diet, our body has to find minerals elsewhere to alkalize the blood. Unfortunately this means pulling those minerals from our bones, joints, and wherever the body can find what it needs. This is a survival mechanism that can cause serious problems over time.

How to Determine pH Levels of Foods

Below you will find a comprehensive guide to the rankings of various foods on the pH scale. It’s a good visual to understand that not all types of foods are created equal. You will find different types of vegetables and nuts all across the pH scale.Not all types of foods are created equal, and vary in their alkaline or acid levels.  You will find different types of vegetables and nuts all across the pH scale. Celery has a pH of 10, while sweet potatoes have a pH of 5. Raw almonds have a pH of 8, while peanuts have a pH of 4.

FOOD TYPES pH 
ALKALINE FOODS
1000 x More Alkaline – high alkaline ionized water,  raw spinach, raw  broccoli, artichokes, raw asparagus, red cabbage, raw celery, collard greens, raw kale, dandelion, seaweeds, lemons & limes, rhubarb stalks, pure soy lecithin, alfalfa grass, barley grass, wheat grass black radish, soy sprouts, chia sprouts

10.0  

100 x More Alkaline – avocados, borage oil, green tea, most lettuce, raw zucchini, red radish, red beets, raw tomato, french beans, parsley-cilantro, raw peas, raw eggplant, alfalfa sprouts, green beans, beet greens, garlic or chives, dog/shave grass, lemon grass, cayenne pepper  9.0
10 x More Alkaline – Brussels sprouts, endive, green cabbage, cooked spinach, cooked broccoli, cooked asparagus, lima beans, soy beans – fresh, navy beans, cooked peas, cooked eggplant, sour grapefruit, raw almonds, wild rice, quinoa, millet, flax seed oil, coconut water, chicory, olives, bell peppers, watercress, white radish, lamb’s lettuce  8.0
NEUTRAL pH FOODS – 
Neutral – most tap water, most olive oils, pumpkin seeds, primrose oil, marine lipids, sesame seeds, raw goat milk, fennel seeds, sunflower seeds, leeks (bulbs), coconut & oil, barley, sprouted breads
7.0
ACID pH FOODS – 
10 x More Acidic – fresh water fish, lentils, spelt, soy flour, Brazil nuts, wheat kernels, coconut, macadamias, grapes, hazelnuts, brown rice, wheat, papaya, stevia & agave, watermelon, cantaloupe, cherries, strawberries, plums, blueberries, raspberries, dates, peaches, oranges, pineapple, banana, mango, walnuts
6.0
100 x More Acidic honey, coked beans, bread, liver, organ meats, cocoa, soy milk, white rice, potatoes, butter & corn oil, soft cheeses, milk & cream, sweet potatoes, whole grain, rye bread, white bread, white biscuit, fruit juice, cashews, oysters, rice cakes, turbinado sugar, ketchup, mayonnaise, figs & prunes, rose hips, cooked corn 5.0
1,000 x More Acidic – turkey, ocean fish, chicken and eggs, hard cheeses, mustard, canned fruits, beer & wine, cream cheese, most pastries, popcorn, peanuts, pistachios, fruit drinks, beet sugar, white sugar, coffee, chocolate cranberries, buttermilk, tomato sauce 4.0
10,000 x More Acidic – pork, veal, beef, lamb, pickles, vinegar, black tea, soy sauce, hard liquors, canned foods, processed foods, microwaved foods, sweetened fruits & juices, tobacco products (chewed or smoked), artificial sweeteners, 16 oz, Chocolatty-Moca-Frappucinos, sodas, carbonated beverages 3.0
NOTE:  Most foods become more acidic when cooked, and it takes 20 parts of alkalinity to neutralize 1 part of acidity in the body. 

Cheeseburger and FriesConsider the common meal of a cheeseburger, fries, and a soda. The beef has a pH of 3, the cheese (probably cheddar) has a pH of 4, mustard has a pH of 4, the pickles have a pH of 3, the fries and ketchup have a pH of 5, and the soda has a pH of roughly 3. You might notice that common diets, on a whole, consist of foods found in the highly acidic range. Dairy, eggs, meat, most grains, and processed foods, like canned and packaged snacks and convenience foods, fall on the acid side.

Raw Salad

Cooking foods adds to their acidity, so it makes the most sense to eat raw as well as cooked foods and to put an emphasis on fresh, green vegetables. Most fruits and vegetables, soybeans and tofu, and some nuts, seeds, and legumes are alkaline-promoting foods.

Do Acid Foods Taste Acidic?

The references to acidity and alkalinity are in regards to the effects they have on the body. Acid foods don’t necessarily taste acidic and vice versa.oranges lemons An orange might be considered acidic by taste, but it actually has an alkalinizing effect on the body. The most acidic food you can intake is sugar straight from sugar cane and, seemingly counter-intuitive, the most alkaline food you can intake is lemon. These are true because of the resulting effects on the body. One way to describe this is with the idea that foods turn to “ash” in our bodies and if the result of the food leaves an acidic ash, then it has an acidizing effect on the body and if it leaves an alkaline ash, then it alkalizes the body.

What is a Healthy pH Diet? 

In order to maintain a cellular pH of 6.5, our diets need to be comprised of 70-80% alkaline foods. This includes:

  1. lemon,
  2. leafy greens
  3. almonds
  4. millet
  5. quinoa
  6. buckwheat
  7. spelt
  8. seeds
  9. good oils
  10. honey, and others

That leaves 20-30% of the diet to acidic foods such as: sugar, meat, aged cheeses, grains, legumes, and other nuts.

Bathroom Scale Weightloss
It should also be noted that caffeine, alcohol and tobacco are all acidic as well. Maintaining a healthy weight will also result from eating the outlined diet above. Most weight loss plans cut out processed foods and sugars and put a heavy emphasis on leafy green vegetables and healthy meats because it’s a fool-proof way to keep optimal health and maintain a good body size.

How Does This Affect Chronic Health Problems?

Some cancer patients are placed on highly alkalinized diets because diseases usually thrive in acidic bodies. Oxygen is deadly to cancer, so cancer thrives at lower pH levels. Remember how we discovered that each numeric change on the pH scale is to the exponential power of ten? It should also be noted that each numeric change also alters oxygen levels by 60%. This means there could be a very serious oxygen deficiency at the highly acidic pH levels.

Tomatoes and Potatoes
Some doctors recommend patients reduce intake of (or stop eating completely) nightshades, such as tomatoes and potatoes, as a remedy for arthritis. One important thing to remember is that diets in response to issues in our bodies don’t have to be permanent! We can give up a certain food or reduce its consumption in our diets to achieve a level of health and then slowly introduce it back in. With foods, we need to work with our bodies and respond to their needs.

What is Acidosis and Alkalosis?

It is possible to have what is commonly referred to as ‘acidosis’ or ‘alkalosis’. These are conditions that result from too much or not enough acid in the body fluids. Because our bodies are so efficient at balancing all of our pH levels, it takes severe dietary imbalance to be in these states. But diet is not the only cause of imbalance.

Depressed Child Rainy Day
Too much stress can be very acidic to our bodies as well as lack of fresh air, improper amounts of sleep, failure to get enough sunshine, and lack of water. Some side effects of being too acidic are coughing, coma, irregular heartbeat, increased heart rate, weakness, nausea, frequent sighing, anxiety, and the inability to hold your breath for a period of time.

The other extreme, alkalosis, can be caused by a lack of oxygen as a result of poor breathing practices, or other conditions that prevent pure air access. Some side effects of being to alkaline are deficiencies in potassium and calcium, twitching, hyperventilation, arthritis, allergies, bone spurs, and calcium deposits. People who are sick might also notice symptoms of alkalosis as vomiting induces a loss of stomach acidity. One of the most important poor practices that can cause alkalosis is the improper usage of antacids. Antacids are not a good way to combat alkalinity because they need an acid medium to be absorbed by our bodies.

Maintaining proper practices for our bodies and being intentional with what we choose to eat can help us work with our bodies toward heightened overall health!


Text References

Cassileth, Carrie R. (2008). Principles and Practice of Gastrointestinal Oncology. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. p. 137

Segel, Irwin H. “Acid and Base.” Biochemical Calculations. 2nd ed. Wiley: BK Book, 1976. 12.

Seifter JL. Acid-base disorders. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds.Goldman’s Cecil Medicine

Needham, A. Comparative and Environmental Physiology. Acidosis and Alkalosis. 2004.

Williams, Sue. Basic Nutrition & Diet Therapy, 11th ed. 2001: Mosby (2001). p. 414.

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Jessica JohnsonThis article was written by Jessica Johnson. Jessica is a Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance Health and Wellness Educator. Jessica has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Management with an Economics and International Studies Minor from the University of Central Misouri (UCM). She is currently working as Assistant Manager and Sales Representative in Pacific Grove, California. She was Vice President of Delta Epsilon Iota Honor Society from 2011-2012 and is a sales representative for Young Living Essential Oils Company. Jessica is passionate about holistic health and healing. The Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance is a registered 501 (c) 3 nonprofit health and wellness education organization. For more information about the Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance contact us or visit our website at http://www.montereybayholistic.com. All images are copyright free, from http://www.pixabay.com unless otherwise noted.

Disclaimer: The Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance is a charitable, independent registered nonprofit 501(c)3 organization and does not endorse any particular products or practices. We exist as an educational organization dedicated to providing free access to health education resources, products and services. Claims and statements herein are for informational purposes only and have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The statements about organizations, practitioners, methods of treatment, and products listed on this website are not meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This information is intended for educational purposes only. The MBHA strongly recommends that you seek out your trusted medical doctor or practitioner for diagnosis and treatment of any existing health condition.

The Essentials of Essential Oils

Lavender Essential OilIf you’ve chosen to live a more holistically healthy life, chances are high that you’ve encountered essential oils in some way. Today, they are available in many stores and mass marketed through many companies. Perhaps you’ve wondered about the sudden popularity of essential oils. Is this a passing craze or has an ancient holistic healing wonder been introduced to modern individuals in a new and effective way?

 

oil dropsHow Are Essential Oils Produced?

Essential oils are produced by extracting liquid from plants’ flowers, leaves, roots, and stems. Dr. Erika Krumbeck, ND, describes essential oils as “the distilled volatile aromatic constituents of the plant that are highly concentrated.”

Distillation is one of the purest forms of extracting essential oils. The process involves creating steam by boiling water in a vessel with the plants. This extracts the oils from the plant and they evaporate and are captured along with the steam vapor. The condensation is rapidly cooled which returns all oils and water to their liquid state. Because the water and the oil do not mix, the oils are separated and bottled for sale.

Another form of production is expression, which is a method most commonly used by people who grow their own plants. Expression involves simply adding pressure to plants to extract the oil. There are a few other practices that can be researched to extract essential oils, some are ancient, and some are rarely used today.

Caution with essential oils is necessary in all aspects of their usage, but knowledge about the production processes of the oils you choose to use is imperative. Not all oils are created equal, so it’s important to research the various brands’ practices. Because of FDA classifications, essential oils are not always regulated as drugs and there are many chemicals that are legally allowed to be added to them. This lack of regulation can also lead to dilution of essential oils with other unknown liquids resulting in impure and weakened oil. Researching the production standards of the different essential oils brands is wise because this is a product you are applying directly to your skin or, in some cases, ingesting.

Essential Oil Bottles

What Are The Uses of Essential Oils?

It is very important to have realistic expectations about the results of using essential oils. While they have a host of uses, they are incredibly powerful! It takes 256 pounds of peppermint leaves to make one pound of peppermint essential oil and a single drop of peppermint essential oil is equivalent to 28 cups of peppermint tea.

5,000 pounds of rose petals are required to distill 1 pound of pure rose oil, making it one of the most precious and expensive oils on the market.  The amount of plant material required for distilling to gather essential oils explains why some oils are more expensive than others.  And yet, since we only use a small amount of essential oils at a time, even oils that are expensive are often considered to be very cost-effective.


Important Notes for Safety

Essential oils can have the same effectiveness as some antibiotics, so it would be wise to treat them as such. Ingesting essential oils is potentially quite dangerous if incorrectly executed, but even application directly on the skin should be treated with the utmost caution. When we put oil on our skin, it goes directly into the bloodstream. This means there is a direct effect on our hormones, internal bacteria, and can even affect a baby through the placenta if used by a pregnant woman.

Happy ChildExtra caution should be practiced when using oils on children. Never put oils directly on their skin without a mild carrier oil and caution should be applied if you let them ingest essential oils. One drop, possibly two, diluted in mild carrier oil applied to the feet is an effective to treat any need your child may have while keeping the oil far from their air passageways. It’s easy to overdose with children because we consider essential oils in ‘drops.’  For example, as noted above, one drop of peppermint essential oil is equivalent to 28 cups of tea. Therefore, if you wouldn’t consider it wise to give your child 28 cups of tea, you might want to consider using carrier oil and only applying a small amount at a time.

There are certainly risks if essential oils are misused, just like any medication. One or two drops are usually sufficient and it’s always safer to use a diluent oil. It would be wise to remember that more is not necessarily better when using essential oils. The benefits of essential oils can far outweigh the risks, and it is valuable to understand their strength and use the oils wisely.

All About Application

A term frequently used alongside essential oils is “carrier oil.”  This refers to a vegetable oil (usually derived from the seeds, nuts or kernels of a plant) that can be used in the dilution of an essential oil.Hemp Seed Oil

Dilution is useful when you would like to incorporate essential oils into a massage, use essential oils over a large portion of the body, or apply an essential oil to a young child or to a sensitive part of the skin. See the ‘Essential Oil Dilution Chart’ as a reference for the suggested essential oil/carrier oil ratios.

Image: Inside Outside the Box http://otbblog2014.weebly.com/articles.html

Image: Inside Outside the Box http://otbblog2014.weebly.com/articles.html

The best rule of thumb is one drop of essential oil per 1 teaspoon of carrier oil.  1% dilution would be used on children under age 6, pregnant women, elderly adults, those with sensitive skin or compromised immune systems or other serious health issues. 2% dilution would be used for most adults and most situations. This is also a good dilution for basic skin care issues and for daily use. 3% – 10% dilution is best for short-term use for a temporary health issue, such as muscle injuries or respiratory congestion. Up to 10% dilution is generally free of issues, depending on the health concern, the age of the person, and the oils being used. 25% dilution is occasionally necessary for a muscle cramp, serious bruising, or severe pains. If you do not dilute oils, they are known as “neat”. This method can cause some individuals to experience irritation or sensitivity. Lavender is frequently used neat for bug bites, burns, or wounds.

Herbal Essence Dropper

Essential Oil Measurement Equivalents

100 drops = 1 tsp = 5ml = 1/6 ounce

200 drops = 2 tsp = 10ml = 1/3 ounce

300 drops = 3 tsp = 15ml = 1/2 ounce

400 drops = 4 tsp = 20ml = 2/3 ounce

500 drops = 5 tsp = 25ml = 5/6 ounce

600 drops = 6 tsp = 30ml = 1 ounce

essential oil massageCarrier oils are also useful if you need to relieve an over-application of an essential oil in a sensitive area of the body (such as accidentally administering to the eyes) as water does not effectively work to remove oil. Rub the carrier oil over the area of discomfort and you will feel relief immediately. Some carrier oils are: sweet almond, avocado, jojoba, fractionated coconut, olive, sesame, and hemp seed oils.

There are 4 ways to apply essential oils: they can be:

  1. Applied directly to the skin and absorbed
  2. Inhaled (as in aromatherapy)
  3. Diffused through the air
  4. Ingested either directly, in water, or in a capsule form.It is recommended to store essential oils in a dark place, safe from sunlight, which can weaken their potency, in a dark amber or blue colored glass bottle. Stored correctly, essential oils can last indefinitely.


cup of hot tea

Personal Experience

About a year ago, my mother and I were watching my 1 year old niece. My mother made some herbal tea for herself and me. In the few seconds between setting the boiling hot cup of tea on the coffee table and returning to her chair, my niece pulled the whole cup down on herself, completely scalding her sensitive skin.

We rushed her into some cold water, but could see the redness and blistering beginning to develop. I quickly grabbed the lavender essential oil and some coconut oil to dilute it in, mixed the oils and applied to my niece’s skin. She stopped crying immediately as the oils drew the warmth from her burn and soothed her skin. We applied the oil mixture periodically throughout the evening. The next morning, she had only a dime sized red spot left of the burn that had previously marked the whole right side of her chest.

Essential oils are powerful medicines that, time and again, prove themselves to heal when needed. I personally prefer the high quality of Young Living Essential Oils with their ‘Seed to Seal’ promise which ensures safe treatment of every plant from its planting to its bottling for sale.

References

Buckle, J. (2003). Clinical aromatherapy: Essential oils in practice. New York: Churchill Livingstone.

Hammer, K. A., Carson, C. F., Riley, T. V., & Nielsen, J. B. (2006). A review of the toxicity of Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil. Food & Chemical Toxicology, 44(5), 616-625.

Kejova K, Jorova D, Bendova H, Gajdos P & Kolarova H. (2010). Phototoxicity of essential oils intended for cosmetic use. Toxicology in Vitro, 24 (8), 2084-9.

Price, S. & Price, L. (2007). Aromatherapy for health professionals, 3rd Ed. Philadelphia: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier.

Tisserand, R. & Balacs, T. (1998). Essential oil safety: A guide for health professionals. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.

Vigan M. (2010). Essential oils: Renewal of interest and toxicity. [Review]. European J of Dermatology, 20 (6), 685-92.

Williams, A. & Barry, B. (1989). Essential oils as novel human skin penetration enhancers. International Journal of Pharmaceutics, 57, R7-R9.

 

 

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Jessica JohnsonThis article was written by Jessica Johnson. Jessica is a Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance Health and Wellness Educator. Jessica has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Management with an Economics and International Studies Minor from the University of Central Misouri (UCM). She is currently working as Assistant Manager and Sales Representative in Pacific Grove, California. She was Vice President of Delta Epsilon Iota Honor Society from 2011-2012 and is a sales representative for Young Living Essential Oils Company. Jessica is passionate about holistic health and healing. The Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance is a registered 501 (c) 3 nonprofit health and wellness education organization. For more information about the Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance contact us or visit our website at www.montereybayholistic.com.

Disclaimer: The Monterey Bay Holistic Alliance is a charitable, independent registered nonprofit 501(c)3 organization and does not endorse any particular products or practices. We exist as an educational organization dedicated to providing free access to health education resources, products and services. Claims and statements herein are for informational purposes only and have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The statements about organizations, practitioners, methods of treatment, and products listed on this website are not meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This information is intended for educational purposes only. The MBHA strongly recommends that you seek out your trusted medical doctor or practitioner for diagnosis and treatment of any existing health condition.