Add Some Citrus to Your Aromatherapy With Bergamot Oil!

Bergamot Oil
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When starting your own collection of essential oils for home remedies and natural healing, you will likely begin with some of the more popular ones like lavender, peppermint, and sage. All of these have medicinal uses as well as aromatherapy and culinary uses, but one essential oil that has quite a few applications, though not thought of as often, is bergamot. Bergamot essential oil isn’t unheard of, although it isn’t as prevalent as some other essential oils. So what is bergamot oil?

Herbalists extract bergamot oil from the rinds of the bergamot orange fruit, which grows on a variety of orange trees native to Asia. After Europeans had tried bergamot-infused tea from China, which was later known as Earl Grey tea, the tree started making its way from Southeast Asia to Europe during the height of the tea trade. In fact, bergamot essential oil is what gives Earl Grey tea its characteristic flavor, so anyone who occasionally takes a cup has previously experienced bergamot. Traders brought the species of orange tree to Italy, and named it Bergamo after the location where it originally landed.

Bergamot Oil
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Uses for Bergamot

As European tea drinkers began using it to flavor their drinks, preferring the sweet and spicy taste of the essential oil and its citrusy aroma, it was suddenly realized that the essential oil had a variety of other uses as well. Although not as easy to obtain as some other essential oils, bergamot has a variety of distinctive uses that make it worth keeping in your essential oil collection. Bergamot essential oil benefits are many. So what is bergamot oil good for? What does bergamot essential oil do? Let’s have a look at some of the benefits bergamot oil.

Topical

The anti-inflammatory and antibacterial characteristics of bergamot oil make it an excellent choice for spot treating bacterial skin infections and acne. However, the citric acid in bergamot essential oil can irritate or burn skin if used excessively, so people with sensitive skin should avoid using it. Cysts benefit from its analgesic properties. In order to utilize it as a spot therapy for skin irritation, mix it with a carrier oil such as almond or coconut oil and applied to the affected region for a few hours at a time instead. When under direct sunlight for a long period of time, do not use bergamot essential oil, and do not leave it on all night long.

Aromatherapy

Bergamot oil has many uses in aromatherapy, valued for its soothing attributes. When mixed with a carrier oil or used in some types of lotions or hair care products, it can induce a relaxed state that dispels anxiety. Because of its citrus aroma, it is popular in things like air fresheners and candles, as well as sea salt facial scrubs. You can also put it with a bit of water into a diffuser or sprinkle it on potpourri as an air freshener.

Culinary

This oil was initially used as a flavoring in drinks and foods. Derived from the citrus tree bergamot orange, it delivers a strong dose of vitamin C to any food or beverage. Its most common use is in flavoring the Earl Gray tea variety, and it is also used in other forms of tea. In food dosages, it is safe for human consumption and can add a citrus spice to an otherwise bland dish.

Hair Treatment

In some hair types, bergamot oil acts as a softener and a taming agent for unruly curls. When used in hair care products, bergamot oil may provide some relief to itchy scalps. However, because it contains citrus acid, exercise caution when applying it directly to the skin. Use a carrier oil or your usual shampoo if there aren’t too many additives in the products. It also works well when used with other essential oils, such as tea tree oil for skin inflammation, lavender oil for relaxation, or chamomile oil to improve mood.

Counteract Food Poisoning

This oil might alleviate some of the symptoms of food poisoning in mild cases, though when food poisoning is severe, a medical practitioner must address it, so don’t ignore it. Researchers discovered that linalool, a type of aromatic acid found in bergamot, inhibits the growth of several strains of staph bacteria. In a 2006 study, they also discovered that bergamot essential oil has a significant impact on the growth of germs that cause foodborne illness. In a subsequent investigation, researchers found bergamot oil to be effective against listeria in fish and poultry. There was no conclusive evidence that bergamot oil was an effective treatment for food poisoning, but these investigations indicated that further research was necessary.

Treat Tension and Stress

The compound linalool, found in bergamot essential oil, in addition to being a good anti-bacterial, can alleviate certain symptoms of stress. In a study from 2015 involving women in Japan, researchers discovered that when exposed to bergamot oil mixed with water and aromatherapy vapors, it alleviated feelings of stress and anxiety in the test subjects. Other studies like this one into the use of aromatherapy for anxiety and depression showed that bergamot essential oil mixed with other essential oils like lavender and chamomile, encourages the brain to release dopamine and serotonin, both known to be mood enhancers.

Relieves aches and pains

Bergamot contains the anti-inflammatory compounds linalool and carvacrol. According to a 2017 study that examined the effects of several essential oils on humans and animals, researchers discovered that bergamot oil promoted analgesic properties in humans. When applying the essential oil directly to the skin, rather than eaten, they observed a lower incidence of inflammation.

Cholesterol

In a 2016 investigation of humans and animals, the flavonoids in bergamot oil were found to have an inhibitory effect on specific lipids in the bloodstream. Bergamot essential oil reduced test subjects’ cholesterol levels as a result of this treatment. In another study, rats with fatty liver disease benefitted from bergamot oil, and the rats’ cholesterol levels dropped. However, the processes behind this were not fully understood in either study.

How to Use

It is possible to utilize this oil in the same way as other essential oils, but use caution because it is derived from a citrus fruit and contains citric acid. Those with sensitive skin should use bergamot with caution to avoid skin irritation.

Bergamot Oil
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Orally

The most common and immediate use of this oil is through ingestion. Add the essential oil to a carrier oil that for use in foods, although cooking the oil seems to diminish some of the effects, so it should add it after the food is cooked. It is also added to beverages and drinks, and is a hallmark of Earl Grey tea. A drop or two of bergamot essential oil can be added to water for ingestion as well. Ironically, though, even though ingestion is the most common means of using bergamot oil, it is not the most effective means of its use.

Topical

This method, which is perhaps the most effective means of the use of bergamot essential oil, is also the one in which users should exercise the most caution. Bergamot oil should never be applied directly to the skin undiluted, but instead add it to a carrier oil of some kind, such as almond oil or coconut oil. It can be added to your usual shampoo, or to a shampoo without any additives or scents, for use in your hair and on the scalp. Citric acid in the oil can burn the eyes, so do not use it in this region. To avoid burns or irritation, it should never be left on the skin overnight. Apply topically only to regions of the body exposed to sunlight for less than an hour in the next 24 hours. Bergamot essential oil is absorbed into the bloodstream through the skin and can treat inflammation caused by acne or other bacterial skin problems if applied correctly.

Diffusers

This citrus oil can be utilized in a wide variety of cosmetic and fragrance formulations as well as aromatherapy. In a diffuser, however, it should not be used on its own, but rather mixed it with a few tablespoons of water before usage. It can bring a zesty spring sensation to the room, which can help improve your mood and help you relax.

Adverse Effects

This oil is not without its downsides, and the side effects of the essential oil, while not often dangerous, should still be noted before adding it to any health regimen. Its main side effect is skin irritation, especially in people with sensitive skin, so it should never be used directly on the skin. Anyone with an allergy to citrus should not use bergamot essential oil, and even people without allergies can develop allergic dermatitis with overuse. Symptoms of this include redness, swelling, itching, blisters, and pain or burning sensations. Before using bergamot oil for the first time, test it on a patch of skin and observe the effects for the next 24 hours. Stop using it immediately if you develop any of these symptoms, and in severe cases, contact your doctor or a dermatologist.

When used topically, the treated skin should not be exposed to sunlight for at least a day afterwards. Bergamot essential oil can cause photosensitivity and could make that area more prone to sunburn. Also be aware that using any essential oil in a diffuser, while safe for humans, might have a negative effect on your pets. Children also tend to be more sensitive to essential oils, so use it sparingly in a diffuser if there are children present.

If ingested in high quantities, bergapten in bergamot essential oil might be dangerous. Some drugs are affected even when the essential oil is inhaled or applied topically. As a result of certain drugs, such as ciprofloxacin (an antibiotic), people are more sensitive to sunlight, increasing the effectiveness of the antiseptic oil. Before you use this product, be aware of any possible side effects or interactions with other medicines.

The Final Word

For its uses against inflammation and anxiety, bergamot is a great tool to have in your essential oil arsenal. While its antibacterial properties are still not well established, it can have a positive effect on sterilizing certain surfaces, and its beautiful citrus scent is well-loved in perfumes and scented candles. If you want to uplift the mood of your home and add a bit of spring citrus aroma to your surroundings, bergamot oil is a wonderful essential oil to use. Bergamot essential oil uses in aromatherapy are valuable, and the uses of bergamot oil equally varied.

FAQ

1. Does this oil make you sleepy?

It does promote relaxation, but it has not been known to cause drowsiness due to sedative properties.

2. How do you use this oil?

The best way to use it is in a diffuser for aromatherapy, or mixed with a carrier oil and used topically.

3. Which carrier oil should we use with this oil?

The best carrier oil for bergamot is either almond oil, jojoba oil or coconut oil.

4. What is bergamot oil good for?

Bergamot is best used for flavoring beverages, promoting relaxation, and as an anti-inflammatory.