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2002 12: Aromatherapy Newsletter December 2002

President’s Letter

Happy Christmas to everyone and a healthy, prosperous New Year! Who knows what 2003 will bring, but I am thinking positively. We have gained two new staff members since I last talked to you. Kymme was hired while I was in England, and then Paula joined our group a little later on. If we carry on like this we will have to move!

We had a booth at the Victoria Hair and Esthetics show on November the 10th. I was asked to speak about aromatherapy for a few hours. It seems there is a definite level of interest from this group regarding how the oils can be used effectively in a salon/spa setting. We had a great time; they were a fun and friendly bunch!

There are a couple of recipes below that were suggested to the stylists; perhaps you”d like to try them out! If you have any recipes you would like to pass on, we will publish them in our newsletter. We always love to hear what our clients are concocting!

On a closing note, I would like to thank you all for your continued support and positive feedback over the year. Please remember our offices will be closed from Dec 25th to January 2nd to allow our staff to spend the holidays with their families. I will look forward to talking with you all again in January!

Barb Greenwood
President & CEO

Do not Worry, Be Healthy!

With the cold and flu season rapidly approaching we thought it wise to dedicate a newsletter to the premise of taking positive action to help ensure you get through this season of illnesses unscathed! It seems around the holiday season so many of us get caught up in the stress of things, taking on more than we can cope with, trying to be too many places at once and perhaps imbibing in a few too many cocktails and sweet treats than we should as well! Our immune system stands on guard, waiting to defend our bodies from the invasion of pathogens (viruses, parasites, funguses and bacteria). When this amazing system is overloaded, it crashes and this causes illness. This newsletter will cover ways to use essential oils and other ways to help keep our immune systems strong and viable, to keep you healthy over the winter season and year round!

Our Immune Systems: a brief overview

Our immune systems can be thought of as a band of highly specialized warriors, constantly on guard within our bodies, waiting for the first sign of an alien invasion (a nasty virus or bacteria) that will launch the attack to destroy these potentially devastating pathogens. For a system we so desperately need, many of us know little about it. The main elements of this system consist of the thymus gland, bone marrow, the spleen, the complete system of enzymatic proteins and the lymph system with its production of white blood cells and lymphocytes.

Most North Americans do not have a strong immune system, due to too much pollution, too many drugs, and a poor diet (not to mention our fast paced, over-stressed lifestyles). When the body is under negative stress it affects the body”s production of interferon (a natural anti-viral agent in the body), leaving the body more susceptible to infection. Antibiotics are rampantly prescribed for fighting infections and if used over a long period of time these drugs may actually depress the immune system. So what can we do to help?

Our immune systems must be built and maintained from the inside out. This means what you put in to your body will either add to or detract from this ability. Nutritional deficiencies are one of the main contributors to the overall functioning of this system. Keeping up on your intake of highly nutritious foods and supplements will go a long way towards helping to keep you strong. Essential oils can also play a roll in this quest for health.

Natural Immune Boosters

Most essential oils carry with them natural antiseptic abilities, but there seem to be some that have the ability to help boost the body’s immune system.Geranium essential oilLavender essential oilRosemary essential oil and Tea Tree essential oil are some of the “safer” oils (ones that do not tend to cause skin irritation in most individuals when used in the bath or in a massage oil). Other powerful oils that have the reputation of “keeping the bugs at bay” are Clove essential oilThyme essential oilOriganum (oregano) essential oil and Cinnamon essential oil. These oils are great to diffuse, as they may help to clear the air of the nasty bacteria and help to boost the immune system simply through the process of inhalation. They should be used very cautiously in a massage oil or bath as they have a reputation for being skin irritants. Molecules enter the body via the olfactory system and from there are transported throughout the body, stopping off to work their magic where they are needed before being excreted from the body via sweat, urine, breath or feces.

Green Valley has created our own version of an immune boosting blend, and it was named “ Terminator blend” due to its ability to “kill off” germs, bacteria and viruses in the air and also for the way it helps to boost the body’s natural ability to fight off infections. This blend can be used in a massage oil, diffused, blended into a bath, made into a room spray and simply inhaled from a tissue. Its concept came about in our search to create a blend for a client who was immune compromised and wanted something to help her stay well. We made up this blend, she used it and a year later contacted us to tell us that she managed to stay well throughout the “infectious” season. We were so thrilled by this that it seemed only natural to share it with the rest of our clientele! The overall results have been very positive. This month would be a great time to add Terminator to your list of oils to try, as it is on special this month.

Some Dietary Immune Boosting Tips

Some of the major culprits responsible for suppressing the immune system are saturated fats, fried foods and red meat. What can we eat to help our body do what it does best?

  1. Reduce dairy and sugary foods.
  2. Start each day off with a protein drink.
  3. Include a cup of green tea, fresh fruits and vegetables to take advantage of the natural enzymes in them (they are necessary to the immune response). Some especially powerful enzyme rich foods are papaya, garlic and sprouts.
  4. Have a “green drink”. There are many powder supplements that have a base consisting of wheat grass, spirulina, kelp, enzymes and other nutrient dense ingredients.
  5. Take an acidophilus supplement to help keep your body’s natural flora at an optimum level, thus ensuring the bad bacteria don”t get a foot hold in your body.
  6. Antioxidants will help ensure your body stays strong (vitamin C, Vitamin E, Zinc, grape seed extract, CoQ10).

Other Options

As we mentioned, stress is a huge factor in the battle for good health. Work on maintaining a positive mental attitude and engage in relaxation techniques (meditation, yoga, positive visualization, etc). Burn any of the above mentioned essential oils in your diffuser while engaging in these activities to help encourage the body”s response further!

  • Try to get enough sleep. When we sleep the body goes to work detoxifying and healing from the “wars” of the day. It is at this time that the immune system does its best work, so if you are burning the candle at both ends and not letting your body rest as it needs to, your chances of falling ill are much greater.
  • Stop smoking. If you needed another reason to stop, here it is. Any form of nicotine will depress the immune system; it also causes zinc deficiency (which is an antioxidant necessary for the immune system!). Smoking also decreases the amount of oxygen available to the cell tissues, which increases the chance for disease to flourish.
  • Exercise regularly. How many times have we heard this? By engaging in regular aerobic activity we keep our circulation flowing (which helps to move toxins out of our system) and keep up the levels of healthy oxygen in our systems. This helps to keep disease from finding a niche in which to flourish.

With the lymph system being a major part of the body’s immune response system, it is always a good idea to work on detoxification. Many spas offer lymphatic drainage massage, which is an excellent way to move the toxins from the lymph. One method you can try at home is the bath recipe listed below. It is important to note that large amounts of water should be consumed when engaging in any cleansing activity, because once these organs release the toxins, water is necessary to flush them out of your system.

Lymph Cleanse Bath

Mix above ingredients in a glass (not metal) bowl to evenly disburse the essential oils throughout. Add to the running bath water. Relax for 20 minutes ensuring that you drink plenty of water during that time.

Rosewood (Bois de Rose)

After our current supply has been sold, we will stop selling Rosewood until the species is no longer endangered. More information will follow in the next newsletter.

Did You Know?

Laughter boosts more than your spirits! It can also help to boost your body’s immune response by lowering the levels of cortisol, which is an immune suppressor (thus allowing the immune system to function better!). So rent a movie that tickles your funny bone and laugh your way to good health!

*This is educational information and any opinions expressed here-in do not replace professional medical advice. If you are ill, see a suitably qualified medical practitioner.*

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