Essential 7

Essential 7
The Name I Trust for Quality Essential Oils

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Salt of the Earth: The Cleaning Power of Salt

Salt is a common staple found in most every household pantry. We use it in cooking, we fill the salt shaker that sits on the table, and we add it to our baking recipes to reduce the rising action of yeast and baking powder. But have you ever considered using salt for cleaning?

Salt has natural abrasive qualities. The next time you are scrubbing a pan in the sink, sprinkle some salt across the bottom of the pan. Now add a squirt of your favorite detergent, and just enough water to form a paste. Gently scrub the pan, allowing the abrasive action of salt to loosen any stuck-on food. It will also work with the detergent to cut grease. Rinse thoroughly with hot water and admire the gleaming result. 

If you want to go completely natural, substitute some lemon juice for detergent. Better yet, cut a lemon in half, sprinkle salt all over the cut side, and use like a scrub pad. The citric acid and the salt make a great grease-cutting combination.

Salt is also great at absorbing spills and stains. Spilled red wine is one of the worst carpet disasters, but salt can save the day if you act quickly. Blot as much of the liquid as you can with a towel, being careful not to rub. This will only drive the stain deeper into the fibers of the carpet. Now pour salt all over the spill, completely covering the area. Leave until dry. Then vacuum the area thoroughly. Behold - a natural dry cleaner! The salt absorbs the stain and the vacuum whisks it away.

Salt in the laundry will help to set colors in new clothes. This is especially good for new denim that you don't want to fade. Toss the new jeans into the washer and add a cup or two of salt (one cup for small loads; two cups for larger loads). Fill with cold water and let soak overnight. Wash in cold water the next morning, and dry on the line or in the dryer. This method is also helpful for setting bright colors that might otherwise bleed during their first washing. (i.e. that red shirt that turned your whites pink!).

Copper or brass is easily cleaned with a mixture of salt and vinegar. Add a little flour to make a paste, and spread over the surface of the metal. After the paste dries, wipe with a clean cloth and buff to a shine.

You can even use salt to get rid of white rings on wood tabletops. Mix salt and vegetable oil to form a paste, and apply liberally to the ring. Allow the mixture to dry. Then buff gently with a soft cloth. 

Salt is so versatile, but yet so natural. Other than the sting you get when salt finds that tiny paper cut on your finger, you can safely clean your home without wearing gloves. Salt is harmless - yes, even beneficial to your skin. (Think of all of the saltwater baths used to heal sores and other wounds.)

Sadly, the same cannot be said about the many household cleaners sold in stores. These harsh chemicals are dangerous when inhaled, and can even cross over into the bloodstream when they come in contact with your skin. (Read more about this process in my Kindle book 


So when you are looking for a household cleaner that is definitely worth its salt, look no further than...well, you get the idea!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Aromatherapy Appetite Suppressant: This Easy Weight Loss Method is Right Under Your Nose!

In this day and age, everyone is looking for a quick solution to weight loss. There are so many diet pills and weight control programs on the market, it's hard to know what is safe to use and what really works. Fads come and go, and last year's hot products are constantly being renamed and repackaged to give them new appeal. It's a fast-paced, multi-billion dollar industry.  Who has time to keep up with all of this? Most of us simply take the latest pills or subscribe to the new diet, based on claims and testimonies of "real people". When our results are not what we expected, we move on to the next "new and improved" product. 

But have you ever stopped to consider that the most effective weight loss solution might be right under your nose? There was a study done way back in 1955 by a neurosurgeon by the name of Alan Hirsch. Dr. Hirsch gave his test subjects inhalers containing peppermint oil, and instructed them to inhale the peppermint scent frequently throughout each day. Those that followed the doctor's instructions lost an average of 5 pounds per week. In fact, some participants were finally asked to leave the study, as their weight loss was too dramatic.

How does something so simply yield such a tremendous result? Dr. Hirsch explained it this way. Inhaling odors has a direct effect on the brain's limbic system. (This is why certain scents trigger memories). Peppermint causes the brain to send a signal to the body that the stomach is full. It is called the satiety signal, which we don't normally feel until we have devoured a fast food value meal the size of Texas. That's because it takes approximately 30 minutes for the digestive process to send out this same signal to the brain.

Based on Dr. Hirsch's research, we can develop a very simple and safe approach to weight loss using essential oil of peppermint. Inhalers can be purchased that are worn around the neck, like a necklace. Place a few drops of peppermint oil inside at the start of each day, and breath deeply as you place the inhaler inside each nostril several times per day.

Another method requires nothing more than a cotton swab. Drop a few drops of peppermint oil onto one end of the swab, and carefully swab the outer edge of each nostril. You will naturally inhale peppermint throughout the day. 

A more intense experience can be had by placing a few drops of peppermint oil into the palm of one hand. Then rub your hands together, cup them over your nose, and breathe deeply. Your eyes may water on this one!

An added benefit of inhaling peppermint oil is its stimulating effect on the brain. It's better than coffee when you need to stay awake, and it can improve mental clarity and even memory in some people. 

So what have you got to lose? (Besides plenty of pounds). Instead of buying the latest-greatest weight loss product, take a deep breath - of peppermint oil, that is. Your stomach will feel fuller, and chances are, so will your wallet! 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Vitamin D: The Key to a Healthy Colon

Vitamin D is often called the Sunshine Vitamin, because our bodies naturally absorb this important nutrient from the sun. But did you know that vitamin D provides a tremendous benefit to a part of your body where the sun doesn't shine? 

The health of your colon is greatly affected by the level of vitamin D in your system. If you are deficient in vitamin D, your colon is likely a minefield of dangerous polyps, which can turn cancerous if left unchecked. Conversely, a body that is high on the vitamin D meter normally sports a healthy, smooth colon wall.

I realize that the condition of your colon wall is probably the last thing on your mind, but as you approach the age of 50, your doctor is going to bring it to your attention. You see, fifty is the "age of the colonoscopy" in the medical realm. So get ready to bend over and take it...or not. You really do have a choice, contrary to popular belief.

 I am not opposed to diagnostic testing when there is "probable cause". If you see blood in your stool, get a colonoscopy! If colon cancer runs rampant in your family, get tested regularly. But I personally do not sign up for routine invasive procedures, based solely on my age. Instead, I prefer to take the preventative health approach .

This approach is what led me to research the vitamin D-colon health connection. I am always fascinated by the human body's ability to heal and maintain itself, when given the proper nutrients. Vitamin D has long been touted as an immune booster, but recent studies revealed a geographic link to the rising rate of colon cancer.

People who lived furthest from the Equator experienced a higher incidence of colon cancer than their sun-basking peers. This information sparked the theory that vitamin D is directly related to colon health. 

Since then, doctors have begun an awareness campaign regarding the importance of vitamin D supplementation in preventing colon cancer. Prescriptions for Vitamin D3 are on the rise, with the hope of bringing the rate of colon cancer lower. Unfortunately, doctor-recommended daily doses are also on the low side. 

A healthy adult living in a sunny climate, but having limited sun exposure, should supplement his diet with 2,000 daily IUs (International Units) of vitamin D3. Northern residents with the same lifestyle and health status should aim for a daily dose closer to 5,000 IUs of vitamin D3.  If you are at a high risk for colon cancer, you may want to double those numbers. Elderly folks should also aim high on the daily dosage scale, as general immune support requires more effort as we age.

Now, keep in mind that I am no doctor. I just tend to gravitate to nutritional research like a proverbial moth to flame. My hope is that my informed opinion will inspire you to research this subject further so you can make your own decisions about preventative health measures.

I can, however, provide you a personal testimony on vitamin D and its effect on the human colon. I have a family member who is at a very high risk for colon cancer. She has been required for years by her doctor to get a colonoscopy every six months. Each time she has had this procedure done, the technician has found many suspicious-looking polyps that had to be removed. I advised her to begin a daily regimen of 5,000 IUs of vitamin D3. Several months later, she called me in tears - tears of joy, that is. Her latest colonoscopy revealed NO polyps, and her doctor scheduled her next test for one year later, rather than the usual six months. This was an amazing result, after only a few months of taking the vitamin D3
So the moral of the story is...don't let the sun go down before you do your vitamin D research today. Gather the facts so you can make an informed decision about your own colon health. But in the end, always go with your gut feeling!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Christian Alternative to Health Insurance: A More Excellent Way Than Obamacare!

Our illustrious government is always looking for ways to "help" its citizens. At least, that is the guise under which they work.
I, for one, could do with less government intervention (I mean...assistance). For years, a national healthcare program has been discussed. It would solve all of the country's ills and right the wrongs of insurance companies. Finally it arrived, wrapped in a shiny package called the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare.
From what I have seen, there is nothing affordable about it, unless you qualify for government subsidy. The plans are empty vessels with inflated price tags. And yet, the program is so great that we citizens are forced to participate and penalized when we do not comply. That's quite a sales pitch! 

Thankfully, the Author and Sustainer of health is offering a much better product. Christians across the nation have pooled their resources to create a healthcare co-op system. Rather than forcing citizens to care for the needs of others, it offers the opportunity for God's people to care for one another. Everyone contributes monthly to the group's account. When one member's medical needs arise, the cost is shared by the entire group and paid from the co-op's account to the healthcare provider.
Members feel good about their monthly contributions, because they know that they are helping other Christians. And because the co-op ministry does not fund anti-Christian procedures like abortion, there is no moral dilemma associated with membership. Each member can choose the level of contribution and sharing that they can afford.
Those who contribute more receive a greater benefit, in accordance with the "reap what you sow" mentality. But members with excess funds also have the option to contribute extra to help out their less fortunate brothers and sisters in Christ. It's called voluntary charity, and it works, contrary to what Uncle Sam would have you believe.

There are several of these co-ops on the market today. The most popular ones are Medi-Share, Liberty Health Share, Samaritan Ministries, and Christian Healthcare Ministries. All of these programs qualify as exemptions under the Affordable Care Act, which means you will not be penalized for non-compliance.

Obviously, the Christian programs listed above are taken from the Biblical model of caring for one another's needs. But I feel that this concept can be spread to any like-minded group with non-profit status. It all boils down to American ingenuity and free-market prevalence. Let us assemble ourselves together and resist government control and oppression. The health of our nation depends on it!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

How to Stop Bleeding: A Quick Way to Treat a Wound and Avoid Blood Loss

Bleeding is the body's way of cleansing wounds. The flow of blood carries away dirt and debris that might cause infection, so a little bit of bleeding is actually a good thing. But a wound that bleeds excessively is dangerous. I'm sure you have heard the saying, "Life is in the blood." Therefore, if you lose too much blood, you may lose your life!
For years I have known to apply pressure to a bleeding wound, and to keep it elevated above the level of your heart, if possible. These are first aid techniques that really work. But sometimes they don't work very quickly. I have tried to stop the bleeding when my Dad, a heart patient who takes blood thinners, accidentally cuts himself. It's like trying to turn off a faucet without a handle. Bandages, pressure, and elevation do very little. Meanwhile, the red river flows - over the banks of the wound and onto the counter, the sink, the floor. All this from a small tear of the skin or a sliver of a cut. It's alarming.
In recent years I have learned a secret that everyone should know. There is an essential oil that has hemastatic properties. In other words, it arrests bleeding better than anything I have ever seen. It is better than styptic powder or cornstarch (these are also good to have on hand for small cuts). It works immediately, and it even smells good. And as the drum rolls, I would like to introduce to you the amazing... essential oil of geranium!
Okay, I am not hearing the applause, but it really does deserve at least a golf clap. One or two drops of geranium oil applied to an open wound will cause the bleeding to come to a screeching halt. Very deep, large wounds may need a few applications, combined with intervals of strong pressure. But this miracle oil can literally save your life!
Just this week I had an occasion to put geranium oil to the test. My ten-year-old son cut his toe wide open when he fell through a glass coffee table. (Don't ask! He's a boy and he is ten.) The cut was deep and jagged, and the blood flowing from it was very dark. Before I tried to inspect it for glass shards or apply any sort of bandage, I reached for the essential oil of geranium. I dropped several drops into the wound, and then applied some gauze and some pressure. Next, I wrapped his foot with medical tape to keep the gauze in place. Then we were off to the emergency room. About 45 minutes passed before a nurse unwrapped that dressing, but when she did, there was very little blood on the gauze and the wound was not bleeding at all. They were able to inspect the damage and sew him up very quickly.

I truly believe that no household should be without geranium oil. It should reside in the first aid kit or on the kitchen counter, where it can be grabbed in an instant. Who hasn't sliced a fingertip while cutting vegetables, and then tried unsuccessfully to keep a bandage in place to avoid bleeding all over the dinner? A drop of geranium oil can change that scene into a non-issue. It's amazing!

When shopping for essential oil of geranium, keep one thing in mind. You need therapeutic-grade oil; not aromatherapy-grade oil. Therapeutic-grade oils are highly concentrated, and they act as medicine to the body. They are made from the leaves of plants - steam distilled and natural, a gift from above. Find them in health food stores or specialty sites online. I buy all of my oils from They have been sending me quality essential oils for many years. Geranium oil is inexpensive and available in several different sizes. Remember to buy enough to keep some at home and some at work. You never know when you might be someone's lifeline!

For more information on the healing powers of essential oils, read my books:

It's Thyme To Stop Snoring: Safely and Naturally


Saturday, February 14, 2015

Do You Grind Your Teeth? The Reason Why May Surprise You

Has your dentist informed you that you grind your teeth? Does your jaw ache when you wake up each morning? Many people suffer from this problem (officially know as bruxism), and they don't know why. 
Dental devices don't solve the issue. They only deal with the symptom. A mouth guard will prevent you from grinding your teeth at night, but the underlying problem will still exist. 
So what's causing this? The answer is surprisingly simple: magnesium deficiency. 

Don't feel bad. A large percentage of the population is deficient in magnesium. We get this mineral from green, leafy vegetables, and most of us don't eat enough of those to offset our bodies' daily needs. We soon become deficient and the deficit continues to grow until symptoms develop. By the time teeth grinding occurs, the magnesium deficiency has reached the severe range. 

Correcting the problem is easy. Increase your intake of magnesium-rich foods, or take a daily supplement of magnesium. I opt for the latter to ensure that I am getting the proper amount each day. 
Pay attention, though, to the type of magnesium supplement you buy. They are not all created equal. Magnesium citrate and magnesium malate are best absorbed by the body. Magnesium oxide is LEAST absorbed by the body. 
As you shop the dietary supplement aisle, you will discover that magnesium oxide is most prevalent and least expensive. Unfortunately, taking magnesium oxide is a waste of time and money. Most of the supplement will be expelled by the body. In other words, you might as well throw it in the toilet and skip the middle man!

Spend the extra money and get the good stuff. Magnesium malate and magnesium citrate absorb readily, and produce speedy results. That means a quick end to teeth grinding!
How much magnesium do you need each day? That depends on how low your levels have sunk. The best approach is to aim high in the beginning. An empty bucket won't refill very quickly if you use an eye dropper.
Start with 1,200 mg of magnesium citrate or magnesium malate each day. If your tooth grinding doesn't come to a grinding halt within a week, increase your daily dosage to 1,500 mg. 
Once the tooth grinding subsides, settle into a daily regimen of 1,000 mg per day. Meanwhile, be prepared for better mental clarity and improved focus.
Magnesium is crucial to proper brain function. You may also experience less stress and a more relaxed overall feeling. This is due to magnesium's smoothing effect on muscle tissue. Leg cramps, muscle spasms, and facial tics will all diminish as your magnesium levels rise. 
So what are you waiting for? You now have the power to deal with the daily grind. Simply magnify your magnesium!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Safe and Natural Cold Sore Remedies

Many people associate cold sores with winter, but cold sores can pop up during any season. Usually stress is the trigger that brings that ugly virus to the surface.

Virus? Yes, I did say virus. Cold sores are symptoms of the herpes simplex virus. The virus lies dormant in the body, usually in the spinal fluid, waiting for the immune system to drop low enough to allow it to resurface. Herpes, in particular, travels along the nervous system, which is why you may feel a tingling sensation before a sore erupts. 
If you do get a warning like this, don't wait. The earlier you act, the less volcanic your cold sore will be.

Remember, that the sore is only the symptom. It is the virus you need to address.
Lemon balm, also called Melissa, is an excellent herb for treating the herpes virus. Lemon balm calms the nervous system, which reduces the stress that triggers the virus. Lemon balm also arrests the virus, and keeps it from replicating inside the cells. Because lemon balm is a mint relative, it is a wonderful leaf for making tea.

 I love to grow lemon balm in pots on my deck. The plant gives off a pleasant, lemony scent, and it is always in close proximity to the kitchen. Simply snip off a few fresh leaves and pour boiling water over them in a tea cup. The aroma alone is enough to calm the nerves, but the herb is a proven medicine for stress. 

Drink several cups per day of lemon balm tea when you feel a cold sore welling up from within. Then begin a topical treatment with essential oil of lemon balm to give that herpes sore the old one-two punch. One or two drops is all you need, applied neat, which means full-strength. 

Another essential oil, tea tree, can be layered over the lemon balm for an even faster result. Tea tree oil comes from the Melaleuca plant in Australia. It is a known antiviral agent, and it also speeds the healing of wounds and sores. Be warned. Tea tree oil smells very strong, and it will usually numb an open sore. Place one drop on your cold sore, layered over top of the lemon balm oil

Continue this two-fold regimen until your cold sore retreats with its little herpes hands held high in the air. I wish I could promise that it will never return, but at least you can send it back into hiding. There are ways to prevent cold sores from popping up in the future.
The main goal is to strengthen your immune system. A strong defense will keep future outbreaks at bay. Here are a few simple immune boosters:

  • Establish a healthy sleep schedule
Our bodies repair and replenish while we sleep. If you are not sleeping enough, your immune system will be weak. Try your best to get seven or eight hours of sleep every night.

  • Eat a well-balanced diet

This seems like a no-brainer, but the truth is that very few of us eat a healthy diet. Prepared foods and packaged snacks tend to rule the pantry. Toss that junk in the trash and opt for fresh, healthy alternatives. Grow more of your own vegetables and herbs, and try to steer clear of store-bought items with long ingredient lists. Most of these chemicals are harmful to the immune system.

  • Avoid stress

Sure. I know what you are thinking. I may as well have told you to "just get a million dollars"! Stress is hard to avoid when you live in a fast-paced world. The trick is to create an escape from stress - a place to hide from this crazy world. I like to call that place "home". If your home is a chaotic environment, you have no daily escape from the pressures at work. Keep things calm and simple at home (as best you can, if you have small children). Don't invite over lots of company on a regular basis, and establish regular bedtime routines for your children (and yourself). 

If your home is not enough of a haven, take a scenic walk each day or work out at the local gym. Find a way to diminish the stress in your life. The health of your immune system depends on it.

A cold sore myth buster: Tea bags do not speed the healing of a cold sore. Many home remedy sites list this option for cold sore relief. 
If the tea bag is cold from the refrigerator, it will act as a soothing compress for any sore. But tea bags are best used on canker sores inside the mouth; not cold sores. 
Canker sores are not virus related. They occur when stomach acids find a way into the mouth (through acid reflux). These acids irritate the mouth in the same manner that they sometimes affect the stomach lining. Thus, the term "mouth ulcer" has become synonymous with "canker sore". 

So remember...lemon balm tea for cold sores, tea bag compresses for canker sores!