What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy's positive effects on mood & skincare are commonly known, but still greatly underestimated. Aromatherapy is a holistic practice that is capable of impacting several levels of an individual's well being. Besides reducing stress, relieving depression & improving one's mental state, essential oils can be used to fight bacteria, virus & fungi, balance hormones, relieve muscular aches & pains, stimulate the immune system, alleviate allergies & digestive problems, and generally improve the quality of life.
For those of us wrapped up in the busy hustle & bustle of modern society, aromatherapy offers a little "nature in a bottle", and an escape from our daily routine- anytime, anywhere.
According to the National Association of Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA):
"Aromatherapy, also referred to as Essential Oil therapy, can be defined as the art and science of utilizing naturally extracted aromatic essences from plants to balance, harmonize and promote the health of body, mind and spirit. It seeks to unify physiological, psychological and spiritual processes to enhance an individual’s innate healing process.
It was the French perfumer and chemist, Rene- Maurice Gattefosse, who coined the term “aromatherapie” in 1937 with his publication of a book by that name. His book “Gattefosse’s Aromatherapy” contains early clinical findings for utilizing essential oils for a range of physiological ailments. It seems vital to understand what Gattefosse’s intention for coining the word was, as he clearly meant to distinguish the medicinal application of essential oils from their perfumery applications.
So we can interpret his coining of the word “Aromatherapie” to mean the therapeutic application or the medicinal use of aromatic substances (essential oils) for holistic healing. As the practice of aromatherapy has progressed, over the years, it has adopted a more holistic approach encompassing the whole body, mind and spirit (energy)."