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  1. Thank you for writing this, it really needed to be written.
    I mostly use essential oils for aromatherapy reasons and use herbs and homeopathics for everything else. For example, instead of putting a few drops of peppermint in water for ingestion, I find that in most cases a cup of hot peppermint tea works better.

      • A cup of peppermint tea has probably 1/40 of the Healing power of a drop of essential oil. Whether you ingest it or soothe it on topically, a concentrated substance will always be more potent than food. It’s supposed to be. Used in conjunction with food, it’s even more powerful. If we don’t support natural medicine and honor that possibly an EO could still be far and away healthier and more useful than other synthesized substances, then we could lose our chance to use it. Companies that destroy the good name of EO’s are the ones that use fillers and other lesser oils to make the product cheaper. That is more of a toxic danger than the company you are probably referring to.

        • I believe in nature and myself. I consider natures way and my own instincts over businesses and bloggers. I trust mother earth provides all we need, including medicines. Common sense would show that highly concentrated forms of natures gifts should be regarded and respected as such! Sadly we have lost touch with simplicity, and have fewer elders and traditions to respect.

          • I heartily agree! The intuition is a powerful aspect of human consciousness, and of course our perverse society doesn’t want to acknowledge this because it would harm the powers that be; if people were guided by intuition and our connection to Nature instead of media and government, I am sure our world would look much better.

            • Awesome response !!! It’s taken me decades to realize the need to trust my intuitions.. Turn OFF the TV.. especially CNN MSNBC FOX and encourage others to do the same.. reconnect with nature.. because that is where you WILL find truth and honesty..

          • Common sense also inspires people to drink water with baking soda to balance pH. Funny, how uncommon the sense can be. I try and look for evidence when treating myself.
            i enjoyed reading this article.

            • My mom is being treated with baking soda tablets for kidney disease right now. And it is working. This is from a kidney specialist, even though I had read it was a treatment as such online.

            • You know, they say that the thing about common sense is that it isn’t common to everyone. This article was meant to help people understand the potential dangers of ingesting essential oil regardless I have and therapeutic grade. Mother nature is a wonderful thing but if I become really sick I go to the doctor.

            • SUSAN…PEOPLE WITH END STAGE KIDNEY DISEASE ARE PRESCRIBED SODIUM BICARBONATE TO CORRECT pH…..this is medically based…but only under medical supervision that checks lab work and has ability to interpret results.

        • Don’t you think that the peppermint tea is made with peppermint tea is made with peppermint oil?? duh… Common sense people. No one should ingest pure essential oils unless they are well educated and know the concentration, as essential oils can be very powerful.

          • I’ve been ingesting EO’s for many years and have no ill effects from them. Peppermint oil is always in my purse and I take it at the first sign of an upset stomach or heartburn and it works almost immediately. I trust EO’s over pretty much every RX med to treat and cure my health concerns.

            • I agree I have never had an adverse affect from any oil I have ingested or used topically… To me the naysayers are only trying to discourage natural means to healing… I disagree with most that had been said..

            • i could use help in using the essential oils verses the abstracts . as it is hard for me to find abstracts like the almond or peppermint here in egypt but they do have the essential oils so can i use these in my recipes? please give me your opinion .

            • The author of this article forgot to mention that because of the natural composition of essential oils our body is able to flush them out once they have done their job unlike other meds which stay in our liver very often and are very hard to flush out unless using a natural detox aiding pill or tea like milk thistle or dandelion. I definatley agree with her in severe cases that of chronic bowel or stomach upset that targeting the root problem of the issue with food based healing should always be the first resort…they shouldn’t be used to mask the signs out bodies give us that there is a problem that needs dealing with:)…they sure are handy and a blessing for the odd times we cheat on the diet our body needs though:)

            • I think it’s important to remember that even though some things are natural does not mean they are healthy to ingest. Essential oils are a high concentration of plant matter. For example- One bottle of lemon oil contains the oil of over 50 lemon peels. Why would I want to add that to my water over a fresh squeeze of lemon juice? Until we know how these oils break down in the body we need to exercise caution. It may be perfectly safe to ingest essential oils but until clinical trials and more research is available we need to exercise caution.

            • I came upon this post because I’m suddenly having digestive issues after putting a drop of wild orange oil in all glasses of water I’ve been drinking for the last month. I am stopping immediately. I feel like a fool. Hopefully, with probiotics and a cleanse I’ll be back on the road to normal soon.

            • Shannon, don’t feel like a fool. You live and you learn. It sounds like you overdid it; a drop of orange oil in every glass of water is too much.

              Here is something I have learned over the years: *Anything truly Potent has the power to harm as well as to heal.* On this Earth there is nothing that deviates from this guideline, except possibly mother’s milk from a healthy mother. Anything can and is dangerous in excess — even water itself: people have died or become ill from drinking way too much water. (Look it up!) Breathing 100% oxygen at normal air pressure for extended periods of time causes illness or death. And with EOs, as they are so pure and so potent, just small amounts occasionally are the best way to go. I find that approach respects the oil and also the plant spirit behind the oil.

              Another thing: our bodies are always changing. What is beneficial for me today, in correcting a health problem or adding a benefit, may become baneful to me a month down the line when the initial problem is corrected. If I am very nervous, some drops of passionflower extract will calm me down and help me think and work more clearly. If I’m in a great, relaxed mood already, those same drops will put me to sleep.

              As a massage therapist, I was using topical lavender oil all the time. I became sensitized to it for a while; it starting causing nasal allergies. (Yes, I was using so-called “therapeutic grade.”) It was too much. I backed away from it, and now I can use it again, as needed, with no problem.

              David Wolfe has an article about ingesting EOs as occasional medicines that I thought was a sane approach. I also don’t buy any one company’s or aromatherapist’s opinion. I try to get a diversity of opinions and experiences. Best wishes to you!

          • Rachelle, because there’s a vast difference between the lemon juice(quite acidic) and the lemon oil(relatively alkaline). Lemon juice can make an acidic stomach more acidic, while lemon oil as an alkaline moves the stomach back to a more normal PH.

            • Absolute rubbish fresh lemon juice when ingested turns alkaline in the human body, in no way will it make the stomach more acidic, anyone who thinks this is wrong.

            • Water with lemon prevents cancer. This is due to the fact that lemons are a highly alkaline food. Multiple studies have found that cancer cannot thrive in an alkaline environment

            • Ignorance cannot be tolerated.The average pH in human blood is about 7.4, and narrowly ranges from 7.35 to 7.45. A slight change outside of this range can be devastating to cells and the entire body. Normal day to day activity affects our pH on a continual basis. This includes the air we breathe, the food we eat, and our urine that is excreted. Something as simple as washing your hands affects the pH on your skin.

              Diet, however, plays a major role in acid base balance in the human body. A healthy diet should consist of about 75% alkaline foods such as vegetables, fruits and non animal proteins. The other 25% of a healthy diet includes acidic foods such as animal proteins (meat), grains, and dairy products.

              How the Body Regulates pH
              There are three important mechanisms the body uses to regulate PH. The first is a chemical buffer, the second line of defense is the respiratory system, and last, is the urinary system. These three mechanisms work together to keep body pH within that narrow range. This tells you that if you try to influence the ph of the human body so that it is either highly alkaline or acidic, it’s impossible because we have a regulatory defence to stop this and keep our ph on the “slightly alkaline” side this of course can be put out of kilter by a bad diet in which the body will be slightly acidic. In this case you will be open to disease and illnesses and a magnet for cancer. So eat healthily drink clean water, stay away from refined sugar and processed foods.

            • Scott,

              Lemon juice is not acidic as you stated…. drinking a glass of water with lemon juice in the morning is the best way to alkalinize your body. A fresh lemon added to your drinking water will also, eventually, make your purified drinking water more alkaline. Though it seems counter-intuitive to think that adding an acidic lemon to your purified drinking water could ultimately produce an alkaline result, it’s important to remember that fresh lemons are also anionic. Once you drink the acidic lemon water, it will become alkaline as your body reacts with the lemons’ anions during the digestive process. Use fresh lemons that haven’t been exposed to air for more than 30 minutes — not lemon juice purchased at the store or lemons that have been cut up and sitting out in the open at a restaurant all day.

        • I am by no means an expert in this field of study even with a health background. After reading many of the comments here, I do agree that essential oils must be treated with the respect they deserve. I worry not so much about ingesting the oils in very low does with infrequent use. What concerns me is the daily use in water. I would have concerns over a course of time what that would do to the esophagus? As with acid reflux the oils could be strong and interfere with the lining of that organ, which could lead to ulcerations and possibly cancer I would think. I have personally taken oils by veggie caps and wonder if it would be a more ideal way to avoid the interaction of the lining of the esophagus. Just food for thought. I have had a personal experience with ingesting oregano. My whole family had influenza symptoms for three to four weeks and myself only four days. My remedy was two drops of oregano twice daily in a veggie cap for four days.

          • Liane, I seem to be experiencing some disruption from putting a drop in my water this last month. I’m stopping immediately and going back to lemon/lime water. I’m also going to go buy a strong probiotic (I take them everyday anyway) today. Hopefully I’ll be feeling normal in the next few weeks.

        • Hi Connie,
          Could you recommend a supplier? I am new to the idea of in testing oils but having watched a great interview with Dr Axe for Food Matters I feel confident to give them a try – in moderation! Have looked online but confused.

        • Essential oils have been around for 2000 years! When the Kings brought frankinsence and myrrh to Mary and Joseph and the Christ child, Jesus, they knew what they were doing. I bet for sure Mary knew what to do with those oils. I truly believe in the times we are living in, when there is nothing much “pure” to put in our bodies, that God is highlighting things like the EOs as well as other natural remedies.
          And how do we measure herbal remedies and homeopathic products and tinctures?
          They are not any more safe than the oils if you take them improperly. We absolutely must do our homework but let’s certainly not rule them out! I see a naturopath who has no problem with ingesting EOs when done properly.

          • This is how misinformation gets spread. The Wise men did not bring erssential oils to Mary. They brought the resins which are completely different, so no Mary had no idea what to do with the oils since she didn’t have any. This is the same reasoning for the fallacy of “Thieves” oil. They used the herbs and plant matter, not the essential oils yet the perpetuation of the fallacy continues because it makes a neat marketing story.

            It is scary how people never seem to let facts, history or education get in the way of what they “know to be true”.

            For everyone saying they are safe to ingest because they have had no problems. No one knows which cigarette is the one that is going to give you cancer, so would you conclude that smoking is safe because “you smoke and you do not have cancer”? I certainly hope not. You have no idea what damage you may be causing your esophagus or liver and you wont until it is too late.

            • Misty, I agree with you that there is indeed a lot of misinformation (including essential oil history, as you have mentioned) because it makes a neat marketing story. Since writing this post years ago, I’ve studied aromatherapy and worked personally with of the top 3 non-affiliated consultants/sourcers in the industry to have a non-MLM education in essential oils. In the near future, I will be sharing much of what I learned in new blog posts.

          • As Misty said below, they did not bring essential oils as gifts to the baby Jesus. They brought priceless gifts of gold and the resins of myrrh and frankincense. At the time of Jesus’ birth, frankincense was worth more than its weight in gold. But it was used for everything from digestive issues to bad breath. It was considered medicinal even back then, which is why it was worth so much. She may have known what to do with it, but may never have actually had it before because it was reserved for royals being so expensive.

        • I am using peppermint essential oil drops and also taking kelp iodine and in less than two weeks it has taken the pain in my gut away. This article has given me the idea to use caution, because I tend to go pedal to the metal on everything I do. For this I am grateful. This said, having too often been on the receiving end of medical incompetence, I am a lot more comfortable figuring out for myself what to do to become well versus asking a western medical doctor.

        • Never ever ingest even diluted essential oils. You never know if you will have a violent allergic reaction or not. I am all for natural healing and holistic medicine/living but not essential oils. Some of these oils are as toxic if not more than hydrocarbon’s; fillers or not. It needs to be studied. A lot of claims are dangerously fueled by marketing and backed by bad discernment.

        • Amen. Connie is right. Also, my point of view only, you seem pretty naive on the subject of EOs in general. And I’m all for, “do no harm” but let’s do it for real, without BigPharm. And without synthetic chemicals. The numbers of people it has healed and helped BY Far Out Numbers the small percentage that called poison control (FACT: it is unknown whether or not essential oils were the Exact Cause in these “statistics” linked above) a study in 2015 (found at science proves lavender (lavendula angustifolia) taken in a capsule as med.form Silexan was Just as effective as Lorazepam an addictive benzodiazepine psychoactive drug. And without the risk of Addiction. I agree more studies should be done. But we, who are interested in Helping with EOs, need to ban together to Get this research done. Not speak negatively against what may be one of the few of our grandchildrens hopes of a Natural healthy World that Can be free of all the things that have recently, and are currently, in our food, our hygiene products, and just every day lives.

        • Right on Connie. The author of this article just happens to now have her own EO company. Conflict? Plus, she quotes Pappas who has his own CPG (?) certification that looks like an official certification but is not and is nothing more than a marketing ploy.

        • Thank you!!! You are absolutely right. Hard not to notice that this person just HAPPENS to have their very own essential oil company, and are promoting their own products. A company like DoTERRA has scientific research to back up their claims, and they have websites dedicated to their users learning exactly how these oils are sourced, distilled and rigorously tested.

      • I saw an article written to add 1 drop lavender essential oil to 12 cups of water plus lots of lemons and honey. I thought that couldn’t be much… and I’ve been having stomach trouble all week, and I’ve been boiling peppermint and fresh ginger while using Xylitol instead of honey, but today added a squeeze of lemon, and put 1 drop of lavender essential oil on my finger, and touched the water with it in 16 oz. That was strong! And now that I’ve read your article I suppose I ought not do it again… but is it safe in really diluted quantities like this or not? Do you have some resources I could read up on too or links? Thanks!

        • Peppermint can make tummy troubles worse, depending on the cause, when consuming them. If you’re trying to fix reflux, lemon OIL, not lemon juice, is better as it’s an alkaline, rather than an acid. Peppermint is great for excess gas and for soothing nausea, but if reflux is the problem, mint makes it worse, as it can come back up and burn the esophagus.

        • Ever think that perhaps it’s the Xylitol?!

          Don’t know about yours, but my brand of Xylitol comes with a big warning on the back: Excessive Xylitol consumption may be diarrhea or abdominal discomfort. (It’s never given me a problem personally, but everyone is different, the warning is on there for a reason!)

    • Peppermint essential oil is still an oil, meaning that it will not mix well with water and it will float on the surface (a bit like if you put olive oil on your bowl of soup). So I would use the combination water/peppermint oil as a mouth wash (which you don’t ingest).

      I’m planning to make dairy free mint ice cream, and use 1-2 drops peppermint essential oil in place of the mint extract (which would be difficult to find). I’m not concerned, as the ice cream has a lot of fat, and the oil should mix well, especially in such a tiny amount.

      • But of course you ingest mouth wash, the oral tissue very quickly absorbs the essential oils into your body…which is a real plus…not a minus, it is rapid and effective.

        • I do not use any OTC or scripts. Mouthwash especially Listerine is a cancer causer. Any product on the skin or in the mouth is quickly absorbed into blood stream. Read What you don’t know might be killing you. by Dr Jeffery McCombs .

          I use all essential oil products. I am a daily Essential Oil user…………………………………

            • Hello,
              I have been adding a few drops of peppermint essential oil to half a glass of water for migraine relief. This has worked for me as much as immitrex or maxalt. I would be interested to know if other people have tried it and what their experience is.

        • Just to clarify: “essential oils” are NOT purely terpenoids.

          Yes, essential oil constituents CAN BE terpenes, but I’m unaware of any essential oil that is comprised entirely of terpenes.

          There are many different types of compounds found in different essential oils, such as terpenes, flavonoids, and phenylpropanoids.

          The “oil” is the combined solution of all of these components.

          Terpenes are responsible for the odor of oils.

          • Hi, as a aromatherapist for 9yrs one of things pointed out to us as we went along was the fact that we dont ingest the oils ,although our instructor did point in France it is not uncommon for some people to take peppermint oil.
            Now living in Spain i Recently came a woman who was selling youngs living oils and the fact they have in their product range capsules of different oils to be taken like supplements, this lady nice as she was isnt a aromatherapist and i did tell her in the end..

            Is it a case of britain and our sue culture that stops people taking oils internally as other countries do or is it as bad as we are told for our livers.

            • Typically the oils used for aromatherapy or massage are not pure enough for ingestion some may be mixed in a carrier oil that is not ingestible.

              This is why you have to really know what you are using and part of what I feel this article is trying to point out.

              There are oils you can ingest but many others used for aromatic use that are very unsafe.

              Know your source and know it well!

              If you’re unsure visit a market such as wholefoods they will have items specifically for internal use that you can feel comfortable taking as a supplement.

      • I am drinking water as I type this with YL lemon EO in it. 1 drop and it does not separate. To look at my water you would not know it is in there. I get the same effect with YL peppermint oil

        • It does separate – maybe not by site, but the last one inch of water is much, much more potent than the first inches of the water in the glass. Ice cubes tend to make it disperse more – unscientific, but I thing the oil must cling to them spreading it out.

          I developed a stomach discomfort after a few weeks of drinking the YL Lemon oil in my water ever afternoon during study sessions. To be fair – I was using about four drops instead of one, but now – one drop trigger the discomfort. 🙁

          • I thought you were supposed to add one drop for every gallon of water. Seems to me, we don’t understand the potency and some people don’t understand the concept of “less is more”. Don’t over-do it!

        • I’ve used YL Lemon oil in water occasionally, and it does appear to not separate. However, in the right light, you can actually see it on top of the water. Additionally, if I’m drinking out of an open glass, the flavor is distinct in the beginning and fades as I finish the glass. I think it just spreads thin enough in a small concentration (1 drop) that it’s just hard to see.

        • It does not separate even if it looks that way, unless you are adding salt.

          If I absolutely think I need lemon oil internally, which is rare, I put 1 drop in a glass 12 ounce bottle with a lid. I shake it well, immediately take a sip, recap and follow with plain water. I might take several sips throughout the day and then just use the leftover water/oil mixture in a load of laundry if I don’t use it within the week. I only use citrus in loads with towels or sheets, as they can stain, especially orange.

          Internally, just a slight bit seems more helpful.

          In general, I experience better results with topical application with a carrier oil.

          My rule is to determine the least amount I need to get the results I seek. Sometimes other natural methods are better for certain purposes.

      • Yes, Pure Oils will float on top of water, I drink mine, gargle and swallow, for antibacterial reasons, for a scratchy throat or bc I like the flavor or to boost my immune systems. However, I do place the two hottest oils, clove and oregano in a capsule before use or mix w a carrier oil.

    • This is a very important topic and I would love to hear more from people who have actually ingested oils and what was their results/expereince. Research has it’s place, however I always take into consideration real life testimony as well. After all, there is a lot of “research” that supports the use of pharmaceutical drugs. Yet my “personal” experience has not been good with drugs.

      There seems to be a lot of promise for using the oils to help combat Crohns which is what my daughter has and continues to battle. She is on no meds; prefers diet and supplements. However, we are looking to get at the root of the problem which I believe the biggest but not the only culprit is MAP. (google it if not familiar) “IF” essential oils can wipe this out without destroying the gut as traditional antibiotics do then I would really like to hear from those people. If it made them worse I want to know that too. I have read essential oil of oregano is recommended for those with Crohns be ingested.

      For example, Jinny Patel advocates for the use of oil of oregano to help heal the gut from MAP. I realize this is not the exact same thing as the essential oil version but interesting nonetheless. Concerned over the issues raised here on killing off good bacteria, I did a quick search and found opinions on both sides. The one I found MOST compelling was a young man who used it in his homemade yogurt as it cultured. It in no way killed off the good bacteria as it still cultured and set up nicely. If it had killed the probiotics then he would have been left with milk. That is very interesting to me and shows we need to continue to study this topic.

      Just something to think about. Thanks for bringing up the topic!

      Here is the link and the comment about it is written by poster “Gary.”

      • I have used essential oils for at least 15 years. I am French but living in the US and working in Kenya. I buy oils in France because most are therapeutic grade since we do have a tradition of ingesting them, and there is a very simple test you can do to know if an oil is really pure: just put one drop of the oil on a piece of paper and check later once the oil has completely dried. A pure essential oil will leave no mark at all. I have only found one brand so far in the US that could pass the Test . I don’t want to give brand names here because I am not a distributor. I signed up about 10 years ago with that company in order to get the wholesale price because I had come across some of their oils and realized that they ‘worked’ . This having been said, I was shocked that the recommended doses for ingestion could be as high as 40 drops at once. Every book I have read mentions 2 or 3 drops of oil because if a certain oil works like an antibiotic, it kills some of the friendly bacteria in your guts just like an antibiotic. And because essential oils like oregano oil are so much stronger than antibiotics, you have to be all the more cautious, and with a good quality product you certainly don’t have to take it for 5 days like most antibiotics.. There are books about the toxicity of the oils and oregano is among one of the more toxic oils. It is mucous irritant and should obviously not be used pure on the skin and diluted in milk or oil when ingested because essential oils DO NOT melt in water . They merely float on the water. This having been said, oregano oil is a highly effective weapon to fight infection as it kills bacteria, viruses, germs, etc,… on contact. The brand of oregano I use ( from a different company) has helped people around me with one single dose for conditions ranging from heartburns due to H.Pilory , a single dose stopped 2 agonizing weeks of heartburn and I later learned that some research had been done in some American university that had shown that oregano kills H.Pilory on contact, ulcers ( just one single dose of a bout 5 drops diluted in milk, you can use almond or other milk if you can’t digest dairy products) , pneumonia of a 3 years old child ( just one drop diluted and the child was cleared the next day “but oils SHOULD NOT be used on children below 3 years of age, unless a drop diluted in a base oil and applied to the sole of their feet). That boy also had typhoid fever and the next day everything had cleared.. I helped someone with amoeba and the result was immediate, someone with HPV, etc, etc,..always a single dose.
        Because essential oils are sold through Multi level marketing in the US ( they are only sold in pharmacies and health food stores in France), there is a problem of lack of real knowledge of the uses / side effects/ contra indications etc… Which is unfortunate because it leads people in a forum like this one, to ask for ‘scientific proof ‘ when we all know that ‘scientific ‘ research is sponsored by pharmaceutical companies and they have no interest in doing research in something like oregano because everybody can grow oregano in their garden , so they would never have a control over the market like they have with the drugs they manufacture. In any case, hundreds or thousands of years of people using a product successfully are enough proof to me.
        So the most important thing to consider is the quality of the oils ( do the little test) and if you have indeed a pure oil, you will not require a high dosage to be effective. The first class I took taught me that with essential oils Less is More. I have not used antibiotics/painkillers/or anything other than homeopathic medicine and essential oils for 15 years.. I think that modern medicine has made amazing discoveries but it fails to have the answers for a lot of illnesses today, like autoimmune diseases , because it still won’t acknowledge basic things like nutrition or ancient systems of medicine that are natural and heal the body rather than keep it sick.

        • very, very good article.
          nearly 78 years, 2 brainstrokes, diabetes.
          micose or mycose on the big right toe and chilblains.
          my internal medicine is:
          for 20 days 1 drop of oregano + 1 drop of tee tree in a table spoon of vergin olive oil, that helps.!
          its difficult to explain.
          on the nail rotten with mycosi i use lavanda spica, tee tree, cipresse and niauli with good results.
          half nail has gone but its clear and sane/healthy now.
          to sleep well: 1 or 2 drops of camomilla romana under the tongue, wonderful!
          peter from italy

          • Yuo say: just put one drop of the oil on a piece of paper and check later once the oil has completely dried. A pure essential oil will leave no mark at all.
            i checked my OREGANO and LAVANDA SPICA oil , after about 17 hour’s NO signs at all, NO mark, clean as bevor.
            i leave in italy, but my oil comes from france 100% pure.

            • Peter, You say your 100% pure oils come from France. This is my first visit to this forum. Is mentioning company/manufacture names permitted? If so can you Peter or anyone recommend a reliable source for purchasing essential oils?

            • Peter or Sophie–could you at least drop a hint as to where we can find these oils? I’m desperate but clueless!

          • Not sure that I would personally trust ingesting tea tree oil, since I have read warnings on various essential oil websites regarding the internal usage of this oil. They say it is strong, that it can be toxic in high dosages, and to never take it internally. I do use tea tree oil topically with a carrier oil on my nails, and I am so thankful that I discovered it. It is a wonderful anti-fungal treatment as opposed to prescription medication with dangerous side effects. Oregano does intrigue me, and I use it topically;however, I am apprehensive about the usage of essential oils taken internally, and am thankful for this article. More to think and pray about….

        • Love what you shared Sophie. I too have wonderful results ingesting oil of oregano. I put 2-4 drops in water in hte morning..gargle with some and then ingest some of the water. It is so powerful around Christmas and winter months. I don’t use it daily but use my intuition on when to use. I also get my Oregano from a PHD and the product is as pure as it gets. Great topic Lauren:)

        • I completely agree with you on the Western Medicine. It seems as though everything has become synthetic, and the drug companies along with most physicians do not want us to know and learn more about the oils. I have ulcerative colitis and the doctors just want to keep pumping me full of medications, things such as chemo meds, high doses of prednisones, and even talked about surgeries…when I started home remedies about 6 years ago, it was to drink whole leaf aloe and chlorophyll in my juice each day. I am now working with one of these down-line companies here in the US that many of you have talked about. I have seen with my own two eyes how this has helped many people with everything from the flu to debilitating migraines. It was a no brainer for me to do this. We do not ingest just any oils, but there are a few that we have, and it has worked great.
          I do hope people will do their research before doing anything to their bodies with these oils or anything.

        • Hi Sophie,

          Might be a bit late but I hope you do get this. Is there a chance that you can share good sources of French essential oil please? I am keen on ingesting them as pharmaceutical medicine make me sick. I have had skin condition since relocating here in the UK. I was seen by 4 university doctors at Royal London Hospital but they failed to diagnose my condition (all my tests were negative). I was healed by GAPS diet. My issue now is on and off flu and perhaps oregano oil would help.

          Many thanks,

      • I ingest some of my essential oils, and have seen great benefits and positive changes in my health. My doctor took me off of my diabetes and blood pressure meds, simply because these oils have reversed the disease process in my body. For someone to say they are harmful to ingest, whether doctor therapist etc. is just trying to take liability off of themselves simply because they don’t want the FDA on their back. While some are dangerous to ingest, most are not. If you want to know what is dangerous to ingest, take a look at your anti depressants, antihistamines, beta blockers, antibiotics etc. Speaking of antibiotics… where do you think most antibiotics derive from?That’s right! Medicinal plants that “big Pharma” adds toxins to and sells to the indoctrinated public as a cure. Really people.. stop drinking the Kool aid that the FDA and “big pharma is selling you guys!!

        • I agree with you Crystal! I cannot take most over-the-counter or prescription meds and these oils have been a blessing to me! The MLM company that I am affiliated with has doctors that oversee the production of the oils, etc…..and are highly trained in the field of essential oils, chemistry, etc. I only ingest oils that are proven safe to ingest. My MLM company has loads of educational materials available to anyone who would like to educate themselves before using or selling the oils. I can walk in to any health food store and purchase essential oils off the shelf with absolutely no information whatsoever. It is up to each individual to educate themselves on the use of essential oils and whether or not ingestion is safe. I think the Aromatherapists are getting a run for their money and it upsets them because these MLM’s could potential take a lot of business away from them. It’s like Doctors not liking it if you see a Holistic Practioner or Chiropractor cuz it takes away from their business. I for one have seen vast improvements with myself, my family and my friends. So far, so good and no side effects like with pharmaceuticals.

          • Cherie,

            I am in the US and belong to two MLM’s because I am in search of education and better prices. I have yet to see/find info from either of them in training. I do see what I think are highly inflated prices without cause except to fund the MLM. You can email me privately at tamerslife at g mail Thanks!!

          • I am hoping you would have some time to relate some of the benefits you have personally seen. I tend to discount any ‘great user comments’ on company websites
            but hearing personally related stories would be useful. Thank you.

      • I have ingested oils daily for the last 6 months and it has done nothing but GOOD for me. I use peppermint lemon and grapefruit in a capsule daily and I also use my morphine bomb when I am in need of it. I have had zero bad effects and all positive things to say about it. I will continue to do so. Yes people have reservations about everything but I for one have no doubt about eo’s ability to help rather than hurt. No matter if you put it on your skin, diffuse, or ingest. You do what you want with your oils and I will do the same.

        • Be very careful using any citrus essential oils that are not usda certified organic! These oils are made from the rind of the fruits, and that just happens to be where all of the pesticides happen to be. After using them for a while, my kidneys really started to hurt. After some research, I stopped taking the citrus oils, and quickly started feeling better. I have not had that problem with the organic oils.

          • Anyone have difficulties in taking too much peppermint oil? I have been taking 2-3 drops in my drinking water; 2 – 4 times a day. Is this too much? Reason I’m asking is I am having mild kidney discomfort, and wonder if that might be the reason. I a so in awe of EO’s because they got me off Prilosec and I feel my ulcer is healed after 15 years. Off the peppermint for now until I see if there is a correlation, but I would like any feedback if you can help me.


            • Take it easy with peppermint oil…I use only 1 drop in 1 gallon glass jug! The purer the oil the less is needed. Since it does not seperate easily I usually swirl it between sips.

        • I ingest regularly as well and I only ingest Certified Therapeutic grade oils in the correct concentrations. However, I do not use the same oils every single day. I have had tremendous results with my IBD and my husband has had success with his blood pressure. I cannot cosign this type of success for every oil company, but the ones I use are certified by an outside company and the certification process does not involve testing a “random sample” like some organic USDA approved oils. Every batch of oil is tested.

      • i havent tried essential oils, but i have been chewing flower petals like tobacco to aquire the oils. at first my stomach didnt take well to it, but then i tried drinking some beer with it, and alittle sea water each day. my health has improved significantly, i sleep like a baby now, and my skin is looking very much more healthy.

      • Favoring anecdotal evidence over peer reviewed research is silly. There absolutely needs to be more funding in research for Complimentary Alternative Medicine so that it is held to the same standards as pharmaceuticals. The placebo effect is very real and it makes me wonder about all the slick marketing of the top two multi level marketing firms of essential oils. First and foremost, they are for profit. I’m not really seeing much difference between these essential oil shills and the big pharma shills who overcharge for their products. I just can’t respect companies who run pyramid schemes while claiming to have all these health cures. The FDA requires big pharma to get all their new products tested before they can make claims. Essential oil companies should have to offer some scientific body of evidence as well. Then it would be more respected by the mainstream. Instead they are creating armies of ill informed and under educated sales reps & distributors in their pyramid schemes who create false dreams for people with ailments and disease, all the while denouncing modern medicine. Inhale away, but ingest at your own ignorance.

        • The MLMs are not pyramid schemes. Every business that employs salesmen operates as a “pyramid” where the owner makes money off of those he has employed. To be a “pyramid scheme” you have to make money off of the fee assigned in joining the organization. Pyramid schemes are illegal.
          Whatever sign up fee the MLMs assign – it goes towards a start up kit or service. You receive something in return for your money. No foul there.
          Now, the two top MLM EO companies are overpriced to fund the overrides the company gives to their independent business associates who work it as a business and recruit others into the business. There are many eo companies that have a quality product for a reasonable price.
          Do yourself a favor and get certified as an aromatherapist and buy these lesser priced oils.
          Most people I know that have signed up under a MLM EO company are not recruiting others into the business. They are making up their inhakers, lotions and roller ball bottles and freely giving them away! It is a hobby and not a business to them.
          I would stick to topical or inhalation use and get an aromatherapy certification to be knowledgeable on all uses of EOS. 😊

      • I ingest essential oils….CPTG oils that are certified by an outside third party, not an in-house authorization process. I’m not sure why that matters, but they are safe. Of course, you must know the strengths and how to dilute each individual oil whether it is for topical, aromatic or ingestible use. Essential oil usage books are a must read before beginning to use essential oils of any kind. Also, I strongly suggest you use a company that labels their oils as topical, ingestable, or aromatic. I will continue to ingest the oils bc they have significantly improved my overall health and my family’s.

    • It might be beneficial to research Young Living essential oils. They are the global leaders in top therapeutic, seed to seal oil. If the research is done on the most beneficial way to distill each plant at certain and distinct ways and the farms are owned by their own company….the health benefits are enhanced and therefore it IS safe to ingest certain essential oils from Young Living

    • I’ve been a devoted essential oil user for several years now, and I have no fear from ingesting them. I do understand that in the US, the pharmaceutical companies are very scared of us oil users because we are causing them to lose business; therefore, they have put tremendous pressure on the FDA to shut the companies down. They are using scare tactics such as this article on the fears of ingestion to make people go back to using Big Pharma’s pills. Personally, I use mine for personal use, and I have gotten off of several prescription meds including all of my sinus meds, thyroid, and pain killers. Why would the public continue to spend billions on allergy relief medicines which usually lead to sinus infections and then surgeries if they thought a drop of lavender would control their symptoms? How many doctors and pharmacists would lose their cash cows if everyone stopped using antihistamines and started applying a drop of lavender under their nose???? Essential oils are only for open minded people who are able to put aside the hypnosis they’re under from advertising from Big Pharma, do some research, and seek natural solutions. God gave us everything we need in the plants, fruits, and leaves. Why did they bring Frankincense and Myrrh to Jesus???? I was very skeptical about essential oils in the beginning, but when Frankincense dissolved a cyst on my dog and Lavender treated my life long allergy to cats, I started studying these strange little potions, and now my life is better, and I’m sure my liver is better! I don’t sell them for profit as I have a good income, but I do purchase mine from YL because I have researched a lot of companies, and this one uses has more control over their product from seed to seal because they grow them pesticide free, harvest, distill, and bottle them without relying third party sources for the most part. That’s my decision based on being a smart consumer, and I am willing to pay more for a higher quality product. I ingest my oils on a regular basis when needed, and I am one of the healthiest and youngest looking 61 year olds among my peers. If people want to continue to keep the doctors and drug companies rich, then that is their choice. For me, I am very particular about what I bring into my home. I only clean with the Thieves cleaners, and I gave away all of my cleaning products, scented candles, air fresheners, etc, and I only diffuse essential oils. I buy Non GMO foods, drink only filtered Berkey water, and eat organic. I use essential oils on my dog to clear his ear infections and any other maladies! All I can say is that I have a circle of friends who are oilers, and we have found alternatives to the standard practices of medicines, and for the others who are scared….oh well!

      • Hi Karen,

        I have a question for you regarding Frankincense. Our dog has a mast cell tumor on his muzzle, we had surgery to take off the majority of it, but it has now started to grow back. I have been using a drop of Frankincense mixed with coconut oil and rubbing it inside his ears once daily to hopefully help shrink the tumor. Based on your experience with your dog (mine is 20 pounds), should I be using this more often than once, and can I give a drop or two of it in his mouth to ingest with the coconut oil (which he loves the coconut oil). I have the YL brand also. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

    • Hello, I am brand new to this site. Thanks for all the valuable information. I have 3 questions: 1) where can I get good training in Canada for Aromatherapy and clinical learning about essential oils. I have been a Registered Massage Therapist for 25 years and want to learn more for my own health, and for sharing with my clients.
      2) I recently saw on a documentary that ingesting a drop of frankincence on the tongue has shrunk brain tumors and can be helpful for avoiding dementia and altzheimers. What do you think?
      3) I’ve been using a drop of peppermint oil on my toothbrush instead of using toothpaste. Are there any risks in doing this?

    • Hello, I am brand new to this site. Thanks for all the valuable information. I have 3 questions: 1) where can I get good training in Canada for Aromatherapy and clinical learning about essential oils. I have been a Registered Massage Therapist for 25 years and want to learn more for my own health, and for sharing with my clients.
      2) I recently saw on a documentary that ingesting a drop of frankincence on the tongue has shrunk brain tumors and can be helpful for avoiding dementia and altzheimers. What do you think?
      3) I’ve been using a drop of peppermint oil on my toothbrush instead of using toothpaste. Are there any risks in doing this?

      • @Eunice, did you find any of your answers here? Did you become an aromatherapist? I am in Canada too and would like to know more answers to this.. also newly dx’d with breast cancer and have been reading lots about Frankincense, I just bought the Karooch brand, of course the dilution ratios suggested online all conflict! Some say Frankincense can be used neat, some say diluted only, various concentrations suggested, etc.

        I have bought a doTerra Frankincense on eb*y (I just cannot afford their website pricing, I’m on welfare for crying out loud!) but it hasn’t arrived yet, can hardly wait to smell it!

        I’m a bit scared to ingest it but I am more afraid of the cancer!

        Anyone has any tips for me I’d love to hear them and thanks!

    • Worst article ever written on Essential Oils! No doubt was written by someone trying to scare people away from using high grade oils! If your going to make such sweeping vast statements – please site your references and periodicals to back up your statements.

    • When using the most potent oils such as Oregano or Peppermint, you MUST add 5 drops coconut oil per drop of essential oil or use 1 drop per 4 oz. of a fat based liquid. I need these oils to rebuild my good bacteria for I was on infused antibiotics for 8 weeks and they want me to continue with 6 more months of oral antibiotics. I said, “Only if you want to kill me.” This country overdoses antibiotics, which contributes to many elderly deaths. I will not die!

  2. This is a well-rounded article and I am glad you brought it up! I think we need to respect our micro biome more than we have in the past and I’m excited that the micro biome is becoming a well studied aspect of health! Thanks for this article!

  3. Thank you so much for bringing this up! As a trained aromatherapist I am absolutely horrified by the advice I see online for the ingestion of essential oils. I would never advise ingesting essential oils unless under proper supervision from someone with the appropriate training. I, and probably most other aromatherapists, do not have this level of training. And companies selling essential oils certainly shouldn’t be giving this advice out just to aid sales. It’s irresponsable and frustrating to see. Caution is definitely needed with essential oils which are great when used sparingly and for topical application only. Let’s keep spreading the message!

      • I am considering using essential oils on my 12 year old daughter. She has a slightly enlarged thyroid, weight gain and stretch marks. I was to rub grapefruit oil on her stomach and 1 drop in her water 1x per day and peppermint oil on her neck. Is this safe for her.and anymore recommendations.c

        • Please see a medical professional for the thyroid issue. This is not something, especially in a child during puberty, that you should attempt to diagnose and treat yourself. Weight gain and stretch marks happen to many girls at her age and with a healthy diet of whole foods and plenty of activity it should resolve itself. Having been down a similar road when I was young, I think the absolute worst thing you can do is draw attention to it by rubbing grapefruit oil on her belly. Just focus on her overall health. 🙂

          • Stop eating wheat, rye, oats (gluten). So no bread, cake, donuts, pop tarts, cereal, gravies (unless made without flour) or fried foods battered in flour.
            The weight will fall off.

    • There are different schools of thought regarding aromatherapy and internal use of essential oils. For instance, the French model approves of internal use (always with caution) whereas Americans do not typically advocate internal use. As always, do your own research and come to your own conclusions. A blanket statement saying that ingesting any essential oils (regardless of purity, distillation practices, testing, etc) is foolish or dangerous is an uneducated statement. And disregarding some oils because they’re not certified as organic is also foolish. I only buy meat that has come from animals that weren’t subjected to added hormones, antibiotics, steroids, etc. But it’s not always organic meat – the organic certification isn’t really necessary if you trust the source your products are coming from and you know that they were handled properly through all stages of development.

      • “Models” of aromatherapy is a complete myth made up by MLM. This “French method” is by PRESCRIPTION only.. So this means in order to take an oil internally an MD had to prescribe it.

        • Not true, Get educated before you post. It’s not models of aromatherapy….it’s different theories of uses of oils. There are 3 basic theories, and the French had pure oils available to them making them safe for ingestion. The other regions that had “theories” for use had oils available to them that had synthetic materials….making them not safe to ingest….so they didn’t believe in it. Also, the French theory came from uses of biblical times, there were no MD’s to prescribe it.

          • Hi Amanda, thanks for our insight. I find it interesting how often it is recommended that you check with your doctor before taking natural medicine such as herbs and essential oils when most doctors will know absolutely nothing about them. Sadly, most of them will discourage you to going the natural route, especially in the US but will have no problem prescribing pharmaceuticals with dangerous side effects.

    • So who *does* have the level of training needed to supervise/ recommend ingestion? We all no our doctors have no clue, so if even certified aromatherapists do not, where does that leave us?

      • There simply isn’t enough modern, empirical evidence available: nobody knows what ingesting essential oils really does at this point.

        It leaves us at the point of needing more clinical studies.

          • I would really like an answer to this,. Who can we trust to supervise our internal intake of essential oils if no truly knows how it affects the body? I know people who have been using them internally for over 12 years now (as well as to their family members… including children) …. They are healthier than most people I know and aren’t getting over-run by candida and other poor flora related ailments. Too many people dismiss personal experience and opt for absolute scientific research. Here’s a nugget in regards to scientific research that may make some ponder as it does me… Chemotherapy and anti-depressants (among others) have tons of scientific research supporting them…. yet many people are getting sicker by taking them. I speak from first hand experience. I was mistakenly diagnosed with depression years ago (when I was truly just tired and overworked) …. Thanks to these scientifically proven drugs, I became suicidal and almost died from some adverse effects to my heart and central nervous system. Thank you scientific research.
            I have been taken oils internally and externally for over 2 years now and will continue to do so. I think I trust personal experience (over 12 years worth) over scientific research which can be easily adulterated to show the results that they want to see.
            As for Dr. Pappas mentioned in the article. He now works for and with the company of oils I take. I have listened to some of his work and have seen how he tests these oils … so in short, I am good thank you. I will not wait for scientific research to show me what I already see in others around me. I won’t blindly follow a salesperson’s advice, mind you, but I know integrity when I see it… do the research … don’t just skim through research ,,, study it… Go deeper.
            Thank you Lauren for what you do. It truly shows that you care about people. Don’t think that this post is meant as a blasting. I share the same care you do, and have wondered about internal use of oils for a few years now. I did the research and decided that … for me and my family … The benefits of taking these oils highly surpasses the theoretical dangers.
            I’ve also been working as a Holistic Nutritionist for almost three years now as well and was trained in essential oils by a colleague that is not affiliated with the company of oils I use ,… and she has been taking them internally for as long as she could remember. Less is more when taking them internally. One drop goes a long way.

            Please note that not all oils are created equal, some companies mix in synthetic compounds that will not be assimilated in the body … to anyone reading this … do your research
            God bless you all

            • Thanks for sharing your story….it was really helpful for me to here. And I agree Lauren put out a great article for us all to learn more. Blessings!

            • Beautiful testimony! I use the same oils of which you speak, since Sept 2013, and I also have personally had wonderful results with using EO’s internally. A few months ago, I began having severe stomach pain (the same pain which had sent me to the hospital a couple years prior), and I took peppermint EO internally (in a capsule) and rubbed it on my stomach….and in less than 5 minutes the pain was gone! That is only one of many success stories I have. Plus, I know certified aromatherapists who have no problem with laypeople taking these EO’s internally. Just use common sense. Of course you’re not going to drink a whole bottle of oil – that would probably be harmful! And definitely do not take any EO internally that specifically says “do not ingest.” (In fact, I would avoid using that kind of EO period. What you put on your skin is absorbed into your body anyway.) But I did read a study where it showed that an essential oil (I forget which one) was able to differentiate between harmful bacteria and good bacteria – it did not harm the Lactobacillus! I thought I saved the link somewhere but I can’t find it….I’ll come across it and will have to share here when I do. Internal usage of EO’s in America is a fledgling field. Remember that just because something isn’t popular doesn’t mean it’s wrong or bad! 😉 I encourage people to do their own research and to feel comfortable with whatever they do with EO’s….I certainly do not want to force anyone to do something they personally feel would harm themselves or their kids! But I will continue to share my story and help others find wellness. 🙂

            • Hi Francesco,
              Among many others I’m sure, I’m so discouraged by trying to research EOs and getting overwhelmed that I keep just giving up and not using them. Although this is an old post, I noticed your mention of Dr.Pappas now working for the company from which you get your essential oils. While I am grateful to have found him as the only source so far who appears to be both scientifically-based and trustworthy as being “independent,” the best I could do was go back to his Essential Oils Facebook page and try to see for which company that you stated he now works. However, I can’t seem to find anything on his page. I am at that frustration level again after more hours of fruitless searching for “truths” and “reputable” companies; would you be comfortable providing me with the name of the oils you use? If I can at least find a company who is endorsed by a prominent EO research figure, it would give me much better peace of mind in my search. Thank you so much.

            • Just found this site and am hopeful for help. Like you, Francesco, I fell into the antidepressant trap and was slowly damaged for 7 years. I am now 1 year off the SSRI thru what was a brutal, awful and sometimes almost suicidal withdrawal. I continue to suffer from some of the effects such as migraine like headaches and pressure, nausea and worsening tinnitus. Please tell me which oils helped you and how you used them? I know that first hand experience is often the best advice. I am grieving the loss of my wonderful career in health care and want to go back before I get too old. I am in no shape to go back now, and get no help from doctors except to try and throw more pills at me. No thanks. God Bless you and I am happy that you have found relief. Only a fellow sufferer can possibly know the misery of it.

    • I eat them all the time as food flavorings, have been for 20 years. No adverse effects as of yet.
      Mint or lemon ice cream, almond cookies, etc. Mainly the oils that are from foods as ylang ylang cookies are terrible.

    • I understand with you! As we don”t even no the contraindications with drugs too, we don”t exactly know what will happen. That would be great if there will be more education on it!

  4. Wow, this is an interesting and timely post for me. I’ve struggled with mono for almost six months and and on top of that, we discovered mold in our basement. A couple weeks ago, I started taking thieves oil internally. It has been the only thing that has made me feel better thus far. My health practitioner advised me to not use it long term and warned it can wipe out the gut flora. Now I’m having second thoughts about using it at all. I can attest to the fact that essential oils are very powerful. I felt like I had taken an antibiotic when I first started taking thieves. I almost immediately had relief from my mono/mold symptoms. But, thank you for posting this, Lauren! I will definitely be reconsidering using the oils internally!

    • I’m glad you are working with a health practitioner who told you about the risks of taking the Thieves oil long term. There is definitely a time and place for antibiotics, and I think that essential oils are a better alternative than conventional antibiotics, although I really want to see a lot more research in the area.

    • My niece had mono 2 years ago. She researched online for natural cures. She cured herself by taking/drinking organic unrefined coconut oil daily (I think a few tablespoons, though not sure.) As well as an organic whole food multi-vitamin and an organic whole food vitamin C supplement. She found all this info online through lots of vigilant research. It took her about 3 weeks, but then she quickly started feeling so much better. I’m just sharing this info with you in case interested. Something you might want to discuss with your doctor and see what he/she thinks? I have a friend who started taking coconut oil for something else and she says it upset her stomach, making her feel worse, so further proof to proceed with caution when taking anything and to listen to your body because what works for one doesn’t always work for another.

      • I had mono in high school and it only lasted 3 weeks. Most people who had it that year were out of school for longer so I’m not saying it didn’t help your niece… … It’s just hard to know for sure.

  5. this was a great article to share with clients to warn against unsupervised use of oils internally! Internal use does seem to be pushed far too hard by those with the business model of selling oil. The food industry has taken note of the antibiotic effects! Have you noticed that food manufacturers have started using “extracts” like rosemary in things like turkey burger to retard spoilage- not sure how well the effects of that have been investigated!

    I’m really glad to have this group as a resource!

    • Generally food additives fall into the GRAS standard (Generally regarded as safe), I am curious why we indiscriminately consume these foods yet question the use of essential oils. Yes, do your research on these oils. Yes, oils you can buy in the store are not safe for consumption because of the lack of regulation and the additives that are used in them. I can only speak for myself, but the oil company that I am affiliated with to my knowledge has never advised against consulting with a professional (and no, we don’t sell thieves oil). I take some of these articles with a grain of salt. Have you ever read the possible side effects of your medications? Do you hear the ones that state quite boldly, “may cause coma or even death”? Are you taking into consideration what actually is Generally Regarded AS Safe? Everything I have been taught so far with the company I choose to affiliate with absolutely recommends diet and exercise changes first and foremost. I ask that you consider where the motivation for many of these nay sayers is coming from. The CEO’s with big pharma are sitting in their mansions and taking luxury vacations; while our CEO’s are doing missionary trips to improve not only the lives of their Advocates, but the lives and standards of living for everyone.

      • I keep seeing this rebuttal that if you are against ingesting oils, what about food additives, what about other meds, cokes do more damage, etc. Have you stopped to consider that maybe we do watch all those things as well? I do watch for additives and try to avoid as much as possible, grow some of our own food, raise animals, only takes meds when it is absolutely necessary, and don’t drink soft drinks at all. It’s not an either or kind of thing. That’s why I wouldn’t ingest an oil every day just because. They ARE powerful, we should use them with the proper respect.

        • Hi Charlene, thank you for your response. Even though I do agree with Fiona on this I do believe in what you said regarding respecting the oils. They are not sugar pills that once can pop blindly… but that doesn’t mean they aren’t safe to ingest (some brands… not all … I have done my research).

          As a holistic nutritionist, I hear people telling me that they watch what they put in their mouths and are careful not to eat too many processed foods,etc, etc. But as is my protocol to treat them, I require that they fill out an honest 3 day food, sleep and mood diary. Some decide to back out at this point and those that do fill it out are surprised as to all the toxins (and harmful additives) that they are actually ingesting without knowing it..

          If I may, this line bothers me, “Have you stopped to consider that maybe we do watch all those things as well?. With respect, it bothers me because you honestly cannot speak for all the people that read these comments… only yourself. I respect your opinion, as well as you probably should consider respecting Fiona’s.

          Not many people are as blessed as you are to be able to grow your own foods and raise your own animals. I am happy to hear that you have access to this.

          As for ingesting oils everyday just because … I agree. They have their purpose and they are to be used for their specific intent. That is what I teach my clients and hope to pass on to others. Not because they can kill you, but because I know too much of a good thing could easily have the opposite intended affect. One drop goes a long way.
          Take care and God bless

        • I find it interesting that a few people commenting assume that people will simply ingest anything that is suggested to them…I do not find that to be true. Those same people must think it is perfectly fine to take their brand new prescription to their local pharmacy, begin to ingest this “doctor” suggested pill and never read the side effects that are possible.

          I am a very elderly person and intend to always turn to nature and exhaust all her suggestions before blindly accepting the chemicals offered to me.

          The secret here is to investigate the natural world, get to know your body and accept the consequences for your decisions. I can assure you (from experience) that the physician who is such a nice person nor the pharmaceutical company will take responsibility for what can be a lifetime of very bad “side effects”. I vote for nature.

  6. I’m glad someone is putting this out there, it appalls me as a skincare professional and mother the dangerous advice I read daily pertaining to essential oils.

    That being said, I have read in the past Dr Pappas tests oils for DoTerra so you might want to explore further before recommending him as an unbiased source.

      • You’re both right, Dr. Pappas does independently test for doTERRA and other companies. But I have seen him repeatedly state that he will NEVER endorse one specific essential oil company over another on the Essential Oil University facebook page. This gives me complete confidence in the information he provides.

        • Tisserand FTW!! He’s so awesome. I’m affiliated with a company that has a Seed to Seal promise and I trust them completely. You can not beat a company that plants, raises, harvests, distills, tests and bottles ALL of their oils. None of the other companies can say that. Know where your products come from! Obviously don’t ingest a whole bottle of E.O.

          I also almost ALWAYS cross reference Tisserand’s book, Essential oil Safety. It’s a great book for those wanting to know SCIENTIFIC E.O. facts and studies.

    • Dr. Robert Pappas may test oils for many companies, but is on the payroll of DoTerra. They do not buy anything without his approval. He regularly speaks disparagingly of Young Living, often in a very unprofessional manner. He is hardly an unbiased authority on essential oils. He may not publicly endorse a company, but anyone with knowledge of these two companies clearly discern his alliance after listening to him for a short while. There may be nothing of the sort of certified theraputic grade, but nonetheless, neither is certified pure theraputic grade. Each company holds that power of certification, simple marketing. It’s so sad that a company must bash another to gain success, instead of allowing these powerful gifts of God prove their own powerful benefits.

  7. I think this is a good caution for people to think. I use young living, and I know the research behind them seems to be of a higher grade quality than other oils, but I am always cautious. It is tooted as “food grade”, meaning that you can ingest them safely, but only in small amounts, and only certain oils. It’s good to do mega research. I didn’t even think about gut flora, and I will definitely pay attention to this as it develops. I don’t ever ingest any of the essential oils that are only meant for diffusing, etc. BTW, for the person who was using Thieves, it is almost more efficient topically applied. I use it all of the time for throat etc, by mixing with a carrier oil (usually coconut) and rubbing it topically on the neck, throat, glands, feet etc. Thanks for always posting great articles!

      • Organic labeling only means the land has been pesticide free for 3 yrs. YL ONLY purchases land that has NEVER had pesticides used. So I guess you’re right as Young Living is better than organic. You might want take a look at their website that explains their unmatched 20yr strong history. What other oil company can say that? Ask vibrant blue oils if they own their own farms…if they are only brokers of oils you may not know what you’re putting on your skin which is being absorbed into your bloodstream right? I put my trust in YL’s Seedtoseal. What process does vibrant blue oils tell you they use? I find it interesting that you’ve only commented to comments above that were praising your article and not to the others of us who supported Young Living. Young Living oils and products have and will continue to change peoples lives/health for the better…aromatically, topically and internally.

        • Agreed, Kathy. I use essential oils in my current profession and for my family’s health and wellbeing. As a farmer’s wife (raising all natural grassfed beef, chicken, lamb & pork) and an avid gardener, myself, it is imperative to “know your farmer”…so many people (here in the US, esp.) are removed from where their food is coming from, so it makes sense that they wouldn’t care/question where there eos are coming from. Here is an excellent link posing twelve questions to ask any essential oil company. One more additional book, by author, Dr. David Stewart is .. Chemistry of Essential Oils Made Simple: God’s Love Manifest in Molecules. The usage of Aromatherapy, is as much of an art form as it is science. In fact, it’s a beautiful blend of both. This comprehensive, brilliant book is quite lengthy, yet easy to read and understand the beautiful marriage of art and science in approaching the study of essential oils. There need not be fear when adopting the French school of aromatherapy and subsequent usage of essential oils if you know their quality (reference first link). EOs typically contain over 500 constituents, and it is foolish for us to think we will ever understand them fully, here on earth. We can start, however, by understanding their unique chemical makeup and how quantum physics affects their outcome. In this way, we are able to revel in the beautiful mysteries of God and His glorious creations!

        • I so agree Kathy, I have been ingesting YL oils since 98 when the medical field gave me 6 months. was on 50 or so pills a day, with in a year I replaced everything with oils, and herbs, and am still here. I ingest them daily. But I do agree also, it makes a huge difference in where the supply is coming from, how it is prepared, and how it is grown. Most I would not touch.

        • I do not use YL Oils, but I can tell you that I was driving down Interstate 15 in UT and there were signs posted along the highway that YL was developing the land for planting herbs used for essential oils. How can land that sits near a major interstate be used to grow “organic” or “pesticide” free herbs when you’ve got thousands of cars passing each day emitting toxic carbon monoxide and other pollutants?!! Unbelievable to me!

          • YL doesn’t claim to grow only organic. Pesticide-free means exactly that, -YL does not use chemical pesticides. No deception revealed here.
            As for cars driving by near where crops are growing, um, that would be the VAST MAJORITY of literally ALL of the food supply generated here in the U.S. Do you honestly believe that if an “organic farm” is located, say, 5 miles outside a town and away from a major road, that this somehow means the plants escaped airborne and/or water cycle toxins? Seriously, no. There is no escape. Even “certified organic” fields may have once been bombarded with chemical pesticides (for anyone who isn’t aware).
            Your car, like mine, contributes to the toxins in our environment. At least YL is part of a larger pull of options to *better* our chances for optimal health.

        • It would be nice if someone not associated with the company would attest to the quality. They put out the marketing and their sales rep regurgitate it. I would be interested if there was an impartial third party that would. Just the company “saying so” is not enough in my book.

          That is what the Organic seal does. There is not such thing as “beyond organic” other than in a sales pitch.

  8. Thank you SO much for writing this. As a natural living blogger myself, I cringe at everyone jumping on the bandwagon for essential oils and basically prescribing oils for ailments. They are NOT doctors, have NO training and quite frankly, it really seems like it’s all about selling the oils to make money. I am SO happy to see someone has spoken out against the EO buzz.

    Yes, essential oils are incredibly healing. BUT, if you are not a certified aromatherapist or have some training with aromatherapy, you have absolutely NO business to try and suggest an oil to cure an ailment.

      • I too, am glad to have found this article. I have been attending some MLM eo classes, & did buy a starter kit. I do like some of the oils, but some seem to irritate, even aromatically. Also, one of the blends that are claimed to help slim you, adversely affected my GERD.
        But most of my apprehension lies in hearing the sales women suggest using on children, or babies especially. I’ve been researching this topic myself, & most of what I find strongly discourages use ON or IN babies in particular!.
        It’s interesting to note that every time I share an article like yours, Lauren (on fb etc), I will then see the article deleted and a post written to clarify their products & demean what you have said. Interesting topic, for sure:)

    • An essential oil distributor is prohibited from “prescribing” oils or even suggesting that they “cure” or “heal.” If you have heard a distributor making these claims, they obviously haven’t done their research and may likely be tapped into the world of EO’s with the sole intention of making money. But many, like me, are interested and educated about natural living and holistic wellness and have experienced positive results from using EO’s, and want to share the benefits with others on their own wellness journey. Please don’t assume that sales equals money-grubbing. I research and share what I learn, just as you do. It’s just one part of my personal exploration and effort to help people live well.

  9. Do you have IBD or IBS? They are very differant things and while you say you have IBD, you also call it Irritable Bowl Disease. There is no such thing. There is, however, INFLAMTORY bowel disease or Irritable bowel SYNDROME. One is an autoimmune disorder with no cure (IBD) and the other is not (IBS).

    • I am well aware of the difference between IBD and IBS – I have ulcerative colitis, which is a type of inflammatory bowel disease, and it was my typo referring to it as irritable bowel disease. I’ve corrected the typo. (Dr. Tisserand also referred to it as “irritable” bowel disease so I’ve fixed that in his quote, too)

      • I had a friend with severe colitis, she uses doTERRA, when she came over, I gave her a drop of frankincense in her water, she called me later to tell me her stomach didn’t cramp for the first time in 5 years that day. I work with some highly prestigious doctors as well who highly recommend certain oils for internal use. But yes, people can for sure over do it, I used too much one day and it gave me a headache, luckily they are organic material and metabolize out of the body very quickly as opposed to a synthetic fat soluble toxin. I would be be very leary of using any brand as some are highly synthetic and would for sure make someone sick. I can smell the difference. Because of my autoimmunity if I get around cheap oils or synthetic which most actually are, whether labeled pure or not, will make you very sick! I only rely on those tested by 3rd party labs for synthetics and toxins.

      • No, it is an inflammatory bowel disease. The original person’s comment is correct. I also want to make the comment that you shouldn’t be willing to put anything on your skin that you aren’t willing to ingest. With ingestion you have salivary enzymes, stomach acid and first pass liver clearance to protect you from potential harm. Placing things on your skin or inhaling them allows them to go directly into your bloodstream without any “check points”. So regardless of route of use, the quality and purity of a product needs to be ensured. Dr. Pappas is a great resource, learn as much from him as you can. I can’t make any comments about your other resources.

  10. It depends on the research you read and what fits your body. I was able to go off 6 medications for chronic bronchitis/asthma – I was on these meds for 21 years!! (and many others) . Taking a few drops of oils everyday for a few months helped me to do this. Now I am good — I use a respiratory mix inhaled daily to *maintain*, but if I get a cold or virus I am going to take the oils internally because they work and they do not have side effects like pharmaceuticals do. Check out There is quite a bit of research with Frankincense and cancer – especially Doterra’s DDR Prime. The oil I use from Doterra are tested by 2 laboratories to ensure they are pure.

    • Can essential oils help illnesses? Absolutely. And I’m glad you’ve had so much success! But there are other methods that can be used with or without essential oils to reach drastic health improvements, without the potential harm of ingesting essential oils. As I state, if you wish to ingest oils, it is my recommendation to do so under the guidance of a practitioner.

        • Thank you for your concern Kathy. I would actually recommend everyone do their homework on everything they put in their mouth… no matter what company it comes from. Oils have been getting a bad rep because they are now being sold by individuals with no or little training. What some don’t know is that some of these companies offer extensive courses and training but some individuals aren’t doing their homework before going out and selling. I am not doing this for the profit potential … I am doing this for the health potential I will lose sleep at night if I wrongly recommend something to someone without doing my homework first.
          Being a Christian as well teaches me that I should love my fellow neighbor as my self and to treat others as I would like them to treat me. Money is not evil, love of money is … and unfortunately it is this love that is driving a lot of people from multiple companies (MLMs or traditional companies) to place their wallets above the health of their potential clients.

          Please let us stop bashing this company and that company. The integrity of both companies, in my opinion, is honorable. Just because some members aren’t doing their “job” properly … doesn’t make the company evil.

          I honestly believe we were put on this earth as instruments of peace and love. That is why I do what I do …
          Take care Kathy. God bless you

          • Amen Francesco! I actually use both of “those” companies, though I have purchased the wholesale membership in one of them. I actually think both companies produce great products, and picked one based on a few factors, though not because the other is a bad company. I’m so tired of the fierce competition in the interest of making a buck. I didn’t even sign on to sell it, just to get the discount (and allow others to as well).

            I do agree with the untrained attempting to make money over using common sense. I love sharing ideas for how to use them, but none involve ingesting directly. That makes me nervous, which is why I love this article. Any sharing I do is based on broad research, not just what I’ve learned through my “company”. Mostly I just love simple ointments, sprays and household cleaning.

    • Daily drops of thieves oil as well as of wild oregano oil (in filtered water, spread out throughout the day) when anyone in my family or I get sick with a cold or flu- works wonders for us. But we only take when coming down with or having a virus. Can’t remember the last time we used Advil or Tylenol, or any pharmaceuticals when sick. It’s been several years.

      • Thank you for this thoughtful post, Lauren. The potential effect of internal use on gut flora (among other things) is a discussion I think the natural living community needs to have.

        Regarding the use in your recipe, I recently checked with a very well-respected aromatherapist on the subject because I have a few similar recipes. She told me that one drop can replace 1 teaspoon peppermint extract in a recipe provided that the recipe contains a significant amount of fat. I’d say the buttermints qualify on the fat scale 🙂

      • So ingesting “a little” Essnetial oils is ok? Indeed, doing research is über important. Obviously you I have ingrested essential oils before doig “so called research” and you seemed to have handled it ok, even having ulcerative colitis. I’m sure you made sure that your essential oil was ingestible before adding it to a recipe that you were going to ingest. This topic I believe is extemely controversial as many have had great success using essential oils topically, automatically, and internally. There is a plethora if testimony to the effectiveness of replacing harmful chemic medications that have even worse side effects with essential oils that support that bodies natural healing mechanism. There are over 100 hospitals in the US that are using the brand of oils that I use with my family and share with friends. Education is important when using essential oils. If you ate looking for negativity about essntial oils, you will find it. It is articles like this one that put a HUGE danger sign on something that can actually help when used properly. Essential oils were human’s original medicine. Our society has evolved so far beyond what is “safe” when it comes to food and medicine. Essential oils are volatile aromatic liquid extracted from the plant. When care has been taken from selection of the seed to be planted, to the land selection for it to be cultivated, and the care taken during the growth and harvest, as well as the extraction and distillation process of providing the oil and sealing it in the bottle, you have the ultimate remedy to support the body when it is compromises by free radicals and toxins. “Let thy food by thy medicine, and thy medicne be thy food.” -Hippocrates I truly believe that this is what you are trying to share with your blog. However, this article takes the back seat for me.

        • This is what brings up a red flag for me, when I hear over & over the exact words repeated to “sell” the benefits of a company’s product in MLM. For instance “Essential oils are volatile aromatic liquid extracted from the plant. When care has been taken from selection of the seed to be planted, to the land selection for it to be cultivated, and the care taken during the growth and harvest, as well as the extraction and distillation process of providing the oil and sealing it in the bottle, you have the ultimate remedy ..”. I’m not trying to be negative or nasty, I just want to know where these seeds are developed, where all this pure land is, who carefully cultivates, grows & harvests it, where it is extracted & distilled & sealed – JUST for this one specific company, to make this company the one & only BEST company anywhere? Common sense tells you all these companies that claim to the THE one & only best, can’t have their OWN private organic land or jungle. Whenever there is a MLM system, there has to be a TOP enchilada, & it usually isn’t the one your told about. It’s most likely the one over ALL or many of the MLM companies. Just sayin’

  11. Thank you for this article. I was just in a discussion about this recently. The holistic practitioner with whom I was speaking had the exact same concerns. With 2 independent sources giving the same message, I will take it to heart. I had questions, and now I have answers.

  12. Thank you for the informative post! I’ve started dropping blogs that push the MLM essential oils because I’m sick of all of the misinformation and non-stop advertising. I also get sick of the recipes that call for oil blends that are only produced by a specific MLM company. I don’t want to use a proprietary blend, I want to mix my own oils so I know exactly what each one is doing!

    • Unless you have a working knowledge of the chemistry of essential oils, you should not make your own blends. Each oil has its own frequency and constituents, and if you combine them you risk negating the effects of each individual oil. If you want to use a combination of oils, it is better to layer them than to mix them together.

  13. In all fairness, I ingested lemon oil in my water a couple months ago because when we do eat out (which is infrequently), I ask for water. The water locally is not the best and I didn’t want to squeeze the sliced lemons in my water for sanitary reasons. I took the ‘advice’ of a friend (and rep) saying that it’s safe but then I read some other articles and thought ‘shame on me’ for failing to understand what I was consuming when I encourage others to do that with everything they put into their mouth!

    I took a step back and said from that point forward I will no longer be ingesting oils until I know for certain that they’re safe (show me the *independent* science that says it is) and / or from a skilled and licensed practitioner. When I put the lemon oil in my water, it was the first time I had ingested an oil. Before this and for the last 10+ years I have only used oils on my skin and more recently, in the last 3 years, in my DIY home care products. I will stick to the basics and only use oils that I’m comfortable with and that is very limited indeed. I use tea tree oil, lavender, lemon, and peppermint. I also have grapefruit, and eucalyptus but I haven’t used them yet. I have used rosemary on an occasion when I made dryer balls. But I also have a rosemary bush in my backyard so I took from it after a one-time use of the oil.

    I also am still waiting to see the ‘third party’ testing from an EO company. Third party means non-bias / non-affiliated and the one they use is not truly *third-party.”

    I shared this post with a licensed midwife and it has also been pinned. Though I sometimes don’t agree with your posts, I am glad that you have the courage to speak on such polarizing topics. This post I do agree on.

    • doTERRA does 3rd party testing. You can be assured of the quality of their oils. Also, consider this…your skin is your largest organ. If you put an essential oil on topically, you can bet it will be absorbed internally in a matter of seconds. So basically what this site is quibbling about is the method of internal delivery.

      • YES! This is my exact point all the time. While I am a YL user myself, it holds true for all brands. If you WOULDN’T put it in your mouth, you shouldn’t put it on your skin. The molecular structure of essential oils means no matter how/where you apply them, they will penetrate all of your cells. I ingest oils every ding dang day, as do HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS IF NOT MILLIONS of people all over the world. Some people should bother more with what’s in the drugs and “food” they’re taking before assuming God’s plants are the thing that’s going to kill them. Sheesh.

        • Thank you Emily. I truly enjoyed reading your post and fully agree (would have agreed even before I started using the oils I use now).
          Let us not forget the other method of using oils … Aromatically …. When we put oils in a diffuse (sometimes daily) where exactly do these molecules go? We breath them into our lungs and some land on our skin as well.
          If someone feels that they shouldn’t be ingesting oils internally, they should start considering to stop using them altogether as some, if not most, will get into your system one way or another.

          As far as reliable practitioners go … I worked for one and she introduced me to taking these oils internally (she is not a rep for any business, as a matter of fact she avoids mlms like the plague …her loss, but I love her just the same).
          God bless you

  14. I’m sorry but ulcerative colitis IS inflammatory bowel disease, an autoimmune disorder. In no way is it related to IBS! It is also not from an imbalance of gut flora. I’m facing having my colon removed because of IBD. I WISH it was from an imbalance of gut flora!!

    • My nephew had his colon removed many years ago and has suffered with many health challenges, it DOES NOT fix the problem, it is far better to go with lauren’s advice and try to keep you colon intact. it is possible to manage the disease, removing the colon will just give you a different set of problems.

    • A friend of mine had a part of her colon removed too and she isn’t fairing well at all since the operation. It’s been years now and she is still having issues. Before getting a body part chopped off, do your homework, get second and third opinions. Even a simple gall bladder removal can have detrimental effects on the body years later.

      Jamie, I would recommend you follow Lauren’s advice. I read the link she posted and saw the approach she took. In case you didn’t go, I will post a little of it here:

      My Healing Regimen

      Currently, I use a combination of the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Diet, and the Autoimmune Paleo Protocol (AIP) for gut-healing. I also incorporate supplements and homeopathic remedies. For mind-and-body healing, I do yoga for relaxation, go to an acupuncturist, utilize Energy Medicine techniques, and practice Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). You can read about my experiences with additional wellness products that I use on My Favorites page. Most importantly, I seek physical, emotional, and spiritual healing from Christ, who continually redeems me, and this situation, for His Glory.”

      Thank you for doing what you do Lauren. And also thank you for not being afraid of intimidation when using our Lord’s name publicly. It is for His glory that I too try to help the helpless. After all, we are ambassadors to Christ and should act accordingly. God bless you.

      • Francesco, I agree with you about the different routes these oils can travel. I have been through nursing school and worked with many doctors and nutritionists. I cook with EO’s, diffuse them and make my own products from deodorants, hair products, skin products, nail fungus and put a couple in capsules and take as supplements on and off. I had Chromic Pancreatitis since 1998 and after taking certain oils for less than a year, I have a clean bill of health. Of course, I have changed my diet as well. More on the alkaline side.

        However, MOSTLY, I wanted to agree with you both about boasting what God has lovingly created and given to us on the 3rd day of creation. I’m not ashamed and will admit my knowledge of him to anyone, even if it costs me my life. God would never plant anything that would hurt us. Now, man-made hybrids and similarities will.

        If anyone needs real info from a licensed doctor, they can visit Dr. Josh Axe. He’s on YouTube and I think is link is: Can’t remember for sure. 🙂

        Also, this link is VERY informative.

  15. Hey Lauren, I have been reading your blog for a while now and always enjoy your posts. You have been a big part of my journey to wellness! On reading this I am wondering whether you have obtained this information about ingesting essential oils since writing your buttermints recipe as it contains peppermint essential oil. Is it safe to ingest it this way?

  16. I market for an MLM company called Essante Organics. We recently (about 9 months ago) came out with a line of essential oils. This area is completely foreign to me and this article was very enlightening. Has anyone used our oils or would you be willing to investigate the quality of these oils for me. The company says they are the best but since I don’t have anything to compare to I am in the dark here. Any response would be greatly appreciated. This is not a sales pitch, I really would like some feedback. Thanks.


  17. enjoyed reading this and agree with you that there needs to be more research done on this topic. we recently got into EO’s and loving them, and can see that they are very powerful and use them wisely. thanks for sharing this info. great read and we learned a lot!

  18. I understand that there are two very strong sides to this argument, and after much research on my part I find it fascinating to read the research on using essential oils internally. We are really dealing with two completely different schools of thought here, and I can see how both sides are right. If we follow the traditional world of aromatherapy (which serves us well) I understand the “first do no harm” as the reason why we don’t use oils internally. I then went looking to research that proved that it did harm, but what I found was that essential oils were successful in discerning between killing the “bad” strains while leaving the “healthy” strains of bacteria that our bodies and our gut so desperately need. All I am saying is I understand where you are coming from and I highly respect it. I just wonder why you are not looking at some of the research that is showing the benefits of internal use too?
    by Dr. Jennifer Eddings
    by Dr. James Geiger (his background is in the classical study of aromatherapy in the UK)

    I will also disclose that many of these studies specifically reference doTERRA oils, but the website (LIBRARY tab) contains the published medical journal articles (filtered through pub med) but references only studies about essential oils (as opposed to weeding through the hundreds of thousands of studies on all things medicine).
    I love researching things such as this, so I truly hope that you see that I am coming from a good place of simply wanting to share information and not strike up a debate. It seems like you are also a well educated, research loving natural health source so I thought you might find these interesting. Thank you for presenting your information.

    • Thanks for sharing your research and those links. I’ll comb through them in more detail later today, but skimming through those studies linked I see so information that supports your theory that beneficial flora is not harmed. We lack the research to say that essential oils can discern good and bad bacteria. I think there is likely a time and place for ingesting the oils. My point is that the research is not there to back the statement “ingesting essential oils do not kill good bacteria” and we need to be careful hence the encouragement to work with a practitioner 🙂

    • The whole “schools of thought” argument is marketing hype. The “school” that says ingestion is okay (usually referred to as the “French” school) also requires that anyone who prescribes or administers the internal use of essential oils has a medical license or is a registered pharmacist. Sorry, but I don’t know any MLM sales reps who fall into either of those categories.

      Read more here:

      • This is a very interesting article and I enjoy both sides of the education. I will say – that I have both doctors AND registered phramacists that work with me in DoTERRA. Just because you dont’ know of any doesn’t mean there aren’t MANY out there. Love and Light!

  19. How about oregano oil capsules? I’m trying to get rid of candida and I heard about using oregano oil and a very potent probiotic. Do you think this will help with candida??

    • YES! there are tons of studies on this! I wont post links, but oregano is very affective for candida, because of the high phenol levels you should only use oregano internally for up to 10 days according to Dr. Hill, an essential oil research and expert. follow with probiotics. I have a presentation on this, but wont’ post without permission. the presentation was at the direction of a practioner

  20. When thinking it through, the idea that essential oils should not be eaten makes perfect sense to me. I don’t know a lot about essential oils, but when I think about the crunchy lifestyle, essential oils would seem like a disconnect to me. I don’t think it actually makes sense to use all natural home care products, try and do things that are environmentally friendly, but then add slightly commercialized, processed oils to our all natural organic foods. Not that essential oils are as bad as commercial foods, but I would be hard pressed to consider essential oils a “natural food.” To put it in other words, I think of it this way: I eat carrots, kale, grass fed beef, and essential oils. Which of these things is not like the other? lol.

  21. Almost all studies done on essential oils are internal use. The company I choose to use, relies on MD’s, DC’s and PHd’s for their recommendation for internal use, not aromatherpists. I also work with hundreds of functional medicine doctors who do clinical applied kinsielogy. For my body, I test very strong on oils for internal use, especially for detoxification and pathogens, This is essential for killing off hard core pathogens such as lyme, candiada and parasites. I have too struggled with autoimmunity. Internal use of essential oils saved me. has thousands of studies on internal use and so does I highly recommend you look into those two highly credible resources rather than an aromatherapist with little training on the medicinal benefits of essential oils. Additionally, citrus oils particularly help with glutathion production and brain energy, essential for detox, internally and externally on the skin for absorption.

  22. A quick correction to your post. Dr. Pappas, who runs the Facebook Page you mentioned, works for doTERRA. And Tisserand, who was “unbiased” for years, recently joined Team Plant Therapy.

    I would suggest you investigate the research being done on the effects of the internal use of Frankincense EO on cancer at Oklahoma University by Dr. HK Lin.

    As far as ingestion, it is really all about preference and comfort. Oils work great diluted topically or just aromatically, but for some, they just work better internally. As for myself and my family, bottoms up!

    • The goal of this article was not to dispute the value and benefit of using essential oils internally. It is a CAUTION against wantonly ingesting oils without PROPER SUPERVISION, and the general lack of knowledge of most of us consumers. There is much to point to the value of say, frankincense, in treating many issues, cancer included. But “self medication” can be quite dangerous.

      • “k” your comments:-
        “The goal of this article was not to dispute the value and benefit of using essential oils internally. It is a CAUTION against wantonly ingesting oils without PROPER SUPERVISION, and the general lack of knowledge of most of us consumers.” is spot on in my opinion.

        I have used essential oils for aromatherapy. I have never ingested them as I do not have enough knowledge (like many) and I do not know how to find, and investigate, a truly educated and skillful practitioner in my area.
        As the comments of Alyssa F illustrate, even someone who is recommended can change (although they would still have all their knowledge, just maybe not the same objectiveness).

        The ensuing discussions have confused me more, but I did enjoy the article, Lauren, and agree with your point, which I took to be:-
        That there has NOT been enough research done to say that ingesting essential oils DO NOT kill GOOD bacteria so we need to work with an educated practitioner. (My Phrasing)
        That’s it,
        I did not read into it, any other agenda. Thanks Lauren

  23. Two things…First, I would recommend doing a balanced piece about the two schools of Aromatherapy at odds here…the British and the French, instead of blasting away at a method that many have lived with for a long time.
    Second, if there is as much danger as you suggest with ingesting essential oils of high quality, wouldn’t there be a lot of sick people out there? My experience that with the people who do ingest, quite the opposite is true.

  24. I began broadening my inclusion of essential oils into my family’s lifestyle with my introduction to Young Living. While participating in that community I noticed that using essential oils had only replaced using pharmaceuticals as “medicine”; rather than making diet and lifestyle changes for long term wellness. We generally still approach our health with a “magic pill” mentality. I have come to feel that essential oils are only effective long term as a *support* to a *healthy diet and lifestyle*.

    A trained specialist is a tremendous resource to our research and implementation of healthy changes, but it would be a shame to abdicate to any specialist – holistic or otherwise – our “resourcefulness and initiative (Stephen Covey)” for our personal wellness. I mean, they can only tell you what they know, you still have to contribute what you know about your own body. How great would it be if we could each have a wellness relationship instead of a specialist/patient chain of command?

    I’ve been putting drops of lemon oil in my morning glass of water and it *seems* to have helped alleviate my mild acid reflux – but! I’ve also been making changes to my diet: my baby steps so far – no carbs, starches, or sweets for supper. However, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder a couple years ago, so gut health has become compelling for me (something like 70% of our immune system is housed in the GI tract?) and Lauren makes a good point about what essential oils may or may not be able to contribute in that area and she also confirmed my suspicions about “therapeutic grade” claims. As I proceed with making long term healthy diet and lifestyle changes, I hope to use articles like this to inform and inspire my journey, even if I don’t allow them to dictate my process. From the few articles I’ve read by Lauren, I *think* she would encourage all of us to be our own best wellness advocates in cooperation with the best information specialists can offer.

  25. An extract is a plant’s oil mixed with alcohol. If a person can’t take a drop of peppermint oil with a tablespoon of honey they they shouldn’t take it in an extract either. Placing a drop of peppermint EO in a recipe for frosting isn’t going to do anything different to your gut than using a drop of extract. I wouldn’t take a tablespoon of EO, and recipes using extracts usually recommend 1/4 tsp or less. That extract is composed of an EO and alcohol, and sometimes with water added. If people are ingesting an entire teaspoon of an EO then that is excessive. But to say they should never ingest an EO is extreme too. If it’s good grade then it’s generally recognized as safe by the FDA. But that doesn’t mean we should ingest a large quantity. I wouldn’t ingest a pound of basil leaves a day, so likewise I wouldn’t consumed more than a drop of basil EO a day either. An EO is like getting a concentrated dose of the plant. All things in moderation. We would be wise to not allow fear to be a motivator for anything. Caution, yes. Wisdom, yes. But extremism, no. As far as regulation goes, you have no more regulation for the extracts you buy than you do for an essential oil (no matter which company you get it from). Because the FDA doesn’t regulate any essential oil, even the ones put in your favorite extracts.

    • Melody and Kate, finally two educated people who are posting facts and not emotionally charged beliefs without scientific basis…I can only say thank you.

      Lisa you are absolutely right, everything in moderation, one or two drops of peppermint oil is actually wonderful and not to be seen as dangerous…I often use it is my desserts, chia puddings etc. and my family love it.

      I would also suggest you investigate the research being done on the effects of the internal use of Frankincense EO on cancer at Oklahoma University by Dr. HK Lin.

      Plus, the research done by Dr Dan Purser on hormone health. If you read Dr David Stewart, then you will understand why essential are safe and maybe will choose not to be one of an average 100,000 Americans who die each year from Pharmaceutical drugs and absolutely none die from ingesting 100% pure therapeutic essential oils.

      As far as ingestion, it is really all about preference and comfort. Oils diluted topically or just aromatically, but for me, where recommended for internal use, they just work better internally, I have healed my gut, have discontinued taking up to 5 pharmaceutical drugs per day to control high blood pressure, hypo thyroid, reflux and other gut issues.
      Plus I am a great believer in Kefir and fermented foods for healing gut issues, for more information
      Donna Schwenk has a great website.

      I believe self medication is less dangerous with thinking people than taking drugs from doctors who remain uneducated about the original medicine of essential oils and who promote drugs just because the drug company recommends them.


  26. I don’t believe ingesting EO’s is always bad, but I take a pretty conservative approach myself. However, I don’t find the AIA statement particularly compelling reasoning. There are LOTS of things practitioners don’t OFFICIALLY recommend because there are legal ramifications, especially with our Merck/Pfizer/etc.-driven FDA.

    • I echo that, Rachel. They are bound by the government. Even if they wanted to recommend something (because they know it to be true), they can’t if the FDA says they can’t.

  27. I find it refreshing that you think outside the box, Lauren. Oils seem to be the rage online right now and I’m sure bad advice is being slung around by untrained individuals with little caution.
    I use essential oils externally, with lemon oil being the only oil I’ve ever ingested. I was listening to an interview in which it was stated that oregano oil can kill harmful bacteria but not the beneficial bacteria when taken internally. First, I have used oregano oil “neat” on my skin and will NEVER do that again. It burns so bad. I can’t even imagine it would be okay to swallow in a capsule. Second, it would really be miraculous if oregano oil only harms the bad bacteria in the gut. I find that hard to “swallow.” (Ha,ha.) I am interested in looking for some studies to back this claim!

  28. Seriously, thank you for this article!! I am so disgusted with so many “sales reps” who say their oils are the only safe ones to ingest. Uck. Nope. Once they say that they lose ALL credibility. I probably spend $100+ per month on oils because I am a fanatic, but mostly for diffusing, and making homemade cleansers and personal care products. Sometimes I will dilute in carrier oils (my latest craze is organic castor oil as a carrier to frankincense to put on stretch marks — in less than two weeks I have seen a noticeable difference in my hips — thanks to stretch marks I got as an early teen when I went from being a beanpole to having hips, lol).

    Anyway, please feel free to join an Essential oil group I started on FB last month, to share recipes, tips, DIY etc about essential oils, but NO selling, and not allowed to push ingestion or unsafe use. We have some certified aromatherapists in the group that are super knowledgeable!!

    We will welcome any and all folks — those with knowledge and those who are just getting started… but no sales pitches 🙂

    Thanks again for this, I am going to post and share in my group.

  29. Timely post! I was approached a few days ago by an aquaintance about using lemon eo in water daily as a low carb version of lemonade if you add stevia. She really pushed the safety of them, and I never thought about the Essential oils affecting my gut bacteria. Thank you so much for your post!

  30. Hello Lauren
    Thanks for your article and I agree with many of the comments made above. It is a timely article and one that I have been considering blogging on for some time….but have yet to find the time 😉
    As a qualified naturopath & medical herbalist, I am also wary of the EO craze that has taken over the world in recent years. EO are powerful substances and should always be used internally with caution and professional knowledge. I think there are a handful of oils that have been well researched for various digestive and inflammatory disorders (oregano, boswellia and peppermint to name a few). The judicious use of these remedies can be a useful part of an overall holistic health strategy for some people.
    The essential oil has highly etheric qualities and this needs to be considered when prescribing for each individual. In our modern reductionist world view, even amongst the natural health community, there is very little understanding of the true nature of medicinal substance and its potential, beyond the physical chemical structure.
    In this debate, I also think it is worth considering how plant remedies have traditionally been used. Essential oils in such a concentrated form have never been used or were not available until modern processing techniques were invented. The traditional way of ingesting the essential oils was through tea or perhaps infused oils. Having well dried, quality herbal teas has always delivered essential oils in the safe container of the whole plant. This is a very important aspect of herbal medicine. When we use the whole plant as nature has given us we get (with exception of some highly powerful herbs) all the safe guards that we need. This is in contrast to modern pharmaceuticals where the active constituents of plants are isolated and then synthetic drugs are made from them….with all the inherent issues and side effects that comes with this.
    So essential oils should be respected and used with true understanding of the substance and its effects on all aspects of the human being, not just the physical.
    Thanks Karen 🙂

  31. I developed an auto immune disease called lichen sclerosis a few years ago. A very good friend of mine suggested I try taking Frankincense EO internally. I naively went ahead and took it. Six months later, I started having blood in my stools. Had a colonoscopy and was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis.

    I’m pretty sure this was coincidental but who knows? Do I ingest EOs anymore? No way.

    Just saying

  32. Thanks for your article, Lauren! You always have a way of opening up my mind to perspectives I hadn’t really thought about. I agree with what you’re saying about the importance of taking our delicate gut flora into consideration when it comes to ingesting EO. I do want to point out a couple of things I didn’t like about what you said (meant to be constructive criticism!)

    I don’t think that belittling EO companies because they are MLM is really relevant. Not that you really got into that, but just the “tone” kind of made it feel like being a part of an EO MlM is shamefu and that Vibrant Blue is far superior.. While it may be that MLMs are increasing the numbers of “unqualified” people giving advice on EO usage, I think there is definitely a really positive aspect–natural healthcare alternatives are reaching the masses! That’s a really awesome thing!

    I’d also like to point out that those who are with doTERRA (and I’m sure other companies have a similar resource) use a book called Modern Essentials which tells you how to use each oil and how to address almost any health concern you can think of. So while the individual consultant may not have a phD in biochemistry, as long as they know how to read, they are going off of the advice of those who ARE qualified and have done extensive research.

    I think you’re probably right that we should first look at aromatic and topical applications rather than jumping to internal usage, but I don’t think that we need to belittle the wonderful people who sell EOs who are just trying to help others with their health concerns. I would not trust the advice of 99% of the healthcare professionals in the world, so I’m not really convinced of the argument that the internal usage of EO needs to be monitored by a professional. I’m guessing that the professionals who would actually be capable of doing a good job with that process are very few and far between.

    As far as CPTG is concerned, I totally agree that it’s a marketing ploy, however, it isn’t entirely meaningless–the oils are third party tested to guarantee that they are totally pure and unadulterated. That counts for something.

    • I do appreciate your thoughtful comment and wanted to follow up with the updated information, for others who may be perusing the comments, that I stopped working with/recommeding VBO when their formulator left due to lack of integrity in the company. I’m currently looking for similar essential oils from a company that meets my standards.

  33. I am a big fan of essential oils but I wold never ever think of ingesting them. I didn’t even know that there are studies about the benefits of ingesting essentials oils. I know they have a lot of health benefits just by rubbing them on your body, I’ve been using essential oils to relieve me of muscle pains, shoulder pains, headache and even for just pain relaxation when I’m getting a massage. I appreciate your effort and concern for writing this post and inform us about the possible harm of ingesting oils, there might be other people out there that are already doing it but they don’t know the harm they’re causing their body. Essential oils are meant to help of manage ailment so we should use it the right to avoid any unwanted effects in our body. Thanks again for sharing this information.


    • As long as the lemon essential oil you are using is absolutely pure, you should not experience any bad side effects. If the oil you are using has been distilled using solvents, you should not ingest it. Call the company from which you bought the oil and ask them if it is safe to ingest.

  34. Great article! I love that you too dispute some of the hottest trends in health and wellness. Oils are everywhere right now! Although I do love that people are looking for more holistic approaches to their health, we also need to be aware of the popularity and having people do it for a quick and easy fix rather than a lasting one. Well written! I know how these articles can cause a big uproar but one that maybe needs to happen. I am a big promoter in my profession on listening to your body. Something we could all work on. Thanks for posting, another great reminder that our bodies know best!

  35. Currently, there are no published standards in the essential oils industry, so anyone can say pretty much anything about any oils. There are no guarantees of purity except those given by the manufacturer. However, there is work being done behind the scenes to establish standards, so when that happens the companies who sell adulterated oils for profit will either have to clean up their act or go out of business. Until then, I will make my own decisions based on research and prayer. I believe God has provided everything we need on this earth to live an abundant life, and essential oils are part of that provision. As an aside, I do ingest certain oils and have seen remarkable positive results. That being said, there are some oils that you should NOT ingest, and the company where I get my oils is very clear about which ones they are.

  36. From an article written by Dr. Joan Barice (A Stanford and Harvard trained medical doctor, board certified in internal, and preventative and addiction medicine, Dr. Joan has special expertise in complementary medicine, lifestyle medicine, nutrition, clinical aromatherapy and pain management.)
    “If I want the oils to go to my intestine, swallowing it in a capsule would be best. As a matter of fact, peppermint oil in enteric coated capsules has been studied, approved, and is prescribed by doctors to treat irritable bowel symptoms even in young children effectively and safely without side effects.”
    Read the full article here. This may help clear up some common misconceptions about the internal use of essentials oils and as an education tool to help offset some of your incorrect information:

  37. “An individual selling essential oils in a multi-level marketing scheme does better research on the safety of the oils than a licensed aromatherapist not affiliated with an essential oil company. Said no one ever.”

    Yes. This. Exactly. You have a new reader!

  38. I sell essential oils from one of the MLM companies you mentioned. Here is what I posted on my personal Facebook page just a minute ago:

    “I use (and sell) essential oils. I LOVE them, and I’ve had very good results with them. But I’ve decided to stop taking them orally. I’m still happily using them topically and aromatically, though! I have confidence in the quality of the oils that I use, and my decision has nothing to do with quality issues.

    For those who’ve gotten oils from me, I felt I should let you know that I’m now recommending topical and aromatic use only. After researching this for yourself, you might decide to take them internally. Please do your own research, referencing impartial, third-party sources — just as you would with any health product or pharmaceutical.

    Here is just one article that talks about some of the reasons why I’ve made this decision. It’s one of a dozen or so that I’ve read on this topic, and I think this writer does a good job of articulating my thinking on this matter. Although there are different schools of thought on internal use (the French school vs the British school), I choose to take the more conservative approach until more impartial studies can be done, and until these questions in my mind can be answered to my satisfaction.”

    Thank you for your blogpost, Lauren. It was that last little push I needed to “go public” with my previously unspoken concerns.

  39. This was a very interesting article, and I enjoyed the points that you made. My question is, though, what can be done when diet and nutrition is not enough to heal severe problems. When you have issues like autism, PANDAS, Lyme disease … sometimes diet is not enough by itself. And taking antibiotics or antipsychotic drugs does a LOT more harm long term, in my opinion, than using essential oils. I understand that essential oils are very powerful, and you were advocating for safe use, but often times doctors prescribe medications without a whole lot of thought into it just as easily as someone might recommend an oil. My family has been harmed much more by consulting mainstream medicine than by anything we have done that is considered more natural.
    That being said, though, I appreciate your drawing attention to this issue so that people can be aware and use essential oils with caution, as they should any treatment.

  40. I was gunshy about ingesting EOs at first. I still am. But someone above mentioned that your skin is the largest organ in your body. Your digestive system has roadblocks to assist in protecting your body against toxins. Your skin does not. So logic would support not using them topically either. Am I right? Inhaling EOs would also be off the table since your lungs tend to be the quickest way to get drugs and other substances into your bloodstream apart from IVs. So…. I guess I’m confused as to the validity of any of these statements. I’m not here to start an argument or prove anybody wrong. I am curious. I am not educated in biochemistry nor am I a physician. I am a concerned mom with a child who is immunosuppressed (Down syndrome) and who just had open heart surgery. I have a daughter with a weak immune system who catches a cold when someone sneezes 50 feet away. Since I have started using EOs topically and aromatically my children have not been sick. My son has been exposed to family that have severe illnesses and has not been sick ONCE. My next door neighbor has a form of bowel disease caused by C Diff that only a handful of people in the world have, and ingesting EOs was a last resort for her. They WORK. It’s incredible.
    So do your research. Do what you feel is best while consulting with a physician. Be smart and look around.

    Here is the link to the FDAs list of oils that are GRAS, or generally regarded as safe for human consumption.

  41. I agree with Jess above, and as a veterinarian, I do have a medical background, and I would argue my education in physiology, biochemistry, and chemistry surpasses any aromatherapist. No one has yet been able to explain to me how topical use is ok if ingestion isn’t. AROMAtherapy is only inhaled, by definition. If you want to argue only inhale EOs vs. topical/ingestion, that I might be able to see, although if they don’t get into your body, they wouldn’t work, so even that raises questions. As others have said, caution is prudent, extremism on either side isn’t.

    We’re all switching to natural cleaning products. Why? Because we know inhaling the fumes or touching or eating off of surfaces that have been cleaned with chemicals gets those chemicals into our bodies, and it’s making us sick. We don’t have to ingest cleaning supplies for that to happen. Essential oils behave the same as any other chemical compound. Either they’re toxic and we should avoid them because they will get into our blood streams and affect our health negatively, or they aren’t, in which case, a drop topically is the same as a drop orally for those oils that can be ingested as far as I can tell and no one has yet to be able to show fault in my logic on that one.

  42. I agree too with the views stated by Jess and Jessica.
    Having an understanding of oils is necessary if taking them internally.
    From my own experience, internally is my primary way of using them, followed my topical and lastly aromatically. I have never experienced any kind of adverse reaction or side-effect from taking EOs internally.

  43. Thanks for the article. Which essential oil company is one you would recommend? Also, in the buttermint recipe, it says you can use peppermint essential oil. So is that only safe if you use therapeutic grade like you said?


  44. Young living oils are the only truly pure oils. The seeds the land and the processing are all done by the young living company. Nothing is contracted out to other companies. The FDA
    Is by no means unbiased. They are paid and influenced by lobbies who are hired by drug companies. I ingest them defuse them and use them topically. They have done nothing but helped me and my family. I can’t say the same for prescription drugs i have taken.

  45. Hi Lauren,
    I have just discovered your website (well done, its very good), I have put together all the ingredients for the buttermints, but I see that it includes, Peppermint essential oils, here in the UK it says on the bottle not to ingest, so is it Peppermint Essence I should use instead,
    Kind Regards
    Nick Cosgrave

  46. I agree with Jess and Jessica above. Your argument seems fundamentally flawed in that anything toxic to the body of flora in the body should not be used at all. Topical and aromatic application have a systemic affect on the body just as does internal use. Many are familiar with pharmaceuticals that are administered topically through a patch or cream and we don’t question that those are quickly absorbed into the body through the skin and essential oils function just the same. It seems that logic would dictate that you either use essential oils in all 3 ways or not at all but to say that 1 way is more effective or harmful defies all logic if you take just a moment to really ponder it. Our skin is not so much a barrier as a sponge with regards to the stuff we apply to it.
    And in case you’re wondering, I’m a huge advocate of using oils in all 3 ways. I think the discussion of safety should be more on a dosing and frequency level rather than on how to apply them. They are truly powerful and a little goes a long way.
    Also, just because the FDA doesn’t monitor something doesn’t mean that the individual companies aren’t putting out pure oils. It is up to us to research what quality standards a company has in the oils they offer. Line you stated, not all oils are of the same quality so a but of individual research is merited here.

  47. Hey Lauren, Your blog is very informative. I was totally unaware about such facts and I totally agree with your point of view that there is the need to have more research on the topic. Thanks for sharing this info with us.

  48. I add 1-2 drops of lemon EO to my morning glass of water. Is this dangerous? I read that it can damage mucous membranes and could cause cancer over time (???). This seems silly, but I’d like an expert’s opinion. 🙂

    • Do you put lemon rind into your desserts? That’s where the pure unadulterated lemon essential oil comes from. If you can trust your brand I would not call it dangerous to ingest 1-2 drops daily. I love lemon the sunshine oil!

    • Do you put lemon rind into your desserts? That’s where the pure unadulterated lemon essential oil comes from. If you can trust your brand I would not call it dangerous to ingest 1-2 drops daily. I love lemon, the sunshine oil!

  49. If they are so dangerous why isn’t Gary Young and his wife, not to mention countless others, dead or dying of some disease caused by ingestion of essential oils? They have been using them internally for decades and have only become healthier. Where are all the deaths and diseased people? I agree one needs to do research and study up on the subject, learn about dosages and applications, but essential oils work internally.

  50. Enjoyed the article. I must say, I ingest oils on occasion. I do believe that the examples stated in the begining of the article are somewhat misleading.

    My husband uses the lemon, Lavander, peppermint combination for allergies daily, as recomended by our physician. And have often been verbally attacked by those who would have you believe we arbitrarily ingest without proper education.

    Im afraid there is an assumption made that anyone who uses certain brands is not only uneducated but a danger to others. Since there is no possible way to know the persons who are recommending the opening examples. There is also no possible way to know what education they have, or who may have recommended ingestion.

    To assume the two companies obviously referred to in this article are not concerned with safety is in my opinion very bold. To say there is never occasion to ingest oils is as misleading as the opening examples

  51. I am relatively new to the MLM business with essential oils. This article gives me a lot to think about. I’m interested in receiving training to understand EOs and how they interact with the body, with a goal of becoming a naturopath. Do you have any suggestions on training sites? Thank you.

  52. I am totally new to EO’s, but am willing to try them now. I am a cancer patient with much bone pain. I have been taking too much pain relievers and am now concerned how this affects my liver. I brought the idea of ingested EO’s to my doctor’s attention. He has given me the go ahead to try it. I have found this blog and the various comments very helpful.

    • You have cancer? How early did you catch it? What kind were you diagnosed with?

      Please please do your research on Roy Simpson Oil! That is the miracle you are looking for! I’m sure of it! It is the most affective cure out there, but hardly anyone knows because Big Pharma has tried multiple times to shut him down. The success rates are amazing! However I understand most people’s hesitancy so if you don’t want to go that route try the following (and honestly try these even if you do the Roy Simpson Oil, to better your chances):

      *Dandelion Root – dandelion root tea treats cysts, tumors, and cancer
      *Sweet Wormwood – Chinese Herb Kills 98% of Breast Cancer in Just 16 Hours
      *Guanabana Fruit – miraculous natural cancer cell killer 10,000 times stronger than Chemo, proven cancer remedy for cancers of all types

      Also make concoctions of: Garlic, Ginger Root, Honey, Turmeric (inhibits the growth of cancer cells, and shrinks tumors) like this:
      or this:

      I lost my Grandma years ago not to the cancer but the chemo they promised would save her, and that has lit one heck of a fire in me. So now my goal is to educate as many people as I can to try to prevent any other unnecessary deaths because of Big Pharma’s Greed. Think about it, if you get better you have no reason to return and spend more of your hard earned money on them. Pills treat the symptom, never cure the cause. It’s just not profittable enough for them to care and do the right thing.

      I really hope this information helps, and that you are given a long, happy, healthy life full of love and laughter. I’m not at all religious (pretty anti most times) but when I heard your story I felt compelled to pray for you. So I hope my one little voice helps in the sea of many. 🙂

    • Oh and as far as pain there are several essential oils I could recommend (ask people on here for dosages and methods) and also ask them if I’m correct because I’m no expert, in fact I’m completely new to all this but this is what I saw most when researching pain relief:
      sweet marjoram
      st john’s wort

      I just started researching natural ways to make pain go away for my TMJ, scoliosis, my bone bruise on my thumb, and my husband’s carpal tunnel and spinal arthritis. And the ones above came up the most when researching pain and inflammation. Hope this helps. 🙂

  53. I completely agree with you – Essential Oils may not be safe to ingest without having strict regulations and testing. But then again, there are many things (like herbal remedies) marketed as food which may not be safe to eat. I definitely want to know where things come from before I put them into my body!

    Have you read these studies?

    And here’s a very interesting blog –

  54. Hi Lauren,
    Are you familiar with Martin Watt? Although his style is abrupt, opinionated, highly eccentric, and he disparages Gary Young, doTERRA, etc., he also seems to have conducted a VAST amount of research and appears dedicated to transparency and objective research regarding the safety and appropriate use of EOs.
    His “Useful Links” page leads to many informative websites. And his opinions can be very entertaining, if you don’t take that portion of it too seriously ; )

  55. I have a son who was very ill with a rare nervous system issue and trained professionals made him WORSE. Medications made him WORSE. It wasn’t until I used alternative therapies that he began to heal. Including essential oils. I see commercials of two different prescription meds that were recommended for him in his life and they are now in the midst of lawsuits for damages they caused. I am a massage therapy student and I am in network with certified aromatherapists and they often use highly concentrated oils that are seem to me to be even more potent than the MLM brand I use. They talk about dangers and burns and “only a professional”. I don’t care to dabble in those.
    After dealing with multiple health issues in my family and detrimental effects of prescriptions and ineffectiveness of over the counter drugs, I am sticking with what has healed my family over and over. I also am not crazy about the ingestion use, so I don’t really do it, but I think we should be careful to send the fear factor out there about essential oils because we don’t want regulators to come in and take away an avenue for us to have an alternative in our healthcare nor scare someone out of using them and finding healing.

  56. I have to chime in on this one…I nearly lost my daughter to an antibiotic resistant bacterial infection in her gut. She had grown up on antibiotics due to urinary reflux and frequent respiratory illnesses that would cause pneumonia. This poor girl’s gut was a mess because we had destroyed her flora. She had also developed bleeding ulcers. After two heavy rounds of antibiotics, the doctors were at a loss. The antibiotics were making her worse. Thank the heavens above for being introduced to essential oils! We used the oils both topically and internally with amazing results! I can assure that my daughter would have taken a drastic turn for the worse if the EO’s were destroying more flora like the antibiotics had been doing. It might not be proof enough for you, but it sure was for me! We have been safely ingesting EO’s for the past 6 years on a daily basis with ZERO issues. The gentleman who introduced me to oils has been using them internally on a daily basis for over 25 years…no problems. 🙂

  57. I think EO’s should be used in the same school of thought as “everything in moderation”. Antibiotics, while beneficial in treating many illnesses is taken for a time and then stopped. I think the same method of ingesting EO’s should be considered. I’ve got several friends who are a part of the multi-level marketed companies, yes they take the EO’s internally and rave about the results that they have had from doing so. (FYI, Just ordered my first kit of lemon, lavender and peppermint so I have not used the oils as of yet.) Until someone actually shows proof of why I shouldn’t ingest EO’s, I will regard them as GRAS. When I say proof, it’s from someone who demonstrated moderation and caution when using EO’s. Not the type of person that drinks 3 2-liters of coke a day and then wonders why they have diabetes, headaches and bad teeth. I don’t need more scare tactic propaganda in my life, there is enough of it on T.V.

  58. I suggest you investigate the French School of Aromatherapy, also called Aromatology. Ingesting EO is not dangerous if done the right way, the problem is that most brands don’t offer EO that are 100% safe to ingest.
    Here in Europe, aromatology is very popular, especially in Spain and France (French doctors use this form of application in hospitals).
    I suggest you check out the brand called: pranarom, they even have capsules with a safe dosis of EO, they will not irritate your throat or digestive track. Really amazing natural cures!
    I used to think what you have just said in your article, and I agree to some extent-safety first, however, ingesting EO is not something completly verboten. I use EO internally. I did training in aromatology as well. I really recommend it to everyone.
    PS- where do you live? are you in the US? I have noticed that Americans don’t know this mode of application.
    Really- google- scientific aromatherapy and “pranarom”.
    Hope that helped:)

  59. Good article that stimulates a good back and forth….

    The best unanswered question thus far that has been posed by a few different posters, including one with an MD behind her name, is WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN INGESTING A DROP OF OIL VS RUBBING A DROP TOPICALLY AND OR INHALING FROM A DIFFUSER? In fact ingesting the oil seems that it could possibly reduce its potency vs topical administration given the acids, saliva, and other “check points” it has to get through internally.

    Could someone smarter than me address that?

    Again, great read and good back forth. Thanks.

  60. I am a Aromatherapist and I do use oils everyday and I use them Topical, Internal and Aromatic. I have over 10 books and I know what everyone is used for and what you should not use . I am also a Doterra advocate . I am getting ready to go back to school for three more years. I also use it on my Horses and Dogs.

    • I have read that using Frankincense oil with dogs with cancer can benefit them and sometimes put the tumors in remission. Our 20 pound dog has a mast cell tumor on his muzzle. It was removed three months ago, but is now coming back. I am applying one drop of oil mixed with coconut oil on the insides of his ears. Can this be ingested also? It is therapeutic grade. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

  61. As a fellow NTP currently holding a certification from the Nutritional Therapy Association, in addition to a Master Degree in Public Health and over 30 yrs experience in the health care field, I find this article exceedingly alarmist in regards to essential oils. I have used EOs myself and with my family, friends, and clients to fantastic success, and yes I ONLY use Young Living therapeutic-grade essential oils. Why? Because the production of the EOs from seed to seal matters THAT much! I invite you to conduct your own personal research (by taking them yourself) and having a personal experience from which to speak from, rather than relying on hyperbole and unnecessarily conservative aromatherapy schools of thought as a means to dissuade folks away from these miraculous healing marvels! Also, a quick search of the published essential oil research available on PubMed will quickly bear proof of my statement. Thanks for considering … the world needs to use more essential oils, not fewer and not in fear. — Ig Vigé

  62. I think that this article makes some valid points I ingest only one brand of oils and it has helped me immensely i don’t ingest oils every single day. But I do ingest oils when necessary

  63. Please look at all the chemicals in the food supply. These chemicals are killing many processes in the body. We have to ingest organic essential oils to be be able to restore our body, including repairing DNA damaged. Otherwise we will have cancer. The government knows what it is doing.. The chemicals have inhibited our enzymes we are supposed to get from the food. The plants can’t absorb the nutrients from the soil. We eat poison. The government has many researchers finding what the can do since they kill our bacteria. We get inflamed bodies. People can’t digest their medicines; therefore, the medicines or chemicals are stored in our fat. Look around especially at the poor.
    The government is now going to add essential oils to medicine to trick our body into taking poison. Watch what happens in a few years. Its such a shame what the american government does to its sheep.
    Organic essential oils are all we really have.
    They make people so sick so nobody stands up and says no more because people don’t have energy. There is a famine in the United States.

  64. I’m sorry, what are your credentials exactly? I’m a physician and have done copious amounts of research on ingesting therapeutic-grade essential oils, which are perfectly safe (and very beneficial) when taken in the proper amounts and with the proper knowledge and safety. The harmful thing about personal blogs, is that anyone can write an opinion piece, without proper education or research on the subject at hand, and perpetuate false information all throughout the Internet. I would advise everyone to do their own research (PubMed and other scientific articles and journals, not Internet searches and blogs) in order to determine how they would be able to benefit from essential oils. I have found Young Living to be the highest quality essential oils on the market, after purposely trying several different brands for efficacy. No, I do not sell Young Living oils. However, practicing in the medical field for over 20 years and incorporating naturopathic alternatives with modern medicine, when necessary, gives me great confidence to refer my patients to essential oils, even ingestion of the proper, edible ones.

    • I recently had to go off the doTERRA cleanse for the severe adverse effects! I was bleeding & had a tremendous amount of blood clots. The cramping felt like labor pains & both went on for 36 hours. The oil rep told me it was ok my body was dumping toxins. I have never had a reaction to anything like I did after being on it for 5 days. Out of concern for my well being I went off.

  65. Just reading all the replies. I just wanted to add I along with the rest of my family including 3 children 10, 8 and 6 yrs were diagnosed with lyme disease in April. I was advised to take antibiotics by 3 of the only doctors in sydney Australia. I did loads of research, skyped a naturapath in the US. I did a detox using herbs, took US herbal lyme drops. All helped a little. I started Essential oils ( a US brand on recommendation from my US Naturapath who had patients who were making significant progress with oils over and above any other treatment protocol). Again I researched them. All I will say is in the last two months since starting the oils I finally feel like I have turned a corner. When I’m on them I feel healthy again. I do 10 days on and 10 days off. At the end of the 10 days off, my symptoms return, but it seems that after each time, my symptoms on returning are becoming less. I take them internally and I use them topically. At the end of the day whatever the method, it penetrates the body and its cells the same way. I love them. Everyone has their own opinion but I wanted a natural approach for my children and I believe I have found it..

    • Elissa, my sister-in-law has been suffering from Lyme’s Disease for several years now. Can you tell me what research you found and what EOs you use to treat it?

      I just started using EOs this summer, including using NOW’s Orange or Lemon in my water. I also have started using doTERRA’s OnGuard and Breathe that were given to me by a good friend who has been using them. She told me about EOs because a year ago this coming Monday I was hospitalized with H1N1 and bilateral pneumonia. While intibated in the ICU, I was diagnosed with Hairy Cell Leukemia. My lungs were 90% infected and my WBC count was .8. After receiving Rituxan chemotherapy (I was too sick for the traditionally recommended chemo), I am happy to say I am in remission.

      I believe in moderation. My husband and I now use EOs just about every day. I am acutely aware of how foods and drinks make me feel. I feel great when I eat well. The only way I know how to describe how I feel when I add Orange or Lemon EO to my water is that my body feels clean and healthy. My sister’s massage therapist has researched EOs and recommended not taking EOs internally. But that goes against what my body is telling me, and as mentioned several times above, if your body absorbs EOs through the skin and air, how is that any safer than internally if there is reason for concern over safety?

      Lastly, does anyone know anything about the quality of the NOW brand? I have only purchased the ones that are cold pressed and say 100% pure, and organic when available. I would appreciate any input.

      • I have a friend who manages a local natural food/health store who i refer to daily when i recommend supplements, probiotics, etc. to my patients. She is very researched and knowledgable about the products that she sells, and when i inquired about the difference in quality of essential oils, she stated that she wouldn’t use the NOW brand. i mentioned that i had tried both young living and doterra and she agreed that they both were of the highest quality. there was also an organic brand in her store that she recommended, but i didn’t get the name. i use both young living and doterra on myself and my 9 year old son and i don’t sell either brand.

      • Now makes quality EO’s, I have several of their oils and think they are excellent. It is a family owned company, and some of the oils are certified organic, and the oils from edible plants are basically food grade, even though they aren’t advertised as that. They can offer lower prices than some others because they are a larger company and can purchase in larger quantities, although there are other quality companies with similar prices like Eden Garden. Emma has some good reviews of Now and some of the other top brands here:

  66. I’ve read through many of the comments, as well as your article. I do agree that essential oils should be handled carefully, very carefully, and anyone using them should have several books that details the benefits as well as the dangers. You keep mentioning about only using oils “under the guidance of a certified aromatherapist, herbalist or other practitioner who has vast experience with essential oils.” Where do these people exist? And where do they actually gain accurate knowledge of the oils, from whom is the curriculum based on, and what scientific studies have been done? (I do know there have many done over the years, but I feel it’s mainly in order to find whatever compound in the oil may produce the benefit, in order for them to most most likely synthesize it, patent it,and charge an arm & leg for it! You can look up studies being done on frankincense for cancer, for one, to verify that). From my experience, nearly everyone has a different opinion on this matter based on whatever they’ve read (whether they’ve attended some type of school/training or are researching on their own). From what I gather from your article, you seem to imply that it’s okay to apply it to your skin or diffuse it, but not to eat it. I would no more diffuse something that is harmful to eat, than I would apply it to my skin. If you can’t eat it, then I don’t recommend you put it on your skin or sniff it either any more than I would apply car oil to my skin or spray store-bought aerosols in my house in an attempt to kill germs. We all know both of those are dangerous to our health. I feel that your article begs (or at the very least) invites the pharmaceutical companies to make a big push to get control over essential oils and/or for the FDA to begin labeling them all as medicines, and of course, we are all too stupid to take care of our own health!. With all the harm that has already been done by the medical community and the control that is being taken away from us as individuals, I would have appreciated more substantial advice and/or links on how to use the oils more safely. Perhaps you don’t remember years ago when codex was almost a household word with all the changes they were attempting to make over supplements and some food substances. The one I remember clearly was that they wanted garlic (and I think baking soda) to be unavailable to consumers, and I’m not sure I remember clearly on this, but I believe they wanted to make it illegal for us to even grow it in our own gardens (garlic, not referring to ‘growing’ baking soda!). No, that has not officially happened, but it wouldn’t be unusual for them to go back to keeping things quiet rather than letting things leak out that might affect the public – kinda like rarely mentioning obamacare lately and no more mention of ebola on our local news channels (not to imply that the information given there was either accurate or helpful). I feel that we each as individuals owe it to ourselves to do our homework on essential oils diligently and use the oils sparingly and carefully, but, as I said above, you seem to be inviting trouble that could end up with no one being able to have access to these oils except by RX. And if that happens, you can be sure that they’ll be as toxic and unsupervised as the medications already handed out by the pharmaceutical companies and their “distributors” — licensed MDs. End of my opinion

    • What she said ^^ this article saddens me, articles like this and others who have been brainwashed by the Robert Tisserand clan make be very sad…this is just asking for the FDA to come in and take over…I think more research is needed here…

      What I also don’t understand is the British model says “do not ingest” and yet no one seems to mention or talk about the fact that essential oils and herbal extracts are in many processed food products, and yet you don’t see anyone screaming about telling people to not ingest that Peppermint candy that has essential oils from who knows where?

      Also- if you can’t eat it, why would you put it on your body! The skin is your largest organ, whatever we put on our body goes straight into the blood stream with no barrier or protection. When you ingest something your body has a protection mechanism of your stomach/gut/acid and the whole system works together to decide what to do with what has been put into the body…

      You need to read this article & more research should be done before any claims are made and any future fear mongering in regards to EO’s! I would much rather see people using essential oils over pharm. drugs any day! Articles like this scare people out of using something so powerful and so wonderful and this makes me very sad!

      Read here and decide if your article is sound or not:

      • Yay the first person to mention that essential oils can be in processed foods! If you have ever eaten a processed food in your life (and seriously unless you’ve lived in a remote tribe your entire life you would have at some stage eaten a processed food) then it is highly likely you will have at some point ingested an essential oil. There are companies out there that produce not only chemicals but essential oils to flavour our food, for instance Robertet: and other companies that distribute flavour ingredients (yes that includes essential oils) to manufacturers of food, such as Cosmark!essential-ols/c4vu. When you see the word flavour on packaging it can be from an essential oil, natural isolate, nature identical chemical or a completely new fabricated chemical not seen in nature. The people who design these flavours are called flavorists. The good scents company is an online resource that lists all chemicals, including essential oils, used within the fragrance and flavour industry. From this site you can find whether an essential oil can be utilised in food and the safe upper limits for its inclusion (in parts per million).

        So if you’ve ever had flavoured teas, ice cream, candy, chewing gum, eucalyptus lollies (to name a few), you have most likely ingested essential oils. Some chefs also utilise essential oils for flavouring as do some chocolate makers these days. There is also a book by a chef and perfumer on utilising essential oils in cooking called “Aroma: The magic of essential oils in food and fragrance”.

        If you do choose to ingest essential oils in your personal life, then obviously care needs to be taken because they are potent, a drop is usually sufficient to flavour an entire dish and will not harm you – so long as it is one of the oils listed on the FDA site as GRAS, and is a 100% pure essential oil from a reputable supplier.

  67. It really bothers me when people try and disprove Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade oils. CPTG means the company has gone through 3rd party testing and the product is always going to be pure. They go above and beyond organic and only use the very best sources from all around the world. They don’t own their own farms to make a higher profit like other companies. They go where plants are indigenous and produce the best product. They will actually choose to not produce an oil if they can’t make it perfect. There are even Supplement Facts on the bottle just like all the food you eat. How can this be a bad thing? Why aren’t other companies doing it if they think their oil is just as good? Because they are in it for profit and not quality. I drink Lemon in my water everyday. Yes, the oil floats, but I taste it all the way to the bottom. It’s a good thing that oil doesn’t mix with water. Our body is made up of fat. That’s why essential oils work better than pharmaceuticals. They are water based and can’t be absorbed in our body. Oils and fat mix perfectly and it gets into the cells and kills the bacteria. I take Lifelong Vitality everyday and my Crohn’s Disease, (along with proper eating habits) has improved tremendously. My energy is better than ever. I recommend it highly for not only anyone with digestive issues, but there’s a whole list of ailments that it has been proven to help. As stated before, testimonials are what you need to listen to. Yes, some oils are strong. That just means they need to be diluted. Oregano being one of them. One drop of Peppermint oil is like 28 cups of tea. You will never find bark or leaves or any other part of the plant in CPTG oils. They are pure oil. Only the “essential” part of the plant that is used to fight bacteria is needed. Isn’t the power of the oil a good thing? You can always dilute it with coconut or olive oil. Why pay for and ingest parts of the plant that are not helpful to you? We all know when you put something on your skin that it will be absorbed into your system. That’s why all these lotions with pretty smelling chemicals are terrible for us. It all gets in our body anyway. I highly doubt there is much difference ingesting peppermint instead of putting it on your skin. It’s just that it works better and quicker if you need the oil internally for a specific issue. I guess haters are going to hate. I personally think it’s jealousy, but just my opinion.

  68. Hello Lauren, thanks for sharing such wonderful information regarding essential oils. Essential oil is very helpful in fighting with many health issues. Also, as you said ingesting the essential oil is safe for human body if it is taken in right amount.

  69. I’ve been ingesting essential oils for a number of years myself and giving them to my husband, teenage and college-age children. In an effort to take charge of our personal health, avoid dangerous prescription medications, and utilize natural remedies to support our immune systems, we have all benefited from essential oils. They are supportive–not a cure-all. Diet, exercise, and lifestyle are strong contributors to health–we eat whole foods, use herbs from the garden, and essential oils to support. Over the years we have used our oils, along with other natural remedies, to fight colds and flu, sinus infections and bronchitis, headaches, urinary tract infections, skin issues, hormone imbalances, muscle pain or injury, focus and mood issues, and many other concerns. Every member of my family has benefited from essential oils in a variety of way, including careful internal consumption. We have only experience positive benefits as we carefully do research and use the oils with respect. None of us have needed a Rx for years.

    Anyone who consumes prescription medications, prepared and process foods, snacks, alcohol, and over the counter beauty products really has nothing to say about people who use 100% natural oils internally to support good health. In fact, personal experience and excellent health and immunity are my personal testimony of not only essential oils, but natural living. If you don’t want to ingest oils, then don’t! But please stop the madness of telling millions of people who do that they are crazy. It’s simply not true. You will never change the minds of individuals who carefully include oils into their healthy lifestyle by using them aromatically, internally, and topically. Some medical doctors are even recommending oregano oil as an alternative to antibiotics and I never travel without it.

    If you are thinking about this issue–talk to real people in your life that have used oils with success. Do research on each oil and make your own decision! Just like you do with how much coffee you’ll drink, whether you choose to consume grains and dairy, and if you’ll exercise. It;s easy for bloggers to say that they recommend this or that, or that they’d never do this or that–but it;s your life. You’ll find plenty of support for any side of this issue–but only you can decide what’s right for you and your family. And if you have never taken essential oils internally, do your research and give it a try and see if you see a benefit! We don’t have to live our lives in fear–the world is filled with amazing blessings that support our health and essential oils is just one of those many blessings…but remember the world “supportive” and determine to make a healthy natural lifestyle your priority.

    • Doterra’s DDR Prime burned my esophagus and now I have to be on the highest amount of prescription acid reducers and need surgery to repair where my esophagus won’t close properly. People need to know how dangerous the oils can be if ingested. I’ve been through hell this past year (28 years old). My quality of life has diminished greatly by my limited diet and not even being able to bend over after eating and so many other things because of the severe acid reflux I now have caused by the oils. Sales reps are not experts.

  70. Doterra’s DDR Prime burned my esophagus and now I have to be on the highest amount of prescription acid reducers and need surgery to repair where my esophagus won’t close properly. People need to know how dangerous the oils can be if ingested. I’ve been through hell this past year (28 years old). My quality of life has diminished greatly by my limited diet and not even being able to bend over after eating and so many other things because of the severe acid reflux I now have caused by the oils. Sales reps are not experts.

  71. When you are talking about ingesting EO’s. Are you talking about any EO whether it’s marked as food safe or not, solvent extracted etc.? or are you only talking about the food safe EO’s?
    Some companies do label the EO’s that are safe to take internally. I have several oils that are marked as food safe (FCC)

  72. You know, I really want to believe in the efficacy of taking oils internally, did my research, and tried multiple sources (including the big ones) that “guarantee” they are therapeutic grade but have found them all to be off-putting. One thing they all had in common (except peppermint) for me, is that they all really wiped out my taste buds for a while. That can’t be good. Even diluted, they “burned” my taste buds; and it took days for my mucous membranes to feel normal again as well. Cinnamon, clove, oregano, etc… For awhile I was taking a drop or two of lemon EO in water or juice but found my lips began to get oversensitive in the sun (because duh, it’s photosensitive). All of the oils I took had certificates of purity (except DoTerra and Young Living ironically, who just make strong promises they are) but I wasn’t happy with the trade-off. Taking them internally is scary to me (so are antibiotics) because if they mess with my mucous membranes, who knows what they’d do to the flora in my gut!

  73. i’m pretty new to essential oil usage. last night i made a homade lavender lemonade (recipe i found on the internet), which required 2 drops of essential lavender oil (in a 3 litre container).. would that be okay?

  74. I was very pleased to uncover this great site. I need to to thank you for ones time due to this wonderful read!! I definitely really liked every little bit of it and i also have you bookmarked to check out new things on your blog.

  75. I want to suggest editing a version of this article that is pared down to just your recommendation without any of the details… I shared it with a friend who is ingesting EOs… Her takeaway? Peppermint is ok and she’s going to try the grapefruit… I don’t think she read past the quotes at the beginning.

  76. Love the article! It’s kind of crazy how some people can be really indignant about people saying to not use them internally, because it’s a matter of choice. I see peppermint being used a lot in the comments, and everyone saying they trust their bodies and nature. Personally, I believe peppermint tea does wonders for a body, mine included, as well as a digestive oil blend diluted with carrier oil as not to burn the skin, massaged on my abdominal area. I trust my body, but not everything from nature is good! If you admire daisies would you go out and pick Poison Ivy because “its a plant too, it’s from nature”? Essential oils are a touchy subject, but only because of certain companies giving false information to “set themselves apart”. It’s really sad and really separates people on a field of healing, which we should be working as a team, promoting truth, not personal profit. Just let each have their own and leave it at that, and some people forget. That’s just my two cents.

    Blessings <3

  77. Um… you do realize that every time you rub essential oils on your body you are ingesting them – just not through your mouth?

    I understand where you are coming from with the rampant unethical practices in America to get more profit at the cost of quality and no policing of companies, but really we are our own watch dogs. When it comes to our heath we can’t afford to throw out the baby with the bathwater.

    Use essential oils, ingest them both thru pores and by mouth, but by golly make sure you are getting a quality product that is pure, extracted properly (low/no temperature and low pressure), and produced from indigenous plants.

  78. What I got from this is that, We don’t know the negative and beneficial effects of essential oils officially because there have been no unbiased studies, and that biased companies will say anything for a buck.

    Which has been the way our system has been for a long time. Now the real test is to see who actually believes said companies.

  79. Great article! As an herbalist with over 20 years experience in essential oils, it is disturbing to see how the two Utah MLM companies have facilitated all of this chaos with untrained sales reps. When I started out in the natural health field, I saw more wisdom and humility among professional colleagues. Now, it seems that the MLM “opportunity” is so strong, and non-professional sales reps are into the building of downlines, and see that as more important than generations of wisdom from European & other sages before us. They’ve fallen for the same MLM line that says “we’re the only ones with such & such”…the only “therapeutic grade” in this case. Typical western mentality is rip it up hard and fast, with no hard facts & years of such high dose ingestion to draw on. But a couple of Utah guys are incredibly rich, right? I’m sure this will anger MLM reps, but it’s the truth, and I wish the younger generation actually listened to the wisdom of the elder generation these days.

  80. This topic has of ingesting oils has been a “hot” topic for me. I was told that it’s completely safe to add a drop (per bottle dosing) of peppermint EO to water for a refreshing drink. I didn’t think twice about not doing this because I really like the taste of mint and find it very refreshing and I trusted the folks that were telling me. The bottle says approved and I wasn’t going beyond what the labeling had recommended. I certainly don’t need to do this everyday, but rather enjoyed the taste. To think that I was actually causing harm to my body based on labeling and recommendation and such a controversial topic as I’ve come to find out is alarming to me. When you ask the simple question can putting the recommended dosing of peppermint EO in a glass of water 1-2 times a day be damaging to your liver, stomach, etc, it’s like no one can answer that question directly. Dr. Oz is seen on TV drinking a glass of Peppermint Oil as well as Dr. Axe telling me that the brand I choose to use is ok. I was told to do my own research, but I’m not a scientist nor do I understand what I’m truly looking for as it pertains to understanding the chemistry of it all. I’m left to to just ask the simple question that no one can really seem to tell me. For now, I’ve stopped taking peppermint internally on a daily dose in my water. Had I thought that I was actually doing damage, I never would have even started. I’m mad that I started something so “hot” topic without really diving into information that at best has left me to question the practice. It’s not even something that I need to do, but to be told that it’s actually a good thing from a wellness advocate to find out it all depends on the side of the fence that you sit on and I’m just saying I wish it was more clear cut.

  81. I’d like to applaud those who *got* the message from this post that ingesting EOs can negatively impact mucosa. Just takes a quick web search to see that this is the prevailing wisdom.

    And I would like to support your educated guess that EOs work either as or in a similar fashion to antibiotics. I have long history with the Lyme bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi. We have been able to deduce when I was infected, which was about a decade before I became ill from it. My immune system kept it pretty well in check until I had a massive hemorrhaging incident and lost half my blood volume. The bugs went crazy causing neurological issues and inflammation in my central nervous system. Took 5 years (and 24 docs) before my symptoms were recognized and I was tested. I took abx and we’ve knocked it back significantly. When I began my abx regimen, I experienced what is called a Herximer reaction which can occur when bugs are dying faster than they can be cleaned out of one’s system. This causes very uncomfortable psychiatric conditions which tend to include paranoia and racing thoughts and can go on for a day or several. Because abx tend to work best at particular times in the lifecycle of the bugs, one may have several herxing expisodes over an extended course of treatment (there are calendars to track this so that people can prepare for the discomfort). I’ve been through enough rounds to have a good idea what this feels like. That said, I was an idiot at one point several years after using abx, and was applying oils neat for about a week based on some idea I got somewhere on the web… and those old, familiar feelings of paranoia began hitting about 5 days in. It felt identical to herxing I experienced previously, so I discontinued that practice immediately. Oils are powerful tools, and I’ll be getting a bit more oversight from someone a LOT better trained going forward. (Please forgive if I have posted this previously – the Lyme took a big hit on my memory.)

  82. Hi,

    i too have inflammatory bowel disease and Im taking probiotics now. I do not want to negatively impact my already challenged bacterial flora. I want to use cypress and helichrysum essential oils Topically only on some varicose veins which I got after my pregnancy.

    Would using these two essential oils topically on the varicose veins on my legs affect my bacterial flora somehow?

  83. Lauren,
    In the line of work you are in, you should be praising essential oils. Your blog may keep many persons from feeling better instantly, and may even steer them towards harmful otc drugs. I do not sell or have even ever boughten a single bottle, but know someone who does. I ingest thieves oil in very small amounts when mixed with raw honey. This is a miracle substance. And, someday, your article will be looked at with zero credibility as these oils DO WORK. I’m so sorry. Maybe, delete and redo the blog.
    I actually came across this because I am looking for an article about Thieves curing cancer patients to send to a friend whose husband is dying of cancer. After his success, like the other 100% of the people I’ve given it to is proven, I’ll be sure to come back and let you know 🙂

  84. I would get the herb directly if I’m want to go for diect ingestion. I would never suggest direct ingestion of essential oils simply because different stuffs works for different people. And most pure essential oil can’t even be applied neat on the skin, let alone direct ingestion. Just when you think it could be the solution to a problem but we’ll never know of any other problems that another person might not tell you. For example sensitivities, allergies, etc

    Lauren. This article is very informative. I do learn something from it though.


  85. THANK YOU!!! I was taught about essential oils by a certified aromatherapy at with over 20 years experience. I was always taught not to ingest EO’s, there were a few exceptions as long as it was diluted but for the most part it is unsafe to do so, especially if it is not a high quality oil. I agree that most people don’t do their research on EO’S and therefore aren’t fully aware of the contraindications.
    I love your honesty and bluntness!

  86. Sounds like drumming up business for nutritionists and others who really are not experts in this area at all.
    People should always research and proceed carefully.
    But you sure do NOT need a nutritionist or dietician to use these oils, carefully, in moderation.
    Naturopaths and herbalists should be part of our healthcare plan, and in the absence of that, people should do their own research.

  87. I find it interesting that although aromatherapists here in the states constantly warn us against the dangers of ever ingesting EOs, people in France have been doing it for years without any harmful effects. I am not advocating blindly ingesting any oil in any quantity, but when one uses “always” and “never”, as most aromatherapists do, I find that I should take that advice with a grain of salt.

  88. This article is really funny when you start using your common sense.

    When you start to think, you realize that people mostly ingest EO’s when they are sick and have a cold, flue or fever and pain. That translates to lets say maybe 1 to 2 drops 3 times a day.

    Compaire this to taking the standard 1000mg antibiotics course when when having just a runny nose or very mild colds. Or when the docter doesn’t really know what is wrong with you and use antibitics as a first try.

    Antibiotics are great for a last resort, but people don’t know what devistation it causes on your whole system.

    This article tries to make people aware of the dangers to the lining of your gut when consuming EO’s.
    Have writer considered antibiotics and it’s implications?

  89. I’m a bit confused. On the one hand you advocate only ingesting EO under the guidance of a trained professional. On the other hand you have a recipe for “butter mints” in which you have peppermint EO as an ingredient! And the link to where one can but the essential oil. So which is it? Medicinal only or perfectly fine for anyone to use in recipes?

    Lydia Wainwright, Licensed Acupuncturist

  90. Thank you for this article! Right there with you! I do have a concern, though, and that is that I have seen Dr. Pappas (whom you refer to in your discussion of what therapeutic grade means) make rather nasty (and surprising!) comments against one MLM company and for another. That is not unbiased- as he claims to be- if you ask me! I am not “for’ or “against” one or the other, but I have also have a rep from one be very passionate about him, indicating that he was one of “them”. These things concern me, as I would very much like to believe I am getting info from an unbiased source, and I just can’t believe that he is such.

  91. I am sooo confused. This week I went to t demonstration on EO’s. They served water with wild Orange EO and gave us all a sample bottle. I do not remember any warning about ingesting. I have been drinking this all week. Made a pitcher and drank all day one day. I even ordered a detox kit. (Expensive). Now I am concerned and worried. Some weird things are going on in my body. Stomach noises, belching sometimes I hear my heart beating. ?? How and what do I do to learn about EOs. There is so much on the internet but a lot is conflicting info. As a beginner where is a good place to start? Thanks for any info you can provide. Caro Davis

  92. Because I’m concerned with the sudden popularity of Young Living & DoTerra oils and I know SO many people think they can trust the sellers rather than doing their own research, I’m sharing this article. Please, people, read, study, look, find, educate yourselves before you use! And, make sure the use is what is advised by EXPERTS who have studied for years, not the modern equivalent of snake oil salesmen!

  93. I used Theives oil in a defuser and had a severe reaction to it. After researching oils I found that many of the individual oils in Theives are actually toxic. Please do NOT put this oil on your child or defuse it anywhere near your children. Research reactions to this and other oils. I cannot stress this enough. The side effects can be fatal if not permanent.

  94. I have used Young Living therapeutic grade for years with no adverse side effect. They are not the new kids on the block they have been around since the 1970’s and have a indisputable reputation. I have used Thieves essential oil (a blend of Clove, Lemon, Rosemary, Cinnamon and Eucalyptus oils) from it’s introduction for diffusing and ingestion with nothing but miraculous results. You must know your product and do your research and I suggest muscle testing as well. What may work for one person may not work for another. Remember all “Essential Oils” are not the same, some essential oils are processed with chemicals. Young Living is committed to producing and selling the finest quality and purest essential oils in the world. As a natural health enthusiast and educator I would only hope that we would be cautious of everything that we take into our body temple, food, herbal remedies and especially pharmaceuticals which have kill more people than all the wars combined.

  95. Last spring I began ingesting a “cold/flu bomb” blend in veggie caps to fight off the first cold i’ve had since 2008. I followed the instructions carefully and correctly. Around that time, I began to experience silent reflux symptoms, and was prescribed acid reducers, which I did not take. I really didn’t connect the oils with this because, it was weeks after my cold went away that I realized that the mucus and lump in my throat wasn’t going away with the cold, as expected. I changed my diet, that didn’t help much. Just recently I began to consider that the oils may have affected the flora in my gut! I began making my own kefir, and I seem to be improving. Also, since it’s the fall in the northeast, I began to consume a ridiculous amount of apples and applesauce. Because I started to feel even better with the apples, I looked up apples effect on reflux and found they also has a healing effect on the sphincter in the esophagus! I posted a question asking if my issue could have anything to do with the oils effect on my stomach flora, on a DoTerra Facebook page called Oil Shares, but I guess that was a “no-no” because the moderator didn’t allow the post. I may never know what caused it, but thankfully it’s getting better!

  96. Hi Folks

    I read every comment firstly I would like to say that this is the first time I have read comments that were mature, non argumentative, respectful and just a downright pleasure to read so thank you one an all. I am so glad I happened across this.

    I am a qualified Holistic Therapist (14 years) and part of that includes being an Aromatherapist which has always been my thing. I call my oils my little jewels and my clients loved them. I am always curious to find out what folks are doing with their oils (case for ingesting or not) in Scotland it is mostly taught in colleges not to ingest at all they do not even go into the oils that can be ingested safely or discuss the why and why nots I think it is easier for them just to not advocate it at all and err on the side of caution and of course it probably runs more deeper than that (time factor, research, insurance etc).

    I have developed wear and tear from my job and recently fibromyalgia which was quite a shock, but I feel I know why so of course I have what I consider the perfect medicine cabinet at my disposal and use my oils a little more intensely from what I would use on my clients with of course as you would guess amazing results but I don’t feel the need to ingest as yet and that is why I found this page and very interesting I found myself nodding at a lot of wonderful and valid points and of course words of caution (always wise).

    Look forward to reading more and offering any help if I can.


  97. While I would not disagree with someone asking their doctor before using essential oils by ingestion, to make sure they do not react adversely with medications, I would not ask my doctor about oils that can help support different bodily systems. Most doctors are going to tell you not to do it, because they want you to keep buying medicine. For instance, my boss clued me into grapeseed extract as an antioxidant. Since I have started taking daily I have gotten sick only rarely. Before taking grapeseed I would get sick often, with kids in school and so forth. Do you think your doctor is going to tell you that grapeseed cleanses your blood stream? That elderberry syrup or extract boosts your immune system? Most will not.

  98. I was skeptical about EO…did a ton of research on them before buying my starter kit. I now swear by them, and I do take a few internally. I purchased a very thorough reference guide that lists all the uses of all the oils the company sells and how to use them. Some are not meant to be taken internally, but for those marked safe for internal use, I do not hesitate to take them in a capsule. I dilute them if the instructions call for that, but many I simply put in a capsule and take…grapefruit, lemon, peppermint, etc. I have been able to stop almost all my prescription medicines. Those are far more synthetic than a natural, safely harvested essential oil. That said, I would not claim essential oils have “cured” me of everything, but neither were the pharmaceutical medicines. If a doctor told me I need to be on a drug the rest of my life, then that drug hasn’t cured me either. It just keeps the symptoms at bay. Any symptoms that come up, a doctor throws another drug at me. I’m sure in the future there will be repercussions from many of these “safe”, FDA approved drugs. Look at all the tv commercials about settlements if you took such and such drug and had such and such happen. Those drugs were supposedly safe. I trust the company I purchased my oils from and, even more importantly, have seen the good of these oils in people who used them before I even signed up to do so.

    • Well said Becky. In France you can go to the pharmacy, tell them which oils you would like encapsulated for what condition and the pharmacist will advise you one way or another and proceed to make your gel caps with the most effective and safe blend for ingestion. How civilized! Yes there are places in the world where essential oils support regular pharmaceuticals or even replace them in borderline cases with the advice of pharmacists and medical doctors. We in North America are underserved in this respect.

    • I’m not a doc or an aromatherapist. I’m just a lady who uses OoO for colds and flus. It’s very good at curbing those. In the process it usually fixes my IBS too. I don’t recommend taking OoO too often, though as you will build a tolerance to it. I only take it a few times a year. It’s powerful stuff.

        • I too am not a doctor but for the record, there are apparently over 50 chemotypes of oregano. Here’s what I know of two in particular: origanum compactum and origanum vulgare. Basically I understand that if the label does not indicate the chemotype it is probably origanum vulgate, Origanum compactum is the one that is recommended for digestion and is an effective anti-parasitic. If Janet believes that you will build a tolerance to it – meaning to me that it will become ineffective.- I would disagree with that from what I know of origanum compactum.

          Oregano Compact is effectively used against bacterial infections, viruses and parasites. For Melissa, the questions are: “what is the chemotype?”; “what is the high dosage?”; and “how long have you been taking it”? Recommendations for internal use suggests a short period – meaning no more than 3 weeks on and then taking a break of one to three weeks and then starting up again if necessary. It may be time to take a break for Melissa. It is a very effective anti-parasitic and is considered necessary by some when travelling to areas of the world where you are unsure of the water and food sources – with the ingestion of it, you will have a safety net.

          As for origanum vulgare – it can be ingested and the best place for it is on your pizza . . . as with all disclaimers . . . this is for educational purposes only and is not a medical recommendation.

  99. Hi Lauren,
    Thank you for your opinion on the ingestion of Essential Oils.
    However, I feel like you have done them a disservice. I appreciate the advice to exercise caution and research when using essential oils. They are profoundly powerful. And they can be very helpful “If” used correctly.
    You stated that you are “uncomfortable ingesting essential oils”. That is a fine point to make. If people are uncomfortable with that then they should not use them. But many people as myself have been using these oils topically, ingestion and for aroma therapy for many many years. Way before the big movement of “The fervent marketing of two popular brands of essential oils” as you put it.
    Unfortunately the “infographics and blog posts” that you are referring to have poisoned the market and the internet with misinformation. Caution is definitely advised but I try not to state that “ingestion” is wrong.

    Also, you referred to Dr. Robert Pappas research and you pointed out his findings and study of essential oils. You quoted him by printing “Let’s get one thing straight: the term therapeutic grade provides marketing weight rather than signifying that the oils meet a regulated quality standard.”

    Then you printed “Essential Oil University, unaffiliated with any oil company, is dedicated to busting essential oil myths like this one.” The author of the page, Dr. Robert Pappas”. That information is misleading at best. You quote a man that started HIS OWN university and calls it “Essential Oil University”. He has a blog and a web page and is getting rich off of people like you who flock to his personal opinion comments and make it gospel. Making his own company grow by flooding the market with his opinions. You infer things like “therapeutic grade” doesn’t exist or there is no such thing as a therapeutic grade standard.”
    Yet, Dr. Pappas web page states this, “But to say there is no such thing as a Therapeutic Grade standard is like saying there is no such thing as essential oils.” He speaks out of both sides of his mouth because he works for one of the two giant essential oil companies..!

    And he states this on his web page, “The truth is that there are MANY therapeutic grade standards. The problem is, which one do you trust.? Hmm.. should it be Dr. Pappas..?
    He continues.. “Its important for people to realize that all of these standards are INTERNAL standards developed by the company themselves and may or may not include quality control by a third party lab.” Like Dr. Pappas lab of course..! He continues to state, “Furthermore, if a third party lab is used, does this lab really know what they are doing?” Like Dr. Pappas lab of course..!

    You stated that Dr. Pappas is “Independant Tester” Yet He gives high kudos to dōTERRA as he works for them “as an independent 3rd party tester”, Then the morally gifted Dr. Pappas states on his blog “Total poppycock!!” to “Young Living oils”… His competition..! Hmm, interesting..?!? How is that NON BIASED Research Dr. Pappas..??
    The ultimate answer to this conundrum is “do your homework” and be wise about ingestion. KNOW your oils. My great great grandmother pressed her own oils in Italy and handed that down through the generations. My family has been doing it for many generations and now with the help of companies like Young Living and others, I can continue the practice with a bit more confidence.
    Thanks for your insight Lauren and I hope after giving “3-reasons to avoid ingesting essential oils” you can give “3-reasons how ingesting essential oils is beneficial” if done properly..!
    Renaldo Vaspucci

  100. The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA) recommends not to ingest, although I wouldn’t say every essential oil is in-digestable. Some people have taken them without no known effects, and of course you would never do this by taking a pure essential oil on its own – you would always dilute it first.
    But yes always be guided by a qualified aromatherapist, and if still in doubt consult your doctor.

  101. I have lived in France and am presently in Canada. I believe that the readers here should know that 100% pure essential oils are sold in pharmacies in France and pharmacists there are trained in homeopathy and essential oils in addition to dispensing pharmaceutical medications. When buying oils, you are often given a pamphlet or verbal advice to let you know which are safe for ingestion and those that are not. As well if you request an oil blend for ingestion and request advice, the pharmacist will make up the gel caps for you and give you an analysis of what you are taking. France has a long history of studying essential oils since many are distilled there and it was there that the therapeutic effects were “discovered” for us in the western world.

    Unfortunately in North America there likely exists a dangerous overuse of ingested essential oils only because here pharmaceutical companies have obliterated any competition, no matter how small and there is so little academic understanding. It can almost be labelled an underground activity an with that comes abuse. An interesting aside from a friend who had to purchase her meds in France – her doctor’s appointment, her lab tests, and the total cost of the medications were less than her insurance deductibles for each in the United States. There’s something wrong with that picture. My own experience with meds is that the one I take is 1/8 of the price (not including the dispensing fee, which are comparable between Canada and France). We have been bamboozled – so yes, caution is necessary, but to say “absolutely not” can be debated.

    • I have written here before about what I know of essential oils – this information I learned in France. Frankincense is not recommended for frequent regular ingestion. The only reason one would take the oil internally, 2 drops with honey and a little olive oil, would be for yeast infection in the mouth – “mycoses buccale”, known as thrush in English.. This would happen for approximately 7 days. It is also recommended internally for palliative care under a physician’s guidance. So making a herbal tea with frankincense sounds like a “no thanks” to me.

  102. I have always had an intense faith in the good of all things natural. Many wise and extremely well educated/researched people in my life take a certain variety of essential oils internally with no ill effects. This is the first that I have found such skepticism dealing with essential oils (pure essential oils) This leaves me very worried! I can hardly bare the though of drinking water without a few drops of peppermint oil. This small habit has been such a positive life change for me, it is devastating to think that it could possibly cause some trauma to my body over time. I truly hope that the topic is better researched in the near future so holistic supporters can feel entirely comfortable. For now, I will carry on with a small whisper of doubt in the background of my thoughts. Giant sad face

    • I am a 49 yr old female and was diagnosed with 4th stage colon cancer a year ago, I am very healthy eater I have was drinking 1 drop of lemon oil and 1 drop of peppermint oil in my glass water bottle for about 3 years, the doctors at Mayo clinic said do take these oils internally. Just saying be careful taking these internally. I also had a natural health specialist tell me the same thing. I still use the lavender at night in my defuser and inhale the peppermint oil for my sinus, it really helps but I do not take internally any longer.

  103. I am just about to finish a bottle of Zicam Naturals Cough Suppressant. Sadly this product has been taken off the market for unexplained reasons. The main ingredient is this product is natural Mentha Pierita, a derivative of peppermint. This cough suppressant is 100X better than any OTC product on the shelves. It’s effects work almost immediately in relieving the spasms from a non-productive cough to thinning the bronchial passages and thus cough becomes productive.
    My question is can I put peppermint oil in my tea and how much?

    • My understanding is that peppermint is ok for regular ingestion – my French guide book says that Peppermin.t is safe for frequent usage. I have a friend who puts a drop of peppermint oil into her water bottle and she probably drinks 4 a day. When making tea, I put a drop of oil in a 4 cup pot of green tea, after it’s steeped, I don’t pour boiling water over the peppermint oil. I use only one drop for the taste because I find it overpowering. I don’t ingest it everyday but I would feel comfortable doing so. Recommended uses for digestive upset is up to 8 drops a day – 2 drops on some honey or olive oil and placed under the tongue up to 4 times a day. So with that, like anything else, moderation is prudent and overuse is discouraged. Since it’s one of those stimulating oils, I don’t drink peppermint water or tea after my evening meal or put it on my skin before I go to sleep.

  104. As a user of the ingestible EO’s since 2000, and ingesting the proper oils in recommended amounts, I have found the results fantastic, the oils can be ingested safely. I’m grateful for the quality that Do Terra offers and the science that backs their products. I switched from Young Living 2 years ago when I began to experience a lack of effect with the peppermint and noticed changes in the formulas to take the more expensive oils out or lessen the amounts.

    You can see the science at and you can always do your own searching on for the studies. Do Terra has offered up their oils for double blind tests by a drug testing company in San Francisco in order to establish basis for claims and establish protocol advice. No other EO company has been confident enough to undergo those rigors and put their products claims on the line.

    The recommendation is small amounts more often get the job done.
    I have met many cancer survivors, Hypothyroid victims, eczema, flu, allergy, GI tract sufferers and a host of other issues, who swear by their experience with the oils and say they are, as I am, so grateful for the quality that has saved their lives and keeps them healthy and thriving.

    with over 2,000,000 users world wide something is going extremely right.
    and I’m extremely grateful.

  105. This article might be more effective if it didn’t seem so biased. Sure we should practice balance in our lives because too much of even a good thing can be harmful to you. The issue I have with this article is it seems to be based more on opinion than fact. The author uses quotes from other authors and “experts” to prove that essential oils “MAY” be harmful to our gut biotics. As I read the quotes, one of them outright contradicted the point of the article, stating that there is no evidence of the essential oils doing harm to gut biotics. Another thing I noticed is the author’s use of overwhelming numbers to try to make a point. “Since we have trillions of bacterial strains in our gut, it far easier to kill beneficial bacteria than it is to replace it.” If a little research is done, one can find that this number is exaggerated ( The third thing that stuck out to me is the author’s citing a group that would seem to have an interest in keeping people from ingesting the essential oils. If one were to look into the origin of the word “aroma,” it would be found that its etymology is, “aroma (n.) Look up aroma at
    early 13c., “fragrant substance,” from Latin aroma “sweet odor,” from Greek aroma “seasoning, any spice or sweet herb,” which is of unknown origin. Meaning “fragrance” is from 1814. A hypercorrect plural is aromata.” (
    It is also defined as:
    1. an odor arising from spices, plants, cooking, etc., especially an agreeable odor; fragrance.
    2. (of wines and spirits) the odor or bouquet.
    3. a pervasive characteristic or quality.
    So why would the Alliance of International Aromatherapists be the experts on what harm or good essential oils have on the body when ingested? Asking an organization that promotes “health and wellness” through breathing in scents if they think that eating or drinking the same natural healthy substances is good or bad, is like asking the pharmaceutical companies if they think it would be better to find a natural cure rather than treat the symptoms through the use of often harmful drugs. One is simply not going to get an unbiased truthful answer. I would think that someone who is professing to teach a balanced approach would be more balanced in what they are telling (teaching) other people. This article is clearly not written with the best intent for its readers, but rather it is a tool being used to sell the author’s own brand of thinking. I just hope that other readers are diligent enough to check these facts as I did.

  106. Thank you for writing this article – it was very useful and thought provoking. I agree with many points you raise and am going to do further research into the parts that I’m not sure about. I am a consultant for a ‘Therapeutic Grade’ essential oil company and I love their oils. However, I’m not such a big fan of the company. I think that network marketing of such powerful oils by untrained professionals is irresponsible. In their defence, regarding the use of therapeutic grade, just to let you know that quality control is done by external auditors and every single batch has to be tested in order to carry the therapeutic stamp. I do believe there is definitely a place for oils in natural therapies and I think there is also a place for ingesting them – I do ingest them in small amounts and certain French aromatherapists have been advocating the use of ingesting oils for decades. From my own experience, I have been encouraged and amazed at the recoveries I’ve personally seen and also heard about, in cancer patients who have been ingesting frankincense and sandalwood in particular. However, it is a grey area, there isn’t enough supporting evidence either way and at the end of the day I guess it’s up to the individual to conduct their own thorough research and to go with what feels right. I believe in balance in all things and for me, it feels right.

  107. I have not ventured into ingesting EOs but love the quality of these companies.,,, and Each of these companies offers testing results for proof of quality.

  108. Ok, so I have gone through all your replis to comments about what essential oils you use and know that you do not use vbo any longer… I am wondering if you have found anything? And also I’d like to know your opinion on large companies like doterra and young living. Im not trying to throw name brands out there… I’m just having a lot of trouble deciding on where to spend my money on a good quality set of essential oils… and it’s hard! Considering I have read that doterra is the largest essential oil company in at least the US… makes me a little hesitant about going with them, or any other big name company out there. I’m not saying they don’t make good products… I’m just saying I need some guidence on how to figure out if they (or anyone else for that matter) are making oils that fit my standards even though I’m not sure what my standards are. 🙂 so just a confused mama here looking for some insight. If this is a topic better discussed out of public forum just let me know.

    • Hi Claudia! I have greatly expanded my knowledge about essential oils in the last year, and have been privileged to learn about them from one of the top experts (and independently-employed) in the field. So this is absolutely going to be deeply discussed on Empowered Sustenance in the near future (the next few months). You’re not alone in your confusion, and I hope to provide a balanced forum of information on EOs here.

  109. It s important to be aware that even though essential oils are natural, the way they are collected is through a man-made process. No where in Nature will you find the levels of concentration you find in EO products. Atoms are natural, but you don’t want to be sitting next to one if somebody decides to split it. In knowledgeable hands EO’s can work miracles, but in the hands of a novice, they could also destroy life. Internal use should only be done after adequate research on the oils your interested in and even then with lots of caution and common sense. Some of these oils can kill if you use the wrong one. Err on the side of caution when it comes to dosage. It is never bad to take too little, but it is always bad to take to much.

  110. No one should be ingesting oils unless their doctor has recomended it. It is extremely harmful to your body and i work at an essential oil company! i can honestly never tell anyone to ingest oils and the people that tell you its safe are other essential oil companies trying to get you to buy their oils! please do research

  111. I am by no means an expert on anything. When it comes to my EOs I have done my research to know what is safe for me and what is not.
    That being said I ingest certain oils just fine and others only use topically.
    Now if you use it topically it is absorbed then sent through the blood stream. I you ingested it it is absorbed in the stomach andthe very first part of the small intestine then through the blood stream.
    If you think about it like an anatomy student or doctor or nurse. Every cell is supplied blood. Dosent matter how it gets there.
    I love my oils and will continue to use them and research them as more information is found.
    You have to know how they are distilled and packaged. If they use fillers or not. If you dont trust where they come from don’t use them.

  112. Please help me! I’m taking the Doterra version of a “morphine bomb” (perhaps a poor name in this day and age, but it’s what I know it as). I suffer from chronic back pain, and have been on as much as 320 mg. of morphine sulfate extended release/relief, 3 times a day…plus 40 mg. Methadone 3 times a day, for breakthrough pain. the latter never did help me, and once I got away from that drug pusher, I was shocked that the first pain specialist I saw after he “quit” (most likely was FORCED to quit by the DEA), was more freaked out by the Methadone dose, and wanted to lower it first….to which I said, ” just take it away….it doesn’t do anything for me!!!” Soon after I went to Alaska (this first visit was actually about 2 months, not one) …I had bottles n bottles of the 200 mg morphine, because I wasn’t able to take it many times…I really felt like I’d die if I tried….so I just wouldn’t take the 200’s….When my eyes were opened, by getting out and doing “stuff” with my family, I realized just how anti-normal I had been living, and went cold turkey! Luckily, I’m someone who doesn’t have withdraw like most people, and through the help of a Christian brother family doctor, who happened to be my pastor’s doctor, agreed to take me on as a patient. I didn’t want to take any more meds, but my pain level was so severe, I absolutely had no choice. My blood pressure was in super danger zone for days at a time. I went to the emergency room many times with the top number well over 200 and the bottom one way over 120…..both serious stroke zone numbers!
    So: The Doterra version of a “morphine bomb”, is 6 drops of frankincense, 6 drops of oregano and a healthy oil to dilute it/protect your stomach….and let me tell you now…the oregano will feel like sucking lava, right from the caldera of an active volcano, through an acid lined/fire proof straw (if you dont use the oil!!! 🙂 Suggestion for preparation: Use 4 size #00 gelatin capsules. I put 2 drops each of the frank. and oreg. in same 3 gelcaps, and then top them off with usually either coconut oil or e.v.o.o. , along with filling the 4th gelcap with the oil. Just start off with at least this much oil, and add or subtract as needed for your stomach condition. I have only ever used Doterra essential oils, but my best friends wife is a young living salesperson, and I’m going to try their version as well. I believe they use frankincense, paira-something and 2 evergreen tree extracts. I am really anxious to compare the 2 types and overall cost. My issue is that for taking this stuff regularly (orally), I trust that doterra and young living are of sufficient quality to swallow. I have NO CLUE what else I can trust!! PLEASE tell me what else (if anything) is just as safe, as condensed, pure, etc……and yet cheaper. 15ml bottle of frankincense for either of these 2 companies, costs 75 dollars U.S. and the Oregano is 24? I think? To me, that is a lot of money! Luckily, it lasts about 2 months (maybe a few days less…but I only take it once or twice a day….and there’s no real study to say if I can take it safely every day. Ive heard from one person who suggested that it was comparable to tylenol (as to its strain on the liver), but I drink about 3 times (or way more times than that, depending on the person) the average amount of water, and I have my liver tested multiple times a day, because of all my meds, and it always comes back in perfect shape!! 🙂 But I’ve only been doing these “bombs” for 2.5 months…but have taken them while in Alaska…or my Sister in Ohio….for a few years now.

    I can’t wait to hear if anyone has suggestions between the types of “morphine bombs”, possibly other concoction’s ……medical knowledge on the safety of ingesting these amounts once or twice a day (six drops each of frank n oregano…..or whatever the formula is for the young living version 🙂 … well as true, independently proven testing and quality of other (hopefully cheaper) brands of the frankincense especially! 75 bux for 15ml’s is a lot of money!!! Thank you all so much for your patience and any responses I get back. I’m excited to learn more!!! May God bless your socks off!!!!

    Dave King.

    • Hi Dave, I appreciate your comment but, due to this website’s privacy policy, I removed the email address which you shared publicly and your request that people email you. People may comment on this thread, however. I will be sharing more in the future about the research, quality and safety of ingesting essential oils, and I hope that will be helpful to you.

  113. Really useful information you have shares here Lauren , I think If someone wish to ingest essential oils , please do so under the guidance of a certified aromatherapist, herbalist or other practitioner who has vast experience with essential oils.

  114. Hello Lauren,

    Thank you for writing out such important information. There is a need to always use caution with anything we use in or on our bodies and you have hit it spot on with the essential oil cautionary tale.

    As a Holistic Nutritionist and soon to be Clinical Herbalist as well as a person who has been diagnosed with UC, I wanted to take a moment to point out a particular statement made by yourself regarding the use of peppermint oil with its antibiotic traits and IBD.
    “We should also ask, why did the peppermint have a beneficial effect for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)? Here’s my theory: because it works as an antibiotic! As someone who has IBD, I can tell you that one of the conventional treatments for it is antibiotics. Just like probiotic therapy, antibiotic therapy helps IBD in many cases, since IBD results from imbalanced gut flora.”

    IBD (Irritable Bowel Disease) comes in the forms of UC and Crohn’s with various off-shoot of the same said diseases. SIBO is NOT a IBD AT ALL. It is associated with people with various forms of IBS and IBD however it is a bacterial issue that arrises as a result of an unbalanced bacterial state in the intestines. This is the ONLY reason as to why they use antibiotics to get rid of the bacterial infection taking place in people with IBS and IBD that have SIBO issues. This can TEMPORARILY make people’s symptoms of IBS and IBD go aways however, without treating the bacterial balance issue (as you have stated) the symptoms of the IBD with invariably come back and usually much worse. This is why it is very important that people with IBD be careful with essential oils and how they are used. One must be on a very specific diet that eliminates any food for the negative bacteria in the intestines, be on a probiotic therapy and be working with a knowledgable Nutritionist or (even better) Naturopath to help with any alternative therapies, including essential oil therapy.
    As someone who also has been diagnosed with UC, I have to point out that “one of the treatments for IBD is antibiotics” is NOT a full statement to imply for people with UC. That is one of the symptomatic treatments for someone with an IBD that has an over-growth of bacteria in their intestines causing massive inflammation that needs to be dealt with immediately (namely Crohn’s). As antibiotics should NEVER be used for treatment with anyone with an IBD (although still used for people with Crohn’s). The drugs used to treat IBD are usually immunosuppressors such as prednisone, TNF inhibitors, methotrexate, etc as well as mesalazine for UC people.

    Best alternative remedies are ones with supportive evidence from an unbiased source. Herbal remedies such as wormwood for Crohn’s and curcumin (aka: turmeric) and psyllium for UC have the supportive evidence to back up its healing properties. Fecal transplants are still in the trial stages however, the evidence suggests that it is helping heal various people completely so we will see what the future is on this.

    All in all, I do enjoy your blogs and what you are doing in regards to helping people and keeping them informed. Please take the above as only a supportive caution as to making sure we completely clarify what is being said so that people with already severe autoimmune dis-eases in their bodies don’t make themselves even more ill at ease.

    Thank you for all you do!

  115. I have had Post Herpetic Neuralgia (pain left from shingles) over my eye for 14 months. I was told by a distributor of essential oils that ingesting Frankincense would help regenerate cells and aleve the pain. She said to take 20 drops in a capsule. But most everything I read says 2 drops under the tongue or in coconut oil.

    I have tried nearly everything to relieve this pain and I don’t want to take opioids. I do have some numbing cream from the doctor but it has side effects with long term usage.

    Does anyone have any answers concerning this condition and EO’s?

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Lauren Geertsen, NTP

I’m an author, entrepreneur, and nutritional therapy practitioner (NTP). I began this website at 19, to share the steps that freed my life of chronic disease and medication. Now, Empowered Sustenance has reached 30 million readers with healthy recipes and holistic resources.

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