Sunday, February 28, 2010

Healing Haiti: A Call to Fasting and Prayer

Praise God for the healing power of Jesus Christ!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Quote of the Week

You will come to know that what appears today to be a sacrifice will prove instead to be the greatest investment that you will ever make.

~ Unknown

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Young Living Essential Oils Used At Beth Israel Medical Center

This is why I have been a Young Living Essential Oils distributor for 10 years! It is exciting to know that more and more hospitals and health care facilities are recognizing Young Living as the world leader in essential oils.

Be well, Jen

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

More Cancer Fighting Facts About Frankincense

The gift given by the wise men to the baby Jesus probably came across the deserts from Oman. The BBC's Jeremy Howell visits the country to ask whether a commodity that was once worth its weight in gold could be reborn as a treatment for cancer.

Oman's Land of Frankincense is an 11-hour drive southwards from the capital, Muscat.
Most of the journey is through Arabia's Empty Quarter - hundreds of kilometres of flat, dun-coloured desert. Just when you are starting to think this is the only scenery you will ever see again, the Dhofar mountains appear in the distance.

On the other side are green valleys, with cows grazing in them. The Dhofar region catches the tail-end of India's summer monsoons, and they make this the most verdant place on the Arabian peninsula.

Warm winters and showery summers are the perfect conditions for the Boswellia sacra tree to produce the sap called frankincense. These trees grow wild in Dhofar. A tour guide, Mohammed Al-Shahri took me to Wadi Dawkah, a valley 20 km inland from the main city of Salalah, to see a forest of them.

"The records show that frankincense was produced here as far back as 7,000 BC," he says. He produces an army knife. He used to be a member of the Sultan's Special Forces. With a practised flick, he cuts a strip of bark from the trunk of one of the Boswellia sacra trees. Pinpricks of milky-white sap appear on the wood and, very slowly, start to ooze out.

"This is the first cut. But you don't gather this sap," he says. "It releases whatever impurities are in the wood. The farmers return after two or three weeks and make a second, and a third, cut. Then the sap comes out yellow, or bright green, or brown or even black. They take this."
Shortly afterwards, a frankincense farmer arrives in a pick-up truck. He is white-bearded, wearing a brown thobe and the traditional Omani, paisley-patterned turban. He is 67-year-old Salem Mohammed from the Gidad family. Most of the Boswellia sacra trees grow on public land, but custom dictates that each forest is given to one of the local families to farm, and Wadi Dawkah is his turf.

He has an old, black, iron chisel with which he gouges out clumps of dried frankincense.
"We learnt about frankincense from our forefathers and they learnt it from theirs" he says. "The practice has been passed down through the generations. We exported the frankincense, and that's how the families in Dhofar made their livings."And what an export trade it was. Frankincense was sent by camel train to Egypt, and from there to Europe. It was shipped from the ancient port of Sumharan to Persia, India and China. Religions adopted frankincense as a burnt offering.

That is why, according to Matthew's Gospel in the Bible, the Wise Men brought it as a gift to the infant Jesus. Gold: for a king. Frankincense: for God. Myrrh: to embalm Jesus' body after death.
The Roman Empire coveted the frankincense trade. In the first century BCE, Augustus Caesar sent 10,000 troops to invade what the Romans called Arabia Felix to find the source of frankincense and to control its production. The legions, marching from Yemen, were driven back by the heat and the aridity of the desert. They never found their Eldorado. Oman's frankincense trade went into decline three centuries ago, when Portugal fought Oman for dominance of the sea routes in the Indian and the Pacific Oceans.

Nowadays, hardly any Omani frankincense is exported. Partly, this is because bulk buyers, such as the Roman Catholic Church, buy cheaper Somalian varieties. Partly, it is because Omanis now produce so little.
"Years ago, 20 families farmed frankincense in this area," says Salem Mohammed Gidad. "But the younger generation can get well-paid jobs in the government and the oil companies, with pensions. Now, only three people still produce frankincense around here. The trade is really, really tiny!"

Cancer hope

But immunologist Mahmoud Suhail is hoping to open a new chapter in the history of frankincense.
Scientists have observed that there is some agent within frankincense which stops cancer spreading, and which induces cancerous cells to close themselves down. He is trying to find out what this is.

"Cancer starts when the DNA code within the cell's nucleus becomes corrupted," he says. "It seems frankincense has a re-set function. It can tell the cell what the right DNA code should be.
"Frankincense separates the 'brain' of the cancerous cell - the nucleus - from the 'body' - the cytoplasm, and closes down the nucleus to stop it reproducing corrupted DNA codes."
Working with frankincense could revolutionise the treatment of cancer. Currently, with chemotherapy, doctors blast the area around a tumour to kill the cancer, but that also kills healthy cells, and weakens the patient. Treatment with frankincense could eradicate the cancerous cells alone and let the others live. The task now is to isolate the agent within frankincense which, apparently, works this wonder. Some ingredients of frankincense are allergenic, so you cannot give a patient the whole thing. *(Jen's note: Many people have used frankincense essential oil in its complete form to fight cancer with no allergenic reaction. It would be more accurate to say that you cannot give some patients the whole thing in my opinion.)

Dr Suhail (who is originally from Iraq) has teamed up with medical scientists from the University of Oklahoma for the task. In his laboratory in Salalah, he extracts the essential oil from locally produced frankincense. Then, he separates the oil into its constituent agents, such as Boswellic acid.
"There are 17 active agents in frankincense essential oil," says Dr Suhail. "We are using a process of elimination. We have cancer sufferers - for example, a horse in South Africa - and we are giving them tiny doses of each agent until we find the one which works."
"Some scientists think Boswellic acid is the key ingredient. But I think this is wrong. Many other essential oils - like oil from sandalwood - contain Boswellic acid, but they don't have this effect on cancer cells. So we are starting afresh."

The trials will take months to conduct and whatever results come out of them will take longer still to be verified. But this is a blink of the eye in the history of frankincense.
Nine thousand years ago, Omanis gathered it and burnt it for its curative and cleansing properties. It could be a key to the medical science of tomorrow.

Jeremy Howell reports for Middle East Business Report on BBC World News.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Quote of the Week

"Those engaged in a healing mission with essential oils are constantly called upon to rely upon their intuitive faculties to decide which oils to use and how. This is necessary because there simply is not enough factual or scientific data available to make such decisions by intellectual means. This deficiency in applied research will eventually be remedied in time, perhaps over the next two centuries or so, but for the time being intuition is our best tool and, often, our only tool. "

~ Dr. David Stewart, author of Healing Oils of the Bible

Sunday, February 14, 2010

You've Lost That Loving Feeling?

According to Elizabeth Scott, M.S., stress in your life can lead to low libido. You may have already instinctively felt this, but studies prove that general stressors in your life can impact your sex drive. That means job stress, financial stress, the stress of being too busy, and especially relationship stress can negatively impact your libido, possibly causing stress in yet another area of your life.

Stress can affect your libido for several reasons.

Stress Response Affects Hormones

When you react to stress, your body goes through a series of changes in order to prepare you to run away or stay and fight, called your fight or flight response. Part of this response is the release of hormones such as cortisol and epinephrine (or adrenaline). If your stress response isn’t reversed, it can contribute to a condition known as chronic stress, and can also interfere with the hormones involved in your sexual response. The result can be low libido.
Busy Lifestyles Drain Sexual Energy

Many of us find ourselves busier than we ever thought possible. Especially for women, juggling multiple responsibilities of parenting, jobs, and keeping the household afloat can lead to an absolutely packed schedule. How can lead to low libido? Being constantly busy means having little down time, which can be an energy drain and a drain on your sex drive. A busy schedule can mean a busy mind — and having a lot on your mind can make it difficult to relax and "get in the mood," especially for women. A busy schedule can even present difficulties in finding the time for sex, or make it feel like just one more thing on your mile-long "to-do list." All of these factors can contribute to a lower libido.
Relationship Stress Can Hinder Intimacy

Relationship issues are perhaps the biggest issue to look at when dealing with low libido. Studies show that relationship stress— stress due to conflict within the relationship and other factors inside the relationship can be a stronger factor in low libido than other types of stress. This is true for both men and women. And because men and women both say that their partner’s satisfaction impacts their own libido, a lack of interest in one partner can mean a lack of interest for both partners. Low libido itself can be part of a conflicted dynamic that can lead to -- you guessed it -- more problems with low libido!

Studies also show that "positive touch" by a partner can have a soothing effect on women and help a woman feel more resilient toward stress, so losing this stress buffer can be another turn in a downward spiral of stress and low libido. Because relationship conflict can cause stress, lead to more circumstances that cause stress, and deprive you of stress-buffering effects as well, relationship difficulties are important to work through for the sake of your sex life.

Aromatherapy, especially when applied with massage, is a great way to promote mutual relaxation and kindle romance by calming the stress response!

How do essential oils affect the body's stress alarm system? Research* has led scientists to the conclusion that one of the reasons essential oils work as "balancers" in a person's nervous system is that they contain a complex assortment of biochemicals, some of which are stimulating and some of which are sedating. It appears that the actions of these multiple chemicals present in aromatic plant oils are synergistic and complementary, stimulating certain parts of the brain and sedating other parts at the same time, creating an overall beneficial, balancing effect. Curiously, the oils seem to "know" chemically which action is most needed! In aromatherapy, these oils are referred to as "adaptogens" because they can create different influences, depending on what the person needs for balance.

*Tisserand, R., "Essential Oils as Therapeutic agents" in Dodd, G.H. and Van Toller, S., Perfumery: The Psychology and Biology of Fragrance 1, Chapmand and Hall,1190, p.169

Recommended Essential Oils For Female Libido:

Jasmine Absolute
Ylang Ylang

Recommended Essential Oils For Male Libido:

Black Pepper
Ylang Ylang
(Jen's note: Ok, the names of these recommended EO blends from my reference guide made me snicker! There are many women out there who would say their sex life would be fine if he would just think (Brain Power) and change (Transformation). Too funny! )

Any of the oils listed can be diffused into the air or diluted 50:50 in jojoba or grapeseed oil for topical application. Massage 4-6 drops of the mixture on neck, shoulders and lower abdomen 1-3 times daily. The seductive floral Young Living Sensation EO Blend is also formulated in a bath gel and premixed massage oil.

Happy Valentine's Day!
Be Well, Jen

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Reader Asks....

Recently an Oils For Wellness follower (and a top commenter I might add) asked some great questions. I thought it would be helpful to the other readers to answer them as a post rather than just a comment so here goes.
PJ at PJ's Prose says:

I do have a couple of questions if you don't mind. =)

If I read correctly, you can use essential oils in many different ways, including ingesting them. Is it just as effective inhaling them as it is ingesting them?

OFW: ONLY therapeutic grade essential oils that are labeled as a dietary supplement are safe to take internally. Look for a white box that says "supplement facts" on the label. Young Living Essential Oils is one of the very few aromatherapy companies in the world that grow, test, research, and distribute these pure plant oils to use as medicine.

Inhalation of oils is particularly useful for respiratory and emotional issues, as well as cleansing environmental air. Spinal or muscle injuries benefit the most by topical application to the spine, reflex points of the feet, or specific injured area. Internal use of essential oils is extremely beneficial for digestion, boosting the immune system, and in the case of a major health crisis like infections, cancer, and parasites. In some cases, all three methods of application of essential oils (topical, inhalation, and ingestion) are interchangeable and may produce similar benefits.

Do you use a diffuser or can you use an oil burner or does it matter?

OFW: A cold air diffuser, preferably an ultrasonic one, is the best way to disperse the essential oils into the air with the therapeutic molecules intact. Heating essential oils in ways such as an oil burner can destroy the delicate chemical make up of the EOs which gives them their healing properties.

Wouldn't the size of the room affect how much of the properties of the oils were getting into your system?

OFW: Diffusing in a smaller room does concentrate the number of molecules that are inhaled in short time period, however the molecules can remain suspended in an indoor environment for several days and are still beneficial even if diffused in a larger area. If there is respiratory congestion, for instance, it would be a good to get a larger concentration of EOs into the system quickly to break up the mucus/phlegm and fight infection.

Would the actual herb/flower be just as effective if brewed into a tea?

OFW: Essential oils are the therapeutic properties or "life essence" of a plant. When herbs are dried 30-90% of the essential oils evaporate. So when EOs are distilled, it makes them very concentrated. An acre of lavender can be distilled into one bottle of essential oil. One drop of peppermint EO is equal in strength to 28 cups of peppermint herbal tea! While herbal teas are certainly still useful, essential oils offer a broader spectrum of therapeutic properties that work in synergy to affect body, mind, and spirit.

The ability of essential oils to act on both the mind and the body makes them truly unique among therapeutic agents. The fragrance of some essential oils can be very stimulating- both psychologically and physically while the fragrance of other essential oils may be calming and sedating, helping to overcome anxiety or hyperactivity. On a physiological level, EOs may stimulate immune function and regenerate damaged tissue. Essential oils may also combat infectious disease by killing viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens. All of these things can occur simultaneously, which makes the use of clinical aromatherapy so exciting and fascinating!
Subscribe to my free e-newsletter to learn more about how essential oils can benefit your health everyday!
Yours in wellness, purpose, and abundance,

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Quote of the Week

We can do no great things;
only small things with great love.
~Mother Teresa

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Frankincense Used to Treat Bladder Cancer

From, March 2009

FRANKINCENSE, an aromatic tree oil and in Christian tradition one of the three wise men's gifts to the baby Jesus, may be a helpful treatment for bladder cancer, according to a study published today.

US scientists tested an enriched extract of the frankincense herb boswellia carteri on both human bladder cancer cells and normal bladder cells in laboratory experiments.

The oil suppressed cancer growth and activated mechanisms which kill the dangerous cells, they said.

"Frankincense oil can discriminate bladder cancer cells and normal urothelial cells in culture. The oil suppresses cell survival and induces apoptosis in cultured bladder cancer cells," said the study.

Lead researcher Doctor Hsueh-Kung Lin of the University of Oklahoma said: "Frankincense oil may represent an inexpensive alternative therapy for patients currently suffering from bladder cancer."

The study noted that the oil originated from Africa, India and the Middle East and has been "important both socially and economically as an ingredient in incense and perfumes for thousands of years".

According to the Bible, it was presented to the infant Jesus by the three wise men, along with gold and myrrh.

The study was published in the online British Medical Council journal Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Mcklinky Blog Hop: About 20 Years Ago

The Blog Hop theme for this Monday is "ABOUT 20 YEARS AGO". Tell us about your life 20 years ago. What were you doing? Where were you? What direction were you heading? How is your life different now that what you THOUGHT it would be?

Well, I wasn't the OilGirl in 1990! I dreamed of marrying a cowboy or becoming a horse trainer and riding instructor. Even though I was interested in natural remedies, I didn't know anything about aromatherapy and essential oils. Being 17 years old, I felt like I was waiting for my life to begin. My family life was crumbling and I had no real friends to speak of. I had a healthy imagination and fantasized about what kind of life I would like to have. A writer? Singer? I had hope of better days anyway, in spite of enduring a pretty grim era in my life.

That year I lived in North Dakota with some friends for 6 months, met a German exchange student who is still a dear penpal to this day, and fell in and out of infatuation with a hunky Marine who didn't know I existed. I have to smile now at the waste of emotions that are spent at the age of 17!

MckLinky Blog Hop