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Essential Oil Profile: Helichrysum

November 10, 2014

by  

Marie Temmen

 

 

 

Common Name:Everlasting

 

Latin Binomial:Helichrysum italicum, Helichrysum angustifolium

 

Family: Asteraceae (Compositae)

 

Other Common Names: Immortelle, St. John’s herb

 

Part Used: Flowering tops

 

Production Method:steam distillation (an absolute may be produced by solvent extraction.)

 

Countries of Origin: Helichrysum is native to the Mediterranean. It is cultivated in Italy, the Balkans, Spain and France.

 

Typical Constituents: a-pinene, camphene, myrcenc, limonene,1,8 cineole, linalool, terpinen-4-ol, Neryl acetate, nerol, geraniol, eugenol, italidone

 

Description of Oil: Everlasting has an intense, rich, honey-like scent with delicate tea like undertones. It is a liquid and ranges in color from pale yellow to red.

 

Description of Plant: This plant has daisy-like brightly colored flowers and is generally about 60 cm’s in height. This is a strongly aromatic herb.

 

History, Folklore and Myth: Helichrysum has a long history of medicinal use and those uses mirror today’s use of this essential oil. Prior to the early 1980’s helichrysum was not found in essential oil catalogs. Pierre Franchomme and Daniel Penoel are credited with popularizing this oil in the United States.

 

Precautions and Contraindications: This oil is non-toxic, non-irritant and non-sensitizing.

 

Properties and Uses: Helichrysum has cicatrisant properties which reduce presence of scar tissue.

 

It is anti-inflammatory and anti-allergenic making it useful for inflamed skin, eczema or dermatitis. It is also excellent in preventing formation of bruises following an injury.

 

This oil is also beneficial for treatment of respiratory conditions. It is mucolytic, expectorant and antispasmodic, making it useful for conditions such as sinus infections, bronchitis and spasmodic coughing.

 

Helichrysum is appropriate as a first-aid oil. It may be applied neat to injuries until further treatment can be sought. It reduces swelling, disinfects the wound and promotes healing through tissue regeneration.

 

From an emotional perspective helichrysum is helpful when dealing with issues of depression, stress, lethargy and mental exhaustion. It is thought to stimulate the right side of the brain thus being useful for stimulating art and creativity.

 

Helichrysum is a grounding oil and brings warmth to one dealing with emotional coldness.

 

Conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis may be treated with helichrysum as it has anti-inflammatory properties.

 

 

 

Bibliography

 

Battaglia, Salvatore. The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. Virginia, Queensland, Australia: The Perfect Potion. 1995.

 

Grace, Ulla-Maija. Ulla-Maija Grace ‘s Aromatherapy for Practitioners. CW Daniel Co.Ltd. 1996

 

Worwood, Valerie. The Fragrant Mind. New World Library. 1996

 

Lawless, Julia. Encyclopedia Of Essential Oils. Element Books Ltd. l992

 

Sheppard-Hanger, Sylla. The Aromatherapy Practitioner Reference Manual. The Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy, Tampa FL, 1995.




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