by Dr. Christoph Streicher
Eucalyptus Globulus is a type of eucalyptus that is often used in saunas and steam rooms because it smells fresh and invigorating. Its fragrance is thought to open the breathing passages and purify the air. It can also be diluted and used for pain and sore muscles.
But often, Eucalyptus Globulus doesn’t provide the expected benefit of bronchial relief. Why? Eucalyptus Globulus is commonly sold in a rectified form. Rectification is a way of redistilling an oil, and it’s often done to increase 1.8-cineol, as well as to remove the oil’s strange fruity smell. 1.8-cineol is thought to be the “active” mucus-solving compound. Rectification increases the 1.8-cineol content from 65% to about 85% or 90%.
The problem is that although 1.8-cineol is mucus-solving, it also has a contracting effect on smooth muscle tissue. Instead of opening up the breathing passages, it closes them down. That’s why people often don’t notice any benefit from using ordinary eucalyptus.
However, if you use Eucalyptus Globulus in its unrectified form, the oil has a relaxing effect on the smooth muscle tissue of the bronchi. But, it also contains a number of high-boiling compounds (those with high boiling points), which are irritating to the upper respiratory organs. For example, aromadendrene and delta-cadinene are each often there in quantities of 3% or more. So although it doesn’t contract the bronchi, some people find it very irritating.
Fortunately, Amrita has located a source of organic unrectified Eucalyptus Globulus that is very low in these high-boiling substances. It gives you all the expansive and relaxing effects that Eucalyptus should have on the bronchi and also dissolves mucus, but it doesn’t irritate the mucus membranes.
Other Types Of Eucalyptus Oil
There are numerous types of eucalyptus oil grown in many countries. Amrita Aromatherapy supplies these types:
- Eucalyptus Citriodora (Certified Organic) – known for its strong and fresh citronella-like scent that repels insects, and its ability to kill bacteria.
- Eucalyptus Radiata (Certified Organic) – a gentle alternative to Sweet Eucalyptus (E. Globulus). It is said to ease colds and congestion. It is mild enough for use with small children.
- Eucalyptus Staigeriana (Certified Organic) – said to be antiseptic and anti-inflammatory. It is very mild, due to a low amount of 1.8 cineol. It is the best type of eucalyptus oil to use for children and people with sensitive skin. It is the least aggressive or irritating. We recommend that you use it for preventive purposes during the cold season.
Safety Precautions For All Types Of Eucalyptus: Eucalyptus essential oils are poisonous if ingested, and even small amounts can be fatal. They must be diluted for use on the skin, otherwise they can irritate it.
Which type of eucalyptus oil do you like to use? Please comment below so we can all learn.
Disclaimer: The statements made on this page have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). They are not intended to diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. If a condition persists, please contact your physician or healthcare provider. The information provided is not a substitute for a face-to-face consultation with a healthcare provider, and should not be construed as medical advice.