We all know just how impactful essential oils can be for helping us get to sleep. What you might not know is just how incredible they can be for use during the day. Seventy-five percent of our emotions are prompted by scent making the application of essential oils a powerful tool. You can apply them to your sensory points, use them to scent your space, or use them in a mid-day bath to reap the myriad of benefits.
There is scientific evidence that using essential oils can help to boost your energy levels (1). Using essential oils before exercise can stimulate circulation, support the nerves and mind, and give you a boost. In fact, one study found the athletes were able to perform better after inhaling peppermint essential oil (1). Using essential oils can help to give you extra motivation to stick to a new routine and encourages the mind to become more active and invigorated (2).
When meditating, it can be helpful to create a calm and serene environment using essential oils. Not only do they help to centre the mind and help to reduce anxiety, it can help you to create a routine that helps you maintain the practice over a period of time. Meditation and essential oils have both been proven to help reduce stress and anxiety, so combining them can create a serene and powerful practice (3,4).
The mid-day slump
We’ve all hit that midday wall where you feel like nothing productive is going to happen and you need a cup of coffee or a snack to get you through it and regain your focus and concentration. Essential oils can be a great replacement for that snack or cup of coffee. Research shows that the scent of certain essential oils can create alertness in the brain, helping you to concentrate and improve memory tasks. Neurological scientists at Rush University Medical Center found feeding cinnamon to laboratory mice made them better learners and improved their memory. Mice involved in the study received oral feedings of ground cinnamon, which in turn metabolised into sodium benzoate, a chemical used as a drug treatment for brain damage (5). This means that using cinnamon essential oil could have a similar effect on humans.
Exercise is a key part of a healthy, well rounded life, but sometimes the amount of time it takes for our muscles to recover is tiresome and frustrating. Essential oils can help to reduce inflammation, making recovery after a workout easier and more effective. Cypress, peppermint, tea tree, may chang, and other essential oils have all been found to have powerful anti-inflammatory effects which reduces your recovery time by speeding up cell recovery (6). A great way to help speed along the muscle recovery process is to use essential oils in a recovery massage after exercising or to include them in a bath to help loosen up stiff muscles.
No matter what essential oil you choose to use, there are plenty of well researched benefits to including them in any part of your day, not just at night. The science of aromachology is still growing, so in the coming years, we’ll learn more about what essential oils are capable of and how they can benefit us in our everyday life.