The origin of lavender
The origin of lavender is believed to be from the Mediterranean, Middle East and India. Its history goes back some 2500 years.
Lavender is a flowering plant of the mint family known for its beauty, its sweet floral fragrance and its multiple uses.
Lavender derives its name from the Latin ‘lavare’ meaning ‘to wash”. The Romans used Lavender to scent their baths, beds, clothes and even hair. They also discovered its medicinal properties.
Lavender has a wide range of healthy pro
perties. Curing anxiety, depression, sleep disorder, or even healing wounds, lavender is a very useful everyday-companion.
Lavender essential oil has very powerful antiseptic properties. Applying it to wounds can not only increase cell growth causing the wound to heal faster, but it also decreases the appearance of scars. The oils anti-microbial action protects scrapes and wounds from infection, while allowing them heal.
Anxiety and depression.
The essential oil of lavender has a calming, sedative, and anti-convulsive effect. It
can also increase the effectiveness of other relaxants.
A study conducted at the University of Leicester in England showed that the use of lavender essential oil is just as effective in promoting
sound sleep as traditional medication. In fact, many British hospitals offer their patients lavender pillows to help with sleeplessness.
Lavender has also been endorsed by Germany’s Commission E to treat all sorts of stomach and digestive disorders. It soothes the lining of the digestive tract and promotes the secretion of bile, which helps the body digest fats. In addition to this, lavender can also relieve gas pressure and constipation.
Massaging lavender oil onto the temples, neck and forehead can relieve neck and head tension and promote relaxation, thus relieving a variety of headaches. Those included are general headaches, gastric headaches, nervous headaches, sinus and tension headaches.
By massaging lavender oil into the skin, it can be used to treat a number of skin problems such as acne, burns, dry skin, eczema, itchy skin, sunburn, seborrhoea, and skin inflammation.
Insomnia or agitation.
In folklore, pillows were filled with lavender flowers to help restless people fall sleep. Scientific evidence suggests that aromatherapy with lavender may slow the activity of the nervous system, improve sleep quality, promote relaxation, and lift mood in people suffering from sleep disorders. Studies also suggest that massage with essential oils, particularly lavender, may result in improved sleep quality, more stable mood, better concentration, and reduced anxiety.
Women’s health problems.
For pregnancy, lavender can help sooth and relieve flatulence and indigestion. It can diminish the look of stretch marks and scars. It can relieve cramps, infection, breast abscesses, and post-natal depression. A study of lavender by British researchers suggests that using lavender oil during pregnancy and childbirth can help ease delivery pain and promote a speedy recovery.
By either adding lavender to the bath or massaging it into the skin, lavender can help relieve pre-menstrual syndrome, and menstrual cramps. It is effective in aiding the treatment of chlamydia, pelvic inflammatory disease, thrush, vaginal infections, inflamed vaginal tissue, vaginitis, cystitis.
Lavender oil – an all-natural remedy for sinus relief
Lavender essential oil has potent antiseptic, antibacterial, analgesic (painkilling) and expectorant properties. How does it work? Being antibacterial in nature, the oil helps fight germs and bacteria that cause the infection. Lavender oil clears your sinuses by reducing the inflammation. Lavender oil has analgesic properties that help with sinus related headache. Inhaling the essential oil eases breathing when the sinuses and lungs get choked with phlegm.
As a member of the mint family, Lavender has been used for centuries in the preparation of food
either by itself or as an ingredient of Herbes de Provence – an herb combination which
captures the flavors of the sunny south of France.
Lavender delivers a floral, slightly sweet and elegant flavor to salads, soups, meat and seafood
dishes, desserts, cheeses, baked goods and confectionery. For most cooking applications , dried
flowers are used. Only the buds or flowers contain the essential oil of Lavender which is where
the scent and flavor are best derived.