Do you have a cold? Buy lavender. Annoying neuralgia? Have some tea with lavender. Can’t sleep at night? Take a fragrant bath with lavender before bedtime. Are you tired of moths, mosquitoes and other small insects? Place some lavender on your windowsill. To learn more about these and many other reasons to love lavender – please read this article!
Botanical characteristics of lavender
(lavandula officinalis l.), family — lamiaceae
Lavender – fragrant shrub – perennial, reaching a height of one meter. Worldwide, there are about 47 varieties of spice plant. The root of lavender is pivotal and stiff. The above-ground section forms many branches, which over time partially covers with bark. The appearance of the leaves depends on the variety – there are both narrow and wide leaves. Flowers are collected in inflorescences at the top of the plant. Color varies from pale lilac to deep dark purple. Flowering bushes begin in June, and last until the end of August. Seeds are formed at the end of August/September. The heat-loving plant is not afraid of drought, and is found in the mountains and steppes.
The birthplace of lavender is considered to be the picturesque shores of the Mediterranean. In decorative conditions, shrubs spread throughout the world.
Other names: Levanda, Lavenda, colored grass.
Chemical composition of lavender
The incomparable scent of lavender cannot be confused. A gentle, and at the same time, tart aroma comes from the shrub due to its chemical composition; namely, a large amount of essential oil contained in all parts of the plant.
Lavender essential oil:
- Leaves – up to 0.4%;
- Stems – up to 0.2%;
- Inflorescences – 3.5 – 4.5%;
- Acetic, valerian, caproic, butyric, ursolic acid;
- Cineol, geraniol, borneol;
- Tannins – up to 12%;
- Resin, L-linalool, coumarin, herniarin.
Benefits and application of lavender
Do you have a cold? Buy lavender. Annoying neuralgia? Have some tea with lavender. Can’t sleep at night? Take a fragrant bath with lavender before bedtime. Are you tired of moths, mosquitos, and other small insects? Place some lavender on your windowsill.
Truly, lavender has many advantages. Lavender helps to get rid of stress, heal minor lesions on the skin, and even fill a residential house with a light floral scent. Lavender tea has antispasmodic and antiseptic effects. And, of course, goodbye insomnia! In cooking, lavender is used as an additive to vegetable and mushroom soups, salads and sauces; it goes well with fish and lamb. In aromatherapy, lavender creates an excellent composition with Mint, Sage, Thyme and Melissa.
Indications for use: insomnia, stress, migraines, colds, minor skin damage.
Contraindications: pregnancy, individual intolerance, hormonal disruptions, and taking medicine containing iodine and iron.
|Do not apply concentrated essential oil on open wounds!|
Benefits and application of lavender essential oil
Lavender essential oil is used in the perfume, aromatherapy, medical and cosmetic industries.
The benefits of essential oil are multifaceted:
- Healthy sleep.
Inhalation of lavender’s essential oil vapor is an alternative treatment for insomnia. An experiment conducted in a medical institution for the elderly showed tremendous results: the quality of sleep for the participants remained identical after the usual sleeping pills were replaced with lavender oil applied to the pillow.
- Emotional Resilience.
Lavender oil has a beneficial effect on the human nervous system. Aromatherapy is indicated for people who suffer from increased stress, constant migraines and headaches, and nervous tension. And at the same time, it increases brain activity.
Massage with the use of essential oil is shown to help people with various diseases of the musculoskeletal system. In particular: rheumatism, muscular pain, sprain, back and joint pain.
Lavender tea stimulates urine excretion, eliminates inflammation of the bladder, relieves spasms associated with urinary disorders.
- The immune system.
Studies in the twentieth century have shown that breathing essential oil vapors can alleviate for humans with tuberculosis, typhoid, and diphtheria. Lavender oil has an antibacterial effect, and helps with a cold.
- Healthy skin.
Dermatologists recommend using essential oil to treat acne and regulate the secretion of sebaceous glands. Scar healing is much faster, and in combination with chamomile the symptoms of eczema will disappear within the first week.
Normalization of blood pressure.
Lavender essential oil improves blood microcirculation (another additional plus to healthy skin). It is useful for people with abnormal blood pressure to arrange lavender aromatherapy.
- Prevention of baldness.
Studies have shown that more than 45% of patients with autoimmune diseases, in which rejection of the hair follicle was a characteristic symptom, rubbed lavender oil into the scalp. Later, patients reported an increase in hair growth in the problem area.
Although no medical studies were conducted on humans, the effects of lavender oil on mice with breast cancer were observed under laboratory conditions. The researchers concluded that in combination with other oils, lavender has the ability to affect carcinogens.
- Stop insects.
The smell of lavender oil scares off small insects such as mosquitoes, midges, and moths.
|Attention! Excessive use of lavender essential oil leads to headaches in some people, and may cause nausea. Concentrated essential oil should not be directly ingested. Reception of concentrated lavender oil can cause blurred vision, difficulty breathing, burning eyes, vomiting and diarrhea, so do not take it in food!|
Health recipes with lavender
Skin cream. Cleans pores, soothes inflammation and irritation.
- Add 2-3 drops of lavender oil to the moisturizer. Apply at night. Frequency of use – 1 time every 2 weeks.
Shampoo. For dandruff and oily scalp. Soothes itching.
- In your regular shampoo, add a couple drops of lavender essential oil, washing your hair as usual.
Lavender tea for colds.
- Pour boiling water (250 ml) twigs (2-3 pieces) of lavender. Let it stand. Add twigs to the teapot with black or any other type of tea (according to your taste). It is advisable to drink at night. Frequency of use – no more than 1 time per day.
Tea “mixture of herbs” for stress.
- 5 g of dried lavender / 5 g of dried leaves of mint / 5 g of dried marjoram.
Mix herbs, pour boiling water. Let it brew. Tea is ready to drink.
Lavender bath. Relaxation after a busy day. Avoid spasms.
- For the bath, use about 30 drops per 100 liters of water. Enjoy your relaxation!
Compress. Neuralgia. Articular rheumatism.
- 50 ml alcohol / 2 teaspoons lavender flowers.
Mix the ingredients, hermetically close. Leave for 2 weeks in a dark place. Ready-made compress is used for rubbing sore spots.
Remember! There is always the possibility of the negative influence of the active substances of lavender in combination with other herbs and medicines. Before use, consult your doctor.
Interesting facts about lavender
- Lavender was discovered on the excavations of Tutankhamun’s tomb – after 3,000 years the plant aroma was still preserved!
- Lavender in Latin means “wash.” The ancient Romans had already added lavender to their baths to give a pleasant aroma. And in ancient Greece, dried lavender flowers were set on fire and left in a residential house for the same purpose.
- In the Middle Ages, people attributed magical properties to lavender. Superstitious people made a cross from dried flowers. Crosses were worn on themselves, or hung up in a house so that misfortune would not touch their home.