2. Lavender: An Oil for All Purposes
~^~ by Greg Hitter, PhD
It might be a good time to stock up on lavender oil. Gary Young reported in his December conference call that half the French lavender harvest is dead, and it likely will take eight years to come back. Gary noted that the Growers Association reported that the price of lavender was up 30% already in 2010. And it will get much more expensive over the next few years as demand increases and the supply becomes more unavailable.
Of course we expect lavindin and linalool to be used even more to "cut"lavender now. The market will be further glutted with so-called "lavender" that doesn't have the expected effect--thus giving a bad name to oils -- even more than lavender oil has already been corrupted and slandered!.
It's a shame that this has occurred. Apparently 5 years of drought combined with a year of record rain in France led to conditions for a "mutating virus" to devastate the French lavender fields of Provence.
THE AMAZING VERSATILITY OF LAVENDER
Fortunately Gary Young had the foresight to grow lavender in Utah on the YL Farm. So we have a supply for a few years. But with demand increasing, the price will climb considerably within Young Living.
Lavender is a "universal oil" that can be used for restoring balance to nearly every type of body-mind condition. The phrase "when in doubt use lavender" is a truism often acted upon in the YL oils community.
From my background as a psychotherapist and a psychologist, I have found lavender to be particularly useful in affecting the limbic system--the area of the brain where traumatic emotion is stored, and from which the rest of the body-mind is modulated.
The limbic system's traumatic store of negative experience is central to the "cell memory" and "dis-ease" programmed into all the other body-mind systems (hormonal, cardiovascular, immune, digestive, hepatic, muscular-skeletal, etc.). Lavender is a great tool in our natural arsenal to counter traumatic cell memory and its negative effects on the body and mind.
For example, I've found lavender more useful than the Peace & Calming oil blend (or other typically-recommended essential oils or blends) for alleviating muscle cramps when inhaled through the nose (rather than applied on the site of the spasm muscle). Inhaling lavender this way (through the nose) goes directly to the limbic system, where modulating effects on muscle (tension) occurs. Try it yourself the next time you're awakened by leg cramps and can't sleep, or after a chill, tiredness, or over activity leads to cramping!
In general, I've found lavender especially good for restoring balance to the autonomic nervous system and its two subsystems, the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems, which often go askew under trauma, usually resulting in serious mind-body problems.
Lavender's ability to reduce inflammation is also well known & researched, which speaks to its universal ability to influence all body-mind systems, much like the other great anti-inflammatory, frankincense, which has long been used in Europe for decreasing inflammation in cancer cases and other diseases. Dr. Suhail, MD, our frankincense distiller from Oman, spoke about the anti-inflammatory effects of frankincense at the Young Living Convention in Salt Lake City this last Fall. Like lavender, I consider frankincense to be a universal oil, able to bring balance to most any unbalance. So lavender, like frankincense, is a potent anti-inflammatory.
Lavender is often also very effective for anxiety, depression, and emotional imbalance, being found in many of the blends targeting the brain, emotion, and the psyche. YL blends containing lavender include: Brain Power, Awaken, Dragon Time, Egyptian Gold, Envision, Estro Tincture, Forgiveness, Gathering, Gentle Baby, Harmony, Highest Potential, Motivation, M-Grain, R.C., SARA, Surrender, Trauma Life).
Because of its "universal" nature, positively effecting all systems of the body-mind, lavender is a great stress buster! It's effects on restoring immune function (because of its stress-busting ability) are usually under- appreciated. We've become so overwhelmed and conditioned by stress in our lives that we are largely unconscious of stress and its bad effects. And so stress, in all its dimensions, largely goes unrecognized.
To" wake up and smell the lavender" is to take a big step toward well being! What a great way to start your day, every day!
The destruction of the French lavender market is indeed a serious blow to all of us who now may have to do without, pay more, or purchase poor-quality, ineffectual, and thus "false" lavender oil. It's a good time to stock up on "old reliable," Young Living lavender, before the price increases.
Editor's Note: Greg Hitter, PhD, is a Silver Young Living distributor and a clinical psychologist who has used essential oils in his practice for many years. He is author of the book, "Butterflies in a Bottle," available from www.YL Wisdom.com. He has gives personal growth seminars and can be contacted in the following ways: (805) 781-0309, Selfquesting@cs.com, or www.selfquesting.com