OSHADHI ESSENTIAL OILS
Marie Laveau Organic Skin Care’s choice of Essential oils- one of the largest range of Organic and Wild crafted pure essential oils in the world
Oshadhi has over 500 pure essential oils- ethically sourced through methods of wild craft, certified organic or select farming straight from the grower!
It also has over 300 synergies (3-5 pure essential oils combined) for diffusing purpose.
The name “Oshadhi” has its origin in the ancient Vedic culture of India dating back over 5,000 years. This ancient culture has a well-established tradition of natural medicine known as Ayur Veda, which incorporates the use of essential oils. The sages of this tradition gave the Sanskrit name “Oshadhi”, which means “carrier of light” or “giver of life force”, to the kingdom of medicinal or healing plants. This is very insightful, if one considers the process of photosynthesis in plants and how essential oils are created within the plant’s cells through the process of transforming the sun’s light into energy. These vital reservoirs of concentrated sun energy, when extracted, have enormous potential to be great benefactors for mankind.
At the heart of the Oshadhi product line is a rich collection of pure essential oils from controlled organic cultivation, wild grown plants and carefully selected imports found in a variety of climatic and geographic regions throughout the world.
The vast collection is the result of many years of extensive travel and research by Dr. Malte Hozzel, founder and president of Ayus Quality of Life Products in Germany and the creator of the Oshadhi line of products.
Since antiquity, essential oils have been used for their powerful therapeutic qualities and today they are once again gaining appreciation in the practices of aromatherapy, which uses essential oils in massage, bath and inhalation treatments. In selecting the oils, they have been careful to consider only therapeutic quality and practitioner grade essential oils.
They are selected only when the finest are currently available.
PRODUCTION OF ESSENTIAL OILS
Essential oils can be produced in a number of different ways
Most essential oils are produced by steam distillation (see picture montage on this page of Nana Mint production in Morocco). Steam distillation should ideally be by low or medium pressure without the use of chemical solvents. Unfortunately, the distiller or producer is often more concerned with profit than with the correct treatment of the plants. High steam pressure and quick distillation are more cost-effective, but rarely create a fine and precious product. This is why organic farmers distill their plants very carefully with the slower method of low pressure steam distillation when they create organic essential oils.
Many plants require a longer time to distill in order to extract the entire spectrum from head to tail of active substances (particularly the slow boiling sesquiterpenes) in the essential oil. These slow low pressure methods yield a richer, therapeutically more effective essential oil.
Most citrus essential oils are produced through the method of cold pressing. This involves gentle abrasion of the rind of the fruit, releasing the oil contained in tiny oil glands in the peel.
This is the usual method for the production of oils from very fragrant flower plants like Jasmine, Tuberose, Red Champaca (in fact many of the oils used in perfumery). Oils produced in this way are known as absolutes. The plant material is thoroughly mixed with a solvent such as hexane, which dissolves out the aromatic substances, and also waxes and other products. The solvent is then recovered, leaving a residue know as a concrete. The waxes and other unrequired ingredients are removed from the concrete with alcohol, leaving the oil.
CO2 extraction uses carbon dioxide to extract the aromatic substances from the plants. This method allows a low 'cold' treatment of the plants because the oil can be extracted at temperatures of about 30 degrees Celsius (90 degrees Fahrenheit). In many cases the end result is a very subtle, round aroma, (e.g. Jasmine CO2) particularly suitable for the flavour industry. However, the energy of these oils mostly does not show the same results as found in distilled products.
Hydrodiffusion is another variation of steam distillation. The steam is injected from the top of the still instead of being induced from the bottom. The distillation time is shorter and the process often allows for a better penetration of the steam into the plant material. Hydrodiffused oils sometimes tend to have a slightly subtler note.
Enfleurage could be compared to certain aspects employed in maceration, but is done in a slightly different way. Glass plates in a frame (called a chassis) are covered with highly purified and odorless vegetable or animal fat and the petals of the botanical matter that are being extracted are spread across it and pressed in. The flowers are normally freshly picked before so encased in their fatty bed. The petals remain in this greasy compound for a few days to allow the essence to disperse into the compound, after which the then depleted petals are removed and replaced with a fresh harvest of petals. This process is repeated until the greasy mix is saturated with the essence, and needs to be repeated a couple of times until saturation is achieved. When the mix has reached saturation point the flowers are removed and the enfleurage pomade - the fat and fragrant oil - then washed with alcohol to separate the extract from the remaining fat, which is then used to make soap. As soon as the alcohol evaporates from the mixture you are left with the essential oils. This is a very labor-intensive way of extraction, and needless to say a very costly way to obtain essential oil and is nowadays only sometimes used to extract essential oil from tuberoses and jasmine.
METHODS OF APPLICATION
Massage is possibly the oldest and easiest method of holistic treatments. Muscular tension and stress can be alleviated by massage. Use a Marie Laveau blend and apply to affected area. In facial use, apply gently to face and neck area and massage into the skin in a circular motion.
The practice of bathing in aromatic baths to relax and revitalise has been used since the days of antiquity. Add 1-2 capfuls of Marie Laveau prepared blend or simply add a few drops of the appropriate Oshadhi synergy or pure essential oils to the bath water, gently disperse the oils through the water, immerse and feel the benefits right away.
For skin care or the relief of muscular aches, sport injuries or menstrual pains. Add a few drops of appropriate essential oils to about 200mls of hot or cold water, depending on the condition. Immerse compress cloth, wring out excess fluid, and lay over affected area for approximately 15 minutes.
Create the perfect ambience in your home or workplace by using Aromatic Electric vaporizers with 6-15 drops (depending on conditions) of Oshadhi synergies.
Add 4-8 drops of appropriate essential oils to a bowl of steaming water. Then place a towel over the head and the bowl. Inhale vapours for a few minutes. The eyes should be shut during inhalation. Steam inhalations are a traditional home remedy to ease congestion in the respiratory passage caused by colds, coughs, catarrh and sinusitis.
PURITY, ADULTERATION & TESTING
Essential oils vary markedly in their quality.
Here are some of the factors that affect essential oil quality:
Therapeutic or Industrial Use?
Only about 5% of the total global production of essential oils is ultimately destined for therapeutic use. Most essential oil production is bound for the fragrance or flavour industries, washing powder, etc, and (let's be clear about this) they have less exacting standards of purity. This means that if the oil is sourced from a middleman who supplies these industries, it is quite unlikely that the oil will be of therapeutic quality.
Industrial production generally attempts to obtain a specific standardized re-produceable note of fragrance, or an identical active ingredient. These oils will generally not appear in price lists under a specific botanical name. The reason for this is that those oils are produced either from different species of lesser value, from mixed crops or from mixing with synthetic components.
For therapeutic use we want to have a pure, clean unadulterated oil with a good energy value and a clear fragrance. The more exact the description of the essential oil, the less risky it is for the buyer to purchase an unwanted product. A company who can inform its customers about its oils shows that it is better connected to the plant source and therefore the chances of adulteration are minimized.
For the sake of transparency and clarity, we label our Oshadhi essential oils with their:
- exact botanical name
- country of origin
- part of plant used for distillation
- mode of cultivation
- major biochemical compounds.
Sourcing Direct from the Grower
In order to ensure the above points are adhered to, a good aromatherapy company has no choice other than to source essential oils direct from the grower/supplier, and to build a close relationship with those farmers who cultivate healing plants to the highest standards. Through this personal contact we know that they practise methods of cultivation which are in accordance with the natural laws of the land, and that they utilize methods of distillation which do not damage the pure essences from the plants.
Requirements for Therapeutic Use
All oils for therapeutic use should be unadulterated 100% pure natural products. This means no chemical additives; no diluting with alcohol or thinning with other oils should occur, unless necessary for certain purposes (i.e. access to the product because too solid, or specifically for the creation of new products, blends, etc.) Essential oils should not be peroxidized, decolorized, nor deturpenated.
The most common methods of adulterating essential oils are:
- Dilution with vegetable carrier oils, alcohol and synthetic oils (which are cheaper).
- Blending with cheaper oils of the same plant but from another country. For example: Bourbon Geranium with Geranium from China; Moroccan Myrtle with Myrtle from the Balkans; Siberian Fir with Chinese Fir, etc.
- Mixing with cheaper essentials oils of the same plant but extracted from a different part of the plant. For example: Clove bud with Clove leaves; Cinnamon bark with Cinnamon leaf; Angelica root with Angelica leaf...
- Dilution with cheaper essential oils of plants of similiar species. For example: Thyme (thymus vulgaris) with wild Thyme (thymus mastichina); Lavender with Lavandin; Ceylon cinnamon with Chinese Cassia;
- Adulteration with cheaper essential oils of different plants or of species with a similiar name. For example: East Indian with so called 'West Indian Sandalwood' (Amyris); Lemongrass with Litsea; Patchouli with Eucalyptus; Verbena with Lemongrass; Frankincense with turpentine; Rosewood with Ho oil; Melissa with "Indian Melissa" (Lemongrass etc.); Clary sage with Lavender; Mandarin with Orange; The so called 'white' Thyme with turpentine...
- Mixing with isolated natural or (semi-) synthetic compounds. For example: Lemon with citral and Orange-terpenes; Peppermint with menthol; Eucalyptus with cineol; Geranium with geraniol or citronellol; Patchouli with clove bud terpenes; Rosemary with camphor; Thyme with thymol or carvacrol; Cardamon with terpenyl acetate; Elemi with Orange terpenes; Clary sage with lynalyl acetate or synthetic linalool; Clove bud with eugenol...
TESTING FOR PURITY
WHY IS ORGANIC SO IMPORTANT
Testing for purity
It is important to perform careful laboratory testing for purity using gas chromatography and - if necessary - mass spectrography. This guarantees that all our essential oils are 100% pure. Comprehensive analyses and quality controls, supported by on-going state-of-the-art laboratory tests, are prerequisites in the selection of the Oshadhi products. This includes tests such as:
- Optical rotation
- Gas chromatography analysis
And, if necessary, mass spectrography
HAZARDS OF CHEMICAL FARMING
Malte Hozzel, who has created the Oshadhi range of oils, writes about his research into the use of pesticides and herbicides on medicinal plants:
'Plants are known to be extremely sensitive to the toxic substances which are used to 'protect' them, or to increase their yield. These toxins can result in subtle changes right down to the genetic structure within the plant, giving rise to devitalized plants with a weakened defence system.
'The use of chemicals in medicinal plant farming may not only significantly reduce the number of years that a perennial such as lavender will survive, but it also contradicts the very purpose of committing oneself to natural health.
'In many of the less developed countries, few or no regulatory measures are being taken to control the use of chemicals in farming. Yet there are always some plants that grow naturally and wild. For example, many of the ylang ylang trees in the Comoron Islands grow wild in the jungle and do not undergo any unnatural influences. Other examples are the Ravintsara trees in Madagascar, the Spikenard (Jatamansi) in Nepal, and the Cassia trees in Vietnam. Fortunately, many farmers in the developing countries cannot afford the expensive chemicals, even though they may have heard of them.
'While the use of these chemicals does produce larger plants and greater yields in the short run, one has also to bear in mind the long-term effects on the soil, the plant itself and the health of human beings.'