“Holy wood” or Palo santo also called Bursera graveolens is the plant that contains a potent essential oil popular for fighting inflammation and stimulating the immune system. This tree species is found in the Ecuadorian tropical forest, Peruvian Yucatan Peninsula and Mexico. It is the same tree species as myrrh and frankincense, which also produce anti-oxidant rich oils used all over the world.
The dried wood of the palo santo is burned and the collected oil is used by shamans and in fold medicines. It is believed that the tree has spiritual uses. The wood is burned for incense and as a mosquito repellant because of its volatile oils and aromatic resins.
In the modern world, the trees are propagated so that the wood is collected to produce the bottled oil by steam distillation. It is used for mental health treatments and offers several benefits in fighting illness and enhancing immunity.
The oil has a rich content of terpenes or phytochemicals and antioxidants, a-terpineol and limonene, its concentrate is efficient for the relief of stomach aches, fights free radicals, fights stress, reduces pain caused by arthritis and the treatment of other medical issues. Recently, it has gained popularity as a natural treatment for inflammatory diseases caused by cancer.
The fruit also possess some therapeutic value being high in lipids. It emits an aroma akin to fennel or anise that is why it’s a favorite natural cleansing product and odor diffuser used in most homes. It also has a note of lemon, mint and pine scent being a tree related to the citrus family. It shares similar emotional stabilizing benefits and can be used as an alternative for myrrh oil and frankincense oil.
Palo Santo Essential Oil Benefits
Palo Santo essential oil benefits include:
- Fights cancer
- Fights infection
- Relieves inflammation
- Relieves muscular pains
- Stimulates the immune system
- Supports a healthy nervous system
Palo Santo Essential Oil Uses
- Palo Santo Essential Oil as Immune Enhancer and Detoxifier. The oil supports the immune system, also in removing inflammatory responses to pollution, unhealthy diet, illness and stress. Use several drops in hot water as a detoxifying agent and drink like herbal tea. It calms the nerves and you recover quickly from emotional pain, chronic fatigue and illness.
- Palo Santo Essential Oil as Relaxant and de-stressor. Frankincense and Palo Santo Essential Oils are both used for spiritual and emotional support because they function as organic anxiety treatments. Once inhaled, it travels directly thru the nose to the brain and relaxes the body and reduces anxiety, panic and insomnia. Apply drops of the oil mixed with carrier oil to the head, chest, neck or back to relax, unwind and sleep easily. Combine it with bergamot oil, frankincense and lavender oil.
- Palo Santo Essential Oil as Headache Treatment. The oil combats migraines, stress related moods or headaches, increases blood flow and lowers inflammation to remove perceived pain. Mix drops of oil in water. Vaporize n a diffuser when the headaches attack. Rub some Palo Santo Essential Oil mixed with coconut oil on your neck and temples.
- Palo Santo Essential Oil as Flu or Cold Treatment. The oil is popular in fighting viruses and infections that lead to flu or colds. It improves circulation and recharges energy levels making you better fast and stops feelings of nausea, congestion and dizziness. Apply drops of the oil on your chest around the heart and add to your bath water to beat flu or colds.
How to Utilize Palo Santo Essential Oil
- In aromatherapy. Use the oil in a diffuser or inhale from the container. You can light the dried woodchips by using a lighter, candle or match. Hold the lighted wood cones or sticks in an angle of 45 degrees pointing downwards to the flame. Let it burn for 30 seconds or 1 minute before blowing it out. You can place on metal that is non-flammable, clay or glass bowl to diffuse the home.
- As a topical application. Dilute the oil with carrier oil such as coconut oil on a ratio of 1:1 before you apply to the skin. It is often mixed as a cosmetic ingredient with the INCI label “bursera graveolens wood oil”. Do a patch test before using to avoid skin irritation.
- As internal use. FDA recognizes the oil as safe for consumption but only recommend premium oil brands. Search for 100% pure medical oil and add to a drop of water or use as diet supplement by adding to smoothie or with honey.
- As a homemade cleansing and beauty product. Palo Santo Essential Oil blends with black pepper, clary sage, cedarwood, cypress, frankincense, douglas fir, lemon balm, rose, myrrh, sandalwood and Vetiver. It can be used in making a variety of homemade soaps, lotions, cleansing products and incense.
How to Make Palo Santo Essential oil
Dead trees that have fallen to the ground for at least two years are the only ones you can harvest to produce the oil. When the dead wood matures, the resin goes to the core and develops a powerful and unique chemistry. The heartwood is boiled and then distilled in order to produce the oil. The steam distillation process separates the essence of the Palo Santo resin, leaving only the essential oil.
Palo Santo Essential Oil Recipe
Natural skin lotion
This organic lotion hydrates skin and gives the essential nutrients and vitamins to tone, heal, lift and protect your skin while covering it in a calming scent.
90 minutes Preparation Time
- Olive oil ¼ cup
- Coconut oil ¼ cup
- Beeswax ¼ cup
- Vitamin E 2 TBSP
- Shea butter ¼ cup
- Frankincense oil 20 drops
- Myrrh oil 10 drops
- Glass bottles
- Palo santo oil 10 drops
- In a glass bowl, combine olive oil, shea butter and beeswax.
- Place the bowl in a saucepan filled with water. The stove must be heated to medium. Blend all the ingredients together.
- Once it has been mixed, put the bowl in the refrigerator for one hour until it becomes solid. Using a hand mixer or a regular mixer, blend the mixture to become fluffy and well whipped. Then add all the vitamin E including oils. Mix well.
- Fill the container with the mixture then store in a cool place.
Where to Buy Palo Santo Essential Oil
You can purchase Palo Santo Essential Oil on websites selling aromatherapy and essential oils as well as pharmacies and stores. Brands which have proven to be of high quality are Floracopeia and Young Living.
More Information on Palo Santo Essential Oil
- To produce 500 ml of oil, it will take 9 kilograms of palo santo sawdust.
- Palo Santo Essential Oil has been used traditionally to remove stress, improve creativity, fortify and deodorize the skin, and sooth tired, sore muscles.
- The real oil is quite hard to obtain and you need to but from a reliable seller.
- In Ecuador, it is illegal to cut down or remove the trees because they are protected. Even if the oil is collected from the dead trees or fallen limbs, you must get permission from the government. Therefore, its manufacture is very limited.
- Be cautious of companies that sell Palo Santo Essential Oil for a very low price in the internet. Check its genus species to know you are getting the genuine oil.