Wintergreen Oil comes from the leaf extract of an evergreen plant called Gaultheria procumbens. If you’re from North America, you probably know how popular and valued this plant is in the field of herbal medicine. Hundreds of years ago, North Americans already used Wintergreen Oil as a treatment for respiratory illnesses, fatigue, and body pain.
Nevertheless, sick people aren’t the only ones using Wintergreen Oil to improve their condition. Significant findings show reports of athletes who have been using Wintergreen Oil to maintain their sharp focus and boost their energy during trainings and actual matches. Truly, you can be a stronger, healthier person by using this wonder oil. It’s simply a few drops away!
Wintergreen is also known as gaultheria oil, checkerberry, and eastern teaberry. It has leaves that are glossy and green all year round. Some birds and animals are delighted to feed on its enticing edible red berries—the reason for the plant’s other well-known names.
You’ll notice that its leaves are naturally odorless and tasteless. Leaves undergo extraction after which Wintergreen Oil is produced. During the process, its sweet, pungent aroma similar to peppermint oil develops as well. This happens through the enzymes’ production of methyl salicylate, which causes the essential oil’s minty scent.
Wintergreen Oil Benefits
These are Wintergreen Oil’s general benefits:
- Effective pain relief
- Treats colds and flu
- Promotes proper digestion
- Reduces food cravings
- Helps excrete excess water from the body
- Natural remedy for nausea
- Improves skin and hair health
- Boosts energy and improves focus
- Enhances flavors and aroma of food and beverages
- Good for personal hygiene
- Useful ingredient for household products
Known as a powerful antioxidant, astringent, anti-arthritic, antiseptic, antibacterial, and analgesic, Wintergreen Oil has become an important ingredient in ointments, vapor rub, liniments, detox baths, beverages, beauty products, hygienic solutions, and household products.
Wintergreen Oil Uses
- Wintergreen Oil as Pain Reliever. Wintergreen Oil works as an excellent pain relief for conditions such as headache, lower back pain, arthritis and rheumatism. It reduces inflammation around aching body parts. Its healing properties perform a great job at ditching the pain away, allowing patients to do their normal activities for the day.
To use it as a pain reliever, massage a few drops of Wintergreen Oil on the painful body areas. You can also mix it with lavender oil and add several drops of the mixture to a warm detox bath.
- Wintergreen Oil as a Natural Remedy for Colds, Flu, and other Respiratory Ailments. This essential oil can be used as vapor rub, allowing its aroma to completely penetrate the respiratory system. It clears air passageways from congestion and inflammation, allowing you to breathe easily.
It is suggested to mix Wintergreen Oil with coconut oil and rub several drops of the mixture to chest and upper back to ease flu-related symptoms as well as other respiratory problems.
- Wintergreen Oil as an Aid for Improving Digestive Functions. Wintergreen Oil enhances the production of some stomach acid and juices necessary for healthy digestion.
- Wintergreen Oil as a Natural Diuretic. When the body retains excess water, much more than what it actually needs, the usual consequence is bloating. You need to excrete this excess water in urine-form. The good news is, Wintergreen Oil can solve this problem naturally.
- Wintergreen Oil as a Natural Nausea Remedy. Its ability to control muscle spasm makes Wintergreen Oil a great remedy for nausea. You can apply your own homemade Wintergreen Oil on your abdomen, stomach, and lower back to ease the symptom.
- Wintergreen Oil as Skin and Hair Treatment. When added to a carrier oil such as coconut or jojoba oil, Wintergreen Oil can be used as a treatment to certain skin problems. You may also add one to two drops to your facial wash to fight off acne-causing germs on your skin. It effectively clears blemishes and improves skin complexion.
To remove dandruff, and other despicable matter from your scalp, massage several drops of Wintergreen Oil through your hair. This won’t only cleanse your scalp, it will also keep your hair smelling fresh all day.
- Wintergreen Oil as Energizer. It has the ability to boost stamina and respiratory endurance. It helps you stay alert and focused on your current activity. To achieve these results, inhale the soothing aroma of Wintergreen Oil either directly from the bottle or through a diffuser.
- Wintergreen Oil as Flavor Enhancer. Several food and beverages with minty taste and aroma rely on wintergreen’s capacity as an effective flavor enhancer. It is used in teas, candies, smoothies, and in some dishes.
- Wintergreen Oil as DIY Toothpaste and Mouthwash. Who wouldn’t wish for a cool, fresh breath that lasts long? It’s easy when you add a few drops of Wintergreen Oil to your DIY toothpaste or mix one to two drops of it with water to serve as your mouthwash. This solution kills germs and bacteria in your mouth, giving you healthier gums and teeth, plus lasting fresh breath.
Gargling with Wintergreen Oil is also beneficial for people who hope to control their food cravings. If you have problems with excess weight and eating disorders, this could be the solution for you.
- Wintergreen Oil as Useful Ingredient for Household Products. Because of its natural antiseptic and antibacterial properties, Wintergreen Oil works as an effective house cleaning agent that removes grime, molds, and displeasing odors in the kitchen and bathroom.
Wintergreen Oil Side Effects
- Sensitive Skin. For people with sensitive skin, Wintergreen Oil may cause excessive redness, blistering, and burning sensation.
- Methyl Salicylate Poisoning. Methyl salicylate is highly toxic. Research says that one teaspoon of Wintergreen Oil that is ingested could almost mean aspirin-overdose. It may even cause severe liver and kidney damage.
- Allergic Reactions. People allergic to aspirin may as well avoid Wintergreen Oil. You can test a drop of Wintergreen Oil on a small part of your skin to check any allergic reaction.
How to Use Wintergreen Oil
- Spread the fresh, soothing aroma of Wintergreen Oil around your home by using a diffuser or vaporizer. Mix a few drops with lavender oil for a warm and relaxing detox bath.
- Add one to two drops of Wintergreen Oil to a carrier oil such as coconut or jojoba before using it on your skin.
How to Make Wintergreen Oil
Wintergreen Oil is produced through steam distillation. First, leaves are macerated in warm water. This enables enzymes to produce methyl salicylate. Steam distillation is used to separate methyl salicylate from the other compounds and substances present in the leaves.
Wintergreen Oil Recipe
It’s not recommended to make your own Wintergreen Oil at home because of possible risks that come along with methyl salicylate contact. Instead, you can buy one that has been already diluted with safe carrier oils.
Here’s a recipe though on how to make your own Wintergreen Oil muscle rub for body pain:
- Pour ½ cup of coconut oil and ¼ cup of grated beeswax in a jar.
- Add water into a saucepan, about two inches in height. Then, turn on medium heat.
- Place the jar into the saucepan. Stir the mixture inside to combine completely.
- Add 2 teaspoons of cayenne powder and 2 teaspoons of garlic or turmeric powder into the jar. Mix well.
- Turn off heat. Allow the mixture to cool down a bit. Then, add 15 drops of Wintergreen Oil and another 15 drops of lavender essential oil. Stir the mixture to combine ingredients thoroughly.
And, that’s it! You now have your very own homemade Wintergreen Oil muscle rub. Use it as a relief for body aches, colds, or flu symptoms.
Where to Buy Wintergreen Oil
There are many brands selling Wintergreen Oil online or at the local drugstores. When choosing one, make sure that the product is 100% pure, organic, and therapeutic grade. That’s the only way you can reap the most benefits of essential oils. Pay attention to details such as color and scent.
Pure Wintergreen Oil is characterized by its pure yellow or pinkish yellow color. Its scent is sweet and fresh, pungent, yet soothing. Be wary of products that emit unpleasant smell.
One of the best brands that sell Wintergreen Oil is Young Living.
More Information on Wintergreen Oil
- Keep Wintergreen Oil away from babies, toddlers, and pets as it can be highly toxic when ingested.
- Pregnant and lactating mothers should avoid using it.
- Wintergreen Oil may interact with medications for asthma, chronic pain, and other health conditions. Consult your doctor before using it.