If you always thought that the name vanilla was a proprietary property of all those industries producing mouth watering ice creams, chocolates, cakes, pastries, custards, biscuits, confectionaries and soft drinks, and there could not be a better use of it, then you can’t be more wrong. The essential oil of vanilla is extracted by solvent extraction of a resinous substance obtained from fermented vanilla beans. These beans grow in vanilla plants, a creeper that grows mainly in Mexico and neighboring countries and bears a scientific name Vanilla Planifolia. Most of the flavors with a ‘vanilla’ tag on them are not derived from original vanilla at all; they are mostly synthesized from hydrocarbons!
Vanilla has been a critical ingredient in the food/beverage industry, as well as pharmaceutical and wellness too. Below are a list of the wonders that is vanilla.
- Antioxidant. This property alone can take care of most of your problems. Oxidation is one of the biggest causes behind most of our troubles and diseases. It is directly and indirectly responsible for a number of diseases caused by organic malfunctions and infections. Oxidizers or free-radicals cause oxidation of the living cells and tissues and burn them to death. Gradually, this results in weakening of the immunity, loss of memory, organic and nervous malfunctioning, gradual loss of vision & hearing, mental instability, macular degeneration and many more. The anti oxidant property of vanilla essential oil neutralizes these free radicals and protects the body from wears and tears, infections and even some forms of cancer, such as those of prostrate and colon. It also repairs the damages already done to the body.
- Febrifuge. The vanilla oil can effectively reduce fever by fighting infections due to presence of components like Eugenol and Vanillin Hydroxybenzaldehyde in it. Being a sedative, it also reduces inflammation due to fever which also contributes to reducing fever.
- Antidepressant. You were sitting alone, depressed. Then somebody brings you a vanilla ice cream or a vanilla flavored drink, you have that and lo! The depression is gone! You start feeling pleased, satisfied and get into mood. This is one of the biggest advantages of the aromatic vanilla. The flavor alone is so pleasingly sweet and soothing. Vanillin Hydroxybenzaldehyde, a component of vanilla essential oil is an effective anti-depressant and mood uplifter.
- Relaxing: This oil has a relaxing and calming effect on the brain and the nerves, and provides relief from anxiety, anger and restlessness.