Essential oils have been used for centuries as a stimulant, sedative and treatment for various medical conditions. Many studies have been conducted on essential oils and the effects of the scent on the brain and other systems in the body including stress relief.
A new study from Taiwan reports these oils have a beneficial effect on heart rate and blood pressure after short-term exposure and may result in reducing the risks for cardiovascular disease. This new study examined the effects of essential oil and blood pressure among spa workers.
One hundred young, healthy non-smoking spa workers taking part in the study visited the study centre on three occasions (about once a week), when each volunteer was exposed to vapors of essential oils released from an ultrasonic ionizer for two hours. During this time and on each visit three repeated measurements — resting heart rate, systolic blood pressure (SBP), and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) — were taken from each spa worker in the study room, a small space measuring 4 meters in height by 3.5 m in length and 3.2 m in width. Before each participant entered the study room, 100% pure bergamot essential oil was vaporized for 1 hour.
Essential oils are volatile organic compounds (VOCs) composed of hundreds of aromatic chemicals, and VOC levels in the room were also measured throughout the study period.
After researchers had adjusted for age, gender, BMI and visit order, the results had showed for the times between 15 and 30 minutes after start of exposure the VOC level was significantly associated with reduced 15-min mean BP and HR. These associations were statistically significant. For example, after 45 minutes exposure 15-minute SBP had reduced by a mean of 2.10 mmHg and heart rate by 2.21 beats per minute.
In their conclusion, researchers had written that exposure to essential oil for 1 hour was found to be an effective method of relaxation, as indicated by decreases in the HR and BP.
In another study in 2010, Seoul St. Mary’s Hospital, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea, had examined the effectiveness of aromatherapy on blood pressure, heart rate variability, aortic pulse wave velocity and the aortic augmentation index of essential hypertensive patients. Their results revealed that aromatherapy was effective in lowering systolic blood pressure and sympathetic nerve system activity.
With these benefits, it’s no wonder why our Thai Aromatherapy massage is sort after!