There are many claims made in the essential oil industry, and not all of them are backed up by a sufficient amount of peer-reviewed research. Thus, the purpose of this thesis project was to sort through the claims made in the essential oil industry and present an evidence-supported review of the health benefits of lavender, peppermint, and citrus essential oils. Interviews were conducted to compare the literature findings to the knowledge and experiences of individuals using essential oils in their daily lives. Lavender essential oil was shown to improve agitated behavior, fatigue, cardiovascular parameters, sleep quality, anxiety, PONV, and quality of life. Peppermint essential oil was shown to improve cognitive performance, reduce mental fatigue, and reduce PONV and antiemetic drug requirements. Finally, Citrus aurantium can improve anxiety, mental symptoms of PMS, and quality of life, and Citrus sinensis can reduce postoperative abdominal pain. All of these results were achieved in medical settings with low costs, little to no reported side effects, and generally high participant satisfaction with each intervention. By comparing the literature findings to the information collected from interviews with current essential oil users, it can safely be assumed that essential oil practice and research align in many relevant cases. Most notably, lavender essential oil aids in sleep quality and anxiety disorders and peppermint essential oil aids with cognitive function and gastrointestinal concerns.
- An Evidence Based Review of the Top Three Essential Oils Used In Complementary Healthcare: Lavender, Peppermint, and Citrus