For many people, the months of winter are nothing short of magical. Between the peaceful white snow, the joyous holidays and the opportunities to cuddle up beneath cozy blankets on chilly evenings, it seems like wintertime is all about making memories with your loved ones.
Of course, winter comes with some drawbacks as well. Not everyone appreciates the cold, dry weather that can feel miserable and wreak havoc on the skin. Winter is also the time in which countless people fall prey to viruses. Also, more and more studies have found a strong link between the dark, cold days of winter and clinical depression.
If you’re not winter’s biggest fan, this article is for you. You’ll discover that a wide array of essential oils can tackle the biggest headaches that come with the cold winter months. From alleviating seasonal depression to protecting your skin against harsh, dry winds, it seems like there’s nothing that essential oils can’t do.
The Best Essential Oils for Winter
1. Beat Seasonal Depression Symptoms Naturally with Grapefruit Essential Oil
It’s no surprise that so many people suffer from depression during the winter months. Between the lack of sunshine, the oppressive cold and the potentially-overwhelming holidays, it can be challenging to wake up each day with a smile on your face as the season drags on.
If you often find yourself catching the winter blues, grapefruit essential oil can help. Unlike popular antidepressant medications that can cause serious side effects over time, grapefruit oil can treat the symptoms of depression safely and naturally. The oil acts as a stimulant, improving one’s overall state of mind while boosting one’s energy levels.
In fact, studies have proven that simply inhaling grapefruit essential oil can dramatically decrease symptoms of depression. One study found that menopausal women who were experiencing depression as a result of hormonal changes found fast and significant relief when administered grapefruit essential oil via inhalation (source).
If you own an oil diffuser, you can have the mood-boosting chemical compounds of grapefruit essential oil running through your home all day long. Alternatively, you can add a few drops to your morning bath and be good to go for the rest of the day.
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2. Boost Your Immune System with Lemon Essential Oil and Stop Catching Colds
When you catch a virus, your doctor probably tells you to load up on orange juice. This advice isn’t just about soothing your throat with refreshing fruit flavor. Orange juice contains a high level of vitamin C, giving your immune system exactly what it needs to fight off the infection.
The problem with commercial orange juice is that it also contains an extraordinary amount of sugar. When sugar is consumed in excessive levels, it can cause inflammation. This widespread inflammation can be very taxing on the immune system, preventing it from doing important things like fighting off viruses.
If you feel a cold coming on, grab some lemon essential oil instead. The oil’s high level of vitamin C will give your immune system the boost that it needs without overloading the body with inflammation-causing sugar. Just a couple of drops of lemon essential oil each day will help your body fight off that awful virus. In fact, consuming lemon essential oil each day will prevent your body from a wide array of infections that we associate with the winter months (source).
Lemon essential oil tastes great, too! Just two drops in a glass of water is reminiscent of refreshing, zesty lemonade.
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3. Keep Your Skin and Hair Moisturized on the Driest Days of Winter with Rosemary Essential Oil
If you spend any amount of time outdoors during the cold and dry winter days, you know that your skin and hair suffer tremendously when exposed to these brutal conditions. The dryness of the air literally robs your hair and skin of moisture. Meanwhile, those harsh and cold winds can irritate your face and delicate hair follicles.
Instead of spending tons of money on fancy hair and skincare products, grab a bottle of rosemary essential oil. This inexpensive essential oil is derived from rosemary, an herb that is renowned for its hydrating properties. In fact, many moisturizers and hair conditioners contain this herb because of its ability to beat dryness.
A few drops of rosemary essential oil can be combined with your favorite moisturizing oil like coconut oil or argan oil in order to act as a multi-tasking product for both hair and skin. This oil can be liberally massaged into the face and scalp to prevent dryness.
Rosemary essential oil is also packed with inflammation-busting chemical compounds. Many people have inflammatory conditions that cause the skin to become dry and flaky. Most often, the cold winter months result in endless flare-ups that can cause the skin and scalp to become covered in unsightly patches of dead skin. Rosemary essential oil’s potent anti-inflammatory properties make it the perfect topical treatment for those who suffer from conditions such as psoriasis, eczema and dandruff (source).
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4. Shed that Embarrassing Holiday Weight Safely and Permanently with Cinnamon Essential Oil
It’s perfectly fine to indulge a little more during the holiday season. In fact, most people gain a few pounds during the month of December. Between countless holiday parties, family gatherings and tasty gifts received from loved ones, we all find ourselves eating rich and sugary foods way more frequently than usual.
If you want to get rid of that holiday weight, cinnamon essential oil is your best friend. This oil helps you lose weight in a completely safe and effective way. Unlike diet pills that put you at risk of heart disease and fad diets that often leave you feeling unsatisfied, cinnamon essential oil actually changes the way that the body breaks down sugar and fat without any side effects.
When ingested in small quantities, cinnamon essential oil slows down the rate at which sugar gets released into the blood. In other words, cinnamon essential oil triggers the production of the breakdown of sugar in the body, helping it leave your body more quickly (source).
Cinnamon essential oil has also been found to increase the metabolism and reduce cravings. In fact, just holding a bottle of cinnamon essential up to your nose can reduce your craving for sweets instantly.
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5. Take Care of Annoying Congestion and Throat Irritation within Seconds by Inhaling Peppermint Essential Oil
If you’re feeling congested, there’s a good chance that you rely on that vapor rub that is massaged into the skin of the chest. This popular topical treatment possesses a seemingly-miraculous ability to instantly open up the airways while thinning phlegm and mucus.
The secret behind that product’s ability to eliminate congestion is menthol. Derived from mint, menthol is a powerful chemical compound that thins mucus and phlegm as soon as it is inhaled. If you’re dealing with congestion during the winter months, try reaching for some peppermint essential oil instead of that commercial rub from the drugstore.
While that product is full of harsh chemicals that can irritate the skin, peppermint oil contains nothing but the pure concentrated oil that is derived from peppermint leaves.
Peppermint essential oil’s fast-acting abilities have everything to do with the rate at which menthol permeates tissue. Inhaling the oil allows this potent chemical compound to reach the affected areas instantly. Therefore, you can simply hold a bottle of peppermint oil up to your nose whenever you feel congested and feel it working immediately (source).
Additionally, peppermint essential oil has analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, giving it the ability to soothe a sore throat like nothing else. The analgesic properties of menthol have a cooling and numbing effect on the irritated tissue of the throat. Meanwhile, the anti-inflammatory properties of the oil reduce swelling and tenderness.
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6. Say Goodbye to Holiday Stress with the Calming Effects of Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender essential oil’s powerful effects on stress are legendary. The oil has been studied extensively for its ability to safely and naturally slow down the nervous system while uplifting the mood. Therefore, this oil is the perfect antidote to that holiday-related stress that comes from the relentless hustle and bustle of the season (source).
Because lavender oil can calm stress significantly when inhaled through the nose, you don’t have to worry about any of the side effects that we associate with popular sedative medications. You can’t overdose or become physically dependent on lavender. Amazingly, just inhaling the oil for a couple of seconds can slow down your thoughts and your heart rate. You can also pour a couple of drops into your daily bath to practice self-care while enjoying the oil’s anti-stress abilities.
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Thanks to the amazing power of essential oils, you’ll be able to get through the winter season unscathed. Whether you want to treat a cold or beat that awful depression that occurs during the cold months, there’s an essential oil that will leave you feeling healthy and refreshed no matter how brutal the weather is outside.