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Lime, one of the most affordable essential oils, is known for its fresh, energizing, mood-lifting, and cheerful aroma. In fact, cold-pressed lime essential oil is among the two most aromatically potent citrus oils, the other being Neroli. It’s a favorite among blenders because a little amount goes a long way in giving the resulting blend a sweet, fruity scent.
For years, lime essential oil has been used in aromatherapy to relieve irritation, worry, stress, and depression. When inhaled, the vapors have a cleansing effect on the mind, body, and spirit.
Lime essential oil in history
The lime tree is a short, bushy and evergreen plant belonging to the citrus family. Growing to a maximum height of 13 feet, it’s much smaller than orange or grapefruit trees. Its leaves are dark-green, and in the summer, white blossoms emerge, which later turn into green oval fruits.
In history, the lime tree traces its roots in Asia, from where it was introduced in Europe by the Moors. In the 19th century, lime fruits were a common commodity among sailors, as ship crews depended on the lime juice’s high Vitamin C content to ward off scurvy during long journeys.
Today, lime grows in warm climates around the world and is extensively cultivated in Africa, Italy, Central America, and the West Indies. There are two primary types of lime trees: Mexican (Key or West Indian Lime) and Persian (Tahitian or Bearss Lime)
Lime essential oil is extracted by compressing fresh fruit rinds or steam distilling dried peels. Cold-compressed oil is the most preferred among herbal practitioners and therapists because its chemical structure is left unaltered by heat.
Freshly extracted lime oil is light green with a hint of orange or yellow and has a sweet, citrusy and slightly tart aroma.
Lime oil uses
The lime fruit is famous for its many health benefits. The common benefits of lime essential oil include:
Antiseptic and Antiviral
The active antiseptic properties of lime essential oil can be used to treat fresh wounds, cuts, burns and other external injuries. When applied to an affected area, lime works fast to kill infectious microbes and promote rapid healing.
Lime oil can also be ingested in prescribed doses to treat infections of the mouth, throat, stomach, intestines, and the urinary system. It even possesses antiviral strengths, which make it useful in curing viral infections, such as flu, mumps, coughs, colds, and measles.
Astringent and Hemostatic
Lime essential oil is praised for its astringent characteristics. The use of lime results in the beneficial contraction of loose tissues. For instance, lime oil in mouthwashes and toothpaste helps to strengthen gums and prevent teeth from falling out. Similarly, lime tightens muscles, giving them a firm, fit and youthful feel.
The astringent and hemostatic effects of lime oil can also be used as first aid to stop hemorrhaging and reduce internal bleeding by inducing the contraction of blood vessels.
Lime is known to inspire proper body functioning by toning up muscles, tissues, and the skin, as well as the respiratory, circulatory, nervous, digestive, excretory, and immune systems.
The oil restores the health and strength of weak organs and systems throughout the body and is thus very beneficial to patients recovering from long bouts of illness or injury.
When applied to muscles, tendons, and joints, lime oil also alleviates the inflammation and pain that results from applying too much pressure to these areas and, therefore, inhibits the development of complications like rheumatism and arthritis.
Promotes healthy skin and hair
Thanks to its antibacterial properties, applying a few drops of diluted lime oil on the skin washes out harmful impurities and prevents conditions like acne, pox, eczema and cellulitis.
Lime essential oil is also mixed with shampoos and hair treatment products to moisturize the scalp, avoid dandruff and bring life to dull crinkly or oily hair.
Lime essential oil is often diffused with a vaporizer to relieve stress, exhaustion, anxiety and depression. Its aromatic effect is uplifting to the mind and stimulating to the senses; improving memory, acuteness, and concentration.
The vapors of lime oil can also be inhaled directly, in moderation, where they go directly to the brain to calm the nerves, rest the body, and induce peaceful sleep.
As a disinfectant, lime essential oil can protect food from getting spoiled through infection by microbes. It can also cure microbial infection in the kidneys, genitals, urinary tract, and the colon.
Lime essential oil normally serves as an appetizer. It activates the secretion of digestive juices in the stomach thus increasing your hunger and appetite.
Similar to other citrus oils, lime oil is considered safe for most skin types. It can also be safely inhaled or added to food in small amounts. However, experts strongly advise against using the oil recklessly. For instance, before applying to the skin, it’s important to do a patch test to ensure you’re not allergic to any of lime’s chemical ingredients.
Lime essential oil is said to be non-toxic, but ingestion should only be done under the supervision of a physician, who will prescribe the proper dosage depending on your body and your condition.
Lime oil can cause irritation to the eyes, the mucous membrane and sensitive skin. It should only be used when diluted with a favorable carrier oil, such as Jojoba or Coconut.
Little is known about the effects of using lime oil during pregnancy and breastfeeding. You should, therefore, seek professional advice before making any habitual commitments.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your physician before using this product.