What is Bergamot Essential Oil?
Bergamot essential oil is a substance with fresh and citrus aroma obtained by cold pressing the fruit peel of Citrus bergamia, belonging to the Rutaceae family.
This peculiar fruit ripens from green to yellow and resembling a cross between an orange and a grapefruit, but in a pear-shape.
The aroma of bergamot oil is basically citrus, fruity and sweet, with a warm spicy floral quality, and is reminiscent of neroli oil as well as lavender oil. Its color ranges from green to greenish-yellow, and its consistency is viscous and watery.
Citrus Bergamia tree is native to South East Asia, but was introduced to Europe, particularly in Italy, although is also found in the Ivory Coast, Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria.
The name, is derived from the city Bergamo in Lombardy, Italy, where the oil was first sold.
Bergamot oil blends particularly well with other essential oils such as black pepper, nutmeg, clary sage, rosemary, cypress, vetiver, sandalwood, frankincense, ylang ylang, geranium, jasmine, mandarin and orange essential oil.
Active Principles of Bergamot Essential Oil
Bergamot essential oil has various chemical constituents and among its main components are: a-pinene, myrcene, limonene, a-bergaptene, b-bisabolene, linalool, linalyl acetate, nerol, neryl acetate, geraniol, geraniol acetate and a-terpineol.
Properties of Bergamot Essential Oil
The therapeutic properties of bergamot oil include: analgesic, antidepressant, antiseptic, antibiotic, anti-spasmodic, immunostimulant, expectorant, antibacterial, stomachic, cicatrisant, deodorant, digestive, febrifuge, vermifuge and vulnerary.
It also has anti-tumor, neuroprotective, anxiolytic, mood enhancer, antioxidant, antifungal, anti-dermatophyte, antimycoplasmal, and sedative, calming, and soothing effects.
Uses of Bergamot Essential Oil
Bergamot oil is one of the most widely used in the perfume and toiletry industry. Also, It is used to flavor Earl Gray tea. However, its therapeutic uses are extensive and simple to apply at home.
Below, you will find the most known uses offered by bergamot oil:
- Combats bad breath or halitosis
- Relieves colic
- Helps reduce fever
- Fights insomnia
- Stimulates the functioning of the immune system
- Natural remedy to eliminate lice
- Helps to expel gases and alleviates difficult digestion
- Reduces hemorrhoids
- Improves pruritus or itching
- Accelerates recovery from colds and flu
- Combats infections, especially in the urinary system such as cystitis
- Improves oral infections
- Treatment for skin with eczema or acne
- Helps to heal cases of seborrhoea
- Indicated for mental fatigue and stress
- Combats bad odors, ideal for adding to diffusers or homemade air fresheners
- Rebalances oily skin
Benefits of Bergamot Essential Oil
Natural treatment for Anxiety and depression
When you are looking for an oil to help with depression, SAD (Seasonal Affected Disorder) or just feeling a bit off, lacking in self-confidence or feeling shy, then consider bergamot oil. Apply a few drops on a dry cloth and let it act on your chest while you take a warm bath.
It is also recommended to inhale the vapor, which provides a pleasant sensation and stimulates positive energies for the mind and body, leaving behind feelings of tension or anxiety. Also, you can inhale directly from the bottle, whenever you feel the need for an injection of Good vibes.
There are studies that confirm these benefits, since they showed that the aroma effects of bergamot oil calm the nervous system, just as aromatherapy had always indicated.
Excellent ally for the skin
It also has superb antiseptic qualities that are useful for skin complaints, such as acne, oily skin conditions, eczema and psoriasis and can also be used on cold sores, chicken pox and wounds.
Eliminates digestive discomfort and tones internal organs
It has a powerful effect on stimulating the liver, stomach and spleen. It also promotes the proper functioning of the digestive system, relieving problems of flatulence, gas, colic, etc. By combining bergamot essential oil with chamomile and fennel oil, incredible results are achieved relieving these ailments. To do this, you should rub the mixture on the abdomen before sleeping.
Bergamot essential oil is an excellent natural product that helps healing scars. Its benefits are obtained through the use of soaps, creams and lotions.
It also removes skin spots and unwanted marks, even sunspots.
In addition, it stimulates better distribution of skin pigments, which helps to achieve a more even skin tone.
This oil is normally used to attenuate and prevent acne scars.
Helps to treat urinary infections
Bergamot essential oil has a superb antiseptic effect on urinary tract infections and inflammations such as cystitis.
Reduces body temperature
This oil helps lower body temperature caused by fever, when the body is trying to fight an infection.
Eliminates intestinal parasites
Although it is more common in children, intestinal parasites can lead to malnutrition. Bergamot oil helps eliminate these worms naturally.
Helps reduce cavities
Bergamot oil can help eliminate harmful bacteria that appear on the teeth causing cavities. To obtain this benefit, gargle with warm water for two minutes before brushing the teeth.
Relieves symptoms of some types of pain
Bergamot essential oil is ideal for relieving certain types of pain, especially muscle pain, stomach pain and headache. You can even replace conventional medications with bergamot oil, since in addition to relieving pain, it will serve to maintain a toned and healthy balanced body.
It can be used as a deodorant
Bergamot oil can be used as a natural deodorant, since it can eliminate all kinds of unwanted odor, while depigmenting dark armpits. In addition, it is an excellent alternative to cosmetics deodorants and antiperspirants, which often cause us more harm than benefits.
Protection against tetanus
This disease is acquired due to careless or accidental exposure to oxidation and other toxic materials, through open skin wound. Typically, the toxin causes some parts of the body to become poisoned, until it is unable to recover.
Bergamot oil can help eliminate mucus and phlegm easily, so as to obtain a faster recovery from colds, flu, bronchitis or any respiratory condition, without experiencing so much discomfort in the process.
Regulates and balances hormones
Bergamot oil can be effective in the production and hormonal balance. It can also help the hormones responsible for the proper functioning of the ovaries and the female reproductive process.
It also acts as a natural remedy for premenstrual syndrome, relieving cramps, headaches and balancing the mood, among others.
On the other hand, bergamot oil provides relief to women who are going through the menopause stage.
Natural treatment for a beautiful hair
If you want to have healthy hair, fat free, with strong roots and naturally bright; then, bergamot oil is for you.
You can apply it twice a week by adding a couple of drops in your moisturizer or hair treatment. Then, apply it on the hair massaging gently for 3-5 minutes, and let it act 20 minutes. Finally, rinse with warm water. With its constant use, you will achieve a beautiful strong, shiny and silky hair.
For a strong and healthy beard
Bergamot essential oil stimulates, opens, cleanses and purifies the pores of the skin, which promotes a healthy and ideal environment for the hair follicle root.
In addition, it promotes the absorption of necessary nutrients provided by bergamot oil.
This oil acts as a natural antioxidant and aromatizer. Besides, it has healing properties, and is able to combat oily and acneic skin.
On the other hand, thanks to its calming effect, it is ideal to treat irritation and itching that occurs with the growth and maintenance of the beard.
Common Application Methods for Bergamot Essential Oil
- Burners and vaporizers: In vapor therapy, bergamot oil can be used for depression, feeling fed-up, respiratory problems, colds and flu, PMS and SAD.
- Blended massage oil or in the bath: It can be used in a blended massage oil, or diluted in a bath to assist with stress, tension, SAD, PMS, skin problems, compulsive eating, postnatal depression, colds and flu, anxiety, depression, feeling fed-up and anorexia nervosa.
- Added in base cream: As a constituent in a blended base cream bergamot oil can be used for wounds and cuts, psoriasis, oily skin, scabies, eczema, acne, cold sores as well as chicken pox.
Warnings and Side Effects when using Bergamot Essential Oil
- Special care should be taken with the topical use of bergamot essential oil, because it activates the melanin in the skin, thus attracting the sun’s rays more than usual, which is why it is called photo-toxic.
- The use of bergamot oil in children and pregnant or breastfeeding women is contraindicated. This, because it may contain components that are toxic to the mother or child, and which could also cause premature detachment of the placenta. It is always recommended to consult your trusted doctor first and follow his instructions.
- Potassium deficiency: The content of bergamot in this oil, can reduce potassium levels in the body, which can cause cramps and muscle spasms.
There is a case report that involves a man who consumed about 1 cup of bergamot-flavored tea daily and developed muscle cramps, tics, abnormal sensations and blurred vision.
- Skin irritation: Like other essential oils, bergamot oil can be very irritating to the skin, unless it is well diluted. Even then, bergamot oil may cause side effects in some people.
These effects include blisters, scabs, redness and changes in skin pigmentation, mainly lightening changes. Some people use bergamot oil to help lighten pigmentation due to vitiligo disorder, but the effects may not be consistent.
- Photosensitivity: Bergamot oil can cause burns when used on a sensitive skin which is then exposed to sunlight, as the high content of bergaptene can cause photo-toxicity. It is advisable to keep out of the sun if this oil is used on the skin.
Even when the ingredient Bergaptene (Furocoumarin) is removed from the oil and photo toxicity is therefore minimized, it is still advisable to keep treated skin from the sun, and to use it in concentrations of less than 1%.
Where to buy Bergamot Essential Oil?
Usually, good quality oils, that is, 100% pure and not mixed with other substances, can be found in specialized natural herb stores.
If you can not reach a trusted naturist or herbalist shop near you, here are some recommendation for you:
Scent Characteristics:Fresh, sweet fruit, slightly balsamic, floral scent
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Tips for a better performance and duration of your oils:
- Store them in a dark glass bottle, never plastic, not even when blended with a carrier oil.
- Keep them in cool, dark places, away from sources of heat and light.
- Maintain the container that holds it tightly closed, since they are very volatile and also, their properties would be lost or modified.