- Effect of lavender aromatherapy on menopause hot flushing: A crossover randomized clinical trial. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Chin Med Assoc 2016 Jul 4.
Flushing is generally considered to be the primary symptom of menopause and is typically the most common complaint in menopausal women. Although flushing poses no danger to a woman's health, it decreases the quality of life. Thus, the purpose of this study was to determine the effect of lavender aromatherapy on menopause flushing.This double-blinded crossover clinical trial included 100 menopausal women 45-55 years of age who were referred to various health centers in Ardabil, Iran in 2013-2014. Samples were blocked randomly and divided into two intervention (lavender) and control (diluted milk) groups. Lavender aroma was smelled for 20 minutes twice a day, over a 12-week period. Data were collected using a demographic questionnaire, and flushing numbers were duly recorded. Data analysis was performed by SPSS version 16 (SPSS Inc., Chicago, IL, USA) using the Chi-square and t test.The results of our investigation showed that both groups had no significant difference according to demographic characteristics (p > 0.05). Additionally, the flushing number significantly decreased in the intervention group than in the control group (p < 0.001).This study indicated that the use of lavender aromatherapy reduced menopause flushing. Given the impact of stress on flushing and the undesirable effects of menopause symptoms on the quality of life, it would appear that this simple, noninvasive, safe, and effective method can be used by menopausal women with noticeable benefits.
- Qualitative and quantitative composition of essential oils: A literature-based database on contact allergens used for safety assessment. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Regul Toxicol Pharmacol 2016 Jun 29.:226-232.
The risks related to the use of essential oils are difficult to ascertain at present, due in part to the large number of different oils available on the market, making it difficult for the risk assessor. Essential oils may contain skin allergens in significant amounts, and could thus pose a risk to the consumer. The aim of our study was to collect as much qualitative and quantitative data as possible on allergens present in essential oils. 11 types of essential oils, with 25 respective subspecies, were taken into account based on a previous survey. Based on the literature, 517 dosages were recorded from 112 publications, providing precious information for probabilistic exposure assessment purposes. 22 substances recognized as established allergens were found in the essential oils we included. Of these, 11 are also found in cosmetics as fragrance components. These results are of major importance regarding co-exposure to fragrance allergens. Moreover, this could lead to regulatory measures for essential oils in the future, as it is the case for cosmetic products, in order to better protect consumers against skin allergy.
- Aroma Effects on Physiologic and Cognitive Function Following Acute Stress: A Mechanism Investigation. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Altern Complement Med 2016 Jun 29.
Aromas may improve physiologic and cognitive function after stress, but associated mechanisms remain unknown. This study evaluated the effects of lavender aroma, which is commonly used for stress reduction, on physiologic and cognitive functions. The contribution of pharmacologic, hedonic, and expectancy-related mechanisms of the aromatherapy effects was evaluated.Ninety-two healthy adults (mean age, 58.0 years; 79.3% women) were randomly assigned to three aroma groups (lavender, perceptible placebo [coconut], and nonperceptible placebo [water] and to two prime subgroups (primed, with a suggestion of inhaling a powerful stress-reducing aroma, or no prime). Participants' performance on a battery of cognitive tests, physiologic responses, and subjective stress were evaluated at baseline and after exposure to a stress battery during which aromatherapy was present. Participants also rated the intensity and pleasantness of their assigned aroma.Pharmacologic effects of lavender but not placebo aromas significantly benefited post-stress performance on the working memory task (F(2, 86) = 5.41; p = 0.006). Increased expectancy due to positive prime, regardless of aroma type, facilitated post-stress performance on the processing speed task (F(1, 87) = 8.31; p = 0.005). Aroma hedonics (pleasantness and intensity) played a role in the beneficial lavender effect on working memory and physiologic function.The observable aroma effects were produced by a combination of mechanisms involving aroma-specific pharmacologic properties, aroma hedonic properties, and participant expectations. In the future, each of these mechanisms could be manipulated to produce optimal functioning.
- Unraveling the rat blood genome-wide transcriptome after oral administration of lavender oil by a two-color dye-swap DNA microarray approach. [Journal Article]
- Genom Data 2016 Jun.:139-45.
Lavender oil (LO) is a commonly used essential oil in aromatherapy as non-traditional medicine. With an aim to demonstrate LO effects on the body, we have recently established an animal model investigating the influence of orally administered LO in rat tissues, genome-wide. In this brief, we investigate the effect of LO ingestion in the blood of rat. Rats were administered LO at usual therapeutic dose (5 mg/kg) in humans, and following collection of the venous blood from the heart and extraction of total RNA, the differentially expressed genes were screened using a 4 × 44-K whole-genome rat chip (Agilent microarray platform; Agilent Technologies, Palo Alto, CA, USA) in conjunction with a two-color dye-swap approach. A total of 834 differentially expressed genes in the blood were identified: 362 up-regulated and 472 down-regulated. These genes were functionally categorized using bioinformatics tools. The gene expression inventory of rat blood transcriptome under LO, a first report, has been deposited into the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO): GSE67499. The data will be a valuable resource in examining the effects of natural products, and which could also serve as a human model for further functional analysis and investigation.
- Effect of Aromatherapy Massage on Agitation and Depressive Mood in Individuals With Dementia. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Gerontol Nurs 2016 Jun 17.:1-9.
The current study examined the effects of aromatherapy massage on alleviating agitation and depressive mood in individuals with dementia. A randomized controlled trial and repeated measures design was conducted. A total of 59 participants were randomly assigned to intervention or control groups. The intervention group received aromatherapy massage once per week for 8 weeks. Results indicated no significant changes over time in overall agitation for either group, but agitation decreased from Week 1 to Week 5 for the intervention group. In addition, the overall depressive symptoms decreased significantly over time for the intervention group compared to the control group (p < 0.001). However, changes in agitation within 24 hours following aromatherapy massage showed some significant changes in Weeks 5 and 9. Aromatherapy massage can be an effective and safe intervention to alleviate specific agitated behaviors and depressive mood in individuals with dementia. [Journal of Gerontological Nursing, xx(x), xx-xx.].
- Essential Oils May Lead α-Synuclein towards Toxic Fibrils Formation. [Journal Article]
- Parkinsons Dis 2016.:6219249.
α-Synuclein (α-Syn) fibrillation links with Parkinson's disease (PD) and several related syndromes. It is believed that exposure to the factors which promote fibrillation may induce and progress such neurodegenerative diseases (NDs). Herein, the effects of some wildly used essential oils including Myrtus communis (M. communis) on α-Syn fibrillation were examined. M. communis particularly increased α-Syn fibrillation in a concentration dependent manner. Given that applications of M. communis are very extensive in Asian societies, especially Zoroastrians, this study was extended towards its role on α-Syn fibrillation/cytotoxicity. By using a unilamellar vesicle, it was shown that the aggregated species with tendency to perturb membrane were increased in the presence of M. communis. In this regard, the cytotoxicity of α-Syn on SH-SH5Y cells was also increased significantly. Inappropriately, the effects of fibrillation inhibitors, baicalein and cuminaldehyde, were modulated in the presence of M. communis. However, major components of M. communis did not induce fibrillation and also the effect of M. communis was limited on other fibrinogenic proteins. Assuming that essential oils have the ability to pass through the blood brain barrier (BBB) along with the popular attention on aromatherapy for the incurable ND, these findings suggest an implementation of fibrillation tests for essential oils.
- Aromatherapy in midwifery practice. [Journal Article]
- Pract Midwife 2016 May; 19(5):12, 14-5.
Aromatherapy is a complementary therapy that uses essential oils of plants to achieve therapeutic effects. Midwives can offer complementary therapies to women if they have been trained in their use and follow the required professional frameworks for regulation, permissions, monitoring and insurance. This article explores the use of aromatherapy to ease a common condition of pregnancy: that of lower back pain. This may be due to the lordosis of pregnancy, caused by the hormone relaxin--which increases in pregnancy and causes greater flexibility of joints and connective tissue--and by changes in body mass and centre of gravity; but it could also be caused by something else, such as strain or repeated movement. Any midwife offering aromatherapy should ensure that all other potential conditions and contraindications have been considered before commencing treatment, and would carry out a full assessment including taking adetailed history.
- Essential Oils and Pure Volatile Compounds as Potential Drugs in Alzheimer's Disease Therapy: An Updated Review of the Literature. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Curr Pharm Des 2016 Jun 6.
The use of aromatic plants to relief different illness is not a new therapy. Actually aromatic plants have been used for many centuries by different cultures around the world . Pharmacological studies provide scientific support to the traditional use of aromatic medicinal plants and aromatherapy; nevertheless, more clinical trials are required regarding to their effectiveness in order to establish a guidance for their use in routine healthcare. Moreover, modern medicine in studies about olfactory function has attained great achievements and got Nobel Prize in 2004. These new searches have obviously fueled interest in the essential oils and volatile compounds of natural origin. Several reviews on the newly discovered AChEi obtained from plants, fungus and marine organisms have also been published over the last years. The majority of these AChEi belong to the alkaloid group, including indole, isoquinoline, quinolizidine, piperidine and steroidal alkaloids.Probably the interest in the essential oils and volatile compounds will be fueled from the new available scientific data about receptor on olfactory mucosa of nasal cavity. It can receive and distinguish different odor molecules, which produce nerve impulse and transmit into olfactory bulb via olfactory nerves. The nerve cells in the olfactory bulb transmit the signals into hippocampus. Because hippocampus is closely related with learning and memory functions, the volatile compounds can be potential drugs in AD therapies.
- Massage with or without aromatherapy for symptom relief in people with cancer. [Journal Article, Review]
- Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2016.:CD009873.
Massage and aromatherapy massage are used to relieve cancer-related symptoms. A number of claims have been made for these treatments including reduction of pain, anxiety, depression, and stress. Other studies have not shown these benefits.To evaluate the effects of massage with or without aromatherapy on pain and other symptoms associated with cancer.We searched the following databases and trials registries up to August 2015: the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL, 2015, Issue 7), MEDLINE (Ovid), EMBASE (Ovid), PsycINFO (Ovid), CINAHL (EBSCO), PubMed Cancer Subset, SADCCT, and the World Health Organization (WHO) ICTRP. We also searched clinical trial registries for ongoing studies.Randomised controlled studies (RCTs) reporting the effects of aromatherapy or massage therapy, or both, in people with cancer of any age. We applied no language restrictions. Comparators were massage (using carrier oil only) versus no massage, massage with aromatherapy (using carrier oil plus essential oils) versus no massage, and massage with aromatherapy (using carrier oil plus essential oils) versus massage without aromatherapy (using carrier oil only).At least two review authors selected studies, assessed the risk of bias, and extracted data relating to pain and other symptoms associated with cancer, using standardised forms. We assessed the evidence using GRADE (Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation) and created two 'Summary of findings' tables.We included 19 studies (21 reports) of very low quality evidence with a total of 1274 participants. We included 14 studies (16 reports) in a qualitative synthesis and five studies in a quantitative synthesis (meta-analysis). Thirteen studies (14 reports, 596 participants) compared massage with no massage. Six studies (seven reports, 561 participants) compared aromatherapy massage with no massage. Two studies (117 participants) compared massage with aromatherapy and massage without aromatherapy. Fourteen studies had a high risk of bias related to sample size and 15 studies had a low risk of bias for blinding the outcome assessment. We judged the studies to be at unclear risk of bias overall. Our primary outcomes were pain and psychological symptoms. Two studies reported physical distress, rash, and general malaise as adverse events. The remaining 17 studies did not report adverse events. We downgraded the GRADE quality of evidence for all outcomes to very low because of observed imprecision, indirectness, imbalance between groups in many studies, and limitations of study design. Massage versus no-massage groupsWe analysed results for pain and anxiety but the quality of evidence was very low as most studies were small and considered at an unclear or high risk of bias due to poor reporting. Short-term pain (Present Pain Intensity-Visual Analogue Scale) was greater for the massage group compared with the no-massage group (one RCT, n = 72, mean difference (MD) -1.60, 95% confidence interval (CI) -2.67 to -0.53). Data for anxiety (State-Trait Anxiety Inventory-state) relief showed no significant difference in anxiety between the groups (three RCTs, n = 98, combined MD -5.36, 95% CI -16.06 to 5.34). The subgroup analysis for anxiety revealed that the anxiety relief for children was greater for the massage group compared with the no-massage group (one RCT, n = 30, MD -14.70, 95% CI -19.33 to -10.07), but the size of this effect was considered not clinically significant. Furthermore, this review demonstrated no differences in effects of massage on depression, mood disturbance, psychological distress, nausea, fatigue, physical symptom distress, or quality of life when compared with no massage. Massage with aromatherapy versus no-massage groupsWe analysed results for pain, anxiety, symptoms relating to the breast, and quality of life but the quality of evidence was very low as studies were generally at a high risk of bias. There was some indication of benefit in the aromatherapy-massage group but this benefit is unlikely to translate into clinical benefit. The relief of medium- and long-term pain (medium-term: one RCT, n = 86, MD 5.30, 95% CI 1.52 to 9.08; long-term: one RCT, n = 86, MD 3.80, 95% CI 0.19 to 7.41), anxiety (two RCTs, n = 253, combined MD -4.50, 95% CI -7.70 to -1.30), and long-term symptoms relating to the breast in people with breast cancer (one RCT, n = 86, MD -9.80, 95% CI -19.13 to -0.47) was greater for the aromatherapy-massage group, but the results were considered not clinically significant. The medium-term quality of life score was lower (better) for the aromatherapy-massage group compared with the no-massage group (one RCT, n = 30, MD -2.00, 95% CI -3.46 to -0.54). Massage with aromatherapy versus massage without aromatherapy groupsFrom the limited evidence available, we were unable to assess the effect of adding aromatherapy to massage on the relief of pain, psychological symptoms including anxiety and depression, physical symptom distress, or quality of life.There was a lack of evidence on the clinical effectiveness of massage for symptom relief in people with cancer. Most studies were too small to be reliable and key outcomes were not reported. Any further studies of aromatherapy and massage will need to address these concerns.
- Antibacterial and antifungal activities of thymol: A brief review of the literature. [Journal Article, Review]
- Food Chem 2016 Nov 1.:402-14.
Thymol (2-isopropyl-5-methylphenol) is the main monoterpene phenol occurring in essential oils isolated from plants belonging to the Lamiaceae family (Thymus, Ocimum, Origanum, and Monarda genera), and other plants such as those belonging to the Verbenaceae, Scrophulariaceae, Ranunculaceae, and Apiaceae families. These essential oils are used in the food industry for their flavouring and preservative properties, in commercial mosquito repellent formulations for their natural repellent effect, in aromatherapy, and in traditional medicine for the treatment of headaches, coughs, and diarrhea. Many different activities of thymol such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, local anaesthetic, antinociceptive, cicatrizing, antiseptic, and especially antibacterial and antifungal properties have been shown. This review aims to critically evaluate the available literature regarding the antibacterial and antifungal effects of thymol.