For years I never even tried essential oils (derived from plants) because of the smell factor. My sensitivity to smells was so extreme that even natural smells like food cooking or fresh lemons would cause problems for me. The few times I was around someone who used essential oils, I had bad reactions, so I quickly learned to avoid them.
Thankfully, I'm so much better now that I can enjoy some natural smells again. However at this point, I've only tried essential oils in the tiny beadlet form. I was able to swallow a peppermint oil beadlet once. Another time I took a blend of oils in a beadlet. The smell of the beadlets is much less than the oil itself. And these two products did seem to help me.
Based on my limited knowledge so far, I think essential oils have great potential for healing - for those who can tolerate their naturally strong aroma. They are a much better alternative to the plethora of drugs and medications that only suppress symptoms instead of promoting healing.
Essential oils are used for many different things, including fighting infections, improving digestion and sleep, boosting immunity, etc. It's no wonder more people are starting to use them, since they are very versatile and naturally promote health and healing in the body.
Many natural health proponents use essential oils. Jordan Rubin talks about essential oils in his book, The Maker's Diet. Dr. Mercola has written a good article that lists his top five essential oils and various ways you can use them. And this website gives a good overview of what essential oils are and which ones to use for various issues.
There are several companies now producing essential oils products and providing training about how to use them. I have friends with various companies and they all seem to be benefiting health-wise.
Having said that, I think it's very important to work with someone who knows what they're doing and who considers your unique body and health situation. Just because essential oils are natural, doesn't mean they're safe to use any way you choose. But if you have a knowledgeable health professional to work with, or get the training you need, then I think essential oils can be a great tool in your health tool belt. =)
What comments or questions do you have about essential oils?