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The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils: The Science of Advanced Aromatherapy Paperback – November 8, 2011
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“Kurt Schnaubelt continues his professional validation of essential oils as serious health care products. Using in-depth but approachable science, Schnaubelt shows how humans and plants have evolved together, supporting and influencing each other’s development and well-being over millennia. Each section of this beautifully illustrated book covers a different area of aromatherapy study, from how to recognize authentic oils to recipes for basic health issues and all interspersed with delightful “Essential Oil Journeys” that trace the use of plant essences around the world. Suitable for professional therapists of all kinds while still accessible to the home practitioner, The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils is destined to become a well-thumbed classic in every health library.” (Suzanne Catty, author of Hydrosols: The Next Aromatherapy)
“Particularly unique is the layout of pages and the tidbits of information on the edges highlighting subjects such as toxicity myths, quotes by various contributors to the craft, nods to plant pioneers, and more. Throughout the book Dr. Schnaubelt presents the work of other prominent figures in the profession, explores historical views of essential oils from around the world, and the utilization of essential oils in various cultures.” (Mindy Green, MS, AHG, RA, HerbalGram, November 2011)
“It offers new essential oil treatment opportunities for hepatitis, osteoporosis, liver detoxification, and the prevention of UV damage and melanoma while showing how even home use of essential oils for relaxation or skin care can help build one’s immunity and overall well being.” (Yoga Magazine, January2012)
“Kurt Schaubelt takes a rare stand as a chemist and speaks in favor of aromatherapy, using this book to illustrate how essential oils work differently from synthesized pharmaceutical materials.” (Diana Rajchel, Facing North April 2012)
“Schnaubelt’s beautiful job of merging science and plant energetics is reflected in [The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils].” (Kathi Keville, American Herb Association, March 2013)
“Dr. Schnaubelt shows a cutting-edge aromatherapy perspective in this book and gives us many answers to deeply understand the co-evolution of plants and human beings.” (Ayako Berg, London School of Aromatherapy, Japan)
“Authoritatively written, this title will easily find an audience among herbalists, massage therapists, home-health advocates, complementary and alternative clinicians, and their patients. Conventional medical practitioners and pharmacists might also find it a worthy, informative read.” (Janet Tapper, Library Journal, October 2011)
From the Back Cover
HEALTH / WELLNESS
“Each section of this beautifully illustrated book covers a different area of aromatherapy study, from how to recognize authentic oils to recipes for basic health issues and all interspersed with delightful “Essential Oil Journeys” that trace the use of plant essences around the world. Suitable for professional therapists of all kinds while still accessible to the home practitioner, The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils is destined to become a well-thumbed classic in every health library.”
--Suzanne Catty, author of Hydrosols: The Next Aromatherapy
Exploring science’s new biological understanding of essential oils and their advantages over synthetic drugs, renowned aromatherapist Kurt Schnaubelt reveals how the effectiveness of essential oil treatments stems from our common biochemical and cellular heritage with plants. He explains how essential oils preserve a plant’s complex natural life-supporting and immune-building qualities, developed through millions of years of interaction with animals and humans. Reviewing recent research in molecular, cellular, and evolutionary biology, he shows how the multilayered activity of plant essences helps maintain the integrity of our genetic code--the reason why pathogens cannot develop resistance toward essential oils as they do with antibiotics and antivirals--making essential oils a more effective and sustainable form of treatment for a variety of health problems.
Laying to rest old arguments over essential oils’ alleged toxicity and whether they can be ingested or used undiluted, Schnaubelt presents simple recipes and protocols for treating and preventing common ailments, such as colds, flu, herpes, and candida, as well as for pain management. Offering new essential oil treatment opportunities for hepatitis, osteoporosis, liver detoxification, and the prevention of UV damage and melanoma, he shows how essential oils can also ameliorate the debilitating side effects of chemotherapy and other cancer treatments as well as how even home use of essential oils for relaxation or skin care can help build one’s immunity and overall well-being.
KURT SCHNAUBELT holds a Ph.D. in chemistry and is the founder and scientific director of the Pacific Institute of Aromatherapy in San Francisco. The author of Advanced Aromatherapy and Medical Aromatherapy, he lives in San Rafael, California.
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Top customer reviews
I am a Registered Nurse, and am most interested in the whys of how different treatment modalities work, just as much as I am with the results (provides a solid basis for deciding to initiate, continue, or terminate any given treatment modality, be it aspirin or an essential oil). This book does a very good job of giving me a starting point of where I can start really learning about the phisiological interactions our bodies, down to the cellular level, have with the different compounds found within essential oils. For those who aren't familiar (or just need a refresher from your A&P or BioChem classes), Dr. Schnaubelt provides a brief overview of cellular structure, chemical bonds, molecular polarity, etc. in his writing and diagrams, and explains why these structures and their properties are important in the application of essential oils as a therapeutic modality.
If you feel a bit rusty in your biology and chemistry studies, a quick review of basic human biology (cellular structure, protein structure & synthesis, enzyme structure, synthesis, and actions, DNA & RNA synthesis & replication, etc.) and chemistry (remember all of those fun diagrams we had to draw to visualize the component molecules & the associated bonds that make up various compounds? Theeeeyyyyyrrrreeee baaaaaaaack! At least Dr. Schnaubelt makes it more interesting, and there won't be a pop-quiz tomorrow... but don't forget to also read up some of the common molecules and groups found in biological organisms) will greatly enhance your experience with this book. If you don't want to go that route, then simply just look up unfamiliar things when you come across them. Understanding these basics of biology and chemistry will prove to be the foundation from which your knowledge and applied aromatherapy practice will be based on. Think of it as something like knowing the roles for individual positions on a football team before you can become a coach, and start making up play-books of your own.
I also find it very refreshing that Dr. Schnaubelt does not completely dismiss Western medicine, as many other "alternative" or "holistic" practitioners seem to do. While he does have an obvious, and understandable, issue with the phamaceutical industry and its' implications for actual human health, he without a doubt recognizes and encourages people to consult with and seek treatment from a professional doctor/NP/PA when it is prudent.
Even as my knowledge of this field is expanding, I still find myself referring to this book in my studies. For people that are interested in, or have already made essential oil treatment part of their lives, this book will not likely collect dust on the bookshelf after reading it. Just understand that there IS a strong scientific/technical element to the book, so you may need to reference other sources (like old college science textbooks) to extract the maximum amount of knowledge that Dr. Schnaubelt is sharing in his writings. The extra effort is well worth the payoff: an ability to truly understand the connections and interactions between our bodies and essential oils, which leads to greater competence and confidence in the field of applied aromatherapy.
For those that enjoy this book, I highly recommend his other books on essential oils for continuing education on the subject. If I were to classify each book as in an academic progression, I would say that his book "Advanced Aromatherapy" is the intro level book, this book is the intermediate book, and "Medical Aromatherapy" is the intermediate-advanced level book.
Special note: While the author has business connections with the Pacific Institute of Aromatherapy, as well as the associated product line of Original Swiss Aromatics, he does NOT make either the focus of any of his books. They may be mentioned in passing a few times in the text of each book, but these books are definitely NOT large advertisements for a particular brand of oil or a paticular school. I encountered this in a few other aromatherapy books, which was a HUGE turn-off for me; I'm not one to pay my own money for advertisements disguised as instructional texts. Dr. Schnaubelt simply stresses the quality and sourcing of oils in the writing, and only mentions specific products sporadically. :)
The Science behind aromatherapy is really interesting and this book is not a boring read . Not only do you learn the science behind why and how the essential oils work to heal , you learn about the differences in the quality of essential oils and are even given an exercise to learn how to be able to tell if an essential oil is a clonal version or a hybrid version.
There are guidelines and precautions included and a lot of different recipe's for specific ailments . The footnotes are wonderful and have many leads and references to other authors and specialist on the subject matter for those who want to go further into their research on this subject . The photos throughout are also a colorful and lovely addition, from vast fields of Lavender to the great Shwedogon Paya , a Sunset in Sabah and so many more beautiful photos that grace throughout the pages of this wonderful and informative book.
For anyone who is serious and or just curious about Aromatherapy and the use of essential oils for healing and want to know the science behind how they work or learn recipe's for specific ailments buy this book . It is a great investment well worth the time and money.
Part of the problem is there's no funding for study of essential oils, or the studies being done are in vitro, not in vivo, (although every other part of the world is doing research except the US).
Part of the problem is that there's a lot of folk lore around essential oils since they have been used for the last 500 years or so. And then the waters are REALLY muddied by various well meaning folks who are part of reputable direct sales marketing companies. These people think they know what they are talking about as they disseminate misinformation ad nauseum.
Dr. Schnaubelt is recognized as the most reliable provider of information about the use and effects of EOs. Although the research just isn't available some times, there's enough anecdotal or personal experience with the oils through Dr. Schnaubelt's work to support his recommendations.
The only reason why I didn't give it five stars is that it didn't quite meet my expectations. This book is definitely more science based (which I love), but it lacked in the meaning of each oil and what it is good for treating.
Overall, I'm happy I bought it and read it because I learned a lot that I have never read on the internet before. Good for the hard core oiler.