Top 5 Essential Oils For The Immune System
Optimizing immune health is a great way to keep ourselves healthy when we don't know what might be lurking around the corner. Thankfully, we have essential oils to bolster us when needed and there is a lot of research to back up the claims. Before we get into the business of essential oils, let's take a quick look at our immune system to get a basic understanding of how it functions.
There are three divisions of the immune system: innate immunity, adaptive immunity and passive immunity. Innate immunity is our first defense and includes physical barriers such as the skin and chemical barriers such as stomach acid. This type of immunity has a very fast response. Equivalently, adaptive immunity’s job is to prevent us from getting sick in the future by building up our immune system and has a slower response. Its main focus involves our pathogen-fighting immune cells that work to destroy the germs that happen to get inside of us. With passive immunity, we receive antibodies from another person such as what is passed down during pregnancy and protects newborns.
The immune system becomes activated when encountered by harmful foreign substances and essential oils come in handy when either someone is sick around us or if we are sick. Essential oils provide us with added immune support so that we can better fight off whatever may be ailing us. Let's take a look at the different ways that essential oils work to help us maintain a healthy immune system.
Essential oils are lipophilic - meaning they can easily dissolve in fat - and because of this, the constituents found in certain essential oils can penetrate bacterial cell membranes and damage their molecular processes - rendering them either unable to duplicate or destroying them outright.  Some essential oils that have antimicrobial action are Cinnamon, Clove, Eucalyptus, Oregano, and Thyme.
In a similar way that antimicrobial oils can disrupt the cell membrane and structure of a pathogen, certain essential oils may also disrupt the constitution of the protein and lipids of fungi, rendering them mute. Several essential oils that have antifungal properties include Clove Bud, Fennel, Garlic, Lemon, Lemongrass, Oregano, Rosemary and Thyme.
Many essential oil constituents have shown an ability to interfere with the protective layer of viruses and other key viral functions and keep it from replicating. A few strong antivirals include Bergamot, Cinnamon, Clove Bud, Eucalyptus, Lemongrass, Tea Tree and Thyme.
Top 5 Essential Oils for Optimum Immune Health - Explained
Let's dig a bit deeper to understand why these oils have been touted as the go-to essential oils for immune health.
#1 CINNAMON- LEAF (Cinnamomum zeylanicum)
On top of the list of essential oils is the antimicrobial - virus and bacteria-fighting  essential oil of Cinnamon- Leaf. It is sweet, spicy and warm and by adding it to blends for cleaning surfaces or purifying the air your immune system will thank you by killing the germs before they reach you and your loved ones. Diffuse this oil alone or in a blend such as with our Fighting Five essential oil blend to up the ante against harmful germs in your personal spaces. Cinnamon has also been shown to fight off bacteria and fungi that cause ear infections .
#2 CLOVE- BUD (Eugenia caryophyllata)
Clove- Bud essential oil is sourced from dried flower buds and supports us with its anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, and antifungal activities. Two of its main components Carvacrol & Eugenol have demonstrated immune-supportive capabilities . Its unique aroma is reminiscent of the holidays and brings warmth to the cold days of winter. Soothing massage oil helps to increase blood circulation throughout the body and is an excellent choice to use in topical applications to relieve pain and promote healing.
#3 LEMON (Citrus limon)
Lemon essential oil is composed mainly of the monoterpene component d-Limonene. Its use in cleaning products is well-versed. In studies, Lemon essential oil showed consistently strong antimicrobial activity against bacteria.  Its ability to uplift sullen moods and inspire positive thinking is another reason to add it to one's DIY cleaning products. For topical applications, it is considered a skin penetration enhancer - its small molecules pave the way for larger molecules to enter your body through the skin.
#4 EUCALYPTUS- GLOBULUS (Eucalyptus globulus)
Eucalyptus- Globulus has a vibrant and refreshing aroma that is a common ingredient in cold care products, chest salves and inhalants to help clear breathing and relieve cold symptoms such as sore throat or cough. Its immune support is well-versed due to its high 1,8 cineole content that offers anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antibacterial activities. One study demonstrated antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli bacteria  and another against Staphylococcus aureus, the bacteria responsible for staph infections .
#5 ROSEMARY (Rosmarinus officinalis ct 1,8 cineole)
Rosemary ct 1.8 cineole is sourced from the leaves and flowers of the plant and its properties of 1,8 cineole, a-pinene and camphor give it its antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is an excellent expectorant for respiratory infections and when under the weather due to congestion and stuffy noses. We highly recommend using it with other decongestant oils in a chest rub to ease breathing and reduce mental fatigue.
Defending our health and fighting invaders we cannot see, Fighting Five is formulated to always have your back & safeguard you and your family when called upon. Consisting of the most impressive and aggressively powerful essential oils of all time: Lemon, Cinnamon- Leaf, Rosemary- Moroccan, Clove- Bud, Eucalyptus- Globulus and Eucalyptus- Radiata - these essential oils effectively work together to boost the immune system while giving the ax to airborne bacteria and germs. Try using it in a diffuser around your home to kill germs in the air and on surfaces. If you are curious to try a slightly gentler oil, Edens Garden also has its Immunity blend with gentler but effective immune-boosting essential oils that are perfect for steam inhalation to relieve congestion and ease cold and flu symptoms.
- Essential Oil and Health. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7309671/
- Antibacterial Effects of Cinnamon. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4586554/
- Antimicrobial effects of cinnamon essential oil. https://sfamjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/jam.14298
- The chemical composition and biological activity of clove essential oil. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17380552/
- Antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of citrus essential oils. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2212429219312015
- Antibacterial activity of the essential oils from the leaves of Eucalyptus globulus. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23570005/
- Staphylococcus aureus in Healthcare Settings. https://www.cdc.gov/hai/organisms/staph.html