Something of that concerns every single one of us is how we will deal with health issues in the event modern medicine and western doctors are no longer available to keep us well. This goes far beyond current health woes because, as you know, stuff happens and someone that is perfectly healthy one day may be stricken with a health-related malady the next.
With that introduction, a few months back I decided to explore whether the use of essential oils could help manage high blood pressure during times of trouble. From the get go, I will tell you that managing blood pressure with essential oils is a very personal quest. My own, traditionally perfect blood pressure, had suddenly taken a leap from 120/80 to 160/90 and higher. I was not a happy camper.
After consulting with my physician, I decided to experiment using essential oils before taking more drastic measures, named pharmaceuticals.
What is Blood Pressure?
Let me quote from Joe and Amy Alton’s excellent book, The Survival Medicine Handbook:
Blood pressure is the measure of the blood flow pushing against the walls of the arteries in your body. Without this flow of blood, oxygen would never get to all the organs of the body.
If this pressure, however, is elevated over time, it can cause long-term damage. Many millions of adults in the U.S. have this condition, which is often asymptomatic (no signs or symptoms). Because of this, it has been referred to as a “silent killer”. Blood pressure tends to rise with increasing age and weight.
For better or for worse, many adults routinely take blood pressure medications to control this silent killer. The hope is that by managing blood pressure, a stroke or heart attack can be avoided.
Essential Oils to Manage High Blood Pressure
The results of my research and testing have been quite remarkable. Before I share what has worked for me, I want to state that my use of essential oils to manage high blood pressure began with a baseline of good health. A healthy diet, frequent exercise, and height and weight in proportion are always a good starting point for any sort of natural protocol and I passed on all accounts.
With that out of the way, I can tell you that by applying the blend below, my blood pressure has stabilized at about 110/76 in the mornings and 106/66 in the evenings. On a few occasions it has been lower; low enough for me to verify that it was not too low. (It wasn’t.)
After a bit of trial and error, here is the recipe I use.
Blood Pressure Salve
After melting the Simple Salve, add the essential oils and mix well using a small stick or toothpick. Set it aside to firm up overnight.
Twice a day, take a bit of BP Salve, as I call it, and rub some into the sole of the left foot, right below the big toe. Also rub some below the ring finger of your left hand and over your heart. These are commonly referred to as the “reflex points” for the heart. (You might find the WikiHow on Reflexology interesting.)
If you don’t want to make up a batch of Simple Salve (directions here), you can use coconut oil, olive oil, or some other carrier oil.
Although I prefer the salve, I have also used the same essential oils in a roller ball topped with fractionated (liquid) coconut oil. In that case, use just 10 drops of Ylang Ylang and 5 drops each of the other oils.
Essential Oils Equals Calm Equals Less Stress
There is one additional step I have been taking as part of my overall blood pressure management protocol. Nightly, I have set a diffuser up on my nightstand and have diffused this same blend throughout the night.
To simplify the process, I have mixed a small bottle of the oils in the proportions shown. Then before bed, I add water to the diffuser and 8 drops of my blend. Whether it is a coincidence or not, my nocturnal visits to the bathroom have gone from six or seven times a night to one or two. I am sleeping better and, of course, my blood pressure is back in the normal range.
This has me thinking that perhaps the reason this protocol is working is because the the oils have been calming. Calm evokes relaxation and the end result is less stress. Is that really what is happening here?
I leave it up to you to decide whether you want to try a diffuser; all that I can say is that it is working for me.
A Word About Blood Pressure Monitors
I currently have two blood pressure monitors, although one is new and did not arrive in time for this article. One, the LifeSource UB-512 is more than a few years old and is being replaced because the battery cover has broken. It is being held together with tape at the moment but still is cranking away giving readings very similar to those in my doctor’s office. That said, I am looking forward to my new Omron 7 and expect that it will perform equally well.
Both Shelly and I have found that our BP readings are lower at night than in the morning. According to our physicians, it is normal to have some fluctuation so there is no cause for worry unless the numbers start to climb above the 140/90 range and stay there.
Regardless of what particular monitor you choose, taking a periodic reading is important so that you can take action if your levels become too high. As I discovered myself, that can happen in a flash.
The Next Step
Before you rush off and begin to self-medicate using essential oils let me say this. If you are under a doctor’s care for hypertension (high blood pressure), keep track of your results and share them with your health care provider before making any change in your drug protocol. With Shelly (aka the Survival Husband), his cardiologist was on board and changed his drug protocol ever so slightly because the results with EOs were promising. Not as good as mine, but promising.
The other thing is similar to all natural remedies, what works for one person make work better – or not at all – for someone else. Always keep that in mind and anticipate the need to experiment to find your own unique formula.
Disclaimer: Remember that I am not a health care professional. Furthermore, essential oils have not been approved by the FDA for medical use and this should not be construed as medical advice.
Essential Oils for Health and Wellness
After a ton of research, for wellness purposes I use 100% pure essential oils from Spark Naturals. There are a lot reasons the most important being their commitment to both quality and value. I am satisfied that the raw materials used in Spark Naturals products are tested and authenticated to be of pharmaceutical grade purity.
I also like that they are not an MLM and everyone pays the same price without having to cough up dues or membership fees. Spark Naturals is open about the fact that there is no official system that grades essential oils as A, B, C or Therapeutic grade. If you see a site that makes that claim, it is marketing hype and not fact.
The Final Word
I personally feel that essential oils are minor miracle workers. Some of my personal favorites include Melaleuca (Tea Tree), Oregano, Peppermint, and Lavender as well as the oils used in the blood pressure salve/blend. That said, if you are just starting out, I suggest you start with these four and branch out as you become more comfortable with using essential oils for day to day first aid purposes.
If the time ever comes when modern medicine is not available, I know for sure that I will turn to my cache of oils to get me through. As I have taken to saying: Stuff Happens – Be Ready!
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye Levy, also known as the Survival Woman, grew up and attended school in the Greater Seattle area. After spending many years as an executive in the software industry, she started a specialized accounting practice offering contract CFO work to emerging high tech and service industries. She has now abandoned city life and has moved to a serenely beautiful rural area on an island in NW Washington State. She lives and teaches the principles of a sustainable and self-reliant lifestyle through her website at BackdoorSurvival.com. At Backdoor Survival, Gaye speaks her mind and delivers her message of prepping with optimism and grace, regardless of the uncertain times and mayhem swirling around us.