BOOK FOR SALE Essential Oil Safety

Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals 2nd Edition by Robert Tisserand (Author),? Rodney Young (Author)

“The only comprehensive text on the safety of essential oils. The first review of essential oil/drug interactions. Detailed essential oil constituent data not found in any other text. Essential oil safety guidelines. 400 essential oil profiles.” — Elsevier

 

FOR SALE AUCTION ON EBAY – Starting Bid $65

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Essential-Oil-Safety-A-Guide-for-Health-Care-Professionals-by-Tony-Balacs/222844934272

doTerra is drugging YOUR children!

Back in 2015 when I was the webmaster for Aromatherapy United, I wrote a follow up post on the doTerra company essential oil Drug Claims: doterra-drug-claims

About a month ago, I reported a doTerra salesperson to the FDA for making drug claims. I decided to see whether the doTerra corporate claims that they are “policing their own” is true, and copied them, too.

They replied. They missed the point – focusing on making sure their salespeople are competing with each other fairly, but my point was made. doTerra cannot continue to claim they have no idea these claims are being made, because my email reply proves otherwise.

Things are not getting better – in fact they are getting worse.

Now thousands and thousands of doTerra salespeople are not just putting their individual customers in danger, they are putting entire classrooms of children in harms way by pushing EOs as drugs to be introduced into childrens bodies without parents knowledge.

Complete and total disregard for the fact that salespeople and other parents drugging other peoples children is illegal, they continue to promote EOs to treat, cure, mitigate or prevent medical conditions and now YOUR childs’ brain may be chemically altered, your child with asthma may be at risk of dying, and your child’s immune system may be impacted by diffusing essential oils in the classroom!

Inhalation is the most effective method for treating systemic medical conditions, using essential oils. When inhaled, they directly impact the brain by triggering the olfactory bulb.

In addition, they reach the bloodstream via the lungs and are one of the class of chemicals which can pass the blood/brain barrier.

Salespeople for this company are promoting the practice of putting chemicals so strong they are used off-label as drugs, into your little childs’ body, and no one is doing a thing to stop it…including the management of doTerra who know their Diamond Level Salespeople are promoting this practice!

I looked at the profile for Administrator for this Facebook Group – she is promoting essential oils as drugs on her personal Facebook profile.

I googled her – here is a graphic from the website for one of the people she is credited for recruiting into the doTerra company – yup – doTerra DRUG CLAIMS including Alzheimer’s diseasecancerpneumonia and more.


The FDA needs the public to report these illegal drug claims for essential oils by salespeople. The aromatherapy industry is self-regulated, and in order to maintain the freedom we currently have to purchase and use essential oils safely, we need to all work together to enforce the laws against those individuals who jeopardize our rights with their false and illegal claims for essential oils and aromatherapy products.

NOTE: you do not need to be injured or experience an adverse effect, to report dangerous products.

“If you find a website you think is illegally selling human drugs*, animal drugs, medical devices, biological products, foods, dietary supplements* or cosmetics* over the Web, please select one of the three options below to report to FDA.”

 

*An essential oil sold in any way that implies it can treat, cure, prevent, mitigate or cure a medical condition, is being sold as a misbranded human drug. Medical conditions include issues which are often treated using over-the-counter drugs including help acne, ease pain, relax muscles, aid sleep, etc.

 

New Aromatherapy Company Launch – Ology Essentials

From the new website for Ology Essentials

There is a great depth of knowledge, training, and commitment behind Ology Essentials. You can trust Ology Essentials for accurate, scientific, and honest no-hype information about essential oils, business, and natural cosmetics. The founder of Ology Essentials is certified aromatherapist and cosmetic formulator Kayla Fioravanti. She has been a trusted disseminator of knowledge and provider of high quality products since she and her husband first co-founded Essential Wholesale in 1998.

I have known and admired owner Kayla Fioravanti since I first started in the soap and aromatherapy industry myself many years ago and her articles, posts on social networking and knowledge she so freely shared through Essential Wholesale are very much a foundation of my own knowledge base.  I am thrilled she is back in this industry again and highly recommend her company as a source of products and her school as a great place to learn about safe essential oil use an aromatherapy.  She represents what ethics in aromatherapy looks like on every level!


NOTE: I did not receive any products at a discount or free in exchange for my review, nor have I been compensated in any way. I am just a fan! I have no material affiliation with the websites in this blog post.

MLMs – A Public Health Hazard

I wish everyone would listen to this exceptional short lecture by David Crow!

Learn more about David Crow here: http://www.floracopeia.com/David-Crow/


NOTE: I did not receive any products at a discount or free in exchange for my review, nor have I been compensated in any way. I am just a fan! I have no material affiliation with any of the websites in this blog post.

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to post about essential oil and aromatherapy and herbal topics that are of interest to me both here on this blog and in my Facebook Group.

As of today we have 2,552 members in that Group, but with so little member participation, I have decided to direct my energies in a different direction. Teachers make a ton of money teaching courses to students, authors make money selling books, essential oil salespeople make money selling products.

I realize that my “ethics” are not in harmony with too many in this industry.

I’m not willing to turn a blind eye to the damage done to children, customers, and the industry itself by companies like doTerra – and stand silent while people make money, or promote their projects, or get their five minutes of “fame” in a self-serving *movie* – then be called a *hater* by exposing the hypocrisy in all of this. Educators who see the MLMers as their meal ticket with a “if you can’t beat them, join them” mentality. Men who finally open their mouths and take a stand – but when things get hot – let the women in their lives take the heat and they worry more about their reputation and so back pedal instead of stand strong and confront the challenges. I’m not an aromatherapist or an herbalist – I am a consumer and a blogger and I have always been offended by those who say things like “if people want to harm themselves with EOs, let them – thin the herd – natural selection – personal choice.” I’m done.

I’m going back to my herbal studies because I see a level of ethics, communication, unity of purpose, and professionalism in that community that is seriously lacking in every facet of the aromatherapy community and for my own personal wellness – I cannot take one more moment of people characterizing my passion for exposing FACTS about companies who are HARMING others as being a “hater” and when I am called a “HATER” – I realized not one single person in this industry that I considered to be an ally or friend – had my back. I’ve been the one to do the “dirty work” for too long. I should have known back in 2014 when a small group of us started discussing how to combat the dangerous marketing of essential oils as drugs – but one by one people were too afraid that putting their name out there would hurt THEIR book sales – or when it came down to SIGNING the online Petition – signing their name might cost them future students – that I would be left alone as the only person willing to SIGN the actual FDA complaint with my name. I took pride in that but I also thought doing all the hard work would align with others mission to promote safety. I was very naive. So this was a very eye opening experience to say the least.

No more free advice.

No more time spent exposing the lies and the fraud and the schemes that others use for personal gain.

I am done. THANK GOODNESS

Common Sense

It recently came to my attention that the owners (their term) of the “movie” Uncommon Scents have been advertising and promoting a doTerra essential oil collection (valued by the company) as being worth over $500, as part of their fundraising *crowdfunding* efforts to finish their project.  A lot of people objected to this affiliation and the movie producers turning what appears to be a blind eye to all the harm and injuries this company has been responsible for, in their pursuit of money to fund the “finishing” of their film/video project.

Here is one of many reasons I am opposed to any promotion of this company; back in 2013 I wrote the following article:

Essential Oil “Expert” risks lives!

As a follow-up to my report to the FDA, I made a call to the  Nevada State Board of Medical Examiners.

While I certainly care about the future of Aromatherapy in this country, I also care very deeply about innocent people being led to believe essential oils can cure their medical problems.

Here is just one example; this doTerra Multi-Level-Marketing Salesperson is actually prescribing an essential oil for the serious, life threatening illness – hemophilia…which equals practicing medicine without a license!

Some information about hemophilia from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC]:
“Hemophilia is an inherited bleeding disorder in which the blood does not clot properly. This can lead to spontaneous bleeding as well as bleeding following injuries or surgery.” http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/hemophilia/facts.html

“Mortality rates and hospitalization rates for bleeding complications from hemophilia were 40% lower among people who received care in hemophilia treatment centers than among those who did not receive this care.” http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/hemophilia/data.html

“Death can occur if the bleeding cannot be stopped or if it occurs in a vital organ such as the brain.”

And how does self-identified “Essential Oil Expert” answer the following question from a Mother on Facebook?

Evie asks “what oil would you suggest for someone who’s son is a hemophiliac? Would Helichrysum stop the bleeding?

She tells the Mother “Evie, Helichrysum will definitely help stop the bleeding

Does she care that her medical advice could kill someone or cause permanent harm? Does she care that in fact, every oil that has ever been tested is, if anything, either inactive or blood-thinning and  yet she is advising someone to use this EO for this condition which could KILL A CHILD?

Nope…all she cares about is making money selling essential oils to unsuspecting customers.

After all…she calls herself an Expert!  Is she a Certified Aromatherapist?  No.

We know she is not a doctor – perhaps a nurse or a licensed massage therapist? Nope…she is nothing – and has no actual professional education in the field of aromatherapy or health care at all.

But she thinks adding the standard doTerra company Disclaimer means she can say and do whatever she wants and it is up to the public to dig around her website and discover…too bad if you get hurt…you are on your own: “I am not a licensed physician and can’t diagnose or prescribe medications for you.  This disclaimer acts as the explicit waiver of any liability of myself as an Independent Product Consultant or doTERRA as a company.”

So…if she can’t prescribe medications by law – why is her Facebook page under the category “Health/Medical/Pharmaceuticals” …because she wants her customers to THINK she CAN prescribe Essential Oils to cure their Medical problems…that’s why!

Use some Common Sense Uncommon Scents:

Bad Company Corrupts Good Character

and

You Lie Down with Dogs, You Get Up with Fleas!

Tisserand Defends Science

In a rare example of online confrontation; essential oil safety expert, author and educator Robert Tisserand recently took on blogger, guest speaker, educator Jade Schutes* in this blog post: In Defense of Science

Jade writes: “What’s better than research in aromatherapy? – Practice and the results an aromatherapy practitioner experiences with individual clients, with family members, with friends, and/or with self, and then sharing these experiences with other aromatherapy practitioners.”

Robert shared his blog post on both his personal Facebook profile and the business page for his Tisserand Institute. A rather heated series of comments on his and Jade’s Facebook pages followed. Many of the comments have since been deleted from both his and Jade’s Pages. How unfortunate!

One missing item is the topic which came up, of relying on testimonials and anecdotal reports of people who have positive effects from using EOs, or who are not harmed by using them in ways; but those same people totally dismiss testimonials and anecdotal reports when they are documenting injury or adverse effects!

I posted a link to the online Injury Database being hosted by Aromatherapy United, reports which have been collected by volunteers with The Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy.

Side Note: Why are volunteers collecting this important data? When Jade was President of NAHA for the second time, without a vote of national Directors or Members, she directed that the data collection and much of the Safety information be removed from the NAHA website. Prior to that during her first reign as President, there was a petition and complaint sent to the IRS Nonprofit Regulations & Enforcement Division, requesting an investigation of her regarding issues including her use of non-profit funds for personal gain: http://nahaexposed.org/

These injury reports are nothing really unique. Almost all the injuries or adverse effects could have been predicted because there is science to support that almost every incident was the result of the injured party taking potential risks which outweighed the possible benefits.

But the very same people who dismiss the testimonials of injuries, somehow suspend disbelief when it comes to Jade’s claims that an individuals positive experience matters more than “research”.

Jade writes: “When I read what others have written from the ‘intellectual’ side regarding polarity, solubility, and sensitization risk, I think to myself, these are people who have never taken a bath with aromatic bathing salts or essential oils.”

Oh, but when that bath results in rash, chemical burns, one heck of a tender vagina – nope – doesn’t count. There was no third party verification that bath ever took place, or that skin was damaged, and whose to say this person was really in pain! Is there a hospital record? An invoice from an ambulance company! NO. Dimissed. Not enough proof.

The ‘intellectual’ side take baths. They are not working in climate controlled laboratories, in haz-mat suits, dripping EOs on rabbit skins to see what burns. Researchers are compiling data from people, people with positive experiences and people with negative experiences. Then they analyze that data.

Maybe even from the bathtub.


*It is not clear where Jade’s actual one-on-one experience with people using aromatherapy comes from. Nothing in her online biography indicates she has an actual Aromatherapy practice or sees clients. She is not licensed in any field, she is not a Registered Aromatherapist. Which leaves me wondering, where does all the aromatherapy practitioner experiences with individual clients *non-research* she depends on so much for teaching her students, actually come from!

UPDATE: I found the answer to my earlier question about how someone who does not say they have an aromatherapy practice, gets all this “aromatherapy practitioner experiences with individual clients”! Jade’s friends and students are her guinea pigs.  She experiments on them, then observes how they respond!  And why not?  In her opinion – right from her website – it’s no big deal.  Not like anyone died or anything.  Yet.

And in conclusion – it’s not “harm” per se – simply a tragedy:

Reputations Count!

If you have been buying essential oils since the 1980’s or so, you probably used many tools to help choose which brands to purchase. Personally? I bought a lot of books, and looked in the back of the books for Resource Guides. Most books about aromatherapy had lists of companies the author would recommended. I also spoke to teachers of aromatherapy, and asked what companies they recommended. I honestly don’t know of a single consumer, aromatherapist or essential oil educator from the *early days* who relied on getting a GC/MS test result BEFORE they decided to buy an oil! That kind of testing was certainly used people in the wholesale supply chain – both to determine purity and quality. But not on the retail consumer level!

Things changed a bit thanks to self-proclaimed “experts” coordinating crowd-funded “3rd Party Testing” of a series of essential oils starting in 2013. The result? All hell broke loose! Yes, a few companies were found to be selling (knowingly or unknowingly) adulterated products. But some legitimate companies were defamed and damaged. How? One popular brand was selling a boutique oil from a small distiller. It was analyzed and compared to the library sample of a “pure oil” which was from a completely different country of origin! This so called “expert” declared the oil to be “adulterated” when in fact, it was 100% pure.

In another incident, a well known MLM brand of peppermint oil tested as adulturated with ethyl vanillin. Well known expert and affiliate of the same MLM (he was *their* contract chemist) disagreed with the analysis of the test results.

[ref. https://www.facebook.com/notes/10152519141798083/]

I use this as an example of how experts can test the same sample, or even evaluate the same test results, and reach different conclusions. These tests are scientific, but they are still quite dependent on the individual doing the analysis, not just the skill or expertise of the lab running the actual test.

So why have we become so dependent on these tests, as consumers? In my opinion, the reason is fear.

Fear and folks preying upon that fear to make consumers increasingly reliant on “lab tests” to make decisions on which products to purchase. They set up crowd funding schemes or “non profit” companies (more about that later**) and convince their fans and followers to send them money to pay for testing, and convince them there is no other way to determine if the oil is pure or good quality (rarely if ever with a criteria *for* good quality I must add).

I recently read that there is even a school which teaches “if a brand does not include a GC/MS test result with your bottle, don’t trust them.” I’m sure this school has loads of new students who think they can’t buy a bottle of lavender oil unless they complete a course on understanding these test results! FOLLOW THE MONEY!

Lets say you regularly stock Lemon EO from ten different batches, and sell retail sized bottles all across North America and Eastern Europe. You have test results from each batch on file, of course.  But to also produce flyers to insert in boxes, and match up those flyers to each specific batch number as the product goes through the assembly line, is both unrealistic and would dramatically increase the price of these retail bottles.  And for what?  A consumer pacifier, because while the retail customer may have no idea what the report says, some blogger or teacher claims they should not trust the brand unless this information is available to them?  It’s both unrealistic and actually increases the incentive to provide fraudulent reports.

Example – you buy a bottle of lavender and get this report with it {used for editorial purposes only}. If you are not trained to evaluate the report – for all you know – it’s not even lavender! [It is].

It is also naive to believe that just because one bottle of EO tested pure, or with specific constituents in certain percentages, that the next batch will be the same. If a company wants to cheat, they are going to cheat!

Dr. Pappas of Essential Oil University writes in his article “The Proper Protocol for Utilizing EO Analysis Reports“:

“Lastly, its very important for anyone selling essential oils to know that if you have an analysis done on a pre-ship sample for the purposes of making buying decisions, then you CANNOT use that report on the pre-ship sample to represent the actual bulk lot that is purchased and received in, even if your supplier says it’s the same lot. If you want to forgo having your actual received lot analyzed because you trust your supplier to send the same thing they sampled you then that is fine, but you CANNOT use that pre-ship sample report to represent the oil that you sell to your customers because you did not have the actual bulk lot analyzed once it came in your door. This is very important because it frequently happens that a supplier sends one lot as a pre-ship sample but the actual oil that is shipped in bulk to fill the order does not match the pre-ship sample. I know it sounds crazy but this happens all the time.”

So what percentage of EOs that come with reports, are unsuspecting essential oil consumers purchasing based on the “school of thought” that as long as the bottle comes with a GC/MS or they can download it from the suppliers website, it’s some guarantee of purity or quality. These customers may be fooling themselves!

So how do you choose a good, reliable, high quality brand?  Go back to basics!

  • History – has the brand been around for many years?  That’s a positive.
  • Affiliations – does the company & staff belong to professional associations*
  • Education – who are the owners of the company, and where did they study aromatherapy?
  • Marketing & Labeling – truthful, legal, industry standards:
    • Common name for the Plant
    • Latin name
    • Plant part
    • The extraction process
    • “Keep out of reach of children”
    • “External Use Only”or “Not for Internal Use” or “Not for Ingestion”
    • An expiration date or date of manufacture or Batch Number
  • Reputation – A good reputation among professionals in the aromatherapy field is critical.
    • A bad reputation is rarely without cause in this industry.
      • Look for honesty and transparency if there was an issue with a product in the past
      • Watch out for prices which seem too good to be true – that is a big red flag!
      • Watch out for salespeople who claim their product is organic, without Certification
      • BEWARE of companies that claim their essential oils are “Therapeutic Grade” or “Clinical Grade” or “Pharma Grade” or “Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade” – there are no such grades! THESE CLAIMS ARE LIES.

*American Herbal Products Association (AHPA), The Aromatherapy Trade Council (ATC) and owners or employees who belong to the International Federation of Professional Aromatherapists (IFPA), Alliance of International Aromatherapists (AIA), or National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA).


In conclusion, during every step of the supply chain, proper testing using standard methods for essential oil analysis should be mandatory. If someone is a formulator making perfume, or cosmetics, or soap, or OTC Drugs, naturally they need to know the exact chemistry in the essential oils they are using to formulate their products and obtaining a GC/MS that is batch specific can be critical. But those people are not buying small retail sized (and priced) bottles of EOs. They buy wholesale. Professionally trained aromatherapists or massage therapists who use essential oils on a regular basis, probably also usually buy in larger sized bottles and retail off-the-shelf sizes, and they also might need to have access to test results.  But the average retail customer, using the recommendations above, can almost always avoid brands which are likely to be adulterated.


**Following the money includes businesses that claim they are charities but which are not!  We are a country of laws and the IRS does not allow a business to accept money and claim they are “donations” and pretend they are a charity unless the IRS has reviewed the application for non-profit status as a 501[c][3] tax-exempt organization and approved the application.

In this case, being affiliated with well-respected members of the aromatherapy community does not give this organization credibility, by contrast, it seriously damages anyone affiliated with them!

Sensitization Update

Robert Tisserand announced today “Do not apply undiluted essential oils to your skin. It’s that simple.

“I have recently changed my stance on this after seeing the number of people experiencing adverse reactions to essential oils that are not high risk, such as frankincense, helichrysum and lavender.”

This announcement is tied into his new Tisserand Institute Safety Pages.

This is a long time coming.  Robert has always allowed for a certain amount of neat usage as low risk in the past (see quote below). So better late than never.  Because Sensitization is forever.

The National Association of Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA) used to promote safety and warn about sensitization on their old website, under more safety-minded management.  Here is a link to my Lost and Found: Sensitization article on that subject.

Here is some additional information from an old article I wrote for the (defunct) American Essential Oil Trade Association (aka AEOTA):

Sensitization “exposure to allergen that results in the development of hypersensitivity.” [1]

essential oil poured on a female back in spa centre
essential oil poured on a female back in spa centre

So what is hypersensitivity? Is a hypersensitivity reaction the same as an allergic reaction?

Answer, yes. They are synonyms, BUT there are four different types of allergic reaction:

“a local or general reaction of an organism following contact with a specific allergen to which it has been previously exposed and sensitized; immunologic mechanisms gives rise to inflammation or tissue damage. Allergic reactions are classified into four major types: type I, anaphylactic and IgE dependent; type II, cytotoxic; type III, immune-complex mediated;type IV, cell mediated (delayed).”[2]

For the purposes of aromatherapy safety, any essential oil can become an allergen by using it undiluted on the skin; and this risk is there for all essential oils, including lavender (note – originally published in 2014).

So while there are certain essential oils which have a known reputation for being potential allergens or with a reputation for sensitization, using any essential oil neat (undiluted) sets the individul up for a potential allergic reaction, leading to sensitization, and forever being allergic to that essential oil.

Robert Tisserand explains:

“Yes, sensitization is the process that takes place in the body that leads to an allergic reaction. They are not the same thing, but they are not totally different either. There are 4 types of allergic reaction, [3] but only two are relevant to essential oils. Type 4 (delayed hypersensitivity) accounts for 90% of allergic reactions. Type 1 is immediate hypersensitivity (generally not anaphylactic) and accounts for the other 10%. You could say the risk is potentially there for all essential oils, but this is a little unfair on the majority of oils, that have never been known to cause such reactions. I don’t like to assume risk that may not exist. The less you dilute the more you increase risk, but that doesn’t mean that undiluted copaiba oil is a greater risk than 1% cinnamon bark oil. It isn’t.”

1. Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved
2. Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012
3. http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/136217-overview