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Episode 50: How Do I Know What Oils to Use?

In this episode Dr. JoDee Anderson teaches how you can find the best oils to use in every situation. She'll give her favorite resources for researching and let you know some of her favorite oils to use in some common situations.


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doTERRA: Welcome back to Essential Oil Solutions with doTERRA, the podcast where you'll hear exciting, useful, and simple everyday uses for essential oils from experts in the field. If you like what you hear today rate, review, and subscribe wherever you listen. We always appreciate hearing from you. Today we’re excited to have Dr. JoDee Anderson talk to us about how to know which essential oils you should be using in every circumstance.

JoDee: Hi, I'm Dr. JoDee. I've been asked to talk about how you figure out what oils to use for what. So I wanted to start by telling you how this worked for me 'cause it was kind of a long process. I'll give you a little insight into what goes on in my head. 

I was introduced to doTERRA a few years ago, and I had heard that you could use things like Lavender to help you sleep. I use to work in the hospital a lot, I never slept. So, I was very curious what the natural solutions were for sleep. So, just like any good patient, I googled it. Which Dr. Google is full of information, and it occurred to me that I was acting just like the people I took care of and I didn't know what information was valid or not, where the evidence was. So I read all this great stuff, and then I started looking at who wrote this? What does that mean? Is it real, does this really work? Does this apply to all lavender oils? What's special? And I felt totally overwhelmed. So in my scientific way I then jumped to the other extreme and I went to PubMed, and I started PubMeding all of these different oils and then they went into the Latin names, and I started going down these rabbit holes, and it became really confusing. 

Well, all this while I actually had an account with doTERRA and I could of gone to the website. I don't know if you've seen this, but there's a section called Discover Solutions. It's under the Resources tab and that is now where I go to start and when I'm working with other people, rather than saying, "Hey, believe me on this." I always send them there first, and I kind of describe my process after that. 

So that resource, Discover Solutions, has three areas in it. It talks about wellness topics and some of those have PowerPoints. They explain the science, they explain the research that's been done. So that gives me kind of a tipping point 'cause I wanna learn more after I start digging in there. It also has a section on just products. So I could put in the different products that I wanted to look at, and then if I really don't know, it has a body system section. So the body systems allow me to go into, for example, I'm very interested in skin. Go into the integumentary system and see what oils support that system. 

So that's now my first stop. It makes sense to me because not all essential are created the same. Not all of them are pure. And so I don't know, if I'm not working with doTERRA, I don't know if this other information I'm reading really applies to the oils that I work with. So I start with the doTERRA site, I start with Discover Solutions. 

So I wanna walk you through my process for a couple of the blends I found when I started—I never just trust anything—but if I started with a blend and I looked at what was in the blend, I could actually then start to pick apart, oh, how does this work? How does that work? And I started to really trust the blends. I was a big skeptic when I started and through my own process of doing this research, looking what was in the blends, and then applying them to myself, I've come to really believe that the science of blending. What's done with some of our blends in doTERRA is pretty profound. So I can encourage you to take it at face value 'cause I've done all the background research on it. 

But let me talk about that a little bit, so I run a skincare clinic, and I'm really interested in some natural solutions for skin and I've heard a lot of things. People are always tossing around Frankincense for this, Sandalwood for that, Helichrysum for this and I wanted to know what the science was behind that. So I actually started with Immortelle and I went to the Discover Solutions site and I went to the integumentary system, so in the body systems down below, and I looked up skin and that was one of the first products listed. So I pulled up Immortelle and I read what was in it. Immortelle has Frankincense, Lavender, Sandalwood, Myrrh, Helichrysum, and Rose. I went from there and read through how it was suggested to be used, and then I needed to know whether or not I thought it would work. For that—I work from evidence—I did go to PubMed, but rather than typing “Immortelle” into Google, I typed in “Frankincense” and I read about some of the studies in skin. I did the same thing for Lavender, the same thing for Sandalwood, the same thing for Myrrh, Helichrysum, and Rose and I was blown away. There's a lot of science. There's actually a lot of science supporting the use of essential oils for helping to support our bodies in different ways. So I was kind of excited about that. And then I developed some confidence in understanding how to use these on myself and how to recommend them for other people, and I knew there was science to back it up which made me feel really good. But if I hadn't started with what was in the blend, and the Discover Solutions place, I would of probably, and you can see this when you Google it, I would of ended up with a myriad of things they said would help with skin, and it wouldn't of given me much direction in terms of how to find that science. 

I can feel confident in this blend, it makes a lot of sense to me. We all experience some dryness with our skin, and finding essential oils that can support the hydration in our skin is really important too. Rose essential oil is amazing for that. All of them have a unique ability to support our skin in ways I didn't know about. And you know what's fascinating? When I pull up some of my products and I look at the botanical ingredients, they look a lot the same as what I'm finding in a lot of the doTERRA skincare products and in Immortelle which, one more wave, and I'm like, huh. 

The other thing that kind of excited me about that is I know my essential oils are pure. I don't know that about every product I'm putting on my face, and I worry about being exposed to a lot of those chemicals. If I go and look these up, I can find some concerning things in various products and I can feel really assured that I'm not being exposed to any of that when I'm using a pure essential oil which is what's kind of our guarantee for doTERRA, we can look 'em up. So I was pretty excited when I started to look into skin. 

So again, my process was what's recommended? I go to the integumentary system, I look at what's recommended, I see that my number one thing is Immortelle. I look at what's in the blend, and then I look up each factor in the blend, and that worked for me. 

Then I started digging into other things I was interested in. I have an 11-year-old daughter, I wanted to see if we could help her with her focus. She plays goalkeeper, so it's really important that she focuses during the games and for issues in school and such. So I actually went into the doTERRA site again. I think I'm gonna peek here and make sure I'm telling you right, but I think this is under my wellness solutions and there is a whole presentation by Dr. Brannick that talks about attention and how to improve attention with essential oils and the number one oil that he talks about is InTune®. I didn't know anything about InTune. So this is actually a combination of oils that calm you and help with clarity. And I thought that was interesting, but first I thought, well, how do the oils calm you? So again, they have Patchouli, Ylang Ylang, and chamomile in that oil and those are the calming parts of the blend. So I started looking into those. I wanted to know what they did for neurotransmitters. How did they calm your system? What effect does inhaling one of those oils have on your amygdala through your olfactory bulb? And the researches were robust, I was really impressed. I thought, okay, calming, I believe it. Now what about Frankincense, Sandalwood, and Lime? How does that create clarity? And again, I could find supporting evidence in the literature for that. 

So once again, I look at this blend, it makes sense to me and then we start trying to use it and we see how that works. And the nice thing about those wellness solutions on there is it's not just one suggestion, this is a whole PowerPoint kind of teaching me how to think about the oil, how to use the oil, situations it would be useful in, where to apply it on the body. We were actually able then to experiment with it. So I love the individual testimony that says, "This oil really works for me." I don't always feel like that's enough to really convince other people that, that is what's gonna work. And that's always enough for me when I hear it from someone, so I feel really good when we can actually look at what's in these blends and then go into trusted sources and understand how they work. 

So along this journey I started to look at the chemical composition of these oils, and all of that is also on doTERRA. There's a, I don't know, maybe 20 different eBooks? If you type in eBooks to the search bar at the top of the website, you can find an eBook on almost anything, an eBook on aromatherapy, an eBook on sleep, a lot of topics that we need. There they also go into detail into the chemical composition of these oils and when I started to look at the sesquiterpenes and some of these chemicals, I really started to understand and believe the effect of these oils. So, really excited about InTune. 

The final blend that I wanna talk about is one that's really near and dear to my heart. I used to run an ICU, I did that for about 20 years, and I really didn't sleep much at all. I would almost get into a panic after having been up for 24 hours knowing that I still needed to get a little sleep, come back, be really alert. I'd panic about how to get good sleep. So I was always looking for natural solutions. One of the things in that Discover Solution section under resources on the website are these wellness topics, and sleep is a big one. So there are PowerPoint presentations and product information, guides, and there are a ton of studies looking at doTERRA Serenity® Softgels for the support of sleep. So I really got interested in that 'cause sleep deprivation in America is a massive issue. They say over a third of Americans aren't getting enough sleep and that has effects on our health. In terms of attention and how do I drive, even. So I think this is affecting our society in a huge way, not just us sleep-deprived doctors.

I really started to dig into both doTERRA Serenity the oil blend and then the doTERRA Serenity Softgels, and what was exciting is that I knew a little bit about sleep hygiene, but this wasn't like “here's an oil to treat it,” it was like “here is a habit to help you create a more healthful lifestyle.” Habits involve, trigger, routine, reward. So often times I find now if I can use an oil as my trigger, the routine then is what I establish after and then the reward is a good night sleep, and we know from a lot of the supporting evidence around sleep hygiene, those are pretty simple routines. We need to cool the temperature in our room, we need to decrease the blue wavelength light, decrease the sounds that's coming in. We need to really establish a pattern of when we start going to bed, and when we plan to wake up. 

Initially I started with doTERRA Serenity oil, the beginning of that, I used the oil or maybe I put some in a bath. Heat myself, cool myself down, and the oil really started to do something to me physiologically that told me it was time for bed. And then I had to dig into what was in the oil. So in doTERRA Serenity there is Lavender which I had already understood that. Lavender, the linalool in that was going to have a calming effect on my nervous system. There's also Ylang Ylang, there's Cedarwood, there's Chamomile. Everyone knows about chamomile tea, that's known to help us go to sleep. Vanilla, Vetiver, Sandalwood. Vetiver, going back to that is an oil I've really dug into 'cause we have found that to be extremely calming. And I sometimes feel like the world is really stimulating and we can end up in this chronically stressed state, and it's hard to come out of that. 

Often times people say meditate or they say journal, or they have these ideas, but until I put it all together in a habit, I wasn't able to really adopt some of the behaviors that I needed for quality sleep. So, the oil helped me to support that. Then I dug into the doTERRA Serenity Softgels which those also have L-Theanine in them. I went into the doTERRA website, I actually went to the product information page after watching the videos support that they have in the wellness section of the Discover Solutions and the research for the ingredients supporting the use of the ingredients in the doTERRA Serenity Softgels is robust and impressive. 

And in this one I had my own experience. My sleep was so personal to me. I know that it has helped me in an amazing way to get really sound sleep. I now fall asleep pretty easy at night. I sleep through the night and I wake up without an alarm, and if you would ask me how to do that five years ago, I would have had no idea. So it's profoundly affected my sleep, and you know, we talk about the effects of sleeplessness on people and the stress associated with that has a terrible effect on our bodies. That's a whole topic in and of itself. And they actually cover a lot of that in the wellness topic on the website, it's really helpful. 

I feel a responsibility when I learn these things and I use the oils and I see a positive effect in my life and in my family's life. I feel a responsibility to share what I've learned and this section of the website gives me a really nice gift to give to other people, a really clear way for them to understand how and why the oils work. A lot of my friends are doctors and nurses and they want to know the evidence. They want to know a real, trusted site to go to be sure that these are working the way that we say they're going to. Rather than pull up some app on my phone or pull out some book, I actually go to, and I go straight to Discover Solutions and that's where I start. And just like me, it becomes a kind of fun journey of discovery as we look at what's in these oils and what the evidence is to support them. So, it took me a while to dig into the website. Everything I need is there, and I encourage you to start your own journey of discovery 'cause there's so much to support your health and so much good evidence to back that up, thank you.

doTERRA: Thanks for joining us and congratulations on living a healthier lifestyle with essential oils. If you liked what you heard today, rate, review, and subscribe wherever you listen. Also, if you want to try any of the products you learned about go to, or find a Wellness Advocate near you to place an order today.

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