In a previous post on functional medicine testing, I discussed the importance of treatment tailored to the individual vs. the individual tailored to a one-sized-fits all approach. I use a combination of naturopathic and functional medicine to address biochemical individuality and get to the root cause of the disease. In this way, I decode which natural treatments and lifestyle practices will be optimal for that individual. You can read more about my approach here.
As a licensed naturopathic doctor, essential oils have become my favorite naturopathic and functional medicine “brain hack.” Throughout the past thirteen years in practice, I have found them indispensable for promoting emotional health and supporting those with psychological disorders. It is my passion to find the specific scent that compliments the individual’s need.
Below is an except from a previous post on the importance of looking at the individual to decode what nutrient and interventions are needed.
A New Measurement for Autism (Metametrix Blog, Dr. Fitzgerald)
One key intervention for both boys that resulted in a significant reduction of behavioral symptoms was the removal of bovine dairy and gluten-containing grains. Both are big problems for many kids with ASD, and their removal is a common first step.
The older boy recently started a trial of high-dose folinic acid (1mg/kg body weight). This intervention appears to have made a remarkable difference in him. Both parents noted that rather quickly after starting, his expressive language greatly improved–he began articulating his needs and desires–in a way he’s never done before. (In all fairness, we cannot rule out benefit from his various other treatments. This trial, like life, wasn’t controlled.)
Given the above history, and the favorable folinic acid trial, is it possible for us to form a hypothesis around a potential causative factor in this case? Yes we can. I strongly suspect that Cerebral Folate Deficiency is an underlying etiologic factor with these boys…
The article continues on to explain how various individual bio-markers are tested to tailor an approach that suited each brother.
The above highlights the importance of not just addressing the cause, or treating symptoms, but addressing the individual. After all, it is more important to know what kind of person has the disease, than what disease has the person.
Fun Fact for Oil Lovers:
A highlight on Rosemary’s ability to boost brain function!
Rosemary EO for mood (Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology )
Here we show for the first time that performance on cognitive tasks is significantly related to concentration of absorbed 1,8-cineole following exposure to rosemary aroma, with improved performance at higher concentrations. Furthermore, these effects were found for speed and accuracy outcomes, indicating that the relationship is not describing a speed-accuracy trade off. The relationships between 1,8-cineole levels and mood were less pronounced, but did reveal a significant negative correlation between change in contentment and plasma 1,8-cineole levels.
Conclusion: These findings suggest that compounds absorbed from rosemary aroma affect cognition and subjective state independently through different neurochemical pathways. (Moss, M. Plasma 1,8-cineole correlates with cognitive performance following exposure to rosemary essential oil aroma (abstract). Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology. February 24, 2012. 2045125312436573.)
Check out my essential oils database for more oil information and how I use them to address mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical health.