I was going to just do a simple tea-review and call it a day, but the concept of putting essential oils in tea was a very interesting concept to me and needed more thorough examining. I received 2 essential oils, Lime and Nutmeg Vitality, from Patty, the owner of Lake View Essential Oils. I did really enjoy the two flavors and they brought a new dimension of tea flavors that I did not expect. But let’s continue to dig deeper into the idea of teas and essential oils and see what we find.
An Overview of my Experience:
Lime Vitality: This essential oil was sent with a recommendation to add it to one of the tea samples she sent, or with water. I chose to add a few drops of the oil to the green tea and see how it would go. It was quite interesting to taste, to be honest. It added a different element to the tea, a fresh lime element. I could not really taste the green tea anymore but was fully immersed in a world of lime and citrus. It did not seem as if Lime Vitality had many actual health benefits and was simply used for adding variety to your supplements or to up your hydration.
Nutmeg Vitality: This was a very strong and interesting tea mix. I added this essential oil to a chocolate pu’er tea and it added a spicey and odd element to the tea. I feel as if it amplified the taste, but it did seem as if I could not taste the tea as much. But then I did a second steeping of the tea and tasted it before the essential oils were added, and I was able to recognize the taste with and without the essential oils. Some health benefits of this specific essential oil are cognitive function support, immune support, and powerful antioxidants.
Can you use Essential Oils in Tea?
Yes and no. The brand needs to be safe and reliable. Find a safe and reliable essential oil producer. Some companies who sell at Walmart, Wholefood, Meijer…etc, put less essential oils in to produce a higher yield of the product. They also can contain different oils like jojoba oil, coconut oil, and fragrances. There are brands that are FDA safe and safe to ingest. I was given the Vitality brand of Young Living Essential Oils. They have both the normal essential oils and vitality brand (which is the ingestible kind). Young Living boasts that its products only have 100% essential oils. Their vitality brand and normal essential oils are the same, 100% essential oils, but the FDA has consumption rules that oils that are safe to ingest have to be a different line. If you can find a safe essential oil that is 100% essential oils, then yes you can put essential oils in your tea. But please be careful about how you source your oils.
Through my research (and helpful chats with Patty), it was discovered that you can also cook with essential oils! By using a “carrier oil” (basically any oil you are cooking with) and mixing it with the essential oils.
There are also many health benefits from consuming essential oils. But it really does depend on the type of essential oil. Here is a list I found on Healthline about which popular essential oils have certain health benefits:
- Peppermint: used to boost energy and aid digestion
- Lavender: used to relieve stress
- Sandalwood: used to calm nerves and help with focus
- Bergamot: used to reduce stress and improve skin conditions like eczema
- Rose: used to improve mood and reduce anxiety
- Chamomile: used to improve mood and relaxation
- Ylang-Ylang: used to treat headaches, nausea, and skin conditions
- Tea Tree: used to fight infections and boost immunity
- Jasmine: used to help with depression, childbirth, and libido
- Lemon: used to aid digestion, mood, headaches, and more
The Other Side of the Story:
There are many articles that totally support essential oils, but for as many that support, there are also many that argue the use of essential oils for oral consumption. Here are some arguments:
Argument 1: Oil and water do not mix, making an oily slick on the top of your tea. Since the oils do not mix totally (oil and water…never mix) there is the possibility of allergic reactions due to the potency of essential oils
Not all essential oils are safe to consume, which is why Vitality Essential Oils were created and separated safer to consumer essential oils from all essential oils. Many reactions are due to unpure essential oils, but there can also be reactions due to the concentrated nature of essential oils. When ingesting essential oils in teas, there is a slick formed on the top of the tea where all the oil is congregated. Naturally, when you drink anything, the liquid comes in contact with the tongue, mouth, esophagus, and stomach, all vital organs. Essential oils mesh well with fats, forming a homogeneous mixture. So, when drinking highly potent essential oils, the oils can attach themselves to the mucous membrane which lines the above-stated organs, this is where irritation and potential damage could occur. A recommendation would be to test the effects of the oils on a small patch of skin before mass use by consumption or on the skin, for a better idea if the essential oils will react to you.
Argument 2: Oil also does not fully absorb into your body which does not allow the full effects of the essential oils to absorb
AS previously stated, Oils and Water do not mix. When evaluating the bioavailability of CBD oil, it was discovered that only 5-10% of CBD oil is actually being absorbed. The rest is going out of the body with your waste. So, when looking at essential oils, the same logic is applied. Even with the health benefits of essential oils, only a small percentage is actually absorbed into the body.
Argument 3: Potential toxicity due to a child’s inability to digest essential oils, supposedly discovered 30 minutes after consumption
The Western Australian Poisons Information Centre reported an increase in child poisonings due to the consumption of essential oils. It is stated that children’s skin is thinner which can result in more absorption of the essential oils, which supposedly is how children can reach dangerous toxicity levels. For consumption, it is the same logic.
Well, there is an overview of essential oils and using them for consumption. When looking for safe oil blends, make sure that the oil is 100% essential oil. Also, be wise and do not over-consume the essential oils. Moderation (like for anything) is key! Hope you enjoyed this post! Happy Brewing!
“Essential Oils – Health Warning.” Essential Oils – Health Warning, https://healthywa.wa.gov.au/Articles/A_E/Essential-oils.
Halim, Shakera. “The Absorption of CBD: Does CBD Oil Have No Future?” Health Europa, 23 Aug. 2019, https://www.healtheuropa.eu/does-cbd-oil-have-no-future/93031/.
Malkoc, Alen. “Is It Safe to Ingest Essential Oils?” Edens Garden, Edens Garden, 30 Jan. 2018, https://www.edensgarden.com/blogs/news/is-it-safe-to-ingest-essential-oils.
West, Helen. “What Are Essential Oils, and Do They Work?” Healthline, Healthline Media, 30 Sept. 2019, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/what-are-essential-oils#types.