Holistic Health and Holistic Aromatherapy

A holistic perspective as it pertains to health has gained momentum in recent years. A major factor in this development has come from National Institutes of Health’s research into the mind-body connection. This new research has focused an inquisitive light onto an old theory about how the body works.

With this in mind, the most radically affected branch of medicine seems to be in the treatment of cancer. Faced with dire outcomes inspired individuals and many physicians investigated and encourage holistic principles with positive results.

All that being said, what is holistic health? It is an all-inclusive way of looking at health. In treatment it would mean giving credence and equal billing to the mind and spirit as well as the physical body.

While this sounds radical to some and common sense to others it is not a new concept. Ancient cultures were more prone to believe in these terms than not and even into the early 1900’s these principles were generally accepted.

The modern industrial age seems to have permeated our psyche somehow so that we began to see ourselves as complex ‘mechanical’ beings. The care of the injured since World War I also seems to have sped up the necessity and to ‘fix and repair’ quickly. Hospitals and medical schools issued in a new era of medicine teaching and treating growing urban populations in a methodical organized way.

In contrast holistic health care requires investigation into the whole person. This would mean looking at the role of the mind, body and spirit in regard to each health issue. This turns the focus of identifying and treating illness toward complexity instead of simplicity. Holistic healing is multi-focal and by nature it is individualistic. It also is extremely interesting, enlightening and can be beautifully blended with all of the things that we have gleaned from ancient and modern dialogs about health.

Holistic Aromatherapy has also been in existence since ancient times. The Egyptians knew and recorded more information about essential oils than any other ancient culture that we have knowledge of. They distilled and used plant materials for perfuming and holistic purposes extensively.

The practice of using plant oils to aid in the healing process works well with holistic health protocols because plant oils are complex in nature. They work multi-dimensionally. Plant oils are highly compatible with human physiology. They speak the same language.

We are all familiar with lavender oil as a calmative, but lavender oil also has the ability to change its nature and become a stimulant. It is able to discern which attribute is most needed and adapts to those needs.

In order for Aromatherapy to be useful holistically it must be able to address the mind and spirit as well as the body. We know that plant oils have medicinal capabilities of being anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and a multitude of other attributes, but how could simple plant oil affect your mind or your spirit?

Mind and spirit could be described as the deepest oldest part of our consciousness. They are concepts that feel almost untouchable in many ways yet; as we wonder where these vital forces receive direction we must look to the limbic system of the brain for much of the answer.

Some of the oldest sensory memory in our physiology makes detection and translation of aroma possible and at the forefront of data that the body finds imperative for survival. The plain fact of the matter is that our physiology is such that we are highly equipped to sense through smell. Aroma is subtle by definition yet we know practically, that aroma can illicit instantaneous and surprisingly complex responses.

A qualified Holistic Aromatherapist will be aware of and knowledgeable in preparation of essential oil products and their proper use. The holistic facilitator will listen to the issues a client brings and together they will explore the relationship of the mind, body and spirit. After careful consideration and research, a blend of essential oils would be prepared to holistically address the client’s health before the next session. The aromatherapist would explain the attributes of the oils chosen and a plan for use and client feedback would be chosen further engaging the client in the wellness process.

Treating the whole person is the key to any effective wellness plan.

— Kim Krost, RA, BS, LMTI