Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin), sometimes called “the scent of the sixties,” has a musky, earthy, exotic aroma. In Eastern cultures, it is commonly used around the house to provide general support for health and to help release negative emotions. It is very beneficial for the skin, helping to reduce a wrinkled or chapped appearance. Patchouli is a general tonic that supports the digestive system and soothes occasional queasiness.*
Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin (Blanco) Benth; also patchouly or pachouli) is a species from the genus Pogostemon and a bushy herb of the mint family, with erect stems, reaching two or three feet (about 0.75 metre) in height and bearing small pale pink-white flowers. The plant is native to tropical regions of Asia and is now extensively cultivated in Caribbean countries, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mauritius, Philippines, West Africa and Vietnam. Etymology The scent of patchouli is heavy and strong. It has been used for centuries in perfumes and continues to be so today. The word derives from the Tamil patchai (green), ellai (leaf). In Assamese it is known as xukloti. Extraction of the essential oil Extraction of the essential oil is by steam distillation, requiring the cell walls of the leaves to be first ruptured. This can be achieved by steam scalding, light fermentation, or by drying. Leaves are harvested several times a year, and where dried may be exported for distillation of the oil. Sources disagree over how to obtain the best quality oil. Some claim the highest quality oil is usually produced from fresh leaves, distilled close to the plantation, while others claim baling the dried leaves and allowing them to ferment a little is best. Medicinal uses In several Asian countries, such as Japan and Malaysia, Patchouli is also used as an antidote for venomous snakebites. The plant and oil have a number of claimed health benefits in herbal folk-lore, and its scent is used with the aim of inducing relaxation. Chinese medicine uses the herb to treat headaches, colds, nausea, diarrhea and abdominal pain. Patchouli oil can be purchased from mainstream Western pharmacies and alternative therapy sources as an aromatherapy oil. Perfume uses Patchouli is also in widespread use in modern industry. It is a popular component in perfumes, including more than half of perfumes for men.Patchouli is also an important ingredient in East Asian incense. It is also used as a scent in products like paper towels, laundry detergents, and air fresheners. Two important components of the essential oil is patchoulol and norpatchoulenol. During the 18th and 19th century silk traders from China travelling to the Middle East packed their silk cloth with dried patchouli leaves to prevent moths from laying their eggs on the cloth. Many historians speculate that this association with opulent eastern goods is why patchouli was considered by Europeans of that era to be a luxurious scent. It is said that Patchouli was used in the linen chests of Queen Victoria in this way.
Patchouli has an approximate ORAC of 494,271 (TE/L). TE/L is expressed as micromole Trolox equivalent per liter.
How to use: For dietary, aromatic, or topical use. When using as a supplement, dilute one drop in 4 fl. oz. of liquid such as goat’s or rice milk.
Possible skin sensitivity. Dilution not required; suitable for all but the most sensitive skin. Generally safe for children over 2 years of age.
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* This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Item No. 3608, 15 ml – Patchouli Essential Oil