Immortelle essential oil, symbol of love and sustainability

What are the benefits of Italian helichrysum?

The golden yellow flowers of the immortal were appreciated by the ancients, the Greeks made it the symbol of love . It was reputed to heal the wounds of warriors and to clear the bronchi. Fallen into disuse in the last century, barely good at burning pig bristles or making fires, even considered invasive, we are now rediscovering its exceptional properties . The name “Immortelle” would come from the exceptional longevity of these gold-colored flowers which do not fade, even in dried bouquets.

A little bit of mythology

According to the Odyssey ( Homer ), Ulysses , the hero of Greek mythology, was shipwrecked on an island. He eventually met a woman named Nausicaa (daughter of the king of the Pheacians, who took in Odysseus by order of the goddess Athena ) who was almost as beautiful as a goddess. In conclusion, her beauty secret was the use of Italian Helichrysum oil .

Greek mythology associates the immortal with the god Apollo , who is said to sometimes wear his yellow flowers to remind everyone of his own immortality.

Indeed, Apollo wore a tiara of these flowers that are sometimes nicknamed immortal when he made his oracles, but also to affirm and recall his status of being immortal. It is well known that on the heads of the gods the flowers never wither. Also, what better than the immortal to ensure this function? But this is all the more relevant because the helichrysum is called immortal because, once cut, it still seems endowed with its living forces. It is for this reason that we will have made wreaths of helichrysum flowers to place them on the heads of statues representing the deities. A use reported by Pliny and Dioscorides and, long before, by Theophrastus. According to him, the crown of helichrysum brought glory and good fame.

Helios , the sun, also seems to be written in his name. As for the second fraction of the name of helichrysum, it comes from a Greek word – chrysos – which means golden and sacred. When we know that this plant was one of the many attributes of a sun god crossing the skies perched on a flaming chariot, we better understand to which dimension the name of helichrysum refers.

A little history

Pliny the Elder (1st century) reports in his Natural History that the immortelle resolves hardness and inflammation, relieves burns in local application, lumbar pain and snakebites by mouth.

The air was also disinfected with the everlasting flower during the Spanish flu epidemic.

In China, it also symbolizes the memory of the dead whose memory remains long after their death. As for the United Kingdom, the Immortal was indeed used in 1952 as an ornament for the crown of Elizabeth II of England as a symbol of sustainability for her reign.

What are the pharmacological properties of Immortelle flower essential oil ?

Property on blood circulation:

The essential oil of helichrysum has indeed a major vascular impact , it is THE plant of blood circulation for its anticoagulant, blood thinning (active in arterial microcirculation), vascular spasmolytic (vaso-coronaro-dilator), pre -infarction and fibrinolytic .

Anti-hematoma property:

Several clinical studies have shown during cosmetic or plastic surgery of the face, neck or thorax a reduction in edema and bruising . The curcumene has a hemostatic action, it eliminates that fibrin clots.

Endowed with a powerful anti hematoma activity (superior to that of arnica by local route), the anti-ecchymotic properties of this essential oil are explained in particular by the presence of betadiones (italidiones I, II, III) which facilitate their ultra-rapid absorption by a fibrin chelation mechanism. The anti-hematoma properties of betadiones would thus be linked to the transition from the dionic form to the enolic form (balance between the two forms).

Healing property:

Healing skin , immortelle acts on recent and old hematomas, as well as with wounds, but also on wounds or surgical interventions.

Anti-inflammatory property:

Widely demonstrated in acute or chronic inflammation tests in vitro or in vitro , everlasting flower essential oil inhibits cyclooxygenase and 5-lipoxygenase pathways, as well as pro-inflammatory factors like interleukin (IL -1b) and TNF-α factors.

Antimicrobial property:

Antibacterial , the essential oil notably reduces the resistance of bacteria ( Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Enterobacter aerogenes, Escherichia coli, as well as Acinetobacter baumanii ) to antibiotics such as β-lactams or quinolones by inhibiting the efflux pumps which reject the drug out of the body. the bacteria. Immortelle is also antiviral ; an ethereal extract of the essential oil is active against the herpes virus in an in vitro test . Its antifungal effect , meanwhile, has been demonstrated on several strains of Candida albicans.

Other properties:

  • Mucolytic, anti catarrhal, expectorant
  • Mild hepatic insufficiency
  • Antidiabetic
  • Cholesterol lowering
  • Anti-aging, the essential oil of Helichrysum italicum inhibits the activities of collagenase and elastase, effect comparable to that of oleanolic acid, pentacyclic triterpene protecting the skin
  • Hypo-allergenic
  • Antiproliferative
  • Antimutagenic, especially mixed in equal parts between Helichrysum italicum, Ledum groenlandicum, Ravensara aromatica

Does immortelle essential oil require precautions for use?

  • Contraindicated in pregnant (abortive) or breastfeeding women
  • Reserved for adults
  • Do not swallow
  • Never exceed the dosage of 3 drops twice a day for external use (i.e. no more than 6 drops)
  • Avoid in patients on anticoagulants, interactions likely with antiaggregants
  • No prolonged use
  • Do not diffuse, inhale, or put in the bath
  • Prohibited for internal use
  • Containing ketones and sesquiterpenes, risk of self-toxicity by molecular interactions
  • Forbidden to animals
  • Dermocaustic, pure skin repellant, dilution required
  • Do not combine with cortisone, risk of drug interaction, ask your pharmacist for advice
  • Caution in people with autoimmune diseases, epilepsy, asthma, the elderly or with Parkinson’s, as well as people with neurosensitivity
  • Risk of neurotoxicity which may induce epileptic seizures at high doses
  • Cutaneous use only recommended

 

Medical bibliographic sources and clinical trials :

 

Clementine. M.
Naturopath – Aromatherapist / Herbalist – Phytotherapist
Consultant in Clinical Phyto-aromatherapy and Ethnomedicine

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