Digestive Massage with Essential Oils

Click image to enlarge.

Instructions for self digestive massage:

This is a treatment you can easily give yourself whenever you feel to. It can help with digestive problems such as IBS, bloating, constipation, general discomfort, loss of appetite and digestive anxiousness*.

You can use just olive oil, but if you would like essential oils to enhance the treatment then see the suggested blends below.

Lay down in a comfortable supported position. This is really important, you want to make sure you’re able to completely relax, it could be on your bed, sofa, a massage table or on the floor if you can support your body enough. Have a steady place ready for the oil to stand that you can reach and it’s not likely to be knocked over and wear clothes that can reveal your tummy area. You may need a towel under you incase the oil runs, blankets to keep you cosy and pillows or cushions to support your body (for your head or under knees).

Once you’re set, place one hand on your heart to help settle your body and use the other hand to massage the oil or ‘digestive blend’ around your tummy.  Do this in small, gentle, anti-clockwise circles, initially just to apply the oil. Then you will follow the route of your digestive system, which goes clockwise, but make your massage movements anti-clockwise… begin at the stomach, just under your ribcage, then around the centre of your tummy covering the ‘small intestine’ area, gradually move down towards the start of the ‘ascending colon’, follow this up the right side of your body, then across the body as it becomes the ‘transverse colon’ and finally to the ‘descending colon’ down the left side of your body. You may feel to repeat, to focus on certain areas and to take a moment to rest once complete.

I actually love doing this before I go to sleep at night and would love to be able to continue laying there until I fall asleep but I have to get up to wash the oil off my hands, especially if I’ve used an essential oil blend.

*The massage is a support, not a longterm cure for symptoms, but it can help relieve and clear in the moment. You should consult your doctor if symptoms persist.

Here are some blend suggestions, they are also available to purchase as a ‘Bespoke Blend’ designed for your personal situation:

Clearing digestive blend (strong):

Gentle digestive blend:

Anxiety digestive blend:

  • Olive oil, 10mls (you can use other nut, seed or fruit oils such as almond or apricot oil)
  • Lavender essential oil, 2 drops
  • Neroli essential oil, 2 drops
  • Can be used in pregnancy, with children and on sensitive or elderly skin, but only use 1 drop of each essential oil instead of 2).

Digestive massage and other treatments are available to book with me at Brighton & Hove Therapies in Brighton, UK. Please call to arrange: 07828954020.

 

How to make Fresh Mint Tea and Appreciate the Benefits of Essential Oils

Fresh mint tea

I recently ran a workshop and used a mint plant to illustrate what essential oils are and where they come from.  In the case of peppermint the essential oil is held in the leaves of the plant, and literally brushing your hand over the leaves is enough to release the essential oil, which in turn releases the scent.  Peppermint is a great oil that really supports digestion and sometimes just the initial smell from the plant can stimulate our appetite, make our mouth water and our tummy rumble as our body releases various digestive enzymes in preparation for eating.

Fresh Mint Tea

A cup of mint tea is a great way to use peppermint regularly to improve your digestion.  Dried herbs which are usually used in herbal tea bags will contain a very small amount of essential oil which is why they don’t smell as strong as when fresh. So making a pot of mint tea using the fresh leaves from the plant will ensure you experience more of the benefits of the essential oils.

Fresh mint tea with flowering top

If you don’t happen to have a mint plant in your garden or close by to harvest from, you can buy a bag of fresh mint from most supermarkets, or a pot from a garden centre would be handy for regular use. All you need to do is pluck a few leaves from the stems, give them a rinse and pop them into a tea pot. I like mine strong so I usually use around 10-20 leaves, then add boiling water and let it brew for at least 5 minutes.  It’s very refreshing, and I’m sure you will appreciate the difference compared with using a peppermint tea bag -I’m really not a fan of tea bags, but if it’s all you can get hold of, it’s still worth making it in a tea pot, because the boiling water releases the essential oils from the plant material in the steam, and once you have the lid on the tea pot you capture the precious oils to enjoy more fully when you pour.  It also feels much more nurturing to have made a pot, I like the ritual of making the tea, taking the time to let it brew, choosing the cup, and I love drinking it when the temperature is just perfect.

Photo care of Self Love Affair
Photo care of Self Love Affair
When I go out to a restaurant or café, I often ask for a fresh mint tea at the end of the meal, as it supports digestion.  Even if they don’t advertise it on the menu, they will usually have some fresh mint in the kitchen and are usually willing to make up a pot for me -so much nicer than a tea bag.

The essential oil is much more potent than the leaves of the plant, so if you want a more powerful effect to support more serious digestive complaints you can actually buy capsules that contain peppermint essential oil in, which can be very effective.  Peppermint tea will still be very supportive for conditions such as constipation, IBS, bloating, indigestion and you can actually find some brands that are enhanced with the essential oil too.

Some loose leaf mint teas I recommend trying out, as they taste really fresh and potent:

www.loveinacup.co.uk

www.summerdownmint.com

www.suki-tea.com

Some other delicious teas to support you…

Screenshot 2016-05-14 11.38.49

Lemongrass Tea

For a lovely, light, slightly sweet tea try this recipe for lemongrass tea by Thaïs from her beautiful blog Spice & Smile , again you will be benefiting from the lemongrass essential oils in this and it’s a great one to help with bloating.

Lavender or Chamomile tea

To support winding down in the evenings you can make a fresh floral tea with flowers from lavender and chamomile plants as they are all soothing and calming in effect.

 Rose petal tea

A few rose petals mixed with a fresh mint tea is a particularly good combination, a couple of rose buds is enough to compliment the mint, or half a tea spoon of petals. Make sure the rose petals or buds are suitable for consumption and for use in tea. You can purchase the roses and other herbs for use in tea from Fiona Pierce at www.loveinacup.co.uk

Fresh mint & rose bud tea

Thanks to Valquiria Oliveira at Self Love Affair for the beautiful photo, showing the loving ritual that making tea can be.

For some gorgeous inspiration on cleaning your tea pot & making yourself shine, read this beautiful blog: Aladdin’s Lamp – Cleaning a Tea Pot.