• Beth

Lemon Essential Oil and Liver Detoxification

Updated: Dec 20, 2020

A Drop of Oil in a Glass of Water

Lemon essential oil is nontoxic, provided it is organic and free of pesticides. Its taste is relatively mild and non-invasive. I personally prefer lemon essential oil over using lemon slices or squeezed lemon in my water. I find it has a much more pleasant flavour. It is especially important to use only organic lemon oil as all citrus oils are cold pressed, and if there are pesticides on the peel they will directly flow into the essential oil.

The experiment is simple: 1 to 3 drops of lemon oil are added to a glass of water and stirred. It does not matter whether the oil is still dispersed while drinking the water or if the oil has partially accumulated again on the surface. Some of the oil will most likely remain in the water glass. In any case, enough essential oil will reach the stomach and ultimately the liver, producing its balanced inhibition and the induction of liver detoxification enzymes.

The objective of this little experiment is to begin learning the range of sensations and physiological responses we receive from ingesting essential oils. Over time this will create awareness of the effects essential oils can have on physiological systems such as the Neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS - which is a group of problems that occurs in a newborn who was exposed to opioid drugs for a length of time while in the mother's womb) the digestive tract, or the lymphatic system.

Caution First Time Users:

Ingestion lemon oil is known as an entirely harmless exercise to many aromatherapy users. However, it is important that first time-users explore this application simply with 1 drop. Essential oils are potent, concentrated messengers from the plant world. For those not used to the detoxification effect, the oil may trigger slight anxiety due to unfamiliar sensations. It is important to proceed cautiously in the quest for experience.

Essential Oils and Phase 1 Liver Detoxification

Many substances foreign to our body (xenobiotics) are oily and not soluble in water and tend to accumulate in body tissues, especially adipose tissue (the tissue that stores fat). As we have seen evolution has generated a mechanism by which these substances can be removed from the organism. For anyone interested in optimum health, this mechanism can be employed to prevent the accumulation of toxic levels of the xenobiotics (foreign substances in our body). It is done simply by ingesting an essential oil such as lemon oil, which will trigger the detoxification process.

The process starts with Phase 1, in which the essential molecules or toxins are made water soluble and more responsive to further elimination reactions by Phase II enzymes.

Most drugs must pass through the liver, which is the primary site for drug metabolism.

The liver's primary mechanism for metabolizing drugs is via a specific group of cytochrome P-450 enzymes which can catalyze almost any reaction a compound can undergo. These enzymes are located in liver cells, the gut mucous membrane, in smaller amounts in airway mucosa, and in the kidneys, skin, and brain. These enzyme systems are are substances and processes that originate from within a system such as an organism, tissue, or cell and dietary substances foreign to our body. The fact that they also metabolize drugs is a consequence of their broad nonselective reactivity.

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