Influenza is more than just “a flu bug.” It is a highly contagious respiratory disease that attacks the nose, throat, and lungs, and can even send a person to the hospital. For the elderly or very young, the flu can be life-threatening.
Between 9.2 and 35.6 million people in the United States get influenza or flu each year.
Unfortunately, flu viruses are constantly changing and mutating, which makes it hard for researchers to develop effective medications.
As a result, natural remedies such as essential oils are increasingly popular.
Traditional healthcare practitioners have used essential oils for centuries to treat many ailments.
Today, essential oils are used in a variety of ways, from making cosmetics smell good to improving quality of life for people with cancer.
Some claims about the effects of essential oils are anecdotal, but many studies are beginning to confirm that some oils can help fight or prevent the flu.
Best essential oils for flu symptoms
Some essential oils, including eucalyptus oil, may help to fight or prevent the flu.
Researchers are exploring both the effectiveness of essential oils for flu treatment and the best ways to apply these oils.
Research has found that the following essential oils have significant anti-influenza virus properties:
Bergamot oil is effective against flu viruses as a vapor after just 10 minutes of exposure.
Eucalyptus oil shows anti-viral activity as a vapor.
Red thyme oil is effective against flu viruses as a liquid phase.
Cinnamon leaf oil also shows antiviral activity as a liquid.
Tea tree oil is effective against the flu virus within 5 to 10 minutes of exposure, as found in another study.
Lemon balm is also shown to prevent the avian influenza (bird flu) virus from reproducing.