Sunday, September 28, 2014

How Trees Help Your Immune Cells

One friendly cell you want patrolling your tissues is the NK Cell (Natural Killer). It is a type of white blood cell, and it protects you by killing cancerous cells, and virally infected cells1.

It is in our best interest to keep our NK cells healthy and active. Some ways to do that are to eat well, exercise, and keep stress under control. Another way to stimulate NK cells is to spend time in the forest, breathing in phytoncides from trees (wood essential oils)2,3.

Not everybody lives near a forest.

However, we still can bring the forest indoors. The best way is to diffuse use high-quality essential oils in an atomizing diffuser. This will bring the benefits of the forest into your home, office, or gym. It smells great, too.


A notable phytoncide is Pinene. It is a main component in White Fir oil, Frankincence oil, and Cypress oil. It is also in Eucalyptus oil, but in a less-prominent amount.

Other notable phytoncides are: Methyl thujate, hinokitiol, thujic acid, and thujaplicin found in Arborvitae (thuja plicata) wood oil; and Alpha cedrene, and cedrol found in Cedarwood oil.

Bring the forest air indoors, and give your NK cells a kick.

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When selecting essential oils, be sure to choose oils that are only steam distilled (not extracted with solvents), and that the plants were grown in their native habitat e.g., frankincense grown in an arid climate. The plants should be grown without pesticides or herbicides.

I choose doTERRA essential oils for these reasons, and because their Arborvitae oil is distilled from the wood, not the leaves (which contain the neurotoxin thujone).

If you want to know more about using essential oils, please contact me, or use my link to get essential oils for yourself: Here.
I will be very pleased to hear from you and to help you get started with oils.


References:

3. Li Q., et al. (2010). A day trip to a forest park increases human natural killer activity and the expression of anti-cancer proteins in male subjects. Biol Regul Homeost Agents, 24(2), 157-65.

Tags:
Immune response, immune system, immunity, immunology, essential oils, stress, cancer, phytochemicals, alpha pinene, beta pinene, health, wellness