Magnolia Flower Restores Self Love...
Is that Even Science?
Have you heard how certain essential oils could inspire, uplift, and ground you? Have you thought to yourself...that is simply nonsense!? How could the physical use of something provide emotional and spiritual support! I know this is something I have thought to myself in the past. So when I read that essential oils extracted from the Magnolia flower could help support feelings of self-love, I was suspicious. However, after doing my own research and using the essential oil for myself, I too fully support the notion that Magnolia stimulates feelings of self-love, peace, and balance.
A little about Magnolia Trees and how essential oils are extracted....
To begin with, I found that the primary chemical constituent in Magnolia is Linalool. I know Linalool to be a powerful chemical used for grounding anxious feelings and calming the body both emotionally and physically. So it was no surprise to me that this would be found in a plant that is traditionally used in Asia to balance the body. doTERRA extracts essential oils from Magnolia plants found in China. An interesting fact about the flower is that the blossoms must be picked in early morning or late afternoon in order for the oil to be available. There are more than 200 varieties of Magnolia plants and the trees can grow up to 100 feet tall. In order to safely harvest the plants and pick the blossoms, farmers in China grow the trees in large wood or cement containers and then re-plant them in a way that allows the plant to grow outward rather than upward. Using this method, the Magnolia trees grow up to 6 feet.
Fear v. Faith and the science behind emotions
The chemistry of Magnolia is similar to Lavender, Ylang Ylang, and Bergamot, which are also often used to calm feelings of anxiousness and restlessness. When looking closely at emotion and thought, everything appears to come down to two bases: Fear and Faith. Fear and faith are both motivators but possess very different energies. How we operate out of fear is motivating but also exhausting. The fear response in the body produces a myriad of excess neuro-chemicals including cortisol and adrenal. Fear causes our body to go into a defensive mode and activates the central nervous system. For example, while touching a hot plate will likely cause the body to react emotionally, mentally, and physically and result in the dropping of the plate, the response is defensive and centered around avoidance. Subsequently, fear shuts down the processes of other organs including the immune system in the body which then leaves the body more vulnerable.
Faith is a motivating energy different from fear in that it centers around love, hope, charity, and trust. Faith is able to see through the problems rather than react with fear and anger. It produces a more positive response which in turn allows the body to relax rather than engage in fight or flight.
Magnolia, being high in Linalool, is a valuable tool for supporting sleep and meditation. It is great for calming fear and inspiring faith. It calms the fear response in the body which would normally produce cortisol and stimulate the central nervous system. In a study I found, Linalool interacted with the glutamatergic system in the brain and caused an inhibitory effect on the glutamine binding which created a calming system at the central nervous system.
What's LOVE got to do with it?
The opposite of self-love is self-hatred or fear which causes a chemical reaction in the body. Linalool in turn causes a different chemical reaction which brings the body and mind back to a place of peace and calm. From my own personal experience, Linalool helps to clear my running thoughts and instead allows me to focus. So how do I use Magnolia as a part of my calming routine? I apply it topically! I apply Magnolia Touch to the pulse points on my neck and on the back of my neck. Not a fan of the smell? There are other oils you can use that contain high amounts of Linalool as well. Lavender, Bergamot, and Ylang Ylang are wonderful for restoring self-love as well and calming the effects of fear.
For those who seek to improve focus and attentiveness for themselves or loved ones (including children), a great companion oil is Lavender! Or for a wonderful Grounding Blend, combine equal parts of Magnolia, Ylang Ylang, and Sandalwood.
Check out my Brain Talk on Magnolia below and Subscribe to my YouTube Channel for many more videos on Essential Oils and the Brain.