Tuesday, January 17, 2012
If essential oils are so great at being anti-oxidants, why don't we use them more in that capacity?
Although cinnamon, clove, and rosemary essential oils (to name a few) are good anti-oxidants, there is some dispute as to whether they are better than BHA and BHT. (Özcan, M., & Arslan, D. (2011). Antioxidant effect of essential oils of rosemary, clove and cinnamon on hazelnut and poppy oils. Food Chemistry, 129(1), 171-174, and other studies). Click here for more information on rosemary essential oil as an anti-oxidant.
The other problem with adding essential oils as anti-oxidants is that you have to have the fragrance that comes along with them. This is fine if you like the smell of lavender or sage or rosemary, but what if you hate those fragrances? What if you don't want the possible psychological effects of those essential oils, or what if you're going into the desert and the combination that works best for your shampoo or conditioner bars is almost the same as the combination that works to annoy snakes?
Finally, essential oils need to be respected for their effects - they might make us more or less alert, more or less drowsy, offer us relief from pain, penetrate our skin - which means they might not be the best choice as an anti-oxidant for our products.
Rancidity: A primer
Mechanisms of rancidity