Can I Be Allergic to Essentail Oils?

Q. Can someone be allergic to an essential oil?

A. The simple answer is NO.  If you are using 100% pure, therapeutic grade essential oils, such as those from Young Living, it is impossible to be allergic even if someone is allergic to the plant from which the essential oil is distilled.  Why?

Because essential oils do not contain proteins, polypeptides or amino acids, therefore they cannot be allergenic.  If a person is allergic to a particular plant, the essential oil contains no nitrogen molecules which causes the allergy.  Therefore, essential oils are not allergenic.

However, essential oils like the citrus oils are considered "absolutes" and may be allergenic.

Robert Tisserand, aromatherapy author and educator wrote:

"There is no documented evidence of inhaled allergy to any essential oil, the only existing evidence relates to [synthetic] fragrances."

If a person is experiencing an allergic reaction to an essential oil, here are two reasons why:

  1. The essential oil contains synthetic additives of which causes the allergic reaction

  2. Your body is reacting to the strong detoxification effects of the essential oil

According to David Stewart Ph.D., D.N.M.,

"occasionally someone may react in an unpleasant manner to an essential oil, but such a reaction is never allergenic. It is impossible for an essential oil to cause an allergy,"

These "reactions" are actually a good sign that the body is attempting to get rid of toxins. Attempts to "stop" the symptoms, stop the body's detoxification process.

Allergic reactions almost always worsen with repeated exposure. Given enough time and cleansing of the system, detox reactions to essential oils will cease, and the oils that caused the reaction will no longer do so.

Stewart suggests that when a detox reaction happens, stop using the oil for a time or reduce the frequency and/or quantity of use in order to slow down the release of toxins. Focus on cleansing procedures with lots of water, fiber and fresh foods to flush out the toxins. A cleansing fast and enemas are usually helpful. As you gradually use the oils again, the toxins will eventually be flushed out and you won't have unpleasant reactions anymore.