The name of this essential oil may sound a bit funny but when it comes to fighting the wee beasties of Sniffle Season, Cajuput is all business. Cajuput, Melaleuca leucadendron L. Var, cajuputi, is a botanical cousin to Tea Tree, Melaleuca alternifolia. These cousins share many of the same beastie fighting qualities but smell quite different. Cajuput doesn’t possess the highly antiseptic scent of tea tree. Its scent is much fresher with only a hint of its cousin’s antiseptic smell. Imagine eucalyptus meets tea tree.
This uplifting essential oil has traditionally been used in Cuban folk medicine for its anti-infective antidysenteric, antihelminthic and antiherpetic actions. Cajuput Essential Oil is known to be: analgesic, anthelmintic, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antispasmodic and astringent, bactericide, diaphoretic and stimulant. Topically, Cajuput essential oil is used as an astringent, for colds, headaches, joint pain, rheumatism, skin infection, skin mites etc. Aromatically, cajuput is used for colds, expectorant, headaches, etc.
A 2015 research study in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the official journal of the International Society for Complementary Medicine Research, states in its conclusions, “In this study, we found that M. cajuputi extracts possess antioxidant and antibacterial activities. The results revealed that both extracts had significant antioxidant and free radical-scavenging activity. Both extracts had antibacterial activity against S. aureus, S. epidermidis, and B. cereus. The antioxidant and antimicrobial activities could be attributed to high flavonoid and phenolic contents identified using GC/MS and LC/MS. Therefore, M. cajuputi could be an excellent source for natural antioxidant and antibacterial agents for medical and nutraceutical applications.”
Nazeh M. Al-Abd, Zurainee Mohamed Nor, Marzida Mansor, Fadzly Azhar, M. S. Hasan and Mustafa Kassim. Antioxidant, antibacterial activity, and phytochemical characterization of Melaleuca cajuputi extract. Al-Abd et al. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2015) 15:385, DOI 10.1186/s12906-015-0914-y, https://doi.org/10.1186/s12906-015-0914-y
With its proven antioxidant and antimicrobial activities, Cajuput is an excellent essential oil to use in your fight against the sniffle bugs. If however, you find yourself suffering the effects of the Sniffle Season wee beasties, you are sure to love the eucalyptus-like aromatic qualities of Cajuput essential oil to help ease your respiratory and other symptoms. Applied topically in a carrier oil or lotion, Cajuput essential oil is also known to help aches and pains.
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Here’s to your health and happiness!