Monthly Archives: February 2018

Explore the Benefits of Essential Oils

EssentialOilsSusan Brown Health and Wellness Editor



Valued throughout the ages for therapeutic purposes, spiritual enhancement, beauty care and food preparation, the popularity of essential oils continues unabated today, especially in holistic and traditional medicine. The popularity and use of aromatic plant essences can be traced back thousands of years. References to essential oils can be found in Egyptian hieroglyphics, ancient Chinese medical texts, sacred 5,000-year old Ayurvedic medical literature, and the writings of early Greek and Roman physicians. Numerous biblical mentions appear in both the Old and New Testament. While western medicine has been slow to accept the time honored wisdom of these herbal and botanical remedies, interest in the healing properties of plant oils has soared in recent years, as the use of essential oils becomes more prominent in western culture.

Essential oils are concentrated volatile aromatic compounds or essences extracted from plant seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers and leaves. These small organic compounds are called volatile because they tend to quickly change from their solid or liquid state to a gas at room temperature. This means that they can rapidly move through the air and directly interact with nasal olfactory sensors, making them ideal for aromatherapy use. The healing powers of essential oils have withstood the test of time with proven efficacy and effectiveness. In countries such as Germany, France and England essential oil remedies are prescribed by physicians and are readily available at pharmacies across Europe. Especially valuable as antiseptics, research studies have shown essential oils to have numerous powerful healing properties with a wide range of emotional and physical wellness applications, including infections, pain, anxiety, depression, nausea, stress relief, and sleep issues.

While over 3,000 varieties of volatile aromatic compounds have been identified, each botanical species has unique and specific benefits. Essential oils may be applied topically, inhaled and in some cases, ingested. The application method depends upon the oil, the condition to be treated and the desired effect. Wound care, for example, involves topical application. For effects on mood, inhalation might be preferred. The addition of oils to bathwater involves both inhalation and topical absorption. A diffuser is the preferred way to scent a room with an essential oil, such as lavender, to enhance relaxation and support sleep. Dry evaporation involves scenting a cotton ball with several drops of oil and leaving it in your immediate vicinity for continuous exposure. A few drops of oil may also be added to a water spritzer and sprayed into the air to deodorize a room or set a mood. Peppermint, for example, would stimulate alertness.

Essential oils derived directly from nature are intended to provide pure, uncompromised healing to induce harmony of the mind, body and spirit.

An essential oil home remedy kit might include:

Carrier oil – While some essential oils may be applied directly to the skin, other highly concentrated oils require dilution in a carrier oil before application. Jojoba, sweet almond, or coconut oil work well as carrier oils. As a general rule, three drops of pure essential oil should be added to one teaspoon of carrier oil before application.

Lavender – Lavender oil has a wide range of applications. It has antibacterial, antiviral, anti-fungal and anti-itch properties. Lavender is used to calm anxiety, tame stress, support sleep and improve mood. A natural pain reliever, it’s useful for treating minor burns, cuts, scrapes, bruises and insect bites.

Lemon – Lemon oil has multiple benefits, including air purification and healthy respiratory function. Lemon oil may be mixed with raw honey to calm a sore throat, or with tea tree oil for household cleaning. Diffused lemon oil is uplifting and energizing and has been shown to aid positive mood.

Peppermint – Peppermint oil has been studied intensively and has been shown to boost positivity and invigorate the mind and senses. Peppermint is used to freshen breath, alleviate occasional stomach upset, and promote healthy respiratory function.

Melaleuca or tea tree oil – A must-have for every home care kit, well researched tea tree is one of the most versatile and widely used oils. Well known for its cleansing properties and rejuvenating effects on the skin, it promotes healthy immune function and acts as an effective antimicrobial and antifungal agent.

Frankincense – This earthy, uplifting oil has anti-inflammatory, anti-aging and potential anti-cancer properties. When applied topically, frankincense promotes healthy, younger looking skin. Frankincense boosts immunity and helps to fight infections, and when used aromatically, frankincense reduces anxiety and promotes peacefulness and calmness.

Oregano – As a potent and powerful plant-derived antifungal and antibacterial, oregano is useful for treating minor infections, toe nail fungus, athlete’s foot, and gingivitis. Taken internally, oregano supports healthy digestion and respiratory function.

Rosemary – Rosemary oil acts as a mild stimulant that helps to increase alertness and promote mental clarity and concentration. Helpful for stress management, it eases muscle spasms and relieves pain from arthritis, sprains, strains and fibromyalgia.

Chamomile – Chamomile essential oil has powerful anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. Nicknamed the “plant’s physician” because of its positive effect on plants growing nearby, chamomile has a calming and soothing effects on the skin, mind and body.

Professional Supplement Center carries a variety of essential oils, carrier oils and aromatherapy diffusers:

Jojoba Oil - OrganicJojoba Oil by Now Foods: An ideal carrier oil, this shelf stable, pure, certified organic multipurpose oil is commonly used to promote healthy hair and skin. Expeller-pressed and hexane free.


Lavender OilLavender oil by Now Foods: This 100% pure lavender essential oil is steam distilled from flowering tops. Its floral aroma is wonderful for soothing, normalizing and balancing.


Organic Frankincense...Organic Frankincense Essential Oil by Dr. Mercola: This rare, wildcrafted oil is steam distilled from the gum of boswellia trees. Utilized for emotional, spiritual and physical wellbeing, this oil mixes will with lemon, orange and lavender, and is safe for use around children and pets.

Orange Oil - OrganicOrange Oil by Now Foods: This 100% pure, certified organic oil is cold pressed from fresh fruit peel. When diffused, it provides a refreshing, uplifting, and invigorating environment. Taken daily it promotes healthy immune function and provides an energizing boost when inhaled.

Organic Oil of...Oil of Oregano by Natural Factors: This certified organic, wild crafted Mediterranean oregano oil is hand harvested and guaranteed to provide a minimum of 80% carvacrol, the active ingredient with a wide range of health benefits including antibiotic and antioxidant activity.


Willow Forest...Willow Forest Ultrasonic Essential Oil Diffuser by Greenair: A customer favorite, this quiet ultrasonic diffuser delivers the natural benefits of essential oils in a powerful and efficient way. Choose rotating or fixed color for creative ambiance. Runs for up to six hours. Automatic shutoff. Available in white or black.

Amber Glass Serene...Amber Glass Serene Living Ultrasonic Diffuser by Greenair: Suitable for home of office, this hand blown glass diffuser utilizes high-frequency ultrasonic electrical vibrations to create an ultrafine aromatherapy mist. Also available Marble Blue and Obsidian.

How Do I Choose and Use Essential Oils?
Essential oil.
What are Essential Oils?
Essential oils continue to grow in popularity.


All About Vitamin B6

B6_VitaminJacquie Eubanks RN BSN

One of eight in the family of water-soluble B-complex vitamins, vitamin B6 is an essential nutrient not synthesized or stored by the body. As a necessary coenzyme for numerous bodily functions, vitamin B6 must be obtained through a healthy diet or supplementation, as unused water-soluble vitamins are excreted daily through urination. There are several forms of this very versatile vitamin, some of which require conversion by the liver into a bioavailable form. Pyridoxal 5’ phosphate (PLP or P5P), a metabolically active, readily absorbable form that doesn’t require conversion, allows the full health benefits of vitamin B6 to be quickly and easily utilized by the body.

All B-complex vitamins aid in protein and fat metabolism, as well as the conversion of carbohydrates into glucose utilized for energy production. Found largely in protein-rich foods, whole grains and some vegetables and nuts, vitamin B6 status can impact both physical and mental health. Because B6 is involved in numerous enzymatic reactions, adequate levels are key for promoting and maintaining overall wellness, as well as the cognitive health of aging brains. Studies have found that the combination of vitamins B6, B12 and folate may play a role in slowing cognitive decline and age-related memory loss, suggesting that these vitamins may also decrease the risk of depression, stroke and Alzheimer’s disease.

Potential benefits of vitamin B6 supplementation include:

Brain health – Necessary for proper brain development in children and for healthy brain function in people of all ages, poor vitamin B6 status may play a role in cognitive decline, as studies show associations between higher serum vitamin B6 concentrations and better memory test scores. Per the National Institutes of Health (NIH), B vitamins, particularly B6, B12 and folate are widely believed to be protective against Alzheimer’s disease and age-related loss of cognitive function.

Heavy metal chelation – Heavy metal induced toxicity resulting from chronic exposure may be affecting up to 25% of Americans. Found in the air, water, soil and our food supply, heavy metals can accumulate in the body. Even at minute levels, toxic metals can have detrimental effects on the integrity of the cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, neurological, musculoskeletal, and immune systems. Vitamin B6 as PLP has been shown to inhibit cellular lead toxicity by mobilizing lead deposits in tissues and enhancing excretion of toxic metals through urination.

Glycation – Glycation occurs when a sugar molecule, such as glucose or fructose, bonds to a protein or lipid molecule without the controlling action of an enzyme. This results in the formation of non-functioning advanced glycation end products or AGE’s. While AGE’s are a normal consequence of aging, they are far from desirable, as glycation is associated with diabetes related conditions, cataract development, atherosclerosis, kidney failure, neurological impairment, and visible signs of skin aging. PLP has been described as the most potent natural substance for inhibiting AGE formation, helping to combat premature aging and the underlying loss of structure and function associated with accelerated aging.

Homocysteine – Homocysteine is a byproduct created during protein metabolism. High levels of homocysteine are implicated in increased risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease, and are viewed as a potential predictor of Alzheimer’s disease. Randomized controlled trials have shown that vitamin B6 can effectively reduce homocysteine levels associated with heart disease development and age-related cognitive decline.

Neurotransmitter production –  B vitamins play a central role in the maintenance of nervous system health and function. Vitamin B6 is a necessary cofactor in the synthesis of neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, serotonin, GABA, melatonin and noradrenaline. These chemical messengers affect every bodily cell, tissue and organ system and regulate mood, emotions, sleep, cognition, energy, appetite, pleasure, fear, and the stress response.

Chronic stress, aging, certain medications, obesity, pregnancy, excessive alcohol consumption, and medical conditions, such as poor kidney function, impaired liver function, malabsorption syndromes, and autoimmune diseases can interfere with or block intestinal absorption of vitamin B6.  While it’s rare for healthy individuals to have a significant deficiency of B6, studies indicate that many individuals may be mildly deficient in all B vitamins, especially children and seniors. Marginal deficiencies in B vitamins can predispose individuals to a number of negative health consequences, including less than optimal brain function. Symptoms of deficiency can include muscle weakness, anemia, nervousness, depression, weakened immune function, difficulty concentrating, and short-term memory loss.

Professional Supplement Center carries many high quality products to ensure optimal intake of B-Complex vitamins in support of overall wellness:

P-5-P 50 mgP-5-P 50 mg by Designs for Health®: Each capsule supplies 50 mg of the activated form of vitamin B6 in support of a wide range of biological actions. Wheat, yeast, soy, gluten, egg, dairy, sugar, and artificial ingredient free.


P5P50 (activated B6)P5P 50 (activated B6) by Pure Encapsulations®: Each vegetable capsule supplies 50 mg of active bioavailable vitamin B6 to provide beneficial nutritional support for a wide range of physiological functions. Gluten and soy free, Non-GMO, hypoallergenic, vegetarian formulation.


P-5-P Pyridoxal-5...P-5-P Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate by Klaire Labs®: Particularly well suited for individuals with amino acid imbalances or nutritional deficiencies, this already converted and easy-to-assimilate form of vitamin B6 metabolite provides coenzyme support for numerous biological functions.  Gluten, soy, wheat, dairy, preservative and artificial ingredient free, Kosher-certified, hypoallergenic formulation.


Pyridoxal 5'...Pyridoxal 5’ Phosphate by Metabolic Maintenance: This two-ingredient supplement provides 50 mg of vitamin B6 as P5P and 250 mg of vitamin C in support of optimal bodily function. Excipient free, vegan formulation.


Active B-ComplexActive B-Complex by Integrative Therapeutics®: This active B-Complex provides a full complement of bioavailable B vitamins necessary for numerous biochemical processes. Gluten, soy, wheat, sugar, yeast, dairy, and preservative free, vegetarian, NSF-Certified formulation.


PureGenomics® B...PureGenomics® B-complex by Pure Encapsulations®: This gluten free, Non-GMO, hypoallergenic, vegan formulation provides highly active broad-spectrum B vitamin support to address the nutrient requirements of methylation processes, as well as cellular, cardiovascular, neurological, and psychological health.


What are the Benefits of Vitamin B6 to the Brain?


B Vitamins and the Brain: Mechanisms, Dose and Efficacy—A Review.

Why vitamin B is so important for a healthy nervous system.

Phyllis A. Balch, CNC. Prescription for Nutritional Healing. Vitamin B6. Penguin Group 2010.

Our BEST SELLING Supplements for Inflammation & Joint Pain



Pure Encapsulations Glucosamine and Chondroitin with MSM offers highly purified constituents for healthy cartilage formation and joint movement ease.



VitalVital Nutrients BCQ is a powerful herbal combination that provides enhanced support for maintaining a healthy inflammatory response and to reduce minor pain.



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