HEALTHY LIVING: 5 things to know about essential oils

HEALTHY LIVING: 5 things to know about essential oils

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DURHAM — Alternative therapy has become more popular in recent years, and health and therapy businesses like The Red Barn in Durham are providing people with classes to introduce natural remedies like essential oils, which are derived from parts of different plants and herbs.

The Record-Journal recently met with Victoria Boccalatte, a holistic wellness coach and instructor of the oils class, and Janice Juliano, collaborative director, to learn more about essential oils.

Health benefits

It is recommended that anyone interested in trying essential oils, or any new health treatment, consult with their physician first.

According to the Mayo Clinic, research is limited on the effects of essential oils being used topically, internally and through aromatherapy (inhaled through a diffuser).

The Mayo Clinic says “some small studies do suggest that aromatherapy can be beneficial,” and “many people report that essential oils help them feel better by easing nausea, soothing sore muscles or promoting relaxation after a stressful day.”

Essential oils, a method of healing dating back to the ancient Egyptians, can be used to help relieve muscle pain and tension.

Juliano said essential oils can be used to treat a variety of ailments, including anxiety and depression.

“I recently had a cold and I used one of the oils for congestion and it really worked,” she said of her experience. “The great thing about it is it’s all natural.” 


Boccalatte said it’s important to research which oils are best for individual needs and to make sure the oils are pure and natural.

“One oil can do many different things,” Boccalatte said.

Some basic oils include peppermint oil, oregano, lemon, and lavender. The oils can be blended to aid with certain ailments like digestive problems, pain and tension.

How to use them

Essential oils are potent and need to be used correctly and safely. The oils are first diluted with a carrier oil like fractionated coconut oil or almond oil. 

Once diluted the oils can be applied topically to the skin, inhaled through a diffuser, taken straight from the bottle or digested in drinks, foods or capsules.

Some oils can even be used to replace chemical household cleaners and keep bugs away.


Classes to learn more about essential oils are held every first and third Thursday at The Red Barn, 352 Main St. The classes cover how to use the oils effectively and safely.

“We personalize each class to your health goals,” Boccalatte said. “I try to make it easy and fun for everyone.”


The Red Barn classes use oils from the company doTERRA, however there are many other companies that produce similar oils. Some include Young Living, Rocky Mountain Oils and Mother Earth Essentials.

A few other local places that offer aromatherapy and essential oil resources include To Heal From the Heart of Wallingford and CT Supplements’ location in Meriden.
Twitter: @KusReporter


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