Angelica archangelica, commonly known as garden angelica, Holy Ghost, wild celery, and Norwegian angelica, is a biennial plant from the Apiaceae family, a subspecies of which is cultivated for its sweetly scented edible stems and roots. Like several other species in Apiaceae, its appearance is similar to several poisonous species (Conium, Heracleum, and others), and should not be consumed unless it has been identified with absolute certainty. Synonyms include Archangelica officinalis Hoffm., and Archangelica officinalisvar.himalaica C.B. Clark.
During its first year it grows only leaves, but, during its second year, its fluted stem can reach a height of two meters (or six feet). Its leaves comprise numerous small leaflets divided into three principal groups, each of which is again subdivided into three lesser groups. The edges of the leaflets are finely toothed or serrated. The flowers, which blossom in July, are small and numerous, yellowish or greenish, are grouped into large, globular umbels which bear pale yellow, oblong fruits. Angelica grows only in damp soil, preferably near rivers or deposits of water.
Angelica archangelica grows wild in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Greenland, the Faroe Islands, and Iceland, mostly in the northern parts of the countries. It is cultivated in France, mainly in the Marais Poitevin, a marsh region close to Niort in the department Deux-Sèvres. It also grows in certain regions in Germany like the Harz Mountains, in certain regions of Romania, like the Rodna Mountains, and some South East Asian countries like Thailand.
From the 10th century on, angelica was cultivated as a vegetable and medicinal plant, and achieved popularity in Scandinavia in the 12th century and is still used today, especially in Sami culture. A flute-like instrument with a clarinet-like sound can be made of its hollow stem. Linnaeus reported that Sami peoples used it in reindeer milk, as it is often used as a flavoring agent.
In 1602, angelica was introduced in Niort, which had just been ravaged by the plague. It is used to flavor liqueurs or aquavits, (e.g., Chartreuse, Bénédictine, Vermouth, and Dubonnet), omelettes and trout, and as jam. The long bright-green stems are also candied and used as decoration.
Angelica is unique amongst the Umbelliferae for its pervading aromatic odor, a pleasant perfume entirely different from fennel, parsley, anise, caraway, or chervil. It has been compared to musk and to juniper. Even the roots are fragrant, and form one of the principal aromatics of European growth – the other parts of the plant have the same flavor, but their active principles are considered more perishable.
The fruits are tiny mericarps and are used in the production of absinthe and other alcoholic drinks. Seeds of a Persian spice plant known as Golpar (Heracleum persicum) are often labeled as “angelica seeds”.
Angelica archangelica roots have been used in the traditional Austrian medicine internally as tea or tincture for treatment of disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract, nervous system, and also against fever, infections, and flu. Believed to possess both curative and restorative qualities, many experts think angelica root is comparable to the world of herbalism in the United States as ginseng is to herbalism in China.
What is Angelica Essential Oil?
Angelica Root Essential Oil is also known as the Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit Root, Archangel Root and Oil of Angels. This oil probably got its name because its healing powers were so great and vast that the origin must have been from a Divine Source. Energetically, this essential oil assists the user to be open to the angelic realm, source energy and higher self.
Angelica Essential Oil has a history of aromatherapy use towards combating stress, exhaustion and anxiety. Aromatically, it has a very pleasant scent. That is why it is widely known to be used for perfumery and fragrance. Angelica essential oil don’t want prefer to be used on its own and will likely prefer to be blended with other essential oils.
There are two angelica essential oils, one distilled from the seeds, one from the roots. Sometimes they are combined. As an essence, angelica has been distilled only recently in Europe. At first it is colourless, but with age it turns yellow and then dark brown. It must not be used when dark brown. It is quite thick, but still fluid. The seeds contain more essential oil than the roots, but the root oil is much stronger and more concentrated. The seeds are dependent on the variety but include angelic acid, sugar, valeric acid, volatile oil, bitter principle and a resin called angelicin. The angelica essential oil is extracted from the roots when the plant is approximately one year old.
Chemical Constituents of Angelica Essential Oil
The medicinal properties of Angelica come mainly from its essential oil which is composed of constituents like alpha pinene, camphene, beta pinene, sabinene, alpha phellandrene, bornyl acetate, beta phellandrene, beta bisabolene, copaene, cryptone, cis ocimene, humulene oxide, limonene, myrcene, pentadecanolide, para cymene, rho cymenol, trans ocimene, terpinolene, terpinenol, and tridecanolide. The essential oil is extracted through steam distillation of its rhizome (root nodules), seeds, and the whole herb.
Health Benefits of Angelica Essential Oil
The health and practical application and benefits of Angelica Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties as an anti-spasmodic, carminative, depurative, diaphoretic, digestive, diuretic, hepatic, emmenagogue, expectorant, febrifuge, nervine, relaxant, spiritual, stimulant, stomachic, and tonic substance.
Where there is spasming, there are cramps, coughs, aches, diarrhea, nervous afflictions, and convulsions. What actually is a spasm? It is an involuntary and unpredictable contraction in the respiratory tracts, muscles, nerves, blood vessels, and internal organs resulting in severe coughs, cramps, convulsions, obstructed blood circulations, aches in the stomach and chest, and other symptoms. The only way out is to induce relaxation in the affected parts, which this Essential Oil of Angelica is able to do. This oil relieves spasms and gives relief from the painful symptoms discussed above.
The relaxing effect of Angelica Essential Oil is beneficial in driving out gas from the intestines as well. This relaxes the intestinal and abdominal muscles and lets the gases pass through a downward motion, which is much healthier than letting them build up and push upwards on the torso. This gives immense relief from troubles related to excess gas, such as indigestion, stomach aches, headaches, cramps, flatulence, nausea, and high blood pressure.
Depurative means an agent that purifies the blood. The Essential Oil of Angelica does exactly that with great efficiency. It is considered a diuretic (promotes urination) and a diaphoretic (promotes sweating) and thus it speeds up the removal of toxins like uric acid and others, including excess salt, water, fat, and bile from the body through urination and sweat. Therefore, it also gives relief from ailments associated with their accumulation. In this way, it lowers blood pressure and reduces fat (protecting your heart) along with giving relief from troubles like rheumatism, arthritis, gout, and renal calculi.
Sweat may be the cause of annoyance for the majority of us, but it is actually one of the most beneficial things for your health. Sweating is the natural method for removing toxins and waste products from the body. Sweat is not just saline and foul-smelling water. Apart from the water and salts like sodium chloride and magnesium chloride, sweat also contains sebum, fats, uric acid, bile and other toxic elements that are not welcome in our body. Therefore, sweat performs the important task of disposing of them. Sweating helps to increase the potassium ratio in the blood, thereby reducing blood pressure, lowering fat content, and decreasing weight. Furthermore, removing uric acid and other toxins can give relief from rheumatism and arthritis.
Angelica has been recommended by numerous physicians of various traditional medications, including the Traditional Chinese medicine as an excellent remedy for treating digestive problems like colic, intestinal gas and indigestion. Angelica Essential Oil also promotes digestion by stimulating the secretion of digestive juices like acid and bile into the stomach. It also promotes the proper movement of food through the intestines and absorption of the digested food by intestinal villi.
This property may be bliss for those suffering from chronic renal failure, the excess accumulation of water in the body, or for those who are suffering from renal calculi, obesity, hypertension and symptoms associated with the accumulation of toxins in the body such as rheumatism, arthritis, and gout. As a diuretic, Angelica Essential Oil increases frequency and quantity of urination, which helps to remove excess water, salts, fat (urine contains up to 4% fat), and toxins like uric acid. This provides effective protection from the symptoms discussed above.
The Essential Oil of Angelica gives good protection to the liver and makes it function well by stimulating secretions from that organ. It also protects the liver from infections and helps to heal wounds in it, if any are present.
Angelica has been claimed as a renowned part of Chinese medicine and ten forms of Angelica herb were known to be used for strengthening the spirit, enhancing the fertility rate and for curing all sorts of feminine problems. This oil also triggers the opening of obstructed menstruation and makes it more regular. As a bonus, one gets relief from the other symptoms associated with periods as well, such as headaches, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.
Being an expectorant, the Essential Oil of Angelica clears out the accumulation of phlegm in the respiratory tracts and also fights the infections that cause colds, thereby giving relief from cough, cold, sinusitis, and congestion in the lungs.
This essential oil is also capable of reducing fever by fighting the infections that cause the fever. The diaphoretic and diuretic properties of this oil also contribute to this effect, since the removal of toxins and waste from the body speeds up the recovery time of infections. Perspiration also helps to reduce fevers.
This oil also acts as a tonic for the nerves. It is effective in treating nervous afflictions and disorders and in strengthening the nerves. This, being a relaxant and a stimulant at the same time, sedates the nervous afflictions and relaxes them in cases of shock and hyper-reactivity, while also stimulating them in order to make us more active and alert.
This oil has a relaxing effect on the body, the mind, and the nervous system. This becomes particularly beneficial in situations of shock, depression, anxiety, anger, and hypertension.
The fragrance of Angelica essential oil may help release negative feelings from traumatic events; it is emotionally calming. Many find Angelica essential oil to be an important addition to their healing or spiritually-protective blends. Angelica flower essence is used to open the doorway to protection from spirit realms.
In contrary to its behavior as a relaxant, it is a stimulant for the systems functioning inside the body. It stimulates blood circulation, the secretion of hormones, enzymes, and other juices, and also stimulates metabolic processes, including digestion, absorption, and excretion. This attribute, in total, stimulates healthy growth.
The simplest sentence that can best describe its stomachic property is that it is good for the stomach. It maintains the stomach in a good shape by maintaining the proper balance of acids and bile and by protecting it from infections. It also helps heal any sorts of wounds or ulcers that are present in the stomach.
This oil promotes the all round development of health, boosts growth, and strengthens the immune system of the body. A 2011 study titled “Angelica archangelicaLinn. is an angel on earth for the treatment of diseases” by Department of Pharmaceutical sciences, University of Kashmir, India published in the International Journal of Nutrition, Pharmacology and Neurological diseases suggests Angelica as a stimulating bronchial tonic, for its effect in treating bronchial conditions, headache, fever, chest congestion, migraine, cough and certain other respiratory problems.
Uses of Angelica Essential Oil
A number of Angelica essential oil uses are suggested here to guide you in any practical remedy applications.
Add 2 drops of Angelica Essential oil along with 1 drop ofEucalyptus oil to steam inhalation for treating migraine pain, nasal congestion, cold, whooping cough, headache, bronchitis, sinusitis, asthma and breathing difficulties.
A gentle massage with 1 drop of Angelica essential oil and 1 drop ofYarrow oil and 1 drop of Eucalyptus oil in your vaporizing ointment or in a warm blend of 15ml of pure coconut oil on your chest, throat and back can be a quick reliever of block nasal passages, runny nose, sore throat, dry cough, itchy eyes and fatigue due to cold.
Massaging the foot soles with 2 drops of Angelica essential oil blended with 1 drop ofCumin oil mixed with 2 ml of Evening primrose oil can help in reducing the body temperature in case of fever. This also aids in combating micro-organisms that are responsible for fever and respiratory infections.
Adding 2 drops of Angelic oil along with 2 drops of Petitgrain oil in your warm bathing water daily can help you vastly in improving your immune power and balancing your immune deficiencies.
Go for an invigorating massage with 5 drops of Angelica essential oil with 2 drops of Rosewood oiland 2 drops of Cumin oil and 2 drops of Fennel oil with 100 ml of virgin Olive oil for supporting your immune system and guard your body against vulnerable diseases.
Massaging your stomach with 2 drops of Angelica essential oil along with 2 drops ofVetiver oil in a blend of 2 ml of sesame oil can assist in stimulating the secretion bile and other digestive acids.
Inhaling the bitter aroma of Angelica oil by adding 1 drop of this oil in your diffuser or a tissue can support in healing wounds or ulcers in the stomach lining and intestinal walls.
Massaging your body or the inflamed or painful parts of your system with 5 drops of Angelica essential oil with 2 drops ofFennel oil and 3 drops of John’s Wort oil along with 50 ml of coconut oil can be an excellent aid in reducing inflammation, pain, swelling, muscular soreness, irritation, redness and fat deposits and in treating urinary infections. You can also add 2 drops of Angelica oil in warm compress for alleviating pain associated with rheumatic conditions and arthritis.
Adding 2 drops of Angelica oil in your vaporizer or diffuser is said to elevate your feelings and drive the negative energies like mood fluctuations, uneasiness, depression and fatigue experienced during menstrual cycle or during the post or pre-menopausal period.
Gently applying 3 drops of Angelica oil along with 2 drops ofDill oil and 20 ml of sesame oil on your lower abdomen, thighs, lower back and around your genital area can assist in relieving menstrual pain, severe abdominal cramps or dysmenorrhea, blocked or delayed menstruation, nausea, fatigue, restlessness and headache associated with menstruation and menopause.
2 drops of Angelica oil with 1 drop of Rose oil added to air freshener or diffuser can certainly help in uplifting your spirits by enhancing your mood, promoting peaceful sleep by sedating the nervous afflictions and relaxing your tensed or sore muscles.
A weekly rejuvenating massage with 5 drops of Angelica oil blended with 3 drops of Rosewood oil, 3 drops ofPetit grain oil, 3 drops of Chamomile oil and 1 drop of Rose oil with 75 ml of Jojoba oil can alleviate nervous tension, anxiety, pain, anger, and negative feelings due to depression and hypertension.
Precautions for Angelica Essential Oil
Angelica root essential oil contains coumarin which may interfere with other prescription medications. Allergic reactions, like redness, blistering, hives, bumps, or a darkening of the skin may occur. Do not use if pregnant or diabetic. Delayed allergic reactions may occur with the use of angelica root oil. Direct contact of angelica root to skin can cause an extreme sensitivity to sunlight. In higher doses, it can cause excessive stimulation or hyperactivity of the nervous system. Please consult with a doctor before using for aromatherapy or topical application.