The eucalyptus tree (also known as Tasmanian Blue Gum) is an evergreen tree native to Australia that’s often thought of as the main food source of koala bears. While it provides amazing nutritional support for wildlife, the essential oils extracted from eucalyptus leaves also have powerful medicinal properties.
According to English folklore, an early English settler had his thumb nearly severed by an ax. His father, who was well-versed in Aboriginal folk medicine, advised that he apply a bandage of tightly bound eucalyptus leaves around the cut after it was sutured.
Evidently, the Aborigines used eucalyptus, or “kino” as they referred to it, to heal most wounds they encountered. Later, when a surgeon saw the wound, he remarked how amazed he was because the thumb healed so quickly and without any trace of infection.
Reports like this spread throughout Australia, and pharmacists like Joseph Bosisto began tinkering with the idea of commercially producing eucalyptus oil in 1852. Soon thereafter, the leaves of Eucalyptus radiata were first distilled near Melbourne.
Interestingly, small towns in Australia discovered that eucalyptus oil could be converted into a gas to light their homes, hotels and shops. Little did they know that they stumbled upon one of the most powerful forms of natural medicine ever.
Today, eucalyptus oil uses have a broad range of health benefits including: