Now, lime is more popularly used as a cooking ingredient, adding a tangy flavor to your favorite dishes. But there’s another great way to reap its benefits: Use lime oil. Get to know the many uses of this invigorating and refreshing citrus oil.
What Is Lime Oil?
Lime oil comes from Citrus aurantifolia of the Rutaceae plant family.2 This evergreen tree is short and bushy, growing between 6 and 13 feet high (much smaller than orange or grapefruit trees), and has dark green leaves, white blossoms and green oval fruits.3
There are two main types of lime trees: the Mexican lime (Key lime) and the Tahiti lime (Persian or Bearss lime). Lime is indigenous to Southeast Asia and later spread to Egypt and Africa, but is now grown in warm climates around the world.
Lime oil has a sharp citrus scent, and is either pale yellow or light olive in color depending on how it was produced. Although it’s traditionally used as a flavoring agent in food, there are other well-known uses for it.
Uses of Lime Oil
Lime oil has been extensively used in the food and beverage industry, as well as in making fragrances. This versatile citrus oil is also added to household cleaners, detergents, soaps and other beauty products.
You can also get body-wide benefits by using lime oil in aromatherapy, as it is stimulating and refreshing. Just like lemon oil, lime oil can be used for its cleansing properties. Its rich vitamin C content also makes it an ideal immune system booster, helping protect you from colds and flu.
There are multiple ways to use lime oil, depending on what health condition you want to treat or address:4
|You can relieve stress, exhaustion and anxiety or calm your mind by diffusing a few drops using a vaporizer. This also helps boost your immune system, especially after an illness. You can add it to your bathwater as well.|
|For colds, coughs, sinusitis, sore throat and chest congestion, add a few drops to a bowl of steaming water and inhale it. You can also mix a few drops with a carrier oil, then rub it on your neck and chest.|
|If you have rheumatism and arthritis, put two to three drops in an ounce of carrier oil, then massage on the affected areas regularly. This method also works for cellulite and varicose veins.|
|Treat bleeding cuts and wounds by putting two drops in a cold compress and pressing it on the affected areas.|
|For acne and other skin problems, mix two drops of lime oil with 15 drops of jojoba oil and apply onto your skin. This helps wash out impurities while promoting the growth of new skin cells.|
|Avoid dandruff and bring life to dull, frizzy or oily hair by mixing a few drops of lime oil in your favorite shampoo. Lime can help remove oil quickly while moisturizing your scalp from within.5|
- Remove grease spots and sticker residue. Put lime oil on a cotton pad and use it to wipe surfaces clean. It also helps remove gum and can be used to clean a dry erase board.
- Prevent fruits from turning brown. Add one to two drops to your fruits.
- Repel insects, such as mosquitoes and ants. Simply diffuse it in your home.
- Add flavor to your citrus-infused dishes. Add a few drops for a deeper, tangy flavor.
Composition of Lime Oil
Like lemons, limes and lime essential oil are full of antioxidants and other beneficial nutrients.8 Lime oil is loaded with terpene hydrocarbons, such as a-pinene, b-pinene, d-pinene, camphene, sabinene and terponolene.
It also contains oxygenated compounds such as a-terpineol, 1,8-cineole, 1,4-cineole, linalool and fenchol, as well as sesquiterpenes. It also contains traces of neral acetate and geranyl acetate.9
Benefits of Lime Oil
Tetanus can be spread through wounds inflicted by rusty iron objects. Did you know that lime oil can be used to treat such injuries?12 Just like the fruit, lime oil is chock-full of benefits, owing to its rich antioxidant and nutrient content. It’s a great oil to add to your natural first-aid kit. Lime oil can:13
- Help relieve internal and external infections. It can help prevent wounds from being infected, as well as help ease infections of the throat, colon, mouth, intestines, stomach and urinary system. It can also help heal or relieve skin problems such as sores, rashes, psoriasis and carbuncles.
- Relieve respiratory disorders. It can help treat bronchitis and is effective against viral infections like flu, coughs and colds
- Promote good oral health. It strengthens the grip of the gums to prevent tooth loss.
- Help kill bacteria that cause diarrhea, food poisoning, cholera and typhoid. It also helps treat internal and external bacterial infections.
- Detoxify your liver. Taken internally, it can serve as an important component of a detox regimen that promotes liver health.14
How to Make Lime Oil
There are two ways by which lime oil is produced: cold-pressing and distilling. Cold-pressed oil has a yellow or green color, with a rich and fresh lime peel aroma. Meanwhile, distilled is either pale yellow or clear, with a fragrant fruity scent.
Between these two, I would recommend using cold-pressed lime oil, as it retains more of the natural elements that make lime oil so beneficial. Even though cold-pressed lime oil costs more than distilled varieties, it’s definitely worth the money.15You can also make a basic lime oil infusion at home with these easy steps:16
•2 cups olive oil
•Citrus zester or paring knife
•2 Kaffir lime leaves (optional)
- Heat 2 cups of olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. While doing this, wash the limes and dry them thoroughly.
- Using the paring knife or zester, cut the lime zest into quarter-inch strips. Do not cut into the pith, though.
- Add the lime zest and two Kaffir lime leaves (if using) to the olive oil. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes over medium heat.
- Remove the saucepan from heat and then cover, allowing the zest and leaves to steep for two-and-a-half hours.
- Using the fine-mesh sieve, store the oil in an airtight and non-reactive storage container. You can leave the zest in the mixture as a garnish. Store it in a cool, dry place. No need for refrigeration.
This lime oil infusion can be used for up to two weeks.
How Does Lime Oil Work?
According to a 2003 study on the aromatic volatiles in key lime essential oils, the components geranial, neral and linalool are dominant in lime oil, contributing to its fresh and citrus aroma. These components also contribute to the oil’s astringent, tonic, antiseptic, antiviral, antimicrobial, restorative, stimulant and other health-promoting properties.17 To ensure the shelf life of your lime oil, keep it in a cool, dark place, away from sunlight.
Is Lime Oil Safe?
Lime oil can be inhaled or vaporized, used topically, or added to food in small amounts. It’s said to be non-toxic and non-irritating, but this does not mean that you should use it recklessly.18 For instance, do a patch test to see if you have any sensitivity to this oil. Simply apply a drop or two to your skin to check if you develop any allergic reaction.
I do not recommend using undiluted lime oil, as it can be very potent. Instead, blend it with a milder oil, such as coconut oil or olive oil. Lime oil also blends well with lavender, neroli, ylang-ylang and clary sage.19
As with other herbal oils, I advise you to consult your physician before ingesting this oil (diluted or mixed in food) to determine the proper dosage for your condition. I also do not recommend lime oil for pregnant women or nursing mothers without first seeking the advice of their healthcare provider.
Side Effects of Lime Oil
Citrus oils like lime oil are photosensitive, meaning they react to light, radiant energy or other sources of UV rays. If you use this oil topically and then go out into the sun or other light sources, an adverse reaction such as a rash or dark pigmentation may appear after several minutes, hours or days after the light exposure.
So, whatever happens, don’t expose your skin to the sun if you’ve just used lime oil. Wait for six to 24 hours before going out. The stronger the UV rays that you will be exposed to, the longer the wait should be.
11 pounds in 22 days?
Is it REALLY possible to lose 11 lbs. of fat in 22 days? Actually yes… BUT only when you’re a level 4 fat burner. Unfortunately, most people are stuck as level 1 fat burners. So, how do you become a level 4 fat burner to lose up to 11 lbs. in 22 days? Simply eat these foods daily:
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d) Hip Flexors
Take the quiz above and see if you got the correct answer!
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Is Bread Really the Staff of Life… or the Stuff of Disease?
For most us, there are few foods more comforting than bread.
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And that smell… few scents are quite as pleasant as fresh bread baking in the oven.
But there is a lot of confusion as to where bread fits into a healthy diet.
The Bible practically commands followers to eat it: “Give us this day our daily bread…” The government put it at the base of the food pyramid. And for centuries, it has been called “the staff of life.”
Of course, there are some who disagree…
Well-known cardiologist, Dr. William Davis, calls wheat “the perfect chronic poison.”
And for a poison, we sure eat lots of it…
The average American consumes 55 pounds of wheat flour every year, making refined flour the #1 source of calories in the American Diet – a situation that nutrition expert Chris Kresser describes as, “a public health catastrophe.”
So, what is the truth about bread and wheat?
- Is it the perfect poison… or an essential daily food?
- Is “gluten-free” bread better for you than regular bread?
- And can you still eat bread… while maintaining a lean body and optimal health?
The answers to these questions may surprise you!
Be sure to read #5 – the biggest surprise of all!
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You probably know most of us eat too much processed food. What you may not know is that it’s full of toxic chemicals and substandard, dirt-cheap ingredients designed to make you eat more…and force you to gain weight.
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Sponsored Health Resources
In the years that I've been working on this website project I've come across some amazing resources by some very special people. I'd like to share them with you here.
NOTE: I update these links often so please check back to see what's new!
1) Everyone knows green smoothies are healthy right? Have you heard of a “red” smoothie? If not, check out this story…
2) Forget what you've read about 10-day lemonade cleanses, 7-day detoxes with green juices and Gwyneth's gruel. All you need to do, and this is perfect for Saturday or or anytime really, is a simple 1-day cleanse.
3) This “hidden survival muscle” in your body will boost your energy levels, immune system, sexual function, strength and athletic performance when unlocked.
4) I thought it was virtually impossible for a website to be able to tell me anything even a little bit insightful after only submitting my name and date of birth... I was wrong!
5) Turmeric is amazing. The problem is - It's hard to absorb!
6) Wonder why your stomach still sticks out even though you're hammering the core exercises every day? It's a common myth that bulging belly is due to weak abdominal muscles.
7) Even if you're the most active of athletes, you may still suffer from tight hip flexors due to the amount of time you spend each day planted to a chair.
Enjoy! Let me know how these work out for you. And if you run across anything I've missed please let me know.