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Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils

What Are Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils?

Plants not only play a vital role in the ecological balance of our planet, but they are intimately linked to the physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being of people since the beginning of time.

Essential oils are aromatic volatile liquids distilled from shrubs, flowers, trees, roots, bushes, and seeds.

One of the factors that determines the purity of an oil is it chemical constituents. These constituents can be affected by a vast number of variables, including: the part of the plant from which the oil was produced, soil condition, fertilizer, geographical climate, altitude, harvesting methods, and distillation processes.  

The key to producing a therapeutic grade essential oil is to preserve as many of the delicate aromatic compounds within the essential oil as possible. Fragile aromatic compounds are easily destroyed by high temperature and pressure, as well as contact with chemically reactive metals such as copper or aluminum. This is why therapeutic grade essential oils should be distilled in stainless steel cooking chambers at low temperature. The plant material should also be free of herbicides and other agrochemicals. These can react with the essential oil during the distillation process to produce toxic compounds. Because many pesticides are oil soluble, they can also mix into the essential oil.

Inferior quality or adulterated oils most likely will not produce therapeutic results and could possibly be toxic.  In Europe, a set of standards has been established that outlines the chemical profile and principal constituents that a quality essential oil should have. Known as AFNOR (Association French Normalization Organization Regulation), these guidelines help buyers differentiate between a therapeutic grade essential oil and a lower grade oil with similar make-up and fragrance. All Young Living essential oils have been graded according to the AFNOR standards.

Essential Oils Desk Reference. 3rd ed. Life Science, 2015. Print.

Talking about Essential Oils

When describing therapeutic-grade essential oils to someone else, it’s important to relay that every essential oil Young Living distills or sources has the highest naturally-occurring blend of constituents to maximize the desired effect. This is our Young Living Therapeutic Grade™ (YLTG) promise.

For example: Have you ever wondered what makes clove essential oil Young Living Therapeutic Grade? Young Living’s clove essential oil is distilled from the flower of the plant—unlike imitation clove oil that is distilled from the stem or leaf. While the clove stem and leaf are certainly less expensive to distill and have the same aroma as oil distilled from the flower, you will not find the highest amount of the naturally-occurring eugenol in essential oils that are distilled from these parts of the plant. Eugenol is the compound that gives clove oil the important antiseptic and anesthetic properties you and I have come to rely on in the Thieves products—to purchase a lesser quality clove oil would be denying these important therapeutic benefits.

When recently interviewed, Mary Lou, Young Living’s essential oil sourcing specialist, stated that many partner companies approach Young Living with their supply of clove but are turned away because the oil does not meet the high standards of YLTG set by Gary Young. Unfortunately, many of the rejected oils find their way to other essential oil companies.

As you can see, not every therapeutic-grade essential oil is the same. Only the right blend of naturally-occurring chemicals will produce a true YLTG essential oil. Knowing that the best clove oil comes from the clove flower can help you share the importance of the Young Living Therapeutic Grade standard. And when describing YLTG to someone else, it’s important to relay that every essential oil Young Living distills or sources has the highest naturally-occurring blend of constituents to maximize the desired therapeutic effect.

The YLTG promise is a bold statement—but you can share our products with confidence, knowing that Young Living truly has the experience to produce essential oils that work. If you want lavender essential oil for calming, the YLTG standard guarantees our lavender oil will live up to everything you have heard about lavender’s soothing qualities. Using a wintergreen blend for massage oil? Again, the YLTG standard ensures you will receive your personal desired effect.