Do not ingest essential oils

I started practising aromatherapy in the early 1990s; taught the subject in two holistic health schools and developed a complete curriculum for spa academy run by Raffles hotel group. Certainly, essential oil (EO) therapy is one of my favourite subjects and it is still part of my herbal medicine practice.

The euphoria died down soon after 2000. Lately, there was renewed interest in aromatherapy with all sorts of claims including treating cancer with frankincense etc. The claims and ‘magic’ of EO are just exaggerations.  They are useful as part of herbal medicine but not ‘magic’ as some claimed to be.

I was shocked to know that some essential oil suppliers are asking clients to take EO internally.  There is not enough historical usage or clinical data to support it. Unlike herbal extracts which have a long history of safe human consumption (EU specify more than 30 years), nobody knows what will be the long- term side effects of ingestion of EO.

From my over a decade experience in EO and herbs, herbs, of dried herb or fresh tinctures deliver better and much safer results than EO.

Essential oils are extremely concentrated substances and it should not be consumed internally.

About Sebastian Liew

Matthew Wood, the renowned American herbalist described Sebastian as ‘one of the most unique and talented practitioners of natural healing and herbalism.’ The New Paper (Singapore) called Sebastian Liew 'The Medicine Man'. Indeed, Sebastian is a qualified and registered Medical Herbalist (accredited by the National Herbalists Association of Australia), with a Master's degree in Herbal Medicine from the University of New England, Australia. He is the first medical herbalist in Singapore and is known to popularize phytotherapy (Western herbal medicine), European traditional medicine, and St Hildegard medicine (Germany) in Singapore and probably in Asia. Sebastian has 20 years clinical work experiences and treated numerous patients with different medical conditions from all age groups in his Singapore clinic. Sebastian authored the book, Leaf to Life: The Natural Approach to Slow Down Aging and Living a Healing Life, which set the fundamentals for healthy aging and the prevention or treatment for almost all diseases. Please visit website
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