How do you know, if you don’t really know?

The other day I was asked what’s the difference between therapeutic and clinical grade essential oils, and why do people still prefer theraputic grade over clinical grade? In all honesty I couldn’t answer those questions. I don’t know the difference as far as we know theraputic and clinical are in name only. I mean they are supposed to mean they are the priests oils but some companies will use those labels to make you think they are pure when they really aren’t. Now that I’m presented with this question I’m thinking to myself “How can I expect people to believe that Young Living Essential Oils are 100% pure and that I know my oils when I can’t even tell them the difference between therapeutic and clinical?” Well I did some research and let me tell you what I already knew. Those labels are just that, labels. Yes they are there to prove that you are getting the best oils out there. However, there is no law against using those labels whenever a company sees fit. Therefore, companies can use them to deceive us and try to make us believe their oils are pure. Now am I saying not to trust those labels or the companies that use them? Absolutely not!! I’m saying do some extensive research.

Here are some questions to ask while looking for essential oil companies {taken from The Essential Oil Desk Reference}

  • Are the fragrances delicate, rich, and organic? Do they “feel” natural? Do the aromas vary from batch to batch as an indication that they are painstakingly distilled in small batches rather than industrially processed on a large scale?
  • Does your supplier subject each batch of essential oils through multiple chemical analyses to test for purity and therapeutic quality? Are these tests performed by independent labs?
  • Does your supplier grow and distill its own organically grown herbs?
  • Are the distillation facilities part of the farm where the herbs are grown (so oils are freshly distilled), or do herbs wait days to be processed and lose potency?
  • Does your supplier use low pressure and low temperature to distill essential oil so as to preserve all of their fragile chemical constituents? Are the distillation cookers fabricated from costly food-grade stainless steel alloys to reduce the likelihood of the oils chemically reacting with metal?
  • Does your supplier personally inspect the fields and distilleries where the herbs are grown and distilled? Do they verify that no synthetic or harmful solvents or chemicals are being used?
  • Do your essential oils meet AFNOR or ISO standards?
  • How many years has your supplier been doing all of this?
  • Do your essential oils have a shelf life of just a few years? {Red flag!}
  • Do your essential oils come from an edible plant, yet have a warning on them not to take them internally? {Huge red flag!}

Dr. David Stewart is an Executive Officer and Co-founder of the Center for Aromatherapy Research and Education (CARE International), and the author of Healing Oils of the Bible. He suggests using these 12 questions:

  1. Does their company own any farms on which to raise herbs for oils? And if they do, are they new farms on land formerly polluted with herbicides, pesticides, and chemicals that contain residuals from the past, or are they farming land that is clean, which has never been cultivated or has been untilled for at least the last 50 years?
  2. Does their company have their own fully equipped testing laboratory to verify an oil’s composition?
  3. Do they have anyone on staff with a trained nose who can analyze oils by their smell? (There are less than 200 people in the world with noses sufficiently trained to discern the chemistry of a fragrance.)
  4. If their company purchases oils from outside suppliers, do they visit the distilleries and farms of those suppliers periodically to observe if the herbs are grown organically, i.e. without pesticides, herbicides, or chemical fertilizers?
  5. Do they know if the grower has a testing laboratory on the farm to determine when the crop is at its peak for oil harvesting?
  6. Do they know if the crops were actually harvested at their peak time and, if so, was there an inordinate delay in taking them to the still and into the cookers?
  7. Do they know if their distillery personnel understand the art and science of distilling, exactly how to pack the cookers, how to administer the steam, how to maintain minimum temperatures and pressures throughout the cooker, and how to continuously monitor the process throughout distillation to make sure the oil produced contains all of its components in the proper proportions?
  8. If their supplier makes a mistake in the distillation or harvesting processes that results in an inferior grade of oil, does that supplier sell the oil anyway or do they discard it?
  9. Do they know if the the cookers in the distilleries of their suppliers have domed lids or cone shaped lids? Most stills use dome-shaped lids. Cone topped cookers deliver a better grade of oil than dome tops.
  10. Do they know if their suppliers supplement the distillation process with solvents to extract additional oil from the plant matter?
  11. Do they know if their suppliers bottle their oils directly from the distillery without modifying the composition of the natural oil by adding anything or taking anything away?
  12. Do they know if their company has tested their company’s oils side by side with Young Living oils in the same lab to make a fair comparison? And if so, where is the data?

Now let me get to the 2nd part of the question. Why do people still prefer theraputic grade over clinical grade? Simply put….I don’t know. Not because I don’t know my oils or anything like that. But because I can’t answer for other people and I can’t answer for other companies. But let me answer for myself and for my company and tell you what I do know.

I have a 3yr old and 1yr old little boys. It took me a very long time and a whole lot of heartache to become a mommy and I will not use something on or around my children that could potentially hurt them just to make money!! Yes I am talking about essential oils. There are so many synthetic essential oils out there that are dangerous and people do not take the time to fully research and find out just how dangerous the oils they use can be. If I thought for one minute that Young Living Essential Oils were not safe around my babies they would not be getting used.

With all of my research and questions I found Young Living to be the ONLY company that could answer every question and the ONLY company that pretty much let’s you know their every move. With Young Living’s Seed to Seal guarantee I know exactly where the seeds come  from, how and where they are planted. I know exactly when they are harvested, and how they are distilled, packaged and shipped.

Seed to Seal process

Young Living owns their own farms and distilleries. This allows us to know that no pesticides, gmo (including manure) is ever put on our farms. The plants are checked every hour for peak harvest. It also lets us know that no chemicals or toxins are ever put into the oils.

I also know that only 30% of the oils produced by Young Living are even sold because if there is even a chance that a plant didn’t grow correctly or something like that Gary Young won’t sell it. I also like that anyone can go to all of the Young Living farms whenever they want and watch the whole distillation process themselves. Young Living has nothing to hide and they want every one to be involved and use the best quality oils.

We believe that you and your family deserve products that are genuine, free of synthetic chemicals, and of unmatched purity. Seed to seal is both a promise to you and a reflection of our sense of global stewardship. – Gary Young


I know we as human beings are skeptical, we hate chanfe, we hate being told we are wrong, we hate not being in control. So here’s what I have to say about all of that. Do not be afraid to do your own research. Ask the questions, be truly informed. When it comes to yours and your families health and wellness make sure you know exactly what you are dealing with. Do not continue with something because it’s cheap or because you believe they work. They may work but they may also contain harmful chemicals and toxins!

I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve always been a skeptic, scared of change, and it hasn’t changed much. But I am now informed. I did the research, I asked the questions, and now I know with Young Living Essential Oils myself and my family are safe with these products.

If you have questions or you need help with this journey I am more than happy and willing to help you every step of the way.


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