Amber Oil: Benefits, Uses, Properties, and Side Effects
From protecting your heart and calming your mind to stimulating your libido and blood flow, the amber oil benefits are abundant.
Amber is one of the most admired healing medicine. Thanks to its incredible properties. However, its uses weren’t recently discovered. It has been known from the Stone Age or the Neolithic times.
It was burnt during grand festivals in ancient China. When heated in the correct condition, it produces amber oil.
Let’s dig deeper about amber essential oil and unveil its history, extraction, properties, chemical structure, benefits, and much more.
What Is Amber Oil?
There has been a lot of confusions over the extraction of amber essential oil. However, pure amber oil is extracted from the resin of the Baltic pine tree (or Pinus Succinifera). The fossilized resin is heated at a temperature more than 200°C to turn it into liquid form. (1)
It is a volatile oil, which when extracted fresh, is yellow and has an incredibly aromatic smell.
Amber is the resin of various prehistoric plants. It is not extracted from any particular plant, but rather the Mother Nature collects the resins of different plants by itself.
These resins are found abundantly in the Baltic region. The resin protected many species of insects in it. Researchers even found a wing of dinosaurs in amber.
Due to landslides, soil erosion, or ice age, the resin captured the insects in it, which then must have got buried.
Scientific Name Of Amber Oil
Amber is a prevalent scientific term used for fossilized resin in the botanical origin. (2)
History Of Amber Oil
Amber originated from southern Italy, Egypt, and India. But it is also found in Syria and has been used for whorl and ornament preparation for ages.
The Theophrastus first described Amber oil in the 4th century. Pytheas said that the amber’s fossil resin is found on Isle of abalus (an island). (3)
Amber oil was also described in the chemists’ manual of the 18th century. The earliest found literature regarding the use of amber essential oil was found during 1673 in a French English dictionary called Randle Cotgrave. This dictionary states “Huile sacree (Oil of Amber)” is named for its admirable and secret virtues.” (4)
It says that amber oil can be used for religious or ritual purposes and in perfumes. The scents of amber are aphrodisiac and are mentioned in The New Sydenham Society’s Lexicon of Medicine and the allied sciences in 1881 as well.
Judith Frondel, a writer, wrote in his book about a few olden beliefs regarding amber. He wrote that people in earlier days were confused about amber. While some believed it to be the urine of Lynx, others claimed that it was tears of the birds from India and solidified sun rays at ocean bank. (5, 6)
For centuries, amber oil is known as Oleum succini and was described in the 19th century in pharmacopeia as a possible stimulant.
Color, Composition, and Smell Of Amber Oil
- The color of amber oil is pale yellow.
- The consistency of amber oil is viscous.
- The smell of amber oil is fresh and sweet.
Properties Of Amber Essential Oil
The medicinal properties of amber oil include:
- Anti-inflammatory – Reduces inflammation (redness, swelling, and pain)
- Analgesic – Reduces the sensation of pain
- Cardioprotective – Protects the heart from deadly diseases
- Respiratory supportive – Reduces the asthamatic effect
- Antioxidant – Scavenges the free radicals
- Nervine tonic – Boosts the immune system
- Antispasmodic – Relaxes the muscle spasms
- Antipyretic – Reduces fever
Chemical Compounds In Amber Oil
The chemical components in amber oil include:
Cumene, careen, cymene, polyabetic acid, cis-decaline, and succinic acid, incensole, alpha cadrene, widdrol, sesquiterpenes, and thujopsene.
Health Benefits Of Amber Oil
Though the amber oil benefits are numerous, the most prominent ones include:
1. Eliminates stress
Amber oil helps in eliminating stress. Being a potent antioxidant, it helps in scavenging the generated free radicals.
It is well-known that free radicals are the root cause of stress, anxiety, and insomnia. However, the aroma of amber has a long-lasting and mellow effect, reducing the stress levels stress and giving you a peaceful night sleep. (7)
2. Reduces inflammation
One of the best health benefits of amber oil is that it is highly effective in reducing inflammation. This is mainly due to its rich anti-inflammatory properties. When applied on the skin (but in diluted form), it eases skin irritation and swelling.
Further, it is known to soothe aching muscles. You will be fascinated to read the fact that just inhalation its aroma lessens the swelling in the bronchial tubes and GI (Gastrointestinal) tract. (8)
3. Protects the heart
Amber oil helps in protecting your heart by preventing the onset of deadly issues like hypertension and reducing the cholesterol levels in the body.
It also encourages proper blood circulation by rubbing or massaging diluted amber oil on your body.
4. Strengthens the immune system
Amber essential oil has potent immunoprotective properties. It stimulates the production of white blood corpuscles in the body. White blood cells help fight against foreign pathogens and serve as the body’s second line of defense.
The cells activate once there is an attack from pathogens and prepare the antibodies to work against them.
5. Prevents degenerative diseases
As said earlier, amber is a potent antioxidant. A few compounds in it help in preventing the oxidative stress and improve cognition.
It lowers the cortisol levels in the body. Cortisol is known as the stress hormone.
Being a rich source of antioxidants, it helps in increasing concentration and prevents long-term degenerative diseases, which could be due to decreased neuron functions.
It stimulates the neurons and nerve endings, helping you to maintain proper nerve impulse conduction and eliminating depression. When the cortisol levels decrease, the dopamine levels increase. Dopamine is a hormone that makes you feel good and happy. (11)
6. Increases sexual urge
The oil of amber is a well-known aphrodisiac and can uplift your mood after a few minutes of smelling its aroma. It has been specially found useful in men, as it increases the sexual urge in them. (12)
The aroma of amber oil, when sprayed or burned, works efficiently. Therefore, it is often diffused by couples to create that closeness before intercourse. Moreover, it increases sex drive and fertility.
7. Prevents kidney failure
Amber essential oil is also found effective in treating kidney disorders. Its therapeutic properties protect the heart from hypertension and hyper cholesterol deposition.
Most kidney diseases are associated with hypertension and blood circulation. Hence, by eliminating the problem of hypertension and regulating proper blood flow, it protects the kidney from excess pressure.
8. Used in cosmetics
Amber oil is widely used in the cosmetic industry for its natural aroma, especially while making soaps. Besides its rich smell, it is a well-known antibacterial agent.
9. Rich antibacterial effects
Amber essential oil is a potent antioxidant and an antibacterial agent. The antioxidant compounds in amber oil break the cell walls of bacteria and further, disintegrate their structure. No wonder it is commonly used in soaps, perfumes, deodorant, and creams.
10. Heals skin problems and softens the hair
Amber essential oil is widely used for healing various skin problems like inflammation, eczema, and psoriasis. It helps in cleaning of the skin and further, promote the growth of new cells. It provides elasticity to tired skin.
Just adding a few drops of amber essential oil to warm water and massaging your face with this mixture can provide a new glow to the skin. Also, you can steam your hair with it to strengthen the hair follicles.
What Blends With Amber Oil?
Amber essential oil blends the best with:
- Sandalwood oil
- Frankincense oil
- Cedarwood oil
- Labdanum oil
- Jojoba oil
- Sweet almond oil
- Extra virgin coconut oil
- Lavender oil
- Bergamot oil
How To Use Amber Oil?
Amber essential oil is a potent oil and is often used as perfume or room freshener. It should be sprayed or diffused only with the help of a vaporizer or a diffuser.
To ease the nighttime anxiety, add a few drops of amber essential oil in hot water for a steam bath. This reduces the respiratory complaints. It can often be used for body massage by mixing it with carrier oils.
Side Effects Of Amber Oil
Amber oil, like any other essential oil is prone side effects if overused or misused.
- It can cause severe skin irritation, skin inflammation, stomach upset, and even interact with other drugs.
- Avoid using amber essential oil if you are pregnant or lactating. It has a stimulant effect on the body and can result in premature labor.
- Individuals with rashes and other skin allergies should using the oil. It is better to do a small patch test before using it on the skin.
- Internal consumption of amber essential oil is strictly restricted, as it can cause nausea, vomiting, and stomach pain.