10 Champaca Oil Benefits That Are Science-Backed

Champaca flowers are well-admired for its sweet, aromatic fragrance. Its stems, barks, and flowers help treat wounds, gout, diabetes, dysuria, and cardiac disorders. These are just a few. The champaca oil benefits are abundant, and its properties are something that have been widely studied.

Let’s understand in detail what this herb has to offer.   

What is Champaca Oil?

Champaca essential oil is extracted from the flowers, fruits, and leaves of Magnolia champaca through the process of steam distillation. It has various medicinal and curative properties. It is widely used in perfumes, making it highly valuable commercially as well as medicinally. (1)

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Scientific Name of Champaca Oil

The botanical name of champaca is Magnolia champaca or Michelia champaca L.

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History of Champaca Oil

 Magnolia champaca is a flowering tree, which belongs to the family Magnoliaceae. It is a tall evergreen tree cultivated throughout India and are commonly seen in gardens, temples for their fragrant flowers and wonderful foliage. (2)

Magnolia champaca is also known by various other names such as:

  • Champaka
  • Chapa
  • Chempaka
  • Champ
  • Michelia blumei Steud
  • Magnolia membranacea P.Parm.
  • Champa
  • Champaca
  • Champagam
  • Champakam
  • Champakamu
  • Champige
  • Champaca michelia Noronha
  • Sampacca suaveolens (Pers.) Kuntze
  • Golden champa
  • Yellow champa
  • Fragrant champaca
  • Orange chempaka
  • Chenbagam
  • Sampangi
  • Chambugam
  • Sempangan
  • Chembuga
  • Rae-champo
  • Sorno champa
  • Swarna champa
  • Kanak champa
  • Champeya
  • Hempushpa
  • Kanchana
  • Shat
  • Latika
  • Deeppushpa
  • Sampige

They are common in South as well as East Asia.

The plant carries high medicinal value. It treats several ailments such as fever, cough, leprosy (skin & nerve disease), ulcer (skin surface erodes exposing the inner sensitive tissue), wounds, skin diseases, abdominal colic (pain in the stomach region), rheumatism (joint disease), constipation (difficulty to pass stools), dysmenorrhea (painful menstruation), and bronchitis (cold & infection).

The plant of champaca is popular in both Ayurveda and Siddha medicine.

Through methods like hydrodistillation, using Clevenger type apparatus, champaca leaves, flowers, and fruits yield the oil. Swarna champa flower buds and fruits are bitter. (3)

Color, Consistency, and Smell of Champaca Oil

  • The color of champaca oil is reddish-brown transparent liquid.
  • The consistency of champaca oil is neither too thin nor too thick.
  • The smell of champaca oil is sweet, floral, fruity, and strong.

Properties of Champaca Essential Oil

The plant possesses numerous pharmacological properties such as:

  • Antioxidant - Inhibits oxidation process and prevents diseases & early aging
  • Insecticidal – Kills insects naturally
  • Antimicrobial - Fights harmful organisms
  • Antipyretic - Reduces fever
  • Anti-inflammatory – Reducess redness, pain, swelling, high-temperature, and difficulty in moving.
  • Antidinic - Treats vertigo
  • Carminative - Eliminates gas
  • Antidiabetic - Reduces high blood sugar levels
  • Hemostatic - Prevents the excess flow of blood
  • Anti-helminthic - Prevents and treats stomach worms
  • Diuretic - Eliminates excess water from the body
  • Astringent - Prevents excess oil production
  • Antimicrobial - Fights harmful bacteria and fungi
  • Analgesic - Reduces pain
  • Cytotoxic - Kills harmful cells
  • Anticariogenic - Prevents dental cavities
  • Mood elevator – Uplifts your mood
  • Antidepressant - Reduces stress and eases depression

Note: The root, bark, and stem of champaca plants are also useful in treating painful menstruation.

Chemical Compounds in Champaca oil 

The key components in champaca essential oil include:

 (e)-nerolidol, (z, 2-phenyl ethanol, benzyl nitrile, cis- and trans-forms of β-ocimene, cis-furanoid linalool oxide, e)-farnesol, hexadecanol, indole, isogermacrene-d, linalool, linalool oxides, methyl 2-methylbutanoate, methyl anthranilate, methyl linoleate, neo-allo-ocimene, pentadecanol, phenylethyl alcohol, trans-furanoid linalool oxide, trans-pyranoid linalool oxide, α –humulene, α-cadinol, α-selinene, α-terpinolene, β-bisabolol, β-bourbonene, β-copaene, β-cubebene, β-elemene, β-linalool, β-myrcene, β-ocimene, β-selinene, βcaryophyllene, γ-cadinene, and δ-elemene.

uses of champaca essential oil

Health Benefits Of Champaca Oil

  • Boon to the perfume industry
  • Wonderful flavoring agent
  • Fights against bacteria
  • Repels insects & bugs
  • Treats rheumatism
  • Prevents dental cavities
  • Rich in antioxidants
  • Treats cephalgia
  • Heals opthalmia
  • Effective antidepressant

Though champaca oil benefits are abundant, the most noteworthy ones that have been proved by researchers lately are:

1. Boon to the perfume industry

The essential oil obtained from Michelia champaca flowers is useful in perfumery. The sweet, intense, and mysterious aroma of champaca helps in creating various exotic scents. It forms the base of the world’s most expensive perfumes.  

Due to the aromatic scents they emit, champaka flowers are often used for worship and worn as an ornament in hair.

Since ancient times, due to their fragrance, champaca flowers were used to decorate bridal beds and to enhance the fragrance of the room. People often left these fresh flowers to float in a bowl of water.

Joy, the world’s second best-selling perfume is partly derived from the essential oil of champaca flowers.

The floral scents of champaca are attributed to a complex mix of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC). Over 85% of VOCs are made up of terpenoids and volatile esters. Among the terpenoids, β-linalool and its derivatives (β-ocimene and β-cubebene) were the major compounds.

Several lab tests such as metabolite-guided transcriptomics, in vitro and in vivo enzyme assays and transgenic studies state that (R)-linalool synthase is necessary for the production of major VOCs. In the case of champak flowers, these are (R)-linalool & linalool oxides.

The quality and quantity of VOCs present in the flowers decide the use of essential oils in the perfumery industry.

Champaca flowers have 5 key monoterpenoids namely:

  • β-ocimene
  • β-linalool
  • β-myrcene
  • neo-allo-ocimene
  • α-terpineol

B-linalool and its oxides like trans-furanoid linalool oxides, cis-furanoid linalool oxides, and trans-pyranoid linalool oxides were the major components.

They comprise about 17.5% of the total volatile composition, and are followed by cis- and trans-forms of β-ocimene, which form about 6.8%.

These components contribute to the maximum amount of fragrance. Furanoid & pyranoid linalool oxides are the prominent constituents of the floral scent. (4, 5)

2. Wonderful flavoring agent

Champaca oil is a natural flavoring agent. This is mainly due to its aromatic volatile compounds. The essential oil collection via headspace method and analysis by GC-MS/ Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry method identifies a total of 43 VOCs from fully opened champak flowers.

46.9% of which are terpenoids, 38.9% are volatile esters, and 5.2% are phenylpropanoids/ benzenoids. 

2-Methylbutanoate and its byproducts like methyl ethyl 2-methyl butanoate, propyl 2-methylbutanoate, and 2-methylbutanoate were some of the major components of champak’s volatile compounds. They possess a fruity and refreshing odor. (6)

3. Fights against bacteria

A paper published in the International Journal of Enhanced Research in Science, Technology, and Engineering, in 2016, states that the oil extracted from the seeds of Champaca michelia Noronha fight against these bacteria:

  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Salmonella typhosa
  • Bacillus pumilus
  • subtilis
  • paratyphi
  • Coli
  • Micrococcus pyogenes var. albus

The compound linalool in it protects you from microbes. Most volatile organic compounds of champaca flowers are present in its petals, which belong to 3 major classes:

  • Terpenoids
  • Phenylpropanoids/benzenoids
  • Volatile esters

Another study published in 2002 states that the methanol extracts of its leaves, seeds, and stems exhibit a broad spectrum of antibacterial activity. The essential oil targets the cell membranes, cell walls, and proteins of bacteria. (7, 8)

4. Repels insects & bugs

Champaca is a well-known insect repellent and this is mainly due to its compound Linalool oxide. So, the nest time you are stepping outdoors, make sure to use its diluted solution (mix 5-7 drops of champaca essential oil in ½ cup water) to ward off mosquitoes and other small insects. (9, 10)

5. Treats rheumatism

Rheumatism is an autoimmune (self-destructive) condition, which is accompanied by pain in the joints, swelling, and difficulty in moving.

Autoimmune diseases are conditions where your body misperceives your own tissues to be foreign, and attacks them just like your body’s immune system would fight against harmful bacteria and viruses.

However, the oil extracted from the flowers of Mongolia champaca is useful to tackle rheumatism. This is mainly due to its anti-inflammatory properties. A gentle massage with diluted champaca oil can do a great deed to painful joints. (11)

6. Prevents dental cavities

According to a study published in 2017, confirms that Michelia champaka essential oil is effective against Streptococcus mutans, a type of bacteria that causes cavities (dental caries).

The oil carries a huge potential in preventing dental caries.

Untreated cavities can affect your tooth pulp deeply. Pulp is your tooth’s vital, which is located in the center of the tooth, leading to pus.

Usually, antibiotics are prescribed to kill harmful disease-causing bacteria. However, they do cause unwanted side-effects by destroying the healthy gut flora that helps in boosting your immunity. Moreover, antibiotic resistance is alarming.

*Antibiotic resistance is a situation where harmful bacteria no longer respond to antibiotics. It has prompted modern researchers to relook at the ancient fool-proof remedies, which kill harmful bacteria.

During a study, Champaka essential oil was extracted via hydro-distillation method. The MIC (Minimum Inhibitory Concentration) of the oil is 25 mg/ ml. It was observed that it has an inhibition zone (active area) of 30mm, which is comparable to the standard antibiotic called gentamicin. (12)

7. Rich in antioxidants

Antioxidants are substances that neutralize free radicals. Harmful pollutants and chemicals cause oxidization and generate free radicals. These are the major cause of deadly diseases.

By neutralizing free radicals such as hydrogen peroxide, M.Champaca Essential Oil helps you to prevent as well as recover from diseases.

At a concentration of 200mg/ml, champaca essential oil inhibits the action of hydrogen peroxide, which is the major free radical produced in the body by up to 63.7%.

During a study, half a kilogram of fresh & fully bloomed Swarna champa flowers were collected in the first week of January at a city in India. (13)

Through hydrodistillation, using a Clevenger apparatus (according to the modified method), the researchers extracted the oil and stored them in amber colored bottles.

Researchers assessed the antioxidant capacity of Champaca michelia Noronha oil via peroxide scavenging activity.

Hydrogen peroxide has an absorption of 230nm, which assesses the antioxidant activity of the oil. When the researchers added M.Champaca essential oil to hydrogen peroxide, the absorption reduced, which is a measure of antioxidant (radical scavenging capacity).

At a concentration of 200 mg/dl, the antioxidant capacity of champaca essential oil was comparable to ascorbic acid, which is a standard antioxidant.

8. Treats cephalgia

Cephalgia is a type of tension headache that spreads to your neck.

The essential oil extracted from the flowers of Magnolia champaca is highly useful in the treatment of cephalgia, especially when champaca oil is diluted with a suitable carrier oil and applied over the affected area. (14)

9. Heals ophthalmia

Ophthalmia is a condition where your eyes become red and inflamed. Conjunctivitis is a type of ophthalmia, which is quite common. Pain, swelling, redness, and trouble in vision are a few of the signs of eye inflammation.

Champaca flower oil is useful in treating ophthalmia, states a recent research. (15, 16)

10.Effective antidepressant

Sampacca suaveolens (Pers.) Kuntze flowers help to relieve stress, relaxes your body, and strengthens your mind. Owing to its holistic approach, it is a popular oil in aromatherapy.

What Blends with Champaca Oil?

Champaca essential oil blends the best with:

How To Use Champaca Oil?

how to use champaca essential oil

  • Aromatherapy: Use it in a diffuser, inhaler, or aroma lamp to inhale its vapors.
  • Bath: Add a couple of drops of diluted oil to your warm bath water.
  • Massage: Mix it with a carrier oil and use a little of the mixture to massage thoroughly.
  • Mist spray: Add a couple of drops to your mist spray.
  • Perfumes: Add the diluted oil drop by drop to your perfume blend till you achieve the desired fragrance.

Note: Dilute it with a carrier oil before using. To begin with, you may start with 1% dilution, if you are comfortable, you may go up to 5% dilution, however, make sure you consult your doctor before using it for the first time. You may want to try a patch test as well.

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Side effects of Champaca Oil

Usually, champaca oil is non-irritant, non-toxic, and non-sensitizing. However, it may interfere with your medicines. Talk to your doctor before you start using it.

  • Avoid contacting your eyes. Rinse off with plenty of water in case of accidental contact with your eyes.
  • Protect the oil from sunlight and heat.
  • Avoid using this oil on children.
  • If you are taking supplements, pills, or undergoing any treatment, consult your doctor before using the oil.
  • If you are pregnant/nursing, you need to exercise extra caution.
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