Why is it that lemons, limes, grapefruit and blood oranges feel so right for summer?
Is it the bright zing of their juice? Or the tangy-sweet-sour pop they add to salads, a glass of water or even squeezed over a cup of fresh berries?
Did you know that when you squeeze fresh citrus over food, the essential oils are released from the rind at the same time as the juice? These oils have a greater depth of flavor than the juice – which is why the zest of a citrus fruit is so often used in recipes.
Here’s a quick round up of some of the citrus oils we use at Mood Food:
Lemon: Light and bright, but with an almost buttery depth, this ‘happy’ oil is super uplifting. Find it in our Super Trooper Aromatherapy Balm and It’s All Good Crystal Balm.
Grapefruit: Fresh, tangy and almost flowery, the essential oil of grapefruit promotes energy while simultaneously reducing tension. We use Grapefruit in Hop To It and Study Buddy Aromatherapy Balms.
Tangerine: This oil kicks off with and astringent vibe, and then settles down into a familiar citrus, taming tension and boosting mood. Tangerine is used in our Shield Me Crystal Balm.
Bergamot: Pungent and green, this restorative oil can help with insomnia and to release repressed emotions. We use Bergamot in the OG Aromatherapy Balm.
Sweet Orange: Mellow and sweet, like the very best version of an orange. The scent of Sweet Orange brings on optimism and can calm anxiety. We love Sweet Orange here at Mood Food! It’s in our OG, Flashy and Dreamy Aromatherapy Balms as well as our Balancing Act Crystal Balm.
With citrus essential oils comes a note of caution about phototoxicity. Some oils can cause a sunburn-like reaction when the sun’s rays hit the skin where the oil has been applied. On the list above, Lemon and Grapefruit oils can have this reaction when the concentrations of those oils are above certain percentages. At Mood Food, our formulations use the oils below the percentages that are known to cause the reaction. As for Bergamot, we use an organic Bergamot essential oil that has the reactive component, bergapten, removed from it. Tangerine and Sweet Orange essential oils do not have any phototoxic reactions in sunlight.
Most properties for the oils listed above come from the Aromahead Institute’s Aromatherapy Certification Program Data Sheets.
Additional information from The Complete Book of Essential oils and Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood, New World Library, 1991