Think you can pull off the flower god look? Not only do flowers make beautiful head decorations (Snapchat, anyone?) but they have many health and other benefits, as well. From essential oils to tasty garnishes, here are some of the many reasons to love flowers.
Their Smell Can Soothe
This is, perhaps, a relative statement and it really depends on what flowers we’re talking about, here. It’s probably safe to say, however, that most people like the smell of a good rose or honeysuckle. The next time you’re out and about, stop and smell the roses. No, really! Aromatherapy is a great way to relax and it doesn’t have to just entail being at a spa with candles lit all around the room. You can get your fix by simply deeply inhaling the nearest fresh flowers that give off a nice scent. Smelling flowers can actually reduce anxiety and elevate moods and psychological states. So if you’re feeling frazzled or stressed out, make sure to take a few moments to go outside, find the nearest flower bush or tree and enjoy the olfactory party.
Another way to enjoy aromatherapy is to heat up essential oils. As far back as the 10th century, Persians used this technique and it is still widely accepted today. Many other cultures, including the Chinese, have also been privy to this practice. Many health stores carry essential oils of all types including citrus and herbal oils, as well. If you don’t have a diffuser, you can simply put a few drops of your favorite oil in a pot and turn your stove on for a few minutes on low heat to fill your kitchen with the nice aroma. Or, if you want to carry the scent around with you, simply put a few drops on your neck, wrists, behind your knees, and on the inner parts of your elbows. This is sure to help keep your stress levels lower than usual and might even get some compliments on how good you smell.
They Taste Great
Ok, before you go out and start picking random flowers you should check out this chart. There are quite a few edible flowers to choose from and they make any dish look beautiful. That’s an Instagram food-gallery level 10 tip *wink*.
As you can see from the chart, there are all sorts of flavors provided by various flowers from sweet to spicy and even tangy. I actually had no idea that dandelions, lavender, and jasmine flowers were edible until just now. See, we’re both learning, here *smile*.
They Keep Clothes Fresh
Another great way to use essential oils is as an alternative to fabric softener. I ditched the store bought kind over a year ago. Instead, I cut an old hand towel into squares and whenever it’s time to put my clothes in the dryer, I put 8-10 drops of whatever essential oil I have (I usually go with fruits like orange or grapefruit but you can choose whatever flower essential oil you’d like) onto the towel and throw it into the dryer with my clothes. I love having clothes that have a faint hint of citrus and the best part is that I’m lessening my carbon footprint at the same time!
They Make Your Brain Work Better
Because of the aromatherapy and air purifying abilities flowers have, they help with cognitive performance. Having flowers, or any plants for that matter, in your office or home office environment will have the added bonus of helping you think more clearly.
They Heal the Sick
Hospital patients have been known to recover more quickly when there are flowers around. Those individuals with adoring visitors leaving flowers behind tend to have lower blood pressure, less anxiety, and need less pain medication than those without (of course, having people vising you is sure to lighten your mood, too).
Essential oils made from flowers can also be used for massages, aiding in the healing of physical pain. And since what we put on our skin gets absorbed and enters our blood stream, using oils made from roses, for example, can do all of those things mentioned below for our entire body. This includes decreasing inflammation which can help you feel better while your body recovers from injury.
They Make Great Decor
No wedding is complete without flowers but they don’t have to just be reserved for fancy celebrations. Check out this Pinterest Board for some decoration ideas.
Brighten up your home, room, or office while simultaneously adding that aromatherapy I talked about earlier. For best results, indoor potted flowers will be great because, well, they won’t die on you so quickly. If you don’t have a green thumb (you aren’t the only one) you can always get fake flowers and douse them in essential oils but just make sure they’re made from biodegradable materials.
They Keep the Air Clean
All plants help clean the environment around us by taking in the CO2 we exhale and exchanging it for the oxygen that we need to live. Any plants grown in your garden, on your patio, or indoors will help purify your surroundings by removing toxins such as formaldehyde, carbon monoxide, benzene, and trichloroethylene (to name a few). Check out this list of flowering plants that can be kept indoors.
They Are A Fountain of Youth
Rose petals have antibacterial properties and, as a result, can help heal wounds. Another diy way to use roses for the skin is to soak clean, organic petals in water and use the water as a toner and clean out your pores. Using the essential oils from roses can actually help fade scars, giving skin a more youthful appearance. Rose water helps to regulate the pH balance of the skin, has anti-inflammatory properties, can reduce redness and blotchiness, and and even help to eliminate acne (combined with a healthy diet and plenty of water intake, of course). This stuff is so great, it can even strengthen skin cells and help skin tissues regenerate. What?!
But wait, there’s more (infomercial salesperson voice)! Rose water can even help eliminate dandruff and can be used as a conditioner while soothing the scalp and calming inflammation.
Still not convinced? Try using flowers in your everyday life and see for yourself! Just make sure not to ingest the stuff. Oils are best used topically or inhaled.