Every couple of years I like to share a blog post on this very important topic as essential oils can be very dangerous when ingested, some more so than others. If you are considering ingesting an oil (or have been told it is safe by a multi level marketing seller, please reconsider and seek qualified advice.

This article is from Gillian Parkinson who is a qualified Clinical Aromascience Practitioner, and the creator of Le’Esscience Dispensary. Gillian has a passion for essential oils and has been using them for over 20 years. The beautifully scented Remedy Rollers and Mend Blend we sell are Gillian’s and I highly recommend them to help with a range of aliments.

I’m sure you’ve learned by now essential oils HAVE to be respected and the use of – and you know I advocate that if you are using them therapeutically for any age, it needs to be under the guidelines of a qualified essential oil practitioner (NOT an unqualified MLM reseller).

One of my wonderful long-term clients had a trip to Australia and while over there, she treated herself to an Aromatherapy massage. I have educated her well over the years she has been coming to me so she became a bit concerned when the masseuse started just splashing neat essential oils over her back. She said it smelt strong.

When the massage was over and the masseuse left the room so she could get changed, she very cleverly took photos of the oils used and show me the pics at her next appointment.

It was one of the MLM (multi-level marketing) brands – that’s ok BUT the oils used were NEAT Wintergreen and another neat blend that also contained Wintergreen. Wintergreen is a HAZARDOUS & highly toxic essential oil. I rarely use it in my practice and ONLY in cases where I can have a thorough consult. I follow the ‘use in low dilution’ recommendations plus Methyl salicylate must be absolutely avoided by anyone taking blood-thinning drugs, as it increases the action of the drug, and this causes blood to leak into tissues and internal bruising occurs.

I will use Wintergreen in acute cases of arthritis pain or muscle injury and only for 10 day periods (and remember, at a low low dose). This masseuse, with obviously ZERO essential oil ‘professional’ studies, was just splashing this all over my clients back, neat, undiluted! 

Wintergreen mainly contains the chemical Methyl Salicylate, it is very hard for the liver and kidneys to process – if accidentally ingested, it can cause severe damage to internal organs and has been known to cause death [ref: Essential oil safety, A guide for healthcare professionals by Robert Tisserand, Tony Balacs].

Wintergreen in it’s purest form is highly toxic. There are warnings for sports creams that contain Methyl Salicylate – there have been deaths reported


Not only was I concerned about my client, I am also extremely concerned about the masseuse, how often is she massaging in this way? She will be absorbing the chemicals from the essential oils through her hands, arms and olfactory system (via her pores, hair follicles and breathing it in) while she’s working. This is SERIOUS!

The massage business needs urgently change their methods of using essential oils immediately.

The second part of this post – an online customer contacted me as she was concerned when a MLM essential oil reseller tried to sell her NZ$340 of essential oils to treat her 8-month-old baby who was recovering from an uncomplicated cold and gastric bug. She asked me if she should buy the products, I told her to run!

I’m not exaggerating here! A baby does NOT need that amount of essential oils to treat simple health conditions – no health conditions! It would be causing more damage than good! Babies/ toddlers/children bodies, skin, organs, lymphatic system etc can’t handle large amounts – only a few drops and only ALWAYS diluted and only a select few essential oils are safe for this age group.

We had a wee chat and my online customer, at my recommendation purchased a baby safe Immunity Blend for $14.30 and after my advice, some acidophilus yoghurt to help rid of the gastric bug. It’s all the wee babe needed. I was appalled at the unqualified reseller – their primary focus/purpose is to make money. As a qualified practitioner (with years of experience) my primary focus is to help at every step, effectively and safely, where I can and I have a zero risk policy. My motivation is NOT money.

The third part of this post – a lady in the USA emailed me as she was concerned about if ingesting 1 drop of Lemon essential oil a day will be affecting her health.  She had gall bladder problems that her doctor could not put a finger on what the cause of. I asked her how long had she been ingesting Lemon essential oil this way and how long had she had the gallbladder problems, her response “3 months ingesting, 2 months gallbladder problems” – I asked her to stop immediately.  What she didn’t know is that essential oils have a cumulative effect, Lemon essential oil is a top note and stays in the system for 24 hours, there will have been a build up in her body which I believe will be causing the gallbladder problem, let alone the effect it will be having in her gut! One drop of Lemon Essential oil is the same strength as (depending on the brand between 25 & 70 cups of Lemon Herbal Tea, does this make sense to you? at all???

The Fourth part of this post – a lady in NZ was complaining she wondered if she had a stomach ulcer, she had been experiencing terrible pains in her stomach for months – after a discussion and questions, she revealed she had been ingesting Oregano essential oil, “but only one drop a day” – she had run out though a month beforehand but she was thinking she needed to get back into it.  This is SO ALARMING! Oregano is a middle note, stays in the system for 2-3 days AND it’s a HAZARDOUS essential oil! I implored her to go to her doctor as soon as possible – she had been advised ingest this oil, by the way, by an unqualified essential oil reseller.

So let’s add this to the reasons why it is SO important to work with a qualified essential oil practitioner. Adding to reasons which prompted me 2.5 years ago to write this post.

I’m sure there are some MLMs who may have qualifications but I still question their ethics as MLM essential oils are so much more expensive (due to the sales model and the number of people who have to have a clip of the ticket / sale on the way up the pyramid) and they have sales goals to reach so they can improve their sales status. At the end of the day, anyone who is purchasing MLM products is lining very rich owner’s pockets and making them richer. How they can control what their resellers are doing, which is high risk and potentially dangerous, is beyond me.

Go find someone qualified please {help spread the word too}.


For more information on this topic check out this article Is It Safe To Ingest Essential Oils