One of my favorite ways to stay fit and get my blood pumping is by doing some form of aerobic exercises like HIIT, jogging, swimming, and other forms of cardio. But I didn’t always relish the idea.
As someone who has physical-activity-induced asthma, I never thought it would ever be possible for me to do any of these exercises without regretting it. However, over the years, I have been able to listen closely to my body and gently build up my aerobic threshold with the help of essentials oils.
This is not to say that I never reach for my inhaler, I do! But the need to do so is far less than it used to be and I still make sure to have it on hand in case I need it.
Asthma can be a very serious condition with a variety of triggers so I absolutely recommend that you listen carefully to your own body and keep that inhaler handy!
Having said that, I do believe that essential oils have helped me immensely. They have allowed for improved lung capacity and a stronger respiratory system which has, in turn, greatly improved my aerobic performance.
I can simply use my personal nasal or Himalayan salt inhaler before, during, or after a workout and feel them open my lungs, loosen asthmatic congestion, and get in more of that much-needed oxygen.
The Best Essential Oils for Improving Aerobic Exercise
When looking for essential oils that help support respiratory function, you want to go for the ones high in 1,8 cineole (aka, eucalyptol).
It is this key constituent that helps cut through mucus, reduce swelling, and open up the airways.
Other properties of 1,8 cineole include the ability to:
- Kill bacteria, viruses, and fungus
- Reduce muscle spasms
- Reduce pain
- Suppress cough
Essential oils that contain high amounts of 1,8 cineole include:
- Eucalyptus globulus – safe for children 10 years and older
- Eucalyptus radiata – safe for children 10 years and older
- Helichrysum – safe for children 6 months and older
- Laurel leaf – safe for children 10 years and older
- Niaouli – safe for children 6 years and older
- Ravintsara – safe for children 10 years and older
- Rosemary – safe for children 10 years and older
- Saro – safe for children 10 years and older
To use these oils most effectively, all you need to do is select one or two essential oils from the above list and add them to a personal nasal inhaler, a Himalayan salt inhaler, OR make a roll-on.
For example, one of my favorite blends is:
- One 10ml roll-on bottle
- Carrier oil like jojoba or sweet almond oil
- 5 drops eucalyptus radiata essential oil
- 5 drops eucalyptus globulus essential oil
- 1 drop laurel leaf essential oil
Add the essential oils to the roller bottle. Next, fill the roller to the shoulder with carrier oil. Cap it closed and roll between your palms to mix.
Apply a few swipes to the throat and chest and breathe in deeply for a moment before exercise.
For an inhaler, you can add:
- 2 drops eucalyptus radiata essential oil
- 2 drops eucalyptus globulus essential oil
- 1 drop laurel leaf essential oil
Add the oils to the cotton insert, cap closed, and either gently inhale through each nostril for a few breaths or inhale orally. Do this gently for a few moments before exercise for the best results.
Additionally, you can diffuse any of these oils during your workout but I find a more direct application works best.
What have been your favorite essential oils to use for improving respiratory function during exercise? Please share in the comments below!
You may also enjoy reading:
How to Make Raven Essential Oil for Respiratory Support
20+ Effective Essential Oils for Cough
Essential Oils for Whooping Cough
Effect of Eucalyptus Oil Inhalation on Pain and Inflammatory Responses after Total Knee Replacement: A Randomized Clinical Trial
The Chemistry of Essential Oils Made Simple by David Stewart
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