The chemotype

We have mentioned before that it is of the utmost importance to know precisely the exact origin of an essential oil (type of plant, geographical origin, time of harvest, part of the plant distilled, distillation technique used, etc.) before contemplating using it for therapeutic purposes. 

In this context, modern science provides us with an essential tool, the "chemotype" (or biochemical type of the essential oil). By defining the chemotype, one can know precisely the biochemical components present in the essential oil, and thereby determine its therapeutic properties. Biochemically different, two chemotypes originating from the same plant will present not only different therapeutic activities but also variable toxicities.

The techniques used to determine the chemotype also allow to control the quality of an essential oil insofar as they make it possible to detect any traces of denaturation by addition of chemicals or other essential oils or any presence of fertilizer residues or pesticides.

Continue reading: >> The steam distillation process