Feitcontrole: de voordelen van het aanbrengen van etherische oliën in de navel zijn twijfelachtigjuli 19, 2020
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Melissa Badamo USA TODAY
Published 1:35 PM EDT Jul 4, 2020
The claim: There are health benefits to putting different oils in your belly button
Essential oils, which are concentrated plant extracts, have been used around the world for centuries to promote psychological and physical well-being.
A May 22 Facebook post claims that putting different oils in and on the belly button can help with ailments like chapped lips, menstrual cramps, bloating, joint pain and more.
The page has not responded to USA TODAY’s request for comment.
How and why are essential oils used?
Essential oils are most commonly used in aromatherapy to relieve ailments like depression, indigestion, headaches, insomnia, muscular pain, respiratory problems, skin conditions and more, according to an article in the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine, the official publication of Hainan Medical University in China.
Aromatherapy is practiced by smelling essential oils, which stimulates olfactory receptors in the brain that sets off reactions in the body like muscle relaxation, a boosted immune system, and increased blood and oxygen circulation, according to Therapy Directory’s website.
More: Fact check: Citrus steam cannot kill viruses such as the coronavirus
An article in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that inhaling lavender essential oil significantly reduces stress. This healing method has been successful in numerous studies and is listed on Britain’s National Health Service’s website as a complementary and alternative medicine because it is considered a treatment that falls outside of mainstream health care.
Essential oils can also be absorbed through the skin and enter the bloodstream, according to Naturopathic Doctor News and Review, but they must be diluted in carrier oils to prevent skin irritation.
The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center offers a list of common essential oils and their uses. These include chamomile for cold, fevers and nausea; clove for dental and pain relief; lavender for calming and sleep; and rosemary for skin, hair health and joint healing. However, these oils should not be used in place of medication, but rather to complement it.
“Essential oils are a fantastic way to help with myriad issues such as sleeplessness, nausea, anxiety, allergies and pain,” said Michele Mack, LMT, CPMT, a licensed massage therapist at Ohio State Integrative Medicine.
More: 17 things to help with self-care and relaxation at home
However, can putting oils in your navel also yield health benefits, as the post claims?
What is the ‘Pechoti Method?’
The process of putting oil in your navel is considered a part of Ayurveda, a traditional Indian healing system rooted in the belief that health and wellness depend on a balance between the mind, body, and spirit, according to WebMD, an online publisher of health care information.
The National Center for Biotechnology Information, a division of the U.S. National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health, says the current scientific evidence in support of Ayurvedic medicine is “extremely poor” despite many anecdotal reports. Continuous research is needed to reach a conclusion on how safe and effective Ayurvedic procedures are.
More: Fact check: A mix of honey and cinnamon may have some health benefits, more studies needed
The Facebook post calls the process of putting oil in your navel the Pechoti Method because it claims the Pechoti gland sits behind the navel. However, we cannot find any scientific evidence that this gland exists.
The post also says all of the body’s veins are connected to the navel, making it the focal point of our body, and that, “The total amount of blood vessels we have in our body is equal to double the circumference of the earth.”
What is the navel, exactly?
The navel is a scar tissue resulting from the detachment of the umbilical cord after birth. The umbilical cord, which provides oxygen and nutrients from mother to child during pregnancy, contains three vessels – two arteries and one vein. Once the umbilical cord is removed, the vessels close up.
After the umbilical vein degenerates, a ligament connected to the liver remains, but its purpose is to divide the liver into two sections according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information.
More: Why you need to know about Ayurveda, the latest wellness craze
Clinical herbalist David Harder said, “The belly button is a sealed orifice. Right after birth when the umbilical cord is severed, then you have open tissue, but when the belly button matures, it’s not a whole lot different, in my opinion, than applying (oils) to the forearm, the back of the knee, the elbow, or anything like that. I don’t see the advantage of applying an essential oil at that particular location.”
Harder said that essential oils used topically on the skin certainly have value, as long as they are diluted in carrier oils to ensure that they are safe for application.
Our ruling: Partly false
The claim that putting essential oils in your belly button can yield health benefits is PARTLY FALSE, based on our research. It is true that applying essential oils to your skin can promote well-being, often when used in conjunction with a medical regime. But we found no scientific evidence that the Pechoti Method as described in the post works outside of anecdotal reports and tradition. The navel becomes closed off once the umbilical cord is detached at birth, so according to expert opinion, putting diluted oils in your belly button would most likely have the same degree of benefits as applying oil to any other part of the skin.
Our fact check sources:
- Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine: “Essential Oils Used in Aromatherapy: A Systemic Review”
- Therapy Directory: Aromatherapy
- Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine: “The Effect of Lavender Oil on Stress”
- National Health Service: “Complementary and Alternative Medicine”
- Naturopathic Doctor News and Review: “Dermal Absorption of Essential Oils”
- WebMD: “What Is Ayurveda?”
- National Center for Biotechnology Information: “Bridging Ayurveda with Evidence-based Scientific Approaches in Medicine”
- National Center for Biotechnology Information: “Anatomy, Abdomen and Pelvis, Falciform Ligament”
- Family Education: “The Role of the Umbilical Cord”
- Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center: “How and Why to Use Essential Oils”
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