HealthNotes

HealthNotes

Healthnotes offers comprehensive, science-based health and lifestyle information. Written with you in mind, Healthnotes answers the most commonly asked questions with credible, easy-to-understand information — edited by physicians who review over 550 scientific and medical journals to keep content current, factual, and balanced.

Eucalyptus

Also indexed as:Eucalyptus globulus
Eucalyptus: Main Image© Martin Wall
Botanical names:
Eucalyptus globulus

Parts Used & Where Grown

Eucalyptus is an evergreen tree native to Australia but is cultivated worldwide. The plant’s leaves—and the oil that is steam-distilled from them—are used medicinally.1

  • Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
  • Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
  • For an herb, supported by traditional use but minimal or no scientific evidence. For a supplement, little scientific support.

Our proprietary “Star-Rating” system was developed to help you easily understand the amount of scientific support behind each supplement in relation to a specific health condition. While there is no way to predict whether a vitamin, mineral, or herb will successfully treat or prevent associated health conditions, our unique ratings tell you how well these supplements are understood by the medical community, and whether studies have found them to be effective for other people.

For over a decade, our team has combed through thousands of research articles published in reputable journals. To help you make educated decisions, and to better understand controversial or confusing supplements, our medical experts have digested the science into these three easy-to-follow ratings. We hope this provides you with a helpful resource to make informed decisions towards your health and well-being.

This supplement has been used in connection with the following health conditions:

Used for AmountWhy
Sinusitis
Take an amount containing 200 mg of cineole three times dailyas Cineole2 stars[2 stars]
The main ingredient of eucalyptus oil, cineole, may help speed the healing of acute sinusitis.
Athletic Performance
Refer to label instructions as Eucalyptus Topical1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus-based rubs have been found to warm muscles in athletes. This suggests that eucalyptus may help relieve minor muscle soreness when applied topically.
Bronchitis
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus leaf tea is used to treat bronchitis and inflammation of the throat, and is considered antimicrobial.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus is used traditionally to promote mucus discharge.
Common Cold and Sore Throat
Eucalyptus oilas Eucalyptus Oil1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus oil is often used in a steam inhalation to help clear nasal and sinus congestion.
Cough
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Historically, herbal practitioners have recommended a steam inhalation of eucalyptus vapor to help treat asthma, bronchitis, whooping cough, and emphysema.
Genital Herpes
Refer to label instructions as Eucalyptus Topical1 star[1 star]
Research suggests that substances found in eucalyptus have potential benefit for topical prevention of genital herpes.
Halitosis
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Volatile oils made from eucalyptus have antibacterial properties and may be effective in mouthwash or toothpaste form.
Infection
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus is an herb that directly attack microbes.
Low Back Pain
Refer to label instructions as Eucalyptus Topical1 star[1 star]
A combination of eucalyptus and peppermint oil applied directly to a painful area may help by decreasing pain and increasing blood flow to afflicted regions.
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Refer to label instructions as Eucalyptus Oil1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus oil has been used historically to treat rheumatoid arthritis. Applied to painful joints, it may help relieve rheumatoid arthritis symptoms.
Sinus Congestion
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus oil is often used in a steam inhalation to help clear nasal and sinus congestion.
Sinusitis
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Eucalyptus oil is often used in a steam inhalation to help clear nasal and sinus congestion. It acts on receptors in the nasal mucous membranes, leading to less stuffiness.

Traditional Use (May Not Be Supported by Scientific Studies)

Eucalyptus was first used by Australian aborigines, who not only chewed the roots for water in the dry outback but used the leaves as a remedy for fevers. In the 1800s, crew members of an Australian freighter developed high fevers, but were able to successfully cure their condition using eucalyptus tea. Thus, eucalyptus became well known throughout Europe and the Mediterranean as the Australian fever tree. Early 19th century Eclectic physicians in the United States not only used eucalyptus oil to sterilize instruments and wounds, but recommended a steam inhalation of the vapor of its oil to help treat asthma, bronchitis, whooping cough, and emphysema.2

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The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2015.

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