There are many reasons that someone might want to lose weight. Perhaps you’re an athlete competing in a weight-class sport and looking to ensure that you get into the perfect category. Or maybe you’re hoping to fit into a gorgeous dress for a big party or losing weight because of health concerns. Whatever your motivation, weight loss can be a long and slow process, but there are some things that can make it go a little more smoothly, like using essential oils to help promote fat burning, curb appetite, and boost metabolism.
One essential oil that receives a lot of attention for its weight loss benefits is bergamot essential oil. Bergamot is a plant that produces citrus fruits, and oil taken from the peel of the fruit is used to provide a range of health benefits, including remedying skin conditions, helping with pigment loss, warding off lice, and reducing anxiety.1
Additionally, there have been several studies about the effects of bergamot oil on lipid metabolism, fat loss, and cholesterol levels. One study looked at older adults with dyslipidemia and obesity and found that supplementing bergamot extracts could help to promote fat loss.2
Another study about the effects of bergamot on adults with elevated cholesterol levels found that that the essential oil could promote healthier cholesterol levels.
The study looked at 80 subjects over a period of six months and found that patients who took a bergamot extract benefited from reduced total cholesterol and triglycerides, as well as improvement in other important markers.3
How Essential Oils Can Promote Weight Loss
Essential oils work by stimulating the olfactory senses, which can consequently stimulate other parts of the brain resulting in reduced cravings and increased relaxation.
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Bergamot essential oil, in particular, contains high concentrations of polyphenols which are useful for reducing blood fats, preventing the absorption of cholesterol, and stimulating metabolism. In addition to this, essential oils, in general, can stimulate the endocrine system and combat stress. If you’re not stressed, then you’ll be less likely to comfort eat.
If you’re suffering from cravings that aren’t associated with comfort eating, then bergamot can help with those by helping distract from the craving. Typically, cravings pass after a few minutes, and the reduction in calorie intake that comes from not eating when you have cravings can be beneficial for supporting weight loss.
This is particularly true for people who have only a small amount of weight to lose. Often, it’s not the “eating junk food” or “eating too much at each meal” that causes weight gain, it’s the mindless snacking that adds up. Stopping that snacking will go a long way towards helping you reach your goal weight.
How To Use Bergamot Essential Oil for Best Results
The best time to use bergamot essential oil is before meals or at a time when you want to snack. If you’re really craving a sweet treat, smell some bergamot essential oil.
If you’re stressed or anxious, try inhaling some of the oil as well. Research shows that inhaling bergamot oil for just 15 minutes can help reduce cortisol levels. This will help reduce the inclination to comfort eat and will also help promote fat loss.4
If you don’t want to carry around a bottle of bergamot essential oil around, another option is to add a few drops of the oil to your shower and cover the drain. As you shower, the oil will be released into the steam. Breathe deeply and take your time showering. You’ll come out feeling refreshed and relaxed.
Weight loss is an ongoing series of decisions, not something that you focus on for a day or two then give up on.
The idea behind using essential oils to promote weight loss is that the oils give you an edge in terms of willpower. It’s easier to make good decisions if you aren’t fighting against cravings or hunger pangs.
In the long-term, your goal should be to re-tune your appetite so that you eat the right amount for you each meal. Everyone is different in that respect. Some people do well on three meals a day. Some people have a small breakfast and two bigger meals. Some people skip breakfast and save most of their calories for an evening meal.
Keep a food diary and also track how you feel with each meal, as well as how your energy levels are throughout the day. Figure out what lets you concentrate best, what helps you perform well in exercise, and what keeps your moods steady. Eventually, you will figure out what works best for you, and you will find something that you can stick to without feeling deprived.
If you’re having a difficult day, however, remember that starting your day with some bergamot oil to help to calm your appetite could well be the thing that makes the difference for you.