There are many different types of essential oil companies, including the popular doTERRA. According to the company's website, the name doTERRA is derived from the Latin words for "gift of the earth."
They claim to stand apart from other essential oil companies for their oil harvesting and production techniques, including cold-pressing and steam distillation.
One of doTERRA's most popular oil blends is called "On Guard."
On Guard is advertised as a "protective blend,” used to support the immune system and help kill off harmful bacteria and viruses. It contains a blend of five essential oils, including:
- wild orange peel
- clove bud
- cinnamon bark/leaf
- eucalyptus leaf
- rosemary leaf/flower
On Guard is supposed to help the immune system work better by warding off harmful virus and bacteria. It’s also said to help the immune system fight off illness when it does occur.
Leah Outten, a doTERRA devotee and distributor, swears by using the oil for her family of soon-to-be seven. “[In] our family we have seen marked improvement in our immunity since starting to use it about three years ago,” Outten says. “We can now get through the winter seasons without constantly passing things around. If my kids do get something, they often can kick it out within 12 to 24 hours!”
Her secret to staying well? “I use it at the first hint of something,” she says. “It usually keeps things at bay so it doesn’t escalate to misery, which is awesome [because I’m] a mom of four who doesn’t get any down time.”
If you are looking for a chemical-free option to keep your sinks sparkling, as well as keep germs at bay, the oil can also be used as a natural household cleaner.
Although research is limited, there is evidence to suggest that the On Guard blend is effective in fighting off the influenza virus.
In a 2010 canine study, researchers found that On Guard weakened the influenza virus in canine cells that were infected. They also discovered that the oil can prevent the virus from being able to replicate as strongly. Although the virus was still able to replicate itself, it didn't produce as many viral proteins. This weakened the virus and made it easier for the immune system to attack it.
There are four primary ways to use the On Guard blend:
- by ingesting it
- by diffusing it into the air for aromatherapy purposes
- by using it on the skin
- by using it on surfaces as a household cleaner
To ingest On Guard, doTERRA recommends putting three to four drops into a veggie capsule or soaking apple slices in water after adding two to three drops of the oil. In general, you should dilute this oil before ingesting. Add one drop of oil to every 4 milliliters of water.
To diffuse the oil, you can add about four drops into your diffuser's liquid base. The oil will then diffuse into the air.
To apply to the skin, you should first dilute one to two drops of the oil in a base, such as coconut oil. Before applying this mixture, test it on a small area of skin. If you notice any irritation or inflammation, discontinue use. If you don’t experience any discomfort, it should be fine to apply to a larger area.
To use as a cleaner, add the desired amount of oil to water and spray on surfaces.
Risks and warning
Like any oil, On Guard can lead to skin sensitivity. Avoid direct sunlight or UV rays for up to 12 hours after using the product on your skin. If you have any skin conditions, such as eczema, you should consult your doctor before using this oil.
You shouldn’t apply On Guard to any sensitive areas on the body, such as the eyes, inside the ears, or any genital areas.
Applying undiluted essential oil may lead to skin irritation. Be sure to test the diluted essential oil mixture on a small patch of skin to determine whether you’ll have a negative reaction.
Children, women who are pregnant, and women who are breast-feeding shouldn’t use this essential oil without first consulting their doctor.
Tips and tricks
If you're looking for ways to protect yourself or your family from getting sick, there are a few other ways you can boost your immune system:
Get enough sleep
Sleep is the number one thing you can do to help your immune system function properly. It simply can't be stressed enough. Skimping on sleep affects every cell of your body in a negative way, but nowhere is that as evident as in your immune system. So get your Zzz's and make sure your kids get plenty of sleep as well.
Even as little as 10 minutes a day can make a difference. Research has shown that meditating can help your immune system work better, and it can even help you sleep better. It’s a win-win.
Exercising also boosts your immune system. For an even better pick-me-up, get your exercise outside with some fresh air and vitamin D, which is also an immune system booster.
On Guard is a special oil blend sold exclusively through doTERRA, so it's not available in stores. If you want to try On Guard, you can find a local oil distributor to order the oil from or request a sample of the oil before you purchase it.
Be sure to consult your doctor before use. It’s important to keep your doctor informed about any and all alternative treatments you’re using. They can work with you to assess the potential risks and benefits, as well as prevent any interaction with medications that you’re currently taking.