Celery seed might seem an unlikely candidate for an aromatherapy oil; generally one thinks of it in cooking only. But celery seed definitely has a place in the ranks of therapeutic oils, even if its aroma is reminiscent of a good stew!
The essential oil is steam distilled from the whole or crushed seeds of the Apium graveolens plant. Its actions are anti-rheumatic, antispasmodic, carminative, nervine, sedative and tonic, to name a few.
Celery seed is known to increase the elimination of uric acid and therefore is an excellent aid in the relief of arthritis and rheumatism or with any problem where there is swelling and a high acidic condition, like gout and neuralgia. It helps to release toxins from the blood stream and thus, has been found to have a rejuvenating effect on the liver. The pain from sciatica seems to be greatly reduced when celery seed essential oil (mixed in a carrier oil) is massaged into the lower back and gluteal region and the nervous tension from the stress of the pain is eased with this calming oil. When pain from sciatica or swelling keeps you awake at night, a bath with celery seed and lavender before bed will help you to have a restful night. Even burned in an aroma lamp at bedtime will help soothe the body and mind, allowing for a peaceful sleep.
Celery seed is also helpful in relieving dyspepsia, flatulence and indigestion. Its calming effect on stomach acids reduces bloating and stomach discomfort. Its cleansing effect aids the kidneys in releasing toxins and eliminating excess water retention. It has been known to help in weight reduction as it suppresses the hunger cravings and the anxiety of dieting. Useful for the endocrine system, this oil balances menstrual cycles and alleviates cramping and uterine spasming. Celery seed is a great help whenever there is tension from pain, which means it is wonderful for PMS.
I have used celery seed in massage preparations for insomnia, headaches, and mental fatigue, for my clients, especially when stress and fear of a situation is holding them back from making decisions that would ease their mind. It balances the nerves and sedates the brain. In an oil burner, used in combination with frankincense or sandalwood, this soporific oil helps to create a peaceful environment for relaxation. It allows you to sink into a deep somniferous state.
So the next time you are stressed out, at your wits end and unable to relax and sleep, think about celery seed as a solution. Even munching on a celery stick can help!