Essential oils are so popular nowadays that you can find them in huge number of products. Your face creams, body lotions and baths are usually composed of some kind of essential oil. This ingredient is very helpful when it comes to your health and it provides a rich smell and structure to a product you use.
One natural seed could be your new favorite. It comes from South America and has a large spectrum of benefits. Its name is tonka bean, an amazing seed of the Tonka tree. Other names for this bean are Dipteryx odorata or Baryosma tongo, so you can find it under those descriptions as well. The area of usage of tonka bean essential oil is large. Here are some reasons why you should start using it.
A gorgeous smell
Tonka bean is famous in industry of producing perfumes. Many famous scents are based on this natural smell. It usually replaces specific aroma of vanilla and gives special note to every perfume. You can also smell some ingredients that remind of almond and cinnamon.
The production of perfumes based on this seed started long time ago, in 18th century when French people discovered this beautiful smell and possibility to mix it with lavender and rose. Coumarin is a substance that is responsible for aroma of this seed and it is used even in making some dishes, despite some information that it is not good for organism.
Tonka bean essential oil is also a strong aphrodisiac in many cultures, because of sensual vanilla scent that is both attractive and amusing. If you want to feel sexy, go for some perfume that contains this aroma.
Effective against insects
Its natural ingredient, coumarin is proven to be responsible for small number of insects that attack the plant in nature. You can use this potent power and place few drops of tonka bean essential oil on the place where insects occur. It will immediately create a bad atmosphere for bugs, insects and flies. Some companies included this oil as an ingredient of natural pesticides for blocking the attack of pests.
When it comes to making combinations of natural oils, there is a powerful fixator. Tonka bean essential oil serves as a bond between other elements in products like perfumes. It enhances the smell and lasting on the skin. Natural base is very tenacious and gives caramel-like and vanilla aroma, which is adequate for other similar undertones in perfumes and cosmetics.
Blood clotting prevention
Some studies found that tonka bean essential oil has positive effects to our blood cells when used moderately. Coumarin has been added to some drugs that are described as blood thinners. One of them is Coumadin, a drug prescribed in the USA. Anti-coagulant effect of tonka bean is not officially proven, but people in South America and Africa believe in medical benefits of it.
If you had a close contact with snake and got bitten, you can use this oil to prevent further infection of the wound. Some tribes apply it in these situations and get fast results. As a powerful antiseptic, tonka bean essential oil brings relief in many cases. Bruises, cuts and wounds can be treated effectively and many infections disappear in a short period of time.
Have you ever tried tonka bean ice cream? That is maybe something you have missed to enjoy in. French cuisine is full of courses made of this bean. There are many specialties like creme brulees, sorbets and other sweets prepared with tonka bean. Oil made of this ingredient can be added to mayonnaise or some spirit to enhance the taste and aroma. It is still not part of mainstream way of cooking, but the potential of this natural product is huge.
So good it must be forbidden
This versatile bean has been forbidden in the USA for many years. In 1950s, official Food and Drug Administration declared tonka beans as illegal due to some side effects. One research showed that rats and other animals that consumed this seed got serious liver problems and damages of many other organs.
On the other side, people should not be concerned with these findings, because moderate consumption can not cause health troubles. It is not allowed in American cuisine, but you can enjoy it in many European and South American countries. Specific flavor will surely remain in your memory for a long period of time.
If we pay attention to the process of making tonka bean essential oil, we can notice it is very interesting. First, beans are usually removed from the fruit and left to dry. Natural drying is the best possible way, but sometimes artificial drying may be applied. After that, beans are soaked into some alcohol or rum for 24 hours to get the effect of swelling.
After removing from alcohol, it is good to leave them dry. Crystals of coumarin will appear on the surface and that is the sign of proper dryness. These icy crystals give specific aroma to the essential oil. At the end of the process, it has yellow or amber color and a very thick structure.
This oil can be very hard to find on the market and it is usually expensive. In some countries, it is considered as helpful in many healing cures. When used moderately, it gives you relief and its scent affects your mood. Many people who had some mild depression found tonka tree essential oil as an effective way to feel better in a moment. Benefits of this oil are numerous and widely proven. Some countries forbid it, some allow it, but one thing is certain.
It smells beautifully and gives special note to every soap, perfume and cream when added in a small amount. Industry and cuisine have a potent ingredient, which becomes more popular each day. Next time you find tonka bean essential oil, do not hesitate to try it in some product. You will be amazed by results and that smell will last in your nose for a long time.