Eucalyptus globulus, also known as Blue Gum, is the main source of eucalyptus oil used globally.
Leaves are steam distilled to extract the oil, which is a colorless liquid with a strong, sweet, woody scent. It contains 1,8-cineole, also known as eucalyptol.
The leaves also contain flavonoids and tannins; flavonoids are plant-based antioxidants, and tannins may help to reduce inflammation. Eucalyptus features in a range of preparations to relieve symptoms of the common cold, for example, cough lozenges and inhalants.
Also, eucalyptus oil vapor appears to act as a decongestant when inhaled. It is a popular home remedy for colds and bronchitis.
It may act as an expectorant for loosening phlegm and easing congestion. A number of cough medications include eucalyptus oil, including Vicks VapoRub.
The antibacterial and antimicrobial potential of eucalyptus has been harnessed for use in some mouthwash and dental preparations.
In promoting dental health, eucalyptus appears to be active in fighting bacteria that cause tooth decay and periodontitis.
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