The health benefits of rue essential oil can be attributed to its properties as an antidote to poison, as we as an anti-arthritic, anti-rheumatic, antibacterial, anti-fungal, insecticidal, sedative, digestive, anti-epileptic, and anti-hysteric substance.
The essential oil of rue is extracted by steam distillation of the fresh plants of Rue, which has a botanical name of Ruta Graveolens. The main components of this oil are Bergaptene, Butanone, Nonanone, Nonyl Acetate, Psoralen, Undecanone, and Xanthotoxin.
Rue, or Ruta as it is commonly known, has been a well known item in various homeopathic systems of medicine, and like most of the herbal extracts which these medicines are made from, it is very poisonous. Again, ironically, it is this toxic or poisonous effect of Rue that makes it useful as a medicine. The utmost care should be taken while handling this essential Oil of Rue and direct contact with the skin or eyes, as well as smelling or ingestion, should be avoided.
The poisonous quality of the plant is the negative aspect of Rue essential oil, but let’s explore some of the positive points.
Health Benefits of Rue Essential Oil
Antifungal: The same toxic nature of this essential oil explains its anti-fungal properties as well. It can effectively terminate fungal growth both inside and outside of the body and can provide protection against fungal diseases like Athletes foot, dermatitis, de-complexion of the skin, and various types of food poisoning.
Antidote to Poison: Rue essential oil, since it is poisonous to begin with, acts as an antidote for a number of other poisons and can be administered against symptoms of poisoning. However, it is effective on neurotoxins, not on hemotoxins. It can also be helpful to counter poisoning and induce vomiting in case any poisonous substances are ingested. It is particularly beneficial against intoxication by narcotics, venomous snake bites (snakes like cobras and king cobras, which have neurotoxic venom, not vipers which have hemotoxic venom), insect bites, and stings.
Antibacterial: The toxic nature of Rue essential oil is effective in killing bacteria and preventing bacterial infections. If it has be taken orally, which is normally recommended against, it should be taken in very, very mild concentrations and under supervision by an expert. It can help you get rid of food poisoning by bacteria like salmonella, bacterial infections in the colon, intestines, and urinary tract, as well as those on the skin.
Insecticidal: This is yet another bright aspect of the toxic properties of this oil. It is more poisonous to insects and is thus effective in killing and driving them away. It can be used in vaporizers, fumigants, burners, and incense sticks to keep away insects.
Anti-Arthritic & Anti-Rheumatic: It is effective in reducing pain in the joints associated with arthritis and rheumatism due to de-sensitizing and numbing effects, which work in a similar way to an anesthetic.
Nervous Sedative: The neurotoxic nature of this oil acts as a sedative for the nerves and calms down nervous disturbances and afflictions, convulsions, and nervous hyper-activity, that can often result in trembling limbs and uncontrolled involuntary actions.
Digestive: Although it is not known to promote digestion, it can help to relieve indigestion, particularly digestive issues that result from bacterial infections or activities.
Anti-epileptic & Anti-hysteric: Being a nervous sedative, it is very effective in countering epileptic and hysteric attacks. The neurotoxins in this oil induce numbness in the nerves and make them completely relaxed and de-sensitized, thereby making the patient calm, inactive and tranquilized.
Other Benefits: It can be used as a disinfectant and in the treatment of boils and warts, as well as swelling that results from insect bites and stings.
A Few Words of Caution: It acts as an irritant to the skin and mucus membrane and it is phototoxic, neuro-toxic and abortifacient. Being an abortifacient, it can result in accidental abortions, so it should be strictly avoided while pregnant.