Does lavender oil cause disorders in the work of the endocrine glands?

Is it true that lavender essential oil can become an endocrine disruptor? Studies and warnings about this have cast doubt in recent years. The rumor detector make a point.

The origin of the rumor

2017, the French magazine 60 million consumers He warns his readers not to use this essential oil and tea tree oil (Melaleuca alternifolia) Both are regularly used in personal hygiene products, detergents, and aromatherapy devices, although they are rarely found together in the same product. They have been accused of being able to induce hormonal imbalances by acting as endocrine disrupting agents.

Some rare studies

The post caused quite a stir, but it wasn’t the first to raise this issue. From 2007, a A study published in New England Journal of Medicine It was concluded that prepubertal gynecomastia (abnormal breast development) in three boys aged 4, 7 and 10 years, coincided with the use of essential oil products and that disease symptoms disappeared when these products were not used extensively. By studying cell lines, researchers have concluded that both lavender and tea tree essential oils have estrogen-boosting and anti-androgenic effects.

Other study, who also looked at three cases of prepubertal gynecomastia in boys, suggested in 2016 that the essential oils of lavender and tea tree could – under as-yet-undefined conditions – mimic the action of hormones and thus act as endocrine disruptors.

The suspected association between gynecomastia and regular exposure to lavender oil or tea tree oil was reinforced by an in vitro study, i.e. involving cells only, Foot At the 2018 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Endocrinology. studying It appeared the following year. Its authors, researchers at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences in the United States, tested the effect of eight essential oils on human cancer cells. Their conclusion: The chemicals in these oils disrupt the normal activity of hormones. They say some chemicals can mimic estrogen and block testosterone, leading to hormonal imbalance.

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However, these few studies have been done on a small scale, and they are far from establishing a direct link between essential oils and endocrine disruption. a literary magazine The publication in 2020 found no evidence linking tea tree essential oil to an endocrine disorder in children, and there is little or no evidence to support the relationship between lavender essential oil and an endocrine disorder in children.

Rule

There is not enough data to establish a link. The studies were done on the essential oils, not the lavender itself, plus they covered very few cases.

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