doTERRA (Malaysia) – beneficial or placebo. Thinking of getting on the LRP?

I have been using doTERRA Touch Peppermint quite a lot recently at work. My intrigued colleague who was sharing the work desk hence asked whether I think essential oils has a therapeutic effect or just a placebo.

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I told him that I believe there is a biochemistry pathway as to how these oils work, only we haven’t got enough research or trials to measure its effectiveness. Which results in us, healthcare professionals not being able to endorse it as having medicinal properties to cure a certain ailment. And as we all know, testimonies are the lowest form of evidence in science although ironically, in modern society, it ranks the highest.

I am convinced of such pathways (existing benefits) because of two scenarios I’ve experienced in my life.

  1. We puke when we smell something putrid. The sense of smell sends signals to the brain causing our body to react accordingly. The free smell of Famous Amos makes you salivate and want a cookie. And maybe the smell of some other substance will make you feel full and not hungry. Hence, diffusing oils makes sense to me.
  2. When a patient has paraquat poisoning, we remove every single clothing from the patient and wash him/her with enough soap and water. We also protect ourselves by wearing appropriate barrier clothing. It is because the poison exerts its effects in such a way that if you have enough paraquat on your skin and is absorbed through the layers, it can shut down the whole bodily system.  Therefore, topical application makes sense to me. I take note on the caution to dilute the oils when used in certain age groups and am keen to understand the layering method. I wish hard to find a class (locally) where I can learn about Aromatouch massage techniques.

I am very particular on which oils I take internally because for me Natural is not always safe. Unless they’re from credible sources. I mean, if you were lost in a jungle, are you confident to eat every single fruit/leaf there just because it’s natural? Tak kan.. so we should use the same approach for oils. Yes, I know that the plants of which we extract the oils from are not alien or less than strange but still, until thorough research is done, as a person trained in medicine and does not wish for my licenses to be revoked, I would really like to know its Therapeutic Index. We will get there one day, doTERRA! I believe in you!

So far, I feel safe ingesting the citrus groups. I have no qualms when it comes to putting a drop of lemon in my tea. Or grapefruit in my drinking water. What more wild orange in my hot chocolate. But I am a bit wary of oils I am not familiar with. So I take a step back, read a bit and make an informed choice. Perhaps later, I will gain confidence to try the others.

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I AM ON THE LOYALTY REWARDS PROGRAMME (LRP)

Next month is my birthday and since I am a member on the Loyalty Rewards Programme (LRP), I cannot wait to redeem my free birthday oil. I hope it is a good one. 10 months into doTERRA, I do feel that it has brought on significant changes to my life. Despite the many perceptions that it is expensive,to me it is a long term investment for ones health. If you know how to manipulate your LRP and purchases, you can actually save a lot over the months and gradually years. Even if you spend less than RM250 per month, or RM50.. on the LRP programme, you can still gather the rewards. 

Take a look at these oils from my personal collection.

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Each oil here cost less than RM100, a few less than RM50. I can actually be on the LRP programme and 50PV worth of oils  monthly to get at least 10% back in product points  from my purchase, which I can collect and redeem within a year to get free oils. The maximum percent I can get back is 30% and that is worth a lot of oils.

1 PV = USD 1. So, if you convert in RM, that’ll be about RM 4? So, here comes the catch.

WHATS THE CATCH? 

  • I must buy something every month. At least just above RM200 to grow my percentage. But if I do not have a budget for that month, I can keep the account active by buying something less than 50PV. Consequently, my points would not ‘mature’ but if say, I am already at a 20% priviledge, at least that is maintained and kept on hold. My previous PV points accrued are also maintained. I get to collect more points and go up my percentage once I begin to purchase at 50PV (minimum) again.
  • You can only max out to 30% of credit points. And to collect PV, your expenditures per month still need to be above 50PV. So be prepared to fork out at least RM250 per month cause shipping is a flat rate of RM15. Unless, you choose pickup option at the centre.
  • I will receive a package every month and thankfully the packaging has become more eco-friendly. So rumah tak semak dengan kotak. 
  • If budget is a factor, I must be very patient as I buy these oils bit by bit every month just so I could use them. But fret not, if you have Speedy, ‘Greedy’ friends like Yours Truly, you can ask from me for samples. Knowing myself, memang akan bagi punya. Ha ha

I am currently curating my LRP order for August. I have just a few points under 100PV to finish off and I am thinking of getting a Jasmine DT roller for my point redemption items. It’s one of those expensive ones. LOL. I just wish doTERRA would have more diffusers. Especially the cute ones for kids bedroom. At a reasonable price! I would definitely buy one. Or two. Maybe 3. he he

If you need a one to one consult, send me an email at yasmin0508@gmail.com. I advocate in Melaka, Selangor and occasionally Kuching. If you live elsewhere, I can help you connect with a fellow advocate near your respective locations. Or if you’re like me, who may prefer to explore at your own pace and enroll yourself, do use my personal link. And later if you want to keep in touch and want me to guide you, you can also drop me an email.

InsyaAllah you will never go wrong with doTERRA.

Body Scrub Workshop by Workshop 17

MainPlaceMall USJ had a Craft Fair happening just this weekend. I loved that apart from the craft, there were stationaries and plenty of workshops to join in. I missed the Stationery Buffet though.  *cry glitter* Haih, if only I lived in USJ. There were a lot of interesting stalls. I even had a henna tattoo drawn on my hand.

I signed up for the Body Scrub Class hosted by Workshop 17. Although my mom was like skeptic and remarked ,” benda tu pun nak belajar?” – I deafened my ears and went for it anyway. Moms like that. Lepas tu dia nak jugak. Ha ha ha.

I used Google Maps to navigate my way to Mainplace Mall and it was only a 20 min drive from my moms house. The kids? Left them with the dad.

Our instructor for the hour was called Yen. She was so pretty and gentle. Always encouraging us to be creative. She even gave us extra tips on how to further make our scrubs become prettier.

We each received a goodie bag. Inside, there were 2 empty jars for us to put our scrubs in, a wooden spatula and cute, instruction cards showing us how to make these things. I was so pleased.

I signed up for the class online at a fee of RM 79/pax. This is after Craft Affair announced it on their IG page. As usual, I was anxious for having to go alone. And meet new people. Although I also have that part of me who wants to hang out with new friends. New butterflies, maybe? hihi. So the Introvert needs to be at least an Ambivert during these events.

We have the option of creating our scrubs from either essential oils or food meaning oatmeals, coffee, cocoa and green tea. The base is sugar. Be it brown or white sugar. Then we have food gel for colours with various ‘toppings’ such as rose petals and buds. I thought the table was colourful.

These are mine.

1 : Chocolate + vanilla + rose water

( to wind down and relax)

2 : Lemon + grapefruit + bergamot

( to freshen and revitalize)

Yen did caution us to keep the jars in a cool area. But not the fridge. And definitely not under the sun or in the heat of a closed room.

I came home from the class learning something new. I think it is something that I could do at home and teach others.  I look forward to attend classes similar like this in the future like making lip balms and such. Perhaps later, I will gain my wings to become a better Butterfly Blogger and then, I’d have enough experience and courage to attend next years Butterfly party. InsyaAllah.

🧕 doTERRA : My citrus selection

I ordered 5 types of oils, mostly in the citrus category in my November LRP.

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The popular Wild Orange, Bergamot, Grapefruit, Lime and Litsea. Well, Litsea or may chang is actually a shrub but has a lemon-y smell.

The oils do have an overview on what they are in the Malaysian doTERRA website. It is however very brief and I am sure any well meaning advocate would want to learn more about their oils right? So if the oils are truly what they are, it would not be wrong to say, Google Search ‘Lemon” and read the many , hopefully trustable sites regarding the compounds in Lemon. And how it can add that extra value in our lives.

On another note, reading up on these things are important for me as a medical doctor because you know how in adverts of products, they would put a disclaimer like ‘consult your doctor first” sort of thing. Well, most of my colleagues would be very quick to say ‘nope. don’t’ template answer. However, in my limited experience working as a doctor, I find that patients still go ahead with their intended choices anyway. And their health would deteriorate when there is an inevitable interaction between these substances of natural and modern medicine. So perhaps the best thing that I could do is to read up, learn stuff, see if I can assimilate certain practices or try to achieve the middle road where we give and take with the patient on some routines or practices.

Natural stuff can be poison if it is not consumed or used in a proper manner. Just like modern medicine. Which is why we have regular appointments to assess and adjust medications accordingly and monitor progress or presence of side effects through blood investigation or technical modalities. We cannot for now, measure effectiveness or monitor adverse outcomes of these natural products. The  best we  have are testimonies/ word of mouth. Therefore it is very important to try and practice what is safe. Boleh share benefit tapi jangan terlalu excited. What may work for Person A may not work for Person B. 

Example, a person with a BP of 140/90 may not require treatment yet and can benefit from regular monitoring and if they like, safe use of essential oil. But you cannot advocate the same for someone who has a baseline BP of 200/120, tell them to stop their meds and use the oils only. It would tarnish doTERRA’s good reputation. If as advocates, we start making hyperbola claims then we are no different from those selling fishy products and sponsor a show for example. An advocate would know where the limitations are. doTERRA has clearly mentioned in their manual,

No Curative or Drug Claims

doTERRA claims

Back to the point of this post. So far, the basic information I gathered regarding citrus is that they;

  • are used best to energize and uplift the mood. They are also rich in both antioxidant and antibacterial properties
  • are photosensitive because of a compound called bergapten found in almost all these fruits. Hence, it is not wise to apply a citrus based oil on your skin and then sunbathe or go for a tan. Unless you want to be ikan masin.
  • apart from being diffused, they can be ingested. However, I must caution that users who intend to do so, must do them at their own discretion and AFTER reading up on what is safe and what is not. jangan diminum mcm air 100 plus plak.  Be Safe.

I also chanced upon in my reading regarding organic properties which are specific to certain citrus oils which I feel compelled to share for our own knowledge. I mean, most of the things I write here are available on the world wide web. I am just extracting these findings and documenting it here for my own references.

Bergamot

From pictures, we can say it is close to Limau Purut. Correct me if I am wrong. I bet you can imagine the aroma already. Tak lain tak tumpah gitew. Bergamot in doTERRA is harvested from Italy. In fact, doTERRA have the Global Botanic Network where they work with farms all over the world to help source their oils.

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The Statin like property in bergamot was an interesting fact for me. It could be a useful point in assessing my patients with dyslipidaemia.

 

Grapefruit

Grapefruit or the ‘forbidden fruit’ as it is known in Barbados is rich in Vitamin C. It boasts of having a low GI index hence suitable for diabetics, I guess. In our local setting, it looks like Limau Bali. 

Interestingly, grapefruit has a compound called furanocoumarin compound in it which may affect the metabolism and clearance of drugs in our system.

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As for the remaining oils, I have yet to find any significant compound that could influence a user in how they choose to use them.

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Lemon at work in the antenatal clinic

Nowadays, I  use my citrus oils more in the diffuser and as a topical application.

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Diffusing Lime as a single oil

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Sometimes I make a blend. Peppermint & Wild orange is heavenly

I have been making my own Foot Rollerblends too. I buy the glass bottles through Shopee and mix doTERRA oils with carrier oils for safer application. I think I will elaborate more on that in my next post – on dilution and carrier oils. InsyaAllah

🧕dÔTERRA : Deep Blue & Peppermint, the Minci experience

We all know the usual essential oils (EO). The safe ones that we are most familiar with are for instance Lavendar, Lemon and Peppermint. You can never go wrong with these scents. Regardless which company you prefer.

But I found gems in dÕTERRA with the Home Essential Kit. And like any dÔTERRA user, we feel inclined to share if we find it good and useful. I guess I am a Sharer now. A mini advocate. 

1. dÕTERRA Deep Blue

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If only I discovered this oil sooner when I was working in the Emergency Unit in the hospital, I think my stress levels would be lowered by at least 50% at bedtime. It is because I was on my feet almost all the time and the leg sores were aggravated when I was pregnant. Now that I am in a clinic setting, I work less on my feet but my back still hurts from the long hours of sitting down and holding the bladder. LOL.

Deep Blue from how I understand it, is a Soothing Blend. Perfect for a massage after a long day at work. Or an essential item in your gym/zumba bag. In a way, when you run out that LMS Cream you have to beg for your doctor for, or that minyak kuda you have trouble looking for – consider Deep Blue. DO NOT CONSUME IT! RUB IT!

I have been using Deep Blue to massage my feet before going to bed at night. I personally love that minty, airy, tingling sensation it leaves on my feet. I would be fast asleep in less than 5 minutes because it is really soothing. Not surprising as the blends have an assortment of ingredients such as peppermint, wintergreen, Ylang Ylang, Cammomile to name a few.

If I need to use it to massage my lower back, which is a lot more surface area – I will dilute it with the Fractionated Coconut Oil (FCO). It’s safer to apply on more sensitive skin. Furthermore, it comes in a 5ml bottle , so of course I would like it to last longer before I buy another bottle. Hehe..

Fun Fact : The oil is seriously blue. 

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2. PEPPERMINT

Sounds ordinary. Normal. But the effect is immense and refreshing. We all know its common benefits. And famous uses in toothpastes, breathmints, mocktail, in tea.

But here is what I discovered for myself. MYSELF. 

When I diffuse peppermint as a single oil, meaning I don’t add in other oils – I can feel the minty freshness sticking on my face. Like candy. In a good way. Especially when the diffuser is very near to me – like on my study table while I get some after work studying done.

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Another eureka moment was when I diffused peppermint while doing my household chores. My chores can easily take up one day which means I will not shower until I get them done. Can you imagine how terrible it can get for a lady to smell in the hot, humid weather of Malaysia doing chores in her kaftan? Dengan peluhnya. Tengiknyaa. Until Peppermint came into my life. Blessed. You feel fresh despite the sweat because the particles diffused somehow got stuck to you. So you would feel alright delaying the shower for a bit just so you can finish your chores.

Tak payah mandi, diffuse saja peppermint. HA HA HA.

I have made orders for a more citrus-y selection next month in my November LRP. I hope I could find more favourite oils to use. I am aiming to transform my guest bathroom into a wellness-spa like ambience fueled by doTERRA products. We will see how that goes. It should be a fun project.

🧕doTERRA Home Essentials Kit (Malaysia)

I bought my dÕTERRA Home Essentials Kit and enrolled as a member under Madam Fera’s team. Such a lovely lady and very helpful with her advice. Enjoyed going through her materials in the watsapp group as well.

The kits costs me RM1249.00 (promo) which included the membership fee as well. I signed up as a member because I want to buy my oils at my own pace whenever I want to without having to go through the hassle of ordering it through someone and then followup with them, then pay them online thereafter. And maybe, just maybe later, if I really love the idea of thoroughly incorporating EO’s into my daily life – I might become an active Wellness Advocate. Until that time comes, I am just going to explore and enjoy it as it is and share whatever I love about it with my family first.

As a member, I can plan my purchases accordingly. Of course, there a few types of membership plans. But that is not the purpose of this post. Today, I am just going to elaborate my thoughts on the Home Essential Kit.

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First of all, who on earth assembled this kit? Mat salleh kahhhhhhh.. Coz I think some of the selections are like.. uh.. ok… perhaps for the True Malaysian edition – they would consider replacing the Oregano with Lemongrass? Or Cinnamon? Aku nak tuang mana EO Oregano bebanyak ni. Actually, I did try putting a few drops in my spaghetti. It was gross. I think I put in too much because I got too excited. So first lesson learnt;

LESS IS MORE

Once I got my kit, I took all my oils out and labelled them. This is to make sure that I will use every single one of them. Not one is hidden. The kit comes with an introductory packet which is awesome. At least you know a few things about the founders of the company and their mission statement. doTERRA clearly mentioned that their oils are not drugs that heal medical illnesses. They are supportive measures. So if you have a treatable medical condition, please seek advice accordingly.

Mohon Hadam wahai pengguna2 yang overclaim. We do not want to dampen the efforts  or tarnish the clean image made by the founders .

This kit has 10 oils + 1 bottle of fractionated coconut oil which can be used as an oil carrier/dilution for topical application + 1 petal diffuser. Kecik sebenarnya diffuser tu. Dlm gambar nampak besau. Tapi cutelah.

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I was caught by surprise when the lavender and peppermint smelled so different to what I was used to. Now I know how an original lavender oil scent should be instead of the commercial, chemically fragranced ones in the market. The lemon smells real. And most comforting because of its familiarity. I will have to get used to the other natural scents of the earth soon.

Perhaps my tips before deciding on a purchase for the first time are;

  1. Try to join one of those Free Oiling Classes held from time to time. Just so you could try the oils first and see if you like them. Takdelah mcm aku, beli pastu terkejut semua bau macam pekat dan tengik. In the beginninglah.. later on.. you find that you would prefer the natural scents more. Furthermore, by joining these classes, it saves you time from having to research and study the benefits of them on your own. Plus, you make new friends.
  2. Do not be greedy. Perhaps you might want to try the Introductory Kit first. But if you really want everything – then go ahead. jadilah tamak haloba macam I. 
  3. Or if you are adventurous, go for the other available collections such as the AromaTouch Technique Kit and Essential Collection Kit. These kits cost less than RM1K.
  4. Read blogs and reviews. Watch Youtube videos on doTERRA. Or any other brands of your choice.
  5. Know what you are looking for. So that the advocates can assist you to find what you need.

On top of this kit, I have purchased additional oils through the LRP programme. I even have favourite oils and blends too nowadays. I will write about that later.