essential oils in bottlesIf Vick's "vaperu" were a superhero, Latinos would consider essential oils its sidekick. At least that's the way the women in my family see it. Growing up, I watched the women in my family expertly dole out unofficial prescriptions for essential oils, swearing up and down, left and right that these miracle aceites could cure whatever "vaperu" and ginger ale couldn't. Que, tienes un headache? There's an oil for that! PMS? Drink some ginger ale and rub this essential oil on yourself? Man troubles? Pues, use this stinky oil and he'll leave you the heck alone. And so it went. But do these oils actually work, and are the really safe? Well…


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Nowadays, the essential oil industry is booming, thanks in large part to several studies that pretty much back up what our abuelitas and their abuelitas before them have known for centuries: these slick healers are in fact the real deal. They're powerful and effective, and because they're derived from plants, everyone from spas to holistic healers to random friends peddling essential oils from home are touting the aceites as natural miracle cures! But what so many of us seem to be forgetting is that, sometimes, nature can be a witch! Even natural "remedies" can be dangerous and, at times, quite poisonous. Essential oils are no different. Plenty of them have the potential to do more harm than good, and a select few may even kill you!

So before you go slathering yourself with essential oils, take a quick look at the slideshow below to see just how much damage some of these "miracle cures" can actually do.

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