May 5, 2016

Bergamot Oil

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What other names is Bergamot known by?

Aceite de Bergamota, Bergamot, Bergamot Orange, Bergamota, Bergamotier, Bergamoto, Bergamotte, Bergamotto Bigarade Orange, Citrus Bergamia, Citrus aurantium var. bergamia, Huile de Bergamote, Oleum Bergamotte.

What is Bergamot?

Bergamot is a plant that produces a type of citrus fruit. Oil taken from the peel of the fruit is used to make medicine.

Some people treat a skin condition called psoriasis by applying bergamot oil directly to the skin and then shining long-wave ultraviolet (UV) light on the affected area. Bergamot oil is also applied to the skin (used topically) for a tumor caused by a fungal infection (mycosis fungoides) and for pigment loss (vitiligo). It is also used as an insecticide to protect the body against lice and other parasites.

Bergamot oil is sometimes inhaled (used as aromatherapy) to reduce anxiety during radiation treatment.

In foods, bergamot oil is widely used as a citrus flavoring agent, especially in gelatins and puddings.

In manufacturing, bergamot oil is used in perfumes, creams, lotions, soaps, and suntan oils.

Possibly Ineffective for...

  • Mental alertness. Using bergamot oil as aromatherapy does not seem to improve mental alertness. In fact, it might decrease mental alertness in heathy adults due to its relaxing effects.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Anxiety during radiation treatment. Developing evidence suggests that inhaling bergamot oil as aromatherapy does not help reduce anxiety in people receiving radiation treatment.
  • Psoriasis, when used along with UV light. Early research suggests that applying bergamot oil to the skin along with UV light is not more effective than UV light alone for reducing plaque psoriasis.
  • Treating a tumor under the skin due to a fungal infection (mycosis fungoides), when used along with ultra-violet (UV) light.
  • Protecting the body against lice and other parasites.
  • Loss of the color pigment on the skin (vitiligo).
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of bergamot oil for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).


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