The mention of fir needle most likely conjures up scenes of a winter wonderland, but this tree and its essential oil are year-round sources of enjoyment as well as good health. Fir needle essential oil is extracted through a process of steam distillation from fir needles, which are the soft, flat, needle-like “leaves” of a fir tree. The needles house the majority of the active chemicals and important compounds.
The essential oil has a fresh, woody and earthy scent just like the tree itself. Most commonly, fir needle essential oil is used to fight sore throat and respiratory infections, fatigue, muscle aches and arthritis. Fir needle essential oil is also utilized in the manufacture of cosmetic products, perfumes, bath oils, air fresheners and incense.
Fir (Abies) trees are a genus of 48–56 species of symmetrical, evergreen, coniferous trees belonging to the pine family. The root system of the fir tree helps prevent soil erosion. Fir trees are found through much of North and Central America, Europe, Asia, and North Africa, most often growing in the mountain regions of these continents. Fir needle essential oil most often comes from the fir needles of the Balsam fir (Abies balsamea) or silver fir (Abies alba) tree species.
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