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Can Smelling Essential Oils Help My Anosmia?

This is a question I get asked often…can smelling essential oils help my anosmia?  The short answer is yes, however there is a method to follow to retrain your nose.


What is anosmia? This is the loss absent of the ability to smell. Anosmia has been scientifically linked to a deficiency of zinc (source), an important trace mineral for immunity, absorption, growth and development. Other studies show that it can contribute to someone feeling more isolated, unhappy and have a lower quality of life.


What causes it? There are a number of reasons.

  • chronic exposure to environmental and cleaning chemicals
  • undergoing chemotherapy and radiation treatments
  • heavy metal toxicity
  • damaged limbic system
  • traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Zinc deficiency
  • Covid (known as the Covid nose)


How do I retain my sense of smell (and taste)?

Some anosmia imbalances can be corrected with daily scent inhalation sessions. To retrain the nose to smell again, sniff a couple of “culinary” essential oils (these entice taste buds which strengthen the olfaction process), six to ten times per nostril, twice daily. Rotate the scents smelled daily if possible, or at minimum, three to four times a week.

Culinary scents include (but not limited to) cinnamon, lemon, oregano, thyme, rosemary, nutmeg, cardamom and ginger. Science also shows essential oils containing vanillin, such as Balsam Peru, showed a higher recognition rate among anosmics (source). For some people, they can start smelling again within a couple months, for other with more severe trauma to their olfactory system, it may take much longer.


Since your sense of smell directly related with your ability to taste, you will use this method to strengthen both smell and taste senses.


Other helpful remedies:

  • heavy metal chelation
  • ion foot baths
  • N.A.E.T.
  • biofeedback
  • natural cleaning to reduce chemical exposure
  • wear a mask when around chemical atmosphere
  • eliminate synthetic fragrances
  • vitamin, mineral & essential fatty acid supplementation


Here is a sneak peak into a presentation I did for The Solve Network about the power of olfaction for mood, mindset & mental health.  It gives a great description of how your olfaction system works, culprits that can keep it from working and the impact hormone imbalances can have on your sense of smell. I answer these questions in this clip –

  • How does it work when someone can’t smell a scent? Do they still get benefits?
  • What are some causes for loss or decreases sense of smell?
  • How does chemical exposure affect your ability to smell?
  • How does chronic allergies affect your ability to smell?
  • Why do people have ah heightened sensitivity to smells?
  • Are there olfactory differences between women and men?
  • Can hormone changes affect your sense of smell?
  • How do smells affect animals?


Enjoy and let me know if you have any questions.


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