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10 Reasons to Start Using Copaiba Essential Oil


The vast jungles of the Amazon rainforest house some of the greatest diversity on the planet including: the 3000 species of fish, 1300 species of birds, 430 species of amphibians, 380 species of reptiles, and the astonishing 40,000 species of plants. Because of the incredibly abundant life it is no wonder that some of the best plant-based remedies originate in this mysterious part of the world. Among the canopy of the forest, the copaiba (pronounced co-pie-EE-ba) tree, is one of the most exciting plants to rear its towering head, growing to around 100 feet tall.

Used for generations by the indigenous tribes, it has only recently caught the attention of western medical scientists; however, it is quickly becoming one of the greatest medicinal discoveries of the plant world. Here are some of the reasons to start using copaiba essential oil:

Urinary Tract Infections: Traditional spiritual and physical healers of the region have used the resin from the copaiba tree for disorders of the urinary tract (including bladder and kidney infections).

Anti-Inflammatory for Skin Conditions: The indigenous people also used copaiba as a topical anti-inflammatory agent for a wide variety of skin disorders, including: psoriasis and eczema.

Sore Throats and Tonsillitis: Copaiba is also traditionally used as a gargle for sore throats and tonsillitis. Having tried using the oil during an episode of strep throat I can attest that it took the pain and swelling of my sore throat right down.

Pain of All Kinds: Perhaps copaiba is best known for its ability to alleviate pain and inflammation. An animal study published in the Journal of Cellular Biochemistry found that copaiba demonstrated potent anti-inflammatory activity throughout the body and also reduced the number of free radicals that tend to be involved in the degradation of joints in arthritic conditions. It can be applied directly to the skin in painful areas; however, you should dilute it in a carrier oil if you have sensitive skin. Products suitable for ingestion can also be used internally for pain. Be sure the product you select indicates suitability for internal use since most are not.

Parkinson’s Disease: Because of copaiba’s interaction with the body’s endocannabinoid system, it holds promise in the treatment of brain diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. It appears to work against Parkinson’s disease through its ability to protect the nervous system from damage. A preliminary study published in the medical journal Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy found that copaiba’s effects on the CB-2 receptors might help protect brain and nervous system cells involved with dopamine production and regulation.

Alzheimer’s Disease: In a study exploring the effects of copaiba on brain cells and Alzheimer’s disease, researcher found that copaiba provided marked antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, nerve- and brain-cell protecting abilities. The researchers also found that copaiba prevented the destruction of a brain hormone known as acetylcholine, a deficiency of which has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

Potential Against Cancer: While the research into the effects of copaiba on cancer is in its early stages, it is showing great promise against a wide variety of cancers, including: skin, lung, lymph, breast, and colon cancers, as well as melanoma. It may be beneficial for other types of cancer but more studies are needed. In a study published in the European Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, researchers found that copaiba stops skin cancer cells from proliferating.

The Appearance of Aging Skin: Other research found that copaiba stimulated collagen in the skin and promoted new skin formation, which may be beneficial for chronic wounds, burns, or the appearance of aging skin. .

Anti-Bacterial Benefits: Copaiba is also used for its anti-infectious properties, which are starting to be proven by scientific research. According to a study published in the journal Phytotherapy Research, copaiba demonstrates notable antibacterial properties. The study assessed the effectiveness of various copaiba species and found that they all had significant antibacterial activity, particularly against bacteria found in the mouth and which contribute to dental and gum conditions. The scientists concluded that “there is great potential against oral bacteria.”

Arthritis and Joint Pain in Animals: According to Animal Wellness Magazine, copaiba can be helpful in the treatment of arthritis and joint pain in animals. Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Melissa Shelton recommends one drop twice daily (added to food) per 50 pounds of animal. In other words, a 50-pound dog could have one drop two times daily, added to its food. Of course, be sure to choose a product suitable for internal use. A drop or two of the oil can also be applied topically, diluted in a small amount of carrier oil for application.

How to Use Copaiba Essential Oil

There are many ways to use copaiba essential oil, including diffusing it or mixing it with water and spraying into the air for the purpose of inhalation; applying topically to skin, painful areas, or skin cancer; or ingesting it for pain or as part of a treatment for conditions like cancer or brain disease. It can also be mixed with honey to soothe sore throats and coughs. However, most of the oils on the market are not suitable for ingestion. So, use only oils that clearly indicate their suitability for internal use or which indicate “dose” on the bottle. I have tried different brands and have obtained the best results with doTERRA’s copaiba essential oil. Additionally, you should work with a qualified natural health expert before using any essential oils internally or if you’re dealing with a serious health issue like cancer.

Make sure you select high quality, pure, undiluted essential oils. While you may end up diluting the oils yourself, most of the oils on the market are diluted with less-than-desirable carrier oils. High quality oils cost more than the cheap varieties on the market but are worth the increased price. Many cheap oils are adulterated with solvents used during the extraction process or toxic pesticides used in the growing process of the herbs from which the oils are extracted.

After diluting one to two drops in a small amount of carrier oil, always conduct a 48-hour test patch on a small inconspicuous part of your skin to determine whether you have any sensitivity to the essential oils. Discontinue use if you experience any skin sensitivity. Use essential oils with caution and the advice of a qualified natural health practitioner during pregnancy or in the treatment of any health condition.

Selecting the Right Oil

Some companies may cut down the copaiba trees to extract the oil, thereby potentially destroying the delicate rainforest. Choose a product in which the company taps the trees similarly to the way that maple trees are tapped, and which are not over-tapped to ensure the life of the trees. This is one of the reasons I prefer doTERRA's copaiba essential oil. Theirs is sustainably harvested by tapping the trees, ensuring the health and longevity of the trees and providing the indigenous people of the rainforest with fair trade earnings and a means to stave off unethical corporations attempting to cut down the rainforest.


Food Fix: The Most Powerful Healing Foods and How to Use Them to Overcome DiseaseDr. Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM, RNCP, ROHP, is an international best-selling & 21-time published book author, and a celebrity nutritionist. Check out her latest e-book: FOOD FIX: The Most Powerful Healing Foods and How to Use Them to Overcome Disease, available now for immediate download. Her work has been featured in Woman's World, First for Women, Huffington Post, Reader's Digest, WebMD,, and Thrive Global. Learn more about her work at    

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