Do essential oils contain vitamins?

by Jade Shutes

Over this past weekend a student of ours wrote the following:

“my question is….a friend of mine (naturopathic doctor) has been approached a couple of times regarding citrus oils being a good source of vitamin C. This seemed like an easy question to handle when she approached me with this question. From my understanding, vitamin C is absorbed as a supplement in our gut (upper gi system) and I also believe that the tiny essential oil molecules aren’t made for such purposes (such as being a source of vitamin C for us). Furthermore, since non MD aromatherapist do not prescribe oral essential oils and essential oils can not tolerate extreme heat, I don’t see citrus essential oils being used for the purpose of providing vitmain C to humans.
Am I missing something? What is your take on this? I’m just curious.”

No. Essential oils do not contain vitamins. Why?

Vitamins are either fat/lipid soluble or water soluble. Since essential oils do not contain water or fat/lipid, they would not be able to ‘hold’ vitamins within them and so would not serve as necessary dietary vitamins.

Examples of water soluble vitamins include: Vitamin C, the B complex vitamins, niacin, and folic acid

Examples of fat soluble vitamins include: Vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin K

Great question!