What Gives Evergreens Their Fragrance
Evergreen trees, forest bathing, anti-inflammatories, fragrance and pest deterrence have one thing in common – terpenes.
The distinct fragrance of evergreens is thanks to the terpenes in the plant. It is often distilled and made into an essential oil pinene. The perceived health benefits are currently being researched with some positive findings.
Forest bathing is a long-time practice of walking mindfully through a forest. It was used to boost emotions and reduce stress. The emotional and mental benefits of this practice have helped it spread around the world. A recent study published in the Journal of Toxicological Research found forest bathing in a terpene-rich environment has human health benefits as well.
Terpene also provides plants with protection. When a pine is injured the terpene rich resin oozes out, helping repel insects and prevent fungal infections.
A bit more information: Researchers found terpene has potential anti-inflammatory, anti-tumorigenic and neuroprotective impacts on human health. And researchers in the United Kingdom are investigating ways to utilize terpenes as a petroleum substitute.