The Truth about Food Grade vs Therapeutic Grade Essential Oil

food grade essential oil

As founders of a health and wellness company, we often get asked about the differences between food grade and therapeutic grade essential oils. With so much confusion and misinformation out there, we decided to set the record straight.

Define Food Grade Essential Oils

First, let’s define the terms. Food grade essential oils are approved by the FDA as safe for human consumption. They are used primarily in cooking and baking, but can also be added to drinks and dietary supplements. Examples of food grade essential oils include peppermint, lemon, and cinnamon. They are labeled as β€œGRAS” (Generally Recognized as Safe) and can be found in the food and spice aisles of many grocery stores.

Define Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils

Therapeutic grade essential oils, on the other hand, are not recognized by the FDA. The term is not regulated, so there is no standardized definition or grading system. Generally, it is used by essential oil brands to indicate a higher quality and purity of their products. Therapeutic grade oils are typically used for aromatherapy or topical applications, such as massage or skincare. There is no real meaning in theraputic grade, this also includes perfume grade.

So, which one should you choose? It depends on your intended use. If you want to add essential oils to your food or drinks, then go for food grade oils. However, be sure to only use high quality, pure oils from reputable brands like “its”.

Not all essential oils labeled as “therapeutic grade” are safe for internal use. Some should never be ingested, even if labeled as food grade. Always read the label and do your research before internal use, as safe dosages are small and often require mixing with other ingredients or carrier oils.

Another important factor to consider is the quality and purity of the oils. Regardless of grade, it’s crucial to choose oils that are 100% pure and free from additives or synthetic ingredients. Look for brands that provide third-party testing and have a transparent sourcing and production process.


In summary, the difference between food grade and therapeutic grade essential oils means when given the option for food grade choose that and therapeutic grade is as good as cosmetic/perfume grade.

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