Formed over 45 million years ago, Baltic amber is an organic substance, a “fossil resin” produced by pine trees which grew in Northern Europe - from southern regions of the present day Scandinavia and nearby regions of the bed of the Baltic Sea. The climate became warmer and trees started to exude big amounts of resin. Scientists say that amber is a fossil pine resin from this region that has achieved a stable state through oxidation.
From a chemical point of view, amber consists of 79 percent carbon, 10.5 percent hydrogen and 10.5 percent oxygen. Studies with a mass spectrometer have shown that amber contains over 40 compounds as well as succinic acids and additive salts of potassium, sodium and iron. Amber extends over three groups of compounds: volatile terpenes and sesquiterpenes, soluble, organic acids and also non-soluble polyether. It ranges from bright yellow to dark yellow or brownish-orange, depending on its age and where it is found, in seldom cases it is either red or blue. Only a small quantity of amber is clear, because of the effects of the sun, most of it is opaque. It takes an electrical charge when it is rubbed and develops a pleasant resinous smell when it is burnt.
This unique gem actually has electrical properties, and can pick up small items like straw, as well as creating sparks when rubbed against silk, wool, or fur. It was these properties of “electrum” that William Gilbert had in mind in the 1600’s when he described the effects of magnets using a new word he coined: electric. The term electron, created in 1891, was also inspired by amber’s properties.
For many centuries since time began, people have used nature’s bounty for traditional medicine. What is sometimes referred to as alternative medicine is actually a mainstay medicine in many parts of the world today. As more and more people are reaching out for natural healing and pain relief, there is one remedy that is prevalent today and has stood the test of time -- Natural Baltic Amber. And with good reason. Natural Baltic Amber has unique properties unlike any other amber in the world. Famous Hippocrates (460-377 BC), father of medicine, in his works described medicinal properties and methods of application of Baltic amber that were later used by scientists until the Middle Ages. In ancient Rome Baltic amber was used as medicine and as a protection against different diseases. Calistratus famous physician of those times, wrote that amber protects from madness, powder of amber mixed with honey cures throat, ear and eye diseases and taken with water cures stomach illnesses. Pliny the Younger noted that Roman peasant women wore amber medallions not only as adornments, but also as a remedy for "swollen glands and sore throat and palate." Persian scientist Ibn Sina (Avicenna) called amber remedy for many diseases. There was a belief in eastern countries that amber smoke strengthens human spirit and gives courage. In Asian countries "amber syrup", a mixture of succinic acid and opium, was used as a tranquilizer and antispasmodic.
In present day times, tens of effective medicines containing succinic acid have been manufactured and patented, especially in the Russia. Of particular value are pharmaceuticals preventing the aging of human cells, which use succinic acid as an inhibitor (an agent slowing down or totally stopping the loss of) of potassim ions and an antioxidant. Therefore, the acid may be called a scientifically described, modern elixir of youth. Succinic acid is also a valuable product for sportspeople. It is not a stimulant improving one's effort on a single event basis, but rather a stimulator of a balanced, comprehensive development. Dr. Veniamin Khazanov of the RAS' Institute of Pharmacology at the Tomsk Scientific Center wrote: "For aged people, succinic acid has proved to be indispensable. It is capable of restoring the energy balance at the cellular level, which is often upset as the years go by, and helps the patient regain his youthful energy." He says also that it has proven the equal or better of many commercial drugs and is significantly less expensive. Further, research at the University of Hamburg, Germany confirms the safe and positive effects of succinic and fumaric acids in cellular metabolism.
Amber oil is another universal medicine recognized as very effective, especially for all rheumatic diseases. Giacomo Fantuzzi so reported from his 1652 journey:
...A very valuable, strong, acrid and thick oil is made from amber. The oil has a thousand beneficial properties as specified in the formula I got in Gdansk, where the process has been developed to perfection, and the oil from white amber is believed to be the best and the most expensive...”
Amber oil permeates the skin very fast, penetrating deep into the tissue and exerting a positive influence, leading to the introduction of the majority of negative ions. It improves blood circulation and eases muscle pains.
We are surrounded by all sorts of electrical devices: radios, television sets, microwave ovens, hair-driers, shavers, computers and mobile phones, which affect our organism. Modern research proves that we may protect ourselves against their negative influence by making friends with Baltic amber wearing amber jewellery, necklaces, bracelets, brooches, rings or pendants, or carrying a raw amber figurine or nugget in our pocket. Warming up, amber changes ionization, positively influencing our frame of mind and rebuilding the disturbed electrostatic field. We will be happy and full of energy once again, and we will attract luck.
One of the most valued derivatives of pure, natural baltic amber, amber oil is a prized possession of those who know where they can find it. Actually, it is liquid amber.
Europeans long ago learned that amber oil rubbed into the skin did many fabulous things. One of which was to regenerate the skin. It is one of the earliest known anti aging treatments. When smeared with amber oil immediately after a blow, one reduces the occurrence of subdermic blood clots - bruises
Amber oil is produced by dry distilling natural baltic amber, which amber, among all the ambers of the world, has the highest concentration of succinic acid. It is the succinic acid that imparts the "magical powers" to amber. Amber oil is made from pure, natural baltic amber by heating the amber in a closed container. (The container must be free of oxygen so that the amber does not burn.) The process is called dry distillation. It is a very easy process and if often done on the stove in cottages in Eastern Europe along the Baltic Coast where it is easy to come by amber.
When heated this way, the amber breaks down into amber acid, amber oil and amber rosin. Each is valuable in its own right. In fact, the value of the sum of the three parts is much higher than the raw amber that was used to create them.
Amber oil from Natural Baltic Amber is believed to have strong therapeutic properties