March 16 2021
Hippophae rhamnoides or commonly called Sea buckthorn is a plant having small, round, yellowish-orange berries. Fun fact, the name Hippophae has been derived from ‘hippo’ or horse as in ancient times, the branches were fed to horses to improve the texture of the coat. These are also known as sandthorn, sallowthorn, and seaberry and are native to China, Russia, and Northern Europe. The shrub grows at a high altitude between 2650 and 3700 m in these regions. The berries are edible and have been used for centuries in traditional cuisines. Apart from acting as a food source, the berries are of medicinal value and are used in various skin care products.
Sea buckthorn berries are sour. You can mix the juice with other fruit juices like apple or grape juice to reduce the sourness and improve its taste.
When pressing the berries to extract the juice, the juice is observed to separate into three distinct layers- thick top cream, a middle layer rich in polyunsaturated fats, and the bottommost layer containing sediments. The upper two layers are used in the preparation of topical creams and liniments while the lowermost layer is utilized in making jams and jellies.
You can even freeze the puree extracted for up to 2 years in an airtight container.
These small yellow berries are enriched with fatty acids and antioxidants, particularly vitamin A, vitamin B1, B2, B6, vitamin C and Vitamin E (α-Tocopherol). Due to the very same fact, it is in demand in skin care products. Vitamin C is known to protect the skin collagen from damage, giving you supple, wrinkle-free skin. Vitamin A makes your eyesight sharper while vitamin E smooths out all the age lines on the skin. These berries store the lipids in the mesocarp or fruit pulp and the seeds. The concentration varies. These lipids are extracted in the form of oil. The oils are utilized extensively in cosmetics and nutritional supplements.
Benefits of Topical Sea Buckthorn Oil
When applied directly to the skin for seven weeks, a combination of water and sea buckthorn oil promoted skin elasticity. This study was carried out involving 11 young men.
Animal studies also show that topical application of sea buckthorn oil stimulates regeneration of the skin cells, reduces inflammation following UV exposure, heal wounds quickly, and conclusively protects the skin against sun damage. It also helps prevent acne breakout and gives you smooth and blemish-free, glowing skin. You can directly apply a few drops daily to achieve its beauty-enhancing effects. This effect is thought to be due to the omega-7 fat content.
Benefits of Oral intake of Sea Buckthorn Oil include
- It boosts your Immune System: Due to the high flavonoid content in sea buckthorn berries, it increases our resistance to illnesses. Test-tube studies have shown that it prevented the growth of bacteria, E. coli, and the propagation of viruses like HIV, herpes, and influenza. Thus, the antioxidants and flavonoids in sea buckthorn oil protect the body against infections.
- It improves liver function: In one study, Sea buckthorn oil intake resulted in lowered blood cholesterol and triglyceride content and improved liver enzyme levels. In another study, participants with liver cirrhosis were given 15g of buckthorn extract thrice per day for 180 days. This significantly improved blood markers levels.
- It promotes Heart Function: It has been proven that antioxidants reduce the incidence the blood clots and associated risk of blood pressure levels. In one small study, 5g daily intake of sea buckthorn oil lowered blood clot markers in the blood. In another study, 0.75ml of sea buckthorn oil reduced elevated blood pressure levels and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) content in the blood. However, results in healthy volunteers were less remarkable.
- Sea buckthorn oil may help to prevent Diabetes: Constant high blood sugar levels may pave your path to getting type-2 diabetes. Insulin is a hormone secreted by the pancreas that reduces the circulating blood sugar levels by promoting its uptake by cells. Animal studies show that sea buckthorn oil reduces blood glucose levels by increasing insulin secretion and increasing insulin sensitivity. In another small study in humans, it reduced the elevated blood glucose levels immediately after a meal rich with carbohydrates.
- Sea Buckthorn is useful in treating stomach ulcers in animal models.
- Some postmenopausal women may experience such as vaginal itching and drying to lower estrogen levels. Sea buckthorn oil may reduce such symptoms.
- Eye redness and burning can be relieved with sea buckthorn oil.
- Joint Inflammation is a common symptom rheumatoid arthritis. Sea buckthorn oil may also relieve this inflammation.
While we have talked about maintaining physiological balance, Sea buckthorn oil’s role doesn’t stop here. It has been reported in animal models that sea buckthorn oil may have an anti-depressant impact. In a nutshell, sea buckthorn not only takes care of your physical health but also your mental health.
If we talk about the safety of consuming this oil, it is safe to use in healthy individuals. However, there are a few precautions that you must keep in mind. Like every food source, there is a likelihood of it interacting with other medications. If you are on a medication like aspirin that prevents the clotting of blood, sea buckthorn oil might exacerbate the problem of bleeding and easy bruising. If you have constant low blood pressure, sea buckthorn oil might lower the blood pressure even further. It’s important to consult a doctor if you’re on any kind of therapy.
If you’re good to go for a sea buckthorn supplement, you can check out Alvizia’s Buckthrol supplement containing 500mg of sea buckthorn oil in soft gel capsules!