Avocado Oil



Avocado-bannerHappiness is a fresh, seasonal Avocado’, is the most stirring quote that made me rapt in the recent times. What is all in an Avocado that brings so much joy to humanity?

Avocado is nature’s souvenir that has been trusted and taken for treating cardiovascular problems, psoriasis, periodontal conditions, obesity, diabetes, wrinkles, halitosis, hair loss and numerous other medical conditions.

“Avocado is sweet and warm, excellent for the liver, high in vitamin E, is a skin moisturizer, and is good for weak tissues”, quotes Light Miller and Bryan Miller in their book ‘Ayurveda and Aromatherapy.

Called as Neerabijh (Sanskrit) or Makhanphal (Hindi) in Ayurveda, Avocado is employed in Ayurvedic healing as a skin tonic and for reducing bad cholesterol and chronic constipation; boosting libido, regulating insulin secretion, fighting against free radicals, enhancing ojas (strength, endurance and brilliance); and for treating alopecia, insomnia and joint pain.

Purchase Avocado Oil – Retail – 1 Quart – CLICK HERE

Purchase Avocado Oil – Wholesale – 1 Gallon – CLICK HERE

Remedial properties and chemical constituents of Avocado oil:

Avocado is nature’s source of power with vitamins, including vitamin A, C, E, B-6 and K1 along with riboflavin, folate, niacin, choline, dietary fiber, proteins, pantothenic acid, magnesium, potassium, zeaxanthin/lutein,  PFA (polyunsaturated fatty acid), (fatty acids namely Linoleic, Palmitoleic, Palmitic, Oleic, Stearic acid) MUFA(Monounsaturated fatty acid) and SFA (Saturated fatty acid).

Avocado oil contains remedial phytosterols like campesterol, beta-sitosterol and stigmasterol and bio-active phytochemicals including terpenoids, glutathione, carotenoids, phenols, tannins, lecithin, sterolin, D-mannoheptulose and persenone A and B.

Botanically called as Persea Americana, Avocado oil has anti-carcinogenic, demulcent, laxative, emollient, antiparasitic, carminative, astringent, regenerative, diuretic, cardiovascular, detoxifying, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, analgesic, anti-aging and anti-arthritic properties.

Historical uses and significance of Avocado oil:

Avocado is said to have been born in Mexico in the state of Puebla, though various substantiations from fossil testing states that it might have originated in California. It is recorded as one of the most primitive fruits consumed by the Mesoamerican populace, including the Maya, Olmec and the Mokaya of the Soconusco.

The ancient proof of Avocado’s presence in Mexico dates back to 10,000 BC. The leading producers of Avocado are Mexico with 500,000 tons per year, followed by California with 200,000 tons and Florida with 35,000 tons.

Avocados have been used by the Maya populace of Guatemala for diagnosing diarrhea, warding off intestinal worms and parasites and for enhancing the growth of healthy hair.

The Mexican iconography portrays Avocado and the Nahuatl term for avocado is ahuacatl, which means testicle in English. In accordance to the Mexican mythology, the fruit of avocado grants enormous energy.

Gutierrez and Villanueva, the popular Chroniclers of Spain denote Avocado as, “a fruit’s form contributes to its properties: the outer form is a result of inner forces. The avocado is shaped like a testicle, and it can therefore transfer that strength to whoever eats it.” Sounds great! Isn’t it???

It’s time to relate the effectiveness of Avocado as an immune stimulant and a sexual booster and one among the best natural alternative for delaying the aging process.

From the prehistoric times till today, Avocado and its cold-pressed magnificent oil is used in the manufacturing of soaps, shampoos, conditioners, serums, moisturizing creams, lotions, massage blends and an extensive array of cosmetic products.

Avocado is a familiar cooking oil with manifold benefits in it. It is a vital part of the popular Mexican dip, Guacamole and in corn tortillas. Salads, soups, desserts, savory dishes, snacks, sandwiches, hot dogs, hamburgers and a long-drawn-out list has Avocado as a main ingredient for its creamy taste and bulky benefits.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Avocado oil:

Avocado is an excellent remedial bliss in disguise, just like a Jackfruit that is rough on the outside and extremely sweet and smooth in the inside.

Ayurveda states that the fruit of Avocado and the oil extracted from its pulp is extremely beneficial in the treatment of vata dosha vitiations like scaly skin, psoriasis, constipation, rough and aged-skin, muscular stiffness, dry hair, joint pain, insomnia, improper blood circulation and wrinkles.

Avocado is also a promising remedy in the treatment of Pitta imbalances like poor metabolism, ulcer, tension, heartburn and inflammatory conditions.

Avocado is used in massage since the traditional times, especially for its enormous benefits to the skin.

Ayurveda denotes that all things in this universe is made up of five vital elements namely fire, earth, water, air and space and these are together known as Panchamahabhutas or the building blocks of life.

 “Earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind and intellect and also ego-sense; these are the eight-fold division of my nature. This is inferior. Know my mother nature, the higher, Oh Mighty-Armed, the life-element by which the universe is upheld”. (7:4-5)  – Bhagavad Gita

Earth consists of all the natural nutrients like vitamins, minerals (iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium) and phytochemicals within it. Every single plant that grows on earth observes these natural nutrients based upon its temperament and the environment in which it grows.

Since human body is also a combination of these 5 vital elements and it also contains such vital nutrients and these are responsible for the well-being of various parts of the body. Deficiency or excess of any of these natural nutrients leads to illness.

Thus treating such insufficiency with natural alternatives aids in diagnosing the illness initially and thus prevent it in the future as well.

For example, deficiency of vitamin A might end up in night blindness and other ocular effects, dry and scaly skin, respiratory infections, follicular thickening of the skin surface, low immunity and growth retardation problems in children.

Intake of natural foods that are rich in Vitamin A like carrots, sweet potato, lettuce, melon, tropical fruits and other green leafy vegetables can assist in treating the symptoms and diagnosing Vitamin A deficiency disorders.

Bright colored vegetables and fruits acquire vitamins from the earth and thus vitamin deficiencies are treated naturally by ingesting such food varieties.

In a much similar way, Avocado is rich in Vitamins C, E, B and K, potassium and monounsaturated fatty acids like oleic acid. Eating fresh Avocados and using Avocado oil for dermal use might assist in balancing such deficiencies in the system.

The most momentous Ayurvedic benefits of Avocado and its nourishing oil are as follows:

avocado-broucher1. Assists in the treatment of arthritis and rheumatism:

The presence of phytochemicals in Avocado is a healthy reason for its effectiveness in the treatment of osteoarthritis and other inflammatory conditions. It is for this reason, Avocado along with the blend of Soybean oil is recommended by Denmark as a food supplement for treating inflammation and influencing the repair and growth of cartilage.

France has determined this duo oil as prescription medicine. This is further substantiated by various research analyses published in the journal ‘Ugeschrift for laeger’ that have proved the usefulness of this blend in the healing of osteoarthritis in the knee and hip area.

Avocado oil inhibited a pro-inflammatory cytokine molecule” states the research report published in the 2006 Journal Periodontal Disease issue, where human bone cells and periodontal ligaments were studied, thus demonstrating that Avocado oil with its anti-inflammatory values aids in reducing inflammation and preventing certain other symptoms of periodontal disease like erosion of bone.

The anti-inflammatory attribute of Avocado oil is endorsed to its rich presence of phytonutrients like polyphenols and flavonoids.

A 2007 study ‘Metabolic Effects of Avocado/Soy Unsaponifiables on Articular Chondrocytes’ published in Evidence Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine and PubMed concludes “there is substantial evidence that ASU (Avocado/Soy Unsaponifiables) containing sterols are anti-inflammatory and provide protection against cartilage degeneration.”

It further adds “The major components of ASU by weight are the phytosterols beta-sitosterol, campesterol and stigmasterol. Phytosterols in general, and beta-sitosterol in particular, are now considered potent anti-inflammatory agents with antioxidant and analgesic activity.”

Massaging the painful parts with 2 ounce of Avocado oil blended with 1 ounce of Soybean oil can be of immense help in fighting against free radicals, reducing pain, inflammation, muscular stiffness and cartilage damages and in enhancing blood circulation in the affected area.

Pranayama or conscious breathing assists in the treatment of rheumatism, atherosclerosis, arthritis and other inflammatory conditions that mainly occur due to the stagnation of toxic remains in the system, where ama or toxic substances in the body are flushed out through slow and steady exhalation.

2. Supports healthy heart functions by condensing cholesterol levels:

The presence of beta-sitosterol makes Avocado and its oil as the friendliest oil for supporting the healthy functions of your heart. This is a type of phytosterol, which is structurally alike to body’s cholesterol.

They are often termed as ‘heart healthy nutrients’ because of their efficacy in converting low healthy fats into substances that will be comparatively less detrimental to the cells and are more exploitable.

Avocado with its phytosterol components does enormous goodness to the system as its anti-inflammatory properties due to phytosterol compounds help in reducing the risk of heart diseases mainly due to deposits of plaque or other mass substances.

Avocado and its oil help in trimming down excess inflammation and clog in the arteries and thwart the arterial walls from all kinds of damages and aid in maintaining normal levels of blood pressure.

Research study on the effects of increased ingestion of Avocado has witnessed considerable decrease of cholesterol levels in blood. This analysis sustained for about 7 days with diet rich in Avocados, where patients with slight hypercholesterolemia evidenced a 17 percent drop off in the levels of total serum cholesterols.

It also evidenced about 11 percent increase in HDL (good cholesterol) and 22 percent decrease in the levels of triglyceride and LDL (bad cholesterol), thus Avocados have also been proven to support healthier lipid profiles.

Eating Avocados in salad or as whole is a great way to relay its immense benefits to your system but Avocado oil is of great significance as it exists in a more concentrated form.

Blend 4 ounce of Avocado oil with 5 drops of Ginger oil and 5 drops of Spearmint oil and rejuvenate your system with a warm massage on your weekends. Indeed it is one among the comfy way to get rid of excess cholesterol and toxic remains in your system.

3. ‘Pick-me-up’ oil for most of your skin problems:

Pick up the most capacious oil of Avocado with your eyes closed just for the treatment of most of your skin conditions.

Avocado and its nourishing pulpy oil is known for repairing the damaged skin cells, supporting the growth of new cells, moisturizing the skin, augmenting the production of collagen and for treating wrinkles, fine lines, crow’s foot and certain other symptoms of aging.

The significant factors behind the skin nourishing attribute of Avocado oil is the presence of enormous nutrients including potassium, vitamins A, D and E (act as antioxidants), sterolin, lecithin, proteins and high presence of unsaturated fatty acids including omega-3 fatty acids.

Blend 2 ounce of Avocado oil with 10 drops of Evening Primrose oil and 10 drops of Jojoba oil. Relish your skin and your senses with this rich massage blend for about twice in a week. Leave it to rest for about half an hour. Follow this massage with a cool bath and feel the difference of your skin in less than 2 months.

The presence of sterolin, unsaturated fatty acids, proteins and antioxidant vitamins in Avocado oil assists deeper penetration into the skin surface and the bloodstream.

This in turn softens, moisturizes, repairs, rejuvenates and backs up healthy skin from within. Aging spots, psoriasis, eczema, dry skin, mature skin conditions and sun damage can be treated effectively with this wholesome oil.

A 12 week study listed in the Journal of Dermatology on the effectiveness of Avocado oil and Vitamin B12 on Psoriasis evidenced regular progress in the participants suffering from psoriasis.

4. Enhances digestive power and aids in weight management:

Avocado and its oil are known to increase the efficacy and the normal functioning of the digestive tract.

The oil of Avocado has soothing effects on the intestine, stomach and the digestive system as a whole. Being a mild and gentle oil, Avocado can assist in the treatment of ulcer, heartburn, improper metabolic functions and inflammation in the stomach and intestines.

Essential fatty acids (EFAs) like omega-3 fatty acid support in improving your metabolism and boost your appetite, thus granting you a feeling of fullness with its enormous nutrient content.

A balanced and healthy diet with regular exercise, healthy lifestyle practices, proper utilization of your physical and emotional energies, meditation and supporting techniques including massage with Ayurvedic oils like Avocado and detoxification for eliminating the toxic remains in your system, is more than enough to shed your extra pounds and live fit forever.

Massaging your abdomen with 10 drops of Avocado oil mixed with 1 drop of Lemon oil and 1 drop of Peppermint oil, especially before your meals is an excellent way to nurture your appetite and soothe the lining of the stomach and intestines.

A 2014 study on the ‘Effect of Dietary Intake of Avocado Oil and Olive Oil on Biochemical Markers of Liver Function in Sucrose-Fed Rats’ published in the BioMed Research International states that the intake of sucrose affects the total levels of bilirubin and proteins, which affects the function of liver and other metabolic mayhems.

Avocado oil administration revealed the beginning of a regeneration of liver function and Avocado oil exhibits effects similar to those of olive oil,” concludes this study.

5. Fights against cancerous attacks:

Avocado oil is powered with enormous antioxidants including carotenoids, polyphenols, tocopherols and proanthocyanidins. These antioxidants help in fighting against the free radicals responsible for cellular degeneration and the development of tumors in cancerous attacks.

The anti-cancer or anti-carcinogenic properties of Avocado is attributed to the presence of bioactive chemical components like terpenoids, carotenoids, D-mannoheptulose, phenols, persenone A and B, and glutathione, where glutathione is a tripeptide that consists of three amino acids namely glycine, glutamic acid and cysteine.

The National Cancer Institute found that Avocado’s glutathione levels of 8.4 mg per 30 g or 19 mg per one-half fruit is several fold higher than that of other fruits,” quotes the study Dietary glutathione intake and the risk of oral and pharyngeal cancer by the Emory University School of Public Health, GA.

A 2013 study on ‘Dietary avocado oil supplementation attenuates the alterations induced by type I diabetes and oxidative stress in electron transfer at the complex II-complex III segment of the electron transport chain in rat kidney mitochondria’ published in PubMed states “a protective effect of avocado oil against lipid peroxidation was observed consistently only in control mitochondria.”

This study concludes that the defensive outcome of Avocado oil is attributed to the antioxidant effects of carotenoids and glutathione that penetrates through the blood stream and reaches mitochondria (vital part of the cellular structure), where energy production and respiration happens.

Other benefits:

The other popular health benefits of Avocado oil are its effectiveness in the treatment of cracked heels, sunburn, insect stings, dandruff, wounds, loss of libido, blisters, bad breath, rashes, insomnia, periodontal diseases and more.

Disclaimer:

This piece of information is only for educational purposes and is not in any way meant to be used for diagnosis or as a substitute for any prescribed medications or the professional advice of your Doctor. We, at Essential Depot are not healthcare experts and this article is written only with the intention of sharing the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda.

Essential oils are meant for topical use only and not for ingestion, as pure and organic essential oils are the life force of plants and are highly concentrated substances. Seek the advice of your Ayurvedic expert or healthcare professional before choosing the appropriate essential oils for your state of health and unique individual constitution.

Thought for the day:

The Avocado is a food without rival among the fruits, the veritable fruit of paradise.

– David Fairchild

Suggested Reading:

  1. The Avocado: Botany, Production and Uses from Brand: CABI
  2. AVOCADO & HONEY FACIAL MASK – FOR NATURALLY BEAUTIFUL & HEALTHY SKIN (Essential Oil Spa) by KG Stiles
  3. Avocado Oil: The miracle health benefits, fat loss facts & kitchen tips (Avocado recipes, Avocado Oil for weight loss) by Margaret Horton
  4. Avocado 55 Success Secrets – 55 Most Asked Questions On Avocado – What You Need To Know by Teresa Kramer
  5. Absolutely Avocados by Gaby Dalkin

Reference Links:

  1. Avocado by Wikipedia
  2. Hass Avocado Composition and Potential Health Effects by Mark L. Dreher and Adrienne J. Davenport, published in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition and PubMed
  3. Domestication and Significance of Persea Americana, the Avocado, in Mesoamerica by Amanda J. Landon published in Digital Commons, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
  4. Metabolic Effects of Avocado/Soy Unsaponifiables on Articular Chondrocytes by Louis Lippiello, Joseph V. Nardo, Robert Harlan, and Tiffany Chiou, published in Evidence Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
  5. Effect of Dietary Intake of Avocado Oil and Olive Oil on Biochemical Markers of Liver Function in Sucrose-Fed Rats’ published in the BioMed Research International

Cucumber Oil



Will you be delighted or dreary if someone beckons you, “As Cool as a Cucumber”? I would rather recommend you to take pride when somebody calls you with that phrase because it simply means the attitude of being calm, composed and in absolute control of your emotions, even if a particular situation demands your aggressiveness and anger.

Cucumber-bannerThis is because Cucumber is one among the coolest fruits as scientific facts state “the inside temperature of a Cucumber can be up to 20 degrees cooler than the outside air”, besides growing well in tropical conditions.

Called as Kantakiphalam, Svetakarahatakam, Mutralam and Sudhavasah in Sanskrit, Cucumber is commonly called as Kheera in the traditional healing methodology.

Proudly representing India as its Motherland, Cucumber has been a part of the ancient Ayurvedic regimen in the treatment of rheumatic conditions, constipation, urinary disorders, cholera, wrinkles, dandruff, arthritis, vaginal infections, loss of appetite, duodenal ulcer, erectile dysfunctions, high cholesterol, eczema and hyperacidity.

Purchase Cucumber Oil – Retail – 4 oz – CLICK HERE

Purchase Cucumber Oil – Wholesale – CLICK HERE

Historical uses and importance of Cucumber and its essential oil:

Cucumber, as far as its history is known to the world is said to be a 3,000 years old fruit variety of the gourd family, cucurbitaceae. Besides its use in culinary, Cucumber has been preferred for raw eating, mainly for its cool, mild and enhancing flavor.

This cylindrical fruit is a powerhouse of various nutrients, for which it has been used in various civilizations across the world including the Rome, Israel, Greek, Egypt, The United Kingdom, France, China, and USA. The three famous varieties of this creeping vine are pickling, slicing and burpless cucumbers.

Cucumbers are absolutely edible and are found across the globe, all around the year but the high seasonal growth curtails to May – August. Pliny The Elder, the Roman philosopher quotes that Cucumber is the most favorite fruit of the Roman Emperor, Tiberius. His gardeners grew cucumbers using artificial methods, just to ensure that the king had cucumbers on his table every day.

It is being said that cucumbers were used in the primordial Roman province for treating more than 40 medical conditions, including scorpion stings, blurred vision, frigidity, high blood pressure and diabetes.

The Biblical reference of cucumber goes like this “We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely/the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlic.” After which the Israelites started cultivating cucumbers by themselves.

Certain sources state that cucumbers were brought to Haiti in 1494 by Christopher Columbus and were cultivated by the early Spanish settlers. South and North Dakota boasts for owning the finest cucumber farmers of Native America.

These fresh and refreshing fruits are often used in making salads (Indian raita), sauces, pickles, cold soups, sausages, chutneys, lamb chops, relishes and dressings. Cucumber and its essential oil are also used in the manufacturing of soaps, moisturizing lotions, anti-dandruff shampoos, conditioners and skin care creams, especially anti-aging products, for its nourishing properties.

Therapeutic properties and chemical constituents of Cucumber oil:

The oil of Cucumber contains about 14 to 20% of oleic acid, stearic acid, palmitic acid and 60 to 68% of omega-3-linoleic acid. It also contains potassium, silicon, cucurbitacins, sulphur and certain fatty acids like 9, 12, 15-Octadecatrienoic acid and 9, 12-Octadecadienoic acid.

Cucumber oil has antioxidant, diuretic, anti-rheumatic, anti-ulcer, relaxing, antidote, rejuvenating, anti-stress, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancerous, tonic, anti-dandruff, and laxative properties. It is rich in Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and C along with magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, zinc, iron and folic acid.

Next time, when you are exhausted and drained out, stop sliding on toxic caffeine drinks, instead grab a Cucumber and bank upon it for all your nutritional requisites.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Cucumber oil:

Ayurveda and Cucumber share the mutual joy of being indigenous to India, the land of rich cultural heritage. This oldest healing science on the globe states that everything on earth is made up of the five vital elements of nature, namely fire, water, earth, space and air.

Among which the living things on this planet acquires prana, the vital energy of life and ojas, and the nutritive quintessence from Mother Earth. While animal and human beings utilize prana and ojas for vitality and livelihood, plants grab ojas and prana from the ground and renovate them as food, herbal medications and essential oils for the absolute well-being of all other organisms.

The greatest news about the nobility of plants and trees are that they capture enormous life force and spiritual energy straight from the space by constantly looking up to the sky. Thus, any source of food or medicines acquired from plants instills the purest form of energy directly to our soul. It is because of this reason; we call invigorating plant fragrances (especially from essential oils, the life essence of plants) as soulful aromatic substances.

Cucumber is a bundle of joy and instant coolant that refreshes everyone even on a bright sunny day. It bears all the heat in the atmosphere, yet remaining absolutely cool in the inside makes it a special fruit with enormous healing attributes and nutritional values. India, being a country of tropical climatic conditions, rests upon Cucumber to quench its thirst and no Indian summer is complete without Cucumbers on the street.

Being a complete traditional remedy, Ayurveda regards health as a combination of physical, emotional and spiritual wellness and this ideology is based upon its philosophy of considering the human system as a place of worship or temple.

Ayurveda believes that the soul vested within each of us connects with Divinity and this connection or synchronization is the rationale behind hale and heartiness.

Ayurveda says that every individual is made up of three distinct doshas (vata, pitta and kapha) or biological energies. The most predominant among the three doshas acts as a deciding factor for your personality, character and behavioral traits.

Imbalance of any one of these doshic elements end up in health problems signaling that the body is out of balance with nature.

Imbalance of vata dosha can end up in memory loss, lack of concentration, fear, insomnia, dry skin, restlessness and constipation. Pitta unevenness might lead to disgust, ulcer, anger, heartburn, high blood pressure, jealousy, fever and skin ulcers.

Fluid retention, toxic remains, congestion, sluggishness, delayed menstruation, uterine fibroids, obesity and procrastination are the results of Kapha vitiation.

Cucumber oil has pacifying effects on pitta and kapha dosha. The cooling and refreshing properties of this oil can help in treating high blood pressure, heartburn, ulcer, fluid retention, skin eruptions, constipation and stress.

Cucumber is absolutely a treat for the four senses of healing, whereas its lucid green color soothes the sense of sight, it’s refreshing taste energizes the sense of taste, its cooling properties penetrate deeply into the skin to transfer its therapeutic values through the sense of touch, it’s refreshing aroma reaches the limbic system in the form of aromatic molecules to control emotions.

The other significant Ayurvedic health benefits of Cucumber oil are:

Cucumber-oil1. Augments skin health and supports radiating complexion:

Cucumber oil has stupendous revitalizing and nourishing properties that help in treating dull, damaged or mature skin conditions. The presence of linoleic acid and oleic acid in cucumber makes it an excellent aid for skin problems including acne, blackheads, sunburns, psoriasis, eczema and certain other inflammatory skin conditions.

The antioxidant properties of cucumber oil are attributed to the significant existence of tocopherol and tocotrienol substance along with the three lignans including secoisolariciresinol, lariciresinol and pinoresinol. These elements make Cucumber oil powerful in fighting against the free radicals responsible for aging symptoms, skin damages and several types of cancer, including ovarian cancer, prostate cancer, breast cancer and uterine cancer.

Massaging your skin with 10 drops of Cucumber oil blended with 2 drops of Orange oil and 4 ounce of coconut oil can help in retaining the natural moisture in the skin, repair dry and dull skin surface, treat eczema, psoriasis, rough, scaly and mature skin, reduce wrinkles, aging symptoms and skin eruptions.

A 2011 study on “Exploring Cucumber Extract For Skin Rejuvenation” by Naveed Akhtar, Arshad Mehmood, Barkat Ali Khan, Tariq Mahmood, Haji Muhammad Shoaib Khan and Tariq Saeed, Department of Pharmacy, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur and the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Pakistan, Published in the African Journal of Biotechnology, states that cucumber extract has been proven extremely beneficial for the skin.

These experts also say that Cucumber extracts have passed the maximum number of dermatological tests including skin melanin test, skin erythema test (safety of cosmetics), pH tests, skin moisture content test, skin sebum content test, and trans epidermal water loss test.

This study concludes stating that this was a preliminary initiative in exploring the unknown effects of Cucumber as a topical cream for skin rejuvenation.

It also states that cucumber extracts aid in reducing the melanin content (responsible for skin pigmentation and complexion); has anti-acne effects with its potent to decrease the content of skin sebum.

This study also declares that these analyses have proved to be capable in the context of prospective topical applications of cucumber extract (with its varied skin care properties), as cosmetics, skin-care items and in the manufacturing of pharmaceutical preparations.

You can also add 2 drops of Cucumber oil in a cup of cool water and wash your face for locking the moisture and fight against acne causing micro-organisms.

2. Combats dandruff and explores the natural shine of your locks:

Bouncy, strong, silky and dandruff-free lustrous locks are the dream of many women out there. Men are not an exception though, in longing for healthy hair that is free from hair loss, dandruff and other scalp conditions.

Cucumber is one among those natures’s richest owner of the minerals like silica and sulphur, of which sulphur is known for promoting hair growth and silica fortifies the hair follicles and protect from breakage and loss of hair. Silica is an essential element for supporting the health of connective tissues like skin, muscles, ligaments and bones.

The moisturizing properties of Cucumber oil helps in hydrating the scalp and aids in reducing dryness, itchy and flaky scales on the scalp surface and nourishes the scalp and roots of the hair from within.

Massaging your scalp with 5 ounce of Cucumber oil mixed with 5 drops of Rosemary oil and 5 drops of Brahmi oil and leaving it for 1 hour by wrapping a warm towel (helps the medicated blend to penetrate deeply into your scalp) can assist in reducing dandruff, replenishing the scalp, enhancing the luster of your hair and prevent excessive hair fall. You can also add 5 drops of Cucumber oil in your mild shampoo for fastening the natural moisture in your hair for a longer duration.

This blend can be applied by the swimmers before their swimming voyage in the chlorinated and chemical filled water. This helps in preventing the hair damage naturally.

3. Helps control high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes:

Certain studies witness that the presence of sterols in Cucumbers may help in reducing the high level of cholesterol, while the presence of fiber, magnesium and potassium assists in treating high blood pressure. Cucumber also stimulates the secretion of insulin hormones in the pancreas, thus assisting in the treatment of diabetes.

Eating fresh cucumber daily along with adding 5 drops of Cucumber oil in your liquid soap can help in vitalizing your cells and augment your energy levels.

4. Soothes the digestive system, thus helps in treating ulcers and halitosis:

Cucumber oil has the power to soothe and pacify pitta dosha. The excess of which would end up in overindulgence of digestive fire leading to ulcer, high blood pressure, acidity, heartburn, acne, negative emotions, feelings of rage, insomnia, acne and certain other skin eruptions.

Massaging your abdomen and chest with 10 drops of Cucumber oil blended with 2 drops of Peppermint oil can help in cooling the digestive system (intemperance of digestive fire) by soothing the lining of the stomach and intestines. Using 2 drops of Cucumber oil in warm gargle can assist in fighting against bad breath with the presence of phytochemicals.

5. Flushes out toxins and aids in treating rheumatic and inflammatory conditions:

Cucumber has enormous amount of ascorbic acid, contributing to its diuretic properties. This moisture-rich oil helps in replenishing the system with its anti-rheumatic, antioxidant and diuretic properties by flushing out the excess fluid deposits, toxic remains, salt, uric acid, free radicals and fat deposits in the system, which is often responsible for inflammatory conditions like gout, rheumatism, arthritis, swelling, redness, obesity and puffy eyes.

Massaging the affected parts with 5 ounce of Cucumber oil with 5 ounce of Sweet Almond oil can help in promoting frequent urination, thus eliminating toxic remains, free radicals, salt, fat deposits and uric acid, which helps in reducing swelling, skin irritations, muscular soreness, pain, redness and muscular stiffness associated with rheumatism and arthritis.

Pranayama or the art of balanced breathing can help highly in expelling ama or excess toxic substances in the system, where all these toxins are discharged through exhalation.

Inhaling the refreshing fragrance of Cucumber by adding 2 drops of this oil in your air freshener, especially during Pranayama and meditation can grant quicker relief by releasing your mind and body from toxic emotional blocks and harmful toxins in the system.

Other health benefits:

Cucumber is also helpful in treating vaginal itching, erectile dysfunctions, heart problems, renal calculi, cancer therapy, dark circles, urinary infections, cholera, and cellulites.

Disclaimer:

This piece of information is meant only for the purpose of information and is not recommended to treat or prevent any kind of medical conditions. It is not meant to replace any prescription medicines or the advice of a medical professional. We, the team of Essential Depot are not experts in Remedial practices or Traditional medicine and these facts are shared only for spreading the greatness of Ayurveda in treating mankind.

Essential oils are recommended only for topical applications and do dilute essential oils in suitable carrier oils before using it on the skin. Never ingest essential oils as absolutely pure and organic essential oils are highly concentrated substances and may cause allergic reactions, when used internally or on the skin without dilution.

Speak with your Ayurvedic expert or medical professional before choosing the right essential oils for your state of health and unique individual constitution. Performing a patch test on your skin before enjoying its complete benefits is an amicable advice.

Thought for the day:

Green is the prime color of the world, and that from which its loveliness arises.

– By Pedro Calderon de la Barca.

Suggested Reading:

  1. Cucumber Recipes by Jackie Swansen
  2. Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeial Plant Drugs: Expanded Therapeutics by C. P. Khare
  3. Dying to Look Good by Christine Hoza Farlow
  4. Asian Secrets of Health, Beauty and Relaxation by Sophie Benge, Luca Invernizzi Tettoni
  5. The Aromatherapy Encyclopedia: A Concise Guide to over 385 Plant Oils by Carol Schiller, David Schiller

Reference Links:

  1. Cucumber by Wikipedia
  2. Cucumis sativus (Cucumber) – Derived Ingredients as Used in Cosmetics, published in Cosmetic Ingredient Review
  3. The anti-aging effects of Cucumbers by Dr. David Jockers, published in Natural News
  4. Exploring Cucumber Extract For Skin Rejuvenation by Naveed Akhtar, Arshad Mehmood, Barkat Ali Khan, Tariq Mahmood, Haji Muhammad Shoaib Khan and Tariq Saeed, Department of Pharmacy, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur and the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Pakistan, Published in the African Journal of Biotechnology
  5. Phytochemical and therapeutic potential of cucumber by Mukherjee PK, Nema NK, Maity N, Sarkar BK, Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Jadavpur University, India, published in PubMed

Calendula Oil



Calendula-bannerIf and only if ‘the power of a flower can shower one forever’ with enormous benefits for the skin, then it cannot be anything less than Calendula, the one and only ‘on the dot’ flower that blooms probably on the first of the calendar month. Calendula and its oil has always been one among the best natural aid for treating numerous skin problems ranging from eczema to cracked foot.

While it looks resemble Marigold, this magical Pot Marigold called as Zergul in Hindi and Chin Chan Ts’ao in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) has been used in Ayurveda and other Complementary and Alternative Medicinal practices for treating wounds, insect bites, sunburns, vaginal infections, varicose veins, acne, warts, calluses, scabies, corns, gastritis and conjunctivitis.

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Historical uses and importance of Calendula oil:

Lovingly called as ‘pot marigold’, Calendula officinalis is an arm of the daisy family, Asteraceae. Indigenous to southwest Asia and West Europe including the Mediterranean and Macaronesia, Calendula is also called as Garden marigold and Scottish marigold.

There are many misunderstanding facts between other Calendula and Marigold varieties like marsh marigold, corn marigold and desert marigold that belong to the Tagetes genus and not the Calendula genus.

The word ‘Calendula’ is extracted from the Latin word ‘calendae’, which means ‘little calendar’, ‘little weather-glass’ or ‘little clock’, mainly due to its promptness in blossoming on the new moon or on the beginning of the calendar month.

The word ‘Marigold’ means ‘Virgin Mary’ and is trusted to possess divine healing properties and even today, these flowers are used to honor Mother Mary during numerous Catholic occasions. It is also used to decorate the deities during auspicious religious gatherings in the Hindu tradition in India.

The ancient Greeks and Romans wore garlands and crowns made with the dazzling golden color Calendula flowers and these beautiful blossoms were also used in religious ceremonies and other rituals. The traditional Egyptians believed that these sacred flowers had revitalizing attributes.

The bright golden color petals were also used in textile industry as a source of natural dye for fabrics and it was also used as a natural colorant in cheese and butter varieties. These flowers are a popular ingredient in many Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines along with stews and soup varieties in Germany, for which it is called as ‘Pot marigold’.

Calendula is still remembered for its cordial use during the World War I and the American Civil War as a natural healing agent for treating open wounds. Calendula dressing helped in healing wounds much quicker with its antiseptic and anti-hemorrhagic properties. These flowers were dabbed directly on wounds and cuts to promoter faster healing, control bleeding and to arrest infectious growths.

Being a vital part of the Traditional and alternative medicine, Calendula has been etched in certain oldest medical scripts for cleansing toxins in the gall bladder and liver and was prescribed to treat associated digestive disorders. Till today, the world sings the glory of Calendula tea, attributed to its appetizing taste and enormous healing benefits.

Pharmacological effects and chemical constituents of Calendula oil:

Calendula oil is said to possess antiseptic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, stimulant, detoxifying, carminative, anti-tumor, anti-hemorrhagic, antiviral, antifungal, anti-HIV, hepatoprotective and emmenagogue properties.

The major chemical constituents of Calendula oil are a-cadinol, limonene, a-cadinene, p-cymene, 1, 8-cineol along with other flavonoids, terpenoids, coumarins, flavonol glycosides, carotenoids, sesquiterpene glucoside, amino acids, triterpene oligoglycosides, saponins, and oleanane-type triterpene glycosides.

Ayurvedic health benefits of Calendula oil:

Ayurveda is not associated only with the word ‘remedy’ and much more than that, it encompasses diagnosis of the root cause of an illness, prevention of diseases, healthy aging and longevity to love and live with nature, naturally.

Loved as the most precious gift of the God of Creation, Brahma to the Lord of Medicine, Acharya Dhanvantari, Ayurveda is in healing and harmonizing mankind for more than 5,000 years, for which it is called as the Mother of all healing methodologies on earth. This includes Unani, Siddha, Homeopathy, Chiropractic, Aromatherapy, Allopathy, TCM or the Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture and Naturopathy.

Ayurveda is held high in India and all over the world for its holistic healing practices that defines health as the wellness of the mind, body and spirit together. Among the 4 sacred books of the Indian Hindu mythology (Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharvaveda), Ayurveda is a significant part of the Atharvaveda, where 114 verses talk about various health conditions, its symptoms, natural remedies and various Ayurvedic techniques for prevention and increased life span.

Dinacharya or the Ayurvedic routine recommends numerous ways for leading a hale, hearty and disciplined life. Human body is regarded as a temple, where the soul dwelling in is considered as a divine presence. This school of thought enables Ayurveda to strongly recommend practices for keeping the body, mind and spirit clean and cheerful.

Everything in this world is a part of nature and is made up of the fundamental elements, namely earth, water, fire, air and space. Every person is made up of a unique combination of these five elements, precisely called as doshas (vata, pitta and kapha). Vata (air + space), pitta (fire + water) and kapha (water + earth) make up an individual constitution, which is also called as Prakriti.

Each and every individual has a unique Prakriti just like the fingerprints, with a predominance of any of these three doshas. This doshic predominance determines the character, personality, behavioral patterns and emotional setup of an individual.

Perfect balance between doshas as per the law of nature indicates health and doshic imbalances due to sedentary lifestyle, change in food habits, weather fluctuations etc., lead to sickness. Ayurvedic remedies aim at treating the root cause of a health condition and prescribes unique medication for every person as per the Prakriti or the individual constitution.

The major Ayurvedic remedies include Ayurvedic essential oils, yoga, simple physical exercises, meditation, herbs, Pranayama (the art of balanced breathing), Abhyanga or the Ayurvedic massaging technique, Dinacharya or the Ayurvedic routine and Panchakarma (the Ayurvedic detoxification therapy).

Calendula oil is recommended for pacifying pitta and kapha doshas and for augmenting vata energy.

The most significant Ayurvedic health benefits of Calendula oil are:

Calendula-broucher1. Calendula for skin:

As we saw above, it’s historical significance during the World War I and the American Civil War as an excellent first aid agent in healing wounds, arresting bleeding and in treating inflammatory conditions is a noble proof for its brilliance in wound healing and is called as ropana in Ayurveda, means one which heals wounds.

A 2008 study on ‘Calendula officinalis and Wound Healing: A Systematic Review’ by Matthew J. Leach, PhD, BN (Hons), ND, RN, MATMS, published in WOUNDS, A compendium of clinical research and practice substantiates that the presence of triterpenoids like faradiol and the faradiol monoester and other components including flavonoids, saponins, polysaccharides and micronutrients contribute to its anti-inflammatory, anti-edematous, wound healing attributes and antioxidant properties.

The major skin conditions considered for this study includes foot ulcer, dermatitis, varicose ulcer, burns, injuries, cuts, abrasions, pressure ulcer, skin ulcer and other wounds. This study also explains that Calendula officinalis has “Anti-inflammatory activity – The acute inflammatory response during the early stages of injury generates factors that are essential for tissue growth and repair.

Antimicrobial activity -Wound healing can also be delayed when microorganisms are present in large enough numbers. Therefore, reducing the bacterial load of a wound may be necessary to facilitate wound healing, as well as reduce local inflammation and tissue destruction.

An ideal agent for the prevention and control of wound infection would therefore be one that directly destroys pathogens, while also stimulating immune activity. Calendula is one agent that possesses both of these properties.

Antioxidant effect – The production of free radicals at or around the wound bed may contribute to delays in wound healing through the destruction of lipids, proteins, collagen, proteoglycan, and hyaluronic acid.

Agents that demonstrate significant antioxidant activity may, therefore, preserve viable tissue and facilitate wound healing. Calendula demonstrates free radical scavenging activity against superoxide radicals and hydroxyl radicals and facilitates wound healing via an important antioxidant effect.

Wound healing activity – The most important clinical endpoint in wound management is wound closure or 100% epithelialization. Given that wound closure is critically important; it is argued that any agent demonstrating significant wound-healing activity should be seriously considered in conventional practice.

Calendula, for example, may facilitate wound healing by increasing wound angiogenesis and collagen, nucleoprotein, and glycoprotein metabolism, leading to improvements in both local circulation and granulation tissue formation.”

This study concludes stating “Calendula officinalis possesses a number of properties that are conducive to wound healing, especially in a number of acute and chronic wounds, particularly for its effect on inflammation, microbial load, and epithelialization.”

With its immunostimulant, astringent, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antiviral, anti-microbial, antiseptic and disinfectant properties, applying a blend of 5 drops of Calendula with 2 drops of Bay leaf oil in your mild skin care cream or with 10 drops of Coconut oil can help in healing bee stings, insect bites, sores, cuts, bruises, skin abrasions, swelling, burns, acne, scrapes, diaper rashes, athlete’s foot, conjunctivitis, dermatitis and other inflammatory skin conditions.

The most adorable quality of Calendula oil is that it helps in controlling the formation of scars and diminishes stretch marks with its ability to stimulate tissue repair generation and secretion of collagen that enhances the natural elasticity of skin cells.

You can also add few drops of Calendula oil in your skin care ointments, lotions and creams or in salves, facial steams, baths, washes, tinctures and Ayurvedic essential oils for nourishing, enriching and nurturing the texture and health of your skin.

2. Calendula for circulation and inflammation:

Calendula oil has diuretic and anti-inflammatory properties that assist in clearing away excess of kapha dosha responsible for fluid retention through the mutravahasrotas, means the urinary passages by promoting the frequency and quantity of urination. By this way, the excess water deposits, toxic remains, salt, uric acid and fat in the system are eliminated through urine.

The effectiveness of Calendula in enhancing the functions of rasa and rakta dhatus, which means the plasma and blood tissues contributes to its ability in augmenting proper blood circulation. This makes Calendula oil as a promising remedy in treating circulatory conditions like varicose veins, arthritis, gout and rheumatic conditions.

Thus massaging the affected or painful parts with 1 ounce of Calendula oil with 2 drops of Cassia oil and 2 drops of Black cumin oil can help in enhancing blood circulation, discarding toxic remains and fluid retention through urine and reduce pain and inflammation associated with rheumatism, varicose veins, gout and arthritis.

You can also add 2 drops of Calendula oil in warm water and use it is a gargle for alleviating sore throat, killing germs and microbes in the mouth causing bad breath, cavities, gingivitis and other gum problems.

3. Calendula for immunity:

Low immune power is the direct doorway for numerous microbes, pathogens and other micro-organisms causing various diseases and contagious medical conditions. The presence of calendulin, a yellow resin along with tannins and other chemical constituents of its volatile oil makes Calendula a promising medication for augmenting the rapid growth response of the human lymphocytes.

WBC or the white blood corpuscles are responsible for the body’s immune power or the potent to fight against pathogens, microbes or other harmful micro-organisms invading the healthy system. With its anti-microbial, antifungal, antiviral and antibacterial properties, Calendula oil strengthens the immune system by shielding against the attack of bacteria, virus, fungi, worms etc.

Calendula oil also helps in treating inflamed lymph glands and decrease lymphatic congestion. It also aids in purging away harmful toxic remains in the body through urine with its triterpenoid components responsible for its anti-inflammatory and diuretic properties.

Adding 5 drops of Calendula oil in bathing water every morning and 2 drops of Calendula oil added to your hankie or your pillow cover are the best ways to strengthen your immunity through the ‘Calendula power’.

4. Calendula for digestive disorders:

Calendula oil boasts its support to various digestive functions with its astringent, anti-inflammatory, anthelmintic and antimicrobial properties. The ability to pacify excess of pitta energy or digestive fire makes Calendula an excellent natural remedy for soothing the lining of the stomach, intestines and the gastrointestinal tract.

Massaging your abdomen with 10 drops of Calendula oil blended with 2 drops of Calamus oil and 4 ounce of Coconut oil can help in soothing the walls of the stomach and intestines, thus pacifying irritable bowel syndrome, peptic ulcer, gastritis and other inflammatory conditions of the gastrointestinal tract.

This medicated massage can also assist in stimulating the functions of the liver, the organ of detoxification, thus support in eliminating microbial infections, ama or toxic remains in the stomach, intestinal worms and other pathogenic foreign bodies in the gut, which may otherwise lead to dysentery, viral hepatitis, diarrhea and enteritis.

5. Calendula for reproductive functions:

Calendula is extremely beneficial in supporting the functions of the female reproductive problems including irregular menstruation, uterine fibroids, frigidity and ovarian cysts (polycystic ovarian syndrome).

For all these special benefits, Calendula blossoms are called in Ayurveda as Striroga, one which aids in gynaecological problems; Granthi, remedy for treating the complications of tumors, and Artavajanana for aiding trouble-free menstruation.

The oil of Calendula helps in clearing excess of kapha and pitta energies in the uterus, mainly because of its effectiveness on artavavahasrotas.

A gentle massage of the lower abdomen, back and thighs with 10 drops of Calendula oil and 1 drop of Cinnamon oil and 1 drop of Cassia oil can help in promoting blood circulation in the uterus, regularizing blocked or delayed menstruation, relieving dysmennorhea or menstrual pain.

You can also use this blend in bath, especially during your menstrual cycle and the times you’re sick with menopausal symptoms.

Calendula oil functions like a tonic to the uterine muscles, aiding in balancing the estrogen hormones that are responsible for PCOS and uterine fibroids. It is also trusted to treat cysts in the digestive passage and the breasts. Calendula infusions were used in folklore remedy for fostering uterine contractions and the discharge of placenta during childbirth.

Other health benefits:

The most celebrated herbalists, Gerard and Culpeper call Marigold as a “comforter of the heart and spirits”. Calendula is also recommended safe for diaper rashes, hemorrhoids, stomach upset, people undergoing radiation therapy, abdominal cramps, fistulas, sprains and eye inflammation.

Disclaimer:

This information is only for the use of education and is not intended to diagnose or prevent any health condition or to substitute any prescription drugs or professional medical advice. We, the Essential Depot team are not healthcare professionals and this content is written only in social interest of educating the public about the richness of Ayurvedic treatment, the most trusted traditional healing system.

Calendula oil is suggested only for the use of topical application and do not take it internally. Talk with your medical expert or your Ayurvedic practitioner before choosing the appropriate Ayurvedic oils for your Prakriti or unique individual constitution and medical condition and before using them on children, nursing women, pregnant ladies and on people who are undergoing other treatments (please check on drug interactions) and on those who are allergic to specific oils.

Thought for the day:

“The marigold goes to bed with the Sun
And with him rises, weeping.”
-Shakespeare

Suggested Reading:

  1. Calendula – Calendula Officinalis by Amanda Klenner
  2. Calendula Oil (How To Make Natural Skin Care Products Series Book 29) by Miriam Kinai
  3. Calendula by Marian Kim
  4. Calendula by Mindy Green
  5. Herbs for Healthy Aging: Natural Prescriptions for Vibrant Health by David Hoffmann FNIMH AHG

Reference Links:

  1. Calendula by Wikipedia
  2. Calendula by The University of Maryland Medical Center
  3. Calendula officinalis and Wound Healing: A Systematic Review by Matthew J. Leach, PhD, BN(Hons), ND, RN, MATMS, published in WOUNDS, a compendium of clinical research and practice
  4. Phytochemical Constituents and Pharmacological Activities of Calendula officinalis Linn(Asteraceae): A Review by BP. Muley, SS. Khadabadi and NB. Banarase, Govt. College of Pharmacy, Maharashtra, India, published in the Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research