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7 Benefits and Side Effects of Sea Buckthorn [Updated Jan/2023]

Sea buckthorn has been used for medicinal and nutritional purposes for a century for the treatment of radiation injury, trauma, cancer, cardiovascular disease, digestive tract disease and immune system diseas.

In empirical medicine, what are the benefits of sea buckthorn? Are there any side effects of sea buckthorn? See the text analysis for details.

What is sea buckthorn?

Seabuckthorn, belonging to the Elaeagnus family, is a hardy deciduous shrub native to Asia and Europe (up to 7 meters high). The fruit is orange pearl-like (tastes bitter and sour, and has a special fragrance. Similar to pineapple)

Seabuckthorn fruits, seeds and other parts are rich in more than one hundred kinds of nutrients, including vitamins, flavonoids, lycopene, carotenoids, plant sterols and a variety of fatty acids. They are rich in nutrition and medical value. They are also called miraculous fruits. Super food.

It is said that during the Yuan Dynasty, Genghis Khan often consumed sea-buckthorn fruits to strengthen his body and was one of the heroes in establishing a vast territory. Recently, the Soviet government often used it to reduce radiation damage to astronauts and adjust immunity.

What are the recommended benefits of sea buckthorn?

  1. Lower inflammation index C-reactive protein

C-reactive protein is the first acute-phase protein described, a very sensitive systemic marker of inflammation and tissue damage.

Related acute phase reactions include non-specific physiological and biochemical reactions of tissue damage, infection, inflammation and malignant tumors.

In healthy young people, the median concentration of C-reactive protein is 0.8 mg/l, but after acute stimulation, it may increase to more than 500 mg/l, an increase of up to hundreds of times.

A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial (90 days, 254 healthy volunteers) showed that oral sea buckthorn puree did not reduce infectious events in the common cold, digestive and urinary systems, but did reduce serum C-reactive protein concentrations. Note 1

*Conclusion: Oral sea-buckthorn fruit may help reduce the inflammation index C-reactive protein, but due to the small number of samples, more research is needed to support it.

  1. Beneficial for psoriasis

Psoriasis is a common chronic inflammatory skin disease. Its clinical manifestations are diverse and are the result of genetic, environmental and immune factors. About 0.5% to 1% of children And 2% to 3% of adults are affected.

Typical patients present with erythematous squamous papules and plaques, up to 20% or 30% are accompanied by comorbidities including arthritis, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression and cancer.

A single-blind, placebo-controlled study (8 weeks in 10 patients with psoriasis) showed that topical sea buckthorn extract helped improve psoriasis Area Severity Index and dermatology Life Quality Index scores. Note 2

*Conclusion: Topical topical sea buckthorn extract may be positively helpful for improving psoriasis, but it is limited by the small number of samples, and more research is needed to confirm it

  1. Beneficial atopic dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis is a skin disease related to allergies, which is related to a variety of factors, including genetic, immune, and environmental factors. It is estimated that the incidence of children is about 15-30%, while that of adults is about 2-10%.

The disease mainly manifests as chronic and recurring prurigo, which often co-occurs with asthma, allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis and food allergy.

A double-blind controlled study (4 months, 49 patients with atopic dermatitis) found that both sea buckthorn fruit oil and sea buckthorn seed oil helped improve the symptoms of atopic dermatitis, but the sample size was small and needed further validation. Note 1

  1. Beneficial for cardiovascular disease

Cardiovascular disease is a covering term. It is a general index of diseases with similar pathological symptoms, such as coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, peripheral artery disease, rheumatic and congenital heart disease, and venous thromboembolism.

The World Health Organization found that about 75% of early-onset cardiovascular diseases can be prevented by improving external factors, such as smoking, stress, obesity, impatient personality, high blood pressure, high blood lipids and inactivity.

A randomized, double-blind controlled study (30 days, 32 general patients and 74 patients with hypertension and hyperlipidemia) pointed out that oral sea buckthorn oil can help improve hypertension and hyperlipidemia compared with placebo, as well as increase antioxidant capacity. Note 2

*Conclusion: Seabuckthorn oil is rich in Omega-3-6-9 and antioxidants, which may help reduce cardiovascular risk factors, but more empirical confirmation is needed

  1. Beneficial for vaginal atrophy

Vaginal atrophy is one of the most frequently complained symptoms of menopausal women, second only to hot flashes. According to statistics, about 75% of menopausal women will occur. The main cause of female hormone decline.

Although hormone replacement therapy can effectively improve the symptoms of vaginal atrophy, there are doubts about increasing the risk of breast cancer and endometrial cancer.

A double-blind controlled study (3 months, 116 patients with vaginitis associated with menopause) found that sea buckthorn oil improved vaginal epithelial cell integrity and vaginal health index, and may be an alternative option for those who cannot use estrogen therapy. Note 2

  1. Good for dry eye

Dry eye is a multifactorial disease caused by abnormal tears and the surface of the eyeball. It exhibits a variety of symptoms, including pain, dryness, gritty sensation, itching, redness, foreign body sensation, light sensitivity or fatigue.

This disease is mainly prevalent in the middle-aged and elderly, but due to the excessive use of mobile phones and computers, the incidence of young people has soared, and almost everyone has a prize.

A double-blind controlled study (3 months, 100 dry eye patients) found that sea buckthorn oil helped reduce tear film osmolarity and reduced eye redness and burning. Note 3

*Tear osmotic pressure is one of the criteria for diagnosing dry eye. Too high a value will activate the inflammation pathway and cause damage to the eyeball epithelial cells.

  1. Beneficial for liver fibrosis

Liver fibrosis is caused by a variety of liver diseases, mainly related to chronic viral infections, alcohol consumption and non-alcoholic fatty liver.

This fibrosis process is mainly caused by too long and too long wound healing reaction (ie chronic inflammation), which often leads to excessive accumulation of extracellular matrix proteins and the formation of fibrous scars and nodules.

The long-term fibrosis of liver cells may develop into liver cirrhosis, end-stage liver disease or liver cancer.

A randomized controlled study (6 months, 50 patients with stage I and II cirrhosis) sea buckthorn extract significantly reduced the values of laminin, hyaluronic acid, type III and IV collagen, and total bile acids (indicating beneficial disease progression). Note 4

In addition, the liver function index AST and ALT normalized faster in the sea buckthorn group, indicating that sea buckthorn may become one of the options for the prevention and treatment of liver fibrosis in the future.

What are the sea buckthorn oil side effects?

Sea buckthorn fruit and sea buckthorn oil are generally considered safe foods for people in good health, but side effects of sea buckthorn or side effects of sea buckthorn oil have been reported, including diarrhea, abdominal cramps and other gastrointestinal problems.

Safety precautions (7 contraindications to use)

  1. Do not use by pregnant women, nursing mothers, and children under 12 years old (due to unknown safety)
  2. Do not use for patients with abnormal liver and kidney intestinal function (due to unknown related safety)
  3. After ingestion, it may cause dark yellow or reddish urine, which is usually harmless
  4. The safety of long-term use of sea buckthorn oil is unknown, so it is recommended not to use it for more than 3 months
  5. Patients with abnormal coagulation function should not eat, and should not take with drugs with anticoagulant effect (because sea buckthorn may have anticoagulant effect)
  6. Stop using 2 weeks before surgery (because sea buckthorn may have anticoagulant effect)
  7. Sea buckthorn fruit may have a blood pressure-lowering effect, so please be careful if you have low blood pressure or take antihypertensive drugs
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