Borage seed oil is an extract that is made from the seeds of the plant named Borago officinalis. This seed oil is most popular because of its high content of GLA or Gamma linoleic acid that is a fatty acid that can help in reducing inflammation associated with several diseases. In this article we will take a look at what is borage seed oil good for.
Borage Seed Oil: An Overview
Borage seed oil is derived from borage plant. The leaves, flowers, and the oil from the borage seeds are used in preparing several medicines. Borage seed oil is known to treat various skin disorders like eczema, itchy red rashes on skin, and on scalp, and also a type of skin condition known as neurodermatitis. Moreover, borage seed oil is also used for treating conditions like rheumatoid arthritis or RA, stress, diabetes, PMS, ADHD, acute respiratory distress syndrome, pain, swelling, inflammation, asthma, and also in preventing heart stroke and heart diseases. Moreover, borage seed oil is also used for treating a hormonal problem known as adrenal insufficiency, for increasing the urine flow, for preventing inflammation in the lungs, and as a sedative and also for promoting sweating. This oil is also used for increasing milk production and treating colds and bronchitis.
Borage is used in foods and consumed in salads and soups. Borage is also used in various skin care products.
The GLA or gamma linoleic acid present in borage seed oil seems to have an anti-inflammatory effects. Borage flower might even contain an antioxidant effects.
What Is Borage Seed Oil Good For?
It Is Anti-Inflammatory:
One study from 2014 that compared borage oil, fish oil and also a combination of these both, found that consuming 1.8 grams of the borage seed oil or 2.1 grams of fish oil every day helped in reducing the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis or RA in 74 participants who were continuously observed for 18 months.(1)
The study concluded that borage seed oil and fish oil might be able to replace the NSAIDs or the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for some people, by which they can avoid some of the side effects of these NSAIDs.
The same study even noted that patients might even reduce the amount of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs that they are taking as well.
It Is Good For Its Linolenic Acid:
Borage seed oil is known to have a high GLA or the gamma linolenic acid content. This GLA is a type of fatty acid that our body converts to PGE1 or Prostaglandin E1 and it is even present in other seeds and nuts too and also in various vegetable oils.
GLA acts like a hormone in our body, thus helping in reducing inflammation associated with skin diseases and various cardiovascular problems.
Borage Seed Oil Is Good For Skin:
Borage seed oil is good for skin. The oil is known to be effective in reducing symptoms of several skin problems.
One review of studies using borage seed oil topically and other essential oils containing GLA, found that borage seed oil has both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects that might be helpful for people suffering from atopic dermatitis.(2)
In one more research of 2013 on the effect of borage seed oil taking orally, researchers have concluded that the oil showed no benefits for patients of eczema than the placebo group, based on an analysis of around 19 related studies.(3)
So, clinical research shows more promise with topical use of borage seed oil for skin diseases as compared with the oral version.
Borage Seed Oil Is Good For Growth And Development Of Premature Infants:
Infant formula that was supplemented with fatty acids from borage seed oils and fish oils seems to improve the growth and development of the nervous system in case of infants who were born early, especially the boys.
It Is Good For The Functioning Of The Lungs In Critically Ill Patients:
It is known that borage seed oil is good for improving the lung functions in case of critically ill patients. There is some evidence that when borage seed oil is taken orally along with EPA or Eicosapentaenoic acid; it might reduce the number of days spent in the ICU and also the length of time a breathing machine is required by patients with ARDS or Acute respiratory distress syndrome.
Some Other Ways Borage Seed Oil Is Good For:
Possible Side Effects:
Though borage seed oil is good for many conditions, it might cause some possible side effects like skin irritation, skin rash, hives, swelling, sudden fatigue, breathing difficulties, headache, bloating, burping, indigestion, gas, vomiting, nausea, and dizziness.
So you need to talk to your doctor before consuming borage seed oil. You also need to note not to take this oil in excess. Talk about the appropriate dosage with your doctor.
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