Sea Buckthorn is not a well known plant and yet it is receiving attention from scientists all round the world and has even been on television!
To see what is causing the flurry and research we only need to glance at the amount of vitamin C and E and carotenoids – all impressively high and then we see the oil content and see that it is the richest source of omega 7 oil in the world…so this is a seriously healthy fruit and one that deserves all the research and publicity it can get.
What is Sea Buckthorn?
Sea Buckthorn is a thorny bush that grows right across Europe, Russia and China – although most of the plants are grown in China. It is salt tolerant and has a shallow root system that acts to bind and hold soil together.
And it produces bright orange berries rich in vitamin C and flavonoids and rich in the very unusual Omega 7 oil.
Harvesting the berries for this oil is difficult due to the spikes although it’s well worth it when you read “Sea buckthorn berries are among the most nutritious and vitamin-rich fruits known.”
Sea Buckthorn Oil
Squeeze Olives and you get Olive oil; squeeze the berries of Sea Buckthorn and you get the Sea Buckthorn Omega 7 oil!
Omega 7? What’s That?
A few years ago when I first started seeing advertising for Omega 7 Sea Buckthorn I dismissed it as empty publicity. I thought I knew it all when it came to Omega oils…
Omega 3 Oils from Flax oil (best source) – essential for counteracting inflammation which is at the heart of all chronic disease.
Omega 6 Oils from safflower oil and corn oil – essential for powering the ability to generate inflammation which is an essential part of the Immune system.
Omega 7 Oil
Omega 7? Surely you’re having a laugh? Or just scamming people? Omega 3 and Omega 6 oils are called Essential Fatty Acids because they really are essential for our health but Omega 7 seemed like a dubious sales pitch to me!
Far far away from Western society, and well over a thousand years ago Sea Buckthorn was being used as an anti-aging medicine. The berries are nutrient rich and were applied directly to the skin of the face and hands to counter wrinkles and other visible signs of aging.
Traditionally used in Traditional Chinese and Oriental medicine for skin disease such as eczema and Psoriasis as well as digestive disorders it seems that with so many possible therapeutic effects sea buckthorn will find its place in Western Herbalism and Naturopathic Medicine as it becomes more familiar.
At present I cannot recommend it for any specific treatment – especially to be taken orally. I would not object to topical use – directly to the skin.
I’d like to see more published results on oral treatments before using it myself.Update – I have seen more and become satisfied and I am happy to take it. I’ll add another post on this soon.
However I came across a research paper with huge possibilities and I am going to leave you with a quote.
It is of a research project in 2007 done in Quebec on various berries and here is an extract from the “Results” section of the research…
” The growth of various cancer cell lines, including those of stomach, prostate, intestine and breast, was strongly inhibited by raspberry, black currant, white currant, gooseberry, velvet leaf blueberry, low-bush blueberry, sea buckthorn and cranberry juice, but not (or only slightly) by strawberry, high-bush blueberry, serviceberry, red currant, or blackberry juice “
” CONCLUSION: These results illustrate that berry juices have striking differences in their potential chemo preventive activity and that the inclusion of a variety of berries in the diet might be useful for preventing the development of tumours.”
In short, sea buckthorn is a superfood with some documented powers and a long track record. However we do have many superfoods with much accepted research and evidence. By all means investigate Sea Buckthorn and it’s benefits but take full advantage of other berries some of which you can grow in your own garden.
Government of British Columbia: Mostly from the Agricultural point of view, this will download into your browser or PDF reader…https://www.agf.gov.bc.ca/speccrop/publications/documents/seabuckthorn_may2001.pdf
Sea Buckthorn in the past
Modern research on Various Berries including Sea Buckthorn berries