Arnold S. Leonard, M.D., Ph.D., Mark Mueller and Charles E. Crutchfield III, M.D
Why are oils extracted at cold temperature from fruit, herb and spice seeds amazingly good for your skin and superior ingredients for a great variety personal care products?
The short answer is; seeds are the antioxidant and nutrient powerhouses of the plant. They are the mother lode of natural protection mechanisms for the regenerative but fragile plant embryo. Oils extracted at cold temperature contain all the vital nutrients, essential fatty acids, trace minerals like zinc, magnesium and calcium necessary to sustain the plant germ in its first days of life. The plant chemical protection mechanisms of seeds are complex, diverse and biodynamic, involving literally dozens, even hundreds of different plant chemicals that protect the fragile embryo from oxidation, damage from UV light, and the onslaught of a myriad of environmental microorganisms such as fungi and molds. These natural protection mechanisms are so effective the embryo in some seeds have been known to be viable for hundreds of years.
A company on the forefront of the exciting frontier of extracting novel fruit, herb and spice seed oils is Botanic Oil Innovations, Inc.* Using its’ proprietary NatureFRESH-Cold Press process, it produces nutrient dense, biodiverse, super potent antioxidant novel fruit, herb and spice seed oils for the dermatology and personal care products industry. Botanic Oil Innovations produces these novel oils from such plants as cranberry, blueberry, raspberry, blackberry, grape, black cumin, milk thistle and pomegranate to mention a few.
Oils extracted from seed using this cold process are raw foods, unadulterated by heat, solvents or additives. The resulting oils have a rich and diverse range of protective phytochemicals that function to protect the seed from oxidation, ultra violet light and to ward off attack from microorganisms. Often these novel fruit, herb and spice seed oils contain the full range of eight different forms of natural vitamin E in the form of tocopherols and tocotrienols, not just the alpha tocopherol (given a bad name by a number of periodicals). And they contain a great variety of other antioxidants, like the carotinoids carotein, lutein and zeaxanthan, cryptozanthin and literally hundreds of other plant chemicals like quinones and polyphenolics.
Is there any wonder then that these same protection mechanisms for the plant embryo aren’t also good for your body’s natural protective covering, the largest organ of your body, your skin? Benefits from these novel oils include protection against skin bacteria, protection from UV light, improved antioxidant protection, accelerated healing, increased collagen expression, and increased elasticity and more pliable skin. Botanic Oil Innovations, in conjunction with other Universities, has conducted extensive laboratory testing demonstrating the functional protective values. Here are some things they are researching and finding:
The novel botanical oils are natural emollients. They prevent dryness and protect the skin, acting as a barrier and healing agent, as well as a soothing and softening agent of the skin. They reducing roughness, cracking and irritation and may even assist with retarding fine wrinkles. While water is the best emollient, it evaporates too quickly to be effective unless it is used in conjunction with oils in an emulsion. Natural botanical oil emollients nourish the skin with concentrated nutrients including which may prove beneficial in treating inflammatory conditions of the skin such as acne, psoriasis, eczema and rosacea. The antioxidant properties may prove to have some of the most effective rejuvenating properties of any know topical skin treatment to date. (Charles E. Crutchfield III, MD, Clinical Professor Dermatology, et. al., Univ. of Minnesota)
Cox-2 inhibition activity of many NatureFRESH-Cold press fruit and herb oils according to laboratory assays conducted by Liangli Yu, PhD at the University of Maryland, are many times greater than aspirin. Cox-2 is an enzyme linked to inflammation and inflammation is associated with many skin disorders ranging from sunburn to roseacea, psoriasis, acne and dandruff.
Antioxidant Protection to the Power of 10
The NatureFRESH-Cold press process preserves the natural antioxidants in the botanical seed oils resulting in superior free radical quenching. Many of the botanical oils contain a broad mixture of Vitamin E isomers, often acting synergistically with other antioxidants that result in a total antioxidant level ten times, twenty times and even forty times or more than the fruit overall. The cranberry and raspberry fruit seed oils for example have rich concentrations of the tocotrienol form of Vitamin E. The tocotrienol forms of vitamin E are just now being scientifically understood. They are the less saturated form of Vitamin E, enabling them to move around more freely and efficiently in cell membranes where they intercept and neutralize free radicals than can the tocopherols. Research by noted scientists at the University of California discovered the tocotrienol form of Vitamin E can be 40-60 times more effective in neutralizing free radicals than alpha tocopherol.
Anti Microbial Activity
Many skin disorders are known to result from or are exacerbated by bacteria and fungi living on the surface of the skin. The antimicrobial activity of super potent antioxidant botanical oils is very strong enabling them to act as a bactericide against a broad range of microorganisms and even pathogens such as E. coli and listeria. Potent antioxidant botanical oils have been shown in research at the University of Maryland to not only inhibit growth of a broad range of microorganisms but also to reduce them to a zero survival rate.
There’s an old saying, the best approach is to mimic nature as nature knows best. So, when it comes to protection for the skin, NatureFRESH-Cold Press oils seem to work well. The NatureFRESH Cold press oils have the right combinations and right mixtures of antioxidants, essential fatty acids and nutrients to protect and nourish the skin in multiple ways. Hopefully, more skin care specialists will realize the potential of these natural ingredients and use them in their daily patient treatment programs.