The human body needs essential fatty acids for normal growth, maintenance of cell membranes, to ensure the immune system is working well and to balance the body's hormone levels to a normal level.

Essential Fatty Acids are the "good fats" all over the news these days, and a very hot research topic. More is known about them every week as more studies come forward.

 
 
 
 

Constituents of Sea Buckthorn

Seed oil Fatty acid Values

(Sakti Jana1, William R. Schroeder2 and Branka Barl1, FINAL REPORT Sea buckthorn cultivar and orchard development in Saskatchewan July.12.2002)

Over the past 20 years,  there has been a dramatic increase in the scientific scrutiny of and public interest in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and their impact on personal health.  Scientists have revealed that a 1:1 ratio of these two essential omega oils is optimal for proper function in the human body. These two essential fatty acids occur naturally in seabuckthorn in a 1:1 ratio!

Many of today's chronic diseases are related to the impact of an imbalance in the omega-6 and omega-3-based eicosanoids. Having higher levels of omega-6s tends to increase the risk of many inflammatory and auto-immune diseases—such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, psoriasis, ulcerative colitis, osteoporosis, gum disease, asthma, and Alzheimer's disease—or make these problems harder to treat.Omega 3 - Omega 6 balance.


Essential Fatty Acids

Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are necessary fats that humans cannot synthesize, and must be obtained through diet. EFAs are long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids derived from linolenic, linoleic, and oleic acids. There are two families of EFAs: Omega-3 and Omega-6. Omega-9 is necessary yet "non-essential" because the body can manufacture a modest amount on its own, provided essential EFAs are present. The number following "Omega-" represents the position of the first double bond, counting from the terminal methyl group on the molecule. Omega-3 fatty acids are derived from Linolenic Acid, Omega-6 from Linoleic Acid, and Omega-9 from Oleic Acid.

Essential fatty acids (EFA's) are vital for the synthesis of fat stores in the body, they play an important role in the regulation of cholesterol levels, and are precursors of prostaglandins, which are hormone-like substances that produce various metabolic effects in the body, such as inflammation, pain and swelling as well as controlling blood pressure, heart, kidneys and digestive system. Prostaglandins are important for allergic reactions, blood clothing and making other hormones.

Essential fatty acids help the skin to stay youthful and supple and are also required to utilise the energy contained in the fat stores in the body.

 

When "Fatty" is Good: Omega-3 Oils and Fatty Acids

There are two varieties of "essential" fatty acids (omega 3 and 6). They are called essential because, like vitamins, the body needs them and cannot make them. Thus, we need to be sure we get enough from our diets or from supplementation.

Omega-3 (A-Linolenic Acid) fatty acids are found predominantly in cold-water fish and a few vegetable/ berry oils (flaxseed, canola and sea buckthorn). Other food sources of omega-3s include whole grains, legumes, nuts, and green leafy vegetables.

While fats in general have multiple uses in the body, their most significant roles involve the brain, cell membranes, and a host of hormone-like substances that act like thermostats in the body: either raising or lowering a variety of metabolic functions in order to maintain health.

In addition to their value for cell membranes, omega-3 fatty acids play an important role in regulating the body's metabolic processes. Eicosanoids are hormone-like compounds that act like thermostats throughout the body, either raising or lowering a wide range of bodily activities.


Omega 6 (Linoleic Acid)

Together, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids play a crucial role in brain function as well as normal growth and development. EFAs belong to the class of fatty acids called polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). They are generally necessary for stimulating skin and hair growth, maintaining bone health, regulating metabolism, and maintaining reproductive capability.

Deficiencies in EFAs can lead to reduced growth, a scaly rash called dermatitis, infertility, and lack of ability to fight infection and heal wounds. Lack of omega-6 fatty acids, however, is extremely rare in diets of those living in certain Western countries.

In fact, North American and European diets tend to have too much omega-6, particularly in relation to omega-3 fatty acids. This imbalance contributes to long-term diseases such as heart disease, cancer, asthma, arthritis, and depression. For optimum health and disease prevention, the balance should consist of one to four times more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids. A typical American diet, however, tends to contain 11 to 30 times more omega-6 than omega-3 fatty acids.

 

Omega 7 (Palmitoleic Acid)

Scientists believe our most delicate body tissues, like the skin and the mucus membranes that line the digestive and urogenital tracts, have the greatest affinity for Omega 7 fatty acids. Environmental stressors (such as sunlight and pollution), improper foods, and even normal aging can challenge those sensitive membranes, and Omega 7 fatty acids are now being hailed as nourishment that may protect, replenish, moisturize, and restore.

The fruit oil contains a very high content (35 %) of Omega 7 (palmitoleic acid), that is rare in natural form. It also has a very high index of absorbance to UVB light (between 280nm and 320nm).

 

 

Omega 9 (Oleic Acid)

Omega 9 is a monounsaturated fatty acid present in all animal and vegetable fats. Oleic acid is the most common Omega 9 fatty acid. This fatty acid is essential, but it is not considered an EFA (essential fatty acid) because the human body can manufacture a limited amount of it if other EFA’s are present.

Omega 9, also known as Oleic Acid, is associated with reduced atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), reduced insulin resistance and, thus, improved glucose (blood sugar) maintenance, improved immune system function, and has recently been implicated in possible protective effects from some cancers.

 

Fatty acids - What good are they? Where do they come from and what does the body do with them?

Fatty acids are necessary chemicals in the body. They are found in more complex chemicals such as triglycerides, phospholipids, sphingolipids, glycolipids, and others. Triglycerides, are the main chemicals in "fat"; they are primarily a storage form. Phospholipids are part of the membranes that surround all cells in the body and the smaller structures inside the cells. Sphingolipids and glycolipids are complex chemicals that are found mainly in brain and nerve cells; gangliosides and myelin are in this category. The bottom line is that fatty acids are absolutely necessary for many normal body functions. We couldn't live without them.

Fatty acids are found in the foods we eat. They are in particularly high amounts in fatty or greasy foods, fried foods, and oils. They are also present in large amounts in nuts and seeds. Meat, even lean cuts, have a lot of fatty acid in them. On the other hand, vegetables, fruits, and starchy foods (e.g. pasta or breads) are relatively low in fatty acids.

What happens to dietary fatty acids? Fatty acids and other nutrients in food reach the stomach where the process of digestion begins. In this process, foods are broken down into their different components, such as carbohydrates (sugars and starches), proteins, and lipids (fatty acids and cholesterol). These components of food are then absorbed by the cells that line the intestines. Nutrients pass through the intestinal cells and into small blood vessels. These blood vessels go directly to the liver, which can be thought of as a "processing plant" for nutrients. In the liver cells, nutrients are metabolized; this means that they are either broken down to produce heat or energy, or are converted to other chemicals that the body needs. Excess nutrients can be converted to a storage form such as glycogen (for sugars) or triglycerides (for fatty acids).

Very often the body has too much fatty acid around, either because we ate too much or because the body produced too much internally. We need to get rid of the excess fatty acid. Fatty acids are then broken down or "oxidized" to produce energy or heat for the body. In fact, fatty acids are the main source of fuel for the body during starvation. There is a delicate balance between having enough fatty acid around and having too much. The body normally has finely tuned mechanisms for maintaining this balance. When the balance is shifted, disease often results. (Very long-chain fatty acids and adrenoleukodystrophy Stephan Kemp, Ph.D. and Paul Watkins, M.D., Ph.D.)

 

Anti-inflammatory:

Clinic Observation: Seabuckthorn Seed Oil Treatment of Reflex Esophagitis

Forty patients were diagnosed Esophgitis by pathology laboratory. Thirty-four were males and six were females. 3-5 ml (0.96mg/ml) of seabuckthorn seed oil were given to patients 3 times per day. The average treatment lasted 14 months. The effective rate was 97%. Seabuckthorn seed oil protected the mucous of stomach and inhibited the growth of H. pylori.

Li Changshun, Chang Xinmin, Wang Fenrong, et al. from First Teaching Hospital of Xian Medical University. A Clinic Observation: Seabuckthorn Seed Oil Treatment of Reflex Esophagitis. HIPPOPHAE . 1996, Vol.9 (4): 40-41.

 

Medical Applications of Seabuckthorn

Seabuckthorn oil’s anti-inflammatory properties were widely recognized. It was used to treat Laryngopharyngitis, stomach ulcer, etc. In 1959, a Russia doctor reported that after 34 to 47 days of treatment of seabuckthorn oil, most symptoms caused by stomach ulcer were relieved.

A rat study in Russia showed seabuckthorn oil reduced stomach ulcer induced by Resurpine…

Seabuckthorn oil were found to inhibit variety bacteria, including Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, Typhoid bacillus, E.coli, and Bacillus dysenteriae…

A Chinese doctor, Dr. Gao used seabuckthorn seed oil to treat 100 cases of burn patients. He applied the seed oil locally and the average recovery was about one week.

In 1952, the Ministry of Public Health of Soviet Union approved the topical application of seabuckthorn oil as a alternative for burn treatment.

Zhou Pengyuan, Jiang li. A Clinic Observation: Seabuckthorn Seed Oil Treatment of Reflex Esophagitis. HIPPOPHAE . 1995, Vol.8 (1): 20-25.

 

Radiation Inflammation Effects from Seabuckthorn Seed Oil and Fruit Oil.

Radiation inflammation on mice were induced in the study. Then researchers administered seabuckthorn seed oil and seabuckthorn fruit juice to mice. The result demonstrated that seabuckthorn oil increase the survival rate by 30-35%.

Cheng Tijuan, Zhu Yuzhen, et al. Anti Radiation Inflammation Effects from Seabuckthorn Seed Oil and Fruit Oil. HIPPHAE. 1995, Vol.8(4): 32-35.

 

.A Report on 32 Cases of Burn Patients Treated by Seabuckthorn Seed Oil

Thirty two cases of burn patients were treated only by seabuckthorn seed oil. Doctors applied sterilized oil on the wounds. The average recover was about 5-7 weeks. Read more

Zhao Yisheng from Airforce Xian Hospital . A Report on 32 Cases of Burn Patients Treated by Seabuckthorn Seed Oil. HIPPOHAE. 1994, Vol. 7 (3): 36-37.

 

 

Improving Cholesterol Profile:

Medical Application of Seabuckthorn Oil

A clinical study in Huaxi Medical University reported seabuckthorn oil improved lipid profile for hyperlipemia patients. Seabuckthorn oil were given to patients for 1-3 months at the dosage of 12ml/day. The decrease of cholesterol and triglyceride were observed.

Flavonoid isolated from seabuckthorn was studied by Dr. Zhang Peiyun, et al. Total cholesterol reduced from 238 ± 79mg% to 180 ± 36mg% in 77 patients and HDL increase to 86.8 ± 28mg% from 56.5 ± 13mg% in 30 cases (P<0.001). Triglyceride decreased to 125 ± 99mg% from 200 ± 183mg% in 52 patients (P<0.001).

Russia doctors gave patients 15g/day of seabuckthorn oil. The reduction of cholesterol and triglyceride were observed in most patients after 30 days.

Zhou Pengyuan, Jiang li. HIPPOPHAE. 1995, Vol.8 (1): 20-25.

 

Anti-mutation and immune system studies:

Observation: Anti-mutation and Anti immune-suppresser Properties from Seabuckthorn Seed Oil.

The micronucleus test of mice showed that seabuckthorn seed oil reduced micronucleus induced by Cyclophosphane.

Ren Lifeng, Yang Jianping, et al. Observation: Anti-mutation and Anti immune-suppresser Properties from Seabuckthorn Seed Oil. HIPPOPHAE. 1992, Vol.5.

 

Anti-cancer Studies from Russia .

One study in Russia showed that extract from seabuckthorn had anti-cancer properties. Three hundred eighty mice (hermaphroditism) and ninety normal mice with induced Lewis lung cancer were studied. The result demonstrated that seabuckthorn strengthened immune system, increase the activity of NK cells and interleukin I.

Zhang Zhemin, Qiu Deming. Anti-cancer Studies from Russia. HIPPOPHAE. 1995, Vol.8 (4):38-40.

 

Toxicity studies:

Toxicity Studies on Seabuckthorn Seed Oil

LD50 of Force feeding seabuckthorn seed oil to mice was >60mg/kg. A long term toxicity study showed no abnormal in blood, kidney and liver function and no pathological change in heart, lung, liver, kidney, adrenal gland and sex organs after 3 months of force feeding at dosage of 2ml/kg, 5ml/kg and 10ml/kg.

Che Xiping, Guan Xiaohong, et al. Toxicity Studies on Seabuckthorn Seed Oil. HIPPOPHAE. 1996, Vol.9 (1): 38-41.

Shannxi Pharmacological Research Institute carried a long term toxicity study on rats. Rats were forced feeding 18g/kg ( almost 20 times of clinical dosage ) of seabuckthorn oil and no toxicity effect were found.

Xu Mingyu, Sun Xiaoxuan, Tong Wenxin. Medical Research and Development on Seabuckthorn. HIPPOPHAE. 1994, Vol.7 (1): 32-39.
 

Fatty acids shown to improve lipids and lower the risk of heart disease: EPA/DHA & GLA from Omega-3 Fish/Marine Oils, Pine seed oil, carotenoids-rich Siberian Sea Buckthorn oil, and olive oil.

Omega-3 fatty acids have been associated with numerous health benefits, from brain development and preventing memory loss to suppressing tumors and cutting heart disease. EPA/DHA: Decrease triglycerides, VLDL cholesterol, and raise HDL modestly. Has additive effect with statins — no interference. Researchers found that omega-3 oils stop the build up of fatty deposits in the arteries, which is why oily fish and fish oils protect against heart disease and stroke.


The overall cardiovascular beneficial effects of EPA/DHA omega-3 fatty acids include anti-inflammatory, anti-thrombotic, lipidmodulatory and immunomodulatory actions due somewhat to its role in eicosanoid physiology and biochemistry. EPA and DHA have both similar and dissimilar physiologic roles. EPA appears to be more important in those roles where the eicosanoids are involved, whereas DHA seems to play its most important roles in the membranes of CNS cells. EPA is the precursor to series-3 prostaglandins (PG), the series-5 leukotrienes (LT) and the series-3 thromboxanes (TX). Specifically, EPA is the precursor of TXA3, and LTB5, eicosanoids, which reduce platelet aggregation and increase vasodilation. This could account in part for those fish oil effects that may lead to a reduced clotting activity and decreased blood pressure.


The lack of Omega-3 in our diets may be one of the primary reasons behind many of the diseases Americans face, and our shorter lifespan in relation to many other "first world" countries such as Japan or Greece. Overall, fish consumption seems to be beneficial, and a systematic review of 11 prospective cohort studies concluded that fish intake notably reduced mortality due to coronary heart disease in populations at increased risk.(Marckmann P, Gronbaek M. Fish consumption and coronary heart disease mortality. A systematic review of
prospective cohort studies. Eur J Clin Nutr 1999;53: 585-90.)

The outcome of a trial, conducted by researchers in Italy on 11,323 patients, showed that one gram daily of EPA as a fish oil supplement taken for three months reduced the risk of sudden cardiac death from arrhythmia by one half compared to those who received a placebo. (Marchioli MD, Roberto Large study shows fish oil supplements reduce sudden cardiac death Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association, April 12, 2002, Consorzio Mario Negri Sud in Santa Maria Imbaro, Italy)

Women with diabetes, who are at an especially high risk of cardiovascular disease, can benefit from a diet rich in fish, according to research. The study found that the more fish these women ate, the less likely they were to develop heart disease over a 16-year period. In the study, women who ate fish at least five times per week showed the largest reduction in risk; they were 64 percent less likely to develop heart disease compared to women who rarely ate fish. (SoRelle R. Fish Provides Heart-Healthy Benefits for Diabetic Women, Circulation March 31, 2003;107:1852)

When adjustments are insufficient to achieve desirable results, the combined treatment with statins and Omega-3 fatty acids is an efficient treatment alternative for the prevention of heart disease. The mechanisms involved are only partly explained, however, the synergistic effects of statins and omega-3 fatty acids significantly reduce the risk for coronary heart disease (CHD) in patients with dyslipidemia. Nordoy A. Statins and omega-3 fatty acids in the treatment of dyslipidemia and coronary heart disease.
(Minerva Med. 2002 Oct;93(5):357-63. Department of Medicine, Institute of Clinical Medicine, University of Tromso, Tromso, Norway)

EPA-DHA rich fish oil also has mood-stabilizing properties when used in the treatment of bipolar disorder could potentially help control seizures. (Henry, Thomas, DHA levels implicated in epilepsy, American Academy of Neurology 04/05/2004, Emory University School of Medicine.)

 

Summary of uses

Sea Buckthorn oil is used to promote the healing of skin problems, such as burns, sunburns, eczema, psoriasis and conditions of mucous membranes of the gastro-intestinal tract - anti-ulcer. It possess radiation protective and cardiovascular enhancing actions: Antioxidative - inhibition of oxidation of LDL; Lipid modulation - inhibition of HMG CO-enzyme A reductase. Siberian Sea Buckthorn Concentrate to fish oil acts to protect against the oxidative stress that can be potentially induced by taking fish oil. The
carotenoid mixture also enhanced the plasma triglyceride-lowering effect of the fish oil.

 

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