(NaturalNews) The borage plant is from the Boraginaceae family, and it mainly grows in the Mediterranean region, although it's also cultivated in Europe and the United States. Apparently, the Romans would drink borage tea combined with wine before going to battle, as they believed that it would give them inner strength. Its leaves are edible, and in Italy you'll sometimes find it as a side dish, but it's specifically when transformed into borage oil that it can work wonders for your health.
Generally speaking, borage has very decent levels of iron, calcium, zinc and potassium, as well as vitamins B and C, but its most important nutrients are definitely the gamma-linolenic acids that it is strongly filled with and which the human body cannot synthesize. A deficiency of these omega-6 fatty acids tends to negatively impact mood, allow internal inflammation to take place or even alter certain cellular functions.
Various studies have showed that borage can help alleviate symptoms related to rheumatoid arthritis, cough and chest congestion or possibly even the nervous system. Although borage oil does provide relief for all the above conditions, research shows that the most promising results are associated with its anti-inflammatory and skin rejuvenation properties.
A study shows that borage oil can effectively treat skin conditions in women
The British Journal of Nutrition reported in 2009 a study focused on analyzing flaxseed and borage oil's capacity to modulate women's skin conditions that cause irritations and reddening. Control groups, including a placebo group, were formed, with participants on hand for a total of 12 weeks. The women were regularly given a placebo or 2.2-gram doses of flaxseed oil or borage oil. The placebo group displayed very few changes throughout the course of these tests, while the fatty acid groups showed significant improvements. By taking the fatty acid oils, skin reddening was quickly reduced, skin hydration improved and roughness and scaling of the skin were drastically diminished.
Research has also shown that borage oil can adequately treat periodontitis. It basically encourages gum health while containing gingivitis. Some of periodontitis' main symptoms are bleeding and receding gums that eventually also cause teeth to loosen. Borage oil's omega-6 fatty acids contribute to alter the development of prostaglandins which are involved in the inflammation process. In a 12-week study involving 24 individuals suffering from periodontitis, borage oil clearly demonstrated its ability in neutralizing gingivitis and stabilizing the depth of pockets around teeth.
On a last note, research seems to show that frequent ingestion of borage oil can cut the symptoms of cough and chest tightness by regulating the inflammatory mediators and neutrophils. Although no research using borage oil would suggest it for the time being, it is still reasonable to imagine how it may very well help with cases of inflammation in various other parts of the body.