Building science backs sea buckthorn’s cardiovascular, antioxidant benefits
“Its beneficial properties against cardiovascular disorders have been attributed to its high unsaturated fatty acid content and range of phytosterols, especially beta-sitosterol,” wrote Dr. Beata Olas of the Department of General Biochemistry at the University of Lods in her paper, published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology.
The bush plant is naturally distributed throughout the Eurasian continent from the Baltic and North seas in the west to Central Asia in the east. For her review, Olas looked at in vitro and in vivo studies on humans and animals, combining multiple varieties of the plant, as well as multiple oil preparations (either from the seeds, pulp, or fruit).
Her review included four human studies and 11 animal studies. In one 2015 study on rabbits, researchers found that supplementing sea buckthorn seed oil protected the liver against the oxidative produced by thermally oxidized lipids.
A more recent study, from 2016, found that oil extracted from sea buckthorn fruit flesh, seeds, and peel protected against chronic stress-induced inhibition of natural killer cells in rats when applied at a dose of 10 ml/kg for 21 days.
In addition, Olas looked at five studies that provide evidence of sea buckthorn oil’s cardioprotective potential.
“They suggest that the cardioprotective effects of the oil may be due to the presence of unsaturated fatty acids, phytosterols and vitamins A and E; these may have synergistic actions on cardiovascular health when given in combination,” she wrote.
The building scientific literature suggests why sea buckthorn, approved for clinical use in hospitals in Russia and in China, is “a unique plant with great medical value,” Olas added.
“Although the cardioprotective action of the oil on humans is not well known, these properties could be clarified by animal studies and in vitro trials. Therefore, further well-controlled and high-quality studies based on human subjects are required to determine the prophylactic and therapeutic doses of sea buckthorn oil for use in later clinical studies.”
Source: Journal of Ethnopharmacology
Published online ahead of print, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2017.11.022
The beneficial health aspects of sea buckthorn (Elaeagnus rhamnoides (L.) A.Nelson) oil
Author: Beata Olas