You already know flaxseed oil is great for fighting inflammation and high cholesterol. But did you know the oil can work wonders for your skin too? Yes it can! Read on to learn more about all the flaxseed oil benefits for skin.
Flaxseed Oil Properties
The botanical name for flax is Linum usitatissimum.
The seeds are used to make the oil, which is sometimes called linseed oil. Funny enough, you can find linseed oil in paints, lubricants, linoleum and in wood finishes.
Um what? It’s true. There are a lot of industrial applications for the oil. But flaxseed oil is also edible. Tons of people – especially vegetarians – use it as a source for omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. And it is these fatty acids that make the oil so good for your skin.
Color and smell of flaxseed oil
The oil can be pale yellow to golden and doesn’t have a smell really.
The oil is light, absorbs fast and doesn’t leave your skin feeling ikky or greasy. But there is a catch:
The comedogenic rating of flaxseed oil is 4 (out of 5). That means it is very likely to cause breakouts. Acne alert! So don’t use flaxseed oil on your face if you are prone to breakouts.
What is in the oil?
Flaxseed oil contains high levels of alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid. It can make up about 50% to 70% of the oil.
Oleic acid can also be found in it and can make up 10% to 20%. Palmitic acid, stearic acid, and arachidic acid have also been identified in the oil.
Flaxseed Oil Benefits
There are amazing flaxseed oil benefits. When consumed, it can help with arthritis, high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes and more. But it may interact with some medications so you should talk to your doctor before eating the oil.
When used on your skin, flaxseed oil can help:
- moisturize and hydrate it
- reduce skin sensitivity
- improve rough, scaly skin
- reduce redness, swelling and inflammation
- improve psoriasis
- heal cuts and wounds
Isn’t the oil awesome? Here are studies that prove these flaxseed oil benefits for skin.
It is hydrating and moisturizing
A few studies show flaxseed oil can reduce transepidermal water loss. What on earth does that mean? Well, the oil can slow down water loss from your skin, which means your skin will stay hydrated. Nice!
The oil is also light and deeply moisturizing. It will make your skin feel so soft and supple. That’s great for all skin types, except acne-prone skin (because it’s highly comedogenic).
It can reduce skin sensitivity
Ok so eating flaxseed oil may help if you have sensitive skin. At least that is according to this rather small 2011 study.
Researchers asked 13 women to either add flaxseed oil or safflower oil to their diet. Interestingly, the flaxseed oil group saw major reductions in their skin sensitivity. Wow!
It helps rough, scaly skin
The same study you just read about also found the oil reduced skin roughness and scaling. And the skin of the women were much smoother than before.
Amazing! So get rid of your rough, scaly skin with flaxseed oil. It’s perfect for winter time … or any time you need smooth skin…. which is basically always. Heh!
It may reduce inflammation
Again the study mentioned also highlighted the benefits of alpha-linolenic acid on inflammation. That means flaxseed oil, which contains so much linolenic acid, is anti-inflammatory. So use the oil to soothe your red, irritated, swollen skin. Yay!
Use flaxseed oil for psoriasis
Take a look at this 2016 study. It’s a great read for anyone who suffers from psoriasis. It compiled all the causes as well as common, natural treatments used for psoriasis.
It noted the skin issue can be caused by liver, spleen or stomach problems. Eating too much beef, veal, eggplant and even fish can also cause it. Did you know that?
Anyway, the study cited several oils are used to naturally treat psoriasis. And flaxseed, wheat germ oil, and black seed oil are the most commonly-used oils.
So use flaxseed oil for psoriasis! It can certainly help.
It heals cuts
Another animal study from 2011 showed similar findings. It used low doses of the oil on the wounds of the animals and showed they almost totally healed within two weeks.
Waw! So heal cuts and wounds and prevent major scarring with this oil.
Don’t you just love these flaxseed oil benefits for skin?
Where to buy flaxseed oil?
Flaxseed oil is widely available. You can pick it up at your local health store. Or on Amazon.
Flaxseed Oil Uses
You can ingest the oil but it can interact with some medications like blood thinners. So talk to your doctor before consuming this oil. You should know large doses of the oil can cause diarrhea. So definitely get your doctor’s opinion about dosage too.
You can also use the oil on your skin. But patch test first to make sure you are not allergic.
Remember the oil has a high comedogenic rating (4 out of 5), so avoid using it on acne-prone skin.
Once you are not allergic, then use flaxseed oil:
For dry skin: The oil keeps skin hydrated and moisturized. So apply a couple drops to your dry areas like your elbows, knees, and ankles.
For red, rough spots: Ugh! Red, dry, itchy skin during the winter is the worst! Isn’t it? Try flaxseed on it. It can reduce redness, soothe skin and keep it hydrated and wonderful.
For massaging: You can use the oil for massaging. Mix it with any essential oil to make a wonderful aromatherapy blend.
How else do you use this oil? Leave a comment and let me know. 🙂 Also check out more more benefits of flaxseed oil over at behealthy.com.