Evening Primrose Oil (EPO) is an Omega-6 fatty acid which is derived from the ‘essential’ linoleic acid, another Omega-6 fatty acid. Just like the essential Omega-3’s, they provide numerous benefits to health. Equally, they need to be eaten in the diet, or taken in supplement form, because the body cannot make them. However, these powerful Omega-6 fatty acids are not found in high amounts in foods.
The key benefit to taking EPO in supplement form is that it is high in gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), as well as linoleic acid, and this is where the key to great health is stored. Therefore, always ensure that your chosen supplement has a high ratio of GLA, as products do vary.
So here’s just a snapshot of some of the reasons EPO is so beneficial to health:-
Evening Primrose Oil and Acne
As we know EPO provides many health benefits but it is particularly effective when used in conditions of acne and other skin complaints, especially eczema. It has a general anti-inflammatory effect because the GLA produces hormone-like compounds known as prostaglandins. Where there is inflammation, this often manifests itself in the skin, hence acne, eczema or other skin conditions are more likely. EPO works particularly well with vitamin E, encouraging great improvements in skin tone, moisture and condition.
Evening Primrose and PMS
There are many symptoms associated with PMS but two of the most common, and unpleasant, are breast tenderness and water retention. However, both of these symptoms are primarily caused by an imbalance in our electrolytes which help control the water in and out of our cells. This function, is in turn, managed by another hormonal system in the body; remember that all our hormones are linked – you cannot separate one from another. Hence, taking EPO all month long, can have a tremendous balancing effect. The benefit can generally be felt within two menstrual cycles.It appears that many women who suffer the unpleasant symptoms of PMS, also tend to suffer more during the menopause; and some of the symptoms are the same. Additionally, many women suffer from low moods during the menopause and GLA has also been found to be effective for depression. It would seem that people suffering from depression often show low levels of GLA in the blood. Other symptoms of the menopause also include painful breasts and skin ‘break-outs’. Again, both of these conditions can be effectively treated using EPO