Evening primrose oil is made from the seeds of Oenothera biennis, a wildflower originating in eastern and Central America with yellow blooms that open in the evening. Evening primrose was used by indigenous Native American tribes for food and medicine, to treat bruises and haemorrhoids, minor wounds, gastrointestinal complaints, and sore throats.

A Naturally Rich Source Of Essential Fatty Acids

The seeds of the evening primrose are rich in the essential amino acids methionine and cysteine, important for protein synthesis and healthy skin, hair and nails. Evening primrose oil also contains gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), an omega-6 fatty acid used by the body to produce prostaglandins.

Prostaglandins are hormones created by the body at the site of tissue damage to stimulate reactions essential for the healing process, including pain, inflammation, blood clotting and vascular contraction. In women, prostaglandins play a role in regulating ovulation and the onset of labour.

Gamma-linolenic acid can be obtained by consuming a diet rich in essential fatty acids or by taking supplements extracted from GLA rich plant seeds such as borage and evening primrose.

Health Benefits Of Evening Primrose Oil

Evening primrose oil has been used as a culinary and medicinal plant for hundreds of years. Today, evening primrose supplements are taken to assist with hormone regulation and to maintain healthy skin, hair and bones. 

1) Hormone Regulation For Women

Evening primrose oil can be especially beneficial for women to alleviate symptoms of PMS and the menopause. The omega-6 fatty acids present in evening primrose oil are believed to help regulate hormone fluctuations responsible for a host of unwelcome symptoms, including tender breasts, water retention, mood swings, headaches and cyclic acne. Evening primrose oil can also be taken before and during menopause to moderate hot flushes.

Evening primrose oil is recommended as a natural therapy taken in conjunction with fish oil to help balance levels of oestrogen and progesterone in sufferers of the endocrine disorder Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS).

2) Increased Fertility

Evening primrose oil can be taken by women to help boost fertility and to create the optimum conditions within the body for conception. In addition to regulating hormones, GLA can also help increase production of fertile cervical mucus, essential for enabling sperm to reach the egg. 

3) To Stimulate Labour

For centuries midwives have used evening primrose oil to help prepare the cervix for labour. It is believed the GLA in evening primrose oil may trigger a prostaglandin response that causes the cervix to soften and thin. As GLA increases muscle contraction in the uterine wall it should be avoided until the final stages of pregnancy, when it can be taken as a supplement or applied directly.

4) To Treat Skin Conditions & Improve Skin Health

Evening primrose oil can be topically applied to skin to improve structure, elasticity and to reduce the appearance of scarring. As a supplement, evening primrose oil is used to help alleviate dryness and itching for sufferers of eczema and psoriasis and may also be used to treat atopic dermatitis.

While for most people the body uses enzymes to create gamma-linolenic acid from other fatty acids, sufferers of eczema and atopic dermatitis may have a defect in the enzyme delta-6-desaturase responsible for this synthesis. In a study published in the Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, 96 percent of atopic dermatitis patients treated with evening primrose oil for five months showed improvements in their condition.

Evening primrose oil may also be beneficial in treating acne caused by hormonal imbalances during puberty.

5) To Prevent Hair Loss

Hormones are responsible for regulating hair loss in both men and women. Hair loss in men is caused by the male androgen hormone DHT (5α-Dihydrotestosterone). High levels of DHT reduce the lifespan of the follicle, leading to male pattern baldness. In women, hair loss is commonly associated with stress, hormone imbalance and thyroid problems.

Both men and women can take evening primrose supplements to help prevent and reduce hair loss. The oil can also be massaged into the scalp to stimulate regrowth.

6) Increased Bone Strength

Essential fatty acids are vital for healthy absorption of minerals from the small intestine. It is believed that evening primrose oil taken with fish oil, vitamin D and calcium can help increase calcium absorption and promote calcium deposition in bone. This can be especially beneficial for women approaching the menopause and the elderly, to help reduce bone loss and prevent osteoporosis. 

7) To Reduce Stiffness In Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease which causes the body’s immune system to attack healthy tissue. The condition affects the joints, causing stiffness and pain. Evening primrose supplements can be taken to suppress inflammatory responses and reduce symptoms. 

How To Take Evening Primrose Oil

Evening primrose oil can be taken in capsules. To improve general hormonal health and metabolic function, always follow the dosage recommended by the manufacturer, as taking more than the recommended dose can create an imbalance in prostaglandin production. For treating specific health conditions, or if you are taking medication you should consult your health practitioner prior to taking supplements.

How To Choose The Best Evening Primrose Capsules

Always check that your supplements contain cold pressed evening primrose oil. This means the goodness has been naturally extracted without the use of chemical solvents, to preserve the nutritional and therapeutic ingredients.

Affordable Evening Primrose Capsules From Hellenia

Evening primrose oil capsules are readily available for fast delivery from Hellenia in pack sizes of 90 or 180 capsules.

To place an order for our affordable, high quality capsules made from cold pressed evening primrose oil, click here to visit our online store today.