Emu Oil Article: Benefits of Emu Oil for the Elderly
Emu oil has unique benefits like no other product on the market!
With an ever-increasing life expectancy and the oldest of the baby boomers approaching their mid-60's, the elderly will soon constitute a significant segment of the United States population, and will also be responsible for an even larger portion of U.S. health care costs. In addition to life-threatening complications such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, and sub-clinical malnutrition due to vitamin poor diets, the elderly are also prone to less serious but significant degenerative changes due to aging such as skin changes and chronic joint inflammation.
As a person ages, distinct changes in the skin take place. Most commonly, the skin becomes drier, thinner and heals slower. These changes often result in wrinkling, flaky skin and chronic lesions or sores. The skin care industry is a seven billion dollar industry in the United States alone. However, few products can successfully treat the numerous symptoms associated with aging skin. Similarly, numerous muscle, joint, and arthritis ointments and creams are available; however, the effectiveness of these creams is marginal at best.
A promising application that has unique benefits of no other product on the market is emu oil. The emu is the second largest bird in the world and is native to Australia. Emu meat is a rich source of protein and has a vitamin rich nutritional profile that is superior to other meats. The benefits of emu meat include low calories, low fat and saturated fat, and high levels of essential fatty acids and antioxidants. Emu oil shares a similarly unique beneficial composition. The fat from the emu is developed into emu oil, which has anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antibacterial effects when applied to the skin.
Aborigines have used emu oil for centuries to treat muscle, joint and skin problems. The oil is composed of a plethora of beneficial fatty acids including oleic, linoleic, linolenic and eicosenoic acids, to name a few. The anecdotal uses of this oil range from joint and muscle inflammation, burns, eczema, psoriasis and arthritis. Over the last decade, research has demonstrated what the aborigines have known for century's, emu oil works.
Emu oil acts to inhibit chronic joint inflammation when applied to the skin, but demonstrates no unwanted side effects like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) or arthritis drugs (Whitehouse 1998). Another study confirmed that the topical application of emu oil over an affected joint had strong anti-inflammatory properties and was effective in treating arthritis, with effects similar to that of taking 3,000 milligrams of ibuprofen (Snowden 1997).
In perhaps the most compelling study of the anti-inflammatory effects of emu oil, numerous substances were tested for their ability to reduce inflammation including emu oil, fish oil, flaxseed oil, olive oil, liquefied chicken fat or no treatment. It's worth mentioning that several of these compounds including fish, flaxseed, and olive oil have a proven track record of anti-inflammatory benefits. Although this study found that inflammation decreased with all active treatments, emu oil resulted in a 72% decrease in inflammation and was significantly better than any other oil tested. TNF-alpha, which is a substance that promotes inflammation, was decreased 60% with emu oil treatment (Yoganathan 2003). These outcomes of reduced inflammation, sometimes after only a few hours following treatment, have been confirmed by others (Lopez 1999).
Emu oil has also shown great promise in the treatment of wounds. A recent study tested the effects of saline, iodine, or emu oil on superficial burns. Within 3 days, the emu oil treatment decreased swelling and effusion, and no infection or adverse effects were observed. No beneficial skin changes were observed in the groups treated with saline or iodine. Emu oil also lowered levels of the pro-inflammatory substance TNF-alpha, similar to the previous study. Microscopic skin evaluation showed that the emu oil enhanced skin repair and new skin formation (Qiu 2005). The skin repairing properties of emu oil were also proven when studying the effects of twice daily administration of emu oil lotion on full-thickness skin defects. Wound size and new skin growth improved in only 2 days with emu oil lotion, but not with other ointments such as polysporin or cortaid (Politis 1998).
Research is proving that the benefits of emu oil to the skin and joints are numerous. The elderly may particularly benefit from daily application of this oil to offset the degenerative skin and joint changes associated with aging. In addition to the effectiveness of emu oil for skin and joint inflammation, an important benefit of emu oil is that, even with regular use, there are no known side effects and no toxicity has been reported, something that cannot be said about traditional medications used to treat these skin and joint problems. As research has proven, simply think of emu oil as a natural compound with no side effects that has unprecedented levels of liquid vitamins, essential fatty acids and antioxidants beneficial for the skin.
For more information about Emu Oil or to purchase Emu Oil Products go to www.UniquelyEmu.com or call them toll free at 1-888-383-9513.Dr. Linda Kennedy MS SLP ND
Whitehouse MW, Turner AG, Davis CK, Roberts MS. Emu oil(s): A source of non-toxic transdermal anti-inflammatory agents in aboriginal medicine. Inflammopharmacology. 1998;6(1):1-8
Snowden JM, Whitehouse MW. Anti-inflammatory activity of emu oils in rats. Inflammopharmacology. 1997;5(2):127-32.
Yoganathan S, Nicolosi R, Wilson T, Handelman G, Scollin P, Tao R, Binford P, Orthoefer F. Antagonism of croton oil inflammation by topical emu oil in CD-1 mice. Lipids. 2003 Jun;38(6):603-7.
Lopez A, Sims DE, Ablett RF, Skinner RE, Leger LW, Lariviere CM, Jamieson LA, Martinez-Burnes J, Zawadzka GG. Effect of emu oil on auricular inflammation induced with croton oil in mice. Am J Vet Res. 1999 Dec;60(12):1558-61.
Qiu XW, Wang JH, Fang XW, Gong ZY, Li ZQ, Yi ZH. Anti-inflammatory activity and healing-promoting effects of topical application of emu oil on wound in scalded rats. Di Yi Jun Yi Da Xue Xue Bao. 2005 Apr;25(4):407-10.
Politis MJ, Dmytrowich A. Promotion of second intention wound healing by emu oil lotion: comparative results with furasin, polysporin, and cortisone. Plast Reconstr Surg. 1998 Dec;102(7):2404-7.