Sea buckthorn fruit is an amazing superfood that treats many ailments, from altitude sickness to diabetes. It is even a powerful skin care ingredient. Read further for 19 sea buckthorn health and beauty benefits.
I had never heard of sea buckthorn juice and oil until we visited Ladakh, way up in northern India. So, I had no idea that this tiny little golden berry was prized for its health and beauty benefits.
We were living in Rajasthan, India at the time, and were sweltering in the unbearable summer desert heat. When the temps topped 116 F, (and no air conditioning!) we decided to take up a friend’s long standing invitation to visit his houseboat on Dal Lake in Kashmir (at a much cooler 5,200 ft altitude!). We hadn’t thought we’d ever make it that far north, but in the heat of the Rajasthani summer, self preservation ruled and we decided to take the trip.
While there, we met some travelers who had just returned from Leh, Ladakh, a mere overnight bus ride from where we were in Srinigar. They were so into Leh that we heard about it for days! Originally part of Tibet, Ladakh is a primarily Buddist territory. It was annexed by India before the rest of Tibet was taken over by China. Luckier for the Ladakhis…at least, as a part of India, they are still free to practice their lifestyle and religion as before.
Having traveled that far, and realizing that the high Himalayas aren’t exactly right on the way to anywhere else, we were convinced that we would never have another opportunity. So, we decided to go on up to Leh and check it out. Another thing our new friends kept reminding us was that we needed to be careful about Leh’s 11,562 ft. altitude. And that’s where the amazing sea buckthorn juice and its nineteen proven health benefits comes into the story…
Sea Buckthorn Juice
Our new friends encouraged us to drink lots of Sea buckthorn juice, which is supposed to have properties that alleviate the symptoms of altitude sickness. Apparently altitude sickness is quite prevalent among tourists in Ladakh, particularly trekkers who don’t acclimate slowly to the high altitude.
Being into natural products and natural remedies, we were very excited to check out this new fruit juice/remedy/drink.
We arrived in Leh and immediately went to a market to purchase sea buckthorn juice. We sipped it continually for the first several days as we slowly meandered around town, gradually acclimatizing to the high elevation.
Where Does Sea Buckthorn Come From
We learned that sea buckthorn has been prized for centuries in Asia, even so far back as the 12th century. At that time, Genghis Khan used sea buckthorn for its energizing properties. It also protected his troops against harsh winter conditions and high altitude sickness.
These small shrubs (Hippophae rhamnoides) only grow sparsely in cold countries with very high altitudes, like China, Tibet and Pakistan. Therefore, sea buckthorn is considered somewhat of a community treasure in Ladakh and is highly prized for its unique properties.
Drinking Sea Buckthorn Juice
Sea buckthorn juice is bright orange, due to its high beta carotene content. Beta carotene is the same ingredient that gives carrots their bright orange color. Sea buckthorn juice is really tart! It tasted like a cross between apricot and peach juice, but with its own unique fruity flavor.
Sea buckthorn juice really needs a sweetener added to be palatable. Fortunately, we found lots of options – juice with sugar, juice with honey. and juice mixed with other fruit juices, like apple or apricot.
We also discovered that sea buckthorn oil can be taken internally (for example, 1-2 teaspoons per day) rather than drinking the juice.
Amazing Properties of Sea Buckthorn Juice or Oil
1. Prevents Altitude Sickness
Sea buckthorn combats altitude sickness, much as coca leaves are used as a traditional remedy by trekkers in Peru. Sea buckthorn has been used to combat altitude sickness for centuries throughout Asia – China, India, Tibet, Nepal, Russia, and Mongolia.
We are not fitness buffs or trekkers, so we were keen to avoid altitude sickness in Leh. We drank our sea buckthorn juice religiously and we did not get sick! Can I say 100% that it kept us from getting sick?
Of course not. But with the trekkers we met there also swearing by it, I’m willing to give sea buckthorn some of the credit.
We definitely had an easy transition to the high altitude. Plus, we benefited from sea buckthorn’s other amazing health benefits!
2. Lowers Blood Pressure
Sea buckthorn is high in the flavonoid quercetin, known for its ability to lower blood pressure.
Note: If you have naturally low blood pressure you should be cautious in taking sea buckthorn internally.
Sea buckthorn is high in antioxidants, which are important in our diets to slow down the aging process.
4. Anti-cancer, Arthritis, Heart Disease
Sea buckthorn juice is one of few vegetable sources that contain all four Omega fatty acids – Omega 3, Omega 6, Omega 7 and Omega 9. The Omega fatty acids scavenge free radicals, which is a key to fighting anaerobic diseases.
5. Aiding Type 2 Diabetes Patients
Due to Omega 7 fatty acids, sea buckthorn is said to be helpful to reducing blood sugar levels naturally.
6. Boosts Immune System
Sea buckthorn is chock full of flavonoids and cartonoids that strengthen the immune system with their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
7. Treat Ulcers and Digestive Ailments
Sea buckthorn’s natural plant constituents all work synergistically to treat gastric ulcers. These phytonutrients also repair gastric cellular structures and lubricate a dry digestive tract. This combats constipation and other digestive disorders.
8. Promotes a Healthy Liver
The anti-inflammatory elements of sea buckthorn may also be useful in promoting liver health and avoiding liver diseases, such as cirrhosis.
9. Combats Radiation Poisoning
Sea buckthorn has powerful anti-radiation properties. It is highly effective in protecting against harmful UV rays and in defense against radiation poisoning. Even Russian cosmonauts say that their ventures into space were helped by the sea buckthorn that they took as a preventative against potential radiation poisoning.
Sea Buckthorn Oil for Skin Care
In addition to drinking sea buckthorn juice or oil, sea buckthorn oil is also fantastic for external use.
Sea buckthorn oil is packed full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that fight against skin damage caused by free radicals. Being one of the few unique vegetable sources that contain those four Omega fatty acids (Omega 3, Omega 6 and Omega 9, plus the rare Omega 7), sea buckthorn oil stimulates skin cell growth to counteract skin aging.
Here are 10 ways that this super-oil benefits skin:
- Promotes skin elasticity
- Reduces wrinkles and weathered skin
- Softens and moisturizes skin
- Decreases inflammation
- Reduces stretch marks
- Protects against UV rays and sunburn
- Diminishes scarring
- Treats cuts and wounds
- Treats inflammation, thereby healing acne and rosacea
- Reduces enlarged pores and removes blackheads
I can’t say enough good things about sea buckthorn oil!
It has a high beta-carotene content, which provides its rich, brilliant color. The oil ranges from bright yellow-orange to deep orangy-red, depending on the ratio of fruit to seeds used in making the oil. It will not color your skin, but you can add a few drops to your creams and lotions if you don’t want to use the oil at full strength. It could stain clothing, so allow a few minutes for it to soak in to your skin.
Because it’s not always easy to find sea buckthorn fruit, it is possible add sea buckthorn to your diet regularly by taking sea buckthorn seed oil gel capsules ✓ as a supplement. Or, you could try these dried sea buckthorn veggie caps ✓. Sea buckthorn seed oil ✓ can be taken internally daily to aid in the prevention of numerous diseases, or used topically…it can even prevent and soothe sunburn, too! You can also try a mini bottle of the oil ✓ if you want to start small to see how it works for you.
Sea buckthorn oil can also be added to your beauty routine to counteract aging. With so many benefits, this wonder fruit is truly high on my list of powerful superfoods.
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