By Larry Plesent
The latest research on shea butter, the African tree nut oil that is used as a moisturizer in everything from lotions to shampoo, shows that it may be even more beneficial to EAT YOUR SHEA BUTTER rather than simply slathering it onto your dry irritated skin. Now don’t get me wrong; I am a huge fan of shea slathering. Especially for dry cracked area around your fingers and to keep your face younger looking as you age (Cleopatra’s beauty secret).
It turns out that shea butter is so special (in part) because it contains molecules that turn off the enzyme that causes inflammation response, and then they tell your body to get into gear and heal up the irritation. They are called shea triterpenes, and they are my new best friend. But wait there’s more. Twenty minutes on Google revealed:
- Ten animal and human studies indicating that shea butter lowers cholesterol.
- Forty-four studies indicating shea butter is effective for inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis.
- Six studies showing moderate anti-tumor effects against cancer.
Before you rush out and start eating your hand lotion, one warning: only eat FOOD GRADE shea butter. Raw shea butter contains latex and other impurities that you don’t need to be eating. Food grade shea butter is winding its way through the regulatory process as you read this. Expect to start seeing it on the shelves in about a year. Shea butter supplements are also clearing regulatory. You will be able to start buying them on-line in another four months or so.
In the meantime, shea butter is a great winter skin remedy. Shameless Promotion: www.vermontsoap.com is a great place to go for latex free topical shea butter. Or stop by the Vermont Soap Discount Factory Outlet and Soap Museum for great deals on shea butter, shea butter soap and gifts for everyone on your list. Especially if they have sensitive skin.
This is the Soapman wishing you and yours a Happy Healthy Season.