Oh yeah... Oils!
I love oils. More so, I adore lipids, which is the general term for fats and oils. With all of the fat-free hype of the past few decades, Americans have been conditioned to flee from oils. Has any of this made us any thinner, nope, in fact we are getting fatter. Less than one-third of all U.S. adults age 20 or older are at a healthy weight, which means they have a BMI of 18.5 through 24.9. There are different oil types. Volatile oils or essential oils are the potent essence of the plant derived by distillation, maceration, and need to be diluted before being applied to skin. Carriers oils, such as: olive oil; grapeseed oil; or apricot kernel oil, are less potent and can be applied neat , or without dilution. Diluting an essential oil into the carrier is one way to get beneficial nutrients into the skin with irritation. Oils are necessary for health and are the basis for lotions creams and many serums. One of the most important reasons that oils are good for you is because they contain Essential Fatty Acids. Without Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) skin tends to develop skin disorders such as eczema, psoriasis or general itchy irritated bumpy textured skin.
Many oils that are used for cooking can also be beneficial when applied to hair skin and/or nails. Olive oil is not just for cooking, even though it is the only oil that I use for cooking and flavoring foodJ. I prefer to create and utilize olive oil infusions; these have served as the base for many healing balms and serums. Olive oil contains monounsaturated fats (the good fats), oleic acid (Omega-9 EFA), vitamins, polyphenols (free radical attackers) and some chlorophyll (great for wounds and scars). Many salves, lotions and creams have an olive oil base because of the healing properties and the nutrients found.
Omega-3, Omega-6, and Omega-9 are categories of Essential Fatty Acids. The importance of EFAs is apparent in the name because these need to be ingested on a daily basis for optimal health of body and mind. Folic Acid is an example of an important EFA that is needed by pregnant women to ensure that her unborn child does not develop spina bifida.
Depression, diabetes, acne, eczema, and psoriasis can be alleviated with the correct amounts of EFAs. Without EFAs ceramides do not exist. Ceramides are nearly half EFAs and are responsible for cellular processes. Cells are the basis for all life, so if cells are not functioning properly, neither can we.
National Center for Health Statistics. Chartbook on Trends in the Health of Americans. Health, United States, 2006. Hyattsville, MD: Public Health Service. 2006 as quoted in National Institutes of Health. Win - Statistics . 12 Oct 2007.