The Mysterious Curative Effects of Evening Primrose Oil

Evening primrose (Eveningprimrose) is a willow leaf vegetable native to North America. It gets its name because its flowers only bloom at night. Its roots, stems and leaves are often used as medicine by European nobles, so it is also known as the emperor’s panacea.

Modern research has found that evening primrose oil extracted from evening primrose seeds is rich in GLA (gamma-linolenic acid). GLA is an unsaturated fatty acid, which is an important component of human cell membranes. Most importantly, it can be converted into the important anti-inflammatory hormone PGE1, which has the effect of preventing and improving various chronic diseases.

Table of Evening Primrose Oil

What is Evening Primrose?

Evening Primrose

Evening primrose is just a small plant with beautiful yellow flowers; it is not inconspicuous at all, just like wild flowers and weeds common on the roadside. Evening primrose likes to grow in the sand, and it can be seen in deserted land, along the railway line and on the roadside in the countryside. Now, in addition to its original growth place, we can also find patches of evening primrose in the farmland; farmers plant it as a cash crop! After the evening primrose seeds are harvested, the very valuable evening primrose oil can be extracted!

Evening primrose is also called “evening primrose oil”; but strictly speaking, it is not a kind of “primrose”; it should belong to the heather family.

The flowers of evening primrose are bright yellow, very similar to real primroses; and evening primroses bloom in the evening, so some people call it “evening primrose”. Evening primrose blooming time is very strange: from 6 to 7 o’clock in the evening, there are almost 8 to 10 fragrant evening primrose flowers blooming at any time. If the next day is cloudy, these flowers can continue to bloom throughout the day; if the next day is sunny, the flowers will quickly wither. In the UK, evening primrose blooms from the end of June to mid-August.

What is Evening Primrose Oil?

Evening primrose oil, formerly known as evening primrose, is mainly composed of r-linolenic acid, which can reconcile base oils and essential oils to achieve whitening, treatment of cardiovascular diseases, premenstrual syndrome, and menopausal syndrome. It can also be used for aromatherapy , Improve eczema, psoriasis, help wound healing, promote nail development, and solve hair problems. Thousands of years ago, the ancient Indians used a medicine to solve their ailments. This magical elixir only blooms at night. People extracted the essence from its plant seeds, so it was named evening primrose.

Evening primrose oil has a wide range of medical and medicinal values in improving skin quality, anti-aging, promoting shiny hair, regulating blood pressure, and improving blood circulation. In addition, evening primrose is also anti-inflammatory, which helps maintain healthy joints and prevent inflammation in other tissues. Especially for women, evening primrose oil is a treasure, an absolute friend of women! It is simply a necessity for female compatriots at home!

Evening Primrose Oil

What are the proven benefits of Evening Primrose Oil recommended?

Premenstrual syndrome, often called premenstrual stress disorder, refers to various physical and psychological discomforts that occur a period of time before menstruation. It is estimated that about 80-90% of women of childbearing age suffer from these distresses.

There are still many reasons for premenstrual syndrome, among which the most common is the lack of the first prostaglandin PGE1, which is related to the high prolactin (Prolactin), and the GLA (γ- Linolenic acid) was found to increase PGE1 and inhibit Prolactin, so it is believed to improve PMS.

The effect of evening primrose oil on improving PMS can be said to be both positive and negative. Early studies are biased in favor, while recent studies have confirmed that the effect is no better than placebo, or only slightly improved.

Dry eye syndrome is one of the fastest-growing eye diseases, mainly caused by insufficient or poor tear production, often causing a stinging and burning sensation in the eyes, and blurred vision, making it difficult to focus on things that require eyesight. The estimated prevalence of dry eye syndrome in the general population ranges from 7.4% to 33.7%.

Older people (especially post-menopausal women) are the most common people suffering from dry eye syndrome. Other factors, such as wearing contact lenses, drug use, and excessive viewing of computers and mobile phones, may further trigger or aggravate dry eye symptoms.

A double-blind controlled study (6 months in 76 patients with contact lens-related dry eye syndrome) found that taking evening primrose oil improved overall contact lens comfort (contactlenscomfort, by 20%), and reduced dry eye evaluation scores (by 40%).

The underlying mechanism is related to the increased tear production (measured by tearmeniscus height) and anti-inflammatory effects of evening primrose oil, but due to the small number of samples, more studies are needed to further confirm.

Diabetes is a dangerous disease that has no obvious symptoms on the surface but secretly destroys the body. The most troublesome thing is that once the long-term blood sugar control is poor (at least 10 years), it may cause three major complications, such as retinopathy and nephropathy and neuropathy.

Among them, neuropathy mostly occurs in the fingers and toes. In the early stage, you will feel soreness, numbness and tingling.

In the study, it was found that gammalinolenic acid (GLA) in evening primrose (480mg daily) can improve the clinical symptoms of diabetic neuropathy (including pain, weakness, etc.), especially for patients with good blood sugar control.

How much you eat and move can be said to be the most common lifestyle of modern people, and it has also made weight loss a norm. Although there are many ways to lose weight, the difficulty is how to maintain the weight for a long time.

And the wrong way to lose weight often leads to repeated weight loss, always cycling back and forth between weight loss and weight gain, and the weight goes up and down, forming the so-called Yo-yo effect (Yo-yo effect).

In a double-blind controlled study, it was found that the use of GLA (890mg per day) for one year can effectively reduce the weight gain after weight loss. The group taking GLA only gained 5 pounds of weight, while the control group increased by 19 pounds (taking olive oil), and BorageOil (borage oil) was used in the experiment, and evening primrose oil also had the same effect.

GLA (γ-linolenic acid) can be converted into the first prostaglandin PGE1 (ProstaglandinE1) in the human body, and PGE1 has anticoagulant and anti-inflammatory effects in the human body. Other GLA anti-inflammatory mechanisms are listed below:

Inhibit COX-2 and LOX enzymes, prevent arachidonic acid (mainly from meat and eggs) from being converted into pro-inflammatory substances (this mechanism is the same as that of general non-steroidal drugs, but without side effects).

Inhibition of NF-kB transcription factor: NF-kB is a protein complex that is the master switch of the inflammatory machinery in cells.

Activation of PPAR receptors: PPAR is a cell receptor related to metabolism, which has an important impact on blood pressure, blood sugar and inflammation. When PPAR is suppressed, it is easy to cause cell damage and cause cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer.

Eczema, officially called atopic dermatitis in medicine, is the most common skin disease (redness, swelling, dryness, itching, etc.), and about 2%-7% of the population suffers from this disease.

The biggest feature is that it will keep scratching during the attack, and it will even scratch the skin in severe cases, making it unbearable for patients. In general treatment, oral antihistamines are the most common prescription, but they often lead to side effects such as drowsiness. Taking them during the day can easily affect concentration and cause inconvenience.

Clinically, it is found that eczema patients often cannot produce enough anti-inflammatory hormones (because of poor ability to convert fatty acids into GLA (gamma-linolenic acid)).

By supplementing GLA in evening primrose oil, it has a significant effect on improving eczema. In the experiment, 96% of the patients’ skin inflammation was significantly improved. It is a very safe natural prescription without side effects.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a systemic inflammatory disease (a type of autoimmune disease) caused by immune cells attacking body tissues, causing chronic inflammation of specific joints (common in the joints of the hands and feet), which can lead to severe and even loss of strength in the hands and feet, and even The joints are severely deformed.

Evening primrose oil can be used as a natural prescription for improving rheumatoid arthritis, and can even replace NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs).

In a study published by Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, it was found that 94% of patients who took evening primrose oil had significant improvement in pain and morning joint stiffness, but the effect would not appear until 1 to 3 months.


Studies have shown that evening primrose oil has remarkable effects in antithrombotic, blood fat-lowering, and blood-sugar-lowering effects, and has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative effects. It has been widely used in diabetes, hyperlipidemia, atherosclerosis, and coronary heart disease. In the treatment of other diseases.

Evening Primrose Oil

Clinical application of Evening Primrose Oil

After extensive clinical application, evening primrose oil has been proved to have significant curative effect on hyperlipidemia, coronary heart disease, diabetes and so on. Evening primrose oil preparations have achieved satisfactory results in the treatment of diseases such as duodenal ulcer, acne, obesity and primary nephrotic syndrome. At present, evening primrose oil has also aroused widespread interest in the fields of anti-cancer, anti-aging, and health food therapy. Clinically used evening primrose oil formulations generally include soft capsules, emulsions, pills, creams, and the like.

Evening Primrose Oil Soft Capsule is a blood lipid-lowering drug newly recorded in the second volume of the Chinese Pharmacopoeia 200 edition. Tan Kean et al. reported that 8 patients with hyperlipidemia took evening primrose oil capsules orally for 4 to 6 weeks. Serum TC, TG, LDL and HDL were measured before and after taking the medicine. reached 84.1%; LDL decreased by an average of 2 years, and the effective rate was 74.4%. Compared with before treatment, the differences were significant.

Using soybean lecithin as an emulsifier, the evening primrose oil is made into an emulsion. The average particle size of the dispersed phase is 1-2, which is very easy to be absorbed by the body. It is predicted by chemical kinetics that the stable period of the preparation is 1.43 at room temperature. Compared with evening primrose oil soft capsules, the total effective rate of lowering triglyceride and raising high-density lipoprotein cholesterol in the emulsion group was higher than that of the soft capsule group, and there was no significant difference in the total effective rate of lowering cholesterol.

After taking evening primrose oil pills for 2 months for patients with lipid metabolism disorders caused by chronic nephritis, polycystic kidney disease, and hypertensive glomerular arteriosclerosis, it was found that their cholesterol levels decreased, blood urea nitrogen (BUN) And blood muscle match (cSr) level also decreased, hyperlipidemia was partially corrected, azotemia also improved accordingly. It shows that evening primrose oil has a good effect on improving the renal function of these patients. Observing the change of platelet aggregation rate before and after treatment with evening primrose seed oil pills on 128 patients with hyperlipidemia, it was found that the platelet inhibition rate increased after treatment, which proves that evening primrose seed oil pills have a significant effect on platelet aggregation in patients with hyperlipidemia inhibition. 64 cases of acne were treated with evening primrose oil pills and spironolactone tablets. As a result, 26 cases were cured, 14 cases were markedly effective, 16 cases were improved, and 8 cases were ineffective. The total effective rate was 87.5%.

Evening primrose oil is a natural vegetable oil that contains saturated and unsaturated fatty acids, among which high-carbon fatty acids such as oleic acid, linoleic acid, and linolenic acid are high in content. Moreover, it is easily absorbed by skin microvessels, which can promote blood circulation and prevent epidermal keratinization. It can be made into a cream and applied to the skin surface to keep it lubricated and delay skin aging.


What are the uses of primrose oil?  Medically reviewed by Debra Rose Wilson, Ph.D., MSN, R.N., IBCLC, AHN-BC, CHT

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