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starflower oil benefits

7 Benefits Of Starflower Oil

When we’re deciding on the right supplements, it’s hugely important to understand their advantages, and choosing to use starflower oil benefits our bodies in a wide variety of ways. These diverse effects all contribute towards the excellent profile of starflower oil.

Whether you’ve only briefly heard about starflower oil capsules and their benefits, or you’re curious about how starflower benefits skin, our complete guide will explore all of the health benefits of starflower oil supplements, as well as any side effects of starflower oil you need to be aware of.

We’ll also explore how you can get the right dosage of this superb supplement, and where you can purchase it that’s convenient for you.

Contents:

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What Is Starflower Oil?

When it comes to supplements, it’s vital to know what you’re putting into your body, and where it’s derived from. This not only helps us better understand how a supplement (such as starflower oil) benefits our bodies, but how much we need to take to fully experience those advantages.

Supplements are great for a wide variety of purposes, but they’re often used to augment exercise. Read more in our complete guide to the best yoga supplements.

We’ll touch on how much starflower oil you should take later in this article, but let’s first explore what this spectacular supplement is, and where it originated. Also known as “borage”, starflower grows across various locations worldwide, but is predominantly found in the Mediterranean region.

While the leaves are consumed for their flavour, its seeds produce the much sought after starflower oil, which is often used in both liquid and supplement form to achieve the starflower oil benefits we’ll explore in our next section. 

These seeds naturally produce high quantities of the essential fatty acids Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA) and Linolenic Acid (LA) which, when taken in supplement form, are often enriched with added Vitamin E to provide additional benefits. 

These three key components are where the majority of the starflower oil benefits come from, providing a wide variety of both mental and physical health benefits.

What Are The Benefits Of Taking Starflower Oil?

#1 - Helps With Hormonal Balance

Perhaps one of the most well documented starflower oil benefits is its ability to ease the symptoms of hormonal imbalances and pre-menstrual stress (PMS). These can often include stomach cramping, mood swings, and an inconsistent or imbalanced menstrual cycle.

This is primarily down to the high levels of GLA found in starflower oil, which benefits the body by reducing levels of inflammation which can contribute towards some of the symptoms that might result from a hormonal imbalance.

In fact, these versatile supplements are often recommended for women over a certain age. The starflower oil benefits for PMS symptoms are wide-reaching, and can even alleviate some of the more uncomfortable difficulties you might experience.

The science supports this, too. Recent studies in the field uncovered a distinctive link between the consumption of starflower oil supplements, and a significant reduction in the prevalence of “hot flushes” and menstrual cramps amongst women over 50.

Incorporating a healthy diet with plenty of the right metabolism boosting foods alongside these starflower oil benefits for PMS and hormonal imbalances can ensure a much better quality of life, and a much more balanced lifestyle. 

It also means that these supplements can become more bioavailable, meaning they enter the bloodstream quicker, and with increased effectiveness.

#2 - Reduces Inflammation

While we often associate the word with negative connotations, inflammation is part of the body’s natural defence system, and contributes towards our immune system’s ability to deal with disease, illness, and bacterias that can enter the body and cause severe issues.

Having high levels of inflammation can lead to serious complications, especially with the body’s vital organs. This includes certain forms of cancer, cardiovascular issues, and problems with circulation.

Sadly, the body can’t reduce this level of inflammation naturally, which is why it’s vital that we consume the right foods and supplements to aid with this. We’ve compiled a complete report on the best immunity-boosting foods, but combining this with the health benefits of starflower oil can make a huge difference.

Inflammation occurs throughout the body and, as we’ve already touched upon, is part of the body’s defences against harmful, invasive pathogens. The high GLA content of starflower oil (which makes up many of the starflower oil benefits we’ll be looking at) aids substantially in the reduction of those levels of inflammation.

GLA is an essential fatty acid (similar to the Omega-3 we find in oily fish and cod liver oil), which have long been proven to actively combat inflammation in the body, and reduce these levels over time to ensure that our body can self-regulate effectively and safely.

This is perhaps one of the more subtle starflower oil benefits, as it’s not something we can immediately see, but it’s definitely an effect that can have far-reaching advantages for both the present and the future.

#3 - Aids With Menopausal Symptoms

Most commonly affecting women in their late 40s and 50s, the menopause brings with it significant imbalances of the female hormones, as well as unpleasant side effects that often include temperature fluctuations (usually referred to as hot flushes), difficulty with sleeping, mood changes, and tenderness or soreness around the breasts.

One of the main starflower oil benefits for menopause sufferers is its ability to mitigate against some of these symptoms, and reduce the impact they can have on your day-to-day life, especially if you’re undertaking a strenuous task, like manual work or running everyday.

This ability is well documented, too, with many prominent studies in the field discovering an irrefutable connection between consuming a supplement that’s rich in GLA, and a significant reduction in the symptoms of menopause, with no sign of any negative or adverse effects.

Not only that, but (as we examined with our previous section on the health benefits of starflower oil for women, the reduction in inflammation can help to fight some of the more physical pains that you might experience during menopause.

The more tangible inflammation that causes the tender or sore feeling around the breasts is reduced by taking a supplement that’s rich in GLA, such as starflower oil. 

The previously mentioned study found a definitive dip in the amount of hot flushes in particular in those who experienced the health benefits of starflower oil during menopause.

Furthermore, one of the more immediate starflower oil benefits for menopause sufferers is that it can even help curb some of the pain you might experience as a result of that tenderness.

#4 - Eases Arthritic Aches

Arthritis is a chronic condition that causes significant pain around the joints, and in more serious cases can impede the sufferer’s ability to walk or perform simple daily tasks, such as reaching for something from the cupboard, or holding a pen.

Arguably one of the most crucial starflower oil benefits is that it can mitigate against some of the pain that those suffering with arthritis feel, and even allow them some respite from the condition, particularly in the morning.

A comprehensive study first uncovered the link, and since then, more evidence has been established supporting the fact that the high content of GLA in starflower oil has significant benefits for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. 

Again, this links to one of our previous health benefits of starflower oil, in that it can significantly aid in the reduction of inflammation, which is often a contributing factor to the aches and pains of arthritis.

For further information on relieving persistent pains, OriGym have compiled a complete guide to the best CBD oils for pain relief.

As this is one of the most established starflower oil benefits, we’d advise you to aim to include a starflower oil supplement as part of your daily routine, especially if your aches and pains are stopping you from achieving what you want to achieve.

#5 - Improves Skin Health

Our skin is often subjected to the worst of the weather and all that the world can throw at us, and finding the right skincare options can be integral to keeping your skin looking vibrant and youthful.

Perhaps one of the more surprising starflower oil skin benefits is that it can help to rejuvenate and brighten up your complexion, as well as actively combatting more prominent skin problems, such as acne and eczema.

One important thing to note about GLA (the main reason behind the starflower oil benefits we’re looking at) is that it’s a fatty acid. This healthy fat provides the skin with a barrier against external irritants (such as dust) that can cause more serious issues.

In fact, a recent study discovered just how starflower oil benefits acne sufferers, as well as those with chronic or recurring problems with dry skin, with over half the study’s participants seeing visible improvements over a short period of time.

This is perhaps one of the more revolutionary health benefits of starflower oil for skin, in that it can not only actively fight more prevalent issues (like dry skin and eczema), but skincare is often a key factor in self confidence, meaning these starflower oil benefits for skin improve not only our physical health, but our mental health, too.

Combining this with exercise can seriously improve our psychological well being - explore more in our complete guide to the mental health benefits of running.

#6 - Combats Cardiovascular Issues

Our heart is perhaps our most important organ - it provides oxygenated blood to all our other organs, and ensures our body can continue to function as effectively as possible. Therefore, it makes sense that we'd want to use everything we possibly can to look after this vital organ.

Next on our list of the health benefits of starflower oil is its ability to provide support for the heart, and actively help in combating serious cardiovascular issues, and possibly even mitigating against the root causes of heart complications.

While research is limited, there have been significant findings, with one study pointing towards a definitive link between consumption of a bioavailable source of GLA (such as starflower oil supplements) and lower blood pressure, which is often a key contributor towards more serious cardiovascular issues, such as heart disease.

Perhaps more important is that starflower oil benefits us further by helping to lower overall stress levels, which have a significant impact on our heart health, and how well our body deals with everyday stresses.

All of these, plus understanding the benefits of regular exercise, can seriously help to provide us with a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. While there are numerous benefits of starflower oil supplements, it’s including them with a balanced lifestyle that really makes a significant difference.

#7 - Boosts Antioxidant Levels

The final advantage in our exploration of the health benefits of starflower oil is its ability to boost our levels of antioxidants, helping to prevent oxidative stress from occurring across the body.

Antioxidants actively combat potentially harmful molecules known as “free radicals”, and ensure that they can’t cause harm, or take on dangerous properties. Left unchecked, “free radicals” can cause significant damage to our cells, and lead to serious issues, such as oxidative stress, heart disease, and even cancers.

However, one of the more recently established starflower oil benefits is that it can actively play a role in boosting the levels of antioxidants we have in our bodies. Now, while the body does make these naturally, it doesn’t produce enough of them, and we need to get them from other sources.

Our food is a fantastic source of antioxidants (explore more in our comprehensive overview of the best antioxidant foods) but increasing this intake with a starflower oil supplement benefits us hugely.

And with a recent study discovering a link between the GLA content of starflower oil capsules, and a reduction in the oxidative stress caused by radiotherapy, these supplements can even create a much better quality of life for those suffering from certain cancers.

Potential Side Effects Of Starflower Oil

While the health benefits of starflower oil are wide ranging, and often surprising (such as how starflower oil benefits our skin), it is vital to consider the other side of the coin. We’ll examine in close detail all of the potential side effects of starflower oil, and how you can mitigate against them.

 

#1 - Can Cause Stomach Issues

Perhaps one of the more immediately noticeable side effects of starflower oil is that it can cause stomach discomfort, usually in the form of mild cramping and bloating, but this can lead to more concerning problems, like nausea and diarrhoea. 

Starflower oil’s high GLA content, while it forms the basis of many of the starflower oil benefits we’ve examined, can cause these issues, and while they are usually mild, they are definitely worth being aware of. 

The important information to note here is that, while it’s important to mention these symptoms as side effects of starflower oil, these are almost always very mild, and only in rare cases will they cause significant problems. 

However, if these symptoms persist, or you’re in pain after taking them, we would strongly advise stopping your intake of the supplements, and visiting your GP before you start including them as part of your daily routine again. 

While we want as many people as possible to experience the myriad health benefits of starflower oil (for women and men), it’s vitally important to be comfortable while doing so.

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#2 - Could Trigger Allergic Reactions

While this is a persistent danger with anything new that we put into our bodies, it’s of particular importance when considering something we likely won’t have had the opportunity to experience before.

One of the less prevalent (but still important to be aware of) side effects of starflower oil is that it can trigger allergic reactions. These will usually be mild symptoms, such as sneezing or a tickly throat. 

However, these can progress into more serious symptoms, which can include dizziness, fatigue, rashes and swelling, or light-headedness. If this happens, it’s imperative that you stop taking the supplements, and visit your doctor before starting up again.

Of course, this is very rare, especially as starflower oil benefits the body with very few adverse effects, but it’s vital that you’re prepared for any scenario, especially as it can affect how you look after your body.

Looking after your body is more than just taking supplements, though - it’s about finding the right healthy balance. We’ve compiled a comprehensive guide to building healthy habits that are not only effective, but sustainable, too.

Frequently Asked Questions

Now that we’ve addressed all of the starflower oil benefits (and side effects), it’s natural that you might have a few questions. While we’ve already answered the question of just “what are the benefits of starflower oil”, let’s explore some of the more practical questions you might need answers to.

How Much Starflower Oil Should I Take?

While it can be tempting to take multiple capsules per day to try and experience the health benefits of starflower oil, it is absolutely vital to adhere to the recommended dosage, especially as taking more can worsen any side effects of starflower oil you might experience.

With many products available on the market, their recommended dosage is one tablet each day. This can be taken either in the morning or the evening, although we would suggest taking it as part of your morning routine, as you can combine it with the health benefits of black coffee and a nutritious breakfast.

This capsule will usually be between 1000mg and 1500mg, but the advice will always remain consistent. Each capsule will contain enough GLA and LA to fully reap all the starflower oil benefits we’ve explored, as well as providing you with a substantial boost to your energy levels.

However, we would strongly recommend completely stopping taking this supplement if you begin to experience significant discomfort. While the side effects of starflower oil are minimal, it’s still important to be safe, and stop immediately should you experience any adverse effects.

Where Can I Buy Starflower Oil?

Now that we’ve covered the wide range of starflower oil benefits and side effects you should be aware of, let’s turn our attention to how you can get it. And, while it’s made of what sounds like an exotic plant, it’s surprisingly easy to find.

Though it’s not available as part of a prescription, there are numerous budget-friendly options available, and its widespread popularity and availability means you won’t have to shop around to find it.

Many popular high street retailers (such as Boots, or Holland & Barrett) will have a significant stock of this superb supplement, especially given the well-documented health benefits of starflower oil for women and men.

Alternatively, you can shop online for your starflower oil supplements - we’ve sourced a fantastic option available on Amazon, which offers exceptional value, as well as the convenience of it arriving right to your door. 

Ultimately, however you decide to purchase your supplements, you’ll be able to fully experience all of the starflower oil benefits that we’ve discussed, and start to revolutionise your lifestyle.

A great place to start is by establishing your exercise routine - OriGym have compiled a complete list of the best running apps for beginners, so you can have the best possible start.

Before You Go!

Whether you started reading this guide expecting to learn more about starflower benefits for menopause symptoms, or how starflower oil capsules have benefits for a wide variety of lifestyles, we’ve aimed to provide you with everything you need to know if this is the ideal supplement for you.

Understanding the benefits of taking starflower oil is crucial to ensuring you’re using it for the right reasons, and understanding more specific advantages (such how starflower oil benefits you during PMS) all contributes to the completeness of these capsules.

And if you’re inspired by all the benefits of starflower oil, and are seeking to pass on your knowledge to others, then perhaps a career in exercise is your next step.

With thousands of 5 star reviews, OriGym’s flagship personal training diploma provides everything you need to kickstart a successful career as a PT, with 7 days a week expert guidance, free examination resits, a wealth of bespoke training resources, and a custom-built online learning platform.

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References:

  1. Deborah R. Fenlon, Jessica L. Corner, Joanne S. Haviland, A Randomized Controlled Trial of Relaxation Training to Reduce Hot Flashes in Women with Primary Breast Cancer, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, Volume 35, Issue 4, 2008, Pages 397-405, ISSN 0885-3924, 
  2. a Costa Hime, Lúcia de Fátima Cahino MD1,2; Carvalho Lopes, Ceci Mendes MD, PhD3; Roa, Cristiane Lima MD3; Zuchelo, Lea Tami Suzuki PhD3; Baracat, Edmund C. MD, PhD3; de Andrade, Januário PhD1,4; Soares, José Maria Jr MD, PhD4 Is there a beneficial effect of gamma-linolenic acid supplementation on body fat in postmenopausal hypertensive women? A prospective randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial, Menopause: June 2021 - Volume 28 - Issue 6 - p 699-705, 
  3. Zurier, R.B., Rossetti, R.G., Jacobson, E.W., Demarco, D.M., Liu, N.Y., Temming, J.E., White, B.M. and Laposata, M. (1996), Gamma-linolenic acid treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. A randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Arthritis & Rheumatism, 39: 1808-1817. 
  4. G.C. Leng, A.J. Lee, F.G.R. Fowkes, R.G. Jepson, G.D.O. Lowe, E.R. Skinner, B.F. Mowat, Randomized controlled trial of gamma-linolenic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid in peripheral arterial disease, Clinical Nutrition, Volume 17, Issue 6, 1998, Pages 265-271, ISSN 0261-5614 
  5. Khattab HAH, Abdallah IZA, Yousef FM, Huwait EA. Efficiency Of Borage Seeds Oil Against Gamma Irradiation-induced Hepatotoxicity In Male Rats: Possible Antioxidant Activity. Afr J Tradit Complement Altern Med. 2017 Jun 5;14(4):169-179. doi: 10.21010/ajtcam.v14i4.20. PMID: 28638880; PMCID: PMC5471464.

Written by Chris Allsobrook

Editor

Chris is a former English teacher, turned content editor. He holds a first-class honours degree in English Language and Creative Writing from the University of Central Lancashire, before going on to complete his teacher training, and obtain a PGCE at Liverpool John Moore’s.

Chris is a keen runner and is currently undertaking both his fitness instructing and personal training qualifications here at OriGym. 

Outside of fitness, you’ll often find him gaming, watching the football, cooking, or spending time with his family.

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