Did your mother tell you to eat your carrots because they were good for your eyesight? If she did, she was right, as carrots are a good source of vitamin A, which is key for eye health. More recent research has identified carrots as protective against cardiovascular disease, as well.
In skin care, however, we’re most excited not about the carrot itself, but the seed! Like other seed oils, carrot seed oil has several skin benefits, including the ability to rejuvenate dry, mature, and wrinkled skin.
A Little Bit About the Ingredient Itself
Carrot seed oil is the essential oil extract from the seed of the carrot plant (Daucus carota). Also known as “Queen Anne’s Lace,” this plant is an annual or biennial herb with hairy leaves and umbrella-shaped white lacy flowers with purple centers. We may be most used to the orange carrot here in the U.S., but there are other varieties as well, which produce purple, yellow, white, and red carrots. In fact, it was these other varieties that were originally cultivated in central Asia and Middle-Eastern countries.
Scientific researchers have been interested in carrots for many years because of their carotenoid content. Beta-carotene is a powerful antioxidant, and one cup of carrots will provide over 400 percent of your daily value. Carrots are also good sources of vitamin K, fiber, and vitamin C.
In a 10-year study out of the Netherlands, participants who ate at least 25 grams of carrots a day (less than one-quarter cup) had a significantly lower risk of cardiovascular disease, with risk going down further for those who ate more. (The study didn’t state if the benefits would be the same from the intake of carrot juice, but it’s likely they would as long as the juice was made from raw carrots.)
Other research has focused on certain phytonutrients in carrots that have shown promise in inhibiting the growth of cancer cells. In laboratory studies, carrot extracts slowed the growth of colon cancer cells. Considering the high-fiber content of carrots, which would also benefit the colon, we may soon hear that this vegetable is a significant dietary addition for protecting colon health.
Benefits to the Skin
Because carrot seed oil is high in antioxidants, it’s a natural for any anti-aging skin formula. These components can help protect your skin from environmental assaults like UV rays, pollution, and stress. In fact, carrot seed oil may be added to your sunscreen formula because it is reputed to protect from free radicals produced by UV radiation. Carotenoids, in particular, have been found to enhance the body’s immune response to UV rays, which can decrease skin damage from UV exposure.
What’s magical about carrot seed oil, however, is its ability to rejuvenate skin. Scientists think this has something to do with the “carotol,” a primary component found in carrot seed oil. The oil also has moisturizing vitamin E and protective vitamin C, which work together to help encourage healing and to rejuvenate skin cells and bring new life to skin. In fact, carrot seed oil has a reputation for helping to heal eczema, psoriasis, and dermatitis because of its ability to stimulate cell growth and repair damaged skin.
It is also this ability that makes carrot seed oil a great anti-aging ingredient, as well. Rejuvenating skin cells and encouraging new growth is at the center of combating the appearance of aging. The high carotol content has also made the oil a good option for treating wounds and skin infections.
If you have dry or oily skin, you don’t have to worry—like many natural oils, carrot seed oil has the ability to balance both! It gives skin just enough moisture without clogging pores, making it perfect for all skin types.
In fact, anyone with dull, lifeless skin should definitely look for carrot seed oil in their skin care products. It’s abilities to rejuvenate, heal, and protect will have you looking more lively in no time.
You’ll find carrot seed oil in five of my primary products!
- Anti-Aging Serum
- Anti-Aging Facial Oil
- Anti-Aging Eye Cream
- Herbal Facial Oil for Normal and Combination Skin
- Herbal Facial Oil for Oily and Acne Prone Skin
Have you tried carrot seed oil on your skin? How else do you use it?
* * *
Photo courtesy jen d. cox via Flickr.com.
“Carrots,” WHFoods, http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=21.
Tags: annmarie gianni skin care, anti aging skin care, beta-carotene, carrot seed oil, dermatitis, eczema, moisturizer, Natural Skin Care, organic skin care, psoriasis, rejuvenate skin, skin damage, skin infections, UV rays, Vitamin C, vitamin E, wounds