Argan Oil in the DietIn Morocco, argan oil kernels are lightly roasted and then ground to extract the oil for use in cooking and eating. It's used for making couscous and other dishes and made into Amlou paste with honey. Amlou is spread on bread, and bread is sometimes dipped in the roasted oil. It's also used as a dressing for salad and grilled vegetables. When using argan oil as a food product, it's important to buy it from traditional producers. Industrial grade argan oil is removed from the kernel with solvents and isn't food-grade oil.
Healthy Skin and Hair
The vitamin E in argan oil contributes to healthy skin, and it has essential fatty acids that help collagen in the skin stay firm. Argan oil has anti-inflammatory properties to heal red, irritated skin, and it's gentle enough for the sensitive skin of those suffering from rosacea, eczema and psoriasis. Argan oil doesn't clog pores and can help skin balance its natural oil production. For hair, it locks in moisture and protects against the ultraviolet rays of the sun as well as chemical damage from pollution and chlorine pools.
Skin HealingFree radicals are molecules that can cause damage to the skin. Argan oil is packed with antioxidants that bind with free radicals and neutralize them. Combined with the anti-bacterial properties of the oil, this speeds the healing of dry, cracked or irritated skin. It also increases cell production in both healthy and injured skin. Using argan oil as a night cream keeps moisture in the skin overnight, and using it as a moisturizer provides protection against UV rays because of the high antioxidant content.
Hair NourishmentArgan oil is an amazing product for hair and scalp. It can eliminate dandruff and dry, itchy scalp because of its hydrating and anti-inflammatory properties. The vitamin E and antioxidants are just as beneficial for the skin on your head as they are for the rest of your body. A couple of drops warmed in your hands and spread on hair ends can tame frizziness. It also works great as a deep conditioner when left on overnight, and argan oil stimulates hair growth for people who are experiencing hair loss.
Ingesting argan oil helps prevent heart disease and lowers cholesterol. In one study of rats, argan oil caused lowering of the LDL ("bad") cholesterol by up to 67 percent while leaving the HDL ("good") cholesterol levels unchanged. In Morocco, argan oil has traditionally been used to lessen the effects of diabetes, and recent research has shown that it does lower insulin resistance. Other studies have shown a possible inhibiting effect on prostate cancer.
Home Recipes for Argan Beauty Products
Night CreamPour two drops of argan oil into your palm. Warm it between your hands for a minute, and then rub it gently, in a circular motion, into your face and neck.
Add one drop each of argan oil and tea tree oil to a teaspoon of water. Soak it up with a cotton pad and smooth the pad over your face.
Add two drops of argan oil to a tablespoon of sugar in your palm. Mix well and lightly scrub your face, then rinse with warm water and dry with a soft cloth.
Ingredients and Properties of Argan Oil• Vitamin E
• Essential Fatty Acids
Look for High-Quality Argan Oil
The label on your oil should list argan oil as the only ingredient. It should come in an amber or brown glass bottle because light can break down the beneficial properties. True argan oil has a nutty smell that dissipates soon after you rub it on your skin. The oil should feel smooth to the touch and not watery. It should also be labeled "Made in Morocco" or "100 Percent Pure". Argan oil used for skin and hair should be virgin argan oil from unroasted kernels.