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The Powerful Health and Beauty Benefits of Neem
Also known as Indian Lilac, the neem tree is an evergreen native to India. Neem is an integral part of Ayurveda, the ancient, traditional, Indian healing system. This blog talks all about the health and beauty benefits of neem to let you know why you would want to add this botanic to your life.
Native to the Indian sub-continent, neem typically grows in tropical and semi-tropical regions. The neem tree has been revered for its medicinal properties for over 4000 years. Neem is described as ‘one that prevents all ailments’ by the Vedas, which are the spiritual literature of the ancient Indian culture.
Hailed for its healing benefits, for both health and beauty, various parts of the neem tree have been used for its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiparasitic, antifungal and anticancer properties (although it’s important to note that taking neem would only a small part of a cancer treatment and only under the provision of a Doctor to help support treatment).
Keep reading to find out how the all-powerful and mighty neem could benefit you.
Neem for Beauty
Women have used neem for its beauty benefits for thousands of years – it has been an ancient, traditional Indian beauty secret.
Supports Acne-prone Skin
Neem’s antibacterial properties destroy acne-causing bacteria, making it a great option for preventing acne breakouts. It’s important to note that all individual skin is different, and what works for someone else may not work for you. Not only does the herb help to prevent and treat acne, but its essential fatty acids treat acne scars too.
Dilute 2 – 3 drops of neem oil with water and apply this to blackheads each day. This will help get rid of and prevent blackheads in the future.
- Moisturises Dry Skin
Neem is known for its incredible moisturising properties. But it’s also balancing at the same time, meaning it will help to moisturise dry skin without making it too oily causing breakouts. Use neem oil as a moisturiser or serum for a few weeks and see how your individual skin type reacts to it.
- Helps Treat Under-Eye Dark Circles
Use neem oil to very gently massage the skin below and around the eyes. As neem helps in reducing pigmentation, it can help in the treatment of dark circles. A little massage will also help de-puff the eyes.
- Slows Down Aging
We all know that aging is a natural part of life, but we can slow down the deterioration and breakdown of collagen by using neem to regenerate the skin and help it to fight pathogens below the surface. Massage in diluted neem oil to allow the skin to absorb this revitalising oil to keep it healthy and supple.
- Relieves Itchy, Dry Scalp
Neem is known to treat dandruff whilst relieving dry, itchy scalp. You can use neem to improve scalp health as it’s incredibly moisturising and conditioning. You can massage neem oil into the scalp before shampooing thoroughly. A nourished, healthy scalp means hair that grows stronger and shinier.
- Provides Deep Conditioning for the Hair
You can condition dry and frizzy hair with neem to make it smoother and lustrous. You can apply the oil to your hair and let neem work its magic, then shampoo your hair. Alternatively, you can rub the oil into the ends after shampooing as a leave-in conditioning treatment.
- Helps Treat Psoriasis
Dryness and scaling are two symptoms of psoriasis that can be treated with neem oil. Many people have reported their symptoms improving with the nourishing effects of neem. The oil also has antibacterial properties that prevents the development of any further skin infections such as eczema.
Neem for Health
The bark, leaves and seeds have been used to make medicine for thousands of years. Here are some of the ways modern day science confirming the benefits that the ancient Indians knew all along.
- May Increase Immunity
Neem is often recommended by Ayurveda experts to boost immunity. It’s thought to kill off harmful infections and help increase the body’s ability to fight off infections.
- May Help Keep the Gastrointestinal Tract Healthy
By reducing inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract, neem may reduce ulcers, constipation, bloating and cramping. It may also help prevent stomach infection and improve the overall process of digestion and elimination.
- May supports the Body’s Natural Ability to Detox Itself
Neem stimulates the liver and kidneys to result in expulsion of toxicity.
- May Maintain Healthy Blood Sugar Levels
The chemical components of neem are known to optimise insulin receptor functioning. Neem may also help diabetics become less dependent on insulin, however, taking neem for anything should always be discussed with a doctor first, and should not replace any other treatment they have advised.
- May Maintain Oral Health
The anti-bacterial properties of neem are why this herb is a part of many oral health products. Neem can help to remove the bacteria that cause periodontal diseases and bad breath.
- May Help with the Treatment of Skin Diseases
Neem’s anti-inflammatory properties makes it ideal for skin diseases as it calm down redness and irritation. This includes acne, ringworm, eczema and warts. As mentioned earlier, it can be helpful in the treatment of psoriasis. Whilst there is no cure for psoriasis, neem oil may reduce some of the symptoms when a high-quality, organic oil is applied.
Written by Jess Burman
BA (Honours) Writing