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The Benefits of Topically Applying Flaxseed Oil to Skin

by
author image Ashley Armstrong
Ashley Armstrong has been writing for LIVESTRONG.COM since 2010. She is the group fitness and personal training director for Fitness One in Norman, Oklahoma and is a certified personal trainer and indoor cycling instructor. She is also a Les Mills and Aerobics and Fitness Association of America aerobics instructor. She holds a Master of Science in Education in health and human performance from Baylor University.
The Benefits of Topically Applying Flaxseed Oil to Skin
Flaxseed oil is beneficial for improving skin condition. Photo Credit skin care image by anna karwowska from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Flaxseed, also known as linseed, is a blue flowering plant grown on the western Canadian prairies for its rich oils, according to Essortment.com. Some researchers say flaxseed oil is the most important health-promoting supplement, next to a multi-vitamin. Nearly every system of the body can benefit from its natural properties. It is high in omega-3 fatty acids, necessary for healthy functioning of the heart and immune system, and also helpful in restoring skin health. Flaxseed contains up to 50 percent more omega-3 fatty acids than fish oil supplements, according to Essortment.com. When applied topically, flaxseed oil may be more effective for skin treatment than when taken as a supplement. Keep in mind that flaxseed oil can spoil easily and should be kept in an amber-colored container in the fridge for best results, according to Flaxseed-Oil.net.

Smooths Wrinkles

Skin is made of protein and requires protein to restore its health. The omega-3 protein found in flaxseed oil smooths the appearance of wrinkles by helping to repair skin cells. As a natural cure for wrinkles, rub 1 tbsp. of flaxseed oil on any wrinkles up to four times daily, beginning in the morning when you wake up, suggests EarthClinic.com. You can also break open one flaxseed oil supplement capsule and rub the oil on the affected area. In one study by Donald Rudin, M.D., the skin of those subjects who applied flaxseed oil for one to four months was more "firm and elastic, with improved texture and tone," according to Herbal-Powers.com.

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Treatment of Psoriasis

Flaxseed oil has been used to treat the skin condition psoriasis, in which the skin becomes inflamed and irritated. In the skin of a person with psoriasis, the compounds causing inflammation are much greater than normal, according to Herbal-Powers.com. Psoriasis has been linked to a deficiency in essential fatty acids (EFAs) like omega-3's. Flaxseed oil, applied topically, may provide the EFAs necessary to inhibit the compounds in the body that cause inflammation.

Treatment of Eczema

Eczema is a condition which causes dry, irritated and flaky skin. Epidermal cells can convert the essential fatty acids from flaxseed oil into prostaglandin hormones, which determine the smoothness and moistness of the skin, according to Herbal-Powers.com. This will improve skin texture and overall condition. Flaxseed oil can also help seal moisture into the skin, thus it's a common ingredient in body lotions, sunscreens and other treatments for dry skin.

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