Friday, July 3, 2009

Emu oil

The subject of emu oil came up this morning. My Mom has a cosmetic that contains emu oil and I mentioned having seen it for sale when I was at the Ostrich Festival in Chandler, Arizona. Here's the scoop....Emu oil has been used by the indigenous people of Australia for hundreds of years, and can be applied topically or ingested. It is made by rendering the fat of the bird and, because it is bacteriostatic, has a long shelf life and will not irritate the skin. As an emulsifier, it does not clog the pores or leave a greasy residue. Sellers suggest it will relieve the following complaints (see a more comprehensive list here):

  • joint pain
  • arthritis
  • muscle aches
  • heart trouble
  • diabetes
  • prostate problems
  • hardening of the arteries
  • cancer
  • gangrene
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • ulcers
  • infections
  • burns
  • bruises
  • insect bites
  • sunburn
  • windburn
  • dry skin
Although the FDA warns that the many claims made about emu oil - most notably the anecdotal evidence of its anti-inflammatory properties - have not been tested, the emu oil industry assures us that this is no snake oil.

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