The Health Benefits of Copaiba Oil
Copaiba oil is an extract made from Copaiba tree, and is commonly found in South America. The oil of copaiba has been used for centuries in South American countries to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, kill germs and bacteria, heal wounds, and inhibit tumor growth. Laboratory research supports the use of copaiba oil for some conditions, while only animal studies have been conducted to date. Find out the benefits and side effects of copaiba oil.
What Is Copaiba Oil?
Copaiba oil is known as an oleoresin, and is obtained from the trunks of numerous species of leguminous trees (genus Copaifera). The extract contains a combination of resin and essential oil, and can be used as a varnish or lacquer, in addition to medicinal purposes. The oil consists of hydrocarbons known as terpenes, and always contain carbon atoms in multiples of five. Copaiba extract has commonly been used as a medicine, as well as for spiritual purposes. The Yaviza people of panama were known to give a mixture of copaiba oil and honey to newborn babies in order to ward off negative spirits. The oil has also been used in paint recipes to improve paint adhesion to surfaces such as ceramic or glass.
What Does Copaiba Oil Treat?
There is limited research on the uses of copaiba oil, and no research exists examining the effects of the oil on human populations. The oil has been used for centuries among indigenous cultures as an anti-funal agent, antibacterial agent, as well as to help heal wounds. The oil has also been used to improve digestive health, reduce inflammation, as a mild laxative, to increase urination, to expel worms, to reduce acidity, and expel phlegm.
Does Copaiba Oil Help With Inflammation?
Copaiba oil is used by many as a natural alternative to chemical steroids. Systemic inflammation in the body is believed to be a contributing factor to many diseases, such as arthritis, cancer, and auto-immune conditions. While steroid medications can provide relief from inflammation, the side effects, as well as long term health risks associated with steroids, can be detrimental to your health. Copaiba oil is a natural way to reduce inflammation in the body, and can be applied topically to reduce inflammation on skin and joints.
What Does the Research Say?
A 2009 study from San Paulo State University examined the effects of copaiba oil on inflammation in rats. Researchers induced rat paw edema using doses of carrageenan, and then observed the effects on the condition with treatments of high dilutions of copaiba oil. The study concluded that the dosages of copaiba oil administered were statistically significant in reducing inflammation associated with the edema. Researchers were particularly interested in copaiba oil's ability to reduce inflammation without compromising some of the beneficial actions of inflammation towards healing. More research is needed to pinpoint the active properties in copaiba oil that may be responsible for this phenomenon.
What Are the Side Effects of Copaiba Oil?
Copaiba oil is generally considered safe for most people to take. However, there have been some reported side effects, such as stomach aches, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, groin pain, insomnia, itching, and tremors. If you are pregnant or breast feeding, it is advised not to take copaiba oil. Copaiba oil may be beneficial in reducing inflammation, treating wounds, as well as other health conditions. More research is needed, however, to confirm the oil's healing properties. Speak with your doctor before taking copaiba oil, particularly if you are currently taking medication for any other health condition.