African Botanical Extracts – Volume 5 ~(Article 5 of 6)Magalies Citrus
by Dr. Marli Botha
If you grow roses in your garden, you may get the added benefit of rosehips, a cool-cat fruit that packs a healthy punch! Rosehips typically have a vibrant reddish-orange colour, but in some species hips it can be dark purple or even black. They are tart and reminiscent of a zesty crab-apple in flavour, although not quite as tasty.
Here are 5 more interesting facts about rose canina plants:
- Rumor has it that Rose canina plants were first introduced into South Africa when the British soldiers mixed rosehips with fodder to aid the joint health of their horses.
- Rosehips are particularly high in vitamin C, one of the richest plant sources available. However, RP-HPLC assays of fresh Rosehips and several commercially available products revealed a wide range of L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) content, ranging from 0.03 to 1.3%. Rosehips of some species, especially Rosa canina (dog rose) and Rosa majalis, have been used as a source of vitamin C.
- Rosehips contain the carotenoids beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin and lycopene, which are under basic research for a variety of potential biological roles, such as inhibiting oxidation of low density.
- A meta-analysis of human studies examining the potential for rosehip extracts to reduce arthritis pain concluded there was a small effect requiring further analysis of safety and efficacy in clinical trials.
- Celebrities like the Duchess of Cambridge and Victoria Beckham (amongst a few others), as per reports, use rosehip oil to keep their skin free from blemishes. The oil from the fruit is also good for correcting dark spots and treating dry or itchy skin.
It is important to mention that no food is meant to be a cure-all for any condition, though there are certainly health and skin benefits contained within them. The one thing you should always do before using a new skin care product is to do a patch test to look for allergies and sensitivities. If you suffer from a chronic medical condition, consult your healthcare practitioner before using this product.