Ingredient Spotlight: Sea Buckthorn
Ever heard of sea buckthorn? Sounds a bit like a spooky plant that grows deep underwater, or a dark potion out of a Harry Potter book, doesn’t it? Well, read on, because Sea Buckthorn is having a moment.
I first discovered sea buckthorn at Expo West way back in 2011, just as I was developing my formula for our Essential Serum. Its eye-popping orange berries lured me in and when I discovered it was grown in Nordic countries, I was even more captivated (being a good Scandinavian girl and all).
I learned that Sea buckthorn is actually a spiky, hard-to-harvest bush filled with berries found in Europe and some Asian countries. Which is why it’s also known as seaberry (even though it doesn’t grow in the sea at all). The berries are slightly bigger than a huckleberry and smaller than a blueberry.
One of the reasons we use the oil extracted from sea buckthorn berries is because it has an astonishing amount of Vitamin C, which is widely recognized as a powerful antioxidant. In fact, the Vitamin C content can be up to 9x higher when compared to other citrus fruits. Another nickname for them is “Lemon of the North.”
The berries’ deep, bright orange color is a clue that they’re also rich in carotenoids, which produce Vitamin A. Sea buckthorn is packed with other essential minerals and vitamins, making it a buzzy new superfood, but its star component is Vitamin C.
The other reason we use organic sea buckthorn extract is because of their hydrating properties for your skin, helping to give the appearance of a radiant, glowing complexion.
What really sold me was the fact the berries are available organically and meet my core philosophy that any ingredient I use should be good for you inside and out.
Speaking of your inside, Sea buckthorn berries are not the kind of berries you want to eat by the handful or spoon on top of a cobbler. Though they’re edible and nutritious, they’re also astringent, sour, and oily (remember the lemon nickname?), not very pleasant to eat raw.
However, you can use the juice by mixing it with sweeter juices such as apple or grape, perhaps adding a bit to sparkling water (ratio 1:6). Try a bit in your salad dressing or add it to a curry sauce. It makes a super nutritious addition to smoothies.
There’s also sea buckthorn caffeine-free tea available, such as Klio Certified Organic Leaf Tea, which is made from the leaves of the bush.
Organic seaberry juice can be ordered through Amazon (e.g. Genesis Today Organic Oil), while juice extract can be found at SIBU.com
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