Celastrus Oil

Jul 20, 2012 by

Celastrus OilAs something that was previously unknown to most people, celastrus oil has started to come into its own, is receiving more and more attention for the results of early pre-clinical trials on its abilities to sharpen the mind and preserve memory — results which can only be described as extraordinary. Native to India, celastrus has long been used in Ayurvedic medicine, and only recently has the Western world begun to take note of its many remarkable properties and abilities. This article, then, is to help familiarize you with Celastrus paniculata oil and some of the incredible things that have recently been discovered about it.

The oil in question is derived from the seeds of the celastrus Paniculata plant, which grows only in India, and sometimes reaches heights of 2,000 meters. Celastrus oil contains two alkaloids, Celastrine and Paniculatin, which are believed to be responsible for the beneficial effects.

In the past fifteen years or so, research has been done that shows celastrus oil to have some rather startling effects, particularly on cognition and memory. For example, one study focused on using the contents of norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin in the brain to gauge the effect of celastrus oil on learning and memory. Rats were given scopolamine, a deliriant hallucinogen (and one of the active ingredients in plants such as Belladonna and Datura), and then put in a maze. They were then given celastrus seed oil, and what occurred is remarkable — the celastrus seemed to totally cancel out the scopolamine-induced impairment, allowing the rats to quickly solve the maze! Furthermore, celastrus oil has been shown to have no neurotoxicity. The study showed that celastrus oil improves not only memory but the learning process and cognition in general. It showed “significant improvement” in the memory and cognition of the rats that had been given celastrus oil, versus the control group. In fact, according to a report on the study, the celastrus paniculata oil “completely reversed the scopolamine-induced task performance deficit.” That’s quite a feat, wouldn’t you say?

And that’s not all. In a test meant to mimic the neuronal degradation found in Alzheimer’s patients, a water-soluble extract of celastrus oil “significantly attenuated” the death of brain cells in rats. I probably don’t have to explain to you the implications of this finding — celastrus oil could well be a significant ally in protecting the brain into and during old age, helping to ward off everything from Alzheimer’s to dementia. Indeed, for centuries, if not longer, humans have looked, almost always in vain, for a plant that would allow them to stay as sharp as tacks, no matter how old they became. Ginkgo biloba provided a little boost, but nothing more. celastrus, however, appears to be just what we’ve all been seeking for quite some time.

Celastrus flowers and whole plants, extracted via absolute methanol, also showed great potential as an anti inflammatory and analgesic agent. In one trial, celastrus demonstrated a greater anti inflammatory power than even the legendary ibuprofen. (And, thus far, users of celastrus have reported no side effects whatsoever, which is certainly more than can be said for ibuprofen, which, among other things, can be quite hard on the liver. In fact, thousands of people a year report negative side effects from taking ibuprofen.) It would seem that there’s very little this remarkable plant can’t do.

And yes, there’s more — the methanolic extract of celastrus showed a dose-dependent free-radical scavenging ability, and a protective effect on DNA in human cells. Additionally, aqueous extracts of celastrus seeds “significantly attenuated hydrogen peroxide-induced neuronal death.” In layman’s terms, this means that the celastrus extract inhibited the death of brain cells.

Celastrus oil was also found to possess anti-arthritic properties; it markedly reduced arthritis-induced swelling in the paws of albino rats. In addition to all of these properties, celastrus oil has also been found to exhibit wound-healing, antibacterial, and even anti-malarial properties.

Given the incredible things that have been discovered about Celastrus paniculata oil, it’s no wonder that it is now receiving so much attention. And much of this attention includes new original research, much of which confirms what is already believed about celastrus — that it is a potent memory aid, cognition enhancer, and mood stabilizer. One recent study, published in early 2012, found an Ayurvedic preparation, of which celastrus comprised a large part, to be just as effective as imipramine and sertraline in the treatment of patients with mild-to-moderate depression. It would now seem that celastrus oil may be the next Ginkgo biloba, only, even more effective. Indeed, after years of research, the consensus in the scientific community seems to be that Ginkgo sometimes is effective, other times, not so. Celastrus, however, already has an almost spotless track record when it comes to pre-clinical trials studying its effects on cognition and memory.

With the extraordinary possibilities and potentials of celastrus oil clearly established by the world scientific community, it is certain that more significant discoveries regarding this plant await us.

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