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Centella Asiatica: Gifted by Nature

Have you ever heard of a plant that could actually calm your skin and give it a healthy glow, all by using the properties it was gifted by nature? That plant is real! And it is known by the scientific name, Centella asiatica.

Centella asiatica, which is also known as, Gotu Kola is a plant with medicinal properties that has been used for many years in folk medicine and in medical science. In Asian traditional medicine, Centella asiatica has been used especially for skin care. It was used, for instance, to combat inflammation and to heal small wounds, burns and scratches.

It can also be used as a diuretic, antiviral and antibacterial agent or for improving cognition, treating vein insufficiency and even for relieving anxiety. [1]

Gifts from Nature

The natural constituents of Centella asiatica are what make it such a wondrous plant for skin care.

According to the latest research, Centella asiatica has anti-oxidant, collagen boosting, anti-photo aging, and anti-inflammatory actions. It also helps with new blood vessel formation and the maintenance of the existing blood vessels. All of these benefits can help you get the skin you have always dreamed of! [2] 

 

Anti-oxidant properties

Aging is an unavoidable part of life that results from changes that make our bodies vulnerable to damage and disease. This can have dire consequences for our skins.

Studies have shown that Centella asiatica has potent anti-oxidant properties and, therefore, it may even help to slow down the aging process which makes it ideal for natural skin care! [2] 

Collagen boosting effects

Collagen is a key protein in the skin’s inner layer (the dermis). It increases elasticity and reduces wrinkles and cellulite. But sadly, our body’s collagen production naturally begins to slow down as we age. We can connect this degenerative process with the signs of aging such as wrinkles, dry skin (xerosis) and even sagging skin.

Centella asiatica protects existing collagen and it also helps with the creation of new collagen which helps to rejuvenate your skin. [1][4] 

Anti-photoaging Agent

Photoaging is the premature aging of the skin caused by repeated exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UV) primarily from the sun but also from artificial UV sources. Photoaging differs from chronological aging: the damaging effects of UV rays – from the sun or artificial tanning sources – alter normal skin structures. [7]

Research has indicated that Centella asiatica can be used to treat photo-aging skin. This is largely due to the enhancing effect that it has on collagen. [1][3]

Anti-inflammatory actions

Inflammation is an essential response of the body to infection or injury. When the tissues of the body are damaged, the blood-flow to the site of damage increases leading to redness, heat, pain and swelling.

Some constituents of Centella asiatica have been shown to actually halter the process of inflammation to prevent the skin from becoming overly red and swollen. [5] 

Formation of new blood vessels

The formation of new blood vessels plays a vital part in wound-healing. It helps with the transport of oxygen to damaged sites in the skin and Centella asiatica has been shown to promote the formation of new blood vessels. [6]

With the formation of new blood vessels, more oxygen can reach damaged skin cells to revitalize them.

What a gifted plant!

With all these benefits for skin care, you can certainly say that Centella asiatica was in front of the line when beauty gifts were handed out! 

 

 

References:

  1. Bylka W, Znajdek-Awiżeń P, Studzińska-Sroka E, Brzezińska M. Centella asiatica in cosmetology. Advances in Dermatology and Allergology/Postȩpy Dermatologii I Alergologii. 2013 Feb;30(1):46.
  2.  Pittella F, Dutra RC, Junior DD, Lopes MT, Barbosa NR. Antioxidant and cytotoxic activities of Centella asiatica (L) Urb. International journal of molecular sciences. 2009 Aug 26;10(9):3713-21.
  3.  Haftek M, Mac‐Mary S, Bitoux MA, Creidi P, Seité S, Rougier A, Humbert P. Clinical, biometric and structural evaluation of the long‐term effects of a topical treatment with ascorbic acid and madecassoside in photoaged human skin. Experimental dermatology. 2008 Nov 1;17(11):946-52.
  4.  Brinkhaus B, Lindner M, Schuppan D, Hahn EG. Chemical, pharmacological and clinical profile of the East Asian medical plant Centella aslatica. Phytomedicine. 2000 Oct 1;7(5):427-48.
  5. George M, Joseph L. Anti-allergic, anti-pruritic, and anti-inflammatory activities of Centella asiatica extracts. African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines. 2009;6(4).
  6.  Shukla A, Rasik AM, Jain GK, Shankar R, Kulshrestha DK, Dhawan BN. In vitro and in vivo wound healing activity of asiaticoside isolated from Centella asiatica. Journal of ethnopharmacology. 1999 Apr 1;65(1):1-1.
  7. Photoaging, Canadian Dermatology Association