There has been so much hype about Nerium Oleander lately that I figured it was time to investigate and research the ingredient formulation. Several of my clients and friends have asked me about my professional opinion…… so here it is.
Nerium Oleander is a bright beautiful flowering shrub that may be pretty in your garden, but lets leave this extremely poisonous plant there!
What is Nerium Oleander?
Nerium oleander /ˈnɪəriəm ˈoʊliː.ændər/ is an evergreen shrub or small tree in the dogbane family Apocynaceae, toxic in all its parts. It is the only species currently classified in the genus Nerium. It is most commonly known as oleander, from its superficial resemblance to the unrelated olive Olea. It is so widely cultivated that no precise region of origin has been identified, though southwest Asia has been suggested. Oleander is one of the most poisonous of commonly grown garden plants.
Is Nerium Oleander Toxic?
Oleander extracts in “controlled doses” are in the early stages of testing to see if its effective in treating cancer. The National and American Cancer Institutes have done test tube studies of Anvirzel (oleander extract) that appeared to slow the growth of human bladder cancer cells. But the “carefully dosed” people with cancer did not show that the oleander extract helped them. And after many attempts, it was not approved by the FDA. In fact, Oleander Leaf is on Germany’s regulatory agency list of unapproved herbs because it has yet been proven to be either safe or effective.
Does Nerium Oleander work for Anti Aging?
Wikipedia cites studies in which “a nerium oleander extract was applied to the skin of people with different dermal conditions, sensitive mass based blood analyses were not able to detect the presence of cardiac glycosides such as oleandrin, indicating that these compounds are not readily absorbed through the skin.” However skin irritation from direct contact with oleander has occurred and allergic reactions are possible. This herb should be avoided, especially by children and by women who are pregnant or breast-feeding.
Another thing that I found interesting about the Nerium Oleander in a topical product is the chronic low-level inflammation that occurs within the skin. Inflammation is typically visible. Signs of inflammation include redness, irritation, bumps and discomfort. Despite the contrary, inflammation can also be invisible. Without the physical indicators, people do not realize their skin is inflamed at all. The low levels of inflammation give the skin a more plumped appearance which is mistaken for the product being effective as an anti-aging product.
Inflammation itself can be very healthy and natural, yet chronic inflammation can be bad for the body. It forces the immune system to function with an inflammatory response level that is much higher than what it was made to handle. The immune system naturally produces free radicals to help bring down inflammation. When it is chronic, the system will constantly be producing the free radicals.
Free radicals will attack healthy cells in search of the electrons which result in changing the cells from healthy to abnormal. Also, when inflammation occurs, the immune system sends white blood cells to help heal. When there is constant swelling, the body puts normal body functions on the back burner. It is trying to focus on producing more cells to get the inflammation under control rather than producing cells to maintain healthy tissues throughout the body.
I feel that if a product has been refused by the FDA on multiple separate entries and for different uses there is probably a warrented reason for the refusal! Please be advised and do your own research before getting caught up in a “too good to be true” miracle ingredient.
*information sourced from the American Cancer Society
*definition sourced from wikipedia
*information sourced from truth in aging