The tamanu tree is indigenous to tropical Southeastern Asia. It is found in Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, South India, Sri Lanka, the Melanesian and Polynesian islands, and Madagascar.
The tree grows to 25 or 30 meters in height. Its branches are covered with shiny, oval dark green leaves, and it blooms twice a year. White flowers, with a delightful sweet fragrance, turn into clusters of yellow-skinned spherical fruit the size of an apricot, with thin flesh and a large nut hull inside. After the kernel dries it yields a luxurious greenish-yellow oil, similar to olive oil, with a rich, pleasant smell. The oil is squeezed from the dark kernels with a simple screw press.
The tamanu tree was believed to be a sacred gift of nature, and gods were said to hide in its branches. Its oil protected the skin from hot sun, high humidity and ocean winds and was revered as ‘the Green Gold of beauty oils’. Since the 1920s it has been studied by researchers in Europe, Asia and the Pacific Islands, and the results of this research are impressive.
TAMANU’S HEALING POWERS
Some in the industry call it ‘a divine indulgence for the skin’. Tamanu oil helps clear up acne, hydrates dry skin, and has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce the swelling of rashes, insect bites and sunburn. It can be applied to cuts, scrapes, stings, abrasions, psoriasis, rosacea, age spots, itching, blisters, ringworm, athlete’s foot, eczema, herpes sores, and over areas affected by arthritis or gout, and can be used to prevent nappy rash and skin eruptions in babies, to help heal pulled muscles, sprains or damaged ligaments, and to reduce foot and body odour. It has a unique capacity to promote the formation of new skin tissue, and actually heals by speeding up the growth of healthy skin.
Unadulterated tamanu oil is the perfect anti-ageing ingredient. Its silky texture soothes and softens, and it has antioxidant, restorative and antibacterial properties. The combination of the oil’s anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antimicrobial qualities can be particularly beneficial in cases of neuralgia, sciatica, shingles and rheumatism. It encourages cell regeneration, helping to diminish scars and unsightly stretch marks, and can transform dull, blemished skin to a radiant, smooth, and glowing appearance. With chronic conditions such as psoriasis you need to apply the oil for several weeks before you will notice a gradual healing. Tamanu oil is a wonderful natural botanical health product. Try it – you will not be disappointed!
As with any product applied to body surfaces, make sure to test the oil on a small area of your skin first, particularly if you happen to be allergic to nuts or have a known allergy of any kind.
A potent healing agent with proven benefits, it won’t be long before tamanu oil finds its place in the market. It is likely to win the hearts of professionals and consumers alike!