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What is evening primrose oil?

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Evening primrose is a plant that's native to Europe and North America. It has a long history of medicinal uses. For example, Native Americans used its leaves, roots, and seedpods in preparations for hemorrhoids, bruises, wounds, and skin problems.

Evening primrose oil contains an omega-6 essential fatty acid that is necessary for good health. While there is some evidence that evening primrose oil supplements may benefit some health conditions, the study results are mixed.

From: Evening Primrose Oil WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Natural Standard: "Evening Primrose Oil (Oenothera biennis L.)"

Georgetown University Medical Center: "Evening Primrose."

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: "Evening Primrose Oil."

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center: "Evening Primrose Oil."

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database: "Evening Primrose Oil."

Fan, Y-Y. , September 1998. The Journal of Nutrition

Mayo Clinic: "Evening Primrose."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on May 22, 2019

SOURCES:

Natural Standard: "Evening Primrose Oil (Oenothera biennis L.)"

Georgetown University Medical Center: "Evening Primrose."

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: "Evening Primrose Oil."

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center: "Evening Primrose Oil."

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database: "Evening Primrose Oil."

Fan, Y-Y. , September 1998. The Journal of Nutrition

Mayo Clinic: "Evening Primrose."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on May 22, 2019

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Why do people use evening primrose oil?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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