SHEA BUTTER Overview Information
Shea butter is a seed fat that comes from the shea tree. The shea tree is found in East and West tropical Africa. The shea butter comes from two oily kernels within the shea tree seed. After the kernel is removed from the seed, it is ground into a powder and boiled in water. The butter then rises to the top of the water and becomes solid.
People apply shea butter to the skin for acne, arthritis, burns, dandruff, inflamed skin, dry skin, eczema, insect bites, itch, muscle soreness, scaly and itchy skin (psoriasis), rash, a skin infection caused by mites (scabies), scars, sinus infection, skin breakages, stretch marks, wound healing, and wrinkled skin.
In foods, shea butter is used as a fat for cooking.
In manufacturing, shea butter is used in cosmetic products.
How does it work?
Shea butter works like an emollient. It might help soften or smooth dry skin. Shea butter also contains substances that can reduce skin swelling. This might help treat conditions associated with skin swelling such as eczema.
- Hayfever caused by ragweed. Early research suggests that applying shea butter to the inside of the nose as needed over 4 days clears the airways and improves breathing in adults and children who have congestion from hayfever. The airways appear to clear in as quickly as 30 seconds. The effect seems to last for up to 8.5 hours. Shea butter appears to improve congestion as effectively as certain nasal decongestant drops.
- Inflamed skin.
- Dry skin.
- Insect bites.
- Muscle soreness.
- Scaly, itchy skin (psoriasis).
- A skin infection caused by mites (scabies).
- Sinus infection.
- Skin ulcers.
- Stretch marks.
- Wound healing.
- Wrinkled skin.
- Other conditions.
SHEA BUTTER Side Effects & Safety
Shea butter is LIKELY SAFE when taken by mouth in amounts commonly found in foods.
Shea butter is POSSIBLY SAFE when applied to the skin appropriately, short-term. About 2-4 grams of shea butter has been applied to the inside of the nose safely for up to 4 days.
There isn't enough reliable information available to know if using shea butter long-term is safe.
Special Precautions & Warnings:Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Shea butter is LIKELY SAFE when taken by mouth in amounts commonly found in foods. There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking shea butter in greater amounts if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Children: Shea butter is LIKELY SAFE when taken by mouth in amounts commonly found in foods. Shea butter is POSSIBLY SAFE when applied to the skin appropriately, short-term. About 2-4 grams of shea butter has been applied to the inside of the nose safely for up to 4 days.
SHEA BUTTER Dosing
The appropriate dose of shea butter depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for shea butter (in children/in adults). Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.