Emu oil

Dr. med. Heinz Lüscher

The oil from the fat reserves of the emus has always been known and loved by the Aborigines in Australia. It has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and even pain-relieving properties and can therefore be used for a wide range of skin problems.

The emu

The emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) is a flightless bird that lives in the wild only in Australia. It looks very similar to an African ostrich, although the two are not related. Besides Australia, the emu is also bred on large farms in North America, Peru and China. Its meat is very low-fat and tasty, and the subcutaneous fat tissue is thicker and richer in fat. When the emu runs, it reaches a speed of 50 km/h, it grows to 180 cm and weighs about 55 kg when fully grown. About 700 000 animals still live in Australia. The diet consists of grass, seeds, berries, fruits, herbs and insects, young animals also eat meat.

How to extract Emu Oil?

The oil is extracted from the fat reserves on the back of the emus. The oil is then refined and sterilised. I recommend buying naturally refined emu oil, even if it is a little more expensive. Also the species-appropriate keeping of the animals as well as their nutrition has an influence on the quality of the oil.

Ingredients of emu oil

Emu oil consists of 100 percent fat (fatty acids). It is rich in saturated (36%), as well as monounsaturated (57%) and polyunsaturated (7%) fatty acids. These include oleic acid, palmitic acid, stearic acid, linoleic acid, palmitoleic acid, elaidic acid, linolenic acid and myristic acid. Of these, 0.6% are omega-3 fatty acids and 6.1% omega-6 fatty acids.

Emu oil and its properties in the skin

Emu oil is a traditional healing and foodstuff of the Aborigines in Australia. However, here we will only deal with the external use of the oil. The Aborigines have known the positive effects of emu oil on the skin for centuries. They use it for all kinds of skin injuries, such as wounds, burns and insect bites, but also for (inflammatory) skin diseases and rashes, as well as muscle or joint pain. Emu oil is very well tolerated and penetrates very quickly through the upper layers of the skin. It could therefore become an interesting carrier substance for the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industry. It has moisturising, nourishing, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-ageing properties. Emu oil is not comedogenic, which means that it does not "clog" the pores like many other topical products. The oil has a positive influence on the health of epithelial cells, contributes to the structure of cell walls and improves cell function.

Properties of Emu Oil

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antibacterial
  • Analgesic
  • Moisturising
  • Rapidly penetrates deeper skin layers
  • Epithelising (promotes wound healing)

All these positive effects mean that it can be used very well for a wide range of skin problems.

Emu oil can be used for the following diseases or situations:

  • muscle and joint pain
  • Arthritis
  • Soft Tissue Rheumatism
  • Inflammation of tendons
  • Sports injuries (pulled muscles, bruises, sprains)
  • Excavations
  • Mild burns (1st / 2nd degree)
  • Cuts
  • Smaller, superficial wounds
  • Scar Care
  • Neurodermatitis
  • Psoriasis
  • Sunburn
  • Eczema
  • Acne
  • Rosacea
  • Nappy dermatitis
  • Insect bites
  • Haemorrhoids
  • Stretch marks after pregnancy (or prevention)
  • Aging skin
  • Dry, sensitive skin

Recommended use of Emu Oil

The oil is gently applied and rubbed into the affected skin areas several times a day.