Black Currant leaf Ribes nigrum
The leaves encourage the elimination of fluids that reduces blood volume, and in turn, lowers blood pressure. An infusion can be used to treat rheumatic pain and whooping cough. Black Currant leaves can be used externally on slow-healing cuts and abscesses, and as a gargle for sore throats and mouth ulcers. A decoction of the bark has been used to treat hemorrhoidal tumors. Black Currant seed oil has been used to relieve symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.
Skin Disorders – The anti-inflammatory properties are effective against skin irritations when take orally. The Skin Study Center in Philadelphia found that the Black Currant Seed Oil helps with dry skin disorders. The gamma-linoleic acid (GLA) protects against the water loss that contributes to itching and other symptoms associated with dry skin.
Cardiovascular Disorders – There has been two Canadian studies that have shown the omega-6 fatty acids lowers blood pressure. This is done as the prostaglandins counteract the constriction of blood vessels.
Women’s Health Problems – Since prostaglandin regulates the menstrual cycle it is helpful before and during menstruation. Gamma-linoleic acid produces anti-inflammatory prostaglandins as opposed to inflammatory prostaglandins; this leads to lessening of the severity of premenstrual cramps.
Rheumatoid Arthritis – As an anti-inflammatory agent it works well by decreasing the morning stiffness in the joints. The British Journal of Rhemuatology has stated that it may also be effective because of a “reduction in the secretion of the inflammatory cytokines (a source of inflammation) 11-1 and TNF-alpha.” By preventing their production, the oil offers some relief.