Lauric Acid, Myristic Acid and Skin

LAURIC ACID AND SKIN

What is Lauric Acid?

Lauric acid is a saturated fatty acid with a lipid number C12.  Because there are no double bonds in this fatty acid, it can last a long time without going rancid.  In the body lauric acid is converted into a substance called monolaurin.  Monolaurin has antifungal, antiviral, antimicrobial and antiprotozoal properties.  It operates by a mechanism whereby it disrupts the lipid membranes in foreign organisms such as viruses, fungus and bacteria.  While monolaurin kills off these unwanted organisms, it is completely nontoxic to humans and to our normal functioning tissues.

How does Lauric Acid Help Our Skin?

Lauric acid is a great moisturizer for the skin and it can reduce redness and flaking of skin with no adverse side effects.  It is also great for fighting skin infections and its use in fighting acne is being explored.

What Oils are High in Lauric Acid?

Lauric acid is found in high percentages in coconut oil and palm kernel oil, but otherwise is quite uncommon in nature.  The only other place we know it occurs is in mother’s milk, and it comprises 6.2% of human mother’s milk, as opposed to 3% of goat and cow’s milk.  Scientists believe that lauric acid’s presence in milk may be due to its antimicrobial activity.  This may be one way that mothers strengthen their babies immune systems.
coconut
Some of the oils high in Lauric acid include:

  • Coconut oil (48%) Has a shelf life of about 2 yearS
  • Palm kernel oil (48%) Has a shelf life of about 1-2 years

 

MYRISTIC ACID AND SKIN

What is Myristic Acid?

Myrisitic acid is a saturated fatty acid with the lipid number C14.

How does Myristic Acid Help Our Skin?

Myristic acid is easily absorbed by our skin and acts a lubricant and an anti-inflammatory.  It helps repair the skin barrier and increases moisture and hydration.  There is some evidence that myristic acid can help with flaky skin by signaling skin cells when it’s time to stop growing.

What Oils are High in Myristic Acid?

Myristic acid is found in nutmeg, coconuts, palm kernels and in spermacetin, the oil from the sperm whale.
coconut
Some of the oils high in Myristic acid include:

  • Coconut oil (48%) Has a shelf life of about 2 year
  • Palm kernel oil (48%) Has a shelf life of about 1-2 years

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