Study suggests using black mulberry to naturally treat acne

Acne happens to so many people, it’s often considered a normal part of adolescence. However, there are cases when acne simply cannot be ignored. According to a study, black mulberry, with its antibacterial and antioxidant activity, could be a potential natural and effective treatment for acne.

In the study, black mulberry (Morus nigra) was proven effective against Staphylococcus epidermidis and Propionibacterium acnes. Both of these bacterial species are commonly found in the skin and are linked to various skin conditions.

Further analysis revealed that black mulberry has a considerable antioxidant activity which, paired with its antibacterial effect, makes it a potentially effective ingredient in anti-acne products.

The study was published in the Pharmacognosy Journal.

Anthocyanins and beautiful skin

Black mulberries get their distinctly dark hue from natural compounds called anthocyanins. Like other phenolic compounds, anthocyanins act as powerful antioxidants. They fight free radicals – molecules that accumulate in the body and damage the cells.

Here are some of the ways anthocyanins and other antioxidants help keep your skin healthy:

  • They help enhance your immune system – In general, antioxidants boost your immunity from common diseases. These include infections that affect the skin, such as acne.
  • They prevent chronic inflammation – Inflammation is a natural part of your immune response. It performs an important function in small doses but can be harmful once it gets prolonged. Acne itself is made worse by inflammation. Antioxidants are anti-inflammatory in that they promote proper immune function — preventing abnormalities such as chronic inflammation — while protecting you from common environmental threats.
  • They encourage cell renewal – Besides neutralizing the damage caused by free radicals, antioxidants also encourage the development of new and healthy skin cells. This is actually one of the mechanisms behind the anti-aging effects of antioxidants. Maintaining a healthy intake of antioxidants is, therefore, linked to having glowing and youthful skin.
  • They slow down aging – The accumulation of free radicals stress out the mitochondria (the cell’s powerhouse) in your skin cells, aggravating and speeding up the aging process. By reducing the concentration of free radicals in your skin, antioxidants give your cells some form of respite, protecting you from premature aging.
  • They protect you from UV damage – Anthocyanins, in particular, are known to protect your skin from harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun. UV rays cause an increase in free radicals which, again, antioxidants neutralize effectively.
  • They help prevent skin cancer – By protecting your skin from UV radiation, anthocyanins reduce your risk of developing skin cancer. Many cases of skin cancer are linked to excessive sun exposure and UV damage.

Other health benefits of black mulberries

Among mulberries, the most commonly consumed species are Morus australis and Morus nigra. Like all berries, they are packed in various nutrients. They are good sources of dietary fiber and minerals like iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and phosphorus.

Their many health benefits include:

  • Efficient digestion – A serving of mulberries provides about 10 percent of your requirement for dietary fiber. This particular nutrient aids in digestion by enabling the swift passage of stool along your intestinal tract and preventing common problems like bloating, cramping, and constipation.
  • Good circulation – Iron is an important component in your blood. The iron in mulberries helps maintain the production of red blood cells that carry oxygen to the different parts of your body and help keep your organs healthy.
  • Low blood pressure – Mulberries contain the compound resveratrol, which helps relax your blood vessels by increasing the production of the vasodilator nitric oxide. Relaxed blood vessels allow for smooth and fast blood flow and are conducive to maintaining normal blood pressure.
  • Better vision – Red mulberries are especially rich in zeaxanthin, an antioxidant that is also abundant in the macula, located in your eyes’ retina. Zeaxanthin is linked to a lower risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration, two of the leading causes of blindness worldwide.
  • Strong bones – The combination of calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium – all found in mulberries – are essential for the development of formidable bone tissue. Aside from speeding up the creation of new bones, these nutrients also aid in healing damaged bones and reversing the development of age-related conditions, such as osteoporosis.
  • Protection from cancer – Free radicals are linked to an increased risk of developing cancer. By neutralizing the effects of free radicals, the antioxidants in mulberries protect you not just from skin cancer, but also from cancer that may affect other organs in your body.

Discover the many wonderful benefits of mulberries at

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