Tamanu Oil – natural antifungal, natural healing and natural anti-inflammatory
Tamanu Tree – Origin and Description
Tamanu belongs to the botanical family of Guttiferae or Clusiaceae. Calophyllum inophyllum is its botanical name. The genus Calophyllum means beautiful leaf (Greek kalos = beautiful and phullon = leaf).
The tree is native to South Asia and is found in Thailand, Burma, Malaysia, South India, Vietnam, Ceylon, and many islands in Melanesia and Polynesia.
The Calophyllum tree is known under different names according to the geographical places: Tamanu, Ati, Kamanu, kamani, Fetau, Dolno, foraha or Dilo.
The Tamanu tree grows up to 25 to 30 meters tall and has long branches. The trunk of the tree is massive with a cracked bark of brown or even blackish color. Traditionally, the wood of Tamanu is used to make sculptures of idols and canoes. The shiny, dark green leaves are quite large and oval. The small white flowers with yellow center give off a delicious fragrance. The green fruit of the tree, the size of an apricot is not edible.
The fruits contain a nut in which is an almond. The almonds are dried on a rack for about one to two months. These almonds change color, they turn brown. They also become very sticky. Once this transformation has taken place, the oil can be extracted easily from the dark almonds using only the mechanical pressure. A very abundant oil is extracted, representing 50 to 60% of the dry weight, which must be purified by filtration and finally stabilized with natural vitamin E.
Benefits of Tamanu Oil – Main Properties
Tamanu oil has the therapeutic property of promoting the formation of new tissues, which accelerates the healing and growth of healthy skin. Because of its healing properties, tamanu oil is a natural remedy widely used in first aid.
In the Pacific Islands, tamanu oil is generously applied to cuts, scrapes, burns (boiling water, caustic and flammable gas), sunburn, insect bites, scrapes, acne pimples, scars. acne, psoriasis, diabetic wounds, anal fissures, thrombosed hemorrhoids, dry or scaly skin, chapped skin, blisters, frostbite, psoriasis, eczema and herpes pimples.
Polynesian women apply tamanu oil locally to massage their baby’s skin to promote beautiful skin (clear and spotless) and prevent skin rashes such as diaper rash. Tamanu oil also has a soothing effect on irritated skin.
Tamanu oil has been shown to have anti-inflammatory activity. This activity is due in part to calophylollide 4-phenyl coumarin and to a group of xanthones contained in the oil and explains the reduction of the inflammatory reaction which usually accompanies all kinds of cutaneous lesions: wounds, rashes, insect bites, acne pimples, etc. Applied locally, this oil is also traditionally used against sore throats.
Tamanu oil has antifungal properties. Indeed, the friedeline molecule contained in tamanu oil has a good antifungal activity against Pseudallescheria boydii (responsible for fungal keratitis) and a moderate activity against Trichophyton schoenleinii (cutaneous fungus parasitizing hair, skin and nails, associated with jock itch, ringworm, athlete’s foot, dermatophytosis of the scalp and beard).
Tamanu oil contains fractions of n-butanol which exert antifungal action against especially Trichophyton Semii and Trichophyton metagrophyte.
Tamanu oil also has natural antimicrobial properties. The oil contains several potent bactericidal agents that are effective against various human and animal pathogens.
These antimicrobial phytochemicals include friedeline, canophyllol, canophyllic acid and inophynone. They exert direct and indirect antibiotic effects by stimulating the phagocytic activity of the cells of the reticuloendothelial system (macrophages).
Researchers have compared the antimicrobial activity of Tamanu oil with that of ampicillin. They observed that canophyllol has good antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus (Staphylococcus aureus), a bacterium that causes abscesses, boils, infected wounds, inflammation, suppuration, sepsis and conjunctivitis.
In addition, the canophyllol contained in Tamanu oil acts against Corynebac