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Anti-Aging

Kakadu Plum: Why This Superfruit Is The Next Big Thing In Skincare

by Dr. John Layke

June 16 2016

With the highest concentration of Vitamin C of any fruit, Australia’s Kakadu plum is the newest superfruit ingredient in skincare…

Never heard of Kakadu plum? That’s OK. I hadn’t either until a recent hiking trip in Australia’s Outback. Come to find out, the Kakadu (ka-ka-DO) plum has been used medicinally for thousands of years by the Aborigines—the indigenous people of Australia.

So, what the heck is it?

Some call it…the Billy Goat Plum!?

The Kakadu plum is the fruit of a tall, slender tree that grows in the woodlands of Northern and Western Australia. Also known as gubinge or billy goat plum, Kakadu plum is kind of like a gooseberry—yellow-green in color and about the size of an almond.1 And just in case you’re a trivia fanatic, the scientific name for the Kakadu plum is Terminalia Ferdinandiana.

Kakadu plum is considered a ‘bush tucker’ or, in other words, a native Australian Aboriginal food used for medicinal purposes. They deem it a gift from the “Dreamtime,” an Aboriginal reference to their mythical ancestors credited for the world’s beginning.

So, What’s SO Great About It?

Sure, you can eat this green-colored fruit raw or make it into a jam but, according to the ancient Aboriginal medicinal practices, the Kakadu plum is also a powerful natural healer for all kinds of issues.

Here are just a few ailments that Australia’s native people use the plum for:

  • Sunburns and open sores
  • Common colds and flu
  • Sore limbs
  • Headaches2

And science seems to back up this ancient belief of the plum’s healing properties.

One study, published in Molecules in December 2012, found the Kakadu plum possesses anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic properties3. Apart from gallic and ellagic acid, the Kakadu plum is also a good source of calcium, magnesium, and fiber4.

Greatest Plum Power of All?

The main benefits of the Kakadu plum are largely due to its insane amounts of vitamin C!

Did you know the Kakadu plum has up to 100 times more vitamin C than an orange?

In fact, the Kakadu plum is believed to possess the most vitamin C of any food on earth.5

According to studies, the vitamin C content of the Australian plum is 2000-3000 mg /100g and may even reach 5000mg/100g—much higher than an orange, which has 50mg /100g.6

Why is this such great news?

kakadu plum

Harvesting the Kakadu plum.

Vitamin C is considered to be a potent antioxidant and vital nutrient in slowing the aging process. It is also crucial for the production of proline—an amino acid needed to create collagen. Due to its extraordinary vitamin C content, this potent plum is fast becoming famous as a key component in skin care products.7

Due to its superfruit status, this tiny, yellow-green fruit is like the new silver bullet of skincare products. Further, because of the recent demand for this powerful plum, it could potentially offer opportunities for the native people of Australia to create sustainable industries.

What Skin Problems Can Kakadu Plum Help?

Almost anyone with concerns about improving the appearance of aging skin can benefit from using products containing Kakadu plum. There is a good reason many creams, moisturizers, cleansers, exfoliators, and toners in the market today contain Kakadu plum extract.

If you’re dealing with any of the following, here are the benefits of considering this adding this superfruit to your skincare regime:

  • Fine Lines or Wrinkles

The antioxidants in the nutrient-packed fruit can aid in helping to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.8 And products containing Kakadu plum, due to the fruit’s potent amount of Vitamin C, can boost the creation of collagen. The gallic acid in the Kakadu plum also works as an astringent, fending off bacteria, virus, and fungi.

  • Dark Circles or Under-Eye Puffiness

The fruit’s extract can aid in lessening puffiness and dark circles under the eyes. Why? Because it is loaded with vitamins C and E, along with carotenoids and folic acid.9 These nutrients reverse the properties of free radicals and can help lessen the appearance of aging.

  • Dark Spots

Due to the extremely high vitamin C content, it can be effective in reducing visible dark spots and giving the skin a healthy, youthful glow. Thus, it’s an essential ingredient in our dark spot corrector product. Vitamin C is a powerhouse in reducing the appearance of dark spots, improving skin discoloration and restoring the skin’s natural, even tone.

Kakadu Plum | Beverly Hills MDWe can’t overstate how important a role Vitamin C plays when it comes to using Kakadu plum for dark spots.

The main cause of dark spots, also known as “age spots” or “liver spots,” is exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) light. UV rays stimulate the production of melanin, a substance that gives color to the skin. When you are over-exposed to UV rays, melanin accumulates in certain areas and in higher concentration. This, in turn, leads to dark spots.10

Vitamin C isn’t a type of “sunscreen,” per se because it doesn’t absorb UV light. Rather, it helps protect the skin from UV damage due to its antioxidant properties.11

Antioxidants fight the effects of dangerous molecules known as free radicals.

When oxygen enters the body, it splits into single atoms that have unpaired electrons. But electrons are used to being in pairs, so these atoms scour the body looking to “pair up” with others. And they don’t care where they find those other electrons – they’ll steal them from cells or any other place they can find them in the body. Not only does this lead to muscle and tissue damage, it can also result in skin damage. Antioxidants willingly provide free radicals with the electrons they’re seeking, sparing the body from damage as a result.12

That’s why getting enough vitamin C is not only important for your skin but your overall health as well.

Kakadu Plum | Beverly Hills MDThe Last Word

I brought home tons of memories and photos from my trip to the Outback.

But my most significant souvenir?

Learning about this superfruit and realizing how it could help thousands of my clients help lessen the appearance of dark spots and fine lines!

And that’s exactly why we were inspired to create the Dark Spot Corrector—where the Kakadu plum is a key ingredient!

Your Beverly Hills MD,

Dr. John Layke

P.S. If you’re going to begin using products containing vitamin C, it may be best to build up slowly – particularly with any new product. If you have questions, seek advice from a medical professional before trying any new skin care products.

Article updated: March 28, 2018


Sources

1Kakadu Plum | Bushfood Bush Tucker Taste Australia. Tasteaustraliabiz. 2016. Accessed August 30, 2016.
2Landline. 2016. Accessed September 15, 2016.
3Bellik Y, Boukraâ L, Alzahrani H et al. Molecular Mechanism Underlying Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Allergic Activities of Phytochemicals: An Update. Molecules. 2012;18(1):322-353. doi:10.3390/molecules18010322.
4Saleem A, Husheem M, Härkönen P, Pihlaja K. Inhibition of cancer cell growth by crude extract and the phenolics of Terminalia chebula retz. fruit. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 2002;81(3):327-336. doi:10.1016/s0378-8741(02)00099-5.
5The Australian kakadu plum is rich in vitamin C and phytochemicals. NaturalNews. 2016. Accessed September 15, 2016.
6Duncan G, Lee G, Young B. Vitamin Extraction from Kakadu Plum. 2016.
7Saltzman S. Is Kakadu Plum the Newest Must-Have Beauty Ingredient?. Allure. 2016. Accessed September 15, 2016.
8ND1 Submission for Kakadu Plum Concentrate. 2016.
9Cock IMohanty S. The chemotherapeutic potential of Terminalia ferdinandiana: Phytochemistry and bioactivity. Pharmacognosy Reviews. 2012;6(11):29. doi:10.4103/0973-7847.95855.
10 healthline.com/health/liver-spots.Retrieved March 28, 2018.
11 Vitamin C and Skin Health. (2018, January 01). Retrieved March 28, 2018, from http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/health-disease/skin-health/vitamin-C
12 Szalay, J. (2016, May 27). What Are Free Radicals? Retrieved March 28, 2018.

About the Author

Dr. John Layke

Dr. John Layke grew up in Milwaukee, WI, where he knew from a young age that he wanted to practice medicine. After completing his undergraduate degree at Marquette University, Dr. Layke went on to attend medical school at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and trained in general surgery at the University of Illinois Metropolitan Group Hospitals in Chicago.