Liquid Gold from Morocco
At the point when you’re reading this article, you must’ve heard of it before due to its many benefits; almost considered magical when it comes to beauty products. Argan oil is suppose to be rejuvenating, helps in removing wrinkles, stretch marks and scars, revitalizes the skin and leaves you with the divine sense of smoothness, and this is only the cosmetic part of its usage. It’s real, it’s natural and it’s Moroccan!
Argan oil is a plant oil produced from the kernels of the argan tree (Argania spinosa L.), known as the “Tree of life” that is endemic to Morocco. The tree is extremely well adapted to drought and other environmentally harsh conditions of southwestern Morocco and is now endangered and under protection of UNESCO. The argan tree lives to be about 150 to 200 years old and does not start producing the fruit until it is 30 to 50 years old. Argan oil remains one of the rarest oils in the world due to the small and very specific growing areas.
If you’re lucky enough to own a bottle of argan oil, knowing how it got into that bottle might make you appreciate every drop of it even more. We should be thankful to local Berber womenwhose skills are unparalleled. They work in fair-trade cooperatives where they hand-crack the argan nuts in between two stones, a technique they’ve used for centuries. Instead of being put through a machine (attempts to mechanize this process have been unsuccessful so far), the raw argan kernels are hand-extracted from the hard shell, hand-ground in a stone grinder, hand-kneaded for hours and first cold-pressed into the oil. It takes one woman three days to make just one liter of oil and this is why argan oil is so valuable.
However, it’s not just the Berber women who help producing argan oil. Assistants No. 2 are Moroccan mountain goats, called the Tamri goats, that eat the fruit of the argan tree by
literally climbing the tree to get to the nut, sometimes ten or more at a time in one tree. The argan oil producers then take the droppings of the goats, which has the seed completely undigested, and use that to produce the argan oil.
There are 2 ways to use argan oil, for food and for the body. Culinary argan oil is used for dipping bread, on couscous, salads and similar uses. Argan oil used in the kitchen is considered very healthy; scientific research suggests that culinary argan oil can help to:
- Lower cholesterol
• Improve circulation
• Stabilize blood sugar
• Ease pain from rheumatism and arthritis
• Strengthen the body’s immune system
• Prevent various types of cancer
• Reducing the body’s resistance to insulin, helping treat diabetes
• Protecting the body from cardiovascular and inflammatory diseases.