Henna is a small flowering shrub that has many uses. The fragrant flowers are used to create perfume, and the leaves are dried and then turned into a fine powder that’s used for dying clothes, hair and temporarily dying the skin — hence henna tattooing. The plant has even been known to treat skin conditions.
Health Benefits of Henna
One of the most notable uses of henna is for protecting the skin against infections and eliminating inflammation. Henna has been applied to burns, wounds, and scrapes for generations, not only because it can add a protective layer against foreign pathogens and substances, but also because it has natural cooling abilities that literally suck the heat from the skin. This makes it very useful for sunburns, in a similar capacity as aloe gel.
Although the antioxidant capacity of henna has not been widely studied, the oil has been proven to be an astringent, which has led some people to use henna juice and oil on the skin to reduce the signs of aging and wrinkles, as well as unsightly appearance of scars and other blemishes. This is complemented by the antiviral and antibacterial effects that can protect the body’s largest organ – the skin!
Detoxify the Body
By soaking the bark or leaves of the henna plant in water and then consuming the consequent liquid has been connected to improved spleen and liver health. The liver gives a crucial level of protection to the body, and helps to eliminate the toxins that accrue in the body. By optimizing its function and ensuring its health, you can prevent a wide range of other health conditions.
HAIR BENEFITS AND RECIPES OF HENNA
Henna improves hair growth
The natural properties of henna promote hair growth. The powder can be used to create an essential oil that nourishes and encourages growth.
Boil 250 ml gingili oil until it starts to smoke.
Add 5 cups henna powder to the oil and let it boil for 5-6 minutes.
You can apply this essential oil to your hair 2-3 times a week.
Henna reduces hair fall
The combination of henna powder and mustard oil is an excellent remedy for hair fall.
Boil 250 ml mustard oil.
Add a few henna leaves and continue boiling.
Use the oil to massage your hair and scalp 2-3 times a week.
Use up the oil within a month.
Henna is a natural hair dye
If you are reluctant to use chemicals on your scalp but want to cover greys, henna is a natural alternative.
Add egg and honey to the powder and soak the mixture in an iron vessel for a deeper, richer colour. Remember not to apply henna on your scalp while colouring as this can dry it out. Oil your hair adequately afterwards to prevent drying.
Henna repairs splits ends
Dry and damaged hair is prone to split ends, which worsen the situation. Henna breaks this vicious cycle and gives you deeply conditioned and nourished hair.
Make a paste of henna powder, 2-3 teaspoonful avocado oil and an egg.
Add a little water if it seems too thick.
Apply this to your hair, and try and get every strand covered.
Keep it on for at least 2 hours.
Rinse off with lukewarm water.
Henna maintains balance and keeps scalp clean
Henna retains the natural acid-alkaline balance on your scalp. It removes dirt and oil without messing with this balance, unlike chemical-based products.
Henna makes your hair thick and lustrous.
Regular use of henna in your hair not only prevents hair fall, but you can use henna for hair growth and get locks that are healthy, thick and lustrous.
By: Umaru Maryam Hadejia