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Menopause Evening Primrose Oil
Benefits, Dosage, Side Effects

Menopause evening primrose oil can help with menopause fatigue, joint pain, menopause and dry skin, and more.

Who Needs Menopause Evening Primrose Oil?

Oenothera biennis is a plant native to North America.  The roots have been used for food.  The seeds are used to make the oil. 

Evening primrose oil contains linoleic acid and gamma-linolenic acid (GLA).  Linoleic acid is an essential fatty acid, which means your body cannot make it, it must get it from food.    Many people can make GLA from linoleic acid, but there are also many who cannot.  It is the GLA in menopause evening primrose oil that provides the benefits.

Many people cannot convert linoleic acid into GLA.  These people need to supplement GLA.

People with diabetes and low thyroid have trouble converting linoleic acid to GLA.

Eating trans fats, excess sugar and alcohol can interfere with GLA production.

People whose ancestors ate lots of organ meats and fish may need to supplement with GLA as well. 

Adequate GLA production requires sufficient quantities of protein, magnesium, zinc, biotin, vitamin B3,  B6, B12, vitamin C and vitamin E.  If you are not eating a diet that provides all of these nutrients, you may benefit from supplementing with evening primrose oil.

People who cannot convert linoleic acid to GLA may have increased premature aging, irritable bowel syndrome, eczema, PMS, alcoholism and diabetes.

Benefits of Menopause Evening Primrose Oil

Borage oil and black current oil also contain good amounts of GLA, and may be used instead of evening primrose oil.

GLA can increase energy.  Dosage for this is 11 capsules of menopause evening primrose oil or two 1000mg capsules of borage oil (giving you 500mg of GLA.

GLA is good food for the skin.  It is very lubricating for the skin.

GLA may reduce plaque.  It may also lower blood pressure

GLA may be helpful with rheumatoid arthritis.  It may reduce joint pain, swelling and morning stiffness.

GLA may help with weight loss if you are very overweight.

GLA is anti-inflammatory and may lower blood sugar.

GLA, along with EPA (an omega-3 fatty acid), may increase and help maintain bone mass, thereby helping to prevent osteoporosis.

GLA can help some women with hot flashes.

GLA can help with some PMS symptoms such as breast tenderness, depression, irritability and fluid retention.

GLA may help reduce alcohol cravings.

Evening Primrose Oil Dosage and GLA dosage

Take menopause evening primrose oil, borage oil and black current oil as organic capsules that are refrigerated, have a freshness date, and come in dark containers that do not let light in.

For rheumatoid arthritis, take 1400mg of GLA per day.

For diabetes, take 480mg of GLA per day.

For PMS symptoms, take 3000-4000mg of evening primrose oil.

4000 to 8000mg of evening primrose oil is a good general dose for health, or 250-1000mg of GLA.  Borage oil and black current oil both have more GLA than evening primrose oil, so you will need to take less of these two oils.

NOTE:  The doses above are appropriate for relief of symptoms.  Recommended dosages on products are usually much less, so you will need to account for that. See precautions below for safety information.

I have been using borage oil for relief of low back pain and stiffness.  I am continually amazed at how well it works.  Even on good days (without borage oil), the pain is gone but I can feel that something is happening in my low back.  When I take the borage oil, it is completely gone. It takes about 3-4 days to remove the stiffness, and if I miss a day or two, it comes back.  So I take it every day now.

Precautions and Side effects of Evening Primrose Oil

Do not take in pregnancy

Do not use if you have a seizure disorder.

Do not take more than 3000mg of GLA per day.

Do not take with any of these medications without talking to your doctor: the antibiotic ceftazidime; chemotherapy; cyclosporine; nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), including ibuprofen; phenothiazines for schizophrenia, including chlorpromazine, fluphenazine, perphenazine, promazine and thioridazine.


Enig, M., Ph.D. Gamma-Linolenic Acid.  The Weston A. Price Foundation.  Retreived November 10, 2008 from the website:   WestonAPrice.org  Know Your Fats

Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA).  University of Maryland Medical Center website.  Retreived November 10, 2008 from http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/gamma-linolenic-000305.htm http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/gamma-linolenic-000305.htm

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