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Health Benefits of


Also called Chrysopogon zizanioides, vetiver is cultivated in the Philippines and tropical regions of Asia. Vetiver oil is used as a culinary ingredient. The vetiver plant is used as an ornament, fodder, industrial product, and perfume. [1] Topical benefits of vetiver are discussed in the subsequent sections.


Antimicrobial Activity of Vetiver for Treatment of Acne

Vetiver essential oil constituents enhance the permeability of bacterial cell walls and induce bacterial death. These constituents include vetiselinenol, beta-vetivone, khusimol, isovalencenol, alpha-vetivone, and khusenic acid. Vetiver essential oil is effective against acne-causing bacteria that include Cutibacterium acnes, Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, and Streptococcus pyogenes. Inhibition of growth and activity of these bacteria result in improvement of acne. [2]

Vetiver as a Tick Repellent

Vetiver oil extract contains chemicals that are repellent and toxic to ticks, ants, and cockroaches. Nootkatone is a chemical found in vetiver oil extract that is non-toxic to humans but has harmful effects on ticks, ants, and cockroaches. Other chemicals in vetiver oil extract with similar properties include alpha-cedrene, zizanol, and bicyclovetivenol. [3]


Figure 2 | Fig. 2 Time-kill dynamics of stable C. zizanioides emulsified lotion (at HLB 9) against acne-inducing pathogens (a) S. aureus (b) S. epidermidis, and (c) S. pyogenes. Blue-grey disrupted line: C. zizanioides emulsified lotion (HLB 9), black disrupted

Anti-inflammatory and Antioxidant Activities of Vetiver

Vetiver essential oil contains chemicals that have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These chemicals are cedrene, alpha-amorphene, beta-vatirenene, and alpha-gurjunene. These chemicals regulate the gene expression of inflammatory enzymes and suppress the release of inflammatory cytokines. These chemicals also reduce the levels of free radicals and reactive oxygen species. [4]

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