Historical Importance

In ancient times, it was thought that squalene from the shark liver oil increases the strength and longevity in Japan. Like the ancient warriors from Japan who used to drink the soup of amaranth, even the Maoris of New Zealand were known to drink the shark liver oil before leaving for the war.

  • The ancient Shoguns of Japan were the first to recognize the beneficial effects of deep sea shark liver oil. They found that it provides strength, vigour, energy, virility and overall good health and called this very rare and precious extract as “Tokubetsu no Miyage” meaning “Special Gift”.
  • The Japanese fishermen of Suruga Bay in the Izu Peninsula, famous for shark fishing called this elixir as “Samedawa” meaning cure-all.
  • The deep sea shark liver was also in use by the coastal people and fishermen of Micronesia and they called it miracle oil.
  • The Spanish mariners called it “aciete de bacalao” or the oil of the great fish.
  • The Chinese ancient pharmaceutical book Honzokomuko also contains references to the therapeutic uses of deep sea shark liver oil.

In the 1950s, squalene was first found in the human body. It was the time when the cholesterol metabolism was first identified. At that time the antioxidant function of the squalene was still unknown. Then almost after a decade, the spotlight was finally placed on the antioxidant agent found in the olives, amaranth and shark liver oil.

In 1963, an article in the scientific journal Nature revealed that the squalene stimulates the macrophages (principal immune cells in the inner and outer protective coats of the human body). In 1982 the detoxifying action of the squalene was shown in the research experiments. In 1993, its radioprotective effects were demonstrated. In 1995, a Japanese research revealed that the squalene can prevent the UV-induced oxidation of lipids in the skin. In 1996, clinical trial in humans was performed to find its effectiveness in reducing the blood cholesterol. The result of these trials and subsequent studies found that dietary squalene:

  • Exhibit superior antioxidant properties
  • Increase the efficiency of the immune system
  • Inhibit cancer growth
  • Enhance the anti-tumour action of chemotherapeutic agents
  • Lower the blood cholesterol
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