NAIDOC Week is a week in July that celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Recently I, Bianka Carson, founder of Windyigarn, was asked how, as an Aboriginal woman, I celebrate NAIDOC Week.
The answer may be accepted or equally considered offensive.. I do not celebrate NAIDOC Week, and I certainly don't shun it. You see, I grew up with my sister, living with my father who was white. I did not grow up with my mother who is Aboriginal. Culture was not something that was spoken about in the family home, and quite frankly, neither was the subject of my mother. So, for me, I had a missing connection. I sought out any information I could, in my mid teens, about my heritage and culture..and I'm still learning and honouring! In a sense, you could say that I celebrate NAIDOC week daily... so NAIDOC isn't really a 'thing' for me personally. Of course I participate in events that I can, and support my daughters at their events at school and encourage them to ask questions.
So .. how do I celebrate my cultural history and achievements every day? I use my ancestors knowledge around Bush Medicine. Now, I could go and list a million and one types of Bush Medicines.. but today I am going to talk about two of my absolute favourites.. Quandong & Kakadu.
I remember first hearing about Quandong in a story of an Aboriginal Painting. I had heard about loads of other bush medicine. The cool bit is, that I found out years later that my grandmother picked Quandong as a child.
Soooo, what's the big deal about Quandong?
My ancestors used Quandong for immune system strength, prevention and targeting certain illness.
Quandong is high in Vitamin C and Rutin. Rutin is pretty easy to understand, but its also pretty powerful. It has anti-inflammatory (thank you phytoactives) properties and anti-oxidants that calms down redness and soothes your skin. Vitamin C is known to keep your skin looking youthful (Wrinkle and Fine Line Smoothing), stimulate collagen production and reduce the appearance of pigmentation and dark circles (YES- I said pigmentation!!).
There is some science behind Quandong Extract defending the skin from sun, pollution and preventing toxins entering the skin. This is mainly because of the natural actives of Ferulic, Tryptophan and Chlorogenic Acid that is naturally found in Quandong. Without getting too scientific here, Quandong also holds several alpha-amino acids that help lock in moisture and keep your skin cells hydrated which promotes glowing complexions.
Lets get back to the pigmentation thing though... Quandong has been proven to inhibit melanogenesis. Melanogenesis is the process in which pigment (or melanin) forms in the skin. So , yes, this baby actually isn't so sweet to hyper pigment and blocks the formation of melanin, which is what we want when we are trying to tackle an over production of melanin.
Ok, last technical talk on Quandong. I promise!! Quandong holds active phenolic acids, which work in a similar way to AHA's, but are way less harsh on the skin. This means that Quandong helps break down the protein barrier to push along excess sebum, dirt, grit and grime to promote clear skin cells.
So, those cute little ancient red things are actually pretty cool!
Why Am I Obsessed With Kakadu Plum?
Kakadu Plum has the highest Vitamin C content out of any food source..in the world!! We've already spoken about Vitamin C, but think about Vitamin C as a Brightener (Stretch Marks, Acne Scars, Discolouration, Age Spots, Hyperpigmentation) and your anti-oxidant boost. There's some talk in journals about Kakadu Plum boosting the efficacy of SPF too!.
Because of Kakadu Plum's effective anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, you'll often find this beauty in anti acne treatments and skincare as it helps soothe, calm and reduce inflammation that causes acne.
If you are looking to add Quandong & Kakadu to your daily routine you'll want to check these beauties Kakadu Serum