Natural Standard® Patient Monograph, Copyright © 2017 ( All Rights Reserved. Commercial distribution prohibited. This monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. You should consult with a qualified healthcare provider before making decisions about therapies and/or health conditions.


Native Americans traditionally considered the evening primrose plant's seeds, leaves, and roots to be a food. They also used the plant to treat bruises or wounds, hemorrhoids, stomach problems, and sore throats.

Oil extracted from evening primrose (Oenothera biennis) plant seeds consists of a high amount of unsaturated fatty acids. These fatty acids include omega-6 fatty acids, linolenic acid, and gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). GLA has been licensed for treating breast pain and eczema in numerous countries.

Evening primrose oil (EPO) has been studied for several disorders, particularly those affected by metabolic products of essential fatty acids. There is good scientific evidence to support EPO for eczema treatment.

This evidence-based monograph was prepared by The Natural Standard Research Collaboration