About Me

My photo
Las Pinas City, Metro Manila, Philippines


Friday, November 26, 2010

Castor Oil and Its Uses

Castor seed
                 I've been using castor oil since I was a child. Mother would always give us a teaspoonful of castor oil every time were constipated or rub castor oil on our mouth sores. We found it very effective though, as it will bring us rushing to the restroom. Just 3 applications of castor oil would heal our mouth sores. And mother would say, " my mother and my mother's mother were doing the same to their children so I should, too."

                Now, when I mention about castor oil to my friends who are having mouth sores, they would quickly ask what it is and doubtful of its efficacy. Now a days, more and more people are opting to plant castor plant as a good attraction to their  garden. Very  few know how effective castor oil is in treating some common ailments.

               But what is castor oil?

Castor plant
               Castor oil is a vegetable oil obtained from the castor seed of the castor plant(Ricinus Communis). It is colorless with mild odor and taste. It is an anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant oil. Castor oil is also used as mixtures in soaps, textiles, medicines, massage oils and some cosmetics and lip balms.

               Castor oil had been used for thousand of years for its wonderful health benefits. It can strengthen the immune system and considered a one of the best remedies for the treatment  of some major illnesses and ailments like multiple sclerosis, parkinson's disease, cerebral palsy, hair loss and pain from arthritis and rheumatism.

                 It has been found to help many common everyday problems such as yeast infections, constipation, gastrointestinal problems, menstrual disorders, migraines, acne,sunburn, athlete's foot, ringworm, skin abrasions, inflammation and mouth sores.

                  Castor oil is also used to induce labour so care must be observed in using it. Pregnant women should always consult a doctor before using it. Castor  oil is normally safe if used properly and in moderation. A normal recommended dosage for castor oil is no more than one-half to one teaspoonful per day. Overdosage may result in diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain or cramping. Consult your doctor or naturopathic professional before consuming it especially when in doubt.

                   Here are some uses of castor oil:

 Arthritis Remedy
     It is an excellent massage oil for relieving arthritic joints, nerve inflammations and sore muscles. Here is how to do it :            

         1.  Make a small pad by folding a small piece of unbleached cotton flannelette into 3 or 4 layers. 
         2.  Dip the cotton pad into Castor Oil and place it on to the affected joint or muscle.
         3.  Cover the pad with a plastic wrap. 
         4.  Place a hot water bottle or heating pad over the plastic wrapped cotton pad. The plastic wrap will prevent the water bottle or heating pad from getting oily. 
         5.  Leave the cotton pad on for 45 minutes to an hour, once per day.
 You can reuse the castor oil pack. Simply place it into a plastic ziplock bag and refrigerate it until it is ready to be used again.
Constipation  Remedy
               Castor  oil is a very strong laxative, which makes it very effective against constipation. Take a teaspoonful of castor oil in the morning. If you finf the taste not appealing to you, you can mix the oil with orange juice or any juice you prefer to take away the bitter taste without affecting the laxative effects. Please take note not  to take it for more than 3 days so if symptoms persist for longer than 3 days, consult your physician immediately.
Stye Treatment
Castor oil have anti-bacterial components found to be effective against styes(oil gland infections on the eyelid).  Simply add a very small drop of castor oil directly onto  the stye 2 or 3 times per day.
Ringworm Treatment
The active componets of castor oil called undecylenic acid had been found to be very effective in treating this stubborn fungal infection. Here's how to use castor oil in treating ringworm; 

        1.     Spray Castor leaves with some hot water and coarsely crush the leaves. 
        2.     Soak the leaves in pure coconut oil. 
        3.     Warm the leaves to a temperature that will not burn the skin, and apply the leaves over the affected area as a poultice. 
        4.     Leave on the skin for at least one hour, or optionally overnight. 
        5.    You may wrap the leaves with unbleached cotton fabric to prevent the oil from staining your bed sheets.
            Repeat the procedure every night before going to bed until cured. If you notice any redness or discomfort around the area, discontinue this remedy and consult your doctor.
 Skin Problems
Castor Oil is also effective to cure skin infections and other skin problems such as sunburn, abrasions, acne, dry skin, boils, warts, stretch marks, liver/age spots, athletes foot and chronic itching and inflamed skin and even mouth sores, dry and cracked lips.

        1.   Dip a cotton ball into Castor oil and apply it onto the affected skin in the morning and at night
        2.   Alternatively, for larger skin areas, soak an appropriately large piece of unbleached cotton cloth in Castor Oil and wrap the affected area overnight. 
        3.   If the area is very small, soak a Band-Aid in Castor Oil and cover the infected skin overnight.
It is recommended to soak stubborn fungal infections that affecting the skin and nails in Epsom Salt for 10-15 minutes to soften and disinfect the skin before applying Castor Oil. This can help speed up the healing process.  
Wrinkle Treatment
Castor oil is a natural emollient that penetrates the skin. It helps stimulate the production of collagen and elastin which can soften and hydrate the skin. It is a wonderful natural treatment for wrinkles since it restores and rejuvenates skin's natural youthful appearance by making skin smoother, softer and pliant. Dip a small cotton ball into pure Castor oil and apply it on wrinkled skin before going to bed. Use only a small amount of oil when applying it to the skin near the eyes. 

                  Next time you feel constipated, having some mouth sores or any skin problem, I suggest you try using castor oil.