Castor Oil is a very pale yellow liquid that is extracted from castor seeds (Ricinus Communis). It is an anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant oil which has been used for centuries for its therapeutic and medicinal benefits. It is believed that most of castor oil’s benefits are derived from its high concentration of unsaturated fatty acids. Although it has a strong and rather unpleasant taste, castor oil is used in cosmetics, soaps, textiles, medicines, massage oils and many other everyday products.
What are the Benefits of Castor Oil?
Castor Oil has been used both internally and externally for thousands of years due to its many wonderful health benefits. Since it can strengthen the immune system, castor oil is considered a great remedy to treat the following major illnesses and ailments:
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Cerebral Palsy
- Hair loss
- Pain from Arthritis and Rheumatism
It has also been found to help with many everyday problems such as:
- Yeast Infections
- Gastrointestinal Problems
- Menstrual Disorders
- Athlete’s Foot
- Skin Abrasions
Below are some more healing properties of Castor Oil:
To increase immunity: For those who follow naturopathy, castor oil strengthens the immune system by increasing white blood cells and thus fights infections. It is also proven that castor oil increases the count of T-11 cells (a type of white blood cells) and the production of lymphocytes in the blood within hours of application. This initiates the body to produce more antibodies as well as to kill viruses, fungi, bacteria and cancer cells.
To induce labour: A lot of pregnant women at full term are orally given castor oil, as it induces labour by pushing uterus contraction, say gynaecologists. The ricinoleic acid in the oil activates EP3 prostanoid receptor in uterus, thus helping in delivery. However, it is not recommended in a lot of cases, as it makes the woman feel nauseous.
To get rid of moles and cysts: Applying castor oil with a pinch of baking soda on the infected area is known to give the desired result. In fact, topical application of castor oil also solves the problem of cysts and corns by dissolving them. It is also said that castor oil helps dissolve cysts in the ovary as the fatty acid in castor oil is easily absorbed by the skin.
For constipation: Castor oil is also beneficial as a laxative — when taken orally, ricinoleic acid gets released in the intestine and then it starts functioning as a laxative. The heat created by castor oil initiates action by helping the process of digestion and cleansing the system by helping in proper bowel movement.
To treat joint pains: Castor oil is known for treating arthritis, its anti-inflammatory properties make it an ideal massage oil for relieving joint pain, nerve inflammation and sore muscles. Massaging the joint with castor oil and placing a hot water bag helps in pain relief. In cases of arthritis, this process if repeated twice a week will ensure better results.