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Tap the Powerful Health Benefits of Castor Oil—Without Drinking It!

April 16, 2014

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Castor oil may get a bad rap for its less-than-yummy taste, but it has tons of significant health benefits that mean you shouldn't turn your nose up at it. While it's most widely known as a laxative, its healing properties can be felt in tons of other ways as well. We already covered how castor oil can be used as an effective but delicate natural cleanser for your face, but some of its most powerful benefits are felt beneath the skin. The amazing benefits of castor oil include:

  • Boosting immune response
  • Detoxifying the liver
  • Improving circulation
  • Regulating digestion
  • Relieving lower back pain
  • Treating migraines
  • Increasing stamina and energy
  • Reducing stress
  • Boosting metabolism
  • Improving resistance to nausea

Castor oil is produced by pressing the seeds of the castor plant, a perennial plant with deep red petal-less flowers, and has been used as for medicinal purposes by the Grand Slam of ancient civilizations: Ayurvedic, Chinese, Egyptian, and Greek societies. In fact, the first mention of castor oil was in an Egyptian medical compendium known as the Ebers Papyrus nearly four thousand years ago, where it was recommended to protect eyes from irritation. Since then, traditional healers in many cultures have used castor oil as an immunity booster, pain reliever, and digestion regulator. Modern science has recently begun to agree with these ancient healers: Medical research published by the Journal of Naturopathic Medicine reported that daily application of a castor oil pack can increase the production of T-lymphocytes, which are critical to a strong immune system and aid in repairing digestive ailments. Castor oil packs, usually placed on the abdomen or lower back, provide an easy, ingestion-free way to reap these benefits.

Ricinoleic acid is what makes castor oil so powerful. Castor oil packs allow ricinoleic acid to soak into the skin and be absorbed by the lymphatic system. Essentially, the lymphatic system consists of a secondary circulatory network that processes blood plasma. Ensuring vigorous lymphatic circulation is essential for both proper digestion and healthy immune function.

Castor oil packs can be found in most natural food centers, but it’s remarkably simple to make your own!

You’ll Need:

  • A piece of thick cloth (flannel, wool, or cotton work well) about the size of a dish towel
  • Castor oil
  • A medium to large bowl
  • A hot water bottle or heating pad

To Use:

  1. Soak your cloth in a bowl of warm castor oil.
  2. Apply the cloth to the lower right side of your abdomen.
  3. Place a heating pad or hot water bottle on top of the cloth.
  4. Meditate, read a book, watch a movie, or just chill out for about 45 minutes until the castor oil soaks in completely.

Be aware that the castor oil stains fabric, so wear clothing you don’t mind getting dirty.

Remember that castor oil is a powerful substance. If you are currently have a serious illness, ulcers, cramps, irritable bowels, diverticulitis, or hemorrhoids, or have gone through surgery recently, talk with your doctor before using castor oil, as it can increase blood flow and cramping. Ancient healers across the centuries have been wise enough to recommend castor oil sparingly, but they also knew that there is no better way to revitalize your whole body.

Have you ever tried a castor oil pack? Tell us about your experience in the comments!