Castor is also known as Ricinus communis (Scientific Binomial Name), Castor bean / Castor oil plant / Wonder tree (Common English), Eranda / Chitrabija / Triputi / Tribija / Vaataari / Chanchu / Manda / Uruvaka / Gandharva-hastaa / Panchaangula / Vardhamaana / Uttaanpatraka / Vyaaghrapuchha / Chitraa (Ayurvedic), Bedanjeer / Arand (Unani), Arandi (Hindi / Urdu), Amanakku / Vilakkennai Kottaimuttu / Ammanakku (Tamil), Erendel (Marathi), vranaha / amanda (Sanskrit), Veranda (Bengali), (Telugu), Oudla (Kannada), Chittamankku (Malayalam).
Castor Oil Pack
It is easy to make castor oil pack at home. Here is how to make the one. Heat approximately 500 ml water or enough to fill a hot water bottle to desired temperature and pour into a hot water bottle. In a large bowl, mix 120 ml castor oil and few drops of lavender or peppermint essential oil. Fold a piece of flannel or woolen cloth into two or three layers. Dip the folded cloth into castor oil mixture. Lie down and apply the soaked cloth to your abdomen. Cover with a sheet of plastic wrap or a plastic bag laid flat. Place the hot water bottle on top of the plastic. Lay the large towel over the hot water bottle and tuck it under each side of your body to hold in warmth. Keep the pack in place for at least 30 minutes. Repeat daily, as long as cramps persist. A warm castor oil pack will also help relieve the congestion and discomfort of endometriosis during PMS (Premenstrual syndrome). Apply a castor oil compress to the kidneys to help ease the passage of kidney stones or gallstones.
Castor Oil as Laxative for Constipation
Castor oil is a mild laxative that is safe enough to treat even small babies. To treat constipation in infant, mother should dip her finger into the castor oil and let the baby suck on it. For adults to treat chronic constipation, 1 tablespoon of castor oil should be taken with a cup of ginger tea. This tonic will neutralize toxins and relieve gas and constipation. Castor oil tends to create dependency, in the sense that once you use it, other purgatives rarely work. That is why it is recommended to use castor oil for constipation only in severe cases or in emergencies, as a last resort, but not on a regular basis. For intestinal worms, take a tablespoon of the freshly ground coconut at breakfast followed by a dose of castor oil after three hours. The process may be repeated till the cure is complete.
Health Benefits of Castor Oil
5 drops of castor oil in a little juice or water taken on an empty stomach in the morning, is highly beneficial for allergies in the intestinal tract, skin and nasal passages. Therefore it is recommended in the treatment of dysentery as small doses of castor oil in the form of emulsion. This acts as a mild aperient and facilitates quicker removal of offensive matter, minimizes the strain during motion and also acts as a lubricant to the ulcerated surfaces. Castor oil salve is always a good choice for healing wounds and scars. Castor oil can also be applied to bunions twice daily to penetrate the skin deeply and help move congested hardened tissue. To treat rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis, drink 1 cup of ginger tea with 2 teaspoons of castor oil added. Castor oil contains natural precursors of steroids, which help to heal the inflammatory condition of rheumatoid arthritis. Take this tea before going to bed. Expect some laxative effect from the castor oil.
Castor Oil for Skin
Rubbing castor oil on swelling helps to reduce inflammation. To treat warts, mix castor oil and baking powder into a paste, and apply at night with a plaster, leaving it exposed during the day. Tea made with castor root is useful to treat many joint related diseases such as arthritis, sciatica, chronic backache and muscle spams. The tea is also a decongestant, anti-arthritic and anti-inflammatory substance. It is also an effective treatment for gout. While preparing any herb poultice try using castor oil for more better results. Skin calluses and corns can be easily soften with castor oil. For corns on toes, use castor oil as a softener with a corn pad as protector. Either you can make one or try non medicated, doughnut-shaped pads, sold at pharmacies. Place one of these pads around the corn, dab a few drops of castor oil onto the corn with a cotton swab, then put adhesive tape over the top of the pad to hold it in place. The little padded doughnut encircles the corn and shields it from pressure while also holding in the moisturizing castor oil. For warts, rub castor oil into wart daily. The oil can make warts disappear, perhaps by keeping them moist so the skin cells in the wart just come apart.
Eye and Ear Care with Castor
To loosen stubborn ear wax, massage the outside of the ear. Put a little castor oil on the mastoid bone (the bone behind the ear), and gently massage. Pull the ear lobe, and at the same time open your mouth. This will help to loosen the ear wax, and it will come out quite easily when you irrigate with water. Castor oil shows cataract preventing action. One drop of pure castor oil (without preservatives) placed in the eye at bedtime lubricates the cornea and the conjunctiva and helps to remove molecules of kapha from the lens. In this way one can prevent cataracts from developing. Rubbing a little castor oil on the soles of feet at bedtime also helps eye irritation. Next morning your eyes will feel really happy and fresh. A healing salve called as collyrium (kajal) is made of castor oil and natural camphor. Kajal is available in most Indian stores and is effective for soothing eyes if used everyday.
Fibrocystic Breast Disease and Breast Tenderness
Time-honored remedies for breast tenderness included castor oil packs and warm compresses. To prevent breast abscess, mastitis, congestion, and stagnation of milk in the breast, gently massage your breasts with warm castor oil. Take 1 teaspoon of the oil, and gently massage the breast from inside outward—that is, from the sternum (breastbone) back toward the armpit, both underneath and around the nipple, and to the side. This kind of gentle massage before the morning bath, as well as at bedtime, will help to relieve the soreness. Massaging the breasts in this way will improve the circulation of the mastic tissue and encourage lymphatic drainage into the armpits and brocystic changes can be minimized. Do not apply the castor oil to the areola and nipple. If you apply castor oil to the nipple and your baby sucks the oil, he or she may get diarrhea. So either avoid the nipple or wash off the oil before nursing the child.
Castor Oil for Hair Growth
Regular use of castor oil as hair oil helps the luxuriant growth of the hair. To treat the baldness, mix castor oil with equal amounts of fresh onion juice, cover with a scarf and leave on overnight. Do this for two consecutive weeks. Castor oil is folk remedy for hiccups. Mix 1 teaspoon honey with 1 teaspoon castor oil. Every 2 or 3 minutes dip index finger into the mixture and then lick your finger.
Ricinus communis Side Effects and Warnings
Not to be used during pregnancy. Do not use internally if you have intestinal obstruction or abdominal pain. Do not use for more than 8 days. Do not take castor oil or any other drastic purgative during pregnancy, it will make the baby hyperactive.