Made from the castor seed, castor oil is high in triglycerides and ricinoleic acid. These two items make it a potent medicinal oil that can be used both internally and externally. For some, having castor oil is the cure-all to their ailments.
Castor oil is considered to be pretty unique because ricinoleic acid is not found in many other substances, and it’s such a dense, concentrated source. It is produced by cold-pressing the seeds and subsequent clarification of the oil by heat.
Aside from its primary constituent, ricinoleic acid, castor oil also contains certain beneficial salts and esters that function primarily as skin-conditioning agents. At the same time, they help stabilize the texture and consistency of products, which is why castor oil is used in so many cosmetics, hair, and skin-care treatments.
Throughout history, castor oil’s most popular use has been for treating skin, digestion, and hair conditions. Check out the 7 things that castor oil can do for you and you may decide to become a faithful user of this vegetable oil.
Castor oil acts as a laxative. According to researchers, the main fatty acid in castor oil, ricinoleic acid binds to receptors on the muscle cells of your intestinal walls. This causes those muscles to contract and push out stool and thus, relieves constipation.
Castor oil works effectively and quickly when taken during the day. Have a 15 ml dose of the oil once a day. Since it has a very strong taste, some suggested chilling it a bit before consuming or mixing it with orange juice, in order to mask the flavor.
2. Relieve dry, itchy skin
Castor oil helps in relieving dry and itchy skin. It also makes a great skin moisturizer, anti-inflammatory blemish treatment, and can delay the signs of aging like wrinkles since it helps increase collagen and elastin production.
The ricinoleic acid found in castor oil also makes it a great natural home remedy for fighting mild acne. As it penetrates deep into the skin, it fights bacteria overgrowth that can clog pores, while softening and hydrating irritated skin at the same time.
Combine 3/4 cup shea butter, 4 tablespoons castor oil and 5 to 10 drops of lavender oil, Roman chamomile or carrot seed oil. Whip the shea butter and oil together to get the consistency you want. Add your essential oil and mix some more. Pack it into jars and use freely.
3. Add shine and growth to hair
Using castor oil can help your hair grow faster, thicker, stronger, shinier and free of dandruff. Besides the fact that castor oil has omega-6 fatty acids to make hair shine, it goes to the root of the problem and improves circulation.
Massage slightly warmed-up castor oil into your hair and scalp, and it will improve the blood circulation to your follicles, which speeds up hair growth.
Also, you can make a hair mask from 1 tablespoon castor oil, 1 tablespoon olive oil and juice from 1/2 lemon. Massage this through the hair to the tips and letting it sit for 30 minutes before washing and styling your hair. This hair mask also has antifungal and antibacterial properties that can help clear up dandruff and scalp infections.
4. Treat fungus
Castor works well as a toenail fungus treatment. For the same reason, it helps fight acne, castor oil can get rid of persistent fungal infections, moles, and cysts. Traditionally, the method used was to apply a small amount of castor oil with a pinch of baking soda to the infected area.
When ingested, castor oil also works internally to balance gut bacteria and reduce lingering toxins, yeast or molds that can cause fungus to develop in the first place.
5. Reduce pain in joints
Castor oil is often used a natural treatment for arthritis pain, joint swelling, and inflammation. It has natural anti-inflammatory properties that make it an ideal massage oil that can be applied to aching joints, muscles or tissue.
Try massaging painful areas with castor oil followed by a hot water pack to increase absorption and drainage. Practicing this process twice weekly can give you the most pain-reducing results.
6. Helps balance hormones and improve libido
Enhancing the absorption of fat molecules within the digestive tract is essential for the formation of healthy hormones. That’s what makes castor oil consumption a way to balance hormones naturally. Also with less floating toxins present within and around cells, coupled with better blood flow, sex organ function works more efficiently and people experience less PMS symptoms, fatigue, mood swings and depression.
7. Improves immune function
Castor oil is believed to improve lymphatic drainage, blood flow, thymus gland health and other immune system functions. Research has shown that patients who use abdominal castor oil packs have significant increases in the production of lymphocytes. Lymphocytes are the immune system’s natural “disease-fighters” that attack outside invaders such as toxins, bacteria, and other perceived threats.
Castor oil has some great medicinal properties. Be aware that some people may be allergic to the oil, so test it on a small area before going crazy with it.