Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health
Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health

Castor oil

Castor oil's healing properties

Castor oil for a younger skin

How to make and use castor oil packs

Taking castor oil internally

Warnings / contraindications for castor oil

Is castor oil toxic?

References

Castor oil is made from castor beans, the seed of the ricinus communis plant. The main component of castor oil is ricinoleic acid, an unsaturated omega-9 fatty acid. Ricinoleic acid has analgesic (painkiller) and anti-inflammatory properties. Castor oil is an under-rated remedy. Edgar Cayce used it as one of his famous cures.

Castor oil has been used for thousands of years as a cure for a wide variety of ailments. It was used in ancient Egypt, Persia, China, Africa, Greece and Rome. In the 17th century it was discovered by people in Europe, and after that it found its way to the Americas. It is used as a laxative, as a hot compress, and to get a healthy skin and treat many skin ailments.

In traditional Ayurvedic medicine, castor oil is used for pain relief (for arthritis, lower back pain and sciatica); constipation; dysentery; inflammatory bowel disease; bladder and vaginal infections; asthma.

Castor oil's healing properties

Castor oil for a younger skin

Don't use proprietary, factory-made, store-bought products on your skin. Moisturisers, night treatments, exfoliants, cleansers and so on nearly always contain chemicals to improve shelf life, handling, spreading and so on. Pure unadulterated castor oil is cheaper, healthier and more effective.

Castor oil is a thick oil, quite heavy to spread with your fingers. You don't need to put much on - just enough to cover the skin. Apply it and leave it on for a couple of hours. You can leave it on overnight, though it is a little messy on your pillowcase or bedclothes.

Regular use of castor oil reduces wrinkles, treats many different kinds of skin blemishes including liver spots (age spots), keratosis, and helps you get a beautiful, clear, healthy and younger-looking skin.

How to make and use castor oil packs

Castor oil packs are a traditional treatment for a range of conditions including:

A warm castor oil pack placed on the skin will increase the circulation, promote the elimination of various toxins, and stimulate the healing of tissues and organs beneath the skin.

Wet a piece of clean undyed wool or cotton flannel with castor oil so that it is saturated but not dripping. Place the material on your skin, and cover the flannel with a sheet of plastic. Place a hot water bottle over the plastic to heat the pack. Rest comfortably for 45-60 minutes with the pack in place. I recommend that you lie on a towel because the oil can be messy.

A castor oil pack is commonly used on the following areas: over inflamed and swollen joints, muscle strains and bursitis; on the right side of the abdomen to stimulate the liver or gall bladder; on the centre of the abdomen to relieve constipation and other digestive disorders; on the lower abdomen to relieve menstrual irregularities or uterine / ovarian cysts.

When you have finished, you can clean the skin by wiping with a clean dry cloth. If you need to completely clean off all the oil, use a dilute solution of baking soda in water.

It is generally recommended that a castor oil pack be used for only 3 to 4 days in a week rather than every day, to treat a condition or for detoxification.

Store the pack in a covered container in the refrigerator. Each pack may be reused up to 25-30 times.

Taking castor oil internally

Warnings / contraindications for castor oil

Your comments about any of your experiences - positive or negative - with your use of castor oil are welcome at Grow Youthful. I am always curious about your use of and experience with natural remedies, and your feedback is very welcome.

Is castor oil toxic?

The LD50 oral (rat) in numerous safety datasheets (MSDS) is more than 5000mg/kg. (3, 4)

A National Toxicology Program (NTP) subchronic oral toxicity study using castor oil at concentrations up to 10% in the diet of rats was not toxic. (1)

In a study people ingested castor oil at dietary concentrations as high as 10% for 90 days and were closely monitored. They did not experience any ill side effects. (2)

Castor oil is classified by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as generally recognized as safe and effective for use as a stimulant laxative.

As a food additive, the Joint Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)/World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Committee on Food Additives established a human acceptable daily castor oil intake of 0.7 mg/kg body weight.

Castor oil extract had a strong suppressive effect on S(180) body tumours and ARS ascites cancer in a study of male Kunming mice. No dose-related reproductive toxicity was found in mice fed up to 10% castor oil for 13 weeks. (1)

The instillation of a castor oil solution into the eyes of nine patients resulted in mild and transient discomfort and minor epithelial changes. (1)

On human skin in the 48 hour dermal patch test castor oil was found non-irritating. (2)

References

1. Final report on the safety assessment of Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Glyceryl Ricinoleate, Glyceryl Ricinoleate SE, Ricinoleic Acid, Potassium Ricinoleate, Sodium Ricinoleate, Zinc Ricinoleate, Cetyl Ricinoleate, Ethyl Ricinoleate, Glycol Ricinoleate, Isopropyl Ricinoleate, Methyl Ricinoleate, and Octyldodecyl Ricinoleate. Int J Toxicol. 2007;26 Suppl 3:31-77. doi: 10.1080/10915810701663150.

2. International Castor Oil Association. www.icoa.org FAQs, retrieved 7 March 2017.

3. Fujimoto M, N Higashi A, Kume K, Ueda K, Hino N.
Environ Dermatol, 4:268-276, 1997.

4. Hino N, Ikushima=Fujimoto M, Higashi N, Kume A, Ueda K, Hino N.
Environ Dermatol, 7:144-153, 2000.

5. Final Report on the Safety Assessment of Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Glyceryl Ricinoleate, Glyceryl Ricinoleate SE, Ricinoleic Acid, Potassium Ricinoleate, Sodium Ricinoleate, Zinc Ricinoleate, Cetyl Ricinoleate, Ethyl Ricinoleate, Glycol Ricinoleate, Isopropyl Ricinoleate, Methyl Ricinoleate, and Octyldodecyl Ricinoleate. International Journal of Toxicology, Volume: 26 issue: 3_suppl, page(s): 31-77, 1 May 2007.

6. B Medhi, K Kishore, U Singh, S D Seth. Comparative clinical trial of castor oil and diclofenac sodium in patients with osteoarthritis. Phytother Res. 2009 Oct;23(10):1469-73. PMID: 19288533.

7. Harvey Grady. Immunomodulation Through Castor Oil Packs. Journal of Naturopathic Medicine, Volume 7, Number 1 1999.

8. Celme Vieira, Stefano Evangelista, Rocco Cirillo, Annalisa Lippi, Carlo Alberto Maggi, Stefano Manzini. Effect of ricinoleic acid in acute and subchronic experimental models of inflammation. Mediators of Inflammation, 9, 223-228 (2000).