About Castor Oil
The castor plant grows widely in India, China, Egypt, etc. The oil extracted from the castor seeds or beans is called as castor oil. The oil has a lot of medicinal uses and has been used since ancient times. Castor oil can be used both externally and internally. The castor oil has a lot of unsaturated fatty acids which is very helpful in various medicinal uses.
The oil is pale yellow in colour and has an unpleasant odour. The oil has the property of not getting spoiled upto 2 years.
Common and Botanical Names
The botanical name is Ricinus communis and belongs to the family Euphorbiaceae. The common names of the herb include castor or castor bean, Palma Christi or “Palm of Christ”, mole bean, mamona oil, mexico seed, oil plant, etc. In Tamil, it is called as Vilakku Ennai or Velakkennai.
Primary Medicinal Uses
Stomach related problems
Castor oil is used for treating gastrointestinal problems. It improves digestion and removes the toxins from the body. Castor oil increases absorption of fatty acids, heals lymphatic tissues in the intestines and promotes growth of tissues thereby preventing digestion related problems. It destroys the infections present in the stomach and kills the tape worms.
If you are suffering from constipation, consume a spoon of castor oil. Make sure that you remain at home after consuming the oil, since it will result is sudden bowel movements. It is not advisable to consume the oil after dinner. Castor oil is bitter and is very difficult for many people to consume. Hence such people may consider mixing it with orange juice for consuming.
If your stomach is infected with ringworms, it denotes that your stomach has been extremely infected. Castor oil is very effective in curing such infections.
It is a good practice to cleanse the stomach once in 2 or 3 months. Take about a spoon of warm castor oil first thing in the morning. Drink 2 or 3 cups of warm water. In about 15 minutes or so, you can experience the bowel getting flushed out. This is a very powerful method and destroys the severely infected fungus and gets rid of even tapeworms. Take only light food for the rest of the day.
If you are suffering from menstrual pain. Apply warm Castrol oil over the skin and cover it with soft cloth. You can place a hot water bottle over it to stimulate blood circulation and get rid of the pain.
Similar to the method mentioned above, apply castor oil packs or massage over the affected joints. The oil has the capability to get you relived of the pain arising from Osteoarthritis (the most common form of arthritis which affects the knee joints, hands, hips, etc) and Tendinitis (inflammation of tendon due to repetitive stress).
Castor Oil in massaging
Take some castor oil and warm it. Take the warm oil and apply it gently over the skin. This can be left for upto an hour.
Applying castor oil ovee the skin removes the wrinkles and helps maintain the youthfulness. The skin becomes smoother and softer. You can apply a small quantity of the oil by dipping in cotton and applying it before going to bed.
The oil is used as skin softener. The oil is very effective in treating Psoriasis.
The oil can be used as hair conditioners and can be used to treat hair problems like loss of hair, brittle hair, etc.
If you are suffering from insomnia, apply a small quantity of Castrol oil over the eyelids with cotton before going to bed. This will result is a peaceful sleep.
Consuming castor oil boosts the immune system. It increases the white blood cells in the body.
In countries like America, castor oil is being sold as a food supplement.
Manufacture of Soaps and Cosmetics
The oil is widely used as an ingredient in the manufacture of soaps. This gives the soaps the property of forming soft and odorless lather. They are also used as a base in manufacture of many cosmetics.
Decorative in Jewellery
The Castor seeds are attractive and hence used as decorations in necklaces and bracelets.
Manufacture of biodiesel
Some of the countries like Brazil used the castor oil in the preparation of biodiesel.
- Castor seeds also called as castor beans are poisonous and should not be consumed
- Once the packet containing castor oil is opened, it needs to be kept in an airtight container and in a refrigerator.
- Castor oil needs to be taken in appropriate doses. Excess consumption may result in various side effects like nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, etc
- Pregnant women should not consume castor oil since it induces labor pain.
- Those suffering from abdomen related problems should avoid castor oil.
- The oil should not be consumed continuously for more than 3 days.
- Do not consume more than a spoon of castor oil for a day.