Castor oil is extracted from the seeds of the castor plant, a plant native to Africa and India. Ricinus communis, commonly called castor, castor, spurge, fig, fig tree, infernal fig tree, among many other words, it is the only accepted species of the genusRicinus, shrubby plant of the family Euphorbiaceae
If we think of this oil, it will possibly come to mind as a remedy used by our grandparents as a purgative, but the benefits of this oil go much further. It is used in various cosmetic products, massage oils, soaps and also medicines, because it offers many benefits for the skin, hair and health in general.
Castor oil is a triglyceride, made up of essential fatty acids. 90% of these fatty acids are composed ofricinoleic acid (omega 9). This unique fatty acid is found in lower concentrations in some other seeds and oils (0.27% in cottonseed oil and 0.03% in soybean oil) and is believed to be responsible for the unique properties castor oil. It also contains a huge amount ofVitamin E, proteins, minerals and has antifungal, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It has been the remedy traditionally used to combat all kinds of problems related to the skin and hair.
Origin and first uses
The castor bean plant is native to India, where it was known as 'Palma Christe', as its leaves were said to be similar to the hand of Christ. Maybe because of itmany healing properties are attributed to it.
Castor bean was adopted by other societies and cultures in Egypt, China, Persia, Rome, Greece, Africa, Europe, and America.Today, it is widely used in industry, especially in textiles. In addition, it is used in Russia to lubricate equipment in cold weather, as it has a consistent viscosity that does not freeze.
14 uses of castor oil for skin and hair
- Facial Cleansing:According to many dermatologists, oil cleansing is an effective method of deep cleansing pores, toning and hydrating at the same time. It is convenient to mix the castor oil with a lighter oil, such as apricot, olive or jojoba oil and massage the skin of the face in circles for a couple of minutes. The fatty acids in castor oilthey will dissolve the remains of oil and dirt that cause blackheads and acne. To remove the oil we will use a soft microfiber cloth, dipped in warm water, drain the excess water and apply it to the face without rubbing, with soft touches. This will help remove makeup, dirt, and all substances that contribute to clogging your pores.
- Natural moisturizer and anti-wrinkle:Castor oil isrich in vitamin E and fatty acids, which penetrate deep into the skin and stimulate theproduction of collagen and elastin, that soften and hydrate the skin. This helps delay the signs of aging, wrinkles, blemishes and fine lines in the eyes and gives the skin a smoother, more youthful appearance. It is not advisable to abuse it because it is a very rich oil, with a couple of drops it will be enough for the whole face. Castor oil is an important component of many cosmetic creams and lotions due to its excellent anti-aging properties and we will generally find it in the composition under the name of “castor oil” and although the name may lead to confusion, this oil has nothing to do with it. with these cute animals.
- Anti-acne: Ricinoleic acid from castor oilreduces inflammation and helps fight acne-causing bacteria. To treat acne with castor oil, you must first wash your face with warm water to open the pores, and then apply the oil on the problem areas. Leave on overnight and wash off the next morning. HoweverCare must be taken not to use too much oil as this could cause the opposite effect to the desired one: clogging the pores and creating more problems for the skin.
- Reduces stretch marks and scars:Fatty acids helpblur stretch marks on the abdomen and thighs by adding elasticity to the skin. The appearance of the scars is also benefited with its use, the fatty acids penetrate the epidermis to the layer of the scar and erase it while stimulating the growth of new cells. Like most natural remedies, it takes time and perseverance to see results, but it is very effective.
- Soothing from insect bites: Before an insect bite (mosquitoes, wasps, bees, etc.) we need a lotion that hydrates, has an analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effect, to reduce possible infections. Thanks to the properties of castor oil, we have this complete kit at our fingertips. Place 1 or 2 drops on the bite and massage until all the liquid is absorbed. We will notice improvement in less than 5 minutes from its application.
- Natural aftersun: It also helps soothe the skin in case of sunburn. For large areas, dip a cotton ball or gauze in castor oil and apply it directly to the affected area. Leave on for an hour (or overnight for irritations and sunburn) and wash off afterward. Repeat several times during the day for faster results.
- Massage oil: Castor oil has a host of health benefits for the body, not just for the skin. Helps to relax muscle tension and helps promote blood circulation. These qualities make it ideal to be used in therapeutic massages. It is a good base oil to dilute essential oils and enhance the effect of the massage.
- Stimulates eyelash growth: In case of weak or scarce eyelashes, we will apply a small amount every night to the roots of the clean and makeup removed eyelashes and we will gently massage until absorbed. There areto use a very small amount since it is a very dense oil that spreads a lot, and withbe careful not to get into the eyes. We can also use it on the eyebrows, in case of having them thin or with depopulated areas and we want to stimulate their growth.
- It stimulates hair growth: In the case of hair, it is recommended to warm it up a little before applying it and massage the scalp for about 5 minutes. It is convenient to repeat this treatment daily and do it before going to sleep, so that it acts during the night and the next morning remove the oil in the shower.oil stimulates blood circulation to the hair follicles, allowing faster growth. It is also rich in Omega-9 fatty acid, responsible for the normal state of capillary health.
- Helps prevent split ends and improve dry or damaged hair: It will also help us to maintain the good condition of the hair in cases of being damaged or dry. Mixing a few drops in our usual shampoo, using a couple of tablespoons as a medium to ends mask once a week will keep it healthy and shiny. Another trick is to apply a couple of drops on the ends as a remedy to repair split ends.
- Enhances the natural color of the hair and prevents gray hair:Castor oil can make our natural hair color look deeper and richer. This oil is very moisturizing, and when applied, it seals the moisture within the hair cuticle avoiding the loss of pigment, making each hair look thicker and darker. After washing hair, towel dry and divide hair into sections. Slightly heat one or two tablespoons of castor oil and apply it with your fingers throughout the hair, rubbing the separated strands between the palms to cover all the hair with the oil.
- Reduces dandruff: In many cases it is said that castor oil hydrates the scalp and thus reduces hair loss. What is known is that when applied as a massage, it significantly reduces dandruff by acting as a hair conditionerand have a moisturizing effect.
- Nail moisturizer: It is an excellent cuticle moisturizer. Massaging a few drops on the fingernails and toenails every night (now that the time to wear sandals is approaching) will help us achieve hydrated, strong and healthy-looking nails.
- Adjuvant in case of corns and calluses:Massaging a little castor oil on the corns will help relieve pain and inflammation caused by its anti-inflammatory action. You have to be constant but it is a fairly effective remedy.
Other properties of castor oil
Ricin and ricinoleic acid have a potential effect on the digestive tract, favoring the rapid evacuation of their contents.
One of the main properties of castor oil it is the laxative effect, derived from the seeds, which are certainly toxic (but not the oil once heated), that cause this effect.
A common dose used to obtain a purgative effect is to take 10 to 30 ml of castor oil. The laxative effect begins 2 hours after consumption.
With this oil you can treat a wide variety of ailments.Although its most popular use is related to constipation, it also serves to reduce pain, stimulate the immune system and relieve skin wounds. It also works as a powerful antibacterial, antiviral and fungicide.
There are other non-medicinal uses of castor oil: as a flavoring or food additive, ingredient for cosmetics and skin care products and, finally, manufacture of gums, fibers, varnishes, dyes, treatments for leather, etc.
Advantages of the consumption and use of castor oil
The properties of castor oil are many. Among them, the following can be highlighted:
In order to combat the discomfort of this stomach and intestinal imbalance,you can make a compress and apply to the lower abdomen. You simply wet a cloth and let it act for an hour or two. A hot water bottle or heating pad can be placed on top. The process can be repeated up to twice a day.
Removes calluses on feet
You can soften this build-up of dead skin on your feet with castor.Dip some of the oil and place directly on the affected area.
Later,fasten with a dressing and put on a sock so that it does not move. Sleep with the cotton all night and, the next day, file the corn a little, which will be much softer.
This is a very popular home remedy. Consists inmake a mixture of baking soda with castor oil, apply to the mole and secure with a dressing. Leave it overnight and in the morning wash it with warm water. Repeat for a few days, until the mole falls off on its own.
Relieves arthritis pain
If your joints ache from arthritis, castor oil can help. Place three tablespoons in a skillet and heat for three minutes; then,wet a cloth or cotton and rub over the painful area. Cover with a dry tissue and place the heating pad to keep warm.
Leave the remedy to act for half an hour at least and one hour at most. It should not be used if the area is inflamed.
Reduce dark circles
To take advantage of this benefit, simply a drop of castor oil should be applied with the ring finger under the eyes and perform a small circular massage so that it penetrates better. Lastly, let it act overnight.
For all the above, there is no doubt about the benefits of castor oil. Again, by way of conclusion, it is worth emphasizing thatits direct consumption can be fatal for a person; For this reason, only its oil is used, once extracted.
Precautions to be taken
It must be taken into account that castor bean has a 'deadly' part if it is consumed or ingested by any means. Thus,you can't eat the seeds without a special process to extract the oil. There is no need to worry about using castor oil, as the poison is only present in the raw seed.
The high content of ricin, a protein of plant origin, is toxic to humans and animals, causing severe symptoms of gastroenteritis, and damage the liver and kidney. Several deaths from high consumption of this compound have been documented.
The side effects of this oil are dermal reactions and intestinal disorders, as it causes irritation in the walls of the intestine.It is not recommended for those who suffer from colic, ulcers, hemorrhoids, colitis, irritable bowel, prolapse or have recently had surgery.
How to make castor oil at home
When preparing the Castor oilDuring the manufacturing process, the extract is heated to reduce and eliminate the ricin content, so that it loses its toxicity.
Due to its high content of ricinoleic acid, typical of the plant ricinus communis,it is a very effective purgative that also have analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects.
In fact, castor extract, with a high content of this fatty acid, is used in modern medicine to impregnate surgical plasters and adhesives for its bactericidal effect and control of cytolysis (cell breakdown).
With information from: https://www.deplantasmedicinales.net