1. Improves Immune Function
Castor oil may be able to help improve lymphatic drainage, blood flow, thymus gland health and other immune system functions. A small, double-blind study published in the Journal of Naturopathic Medicine looked at the effects of castor oil packs on 36 human subjects. The packs covered a 12-inch by 12-inch area of the skin on the upper right quadrant of the abdomen. The subjects had the packs applied while resting at 9 a.m. and then removed at 11 a.m. (so for a total of two hours). The subjects had their blood drawn four times (one time pre-treatment and three times post-treatment) and there was no repetition of treatment.
Overall, the researchers found that the subjects who used abdominal castor oil packs had significant increases in the production of lymphocytes compared with patients using placebo packs.
Why is this an awesome finding?
Lymphocytes are the immune system’s natural “disease-fighters” that attack outside invaders such as toxins, bacteria and other perceived threats.So it appears that castor oil helps with the production of proper levels of lymphocytes, which are released and stored within the lymphatic tissue of the thymus gland, spleen, lymph nodes and tissue that lines the small intestine. The lymphatic system also impacts the circulatory and digestive systems, which is why the oil is sometimes used to support heart health and improve digestive issues like constipation, too.
2. Boosts Circulation
A healthy lymphatic system and proper blood flow go hand in hand. When the lymphatic system fails (or edema develops, which is the retention of fluid and toxins), it’s much more likely someone will have circulatory issues. This is due to the fact that the lymphatic circulatory system works directly with the cardiovascular circulatory system to keep blood and lymphatic fluid levels in an optimal balance.According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, “A growing body of evidence reveals that the lymphatic system influences the health of multiple organs, including the heart, lung, and brain.” So castor’s oil ability to positively affect our lymphatic systems likely means better overall circulation and a health boost to major organs like our hearts.
3. Moisturizes Skin and Boosts Wound Healing
As you probably already know, beauty is more than skin deep; the health of your skin is often a reflection of the health of your gut, immune system and hormonal balance. The real price of beauty is steep, and loading your skin with chemical ingredients found in store-bought skin care products usually only makes irritation worse. Castor oil is completely natural and free of synthetic chemicals (as long as you use Visagenics pure 100 percent pure castor oil, of course), yet it’s rich in skin-boosting ingredients like fatty acids. Applying castor oil to dry or irritated skin can really help to discourage dryness and keep it well moisturized.
Castor oil can also help with wound healing thanks to its moisturizing as well as antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. In vitro research has shown that castor oil is effective against many types of bacteria, including Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Out of all the staphylococcal bacteria, Staphylococcus aureus is considered the most dangerous and can cause mild to serious skin infections and other concerning staph infection symptoms.
4. Helps Dry, Irritated, Sun-Burnt or Acne-Prone Skin
As a natural antibacterial agent, castor oil works similarly to coconut oil for boosting skin health. It also makes a great general skin moisturizer and anti-inflammatory blemish treatment.If you want to get rid of acne forever, you need to get to the source of the problem. Castor oil is 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. Plus as mentioned earlier, castor oil has been shown to fight off Staphylococcus aureus which is huge since acne is commonly caused by this strain of bacteria.
Here are several ways to improve skin health using castor oil:
For a natural acne treatment that’s beneficial long term, dap castor oil onto the affected area with a clean cotton swab. You can also try to use apple cider vinegar and essential oils like Visagenics Frankincense Oil mixed with a small amount of pure Visagenics Coconut Oil. All of these options reduce redness and swelling of acne blemishes along with scarring and pain.To prevent future breakouts, wash your face first in warm water to open up the pores and then massage some of the oil into your face and leave it on overnight, rinsing the next morning.
To hydrate skin without clogging pores: mix 1/4 cup of castor oil and 3/4 cup Visagenics virgin coconut oil (or 3/4 cup sesame oil), then apply to your body and face.To moisturize skin that’s normal or oily, try using 1/4 cup of castor oil with Visagenics Jojoba Oil, grape seed oil or olive oil instead of coconut and sesame oils. Gently massage dry areas of your skin with the mixture, then dab off any excess using a clean towel. Allow the treatment to soak in overnight and then rinse well in the morning with warm water.
Another option is creating a fast-acting face mask using one teaspoon of castor oil along with one egg yolk. Apply the mixture to your face for 10–15 minutes, then clean your face.To soothe a sunburn, castors oil’s anti-inflammatory properties reduce pain and redness. Apply castor oil mixed with coconut oil (in a 1:1 proportion) to the affected area, or try the same remedy as a natural lip balm to solve chapped or sun-burnt lips.Something else to consider is that castor oil and ricinoleic acid can enhance the transdermal penetration of other chemicals, so it’s a good idea to only use castor oil along with other natural ingredients that you don’t mind fully absorbing into your skin.
5. Lowers Symptoms of Arthritis
Castor oil is often used as 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. Observational studies have even shown that topical application of ricinoleic acid (the main component of castor oil), “exerts remarkable analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects.” A randomized, double-blind, comparative clinical study looked at the effects of castor oil capsules on symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. Subjects were either given a castor oil capsule (0.9 milliliters) three times daily for four weeks or a capsule of diclofenac sodium (50 milligrams) for the same amount of time. Overall, they found that castor oil worked as well as conventional treatment and can be used as “an effective therapy in primary knee osteoarthritis.”
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 best pain-reducing results.
6. Helps to Encourage Strong, Shiny Hair
Just like coconut oil benefits your hair, using castor oil may help your hair grow faster, thicker, stronger and shinier. Massage the slightly warmed-up oil into your hair and scalp, and it can improve the blood circulation to your follicles to hopefully speed up hair growth. You can try making a homemade hair mask by massaging the oil into your roots and spreading it all over your hair, tying up your hair and covering it with a cap, then leaving the oil on overnight before washing it out.