Information on Castor

Latin NameRicinus communis
Other NamesPalma christi
Part UsedProcessed Oil
Herb FormsOil.
AffectsImmune system, Integumentary system
CautionsAvoid large doses. Not for long-term use. Contraindicated in pregnancy, intestinal obstruction, and abdominal pain.
Botanical InfoA small tree with red bark and palmately compound leaves in the spurge family. The mottled beans are enclosed in spiny pods.
DescriptionCastor oil is a well-known cleansing laxative and purgative. It is sometimes used to treat food poisoning. Externally it is used for warts, appendicitis, fibroid cysts, sore, abscesses, and neuralgia--as a castor oil pack.

Soak a flannel or other absorbent cloth that is folded for extra thickness in a good quality castor oil until saturated. Place the soaked cloth in a glass casserole dish and warm in the oven at about 350 deg. until nice and hot, but not scalding. Place over the affected area (pelvis, breast, etc.), cover with a plastic bag (to keep it from leaking oil), a small towel, and hot water bottle or heating pad to keep it warm. Keep in place for about 45 minutes. It is best to do a castor oil pack at least 5 days a week, usually in the evening, or other times it is convenient. The castor oil has active constituents called lectins that are absorbed into a local area and call forth and activate the immune system to help remove tumors, cysts, and promote healing. Edgar Cayce writes extensively about the healing powers of castor oil.

In Chinese medicine, castor oil is used for inflammation, to remove toxins, and to moisten the intestines.

Castor has a taste of BITTER, SWEET and a temperature of NEUTRAL.


Oiloil-soaked cloth layed on hot as a poultice

Ailments Treated by Castor

AilmentTreatment SupportApplication
Cornsimmune activatoroil externally
Ear [middle] inflammationimmune stimulantoil packs externally
Fibroid cystsimmune stimulantoil externally
Metrorrhagialocal immune stimulantpacks externally
Nasal polypsimmune stimulantoil externally
Ovarian cystlocal immune stimulantoil as a pack
Uterine cystsimmune stimulantoil as a pack
Wartslocal immune stimulantoil externally


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Weiss, R. 1988. Herbal Medicine. Beaconsfield, England: Beaconsfield Publishers.
Wren, R.C. 1988. Potter's New Cyclopaedia of Botanical Drugs. Essex: C.W. Daniel Co. Ltd.