Castor oil packs are another great method of detox and one to add to your arsenal. Not only are they cheap and easy to do, but they help out one of our key organs; the liver.
Used in ancient Japanese healing arts and other ancient cultures, castor oil enjoys a long and distinguished history. One of the oldest medical textbooks in existence, the Ebers Papyrus, mentions that the early Egyptians applied castor oil topically as early as 1550 B.C.!!
One study on castor oil packs states the following;
“With a minimal 2-hour therapy period, this study found that castor oil packs produced a “significant” temporary increase in the number of T-11 cells that increased over a 7 hour period following treatment and then returned to normal levels within 24 hours later.
The T-11 cell increase represents a general boost in the body’s specific defense status. Lymphocytes actively defend the health of the body by forming antibodies against pathogens and their toxins. T-cell lymphocytes originate from bone marrow and the thymus gland as small lymphocytes that identify and kill viruses, fungi, bacteria, and cancer cells. T-11 cell lymphocytes supply a fundamental antibody capability to keep the specific defense system strong.”
The key benefits of castor oil packs are that they help detoxify the liver naturally, support uterine and ovarian health, improve lymphatic circulation, and reduce inflammation. This makes them great for anyone with skin conditions such as acne, chronic UTIs or painful periods, to name a few.
So how do you do a castor oil pack?
What you will need;
Organic, high quality castor oil (hexane free)
A hot water bottle
A flannel, linen cloth or old t-shirt
There are two ways to do this; the beginner way and the advanced way. When I first started out I did the following method because it’s very gentle and a lot less messy!
Rub 1-2 tbsp over your abdomen area, gently rubbing and focusing more on the area that needs the assistance e.g. the liver for detox, or the lower abdomen for period pains, etc.
Fill a hot water bottle with hot water, ready for application to the area
Now what I do is wear an old t-shirt to bed so that I can put this on over the top of the castor oil, and then apply the hot water bottle to the area, over the top of my t-shirt
I do my packs before bed so I can fall asleep like this and in the morning, put the t-shirt in the wash bin and wash the castor oil residue off in the shower. Alternatively, you can use a flannel or linen cloth over the area and place the hot water bottle over the top. Basically, you just want to avoid placing the bottle directly onto the oil and your skin.
Look to have the hot water bottle applied for 1-2 hours, which will tend to be when the hot water bottle has lost all of its heat anyway.
For the advanced option, you want to soak (but not saturate) a linen cloth or flannel in castor oil. You can either apply the oil in the sink or dunk the cloth in a mason jar full of the oil. You then apply this to your abdomen and cover with a dry flannel or cloth, to protect it from getting everywhere.
Lie on a towel because castor oil can stain and slightly elevate your legs. Lie like this for 1-2 hours as previously advised, with the hot water bottle over the area. Make sure you’re relaxing – you could even practise some meditation or read a book.
Once finished, wash off in the shower. You can do castor oil packs once a week as an effective detox protocol.
With any health information, please do your own research as this is not tailored advice. This isn’t recommended if you are pregnant or have an IUD. Although if you use a pack over your liver only, some say this is safe. Please do what’s best for you and if in doubt, speak to your Doctor.