3. Castor Oil
Castor oil is derived from the castor seed, and has been used throughout many ancient cultures in Egypt, China, Africa, Greece and Rome as a popular remedy for a wide array of things. Castor oil is commonly used in food as an additive and flavoring agent, as well as an ingredient in skincare products and cosmetics. This oil has had a long history of industrial use as well, being used as an aircraft lubricant in World War I.
One of the most popular uses for castor oil is a constipation remedy as it irritates the intestinal lining, and it’s also believed to induce labor in pregnant women. Castor oil has been used to relieve arthritis, sciatica, asthma, dysentery and bladder infections. It holds antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and analgesic components, and is an effective treatment for skin conditions like keratosis, dermatitis, acne, ringworm and warts. Castor oil can promote healing and removal of toxins from the body by improving the lymphatic system, and has even been reported to have a suppressive effect on some tumors.
Castor oil is a popular treatment for hair and beauty, and is commonly used on the eyelashes to promote growth. It contains natural antibacterial and antifungal properties, and it’s also high in vitamin E, proteins, and other beneficial components like omega 6 and omega 9 fatty acids. Castor oil also contains ricinoleic acid, which is believed to increase circulation when applied to the scalp, further improving hair growth. Ricinoleic acid can also help balance the pH levels of the scalp, reversing some of the damage done by hair-dye and other harsh chemical products.
To use castor oil for hair growth, mix the oil in with another carrier oil like argan or jojoba, and treat the scalp with it once or twice a week. Castor oil can be quite thick and difficult to remove, but it’s an extremely effective conditioner. For the best results, apply a small amount to the roots and hair length, and leave it in overnight. This allows most of the oil to be absorbed into the hair, making clean-up a bit easier. Castor oil can have some negative side effects when ingested, including stomach cramps, digestive discomfort, diarrhea and other gastrointestinal problems, and it’s generally advised to avoid consuming it if you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers, colitis, hemorrhoids or prolapse.