If you’re new to this series, we are just finishing up exploring a wide variety of Mind/Body Therapy techniques that will help to optimize your hormones, improve your fertility health, decrease the negative impact of stress, and strengthen your mind-body connection. Across a total of eight weeks, we have been exploring everything from Yoga to Acupuncture to Emotional Freedom Technique, and many others in-between.
So far we’ve covered:
If you’ve missed any of the previous posts, definitely check them out. From free meditation resources, to instructions on how to practice Emotional Freedom Technique on your own, to complete descriptions of all fertility focused Circle + Bloom programs – each post is packed with incredible information on these unique mind/body therapies.
In this final week of the series I’m discussing a topic many women may be unaware of: Castor Oil Therapy.
Castor oil therapy has been used for centuries to promote healing in the body and more specifically the reproductive system. Castor oil packs are an excellent therapy when used with Maya Abdominal Massage or Self Fertility Massage. Castor oil therapy has been used for centuries, but is just now becoming a bit more mainstream in American culture. There’s evidence that castor oil therapy has been used for over 4,000 years!
Castor oil is derived from the seeds of the Castor plant (Ricinus communis), also known as Palma Christi. Essentially, in this technique, a cloth is soaked in unrefined castor oil (referred to as a castor oil pack) and is then placed on the area of the body you are wanting to heal. The castor oil soaks into the skin and starts to work on the internal organs. Castor oil stimulates blood circulation and heals the tissues and organs below the surface of the skin where the castor oil pack is placed.
Castor oil has been traditionally used to decrease inflammation, pain, abnormal growths, and to increase circulation. Typically, castor oil therapy is used in addition to Self Fertility Massage as both mind/body therapy techniques have similar goals in relationship to healing and supporting the female reproductive system. Castor oil packs are primarily helpful for:
Castor oil packs stimulate 3 important parts of the body: the lymphatic and circulatory systems and the liver. The stimulation of these body systems aids the body in healing the organs and tissues beneath where the castor oil pack is applied.
A healthy liver, in addition to a strong lymphatic and circulatory system, supports the body so that it’s better prepared to carry your future baby when the time is right for you.
Stimulating circulation and healing in your internal body is an integral step in increasing your fertility and giving birth to a happy, healthy baby. Here are the top ways castor oil therapy helps to optimize our fertility health:
Our liver detoxifies hormones, drugs, and other toxins we’re exposed to in our environment. This is why the liver is commonly referred to as our body’s chemical processing plant.
At times our liver can become overwhelmed by unhealthy lifestyle choices such as having an unhealthy diet, being sedentary, using toxic chemicals in our homes, exposure to xenohormones, smoking cigarettes, etc. A liver that is overwhelmed cannot adequately function, which may contribute to hormonal imbalance and disease.
Castor oil has been shown to significantly assist with liver detoxification naturally. By placing castor oil over your liver, the primarily compounds within the oil will soak into your skin and transmit into your lymphatic system. This will allow the oil to flow through your liver and clear it of any lingering waste.
While the lymphatic system runs throughout our entire bodies, many of the integral portions of this system are centered around our reproductive organs. This is why it’s incredibly important to keep this system healthy and running as expected when we’re focusing on fertility and hormone health.
In general, our lymphatic system is geared towards ridding our body of waste and toxins, as well as being an immunological defense system against illnesses. However, as there is no “pump” to rid the lymphatic system of waste, it relies heavily on external movement and manipulation to function.
By placing a castor oil pack over our reproductive organs, we are helping to stimulate movement of lymph which cleanses our reproductive organs and promotes healing of damaged tissues where the pack is applied. Another primary method of cleansing the lymphatic system is exercise. This is why exercise is incredibly important, no matter which stage of life you’re in.
When we ignore our lymphatic system, we are allowing waste to build up internally, which can overload our detoxification systems and create stress on the body. Consistent cleansing, through methods such as exercise and castor oil therapy, is ideal in keeping our lymphatic system working effectively.
Our circulatory system runs throughout our entire bodies, including our heart, blood, veins, and arteries. This system is designed to deliver freshly oxygenated, nutrient-rich blood throughout our body, including to our reproductive organs.
Without proper circulation to the reproductive organs, they may not function at their best, this may invite disease, hinder proper healing of damaged areas, promote formation of scar tissue and adhesion.
Castor Oil Packs have been used for centuries to stimulate blood circulation and heal tissue and organs below the surface of the skin
My primary suggestion to begin utilizing castor oil therapy is to purchase a castor oil pack. This is a convenient starter kit which will include the unrefined castor oil, the wool flannel and an instruction booklet.
The castor oil pack will be most effective when left on for 60-90 minutes and done for 4 or 5 consecutive days per week. Don’t do while menstruating, and if you’re actively trying to conceive– don’t do after ovulation.
Each castor oil pack can typically be used 25-30 times, which means that this therapy treatment, if it speaks to you, can be incredibly cost effective over time.
Castor oil therapy can cause minimal side effects, primarily related to gastrointestinal health.
Castor oil can have a laxative effect on the body, meaning that while castor oil can be very beneficial for alleviating constipation, castor oil can cause some digestive discomfort such as loose stools. If you experience loose stools after doing a castor oil pack, skip the next day, and then try again the following day, perhaps leaving the castor oil pack on for a shorter amount of time.
Additionally, I do not recommend using castor oil therapy while menstruating, if you are pregnant, if you have an IUD, or after ovulation if you are actively trying to conceive.
Castor oil packs stimulate important detoxification systems in the body such as the lymphatic system, circulatory system and the liver. This is important for clearing out toxins, dead or foreign tissues and old blood. The stimulation of these systems may also help prevent disease in the reproductive organs. Bottom line is that castor oil packs are a great way to support a healthy reproductive system and optimal fertility.
What’s your experience with castor oil therapy? Have you tried it?
If you’ve been using castor oil therapy regularly, what kinds of benefits have you experienced?
Have you used castor oil therapy for fertility or hormone support? Was it successful?
Spread some castor oil therapy lovin’! Sharing is caring, and I bet you have some friends who would love to read this too :).
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Sarah Jane Sandy is a certified nutrition therapist, and a fertility and women’s health expert. She has helped hundreds of women increase their fertility naturally and go on to have healthy full-term pregnancies. She has been working with women and couples trying to get pregnant for over 15 years and over 90% of the women who work with her get pregnant and have healthy babies. Learn more about her own fertility journey here. To send Sarah a message, complete her Contact Form.