Friday, October 15, 2010
Endless Possibilities with Juniper Berries
I love the smell, the taste, the look, and the health benefits of juniper berries! This is an amazing tree/bush and it has a tremendous list of healing properties (including being believed to be capable of curing nearly all diseases)! Here is the list of health benefits of juniper essential oil (an oil that I would love to add to my collection!):
Anti Septic: It used to be a well known anti septic in old times and people wounded or injured in wars or in sports were treated with this. It was even used in injuries sustained by the mother as well as the child, during labor. It efficiently protects the wounds from being septic and catch tetanus.
Anti Rheumatic: The Juniper Essential Oil promotes and improves circulation very well. It also helps in the removal of toxins like uric acid from the body. Both of these properties help fight ailments like rheumatism, arthritis, gout, renal calculi etc. which are related with improper circulation and accumulation of toxins in the body. Also relieves swelling.
Anti Spasmodic: Juniper Essential Oil is effective on almost all forms of cramps, be it muscular, be it intestinal, respiratory or be it of any other part. It relaxes muscle cramps and helps cure spasmodic cholera too. Being an anti spasmodic, it helps cure all other problems related with cramps or spasms.
Astringent: Being an astringent, Juniper Essential Oil helps cure toothache, stop hair fall, strengthens grip of gums on teeth and protect them from swaying, falling, tightens loosened muscles and gives a feeling of firmness, fitness and youth. This property can also be used to cure diarrhea too. The most important benefit of this property lays in the fact that being an astringent it can cause blood vessels to contract and reduce or check haemorrhage.
Carminative: Carminative is a property that helps removal of gases from the intestines. Gas, trapped in intestine and forcing upwards, can be very dangerous sometimes and even fatal. When gas pushes upwards, it chokes, gives chest pains, indigestion and uneasiness, raises blood pressure, can risk your heart and gives acute stomach aches. Here, Juniper Oil can help you a lot. It effectively removes gases with the downward passage and do not let gases form too. Juniper Oil is very good for those who are suffering from chronic gas trouble.
(Having a Juniper tree in our pasture intrigues my fascination and inspires me to pursue to harness it's healing offerings...I might just experiment with making a tincture!)
Diuretic: Juniper Oil is diuretic in nature, that is, it promotes urination. It increases frequency of urination. Thus, it is very beneficial for those who are suffering from accumulation of water in the body, swelling etc. due to chronic renal failure etc. It relieves them by removing extra water from the body through urine. It also helps in losing weight (because each time you urinate, some fats are lost from the body), reducing blood pressure, removing extra sodium and toxins like uric acid from the body.
Depurative: The essential oil of Juniper cleans blood of toxins and thus acts as a detoxifier or blood purifies. This property is also known as Depurative, meaning ‘One which purifies’. It helps remove the regular toxins like uric acid, heavy metals, pollutants and certain compounds and hormones produced by the body itself, from blood, as well as other foreign toxins which get into blood accidentally.
Rubefacient: As the name goes, Rubefacient means an agent that makes the face look red. But this is true not only with the face but with the whole body. Such an agent, when applied on skin, increases blood circulation just below the skin to such as extent that the skin starts looking red. This may also cause irritation on skin if applied in excess. But again, an improved blood circulation below the skin certainly benefits the skin and keeps it healthy.
Sudorific: Sudorific is an agent which can bring about heavy sweating or perspiration. This is nothing to get annoyed at. Actually a good perspiration makes you feel lighter, fit and helps removal of toxins and excess salt and water through sweat. This cleans the skin pores and openings of sweat and sebum glands and keeps away acne and other skin diseases. Juniper Oil has good Sudorific properties.
Stimulant: Properties of Juniper Oil like Emenagogue, Galactogogue and Diuretic etc. result from a single property of this oil called Stimulant. Being a stimulant it stimulates all the activities inside the body. This stimulating effect also helps overcome fatigue, dizziness and depression. It also stimulates brain & neurons, nervous system, secretions from endocrine and exocrine glands, which includes secretion of milk, sebum, sweat, tears, urine and discharges during menses, digestive system and excretory system.
Stomachic: Juniper Oil is stomachic, that is, it keeps the stomach in order and keeps it functioning well. It helps cure stomach disorders and ulcers and ensures proper flow of bile, gastric juices and acids in stomach. Sometimes, the inner lining of stomach is injured due to prolonged acidity and ultimately results in ulcer. Juniper Oil can help you avoid this situation too, as it maintains proper secretions of bile in stomach. Bile is basic in nature and neutralizes the acids.
Tonic: Heard of health tonics? Had some? Juniper Oil is also a tonic, because it tones up everything, including muscles, tissues, skin as well as various systems functioning inside the body, such as respiratory system, circulatory system, nervous system, digestive system and the excretory system. This tonic effect helps retain youth for a long and maintains proper health.
Vulnerary: If a diluted solution of this oil is applied on wounds, or blended with a skin cream and applied, it helps your wounds heal faster and keeps them protected from infections. This oil is equally beneficial in healing internal wounds, cuts and ulcers.
Other Benefits: It disinfects air and helps cure kidney stones, inflammations, urinary tract infections, acne, eczema, skin diseases, dandruff and enlargement of prostrate gland.
Few Words of Caution: It should be avoided during pregnancy and by those who have kidney problems. It should be used in low concentrations.
Blending: Juniper Essential Oil blends well with essential oils of Bergamot, Cedar Wood, Cypress, Grapefruit, Geranium, Lavandin, Lavender, Lime, Lemon, Lemongrass and Vetiver
If you would like to get some Juniper Berry essential oil to add to your natural medicine cabinet, than you might want to try this one titled "Juniper Berry Essential Oil" from Sahara's Supplies; by the way her item description has even more information about this therapeutic oil!
Now I have even heard that you can cook with Juniper Berries! Check out the recipe to this luxurious dish titled "VENISON IN RED WINE AND JUNIPER BERRIES AND SOUR CHERRY SAUCE"! Mmmm, I want to make this crowd pleaser! (Resources: http://www.justfoodnow.com/2009/10/30/tamarind-and-juniper-the-sour-and-the-fresh/)
If you would like to get some juniper berries for cooking with, making tinctures, or other nutritiously mesmerizing creations than you should consider getting some of these "Juniper Berries 1 oz." by The Whimsical Witch.
Speaking of a whimsical witch, you might be asking, "Okay, so Jessica what did you do with your juniper berries?" I decorated with them! I got the idea from of a home decorating magazine; juniper smells wonderful and tis the season to decorate with them!
I made a fanciful tablescape with them on an end table in my living room, by placing a few juniper sprigs in a large votive glass of water and setting one of my decoupage canisters "Calm, Cool, and Collected" (which I just sold in my shop!) next to it along with one of my favorite books about herbs and this very unique and whimsical witch tea pot! I got this quaint tea pot at a garage sale last summer and I decided to show it off this Halloween time of year!