Possible Benefits of Castor Oil

· August 16, 2015
Castor oil has many properties that can be beneficial to your health. If you're wondering about them, read this article to learn more!

Castor oil is well-known for its natural laxative properties, but it has some other interesting uses. Although medical authorities state that it can be toxic in high enough quantities, its use in traditional medicine is longstanding. Discover the possible benefits of castor oil in the following article.

What do I need to know about castor oil?

A wide variety of ailments may be treated with castor oil, the most popular use being as a laxative to relieve constipation. Castor oil may also help relieve aches and pains, stimulate the immune system, treat skin wounds, and work as a powerful antibiotic, antiviral, and fungicide.

Read more here: Everything You Need to Know About Castor Oil

The oil comes from the seeds, also referred to as beans, of the plant and is composed of fatty acids (90% of which are ricinoleic acids). They’re considered to be responsible for the plant’s unique healing properties. The castor plant is originally from India.


The castor plant was adopted by many countries, such as Egypt, China, Persia, Italy, Greece, Africa, Europe, and America. It’s now widely used industrially, mostly in textiles, but also in Russia to lubricate machinery in the cold climate, as it has consistent viscosity and won’t freeze.

Other non-medicinal uses for castor oil include food additive, an ingredient for skin care and cosmetic products, rubber manufacturing, fibers, varnishes, dyes, leather treatments, etc.

Discover: 6 Ways to Use Castor Oil for Your Face

Contraindications and side effects

It’s important to keep in mind that parts of the castor bean are lethal if consumed or ingested in any way. The beans aren’t ready for consumption until after they have gone through a special process to extract the oil. Don’t worry, castor oil is safe to use because the toxins are only present in the raw beans.

Its side effects include skin reactions and intestinal disorders that can irritate the intestinal lining. It’s not recommended for use by those who are suffering from cramps, ulcers, hemorrhoids, prolapse, or those who have recently undergone surgery.

A bowl of castor oil.

Possible health benefits of castor oil

  • Colitis relief: To alleviate the discomfort of this intestinal imbalance, make a compress and apply to the abdomen. Simply wet a cloth with oil and leave it on for an hour or two. Repeat up to twice a day.
  • Arthritis relief: If your joints hurt due to arthritis, castor oil may help. Put three tablespoons of castor oil in a pan and heat for three minutes. Dampen a cloth or cotton ball and rub into the painful areas. Cover with a dry cloth and use a heating pad to keep the area warm. Leave on for a half hour or less.
  • Body massage: It can be used as a body oil for anti-inflammatory massages. It may help relieve aches and pains in the muscles and joints. It’s heavily used in aromatherapy.

Possible beauty benefits of castor oil

  • To lengthens eyelashes: This is one of many cosmetic uses for this oil. It may help make your lashes look fuller and longer. It can also be used on the eyebrows. Apply using a mascara brush. Repeat every night before going to bed and don’t rinse it out.
A woman with long eyelashes.

  • To remove feet callusesCastor oil may help remove dead skin cells on the feet. To do so, wet a cloth with a little oil and apply directly to the affected area. Wrap with gauze and cover with a sock to keep it in place. Leave on overnight and then file away the now much softer calluses.
  • To remove moles: This is a very popular home remedy. Prepare a mixture of baking soda and castor oil. Apply to the mole and cover with a bandage. Leave on overnight and wash with warm water in the morning. Repeat daily until the mole falls off.
  • Skin care: Because it’s such a great moisturizer, it’s a component of many cosmetic products and creams. It may help smooth and protect the skin. Also, it may help treat dry skin, eczema, flaking, herpes, ulcers, burns and skin wounds.

It can also be made into soap for a shampoo that will leave hair smoother and healthier with more shine. It’s also used in the treatment of stye, dandruff, and insect bites, especially mosquito bites. It may also reduce your risk of premature skin aging.

  • To strengthen nails: If you have brittle nails, apply castor oil with a cotton ball on each nail. Since it’s a great source of vitamin E, it may help keep your nails looking beautiful.


  • Patel, V. R., Dumancas, G. G., Viswanath, L. C. K., Maples, R., & Subong, B. J. J. (2016). Castor oil: Properties, uses, and optimization of processing parameters in commercial production. Lipid Insights. https://doi.org/10.4137/LPI.S40233
  • Vieira, C., Evangelista, S., Cirillo, R., Lippi, A., Maggi, C. A., & Manzini, S. (2000). Effect of ricinoleic acid in acute and subchronic experimental models of inflammation. Mediators of Inflammation. https://doi.org/10.1080/09629350020025737
  • Medhi, B., Kishore, K., Singh, U., & Seth, S. D. (2009). Comparative clinical trial of castor oil and diclofenac sodium in patients with osteoarthritis. Phytotherapy Research. https://doi.org/10.1002/ptr.2804