The Power of Castor Oil

The Power of Castor Oil

My patients call this “magic oil”. While I know there is more than magic going on, castor oil is very versatile and can help you heal in many different ways.

Castor oil packs are the most important thing you can do to support your lymphatic health. Your lymphatic system is your garbage collectors, so it is very important it is working properly.

Castor oil is from the castor bean. When applied topically, it increases lymphatic fluid movement thereby aiding waste collection and elimination. It also draws white blood cells to the area. White blood cells are your patrols helping to locate and eliminate pathogens.

Another benefit of castor oil is its affinity with the nervous system, helping it to calm and balance. I cover this wonderful oil more deeply in my guide to self-care, Nourishing Space Within: Essentials of Self-Care.

Castor Oil Pack

Castor oil packs aid in elimination and detoxification processes in the body, through some mechanism that is likely related to its anodyne, numbing, and anti-inflammatory properties. You can find castor oil at most natural food stores or in pharmacies. Look for cold-pressed and ideally organic.

Castor oil packs are supportive for many different issues such as uterine fibroids, benign ovarian cysts, headaches, liver disorders, abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, intestinal disorders, gallbladder inflammation or stones, nighttime urinary frequency, and inflamed joints. Consult your physician before using castor oil packs during pregnancy, active ulcers, or if you have bleeding disorders.

You can find castor oil at most natural food stores or in pharmacies. Look for cold-pressed and ideally organic versions. Results are cumulative and best when the pack is applied nightly or at least four nights in a row each week.

Supplies:
-Clean, dry flannel cloth or hand towel, made of cotton or wool (it should be large enough to cover your abdomen from your pelvis to just below your sternum)
-Hot water bottle or heating pack made of flax, rice, or gel
-Castor oil, organic and cold-pressed is best
-One or two old, large towels
-Blanket
-Large plastic bag with zipper closure

Directions:
Fold the cloth so that it fits over your entire abdomen. If there are breast or lung issues, the cloth will need to cover the entire chest and abdomen.
Lay down in a comfortable position on an old towel with all your supplies near you. The towel will prevent staining your bed. Castor oil stains are difficult to remove, so be cautious.
Drizzle 1 or 2 tablespoons of castor oil on the cloth. Fold the cloth in half to disperse the oil, then unfold and apply to the abdomen and/or chest. Cover castor oil cloth with an old towel.

Note that in the first couple of weeks, you may need to add an additional tablespoon of oil every few days. Eventually, the cloth will be saturated enough that reapplication of oil will only be needed every couple of weeks. The cloth should NOT be dripping. It should have just enough oil, so if you were to touch the compress to a piece of wood, it would polish the wood with no drips or runs.

Place a heating pack over the towel. Cover yourself with a warm blanket.
Leave the castor oil pack on for 30 to 60 minutes. This is an excellent time to practice your breathing exercises, visualization, or meditation. Individuals with chemical sensitivity disorders may have more symptoms after using the castor oil pack, especially at the beginning of treatment, since it stimulates the process of elimination and detoxification. If this is true for you, start with only five minutes a day and slowly increase over time.

It is fine to fall asleep with the castor oil pack on, as long as you are not using an electrical heating source.

When done, you may leave the oil on the skin to completely absorb (I recommend this option), or remove the oil with a solution of 2 tablespoons baking soda to 1 quart of water, or hair conditioner can be applied alone works well. There should only be a thin layer of oil left on the skin after the pack.
When you are done, store the pack in a large plastic bag with an air-tight closure. The castor oil pack can be used repeatedly. If the smell or color changes, dispose of the pack and create another.

NEED A STARTER PACK to get going? Check out Dr. Allegra’s Self-Care Starter Pack here!

As always, thank you for reading and sharing this post. If you know someone who can benefit, please pass this information along.

In Health,

Resources:
Dr. Allegra’s Self-Care Start Kit includes organic castor oil, an organic cotton pack, dry skin brush, and a copy of her book, Nourishing Space Within, to help guide you to better health. Check it out here!

Why You Need to Start Dry Skin Brushing Today

Why You Need to Start Dry Skin Brushing Today

Q: “SHOULD I DRY SKIN BRUSH?” 

DR ALLEGRA SAYS….

A: Short answer= YES

Dry skin brushing is my favorite way to help detoxify your skin, boost your immune system, and help your skin glow.

Don’t you love it when all those benefits go together?

BENEFITS OF DRY SKIN BRUSHING

  • Reduce cellulite
  • Support detoxification
  • Speed healing
  • Exfoliates
  • Increase circulation
  • Balance bacteria on your skin
  • Increase oxygenation to your skin

HOW TO CHOOSE A BRUSH…

First, you need a natural fiber brush like this one. This one is available through my apothecary. When choosing a dry skin brush you want it to just have a little bit of give in the bristles. You can see it’s just moving a bit while I press on it (in the video), but it’s still pretty firm.

WHAT DOES DRY SKIN BRUSHING DO?

Dry skin brushing acts as a street sweeper. The brush is a natural way to help sweep the streets of your lymph vessels. Your lymphatic system is your garbage collector system helping your body collect and get rid of waste and toxins. When lymphatic fluid starts moving it also helps to draw blood flow to your skin. This increased blood flow helps the lymph fluid to pick up cellular waste AND brings more nutrients to your skin to help with tissue repair. Such repairs are essential to help reduce congestion that can lead to cellulite and pain.

HOW DO I USE A SKIN BRUSH?

This natural fiber brush and make little short strokes starting from your fingertips and move slowly up each arm. Keep moving in short little strokes up each arm and then from your toes up each leg. up your trunk. We’re focusing on funneling towards your heart.

We want all your lymphatic fluid to go towards where it can then be dumped into your heart. From your heart, the fluid is then pumped down to your kidneys which do their job by filter out the waste and toxins and reabsorbing nutrients back for recirculation.

https://youtu.be/u5PoF_zEA20

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE?

It takes just a couple of minutes to do this quick sequence. This special sequence helps to get your skin glowing!

WHEN SHOULD I BRUSH?

The best time to get your lymphatic system moving is before a shower or before you go to bed.

BUT for some people it can feel very invigorating, if this is true for you, do this special sequence in the morning.

WHY IS DR. ALLEGRA’S APOTHECARY SKIN BRUSH IDEAL?

My brush is a bit more gentle compared to other body brushes on the market. Other brushes can be very firm and too aggressive for sensitive skin.

CAN I BRUSH EVERY PART OF MY BODY?

Make sure you avoid any rashes, open wounds, areas of skin that are easily damaged, areas of known skin malignancies or lymphatic malignancies, your face and eyes, and open and weeping rashes.

Start here with Dr. Allegra’s Self-Care Starter Pack!
This pack includes the tools you need to amplify your health!
1.  Dry Skin Brush
2.  Organic Cotton Cloth for a castor oil pack
3. Organic Castor Oil to apply to your pack.
4. Dr. Allegra’s bestselling book, Nourishing Space Within: Essentials of Self-Care, to teach you how to use these tools easily and effectively!

We all can use healthier options.

When will you start?

In Health,

We all need a little help….with our digestion

A majority of people who come into my office have some sort of digestive issue. This is why digestive enzymes can be so helpful to so many different people.

70 to 80% of your immune system is located in your gut. This is why it is so important to start with building a healthy diet first. When you have a healthy digestive system, then your immune system is stronger. When your immune system is stronger, you have the ability to be more flexible with all types of pathogenic exposure.

A digestive enzyme can help you build your digestive function, by helping you break down your food more fully. When you were able to break down your food more fully, you have access to more nutrients. When you have access to more nutrients, you have more building blocks to use to help your body heal. When you have more nutritional building blocks available, your immune system has more resources to run itself properly. When you have more access to the nutritional building blocks, your metabolism has more resources to run itself at a proper rate.

Naturopathic Physicians have long known that strong digestive function is the key to building a strong foundation of health.

Total Support Digestive Enzymes will help you break down fats, proteins, carbohydrates, dairy, and gluten better.

Of course, if you are allergic to nuts, dairy, or wheat, you still need to avoid these foods completely. If you avoid some of these foods due to allergy, autoimmune disease, or intolerance, these enzymes will help you break down any inadvertent exposure that you might have. This will reduce the inflammatory reaction that can occur from consuming foods that you are sensitive.

Why You Should Care About Inflammation


Why do you need to be concerned about inflammation?

Inflammation is the body’s reaction to initiate healing. The problem with inflammation occurs when this reaction is constant. This is a large problem in our modern societies. Inflammation happens to bring about healing but when it continues beyond is normal parameters it limits heal.

What is inflammation?

The best way I can describe it is to give examples. I am sure you have had a cold before. That cold may have been accompanied by a sore throat. Your throat may have felt swollen and red and hot. This is the reaction of inflammation. The purpose is to sequester any pathogens in the area and not let it spread to the rest of your body. This is very helpful, but for true and lasting healing to begin we must balance inflammation and reduce it in the long run.

Why should you care about inflammation?

Cancers of all kinds start as inflammation. This is why it is so important to address inflammation at its early stages rather than let it progress into something malignant.

This is why is it so important to utilize anti-inflammatory herbs and nutrients. Our modern world has so many stressors that push inflammation and we must balance that with extra nutritional and herbal support.

This is why this anti-inflammatory, Advanced anti-inflammatory complex, is the most frequently prescribed supplement in my dispensary.

This can be a tremendous support if there is any chronic inflammation such as joint pain, cancer, cardiovascular disease, cellulitis, frequent infections, digestive disturbances, chronic pain in all forms, and even anxiety and depression.

Start reducing your inflammation today!

What is a serum and should I use one?

Q: “What is a serum? Should I use one?”

This is a question I get a lot. The short answer is yes, you should be using a serum.
First, let’s answer the part. Serums are a comprehensive approach to anti-aging, increasing collagen production, reducing inflammation, and boosting hydration. It is like a multi-tasking multi-vitamin for your skin.
Adding a facial serum may feel intimidating at first when you see the larger price tag. But after considering all the benefits, from banishing blemishes, smoothing wrinkles, increasing hydration, you may just change your mind.

 

Serums have a high concentration of active ingredients and a little goes a long way. The best serums are packed with antioxidants, anti-inflammatories, college builders, and hydration boosters.

 

Regular use of a serum regularly can give your skin a firmer, smoother texture, reduce pore size, and increase moisture levels.

 

Serums are not built to moisturize alone but work best when sealed in with a moisturizer or cream.

 

Best results come from using a serum twice daily after cleansing. Warm a pea-sized amount of serum between your fingers and gently press into your skin from forehead to your chest.

 

Not all serums are created equal. Make sure your serum does more than one thing. Common promoted actions are brightening, clarifying, collagen boosting, or anti-aging.

 

I feel the best serums are excellent multi-taskers and do all those actions.

Look for ingredients like these:
Aloe vera helps your skin heal faster and soothes irritations.[i]

Bamboo
helps to firm and strengthen your skin. It is packed with antioxidants that reduce fine lines and wrinkles.[ii]

Peptides are pieces of protein that when blended with other antioxidants and nutrient-dense herbs deliver targeted benefits such as boosting collagen production and elasticity to your skin.

Best results come from using a serum twice daily after cleansing. Warm a pea-sized amount of serum between your fingers and gently press into your skin from forehead to your chest.

I formulated the Rejuvenating Serum No. 3 to be a multi-tasking giant. It helps your skin hold hydrations better, reduces pore size, increases elasticity, reduces redness, balances skin tone, boosts collagen, reduces fine lines and wrinkles, and promotes rapid regeneration of your skin- all in one little bottle.