Local couple markets old-time remedy8 Comments
After it is extracted by a machine, the pulpy mass is then boiled for a long time and allowed to set, at which stage the castor oil rises to the top which is the 'mud settling'.
BERNARD LODGE, St Catherine:RICARDO THOMPSON and spouse Shirley Lindo produce castor oil using the cold-press system which sees the seed being crushed and the oil mechanically extracted and water added before boiling. This purification process is very important given that in its natural state the seed is highly toxic due to the presence of ricin, a deadly poison.
Thompson explained that with the water added, it must be allowed to boil properly and settle for some time, after which the oil rises on top of the "mud" and this is skimmed and placed in another container for further processing. "Done properly, it comes out the way you want it to be without the dark colour or offensive smell."
After many years of trial and error, they have the formula worked out, but many clients are still hooked on the castor oil of old and so raising public awareness is an ongoing process. This, according to Shirley, includes educating people to the value of castor oil being much more than just a laxative or hair product. In marketing their Palm of Christ brand, she shares the wide range of benefits from this anti-fungal, antiviral and anti-inflammatory product.
It has been a hard sell though, she explains: "They say castor oil no look so. Castor oil can't stay so, it nuh black? Why it nuh thick and smell strong. What we have done, though, is produce two shades of oil. Among people who are familiar with the old castor oil, the darker one will sell because them say it looks like the real one. The lighter colour one, they say is olive oil, we put in the bottle."
don't promote drinking
Despite its effectiveness as a laxative, the couple does not promote this use of their brand, as Shirley explains: "We do not put it on our bottles that you drink it because we cannot quantify how much of it you should drink. This, especially if it is not boiled properly, will really give you the runs, really. Our oil does not give you too much of that - it's a gentle laxative, much more so than the ones that are traditionally parched, beaten and then boiled."
Checks on a number of Internet sites confirm claims by Shirley and Ricardo as to the many everyday health benefits of castor oil such as the following:
Ringworm - undecylenic acid, which is one of the active compounds of castor oil, helps fight ringworm, a fungal infection.
Skin problems - castor oil contains ricinoleic acid, which delivers anti-inflammatory benefits to the skin. It provides treatment for minor cuts, burns, abrasions, sunburn and prevents skin disorders such as acne and eczema. Aside from these, one of the benefits of castor oil is in skin conditioning. It serves as a natural emollient, which stimulates the production of collagen and elastin that hydrates and moisturises the skin. It treats wrinkles, repairing and rejuvenating the skin to make it look flawless and smoother.
In addition, castor oil is a remedy for more serious health conditions, which include sciatic nerve pain. The oil relieves sciatia, a painful condition characterised by lower back pains and soreness in your lower limbs.
A therapeutic benefit of castor oil is hair growth treatment as it helps increase hair growth and makes it healthier, softer, shinier and fuller. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, castor oil is useful for massaging arthritic joints and sore, tired muscles.
In addition, castor oil is also believed to deliver medical benefits to certain neurological problems, such as Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and cerebral palsy.
With the many health benefits of castor oil, it is no wonder why it is one of the most beneficial oils available. Used properly, castor oil is truly a valuable, organic remedy that can help improve your body's physical fitness, vigour and overall wellness.