J is for Juniper Berry. The Who What When Where and Why of using Juniper Berry Essential Oil

This little nugget is a well kept secret, but Juniper Berry Essential Oil packs a punch with a myriad of emotional and physical uses to benefit you and your home.

If your looking for a natural solution to a series of ailments including fluid retention, urinary tract infections, abdominal bloating, menstrual cramping, heavy legs, detoxifying, cellulite, gout, rheumatism, arthritis, acne, ulceration, eczema, mental exhaustion, chronic fatigue , anxiety or tension  inJuniper Berry or Juniperus Communis can be a great resource. (Worwood, The Complete Book, 1991, p 549), as it is analgesic, anthelmintic, anti inflammatory, antiseptic, caminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, nervine, spasmolytic and tonic.   But WTF does all that mean in laymen’s terms… lets go through it.

Who Started this Phenomon?

Juniper was used to burn as incense in Tibet for both religious and medicinal purposes, and was used to ward off evil spirits.  Historically it was also used as a disinfectant in times of plague or other contagious diseases.  The French burned a mixture of juniper and rosemary twigs in hospital wards to purify the air and in Yugoslavia, juniper oil was a cure all in their traditional folk medicine.  Then there is my favorite use, making GIN. (shout out to The Botanist) my favorite gin at the moment. Not just because the bottle is beautiful, but because they are from the Isle of Islay, which also happens to be my favorite hashtag right now ( #ISlay )  Not to mention it tastes sooo effing good with some lime essential oil on the rocks in the heat of the summer, or with a little tonic sitting by the fire in the winter.

For the astrologers out there, Juniper Berry Essential Oil falls under the astrological signs of Pisces and Libra and is ruled by the planets Jupiter, Neptune and Venus (Lembo, The Essential Oil Guide to Vibrational Healing, 2016, p127).   Libra’s in our trying to always be in balance often suffer from lower back and kidney pain, no wonder this is our oil.

Interestingly, a juniper branch was traditionally hung on doors the eve of May Day to ward off witchcraft.  In Italy it was burned on Christmas Eve to deflect the evil eye.  Who isn’t about warding off the evil eye, I mean really.  Seriously, I’m about to plant a juniper berry plant in the front yard so I can burn the berries and ward it off too.

What is Juniper Berry Essential Oil?

The juniper is a small evergreen tree or shrub with short spiny leaves.  It matures at 4-6 feet in height and is often found in chalky or limy soils.  The oil is steam distilled from the small berries that are similar to black currants in appearance.  The berries turn from green to a deep purple when ripe.  Beware, there are also oils derived from the wood of the plant, but the oil from the wood doesn’t have the same intensity of therapeutic values (Tisserand, The Art of Aromatherapy, 1977, p241).

When to use Juniper Berry Essential Oil

Well the olds (I’m talking the super olds, as proof of their language) say this:

“The berries are hot in the third degree, and dry in the first being counter-poison, and a resister of the pestilence and excellent against the bites of venomous beasts: it provokes urine, and is available in dysenteries and strangury.  It is a remedy against dropsy, and brings down the terms, helps the fits of the mother, expels the wind, and strengthens the stomach.  Indeed there is no  better remedy for with in any part of the body, or the colic, than the chymical oil (essential Oil) drawn from the berries.  They are good for cough, shortness of breath, consumption, pains in the belly, rupture, cramps, confulsions…. the berries stay all fluxes, help the haemorrhids or piles, and kill worms in children (Niholas Culpeper),

In more recent (and FDA Compliant) times it is said to support healthy kidney and urinary tract function, it reduces the appearance of skin blemishes and acts as a natural skin toner, and it is a natural cleansing and detoxifying agent and also helps to promote a healthy complexion…Yes Please!

While we’re on the topic of purification and detoxification, it is also said to cleanse and purify your aura specifically working on your crown, Third eye and Navel Chakras and can relieve your mind of repetitive negative thought patterns.

Where do you use Juniper Berry Essential Oil

  1. So My top 5 Uses for Juniper Berry Essential Oil:
  2. Put a drop in my toner to make my skin tone
  3. Diffuse with Bergamot to promote feelings of calmness and self assurance.
  4. Use in meditation to break ties to anything (including internal dialogue) that is holding you back.
  5. Apply (using proper dilution) to the bottom of my feet after an evening spent with the Botanist or over indulgence in any adult beverage.

 

Massage Blend to Help Reduce Fluid Retention

Mix together:

  • 15 drops Cypress Essential Oil
  • 10 drops Lemon Essential Oil
  • 5 drops Juniper Berry  Essential Oil

Let them mix together as the synergy of the three oils together is where the most benefit comes from.

Add this mixture to 3 TBSP of Sweet almond oil and massage from feet upward towards torso, then from fingertips up arms toward torso, which helps with lymphatic drainage and reduces fluid retention as well as cellulite dispersal (Worwood, The Complete Book, 1991, p 413).

Anti-cellulite Bath

While getting rid of Cellulite is a multi faceted project, baths along with the above massaging can help with that.

Dissolve 1 cup Epson Salt and 1/2 cup of Sea Salt in your bath.

Mix the following Essential Oils together:

  • 6 drops Juniper Berry Essential Oil
  • 10 Drops Lemon Essential Oil
  • 10 drops Grapefruit Essential oil
  • 8 drops Basil Essential oil

Dilute 5 drops of this mixture to 1 tsp of sweet almond oil or jojoba Oil  and add to your bath.  If any of the oil is floating on the top of the water, scoop it up and massage it in to the cellulite prone areas.

 

Contraindications: Don’t use Juniper Berry Essential Oil if you are pregnant or nursing and avoid in cases of Kidney disease.  Just be cool! Check with your physician, this blog is never meant to treat, diagnose or cure anything other than your curiosity about essential oils.  For Medical advice, talk to your Medical professional.

 

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