How to Make and Use Castor Oil Packs

“There’s as much of God in a teaspoonful of Palma Christi (literally translated as “the hand of Christ” is another name for castor oil) as there is in a prayer!”, Edgar Cayce “”.

Disclaimer: Always consult with your doctor before trying any of these techniques described in this article. This is not medical advice and should not be used to diagnose, treat or as a substitute for medical care.

Castor Oil is said to be the world’s oldest and most valuable herbal remedy. It can be documented as far back as 4000 BC  where castor seeds have even been discovered in ancient tombs for good health. Used for thousands of years to treat a myriad of conditions and improve the health of countless civilizations throughout history, being documented in 1500 BC in an Egyptian medical text as a use to protect the eyes from irritation.

In more modern times, the rediscovery of this healing elixir was made popular by “The sleeping profit” Edgar Cayce, who recommended castor oil packs to many of his more than 14,000 readings of patients, documented at the Association for Research and Enlightenment, Inc., in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Cayce recommended castor oil packs for:

aphonia, appendicitis, arthritis, cancer, cerebral palsy, cholecystitis, cholecystalgia, cirrhosis of the liver, colitis, constipation, epilepsy, gallstones, gastritis, hepatitis, hernias, Hodgkin’s disease, hookworm, intestinal impaction, lymphitis, migraine, multiple sclerosis, neuritis, Parkinson’s disease, pelvic cellulitis, ringworm, sluggish liver, stenosis of the duodenum, sterility, strangulation of kidneys, stricture of the duodenum, and uremia. In addition, there are many cases listed under “lesions,” “incoordination,” “intestines,” “toxemia,” “eliminations,” and “adhesions.”

Edgar Cayce’s used castor oil packs to improve assimilations, eliminations, and circulation (especially of the lymphatic system) and theorized the effectiveness of castor oil packs is due to the strengthening of the Peyer’s Patches, which are tiny patches of lymphatic tissue in the mucosal surface of the small intestine and constituents of the body’s immune system.

According to Cayce, the Peyer’s Patches produce a substance that facilitates electrical contact between the autonomous and the cerebrospinal nervous system when it reaches those areas via the bloodstream. Our liver produces one-third to one-half of the lymphatic fluid in our bodies and needs to be kept in good shape. The lymphatic system is one of the major channels for absorption from the gastrointestinal tract; its main function being the absorption of fats.

This theory has recently been confirmed through current research. A double-blind study in a report entitled Immunomodulation through Castor Oil Packs published in a recent issue of the Journal of Naturopathic Medicine examined lymphocyte values of 36 healthy subjects before and after topical castor oil application. This study identified castor oil as an anti-toxin, and as having impact on the lymphatic system, enhancing immunological function. The study found an increase in the number of total lymphocytes. This increase represents a general boost in the body’s defense, since lymphocytes actively defend the body by forming antibodies against pathogens and their toxins.

What are castor oil packs?

To make a castor oil pack, you simply take a wool or flannel cloth, fold it to make about 4 layers.

The cloth should be about 12”x24”.  

Next, you saturate the cloth with cold-pressed organic castor oil. The cloth should be saturated but not to the point that the oil is dripping off the cloth. The first time the flannel is used, it will require a large amount of castor oil to saturate it, however, the flannel can be used for multiple times. You only need to reapply castor oil as the flannel dries out.

Cayce recommended heating the pack1 before placing it on the body. The easiest way to do this is to use a heating pad. Plug it in and turn it on, then place plastic wrap or a trash bag over it, so you protect the heating pad from getting oil on it (Do not use a plastic shopping bag from a supermarket or a drug store, as they tend to have dies and ink on them). Then put the flannel saturated with castor oil on top of the heating pad for 10-15 minutes prior to applying it to the body. Do not leave unattended.  Heat is not recommended with active infections, bleeding, excessive gas or a recent injury (less than 48 hours old) and do not heat the pack in a microwave oven.

Once the cloth is properly heated, placement of the pack is dependent on the ailment, but for general use, is usually placed over the liver. The location is on the right side of the abdomen, from the sternum (breastbone) to about 4 inches below the belly button and should extend from the midline of the body as it wraps around the right side of the torso. Place the pack directly on the skin, followed by your plastic wrap or garbage bag and then your heat source. You can use a hot water bottle but a heating pad works best. Leave the pack on for at least 1 hour. Be careful not to fall asleep during this time. It is a good idea to use this time to concentrate on healing. You can use a guided meditation, healing essential oils like lavender or soft music. The key is to create a stress free environment that is favorable to healing.

Once your time is up, you can simply remove the pack and store it in a glass jar, Tupperware or sealed in a plastic bag and kept in the refrigerator. You can either clean the excess oil left on the skin of the treated area with a solution of one cup of warm water and one teaspoon of baking soda, or you can simply rub it into the skin.  The same castor oil pack may be used again for additional treatments after being re- saturated with oil. Be sure to keep the pack out of the sun and in a cool dark place. Castor oil packs can stay good for up to six months to a year, providing it does not become rancid or soiled. It is recommended that the castor oil pack be used and re-used by the same individual, and not shared with others. The flannel pack should be replaced when it appears soiled, as may happen when the area being treated is particularly toxic.

How long do I need to use a castor oil pack?

A schedule of three days in a row using the pack, followed by four days off, for three weeks is common, depending on how bad the ailment. After three weeks, take a week off and then repeat the cycle. If it is known that there is an unusually high degree of toxicity in the body, or a significant difficulty in eliminating toxins (such as with kidney failure), then it is best if the packs are used on alternating days for the first week. After that, usually the packs may be used on consecutive days from that point on.

Castor oil pack treatments have no real side effects. The most common issue in rare cases are skin rashes that may occur at the site of the pack. This typically only occurs during the first few applications and may be relieved by using the baking soda wash. If a rash occurs, they usually indicate that the elimination of toxins through the system are not good, and perhaps the pack should be used on alternate days for the first week of use.


While castor oil packs are safe and effective, some conditions and symptoms should avoid the use. These include pregnancy, bleeding or open wounds, during menstruation, ulcers. Heat should not be used in conditions where it is normally contraindicated, as in the treatment of appendicitis, diabetic neuropathy, or over the abdomen during pregnancy.

How to get the most out of my castor oil pack treatment?

Colonics, together with castor oil packs and manipulation, are truly the distinctive hallmark of the Cayce drugless therapy. If you do not have access to colonics, you can try the following;

1) Before Breakfast, on an empty stomach, have 1-2 Tbsp. Epsom Salt (magnesium sulfate) is dissolved in a large glass of warm filtered water. Be sure to use food-grade Epsom salt, with no added oils, fragrances, or extras). The goal of this flush is to clean out your intestines until they are releasing mostly, or only, water. If you do this cleanse for 2 days, you will reach the point of only water. It is very important to drink a lot of water with salt!!! The magnesium will draw water into your intestines and be dehydrating.

The drawing of water into the intestines is what causes the intestines to clean out. Epsom salts cleansing, should not be performed more than one time in 30 days, or on a continual basis. Epsom salts should not be taken orally by anyone with digestive disorders, acid reflux, Crohn’s Disease, or anyone who has more than 3 bowel movements daily. You should have a bowel movement within three hours and this can continue throughout the day, so be sure to do this on a day when you can be near a bathroom. This method is preferred over a saltwater flush (see below) because the Magnesium makes muscles feel relaxed and it won’t leave you with a bloated feeling.

2) The instructions for a saltwater cleanse are basically the same.  Begin by heating the water until it is very warm, but not boiling. Pour warm water into a large jar or mug. Stir in 2 teaspoons of salt until salt is completely dissolved. Add lemon to reduce the nasty taste. Try to drink the water/salt mix within 5 minutes. You should feel the urge to go to the bathroom soon after. Try to hold off going for 20-30 minutes for your body to absorb all the salt. Your bowel movement will most likely be very runny and watery. After your flush is finished, be sure to rehydrate, coconut water is a good option.

Always use good quality sea salt or pink salt. Common table salt has additives, depleted of natural minerals, usually includes anti-caking agents, maybe fluoridated. Don’t exceed doing this cleanse more than 1-2 times a month. 

3) And finally, if the first two alternatives don’t work for you, you can try salt and baking soda enema. Begin with three quarts filtered water. Add a level teaspoonful of sea salt or pink salt (NOT TABLE SALT) and a heaping teaspoonful of baking soda. Split the enema into three 1-quart enemas, with the last enema containing a tablespoon of EVOO or Castor oil. Allow the enema to remain in the bowel as long as possible.