Given the sedentary lifestyle now in society, body pains have become quite common these days. And it’s not the old. Even young people – some in their 30s – are increasingly becoming prone to body aches.
While traditional massages have existed for years now in the community, several kinds of oils and tonics are now recommended by traditional healers for relaxation of muscles and joints.
Hence, with an aim to promote value addition among local entrepreneurs in the State, the department of Sericulture had opened a processing unit of castor oil and demonstration centre at the directorate here in 2020.
Speaking to Nagaland Post, deputy director Alemkumzuk said the purpose of promoting castor oil was that people tended to use massage oils from unknown sources.
He maintained that the unit served as a platform to local entrepreneurs and farmers to come and take up marketing opportunity as the product was known to have huge potential in the global market. He said the department procured castor seeds from the farmers at Rs 100 per kg, after which oil was extracted from them. The cakes or leftovers of the seeds, which were said to be filled with nutrients, were used as fertilisers and were in high demand among flower growers in the State Capital.
He mentioned that castor oil was also known for its anti-bacterial and therapeutic properties, which not only improved blood circulation but also was recommended for treating arthritis and joint pains as well.
The department had extracted oil up to approximately 5,000 litres of castor oil, while Nagaland Packing Solutions, a private firm based out of Dimapur, looked after bottling and packaging and charged Rs 40 per bottle. These were then sold to entrepreneurs, who acted as the bridge between the department and shops. The products had been made available in stores like Made in Nagaland, Kiwi outlets, Naturally Nagaland, etc, the deputy director explained.
Castor plantation is spread over 4,000 hectares across the State, especially in Tuensang, Kiphire, Dimapur, Nuiland, Tseminyu, Noklak and Zunheboto districts.
With presence of nutrients like calcium, magnesium, sulphur, iron, zinc and copper, etc, castor oil is beneficial for hair and skin, and also has massage benefits, besides boosting immunity and increase in the flow of circulatory system.
Pouring castor oil after adding a pinch of baking soda in it in cysts, corns and moles helps in dissolving and removing them. Also, castor oil can be used as a natural hair mask after mixing one tablespoon of it with olive oil and lemon juice.
Meanwhile, N Michael Dzuvichu, who practises physiotherapy, explained that castor oil helped in lymphatic drainage, leading the toxins and waste products from the blood and the serum from the lymph nodes to the kidney and through it throws these out of the body, thus purifying blood and the body.
He claimed that castor oil relieved both mental and physical stress and recommended its use.