Juniper berries: medicinal properties and contraindications

Juniper berry is an evergreen plant that grows in the Northern Hemisphere. Prefers stony slopes. In the people it is also called veresa or archa. The medicinal properties of this plant have been known since ancient times. The glory of his use spread throughout ancient Rome, Egypt and Greece. The fruits of juniper are used today both in cooking and in medicine. Let's try to figure out what juniper berries have medicinal properties and contraindications?

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Juniper is a member of the cypress family. It grows in the form of a shrub up to 4 m in height or a small multi-stemmed tree, reaching a height of up to 8 m. The plant has a red-brown or grayish bark, needle-like leaves located annularly 0.5-2 cm long. At the ends of branches of this evergreen plant are male inflorescences, yellow in the form of spikelets up to 4 mm long. In the axils of leaves of branches, female inflorescences are located, which in May-June are tied in green berries. Ripe juniper fruit of black and blue color is 5-9 mm in size and is called a pine cone.

When do fruits ripen? Maturation occurs after 2-3 years. The plant begins to bear fruit usually from the age of 5.For medicinal purposes, the berries of blue juniper and its branches are used.

When to pick berries? Fruit is harvested in autumn. The berries are torn off or shaken off the bush to the previously prepared sacking. They are sorted and dried. Dried berries are stored, 3 years.

Useful composition

The fruit of the bush contains the following components:

  • essential oils and colorants;
  • sugar;
  • resins;
  • microelements;
  • is an organic acid.

Needles of the plant contain ascorbic acid in large quantities.

The healing properties of

Thanks to the ingredients in the composition, the berries have the following useful properties:

  1. Diuretic. Essential oils increase the glomerular filtration of the kidneys.
  2. Laxative.
  3. Anti-inflammatory, antipyretic and disinfectant.
  4. Cholerozoic. The substance terpineol, which is part of the fruit, increases the bile secretion and bile formation.
  5. Expectorant: it can dilute sputum.
  6. Toning.
  7. Painkiller.
  8. Stimulant digestion: increases appetite and normalizes the production of gastric juice.

The above medicinal properties have found application in medicine. Consider what helps this plant.

The bush fruits are used to cure future diseases:

  • gout;
  • pathology of the kidney and urinary system;
  • edema;
  • of malaria;
  • of nervous disorders;
  • rheumatism and metabolic polyarthritis;
  • inflammation of the joints;
  • respiratory diseases, tuberculosis;
  • pathologies of the heart and blood vessels;
  • scurvy and inflammation of the gums.

In addition, with the help of juniper, diathesis, allergies, scabies, dermatitis, eczema and lichen are treated. Fruits can be used to increase lactation in lactating women.

Use in Cooking

The fruit of the plant has found application not only in medicine. It is indispensably used for culinary purposes in various countries of Europe. Fruits have a peculiar taste and weak coniferous aroma. Spices from juniper are used for smoking and frying fish, meat and poultry. It is used in marinades, sauces, broths and dressings. Of the fruits are brewed tea, brewed compote and mors. How to brew tea: soften 1 teaspoon of berries and pour 200 ml of boiling water. After 10 minutes, tea is ready. In some countries, shrub fruits are used in the preparation of alcoholic beverages: vodka, tinctures, liqueurs, gin.

Contraindications for use

Despite its medicinal properties, juniper berries can harm the human body.

Their admission is prohibited in the following cases:

  • to pregnant women, as it can provoke a miscarriage;
  • with an ulcer flowing in an acute form;
  • patients with acute forms of various pathologies of the urinary system.

Important! You do not need to abuse berries. Take them strictly in accordance with the dosage. Otherwise, the fruit can provoke poisoning.

Ways of using

Invaluable use of juniper fruit has found its application in medicine. They can be bought at pharmacy kiosks or collected and dried on their own.

Warning! There is a poisonous plant variety - Cossack juniper with dark brown berries.

The fruit of the bush is used differently. Is it possible to eat berries? To improve the blood red berry berries can be chewed. However, you need to do this only after consulting a doctor.

For relieving pain in muscles and joints with rheumatism it is recommended to take a bath with a decoction of cones of juniper. About 200 g of berries, boiled in 2 liters of water, are enough for one bath.

Tincture on berries is effectively used for cough and bronchitis. Tampons soaked in tincture are prescribed for the treatment of a diseased ear. Alcohol-based berries are used for herpes.

Effective folk recipes

Having learned what fruit fruits are useful for, consider effective recipes, the main component in which they are.


2 tbsp. Spoons of fruits are flooded with water( 1 liter).Allow to boil and cook for 5-7 minutes. Ready to cool the broth and strain. To restore the menstrual cycle you need to eat every day on a dessert spoon every 2 hours.

Infusion of

15 g of fruit pour 250 ml of water. To warm up 10 minutes in a microwave or on a water bath. After that, add the liquid to the initial volume. Cough is recommended to take three times a day for 1 tbsp.l.

Ointment from berries

30 g of berries to insist 2 weeks in 150 ml of vodka. After the expiry of the period, the raw materials must be wrung out. The obtained ointment is effectively used for curing for cold sores on the lips( herpes).

Berry syrup

100 g of fruit are poured 400 ml of boiling water and sugar is added. In a water bath, boil until a concentrated syrup is obtained. This remedy is effective in the treatment of gastric pathologies. Dose: 3 times a day for 1 tbsp.spoon.

Juniper oil

Shredded pine cones and needles are poured with oil in a ratio of 1: 3 and infused for 10 days in a dark place. The resulting remedy is used in masks for healing hair or treating herpes.

Juniper honey

6 kg of honey honey mixed in a bag with 13 liters of warm water. Water is added a little at the same time, squeezing the honey with your hands.

Attention! So that the wax does not melt the water should not be hot.

Then pour into a bag 500 g of green juniper berries. There we put a clean stone, as a cargo, so that the sack is drowned in a bowler hat. We proceed to cooking, periodically removing the foam. The longer the honey is cooked, the sweeter it will be. Cool the cooked honey to pour into cans and tightly cork them. Honey is considered ready when it is fermented. Honey, cooked in this way, is stored for a long time and every year it tastes better.

Tincture juniper

This product is taken orally, it is used for the preparation of compresses, lotions, inhalations.

Important! Tincture activates blood flow to the digestive organs, so it is forbidden to take it to patients with erosive gastritis and stomach ulcers.

Recipe No. 1

50 g of honey and 10 g of fruit are mixed with vodka, in an amount of 1 liter. The agent is left for 10 days. Dosage: twice a day for 1 tbsp.l.

Recipe No. 2

200 g of crushed berries pour a liter of vodka and leave for 3 weeks in a dark place. Then the tincture must be filtered, poured into glass containers and kept in the refrigerator for 14 days. Eat 50 ml before eating. The received agent is effectively used for tuberculosis, pneumonia and other pathologies of respiratory organs.

  1. For pain relief with radiculitis, it is recommended to add 4-5 st. Spoon the tincture in the bath or apply compresses.
  2. For the treatment of rheumatism it is recommended to make foot baths with 2-3 tbsp.l.tinctures.
  3. To soften the cough, withdraw sputum from patients with bronchitis, add in 200 ml of hot milk for 1 teaspoon of tincture and honey. Drink twice a day.
  4. To eliminate inflammation in angina, it is recommended to mix squeezed juice from 1 lemon with 50 ml of medicinal tincture. Gargle with gauze. For oral administration, it is necessary to mix 8-10 drops of tincture with water in equal parts.
  5. For the treatment of lichen, rashes and other skin pathologies effectively use lotions with the remedy.

Juniper berries contain many useful ingredients, due to which they possess healing properties, however, before taking the product it is recommended to consult a doctor so that he determines the dosage to avoid poisoning.

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