COMMON NAMES: HACKMATACK, HORSE SAVIN, GORST, AITEN IT IS SPREAD ANYWHERE IN EUROPE AND ASIA. ITS EUROPEAN OCCURRENCE IS NEARLY COSMOPOLITAN.
It can be found from lowlands up to mountain regions (Monte Rosa 3700 m a.s.l.). The Juniper’s healing glory originated in the Middle Ages when the Arabs made an unusual Juniper jam, presented in some older pharmacopoeias until now. For a long time, Juniper was associated with ritual purge and burnt in temples as a part of regular purging rituals. Several pharmacopoeias remained preserved on Egyptian papyruses coming from 1550 B.C.
Internally it is used for urinary tract inflammations, flatulence and dyspepsia (digestive disorder – fermentation and putrefaction processes prevail in the intestines). It improves metabolism in joints which, together with its diuretic properties, predetermines it for the treatment of joint rheumatism. The part used is the berry (galbulus).
Essential oil is rich in monoterpenes – above all the terpinol.
In SwissGel formula it is used for:
- Rheumatic pains
- Muscle pains
- Speeds up convalescence
- Arthritis and gout
- Chronic rheumatism
- Juniper berries were used as a medicine in many cultures for a long time.
- The berries are effective as a strong disinfectant of the urinary tract when eaten.
- Native American Indians used them as a herbal medicine for the urinary tract infections.
- Western tribes blended the Juniperus communis berries with the Barbery root (Berberis) to make herbal tea for diabetes treatment.
- The indigenous American inhabitants use the juniper as contraception for women.
- Even at the beginning of the 20th century, Juniper berries were used in home-made beer production.
- The Juniper berries were employed in the preparation of spirit – in Poland and Slovakia, above all in the White Carpathians region, where the popular gin was made.
- Juniper essential oil has excellent cleansing properties, helping the urinary tract diseases; it cleanses blood, is antiseptic for the air passages, soothes muscle and rheumatic pains and encourages perspiration.