BULGARIA. Juniper (Juniperus communis) Berries, Whole, Certified Organic
Common names: Common Juniper, Genévrier, Horse Savin, Ginepro, Enebro, Guata, Aarar, Borovica, Einir, Havusa, Hosh, Havuber, Fenja, Dhupi, Betar, Cadec, Machanel, Saru, Shug Pa, Vistra, Ou Zhou Ci Bai
Juniperus communis is a small evergreen tree or shrub, growing from around 4 to as much as 50 feet tall, found in cool temperate zones throughout most of the upper Northern Hemisphere, with a range that extends south into a few mountainous regions in the US, and includes most of Europe, north Asia and Japan, and higher altitudes in central and south Asia.
The cones produced by J. communis are commonly known as Juniper Berries, and have been used as food and medicine since ancient times. They are used to flavor gin and other beverages. The Greeks and Arabs are said to have given Juniper as a sedative, and many cultures have used it for purification and ritual cleansing. The berries are most renowned for their use in stimulating the flow of urine, as a treatment for bladder infections, to reduce fluid retention, or to relieve gout and other arthritic conditions.
Juniper’s antiseptic properties have been used to fight or prevent bacterial, viral, parasitic, and fungal infections, and help clear mucous discharges, especially from the genitourinary tract, and treat diarrhea. Aromatic Juniper Berries can aid digestion, and are said to bring on delayed menses and encourage uterine contractions in labor.
Dr. Christopher suggests that they may strengthen the pancreas, adrenal glands, nervous system, and memory. Dr. Sebastian Kneipp routinely began his classic nature cure regimen by advising most patients to chew on 6-10 Juniper Berries daily, as an alterative to boost the detoxification process.
Juniper Berry’s active components include volatile oils, tannins, flavonoids, alkaloids, glycosides, resins, phenolics, and terpenes. A review article details historical and research documentation for J. communis as diuretic, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, analgesic, hepatoprotective, antidiabetic and antihyperlipidemic, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antihypercholesterolemic, antibacterial, anticataleptic, and neuroprotective in Parkinson's disease. In vitro studies show Juniper’s anti-tumor actions against neuroblastoma, glioblastoma, and breast cancer cells.
Juniper Berries should be avoided during pregnancy, and they should not be used continuously for more than 6 weeks.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.