How To Use Juniper Berries in Herbal Medicine

Juniper berries have a wide variety of uses on the homestead including making homemade spirits and herbal medicine. Read more on how to utilize this plant.

ReadyNutrition Readers, we are going to expound on some of the merits of Juniper berries, from the plant Juniperus communis.  They aren’t actually a “berry,” but are a part of a cone in the Juniper plant.  The berries are used to make gin: that is, alcohol such as grain is infused with juniper berries and leaves and then redistilled to add the flavor of the plant, thus creating the gin.

The Juniper berry is also used in herbal medicine.  Juniper is used as a diuretic, and to treat menstrual problems and bladder infections/UTI’s (Urinary Tract Infections).

Juniper in Herbal Medicine

The dosage of Juniper Berries is 2 to 10 grams of the berries, or between 20 to 100 mg of the essential oil.  The berries and twigs can also be used for a tea, but be careful to consume no more than 2 cups of it.  Also, if you’ve never had it before, you should take in a small amount, in case you’re hypersensitive/allergic to it.  Pregnant women and anyone prescribed for Lithium need to avoid consumption of Juniper berries, as well as those with kidney problems.  Also, do not allow Juniper berries to be used on open wounds.

They are green when they are immature and dark/purple upon being mature and ripe.  It is in this latter state they are safe to use.  Juniper berries are used to flavor Norwegian, Swedish, German, Austrian, Polish, and Czech dishes, such as different sauerkraut, roasts, and game meatsJuniperus sabina is a type that grows in central and southern Europe, as well as in Asia.  All parts of this subspecies are poisonous.

There, as you can see by the photo above are the berries turning color from green to purple.  Here’s another photo that shows the plant (the Juniper bush) with the berries turning to purple:

Juniper berry oil is a strong antioxidant.  In order to make essential oils of it, you need to distill the oil from it.  Pinene (technically Alpha-Pinene) from the berry is not only an antioxidant, but you can make bug repellant from it.  That’s right!  It is highly repellant to insects.

How To Make a Juniper Infusion

To make a tea (infusion), you can crush 1 teaspoon of berries and add this to 1 cup of boiled water after taking it off boil and sitting for 1 minute.  They can also be used in compresses to treat gout, as well as being used to reduce warts.  Consult with your physician before undertaking any information in this article.  Juniper berries will be ready when they are purple.  They are strong to the taste, but there are a lot of things that can be done with them.  Happy gathering!  JJ out!


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This article was originally published at Ready Nutrition™ on September 9th, 2017