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Juniper Berry

Scientific name

Juniperus communis





Also called juniper bush, ginepro, enebro, common juniper, and zimbro.

Juniper is a coniferous evergreen with needle-like and/or scale-like leaves widely distributed throughout africa, asia, and in the mountains of central america. Junipers vary in size and shape from tall trees to low spreading shrubbery with lengthy branches. The seed cones contain a flesh dark berry considered juniper berry.

Applicable parts used

Bark, berries, and leaves


Organs or systems affected

Genitourinary/ renal (bladder & kidneys)

Gastrointestinal (stomach)

Reproductive (uterus)

Flower essence

Helps to release ancestral patterns and excess fluids

Mechanism of action

Diuretic, diaphoretic, stimulant, carminative, analgesic, antibiotic, emmenagogue, anti fungal, and hypoglycemic


Pungent, aromatic, bitter, sweet

Plant constituents

Essential oil, flavonoids, resin, tannins, bitters, acids, calcium, magnesium, vitamin c, podophyllotoxin, sesquiterpenes, diterpenes, and lignans

Traditional uses

Orally, juniper has been used for heartburn, gas, heartburn, bloating, loss of appetite, urinary tract infections (utis), poor urine flow, mental fog, kidney stones, stomach infections, high blood sugar, and poor immunity.

Topically, juniper is used for pains in joints and muscles, inflammatory diseases, and wounds.

Aromatherapy, the essential oil of juniper is used as an analgesic for pain and for bronchitis as an inhaled vapor.


Precaution & adverse reactions

Avoid long-term use. Stop use after 6 weeks.

Those suffering from kidney disease should not take juniper because it may be too stimulating.


Anti diabetics (juniper lowers blood sugar) and diuretics.

Pregnancy and lactation

Avoid during pregnancy. Juniper may increase uterine tone, interfere with fertility and implantation, and encourage miscarriage.


Fresh application 3 to 5 berries, eat to reduce stomach upset

Herbal infusion: ½ to 1 teaspoon crushed berries in 8 ounces water, steep 1 to 3 hours, 1 to 3 cups per day

Tincture: 1 or 2 dropperfuls, 3 times per day

Condition specific:

  • Dyspepsia: 20-50 mg of the berry essential oil, two times per day has been used. This is usually taken as juniper berry tea.


Pursell, jj. The herbal apothecary: 100 medicinal herbs and how to use them (p. 119). Timber press. Kindle edition.





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