This blog has several posts extolling the numerous healing properties of mustard and mustard oil – in particular, its pain relieving and anti-inflammatory properties. Down the centuries mustard and mustard oil have been used in various ways: Ayurvedic formulations, home remedies, massage, etc. An interesting application is the Mustard Poultice.
A Mustard Poultice – also known as a Mustard Plaster – is a time-tested home remedy in which powdered mustard seeds are placed inside a protective dressing and applied on the afflicted part of the body.
A simple Mustard Poultice can be created by mixing four tablespoons of flour with two tablespoons of dry mustard powder. Mix the ingredients together adding a little warm water to create a paste (it should not be runny or watery). Take gauze bandage and fold it into three layers. Spread the paste within the inner layers of the bandage and place it over the afflicted area. Cover it with a towel and then a blanket to induce sweating (this will open the pores of the skin, allowing the active ingredients to work at a deeper level).
An enzymatic reaction takes place within the protective dressing producing allyl isothiocyanate (also known as AITC) which has enormous health benefits. When the mustard poultice is placed on the body, allyl isothiocyanate is absorbed through the skin. The warmth and anti-inflammatory properties of mustard start working at a deep subcutaneous level, relieving pain, relaxing muscles and acting as a counterirritant.
In traditional home remedies, the Mustard Poultice is also applied on the chest to ease colds, coughs and congestions. Since mustard is 100 percent natural, the Mustard Poultice is useful for treating colds and chest congestions in children.
So now you know yet another fascinating age-old application of Mustard. Incredibly useful, isn’t it? Do try it out.