Juniperus communis

Juniper berries; Photographer unknown; No date (n.d.). Juniperus communis. Retrieved from:,/span>

Botanical Name: Juniperus communis

Common name: Juniper, Cade oil, Cedar, Cedarwood (Natural Standard, 2014)

Family: Cupressaceae (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)

Parts used: Dried fruit (berry) (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)


Constituents: Diterpenes; Flavonoids (amentoflavone, quercetin, isoquercirtin, apigenin); Resin; Vitamin C; Volatile oil (myrcene, sabinene, a- and b-pinene, 4-cineole, camphene and limonene); and Condensed tannins

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)



  • Diuretic (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)
  • Antimicrobial (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)
  • Carminative (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)
  • Antirheumatic (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)
  • Bitter (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)


Traditional Indications:

Juniper has a long history of use in both Europe and China (Natural Standard, 2014). Actions are associated with volatile oil content and indications include:

  • Cystitis
  • Flatulent colic
  • Rheumatism and arthritis (internal and external indication)
  • Joint and muscle pain

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)


Clinical: Juniper extract has shown to be a potent inhibiter of the herpes simplex virus in human cell culture (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561). According to The Natural Standard no published clinical trails are available (2014).


Preparation & Dosage:

Tincture: 0.5-1mL/tds (1:5 in 40%)

Infusion: 1 tsp/1 cup water (infuse for 20mins)/tds

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)



  • The essential oil content stimulates the nephrons of the kidney and therefore the herb should be avoided in individuals with kidney disease (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561).
  • Prolonged use or overdose may result in kidney damage (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561)




Kidney disease

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 561; Natural Standard, 2014)

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