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The volatile oils, particularly terpinen-4-ol, may cause an increase in urine volume.6 According to some sources, juniper increases urine volume without a loss of electrolytes such as potassium.7 Juniper contains bitter substances, at least partly accounting for its traditional use in digestive upset and related problems.
The German Commission E monograph suggests 1/2–2 teaspoons of the dried fruit daily.8 To make a tea, 1 cup (250 ml) of boiling water is added to 1 teaspoon (5 grams) of juniper berries and allowed to steep for twenty minutes in a tightly covered container. Drink one cup (250 ml) each morning and night. Juniper is often combined with other diuretic and anti-microbial herbs. As a capsule or tablet, 1–2 grams can be taken three times per day, or 1/4–1/2 teaspoon (1–2 ml) of tincture can be taken three times daily.
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The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2014.