Table of contents:
- Botanical description
- The chemical composition of wormwood
- Beneficial features
- Contraindications and side effects
- Admission rules
- The use of wormwood
- Traditional medicine
Bitter wormwood is a perennial medicinal plant that is traditionally used in folk medicine. The medicinal plant has a rather voluminous list of useful properties, and there are also a number of contraindications, since wormwood is considered a poisonous plant.
This plant has other names: true wormwood, white wormwood, field wormwood, wormwood, Swiss tea, widow's grass, wild pepper, vermouth, absinthe.
This unpretentious plant, which has a specific spicy smell and strong bitterness, grows everywhere: in household plots, around roads and residential areas, along the edges of ravines, in abandoned fields and meadows, forest glades.
Bitter wormwood differs from ordinary wormwood in its soft silvery pubescence on stems and leaves. In height, the plant can reach from 50 to 200 cm, it depends on the soil on which the perennial is entrenched.
The yellow flowers of wormwood are located on short branches that form one-sided brushes. All together they are collected in narrow dense panicles. By the end of summer, brown achenes are formed from them.
The chemical composition of wormwood
The herb, leaves and roots of wormwood contain a large amount of active active ingredients:
- Tannins - carry out antimicrobial, strengthening and restorative actions.
- Resinous substances - strengthen the structure of cells.
- Slime - perform anti-inflammatory and healing effects.
- Acids (palmitic, amber, apple, isovalerian) - antioxidants that improve digestion and promote the elimination of toxins and heavy salts.
- Bitterness - stimulate appetite and gastrointestinal motility. They improve the secretory functions of the gastrointestinal tract and pancreas, trigger the detoxification mechanisms of the liver and activate the filtration work of the kidneys. They have a tonic, anabolic and restorative healing effect (they increase the immune and adaptive forces). They normalize the activity of the nervous system, help to recover from poisoning.
- Flavonoid artemethin - a powerful antioxidant that reduces the effects of radiation. It has anti-inflammatory properties and is used in antihistamines.
- Phytoncides - perform a restorative effect after physical exertion, suppress and kill bacteria, fungi. They also have a calming effect on the nervous system.
- Lignans - phytoestrogens that normalize hormonal levels.
- Saponins - improve the adaptive abilities of the body, have an anabolic effect.
- Alkaloids - antispasmodics, are analgesic and sedatives. They have a choleretic and expectorant effect, are stimulants of the central nervous system (when using it, you should pay attention to contraindications).
- Coumarins - reduce blood clotting.
- Carotene Is a strong antioxidant.
- Capillin - active in the fight against fungal and pathogenic flora.
- Vitamins (A, C, PP, Groups B).
- Macro and trace elements (calcium, sodium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, iron, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium).
Separately, it is worth considering the active substances contained in the essential oil (absintol) of this wormwood:
- Thuillon - a poisonous narcotic substance that affects the central nervous system (causes headache, dizziness, hallucinations, convulsions, nausea and vomiting). In the correct therapeutic doses, it stimulates and improves digestion.
- Glycosides - moderately expressed toxic substances that have a tonic effect on the heart, blood vessels, muscles.
- Fellandren - shows diuretic and choleretic properties.
- Guayanolides - are active in the fight against tumors.
- Kadinen - has a stimulating, warming and toning effect.
- Pinen - performs the functions of an antidote for poisoning, purifies the blood.
- Caryophyllene, sepinene, bisabolene, chamazulenogen - have an immunostimulating, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, antihistamine, analgesic effect.
The components of the essential oil cause some of the contraindications to the use of the bitter plant and preparations based on it.
Wormwood is one of the most common plant species among naturopaths and herbalists. Bitter herb has a wide growing area, so the medicinal properties of the plant are familiar to herbalists from many countries. Supporters of traditional medicine are also aware of the contraindications associated with the toxicity of the components of the healing wormwood herb. The use of a medicinal plant is due to:
- Stimulating effect on the digestive tract and digestive glands, thereby increasing appetite. Wormwood helps to get rid of bad breath, heartburn, exhaustion during the recovery period after surgery.
- Strengthening the peristalsis and secretory activity of the stomach and pancreas. The active substances of the plant are responsible for the regulation of hormones and enzymes that prevent obesity. The herb is used against dysentery, flatulence, diabetes mellitus, and intoxication of the body. It is used in weight loss by enhancing metabolism.
- Highly effective in the treatment of gastritis, cholecystitis, biliary dyskinesia.
- Choleretic, carminative and antispasmodic action of the bitter herb. It is prescribed for diseases of the liver and kidneys (hepatitis, urolithiasis), except for the stages of exacerbation.
- Anti-inflammatory, wound healing, antimicrobial, disinfectant action. Helps fight colds, purulent wounds, burns, frostbite, boils and eczema. Bitter herb is active in the treatment of diathesis, urticaria, psoriasis, fungal infections.
- Hemostatic and antibacterial action.
- Antihistamine action (unpleasant allergy symptoms in the form of rashes, itching, inflammation of the mucous membranes).
- Antiparasitic, antifungal action: destroys helminths, tapeworms, pinworms. It is used for giardiasis and candidiasis.
- Depressing effect on pyogenic infections, gonococci, Trichomonas, chlamydia, viruses.
- Restorative, anabolic, tonic properties after physical exertion (helps with sprains, dislocations, edema).
- Strengthening the barrier and phagocytic forces of the body, normalizing metabolic processes. The plant helps to strengthen the lymphatic and connective tissue, bone marrow, vascular membrane. Effectively cleanses blood and tissues, increases the protective functions of phagocytes, which are responsible for fighting infections.
- Toning and calming effect on the central nervous system. It is used as a mild hypnotic and sedative for mild forms of insomnia, depression. Considering contraindications, it is used with caution in the treatment of nervousness and epilepsy.
- Stimulating effect on hematopoiesis, the work of the heart, blood vessels, the formation of antibodies, strengthening the immune forces of the body.
- Anticancer effect (the active substance "artemisinin" is capable of destroying more than 90% of cancer cells in 16 hours).
Contraindications and side effects
Bitter wormwood - exhibits the properties of a moderately poisonous plant, therefore, with the wrong approach to treatment, it can harm the body. When using the plant for therapeutic purposes, it is necessary to take into account the contraindications to its use:
- bronchial asthma;
- internal bleeding;
- anemia, anemia, thrombophlebitis;
- gastritis (erosive or hyperacid);
- hypertensive biliary dyskinesia;
- peptic ulcer and enterocolitis;
- exacerbation of pancreatitis and cholecystitis;
- increased acidity;
- epilepsy, severe nervous disorders and mental illness;
- pregnancy and lactation;
- children under 12 years of age.
The bitter plant contains slightly poisonous and toxic substances, therefore, before starting a treatment course, it is necessary to consult a competent medical specialist. He will designate a therapeutic range of application and a list of contraindications based on the individual picture of the disease. Wormwood is able to show its healing properties as efficiently as possible only if a number of rules are followed:
- The course of admission should not exceed two weeks, and the pause between courses should be at least 2-3 weeks.
- It is necessary to strictly follow the instructions for preparations containing the plant.
- Compliance with the dosage will avoid unpleasant and severe consequences for the body.
- Do not combine wormwood preparations with dairy products, eggs, alcohol and smoking.
Overdose and excessively long-term use can provoke severe headaches, nausea and vomiting, hallucinations, convulsions, convulsions and loss of consciousness.
The use of wormwood
Wormwood, which has an impressive list of medicinal properties, has been used since ancient times in folk medicine. Various medicinal preparations are prepared from leaves, tops with inflorescences and roots:
- powders from dry parts of bitter herb;
- alcohol tinctures;
- liquid extracts;
- water infusions;
Means, which include wormwood, are used both internally and externally. On the basis of herbal preparations and essential oil, compresses and lotions, rubbing and mouthwash are made.
In pharmacies, you can purchase a useful plant in the form of:
- alcohol tinctures;
- essential oil;
- dry grass;
- fees (diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, liver and biliary tract, musculoskeletal system, circulatory system and antihelminthic fees).
The plant is available in any form, but should not be self-medicated. Given the large list of contraindications and the severity of side effects, a competent approach to the use of herbal remedies is necessary.
Wormwood is used not only for medicinal purposes. Raw materials from the plant are used as the basis for "wormwood vodka" - absinthe and vermouth. Dry grass is used in cooking, adding as a seasoning to fatty meat dishes.
The plant is in demand in cosmetology (skin care for the face and head). And thanks to the bitterness and strong aroma, the perennial has established itself as an effective tool in the fight against garden and household pests.
Alternative medicine actively uses the multifaceted medicinal properties of the plant. Most often, wormwood is made from the bitter herb:
- Alcohol tincture… In 200 ml of vodka or medical alcohol add 25 g of wormwood. The solution is insisted for at least three weeks in a dark place, after which it is filtered. For a better concentration of substances, you need to regularly stir the contents of the jar. Diluted tincture is used internally (25 ml per glass of water), externally used for rubbing.
- Water infusion… Pour 10 g of plant materials with a glass of boiled water, warm up in a water bath for about 20 minutes. Strain the cooled infusion, add water to a volume of 200 ml. Take 1/4 cup three times a day half an hour before meals.
- Decoction… Take one tablespoon of dry herb and pour 0.5 liters of boiling water, boil for 2-3 minutes. Strain and use inside a couple of times a day. The broth can be used externally - for lotions or compresses.
- Herbal tea… Pour 5 g of wormwood herb with 250 ml of hot water, insist and consume before meals.
- Butter… Chop fresh leaves and inflorescences, pour 0.5 liters of olive or other refined oil. Insist for at least two weeks in a dark place. The oil is contraindicated for oral administration, so it should only be used externally.
- Dry powder… Grind dried wormwood leaves into a fine powder.Take orally a pinch three times a day with water.