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Chickweed herb: Overview, Uses, Side Effects, Precautions, Interactions, Dosing and Reviews

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Information On Using Chickweed As Food

The presence of weeds in the garden can send many gardeners into a tizzy but, in fact, most “weeds” are not as horrible as we make them out to be – they just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. On one continent a plant may be considered a nuisance weed, while on another continent, it may be cultivated for food or medicine. Like everything, different plant appearances, scents, or flavors can go in and out of fashion. One day an herb may be the go-to remedy, the next day it may be the weed getting doused in herbicide. As is the case for the use chickweed plants.

Is Chickweed Edible?

Native to Europe, chickweed was introduced to North America and other continents by immigrants who valued it as an herb. Its flowers and leaves are, indeed, edible, though in large quantities the saponoids it contains can cause stomach upset. Chickweed flowers and leaves can be eaten raw or cooked. Fresh flowers and leaves are tossed into salads, stir fries, stews, or pesto. Chickweed is also grown as feed for chickens and pigs, hence its common names clucken wort, chicken weed, and birdseed. Wild birds also love to eat chickweed seeds.

Though chickweed’s culinary uses seem rather average, or for the birds, I have not mentioned yet what a powerhouse of nutrients chickweed is. The edible parts of chickweed are loaded with vitamins C, D, and B-complex as well as calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, zinc, beta carotene, biotin, and PABA.

An added benefit of chickweed – there is usually no need to go foraging for chickweed, as it has naturalized in lawns and garden beds all over the world, which is why it is so often considered and treated as a weed.

Herbal Use of Chickweed Plants

Chickweed benefits also include healing. Salves or balms made from chickweed are remedies for irritated skin, rashes, acne, bug bites or stings, burns, eczema, wounds, and warts. They can also be used to reduce swelling, bruising, and the appearance of varicose veins. Chickweed is a common herbal remedy for hemorrhoids and shingles too.

Teas or tinctures made with chickweed clear up cough and congestion, soothe upset stomachs, and cleanse the liver, bladder, and kidneys. The anti-inflammatory benefits of chickweed eases joint pain in arthritis sufferers.

The same saponoids that prompts caution when using chickweed as food makes it a natural emollient and cleanser. Chickweed can be used in a variety of homemade beauty products to soften skin and hair and draw out toxins.

Before dousing that out-of-place chickweed with herbicides, you may simply want to consider replanting it in a kitchen herb garden.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article is for educational and gardening purposes only. Before using or ingesting ANY herb or plant for medicinal purposes or otherwise, please consult a physician, medical herbalist or other suitable professional for advice.

The Glories of Chickweed: Uses, Cultivation, Recipes, and More

 

Stellaria media, Stellaria pubera

Family: Caryophyllaceae/Pink family
Harvest time: spring and fall
Uses: food, medicine

 

Medicinal Uses of Chickweed

Herbal actions: laxative, demulcent, refrigerant, anti-Inflammatory.   A poultice of chickweed can be especially useful topically for inflammation, abscesses, and anything itchy.  Internally, it’s a gentle laxative and is soothing to the digestive tract.  Not surprisingly, this cooler-weather plant is also cooling to the system. To learn more about using plants like chickweed for healing, you’re invited to our herbalist class.

Chickweed Nutrition

Chickweed’s pretty packed with nutrients, especially for such a diminutive plant.  It contains vitamins A, D, B complex, C, rutin (a bioflavinoid), calcium, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, manganese, sodium, copper, iron and silica.  In comparison with spinach, chickweed holds up extremely well.  It’s got just as much iron, along with other nutrients.  So, when you’re trying to eat you’re daily dose of nutrient-dense leaves, consider this weedy wonder along with the better-known greens. For an all natural spring “cleanse” we love eating chickweed along with pokeweed (properly prepared), nettles, and wild mushrooms.  

Learn more about chickweed in our Online Gardening School

Ethnobotanical History and Harvesting of Chickweed

 

There are many species of this awesome plant.  The one that we use the most, common chickweed (Stellaria media) is native to Europe.  At this point it’s naturalized in North America and grows virtually everywhere in this continent too.  Chickweed has a long history of use as a nutritious edible green by both humans and animals. The ancient Greeks even wrote about using chickweed, and it was also commonly consumed in ancient Ireland.

Star chickweed (S. pubera) is native to our rich cove forests here in southern Appalachia.  Although this species is less abundance, it’s perhaps even tastier, and more choice than the common variety.  During many of our wild edibles adventures, we’ve feasted upon heaps of salad, primarily composed of star chickweed.

Habitat and Cultivation

Chickweed and red dead nettle courteously inhabiting a garden pathway

Natalie willed this wonderful weed into the Wild Abundance garden, now it comes up without fail in early spring and with her winter cover crops. She started eating chickweed regularly when she lived at Wild Roots, and since then it’s been a staple in the garden and kitchen.  Chickweed flourishes under row cover with the kale and in the paths, which are protected by raised beds to their sides. Our permaculture apprentices enjoy salads of chickweed during their stay here.

You can transplant chickweed into your garden; just dig up a clump and nestle it in a corner, or wherever you want it.  It’s a funny thing to desire a weed in a garden so very much, but chickweed is a very well-behaved and generous one.   In fact, it doesn’t seem to compete with cultivated plants, and it yields a tremendous amount of healthy food.

Generally chickweed likes a nice combo of moisture and sun.  It will thrive in springtime, die back during the hotter months, then reappear when things cool down.  In the wild, European chickweed tends to appear on forest edges.  Native “star” chickweed pops up in the forest, as it appreciates more dense shade.

Recipe: Chickweed Salad

For the salad:

6 c leafy (as opposed to stemmy) chickweed, rinsed, and chopped very finely (¼ inch lengths) across the stem

1-2 c sweetly ripe autumn olives, redbud flowers, locust flowers, or dried cranberries

½ c queso fresco or soft goat cheese

¼-3/4 c black walnut pieces, roasted sunflower seeds, or soaked and roasted pecans

Dressing:

1/3 c fresh basil or monarda spp (bee balm, etc) leaves

1 c olive oil

2 T lemon juice

1/8 c honey

1 ½ t salt

Recipe: Chickweed Pesto

6 c packed fresh chickweed

5-20 cloves garlic (depending on size and intensity of the garlic and your personal taste)

1 c olive oil

1 T sea salt

1 c toasted black walnuts, sunflower seeds, english walnuts, or pecans

zest from 1 lemon (make sure it is organic because you are using the skin)

Harvest chickweed with a knife to avoid dirt; rinse and swing to dry. Make pesto in batches; add half of olive oil first to food processor or blender, then add garlic, then salt, and finally the greens.  Eat fresh, store at room temp for up to a week, or freeze for up to 4 months.
Freeze in ice-cube trays, and empty into ziploc bags so that you can defrost just the right amount of pesto.

Stellaria media (L.) Vill.- A plant with immense therapeutic potentials: phytochemistry and pharmacology

Abstract

Stellaria media Vill. is a representative of Caryophyllaceae family. The plant is widely dispersed all over the world and has been used as therapeutic substance since time immemorial. This review is aimed at exploring the chemical constituents and pharmacological activities of S. media. The findings revealed important secondary metabolites such as flavonoid, oligosaccharide stellariose, anthraquinone derivatives, fatty acid, steroid saponins and phenolic compounds. These bioactive metabolites displayed diverse pharmacological activities such as anti-obesity, antifungal, antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-proliferative, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antidiabetic and anxiolytic activities. All findings revealed that S. media is a major species of Caryophyllaceae family. However, bioactive constituents and pharmacological potential of are not well appraised. Hence, extracts with established pharmacological activities should be subjected to bioassay guided isolation so as to obtain compounds with novel structural moieties prior to toxicogenetic appraisals.

Keywords: Stellaria media, Caryophyllaceae, Ethnopharmacological, Phytochemistry, Biological activities, Plant biology, Pharmaceutical science, Biochemistry, Pharmacology, Evidence-based medicine

1. Introduction

Medicinal herbs are regarded as the fundamental and safest therapeutic approach since primordial time and have significantly played life-saving roles in primary health care development [1, 2, 3]. According to World Health Organisation, herbal medicine is appraised as alternative therapeutic system to achieve total health care against various diseases such as gonorrhoea, syphilis, typhoid, malaria, cholera, measles, and ulcer [4]. Medicinal plants are natural resources, generally acceptable and assumed to have fewer side effects [5, 6]. Medicinal plants are widely distributed all over the world and their curative properties have been appraised on several ailments [7, 8]. Stellaria media Linn. is a perennial plant widely dispersed in cold and temperate regions [9]. Due to its geographical distribution, it has numerous common names, however, universally known as chickweed and about 120 species have been reported [10]. Different parts of the plant have been used to treat various gastrointestinal disorders, asthma, diarrhoea, measles, jaundice, renal, digestive, reproductive and respiratory tracts inflammations. They also lessen swelling and used as plasters for broken bones [11].

The appraisal of bioactive metabolites from different parts of S. media revealed over 80 secondary metaboltes. Some of these compounds are saponins, alkaloids, cardiac glycosides, fatty acids, tannins and terpenoids [12, 13, 14]. The crude extracts and isolated compounds of S. media demonstrated significant pharmacological activities such as anti-hepatoma [15], anti-obesity [16, 17], anticancer [18], antipyretic, anti-inflammatory [19], anti-oxidant [20], antimicrobial [21, 22] and anxiolytic potentials [23]. The plant has played remarkable drug discovery roles in conventional and modern medicine. However, there is no comprehensive information on the phytochemical and pharmacological activities of crude extracts and isolated compounds. Therefore, this review is tailored towards exploring the botanical description, traditional significance, phytochemical profile and pharmacological activities of the S. media.

2. Review methodology

Literature were explored from major scientific catalogues such as Science Direct, PubMed, MedLine, Google Scholar and Scopus with the keyword “Stellaria media L.,” “phytochemicals,” “ethnopharmacology” and “pharmacological activities”. Several published articles (2005–2019) were queried to procure information on phytochemistry and pharmacological assessments of S.  media.

2.1. Ethnobotanical description

Stellaria media L. germinates in autumn and springs flowers between May and October [24]. It has characteristic weak willowy stems, oval leaves, small white flowers with deep lobed petals followed quickly by the seed pods. The plant grows up to 40 cm in moist-fertile and nitrogen-rich soils especially in meadow, lawns and dumping sites (). It is widely distributed mostly in Asia, North America, Africa and Europe, having distinctive fine hairs on one facet of the stem [25].

Images of different parts of Stellaria media ([a] whole plant [b] aerial part (flower).

2.2. Taxonomy

The plant belongs to family Caryophyllaceae ().

Table 1

Taxonomy of Stellaria media L.

Kingdom: Plantae
Subkingdom: Viridiplantae
Division: Tracheophyta;
Subdivision: Spermatophytina;
Class: Magnoliopsida;
Superorder: Caryophyllanae;
Order: Caryophyllales;
Family: Caryophyllaceae;
Genus: Stellaria L.
Species: Stellaria media (L.).

2.3. Ethnopharmacology

Traditionally, leaves decoction of S. media has been reported for its curative applications. In Asia and tropical Africa, leaves decoction is used to treat acute gastrointestinal and respiratory diseases. Also, dried leaves are processed into pills, powders, or decoctions majorly to treat dermal infections, leg swelling, heart infections, thyrotoxicosis and haemorrhoids [16, 26]. In India, leaf decoction is used to dressed deep wounds, stop bleeding and lessen tumour [27], pulverized leaves, stem and root is used in form of plaster for dislocated bones and swelling [28]. The whole plant is used to treat asthma, bronchitis, pulmonary diseases and obesity [29]. The plant decoction has unique moisturizing and soothing properties which encourage its usage to relieve dermal itching, menstrual pain and mange [30]. Also, mixture of leaves, stem, flowers and root are often macerated and is effective in regulating psychological disorder, respiratory and reproductive tracts inflammations [31].

2.4. Phytochemical profile of

Stellaria media

Phytochemical appraisals of extracts and fractions of different parts of S. media have led to identification of about 50 bioactive metabolites. Few chemical compounds have been reported from bioassay isolation of different crude or purified fractions. Most of the bioactive metabolites reported till date belongs to phenolic compounds and saponins. Preliminary phytochemical investigation of ethanolic, ethyl acetate, methanolic, chloroform and aqueous extracts revealed the presence of alkaloids, saponins, cardiac glycosides, fatty acids, tannins, terpenoids and phenolic compounds, however, phlobatannins and anthraquinones were undetected [12, 14, 32]. Gas chromatographic-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) appraisals of purified fraction of leaf extracts revealed important bioactive metabolites such as luteolin, flavones, C-glycosyl flavones, vicenin-2, isoquercetin, genistein and apigenin [33]. In another study, vanillic acid, caffeic acid, p-hydroxybenzoic acid, chlorogenic and ferulic acid were identified (Kitanov, 1992). Two essential triterpenoid saponins, that is, gypsogenin and oleanolic acid were isolated from the S. media () [34]. Three novel metabolites; 2, 4, 5, 7 tetramethyloctane, 2,2,4-trimethyloctan-3-one, 6-methyl heptyl-3′-hydroxy-2′ methylpropanoate were isolated from aerial parts of S. media. These metabolites displayed exceptional anti-obesity and anti-inflammatory activities () [35].

Triterpenoid saponins isolated from the S. media (1):- Gypsogenin, (2):- Oleanolic acid.

The chemical constituents isolated from aerial parts of Stellaria media Linn. (1) – 2, 4, 5, 7-tetramethyloctane, (2) – 2,2,4-trimethyloctan-3-one, (3) – 6-methyl heptyl-3′-hydroxy-2′-methylpropanoate.

Important dietary supplements were identified in leaves extract of S. media through GC-MS technique. The metabolites are methyl stearate, hexacosanyl palmitate, ß-sitosterol, 6,7-dimethyl heptacosane, 3-methyl-6- hydroxy-heneicos-3-enyl acetate, triacontanoic acid, tricontanol, hentriacontane and pentacosanol [36]. Fresh and mature leaves are appraised to contain high proportion of ascorbic acid, carotenoids and tocopherol [37]. The leaves is also appraised to contain important essential and non-essential amino acids such as glycine, alanine, lysine, thymine, uracil, aspartic acid, glutamic acid, serine, proline, thymidine, tyrosine, 2- histidine, g-aminobutyric acid and threonine [38]. Aside amino acid, mature leaves and stem of S. media was reported to contain important flavonoids such as parietin, questin, daucosterol, anthraquinones emodin, 1-hexacosanol, kaempferol-3,7-ß-L-dirhamnoside and stellariose [13, 39, 40]. Phytochemical investigation of leaf extract of S. media revealed the presence of high proportion of total saponins (1.19 μg/g), total phenolic (45.5 ± 0.25 mg/g) and total flavonoid (1.4 mg/g) [41, 42]. Essential dietary minerals identified in S. media nickel, zinc, copper, sodium, cobalt, magnesium, lead, iron, manganese, cadmium and mercury [41].

2.5. Pharmacological activities of

Stelleria media

Pharmacological appraisals of medicinal herbs are connected to the bioactive metabolites present [2]. Pharmacological assessments of different parts of S. media authenticated its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-obesity, antidiabetic, anxiolytic and antileishmanial activities (). The pronounced pharmacological activities of S. media could be linked to the ethnopharmacological beliefs [42].

Table 2

Pharmacological activities of S. media.

S. media constituent Experimental models Pharmacological activities References
Aqueous leaf extract of S. media with Chenopodium album, Eclipta prostrata, Euphorbia pulcherima and Oxalis corniculata In vitro Antifungal activities were examined against the growth and sporulation of fungus Paecilomyces lilacinus [81]
Alkaloids and phenolics of whole plant extracts of S. media In vitro Antibacterial activities were examined on clinical isolates of E. coli, S. typhi, K. pneumonia, Staph. aureus, Pseudomonas
Aeruginosa and Bacillus subtilis
[42]
Methanolic leaf extract of S. media (L.) Vill In vivo (mice) The anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect was studied using albumen induced paw oedema and formalin-induced paw lick [30]
Lyophilized juice (LJ) of S. media In vitro and in vivo (mice) Anti-obesity activity was assessed by evaluating the inhibitory activity of LJ on pancreatic amylase and lipase and measurement of plasma triacylglycerol levels after oral administration of lipid emulsion [41]
Ethanol extract S. media In vitro and in vivo (mice) The hyperglycemic and hyperlipidemic effects was assessed and show decrease in fasting blood level [48]
Crude extract of S. media In vivo (Sprague-Dawley) rats Androgenic and antioxidant activity was investigated the effects of ameliorating vital organ damage and spermatogenesis impairment induced by Dichlorvos following sub-chronic exposure [12]
Methanolic extracts of leaf of S. media, Cajanus cajan and root of Tetracera potatoria In vitro Pronounced anti-oxidant activities was observed by DPPH radical scavenging and FRAP assays [32]
Stellarmedin A isolated from S. media In vitro Antiproliferative and peroxidase activities from S. media. Stellarmedin A affects the initial stage of HSV-2 infection and inhibit the proliferation of promyelocytic leukemia HL-60 and colon carcinoma LoVo cells [31]
Methanolic extract of S. media In vivo (Wistar rats) Methanolic extract show a strong anti-obesity effect with LD50 found to be more than 5000 mg/kg. [16]
Sub-fraction EAF5 of bioactive ethyl acetate fraction derived from the methanol extract In vivo (mice) The anxiolytic activity show pronounced activities at dose of 20 mg/kg, po [23]
Methanolic extract of S. media In vitro Antioxidant activity of 1020 ± 0.68 μg/ml [37]
Aqueous and ethanolic extracts of chickweed herb In vitro The aqueous extract decreased intracellular ROS production by fibroblasts in a concentration-dependent manner and also reduced intracellular ROS production [41]

2.6. Anti-inflammatory activities

Few studies appraised the anti-inflammatory potential of S. media in animals. Till date, only the in vitro appraisal of crude or purified fractions was reported. The inflammatory effect of methanolic leaf extract (MLE) was investigated on test rats of different body weights (100 mg/kg, 300 mg/kg and 500 mg/kg). Pronounced reduction in inflammation was exhibited on formalin-induced paw lick and albumen induced paw oedema after oral administration of MLE, indomethacin (5 mg/kg b.w) and distilled water (10 mg/kg b.w). Also, MLE considerably inhibited egg albumen-induced paw oedema at p < 0.05 [30].

The inhibition of hyaluronidase, lipoxidase and collagenase potentials of aqueous and ethanolic extracts at concentrations of 50–500 μg/mL, 10–200 μg/mL (hydrogen peroxide, H2O2 and O2, superoxide anion), 5–50 μg/mL (NO·, nitrogen oxide) and 100–500 μg/mL (ONOO, peroxynitrite) was appraised in vitro in cell-free systems via high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with Diode Array Detector and Ion Trap Mass Detector. Ethanolic extract exhibited significant scavenging activity against the radicals with scavenging concentration at 50% of 132.8 ± 3.9 μg/mL (H2O2), 16.5 ± 0.4 μg/mL (NO·) and 11.9 ± 1.1 μg/mL (ONOO). However, aqueous extract displayed significant inhibitory concentration against superoxide anion (62.7 ± 8.1 μg/mL) when compared with ethanolic extract. Apigenin glycoside was appraised as bioactive metabolite in the extracts [43].

2.7. Antioxidant activity

The scavenging potential of S. media is appraised using 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and ferrulic reducing antioxidant potential (FRAP). The scavenging activity of apigenin glycosides in aqueous extract of S. media leaf is appraised on human skin keratinocytes and fibroblasts after ultra violet irradiation via DPPH assay. The extract displayed significant inhibitory activity of 62.75 g/mL against xanthine-xanthine oxidase system. The activity is linked to the decrease in the production of intracellular ROS exhibited by the flavonoid-rich extract [44]. In a similar study, alcoholic leaf extract of S. media is appraised in Sprague-Dawley rats (25 mg/kg/bw/day) for their potential in ameliorating spermatogenesis impairment and vital organ damage stimulated by Dichlorvos. The leaf extract significantly ameliorate epididymal (29.91%), liver (20.16%), body (10.73%) and testes (32.21%) weight which causes severe mutilation to reproductive organs and liver hepatocytes [12]. The phytochemical appraisal of leaf extract of S. media revealed the presence of tannins, phlobatannins and flavonoid. The crude extract exhibited strong free radical scavenging activity of 76% and 79% via DPPH and FRAP respectively [32].

2.8. Antimicrobial activity

The effect of S. media crude extract or purified fractions on microbial infections has been comprehensively studied. The first antibacterial activity of S. media was appraised on phenolic and alkaloids-rich aqueous and chloroform leaf extracts with concentrations of 62.5, 125, 250 and 500 mg/ml. The extracts significantly inhibit the microbial growth of S. aureus, E. coli, S. typhi, P. aureginosa, K. pneumonia and B.cereus [42]. The aqueous, methanol and ethanol leaf extracts of S. media were appraised on E. coli, S. epidermidis, S. pyogenes,S. typhimurium, E. cloacea, P.vulgaris, S. aureus, K. pneumoniae, S. marcescens and P. aeruginosa. The extracts significantly inhibited the microbial growth of the gram positive and negative bacteria [45]. In a recent study, peptides genepro-SmAMP2 and β-actin gene isolated from S. media significantly displayed strong inhibitory activity against the tested bacterial isolates whereas Sm-AMP-X exhibited significant inhibitory activity against phytopathogenic fungi due to the N- and C- terminal regions of the specified peptide [46, 47].

2.9. Anti-obesity activity

The anti-obesity potential of ethanolic and methanolic leaves and stem crude extracts was appraised in induced female Wistar mice. The phytochemical appraisal of methanolic leaf extract revealed the presence of flavonoids and β-sitosterol. The alcoholic leaf extract significantly inhibit growth of calorie in the test organisms with lethal dosage at 50% (LD50) of body weight less than 5000 mg/kg [16]. The pancreatic lipase potential of lyophilized juice (LJ) was investigated on plasma triacylglycerol in Swiss albino mice at dosage rate (400–900 mg/kg) for 42 days. LJ significantly reduced lipase and pancreatic amylase growth rate whereas triacylglycerol level is increased. Similarly, body and liver weight, retropertoneal adipose tissue levels were considerably suppressed which led to noticeable decrease in total triglyceride and cholesterol (900 mg/kg b.w) [41].

2.10. Antidiabetic activity

The antidiabetic appraisal of alcoholic leaf extract of S. media was assessed for their hyperlipidemic and hyperglycemic potential in alloxan induced diabetic mice using established documented procedures. Significant inhibitory activity was exhibited by pancreatic β-glucosidase and α-amylase. This instigated significant reduction in fasting blood sugar, serum transaminase and HbA1c (−48.4%) of tested organism when compared to control model. Also, blood glucose levels were acceptably maintained [48]. In a similar study, flavonoids, terpernoids, glutamic acid and arginine appraised in alcoholic leaf extract displayed significant antidiabetic effect on alloxan induced diabetic mice [49].

2.11. Anxiolytic activity

The tranquilizing and ability to lessen anxiety of methanol, aqueous, petroleum ether and chloroform extracts of S. media leaves at body weights of 50, 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg was appraised in mice via EPM model, diazepam (standard drug) (2 mg/kg) by actophotometre. Methanolic extract and diazepam displayed comparable activities in lengthening the time spent by test organisms in open arms and improve locomotory behaviour [23]. Ethyl acetate fraction of bioassay guided isolation of methanolic extract of S. media was assessed on Swiss albino mice via EPM model. The fraction and diazepam exhibited comparable activity at 20 mg/kg, po and 2 mg/kg respectively, thus, justifying the ethnomedical claim of S. media in alleviating anxiety [23].

2.12. Antileishmanial activity

Up to date, few studies have appraised the immunology or inhibitory effect of S. media against Leishmania parasites. In recent times, alcoholic extracts of S. media was appraised on Leishmania tropica KWh33 promastigote isolated from an infected patient in Peshawar, Pakistan, sprouted in M199 medium with HEPES buffer, 10% FCS, penicillin and streptomycin. The isolated parasite was cultured on a microtitter plate and incubated at 24 °C for 72 h. The inhibitory effect of the alcoholic extracts was appraised in microscope with aid of Neubauer counting chamber. From observation, methanolic and ethyl acetate extracts significantly inhibited the growth of L. tropica with inhibitory activity of 185.9 ± 7.5 μg/mL and 36.4 ± 2.5 μg/mL respectively, however, glucantime exhibited weak activity of 5.6 ± 0.25 μg/mL [14].

2.13. Toxicological profile

Herbal drugs is viewed as the safest and innocuous therapeutic system, however, recent side effects reported from the use of herbs has significantly disrupted its safety or efficacy claims and also, most herbal plants are not well cited nor documented [50]. The toxicological appraisal of herbal drugs will facilitates and justifies its authenticity and safety. However, few toxicological reports on in vitro and in vivo applications of different parts of S. media raise questions on the usage of the plant parts. However, the toxicological and immune-stimulatory effect of S. media was appraised on Swiss mice by critical assessment of serum biochemistry and haematology of the test organisms. The assessment was based on discrepancy in mean corpuscular volume, packed cell volume and white blood cell whereas albumin, creatinine, total protein and serum bilirubin levels were assessed on the kidney and liver. The extracts significantly increase the lymphocyte counts (4.6 – 8.6 × 103/mm3), however, 4.3 × 103/mm3 increment was observed in the control mice at P < 0.05. The extracts exhibited significant reduction in protein level of 3.3–3.8 g/dl and insignificant immune-stimulatory effect was exhibited on the haematology [32]. Phytochemical appraisals of different parts of S. media revealed the presence of important metabolites such as saponins, cardiac glycosides, phenolics, terpenoids, flavonoids, phenolics, 1, 8-cineole, linalool, and mentol. These metabolites at high levels could cause contact dermatitis, diarrhoea, cyanosis, nausea, dizziness and erythema multiforme [51, 52]. In addition, nitrates identified in S. media are presumed to cause vertigo, weakness, headache, difficulty in breathing, cutaneous staining on fingers or lips and gestational pain [51, 52].

3. Discussion

Medicinal plants are referred to as major source of nourishments and natural metabolites for maintaining sound health [53]. They are also referred to as indispensable natural compounds with vast number of pharmacological activities [54, 55, 56]. Since inception, medicinal plants and herbal drugs are used in treatment of various kinds of acute and chronic diseases [2, 56, 57]. The therapeutic or curative significance of S. media in has gained global recognition mostly because of its relevance in traditional medicine. These curative applications could be due to bioactive metabolites such as minerals, vitamins, and other essential nutrients appraised [34]. Phytochemical assessment and dietary appraisals of different parts of S. media revealed presence of essential antioxidant vitamins, phenolic compounds and glycosides [12, 13, 23, 34, 41].

Generally, inflammation is appraised as body reaction to oxidative stress or pathogenic invasion and is often associated with severe pain or swelling of body surface and could lead acute or chronic diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, cystic fibrosis, osteoarthritis, allergies, and cancer [58, 59]. Plant secondary metabolites such as flavonoid glycosides and aglycone, g-aminobutyric acid, glutamic acid, anthraquinones emodin, and aspartic acid identified in S. media is reported to exhibit significant antimicrobial, immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory effects in human cells, animal models and pathogenic microbes [13, 32, 33, 38]. In addition, anthraquinones emodin, flavonoid glycosides and aglycone demonstrated pronounced therapeutic effects on inflammatory bowel syndrome and significantly inhibit related adverse conditions such as gastrointestinal pain and bloody diarrhoea [60]. Also, tannin-rich S. media extract exhibited strong prophylaxis potential and also displayed significant antimalarial activity [61].

Different parts of chicken weed are significantly used as therapeutic substances in treatment of inflammation, mental health disorder and tension [23, 62, 63]. Phytochemical appraisals of flower extract of S. media revealed presence of some secondary metabolites with great potential in activating specified genes which dictate its therapeutic potential such as antimicrobial and anti-protozoal [47, 63]. Certain plant metabolites such as tannins and saponins contributed to pronounced inhibitory activities displayed by S. media leaf against different kinds of dermal infection caused by Staphylococcus aureus, however, alkaloids exhibited strong inhibitory activity against bacterial infections by P. aeruginosa and S. aureus [64].

Diabetes is one of the communal diseases of man contributing to stern socio-cultural, economic and health influences in humid, middle-income, sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast Asia and South America [65]. It is associated with metabolic disorders relating to endocrine abnormalities, inflammation and oxidative stress [65]. The ability of S. media leaf to lessen endocrine abnormalities in animals is related to the scavenging activity and inhibitory effects of glycosidase and amylase on enzymes which contributed to carbohydrate metabolism [66, 67]. In addition, metabolites such as tannins, saponins, flavonoids and flavonoid glycosides contribute to antidiabetic potential of chicken weed. Tannins is appraised to regulate blood glucose level and lipid profile concentration without increasing adiposity [68]. Saponins contributed to management of serum glucose level in diabetic patients [69, 70]. Flavonoids undergo metabolic processes to combat diabetic complications and enhance insulin secretion, proliferation of pancreatic β-cells. It also reduces oxidative stress, insulin resistance, apoptosis and inflammation in muscles [71, 72].

Antiobesity is a global health concern, majorly caused by nutrition and food supplements. The imprudent intake of fatty food substances has been appraised to significantly lead to more than 70% of global obesity. In recent times, obesity is linked to most cases of diabetes, hypertension, cancer and high blood pressure [73]. Flavonoids and β-sitosterol from S. media significantly inhibit lipase and pancreatic amylase growth rate in Swiss albino mice while decreasing total triglyceride and cholesterol [41]. Herbs with potential in healing wound and incision has been in search ever since inception of man [74]. The wound healing and anti-inflammatory potentials of medicinal plant is appraised to depend on tannins content [75, 76]. The wound healing potential of S. media is appraised to be due to presence of alkaloids [75, 77]. The production of free radicals in man has been identified as health challenge contributing to several neurological syndrome, cancer, endocrine illness and aging [78]. Phenolic and flavonoids is appraised to significantly promote collagen synthesis and cross-linking of collagen, however, it is discovered to abridge inflammation period [79]. Saponin is effective in management of inflammation, wound, bleeding, endocrine illness and neurological syndrome [75, 80].

Chickweed Herb Uses

Chickweed Herb Picture
(c) Karen Bergeron

Stellaria media, Stellaria pubera

Other
Names:  Common Chickweeds, Star Chickweed, Mouse-ear
Chickweed

Chickweed Herbal and Edible Uses

Chickweed is an easily found plant, often growing in yards from late Fall to Spring in the South and year round in the North. It has numerous historical uses as an herbal remedy.

Chickweed is very high in vitamins and minerals. It can be
added to salads or sandwiches and cooked as a pot herb, tasting somewhat
like spinach.

As a herb, Chickweed is probably best known as an old wives herbal remedy for weight loss. A recent study in mice shows that there may be some possible validity to that claim.

Anti obesity effect of Stellaria media against drug induced obesity in Swiss albino mice

Chickweed can be applied as a poultice on sore muscles or irritated skin, and relieves fragile,
superficial veins or itching skin conditions. The infusion or juice of the plant is also used
externally to treat rheumatic pains, wounds and ulcers.

An infusion of the Chickweed plant is used internally as a
postpartum depurative, emmenagogue, galactogogue and
circulatory tonic. Chickweed is also used to relieve constipation, and
an infusion of the dried herb is used in coughs and
hoarseness. It is also said to be beneficial in the treatment of kidney
complaints. New research indicates Chickweed’s likely use as an
effective antihistamine.

Aside from occasional allergies, Chickweed is safe when used in moderation.

Excessive amounts may cause digestive disturbance.

Chickweed Habitat and Plant Description

Chickweed has long prostrate, often pinkish stems with a line of fine hairs on one side. The simple, oval leaves with pointed tips leaves are opposite on the stem and bright green. The five white petals are so deeply notched that they seem to grow in pairs, and the flower appears to have ten at first glance.

Chickweeds are an annual herb, widespread in
temperate zones, arctic zones, and throughout, probable
origin Eurasia. Chickweeds have established themselves all
over the world, possibly carried on the clothes and shoes
of explorers. They are as numerous in species as they are
in region. Most are succulent and have white flowers, and
all with practically the same edible and herbal values.
They all exhibit a very interesting trait, (they sleep)
termed the ’Sleep of Plants,’ every night the
leaves fold over the tender buds and the new shoots.

Growing Chickweed

The cultivation of this Chickweed is not necessary it is abundant
and easy to find. Gather above ground parts, before or as soon as flowers appear. It can be used fresh or dried for later herb use. Use the fresh, chopped herb to make tincture.

Chickweed Folklore and History

Old wives remedy for obesity, and used as a love charm.

Chickweed Recipes

Chickweed Herbal Tea: To 1 tbsp. dried herb, 2 if fresh,
add 1 cup boiling water steep for 10 min. Take in 1/2 cup
doses 2 to 4 times daily, during a cold or flu.

Add Chickweed leaves to salads as a fresh spring green.


Specialty Produce: Chickweed

More Information about Chickweed vegetable use

Chickweed Herbal Properties and Constituents

Chickweed is used in herbal
medicine as an astringent, carminative, demulcent,
diuretic, expectorant, laxative, refrigerant, vulnerary.

The major plant constituents in Chickweed are
Ascorbic-acid, Beta-carotene, Calcium, Coumarins,
Genistein, Gamma-linolenic-acid, Flavonoids,
Hentriacontanol, Magnesium, Niacin, Oleic-acid, Potassium,
Riboflavin, Rutin, Selenium, Triterpenoid saponins,
Thiamine, and Zinc.

Article by Deb Jackson & Karen
Bergeron

Next > Cinquefoil

 

Chickweed facts and health benefits








Chickweed Quick Facts
Name: Chickweed
Scientific Name: Stellaria media
Origin Europe and Asia
Shapes Many seeded dry capsule
Taste Sweet, Bitter
Health benefits Fever, Prevents Inflammation, Weight Loss, Joint Pain, Nasal Congestion, Vision, Constipation,Aids Digestion, Speeds up Healing, Skin Care, Treats Respiratory Problems

Stellaria media chickweed, also known as the chickenwort and winterweed is an annual flowering plant in the carnation family Caryophyllaceae. The plant is native to Europe and Asia, and is now found throughout the world. It is used as a cooling herbal remedy, and grown as a vegetable crop and ground cover for both human consumption and poultry. It is occasionally called common chickweed to differentiate it from other plants called chickweed. Other popular common names of the plant are  Common chickweed, Starwort, Stitchwort, common starwort, nodding chickweed, star chickweed, starwort chickweed, satin-flower, Chickweed starwort, chickenwort, craches, maruns, winterweed, mouse ear, tongue grass, Adder’s mouth, alsine, chick wittles, chickenmeat, clucken wort, hashishat al qazzaz, passerina, sercedili, skirt buttons, starweed, tongue grass, vogelmuur and white bird’s wye.

The plant is commonly called the “snow in the summer” because of its small white star-shaped flowers that usually bloom in the spring and last until autumn. The genus name Stellaria refers to chickweed’s tiny, white, star-shaped flowers. The common name refers to the herb’s appeal to birds and barnyard fowl, particularly young chickens. Most people considered it as a troublesome weed. The fact is that is plant is actually a useful herb we can take advantage of. The leaves and flowers open up fully when good weather is approaching. Likewise the leaves and flowers fold up shut when rain is on its way. Over time, it also became naturalized in North America and can be found in recipes and cultural specialties around the world. For those who worry about the safety of chickweed, it is completely safe to consume in moderation. While it is not the most popular leafy addition to a salad, this plant has a pleasant taste and has a slightly different growing season.

Plant Illustration

Chickweed is a prolific, low growing, annual, winter annual or sometimes perennial herb that grows about 15 cm (6 in) tall, sometimes up to 40 cm (15 in). The plant is found growing in woodland areas prone to flooding, thickets, cropland and fallow fields, lawns and gardens, nursery plots, cultivated fields, pastures, gardens, shady lawns, roadsides, wasteland, areas adjacent to buildings, and miscellaneous waste areas. The plant grows on a very wide range of substrates, but prefers moist, fertile soils with a neutral pH and good aeration. The plant has fibrous, shallow root system.

Stem

Stem is much branched, erect or ascending from a creeping base, rather weak, minutely pubescent in longitudinal lines bearing a single row of hairs on alternating sides of successive nodes, 20 to 80 cm long trailing on the ground, juicy, pale green and slightly swollen at the joints.

Leaves

Leaves are opposite, simple, succulent, egg-shaped very variable in size in different plants, smooth, or fringed with hairs near the base, ovate-elliptic, acute or shortly acuminate, 6 to 30 mm long, 3 to 15 mm wide; petiole of lower leaves 5 to 20 mm long and having a line of hairs, petioles of the highest leaf often very short or sessile.

Flower & Fruit

Chickweed flowers are small, white, and are held tightly in the upper leaf axils. They open into loose branching clusters with age on ½ inch hairy stalks. Each flower is about 1 cm across with 5 deeply notched white petals, usually with ten stamens with light yellow to greenish or even reddish anthers and a round green ovary in the center with 5 filament-like styles at the top. The five sepals are about as long as the petals, lanced shaped with fine, spreading hairs on the outer surface. Flower stalks are also slightly hairy; at flowering time they are erect to ascending and longer than the sepals, spreading more when fruiting.

They open about nine o’clock in the morning and are said to remain open just twelve hours in bright weather, but rain prevents them expanding, and after a heavy shower they become pendent instead of having their faces turned up towards the sun, though in the course of a few days rise again. Flowers are followed by many seeded dry capsule, ovoid, usually a little longer than the sepals, opening by six teeth, breaking into five segments at maturity. Seeds are dark brown, yellowish or dull reddish-brown, nearly circular, slightly elongated toward the notch at the scar, about 1 mm across, the surface covered with conspicuous curved rows of irregular wart-like projections, marginal projections are more prominent and toothed in appearance.

Health benefits of Chickweed

Chickweed is often used for digestive problems, and it can help with constipation and stomach issues.  Since it has laxative properties, chickweed tea is sometimes recommended for weight loss, but any weight loss would be temporary, so it’s not really practical.  Topically, it’s used for skin conditions and it can be made into creams and ointments for psoriasis, itching and dry skin. Listed below are few of the health benefits of Chickweed

Prevents Inflammation

Chickweed when consumed or applied externally has powerful anti-inflammatory compounds that help it ease discomfort and pain. This is mostly beneficial for people who are suffering from chronic inflammatory conditions, such as osteoarthritis or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), among others.(1)

2. Aids Digestion

Fiber, minerals, and antioxidants found in this plant helps to improve digestion, while also balancing the bacterial environment in your gut and supporting the immune system, more than 50% of which operates within the gastrointestinal system.(2)

3. Skin Care

There are numerous topical applications of this herb that can recover the appearance and health of your skin. The herb is loaded with minerals and antioxidants and can prevent oxidative stress and calm inflammation from things like eczema, acne, rosacea, psoriasis. It can even improve the appearance of scars and wrinkles! (3)

4. Weight Loss

Many people drink chickweed tea because it consists of good amount of diuretic and laxative qualities, which can help people, lose water weight. On top of that, however, some research has found that this herb also suppresses the appetite, further helping to limit calories and aid weight loss efforts.(4)

5. Treats Respiratory Problems

Some of the antioxidants in chickweed, namely the saponins, can act as expectorants in the respiratory system, helping you expel phlegm and mucus. This will relieve inflammation in those tracts, helping you breathe normally, while also removing many of the fundamental infections of that system.(5)

 

6. Speeds up Healing

Applying poultices or compresses of this herb to wounds encourages circulation and blood flow while protecting against infections, which speeds the healing process.

7. Constipation

Chickweed is traditionally consumed to soothe the consumption in the human body. Constipation is mainly due to the insufficient bowel movement. The goodness is due to the ample amount of the fiber innate.

8. Vision

The goodness of the beta-carotene innate in the chickweed is helpful in obtaining the normal vision. Beta-carotene is the source of the vitamin A, which is vital to obtain the healthy vision.

9. Nasal Congestion

The presence of the saponin in the chickweed is beneficial in the removal of the mucus from the respiratory tract. This produces good effects on the human body.

10. Joint Pain

Joint pain is due to the inflammation of the skin and the use of the chickweed with the anti-inflammatory property is helpful in the soothing of the wound.

11. Fever

When used as a febrifuge, chickweed can help to bring down a fever. It is really important to know the cause of a fever before attempted to bring down the body temperature. Fever is a natural response to infection or illness. Many illnesses increase at normal body temperature, and a fever is a good indication that the immune system is functioning to ward off the infection. In fact, a fever is a good sign as it means that the body is responding to fight the infection. A fever can become dangerous when it reaches 105°F. Speak with a trained health professional as to when you should seek medical help when fever strikes.

Traditional uses and benefits of Chickweed

  • Chickweed has a very long history of herbal use, being particularly beneficial in the external treatment of any kind of itching skin condition.
  • It has been known to soothe severe itchiness even where all other remedies have failed.
  • Whole plant is astringent, carminative, demulcent, diuretic, expectorant, laxative, and refrigerant, vulnerary.
  • Taken internally it is useful in the treatment of chest complaints and in small quantities it also aids digestion.
  • An infusion of the fresh or dried herb can be added to the bath water and its emollient property will help to reduce inflammation – in rheumatic joints for example – and encourage tissue repair.
  • Decoction of the whole plant is taken internally as a post-partum depurative, emenagogue, galactogogue and circulatory tonic.
  • It is also supposed to relieve constipation and be beneficial in the treatment of kidney complaints.
  • Decoction is also used externally to treat rheumatic pains, wounds and ulcers.
  • Expressed juice of the plant has been used as eyewash.
  • Fresh leaves have been used as a poultice for inflammation and indolent ulcers with most beneficial results.
  • Poultice of Chickweed enclosed in muslin is a sure remedy for a carbuncle or an external abscess.
  • Water in which the Chickweed is boiled should also be used to bathe the affected part.
  • Decoction made with the fresh plant is good for constipation.
  • An infusion of the dried herb is effective in coughs and hoarseness.
  • It has been used as a remedy to treat itchy skin conditions and pulmonary diseases.
  • 17th century herbalist John Gerard recommended it as a remedy for mange.
  • Modern herbalists mainly recommend it for skin diseases, and also for bronchitis, rheumatic pains, arthritis and period pain.
  • Poultice of chickweed can be applied to cuts, burns and bruises.
  • Chickweed is used as herbal treatment for Skin problems like Roseola, Eczema, and Psoriasis.
  • It reduces itching and irritation.
  • It is beneficial if you have dried or chapped Skin and Bug Bites.
  • It is useful in healing Acne and red pimples.
  • External use of Chickweed is very effective for the treatment of Sores, Boils, and Burns.
  • Chickweed soothes swelling on the Skin.
  • Anti-inflammatory properties of Chickweed reduce Internal and External inflammation.
  • It helps in treating Scurvy (Bleeding Gums).
  • It is a natural pain killer and is helpful in treating Muscle and Joint pains.
  • Consumption of Chickweed eases the Stomach and Intestinal problems.
  • Tea made of Chickweed helps clean the Intestines and the Kidneys by removing toxic waste from the body.
  • It is also used for treating the Urinary Tract Infections and Cystitis.
  • It helps in restraining Respiratory problems and reduces Phlegm in the lungs.
  • It acts as a tonic for Lung congestion, Flu, Bronchitis and treats Asthma.
  • It is helpful in treating obesity and lowers down the Cholesterol level in the body.
  • Decoction has been used in traditional herbal medicine to treat cystitis and other related urinary tract inflammations.
  • Decoction of the fresh aerial parts is a traditional treatment for relief from extreme physical fatigue and debilitation.
  • Use the ointment applied on a bandage to help draw splinters.

Ayurvedic Health benefits of Chickweed

  • Urinary Tract Infections: Have 20-30 drops of Chickweed tincture daily for 3 months.
  • Erysipelas: Prepare a poultice of the leaves of Chickweed. Apply on the affected area.
  • Urticaria: Take chickweed in a powder form. Prepare a paste. Apply it over the affected area.
  • Obesity: Drink Chickweed ( Buch Bucha ) tea regularly. It is an old remedy to cure Obesity.
  • Blurred Eyes: Take the leaves and the Flowers of Chickweed, Barberry, Marigold, Goldenseal, Oregon Grape, Eyebright, Cornflowers. Prepare an infusion. Let it cool. Use as an eyewash, 2-3 times a day.
  • Liver Diseases: Prepare a powdered mixture of equal amount of Red clover, Fennel, Cleavers, Dandelion, Oregon grape root, Burdock root, Chickweed and Parsley root. Boil 1 to 2 cups of water. Add one teaspoon of the powered mixture in it. Allow it to get cool down. Consume 1 cup of tea once a day before breakfast.

Other Chickweed Uses

Chickweed can be used in many ways, both in culinary and medicinal applications, such as in the form of an oil, compress, tea, poultice or salad vegetable.

  • Infused Oil: If you infuse oil with chickweed leaves and allows them to soak overnight, you can then use this oil for topical applications on the body, or you can add it to your bath, which can relieve skin conditions and inflammation.
  • Tea: Many people choose to brew a delicious, earthy tea from this herb’s leaves, mostly because this appears to have notable weight loss properties, thanks to the laxative and diuretic abilities of this herb.
  • Compress: If you make a decoction of chickweed leaves, you can soak a compress in the mixture and apply it directly to wounds, inflamed areas, or parts of the skin that require treatment.
  • Poultice: You can crush the leaves of the chickweed plant into a light paste and topically apply it to acute injuries and wounds to speed the healing process.
  • Salad Vegetable: Perhaps the most popular use of this plant, you can add a handful of these leaves, flowers and the top part of the plant to your salad for a unique flavorful bite and a number of excellent internal health benefits. The stems, however, are less palatable to eat as a raw vegetable.
  • Smoothies and Raw soups: Chickweed is a perfect addition to green smoothies or can be mixed up with any fruit to create a refreshing frothy drink. As a saponins-rich wild edible, when blended it froths up similar to the consistency of eggs in the traditional American drink called the “Orange Julius.” It can be used with other citrus fruits or pineapple to create the same effect. A small handful is perfect for any raw soup recipe, blended up with spices, miso and avocado for wild soup meal.
  • Juice: Chickweed is also an excellent ingredient in juicing recipes when juicing other greens, fruits and vegetables. It is a great herb to use when juice fasting to help clean the lymph and detox the body. The fresh pressed juice is maybe the most beneficial way to consume this wild edible.
  • Lightly steamed: Chickweed can be chopped and steamed with a taste similar to spinach. It can be used in much the same way you would use any leafy green, but it loses a good portion of its nutritional value when cooked over several minutes.
  • Chickweed extracts: Tinctured extracts of the plant are also available or you can make your own using an alcohol menstruum.

Culinary uses

  • Young leaves raw or cooked are used as a potherb.
  • They can be added to salads whilst the cooked leaves can scarcely be distinguished from spring spinach.
  • Seeds are ground into a powder and used in making bread or to thicken soups.
  • Leaves may also be used uncooked with young Dandelion leaves to form a salad.

Dosage and Administration

Taken as an internal remedy, the recommended dosage is about 1-5 ml daily of the herbal tincture

Taken as a tea, pour one cup of boiling water over two teaspoonful of the dried herb and steep for 5 minutes; do not allow the herb to boil.

Chickweed Tea Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 or 3 tablespoons fresh chickweed herb/ 2 teaspoons dried chickweed herb, chopped/crumbled
  • 8 oz or 1 cup water

Method for Dried Chickweed

  1. Boil the water in a saucepan.
  2. Remove water from heat and pour into a cup.
  3. Add chickweed to the cup.
  4. Let it steep for 5 minutes.
  5. Strain chickweed out and drink tea while hot.

Method for Fresh Chickweed

  1. Boil the water in a pan.
  2. In a cup, place the fresh chickweed.
  3. Pour boiling water over the herb.
  4. Let the mixture infuse for 15-20 minutes.
  5. Strain the mixture and drink the tea hot.

Poultice with Fresh Herbs

  • Take the herbs you have chosen and chop them into small pieces on a cutting board.
  • Transfer the herbs to a mortar and pestle, and crush the chopped herbs until they become a pulp.
  • The end result needn’t be silky smooth – the main thing is to start the juices flowing.
  • As you chop and mash, the herbs will release their natural juices and the leaves will become softer.
  • Herbs may also be chopped using a blender instead of a cutting board and mortar and pestle.
  • Spread the crushed herbs onto the desired area of the skin.

Poultice with Dried Herbs

  • Take desired dried herbs and combine with just enough hot water to moisten them.
  • For roots, it’s best to use a powdered form.
  • Simply add hot or cold water a little at a time to create a thick paste.
  • Spread the paste evenly over the desired area.
  • Wrap with gauze or muslin.

Infused Chickweed Oil

Ingredients

  • 2 handfuls of fresh chickweed leaves
  • 1 1/4 cups coconut oil

Procedure

  1. Finely chop the fresh chickweed and arrange on a cutting board or cookie sheet. Allow the chopped chickweed to wilt for 12 to 24 hours.
  2. Measure out 1 1/4 cups of coconut oil. Add the wilted chickweed to the oil. To acquire the best quality of oil, there should be an equal amount of chickweed and oil in the mixture.
  3. Use a blender to mix the chickweed and the coconut oil together. It typically takes 15 to 20 seconds before the two ingredients are fully blended together. You can also use a food processor for this step.
  4. Place the mixture on top of a double boiler or improvise by placing a bowl on top of a pan that has about 2 inches of water in it. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Stir the oil occasionally until the oil is warm to the touch.
  5. Allow the mixture to sit for a few hours. Repeat step 4 for about four times to ensure that the plant material fully seeps into the coconut oil. Be sure that you don’t get the oil too hot to avoid the leaves from becoming “crispy.” You’ll know that the oil is ready when it has taken a green hue.
  6. Strain the mixture after 24 or 48 hours to remove the leaves from the oil.

Chickweed Salve

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Chop the fresh chickweed finely and arrange it into a thin layer on a cutting board or cookie sheet. Allow to wilt for 12-24 hours.
  2. Measure out 1 1/4 cup olive oil in a measuring cup. Add the wilted chickweed to the olive oil.
  3. Place the chickweed and olive oil in a blender or food processor. Blend for 15-20 seconds or until the chickweed and olive oil are well blended.
  4. Place the chickweed and olive oil mixture in the top part of a double boiler, or place a bowl on top of a pan that has 2 inches of water in it
  5. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to simmer. Stir the oil occasionally and continue until the oil is quite warm to the touch. Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to sit for several hours.
  6. Repeat this process (reheating and allowing to cool) several times within a 24- to 48-hour period to fully extract the plant material into the oil. Throughout this process, do not let the oil get so hot that it smokes or that the plant material begins to “fry” and get crispy – you only need to get the oil warm to extract the goodness in the plant material.
  7. When the chickweed has infused well with the oil, the oil will have taken on green color.
  8. After 24-48 hours, strain off the chickweed through a double layer of cheese cloth.
  9. Measure out 1 cup of the infused oil.
  10. Measure your beeswax by weight. Using a double boiler or in a pan on very low heat, melt the beeswax.
  11. Once the beeswax is liquid, add the chickweed oil. Stir well to combine, using as little heat as possible.
  12. Add the optional lavender essential oil.
  13. Immediately pour into tins or glass jars.
  14. Let the salve cool until it hardens. Label and store in a cool place.

Precautions

  • In excess doses chickweed can cause diarrhea and vomiting.
  • Should not be used during pregnancy or during breastfeeding
  • Some people are allergic to chickweed, particularly if they are related to other plants in the daisy family. This can result in itching, rashes or redness on the skin, and if consumed, could result in gastrointestinal distress and nausea.

References:

https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=20169#null

https://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/56640/

http://www.hear.org/pier/species/stellaria_media.htm

https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxonomydetail.aspx?id=310864

https://pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?LatinName=Stellaria+media

https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/51635

http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/gardens-gardening/your-garden/help-for-the-home-gardener/blog.aspx?searchtag=+chickweed+(stellaria+media)

http://www.floracatalana.net/stellaria-media-l-vill

https://botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/c/chickw60.html

https://plants.usda.gov/core/profile?symbol=STMEM

http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/kew-2481938

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stellaria_media

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Got Pests?

 

Common chickweed is an annual, while mouseear chickweed is a perennial herb. Both are spreading, mat-forming plants, found in lawns, turf, cultivated fields, roadsides, forests and gardens. Common chickweed can be a serious weed in small grains, but it is an important food for wildlife and is used in orchards and vineyards to control erosion and to maintain consistent soil temperatures.






Creeping stems root at the nodes. Lower leaves are on long petioles, while upper leaves are without petioles. Leaves are bright light-green, hairless, nearly rounded with pointed tips, and are ½ to 1½ inches long. Flowers occur singly, are ¼ inch across, with 5 white petals so deeply indented that they appear as 10 petals.
All leaves are without petioles. Entire plant is covered with short white hairs. Leaves are dark grayish-green, oval and covered with soft white hairs, up to ¾ inch long. Flowers have 5 white petals, deeply notched, but not as deeply as common, and usually occur in clusters of 3 at the end of stems.

Click on images to view full-size

 

Identification and Control Information (each will open in a new window)

More Information (each will open in a new window)

 

[Photos, left to right:


Robert Vidéki, Doronicum Kft., Bugwood.org;


Rebekah D. Wallace, Bugwood.org; Theodore Webster, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org;


Theodore Webster, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org;


Theodore Webster, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org; Joseph M. DiTomaso, University of California – Davis, Bugwood.org]


It is the policy of the State of Maine to minimize reliance on pesticides. The Maine Department of Agriculture and the Maine IPM Council encourage everyone to practice integrated pest management and to use pesticides only as a last resort. The mention of pesticides in the fact sheets linked to these pages does not imply an endorsement of any product. Be sure that any product used is currently registered and follow all label directions.

 

6 Best Benefits of Chickweed Tea

Using chickweed tea is a common practice all around the world, and there are a number of health benefits it can provide.

What is Chickweed Tea?

Chickweed tea is a soothing herbal tea brewed from the fresh leaves of the chickweed plant, which bears the scientific name Stellaria media.  [1]This plant grows all over the world but is most commonly found in Northern Europe and North America. Among other common names, this plant is referred to as chickenwort, chick wittles, tongue grass, marun, and winterweed. In terms of taste, the tea has a very herbal flavor, reminiscent of a strong pesto or fresh grass. However, the taste doesn’t linger, and the tea is considered quite light in comparison to stronger green teas.

While you don’t benefit from all the nutrients of the plant when you brew the tea, you do get a decent amount of the antioxidants and water-soluble vitamins, such as riboflavin, potassium, vitamins C, B, and D, as well as flavonoids, beta-carotene, and other powerful active ingredients.

Chickweed is used as a cooling herbal remedy. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Chickweed Tea Benefits

Best benefits of chickweed tea include its ability to aid in weight loss efforts, provide relief from pain and improve respiratory health, among others.

Weight Loss

The most notable effect of chickweed tea is its laxative and diuretic properties. Drinking the tea can help you quickly lose water weight and clear out your bowels, helping you feel more active and improving metabolic speed. [2]

Respiratory Health

Drinking this soothing, natural sedative tea can help to eliminate inflammation in the throat and respiratory tracts. This can also help to neutralize the underlying infection. [3]

Circulation

The active ingredients in this tea are able to slow down clotting factors in the blood, which can prevent blood clots and also lower the levels of plaque deposition in the arteries. [4]

Fibroids

Studies have found that this tea can reduce the size of fibroids in the body.

Natural Sedative

As a natural sedative and pain reliever, this tea is ideal following an injury or illness, or if you are simply struggling to get to sleep each night. [5]

Skin

There are a number of antioxidants, such as flavonoids and beta-carotene, in this tea that can help promote wellness in the skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles, age spots, and blemishes. [6]

How to Make Chickweed Tea?

Making chickweed tea is quite simple, provided you have access to fresh chickweed.

  • 1 tsp dried chickweed leaves or
  • 2 tsp fresh chickweed leaves
  • 1 cup water
  • Thoroughly wash the chickweed tea leaves, dry them and slice them into strips.

  • Bring a pot of water to boil.

  • Add the fresh chickweed to a teapot or tea infuser.

  • Pour over the hot water. Allow the tea to steep for 15-20 minutes. Strain and enjoy!

Chickweed Tea Side Effects

While most people won’t experience side effects, this tea should always be consumed in moderation and should be avoided by those with potential complications, such as women who are breastfeeding or pregnant. Allergies are uncommon for this particular plant, but they do exist and may appear as stomach upset or topical inflammation when handling the leaves.

Due to the relatively small amount of research that has been done on this herbal tea, moderation is strongly recommended for everyone. Speak with your doctor about existing conditions or medications you may be taking before adding this tea to your healthy diet.

Star gear

Composition

Starweed herb contains flavonoids, tannins, ascorbic acid, free organic acids, saponins, as well as trace elements, among which there are significant amounts of such elements as potassium, calcium, sodium, magnesium, phosphorus.Of the essential elements, iron, cobalt, manganese, copper, molybdenum, chromium, zinc, lithium, and nickel were also identified.

Properties

Medium stellate is recommended for softening the exudate of thyroid follicles, resorption of nodules and elimination of lymphatic stagnation.

The plant has an analgesic, choleretic, anti-inflammatory, wound healing, hemostatic, tonic effect, stimulates the heart, metabolism, and has a beneficial effect on the central nervous system.

Application

Even in ancient times, this plant was often used to treat various pathologies of the thyroid gland.

Medium stellate contains a large amount of vitamin C, and, which is quite unusual, it contains carotene – provitamin A. These vitamins replace hormonal disruptions and restore the function of the thyroid gland. Another remarkable property of stellate is the ability to regulate hormones in case of thyroid disease.

Woodlouse belongs to medicinal plants, which, with increased thyroid function, by binding iodine and thyronine, normalize the function of the thyroid gland, and with reduced thyroid function, it is introduced into the herbal tea as a general tonic.

In folk medicine, compresses are used from the herb of medium starlet. According to A. Malovichko, compresses are designed to soften (liquefy) the exudate of thyroid follicles, to dissolve nodules, to eliminate lymphatic stagnation.

ANTIOXIDANT ACTIVITY OF STELLARIA MEDIA EXTRACT

Big Encyclopedic Dictionary of Medicinal Plants. Edited by G.P. Yakovleva St. Petersburg. Specialist. Lit. 2015.759 s.

Kavtaradze G. Influence of Stellaria media on the cardiovascular system // Mater. Dokl. 36th Conf. Tbilisi. honey. in-that. Tbilisi. 1973.S. 18-19

Plant resources of Russia: wild flowering plants, their component composition and biological activity.T. 1. / Otv. Ed. A.L. Budantsev. – SPb .; M .: KMK Scientific Publishing Association. 2008.421 p.

Plant resources of the USSR: Flowering plants, their chemical composition, use. Family Caprifoliaceae-Plantaginaceae. L .: Nauka, 1990.328 p.

Nijveldt R. J., van Nood E., van Hoorn DEC. et al. Flavonoids: a review of probable mechanisms of action and potential applications // Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 2001. Vol. 74. P. 418-425.

In vitro antioxidant activity of non-cultivated veqetables of ethnic Albanians in southern ltaly / A.Pieroni, V. Janiak, C. M. Dürr, S. Lüdeke, E. Trachsel, M. Heinrich // Phytotherapy Research. 2002. V.16, Iss.5. P.467-473 DOI: 10.1002 / ptr.1243.

Antioxidant activity and total phenolic content of medicinal plants associated with prevention and treatment of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases / R.Y. Gan [et al.] // J. Med. Plants Res. 2010. Vol. 4. P. 2438-2444.

Vardanyan R.L., Vardanyan L.R., Atabekyan L.V., Grigoryan T.S. Study of the antioxidant properties of medicinal plants in the Goris region of Armenia // Chemistry of vegetable raw materials.2013. No. 1. S. 151-156.

Kurkin V.A., Poroikov V.V., Kurkina A.V., Avdeeva E.V., Pravdivtseva O.E. Flavonoids of medicinal plants: prognosis of antioxidant activity // Modern problems of science and education. 2015. No. 2-2.

Shah MA, Bosco SJ, Mir SA Plant extracts as natural antioxidants in meat and meat products. Meat Science. 2014.98 (1) P.21-33.

Chanchaeva E.A., Aizman R.I., Gerasev A.D. Modern understanding of the antioxidant system of the human body // Human Ecology.2013. No. 7. S.50-58.

Pisoschi A.M., Pop A., Cimpeanu C., Predoi G. Antioxidant capacity determination in plants and plant-derived products // Oxidative medicine and cellular longevity. 2016; 2016: 9130976.Published online 2016 Dec. doi: 10.1155 / 2016/9130976

Gougoulias N. Evaluation of antioxidant activity and polyphenol content of leaves from some fruit species. Oxidation Communications. 2015; 38: P. 35–45.

Ky I., Teissedre P. Characterization of mediterranean grape pomace seed and skin extracts: polyphenolic content and antioxidant activity. Molecules. 2015; 20 (2): 2190-2207. doi: 10.3390 / molecules20022190.

Komarova N.V., Kamentsev Ya.S. A practical guide to the use of the systems of capillary electrophoresis “Kapel”. – SPb .: OOO Veda, 2008.212 p.

Endonova G.B., Antsupova T.P. Method for the quantitative determination of the total content of flavonoids in the aerial part of the multicolored carnation (Dianthus Versicolor Fisch.) // Bulletin of the East Siberian State University of Technology and Management. Ulan-Ude. 2014. No. 1. S. 89-92.

Yashin A. Ya. Injection-flow system with an amperometric detector for the selective determination of antioxidants in food and beverages // Ros. chem. f. (J. of the Russian Chemical Society named after D.I. Mendeleev), 2008, vol. LII, No. 2. P. 130-135.

Endonova G.B., Antsupova T.P. The content of flavonoids and antioxidants of some species of the clove family // in the collection: Theoretical and practical issues of the integration of chemical science, technology and education.Conference materials. Scientific editor B.B. Tanganov. 2016.S. 76-79.

Starfish

MEDIUM STAR (MILK) GRASS

Form of issue:

– Star gear 30 gr.

RECOMMENDATIONS in FOLK MEDICINE

An annual herb with an expectorant, tonic, anti-inflammatory, hemostatic, wound healing, diuretic, choleretic, vasodilator, antimicrobial, antispasmodic effect.

With such a broad pharmacological action, woodlice in folk medicine, as well as in traditional medical practice, is used for many diagnoses and symptoms as an independent remedy and in complex treatment.

It helps well with pneumonia, bronchitis, softens, relieves coughing attacks.

Useful herb for joints and muscles, it is used to treat osteochondrosis, rheumatism, arthritis, gout, myositis, sciatica. In complex therapy, they treat diseases of the kidneys, bladder, promotes crushing, removal of kidney stones, relieves puffiness, removes excess fluid from the body.

Used for diseases of the liver, gallbladder as a means of stimulating secretion.

Also, the herb helps with hemorrhoids, enterocolitis, relieves spasms and colic. Helps with high blood pressure, vascular dystonia, ischemia of the heart.

Woodlice is effective for diseases of the thyroid gland, metabolic disorders, including diabetes mellitus. The herb stimulates metabolic processes, removes fluid, normalizes digestion – all these factors contribute to weight loss.Therefore, it is prescribed for weight loss.

The herb is often prescribed for the prevention of ARVI, influenza as a natural complex of vitamins and microelements, a natural immunostimulating drug. The plant benefits people who have suffered serious illnesses for recuperation, as an antiscorbutic agent.

Due to the high content of potassium and iron, it has a beneficial effect on the hematopoietic system, increases hemoglobin.

Method of preparation and use:

Pour 250 ml of boiling water over 2 teaspoons of chopped starweed herb and leave for 10-15 minutes, drain.Drink 100 ml warm 2 times a day.

90,000 Zvezdchatka is … What is Zvezdchatka?

Starfish (lat. Stellária , from Lat. Stella – star) is a genus of flowering plants of the Clove family.

Botanical Description

Perennial, rarely annuals, with or without creeping underground shoots; stems are usually glabrous, rarely hairy, tetrahedral; leaves are usually all or nearly all sessile or nearly sessile linear-lanceolate or ovate.

Flowers, bisexual, actinomorphic, up to 20 mm in diameter, in loose dichasial inflorescences or solitary in leaf axils. Bracts are membranous or herbaceous (leaf-shaped). Sepals 4 – 5, lanceolate or lanceolate-ovate, glabrous, rarely more or less hairy, preserved in fruit. Petals 4-5, white, separated almost to the base or in the middle, rarely barely incised. Stamens 3-10. Columns 2-3. The ovary is unilocular with numerous ovules.

Fruit – polyspermous cylindrical capsule, opens with 4, 6 teeth or valves.

Seeds are almost round, brown, finely obtuse or acutely tuberous.

Geographic distribution

In the genus about 100-120 [3] (200 [4] ) species distributed almost everywhere, mainly in cold and moderately warm countries of both hemispheres, but partly also in mountainous regions of the subtropics and tropics [3] [4] . The largest number of species grows in the mountains of China [4] .

Views

  • Stellaria abortiva
  • Stellaria alaschanica
  • Stellaria alaskana
  • Stellaria alsine
  • Stellaria amblyosepala
  • Stellaria americana
  • Stellaria arenarioides
  • Stellaria arisanensis
  • Stellaria aquaticum
  • Stellaria axillaris
  • Stellaria bistyla
  • Stellaria borealis
  • Stellaria brachypetala – Short-petaled stellaria
  • Stellaria bungeana – Bunge starworm
  • Stellaria calycantha
  • Stellaria cherleriae
  • Stellaria chinensis
  • Stellaria ciliatisepala
  • Stellaria congestiflora
  • Stellaria corei
  • Stellaria crassifolia – Thick-leaved starfish
  • Stellaria crassipes
  • Stellaria crispa
  • Stellaria cuspidata
  • Stellaria decumbens
  • Stellaria delavayi
  • Stellaria depressa
  • Stellaria dianthifolia
  • Stellaria dichotoma – Forked star wheel
  • Stellaria dicranoides
  • Stellaria discolor
  • Stellaria ebracteata
  • Stellaria fennica
  • Stellaria filicaulis
  • Stellaria fontinalis
  • Stellaria graminea – Cereal starwort
  • Stellaria gyangtseensis
  • Stellaria gyirongensis
  • Stellaria henryi
  • Stellaria holostea L.typus – Lanceolate stellate, or stiff-leaved stellate
  • Stellaria humifusa – Squat star gear
  • Stellaria imbricata
  • Stellaria infracta
  • Stellaria irrigua – Irrigated stellaria
  • Stellaria lanata
  • Stellaria lanipes
  • Stellaria littoralis
  • Stellaria longifolia Muehl.ex Willd. – Long-leaved stellate, or Sprawling stellate
  • Stellaria longipes
  • Stellaria mainlingensis
  • Stellaria martjanovii
  • Stellaria media (L.) Vill. – Medium stellate, or Mokritsa
  • Stellaria monosperma
  • Stellaria neglecta – Neglected stellaria
  • Stellaria nemorum – Oak stellate
  • Stellaria nepalensis
  • Stellaria nipponica
  • Stellaria nitens
  • Stellaria obtusa
  • Stellaria omeiensis
  • Stellaria ovatifolia
  • Stellaria oxycoccoides
  • Stellaria pallida
  • Stellaria palustris – Marsh starfish
  • Stellaria parva
  • Stellaria parviumbellata
  • Stellaria patens
  • Stellaria petiolaris
  • Stellaria petraea
  • Stellaria pilosoides
  • Stellaria porsildii
  • Stellaria pubera
  • Stellaria pusilla
  • Stellaria radians – Radiant stellaria
  • Stellaria reticulivena
  • Stellaria rotundifolia
  • Stellaria ruscifolia
  • Stellaria salicifolia
  • Stellaria soongorica – Dzhungarian starfish
  • Stellaria souliei
  • Stellaria stenopetala
  • Stellaria strongylosepala
  • Stellaria subumbellata
  • Stellaria tibetica
  • Stellaria uda
  • Stellaria uliginosa – Swamp starworm
  • Stellaria umbellata
  • Stellaria vestita
  • Stellaria winkleri
  • Stellaria wushanensis
  • Stellaria yunnanensis
  • Stellaria zangnanensis

Literature

  • Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West, Gregory L.Tilford, ISBN 0-87842-359-1
  • Tsvelev N.N. Starfish // Flora of Eastern Europe . – M .: Tov-in scientific publications KMK, 2004 .– T. 11. – P. 146.

Notes

  1. The name Angiosperms is also used.
  2. For the convention of indicating the class of dicotyledons as a superior taxon for the group of plants described in this article, see the APG Systems section of the Dicotyledons article.
  3. 1 2 Tsvelev N.N. Zvezdchatka // Flora of Eastern Europe . – M .: Tov-in scientific publications KMK, 2004 .– T. 11. – P. 146.
  4. 1 2 3 Lazkov G.A. The family Caryophylleae in the flora of Kyrgyzstan. – M .: Tov-in scientific publications KMK, 2006. – P. 23. – 272 p. – ISBN 5-87317-319-2

References

Zvezdchatka – description of the ingredient, instructions for use, indications and contraindications

Sprocket description

Starfish is a group of flowering plants of the Clove family. Almost all representatives of the genus are perennial, there are annuals. The stem of plants is naked or hairy. Leaves are sessile, linear-lanceolate or ovate. Single flowers or flowers collected in inflorescences have from 4 to 5 white petals, divided to the base or slightly incised. The fruit is a polyspermous capsule that opens with 4 or 6 leaves. Seeds are cinnamon, rounded.

Composition of the extract

100 g of grass contains 4 g of proteins, 0.5 g of fat, 7.5 g of carbohydrates, 2 g of fiber and 49 kcal.The plant contains:

  • carotene;
  • vitamins E, C;
  • copper;
  • chlorine;
  • iron;
  • silicon;
  • magnesium;
  • potassium;
  • 90,155 selenium;

  • cobalt;
  • wax;
  • ethers.

Contraindications and side effects

Zvezdchatka is contraindicated in case of individual intolerance, allergies, pregnancy, breastfeeding. Consult your doctor before using herbal preparations for anemia and hypotension.

Attention! Some types of stellate are poisonous – cereal, forest, lanceolate, marsh, and others. In case of plant poisoning, muscle cramps occur, mucous membranes turn red, pulse quickens and weakens, breathing quickens, body temperature rises (up to 40 ° C). Symptoms persist for up to three days.

Pharmacological properties

Despite the presence of toxic components in the composition, stellate is actively used in medicine.The most medicinal value has a medium star, or wood lice.

Plant extract:

  • suppresses inflammatory processes;
  • strengthens and activates the immune system;
  • stimulates wound healing;
  • has a laxative effect;
  • stimulates the production and outflow of bile;
  • exhibits diuretic activity;
  • has a hypotensive effect;
  • normalizes blood circulation;
  • improves the functioning of the myocardium;
  • increases blood coagulability during hemostatics;
  • enhances lactation;
  • has an antihistamine effect;
  • relieves pain;
  • acts as an antiseptic;
  • has a diuretic effect;
  • stimulates sputum discharge.

The plant is used as an auxiliary folk remedy for diseases of the heart, liver and lungs, renal failure, eczema, hernia, cough. Star baths help relieve swelling of the lower extremities.

Attention! Stellate is used for the prevention of scurvy, anemia, atherosclerosis, osteochondrosis, hyperthyroidism, cirrhosis, cystitis.

Disclaimer

Please note that all information posted on the website
Prowellness is provided for informational purposes only and is not a personal program, direct recommendation for action or medical advice.Do not use these materials for diagnosis, treatment, or any medical manipulation. Consult a physician before using any technique or using any product. This site is not a specialized medical portal and does not replace the professional advice of a specialist. The owner of the Site does not bear any responsibility to any party that has suffered indirect or direct damage as a result of improper use of materials posted on this resource.

Medium starfish (wood lice)

Nature has given us enormous wealth in the form of minerals, beautiful landscapes, animals, plants and other great values. Walking through the forest, we do not even realize that under our feet there may be not just flowers, grass or shrubs, but very valuable means of protecting our own body from various dangerous diseases. One of these medicines is the herb stellate.

Contents:

Description of the middle starwort

The starlet is a flowering plant from the carnation family.It grows and develops over several years and is very rarely annual. Starlet flowers are similar in appearance to chamomile. The petals are white. The fruit looks like a closed spherical or ovoid capsule.

The main habitat of this plant is a cold and temperate climate. But other types of starworms, due to their adaptability, were able to settle in all other climatic zones and can be found on any continent.

Medium as a separate species is a herbaceous weed plant, which is very difficult to get rid of due to the fact that it can reproduce up to fifteen thousand seeds on average, which can be dormant for up to five years and during this period manifest themselves …But do not forget that, in addition to the negative qualities, the middle star also has a number of useful properties that are used in folk medicine.

In terms of life cycle, this plant only grows for one year. The appearance is presented as follows:

  • Branching stem up to ten centimeters long
  • Ovoid leaves
  • Flowers are star-shaped with white petals
  • Fruits are in the form of an oblong box with seeds
  • Flowering occurs from May to September

Our ancestors they learned to predict the weather using this plant.If the flower did not rise, and its petals bent to the ground, then rain should be expected in the near future. This pattern is associated with a scientifically substantiated fact, which is that the plant is very sensitive to air humidity, which begins to increase sharply before the onset of precipitation.

Collection and procurement

In view of its useful qualities, stellate is actively used in folk medicine as a medicine. But in order to take advantage of the gifts of nature, you need to carefully collect them.For the preparation of the main medicinal component, the upper green part of the plant is used, and the collection is carried out only during the flowering period.

After collecting the star wheel, a drying process takes place. The collected material must be placed in a ventilated place, protected from light rays and moisture. After drying, the grass is crushed and placed in a jar to prevent moisture from entering. The collection of a plant and its transformation into a medicinal component is due to the useful qualities of the plant and its components, which include:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin K
  • Carotene
  • Magnesium
  • Copper
  • Iron
  • Cobalt
  • saponins
  • Tanning elements
  • Alkaloids
  • Flavonoids
  • Lipids
  • Essential oils

Vitamin C stimulates the protective barrier of organisms, increasing the concentration of red blood cells in the body.The metabolism improves and the oxidative process slows down (it inhibits physical aging). Ensures the adrenal glands work smoothly to produce the appropriate hormones. Helps maintain natural cholesterol levels in the body and normal brain function.

Vitamin E is an essential element in the physical development of a child. Prevents cancer and strengthens the immune system. In addition, vitamin E has a rejuvenating effect, slowing down the aging process, and is also a tool for the prevention of coronary heart disease.It is used as a means of stimulating physical activity and normalizing the pregnancy process.

Vitamin K is an essential component in blood clotting, strengthens the walls of blood vessels and bone tissue. Participates in the formation of tissues of the heart muscle and lungs, as well as energy for the normal functioning of the whole organism as a whole.

Carotene strengthens all elements of the cardiovascular system and prevents stroke. Another useful property is the immunostimulating effect in the fight against pathogenic microorganisms.Prevents cancer of the female genitourinary system and cleanses the body of harmful substances.

Magnesium has a calming effect and has a beneficial effect on the nervous system, relieving excessive irritability and agitation. Besides. Participates in DNA synthesis and tissue regeneration, allows the body to assimilate the vitamins of the B and C groups, and also ensures the proper development of bone tissue.

Copper provides the synthesis of enzymes and proteins, takes part in the production of hemoglobin, erythrocytes and leukocytes.Helps provide all tissues in the body with iron and other nutrients.

Iron, like any other extremely important trace element, plays an important role. It is an integral part in the formation of hemoglobin and the corresponding protein to maintain the process of oxygen supply to all cells in the body, is involved in tissue growth and energy metabolism. In addition, iron is essential for the normal transmission of nerve impulses and the formation of cells of the immune system.

Cobalt, despite its negative properties, plays no less role than iron.It takes part in the production of red blood cells, has a sedative effect, and stimulates the development of bone tissue. In addition, cobalt is involved in the synthesis of DNA and RNA, normalizes the functioning of the pancreas, strengthens the immune system and prevents the appearance of malignant tumors.

The rest of the substances (tannins, triterpenes, alkaloids, etc.) soothe the nervous system, relax, relieve the inflammatory process.

Starfish in folk medicine

S.Kneipp. He researched this plant and was able to introduce it into the circulation of the following procedures:

  • In the treatment of lungs as a softener
  • Relief of nausea and vomiting
  • Treatment of hemorrhoids
  • Treatment of inflammation and tumors of the kidneys and bladder
  • Acceleration of wound healing
  • 9033

    When combined, starweed with plantains and horsetail in one broth helps to relieve inflammation of the eyes and adjacent tissues, helps to improve vision. Inhabitants of the northern and northwestern parts of Russia and Belarus use stellate in the treatment of hypovitaminosis, liver and kidney disease, stopping bleeding and hemoptysis, and also as a laxative and diuretic in the formation of stones in the genitourinary system.When preparing concentrated broths, the inhabitants of the north relieve swelling of the extremities and reduce pain from a hernia. And this is not all the diseases that starlet helps to fight.

    Means from starwort

    Starvetka is used for the preparation of medicinal decoctions and tinctures. For this, the dried upper green part of the plant is used. A small handful is diluted in boiling water in a volume of five hundred milliliters and infused for three days. After preparation, the tincture is taken orally in several small sips, three times a day.In this case, you can relieve acute inflammation, normalize hormonal levels and all cyclic processes in the body.

    For external use, the broth is used in the form of a compress or lotion. First, you need to moisten a small tissue and put it on the site of the skin lesion. Next, the moistened rag should be secured with a dry bandage, which will be separated by a plastic bag.

    After putting on a bandage, you can go to bed, and in the morning it should be removed to avoid subsequent irritation.After a few days, a positive effect will be noticeable, and after a week any damage to the skin will be removed.

    Medium starfish is not just a plant, it is a source of enormous medicinal power that must be used wisely and remember that natural remedies are much more effective than synthetic counterparts. But at the same time, do not forget that before starting to use it is worth consulting with an experienced specialist who will help to avoid side effects and achieve the desired effect.

    Video about the use of starworms for preparing salad:

    Cereal starworm – Weeds – OOO TD Kirovo-Chepetsk Chemical Company

    Systematic position.

    Family Clove Caryophyllaceae Juss., Genus Stellaria L.

    Synonyms.

    Stellaria hebecalyx Fenzl.

    Biological group.

    Rhizome perennial.

    Morphology and biology.

    Rhizome thin, branched. Stems 15-50 cm tall, branched, ascending, 4-sided, glabrous. Leaves are lanceolate or linear, narrow, sharp, up to 4 cm long and 4 mm wide, with cilia at the base at the edge. The inflorescence is spreading, many-flowered, the bracts are scarious, ciliate along the edge. Sepals are lanceolate, glabrous, with 3 veins. Petals equal to or slightly shorter than calyx, deeply bipartite. The capsule is oblong, longer than the calyx. Seeds are numerous, reddish-brown, rounded-reniform, wrinkled.Blooms from May to August. Poisonous.

    Distribution.

    All of Europe, Mongolia, China, Afghanistan. All areas of the European part b. USSR, almost all of Siberia with the exception of the Arctic, Central Asia, the North Caucasus, the Far East.

    Ecology.

    Grows in forests, especially thinned, shrubs, meadows, along the banks of rivers. Prefers sufficiently moist soils.

    Economic value.

    It infests mainly grain crops and perennial forage grasses, as well as crops of row crops.It is found in vegetable gardens, along roads, in fallow fields, fallow lands, along the edges of fields, near dwellings. Protective measures: chemical weeding.

    Control methods.

    Agrotechnical

    • stubble cultivation;
    • deep winter plowing;
    • cultivation.

    Chemical

    Treatment with herbicides

    Spraying of weeds before sowing, crop emergence:

    © Sokolova T.D.

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