Wormwood, otherwise known as absinthe, green ginger, madderwort, old woman or ajenjo, is a herbaceous perennial plant in the aster family (Asteraceae). It’s scientific name is Artemisia absinthium. Both the leaves of the plant and it’s flowering top are used for medicinal purposes. The plant is named after the Greek goddess Artemis. The name “wormwood” comes from its traditional use as a means to cleanse the body of harmful organisms. The plant’s best known use is in the making of absinthe, which is a liquor that is purported to have hallucinogenic properties. The main active ingredients that can be found in wormwood are thujone, silica, tannins, flavonoids, and inuline. This substances combine to give the wormwood plant a very bitter taste.
Benefits of Wormwood
The bitter substances contained in the wormwood plant are used to stimulate the digestive system and is used as a remedy for stomach, liver and gallbladder problems. The wormwood plant also has uses as a treatment for irritable bowl syndrome, fever, heartburn and colds.
The plant also possess mild anti-infective and anesthetic properties, making it ideal to prevent infections on cuts and bruises. Other uses of the wormwood plant include:
- Ease pain from menstrual cramps and labor
- Stimulate appetite
- Supports healthy digestive tract function
- Improve blood circulation
- Eliminate roundworms and pin worms for the gastrointestinal tract
- Insecticide and insect repellant
How to Use the Wormwood herb
Creating a tea using the leaves of the wormwood herb is the most effective way to take advantage of the healing properties of this herb. Start by placing 1 teaspoon of dried wormwood leaves in a cup of hot, bot not boiling, water. Steep for 4 or 5 minutes and strain. Don’t use more than a teaspoon per cup or let it steep for too long. Otherwise, the tea may become too bitter to drink. Sweeten the tea using stevia or honey. You can also blend it with other herbal teas like peppermint or anise to improve the flavor.
NOTE: We highly recommend that before using any herbal medications you should consult your health care provider or medical doctor for professional advice.
Disclaimer: All herbs and spices listed on http://www.islandherbsandspices.com/ or sold for medical and household use only, again we advice that before using any HERBS for medical purposes, please consult your physician.