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Arctostaphylos uva-ursiArctostaphylos uva-ursi (Ericaceae)

UVA URSI, BEARBERRY, HOGBERRY

 

The spatula-shaped leaves of this creeping evergreen have been infused by European herbalists since the middle ages as a remedy for urinary tract inflammation, and they are still used for this purpose today.

 

Bearberry has been recognized as a diuretic in Europe since the middle ages, and its antibacterial properties were confirmed by German physicians in the 18th century. It grows throughout the northern hemisphere in the high lands of high latitudes and is found in North America, Europe, and Asia. The plant is low and creeping with spatula like leaves and small clusters of white or pink waxy flowers.

 

PARTS USED

Leaves collected in late summer.

 

ACTIVE INGREDIENTS

Hydroquinnones, including arbutin; iridoids; flavonoids, including quercitin; tannins; volatile oil.

 

ACTIONS

Increases urine production; antiseptic; astringent.

 

MEDICINAL USE

Given for cystitis and other inflammatory urinary tract conditions, and for painful urination.

 

PREPARATIONS

Infusion, tincture, tablets.

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