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Calendula officinalis (Compositae)

MARIGOLD, CALENDULA, RUDDLES

 

The flowers and leaves of the familiar garden marigold have been valued since antiquity for their range of actions, such as antiseptic and wound healing properties. they are used externally for leg ulcers, piles, eczema and conjunctivitis, and internally for ulcers and throat infections.

 

Found throughout the world as a garden plant, calendula is also one of the most useful herbal remedies and has long been used in Indian, Arabic, and Greek medicine. Such large amounts are grown for medicinal use in the USSR, that it has earned the nickname of Russian penicillin. An annual, it has hairy oblong leaves and large, yellow or orange, daisy-like flowers from early summer until the first frosts.

 

PARTS USED

Flowerheads, leaves.

 

ACTIVE INGREDIENTS

Triterpenes; carotenoids; saponins; flavonoids, including quercetin; rutin; volatile oil; resin; chlorogenic acid.

 

ACTIONS

Anti-inflammatory; antiseptic; antifungal; reduces muscle tension and spasm; promotes wound healing; stops bleeding from external wounds; stimulates menstruation.

 

MEDICINAL USE

Given internally for inflammation of the lymph nodes, mouth ulcers, a damaged or ulcerated stomach lining, and as a gargle for throat infections and oral thrush. Externally, it is applied to leg ulcers, piles, anal fissures (small cracks) and eczema, as an eye lotion for conjunctivitis, and as a douche against vaginal thrush. Homeopathically, Calendula is prescribed for coughs, the common cold, fever, wounds, and chronic infections.

 

PREPARATIONS

Infusion, tincture, cream, homeopathic remedies.

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