ENGLISH NAME: Meadowsweet
LATIN NAME: Filipendula Ulmaria
OTHER COMMON NAMES: Bridewort, Spiraea Ulmaria, Dollof, Lady of the Meadow, Meadow Queen
HABITAT: Western Asia and Europe. It can be found in wet meadows, swamps, banks of ponds, in forests and among bushes.
BOTANICAL INFORMATION: Meadowsweet (Latin. Filipéndula Ulmaria) is a representative of the genus Filipéndula, of the subfamily Rosoideae, of the Rosaceae family. The generic name Filipendula is formed from "filum" (thread) and "pendulus" (hanging), because the root tubers seem to hang on filiform roots. The genus combines up to 10 species widely distributed in forests and steppes of the Northern Hemisphere.
Meadowsweet is a perennial herb with an upright, leaf-bearing, unbranched, ribbed stem, 10-200 cm in height. It has a powerful and thick rhizome. The leaves are large (up to 30 cm) with stipules and short petioles. The plant differs from other types by intermittently pinnate leaves, in which there are smaller leaves between large leaves on the rachis, which have a strong smell when rubbed. The flowers are fragrant, numerous, small, yellowish-white, collected in a dense paniculate inflorescence. The plant blooms in June and July. Fruits are polygamous and ripen in July and August.
CHEMICAL COMPOSITION: The chemical composition of Meadowsweet flowers is fully studied. They contain flavonoids. Also phenolic glycosides are revealed - spirein, isosalicin and monotropitin; polyphenolic compounds - coffee and ellagic acids. Also salisylates ,carbohydrates, diterpenoids, triterpenoids, carotenoids, benzene and its derivatives, phenols and their derivatives, aromatic acids, furan derivatives, phenanthrene, aliphatic hydrocarbons, alcohols, aldehydes, ketones, fatty acids, vitamin C, tannins, chalcones, steroids.
Polysaccharide anticoagulant of nature - heparin is also found In the flowers of Meadowsweet.
ACTIONS: This herb is an amazing natural healer!
In folk medicine Meadowsweet is used as: astringent, sudorific, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, choleretic, tonic, stomachic, immunity booster, sedative, digestive, antisclerotic, depurative, antiscorbetic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anticoagulant, antioxidant, antiseptic and muscle relaxant remedy.
HEALTH BENEFITS: Due to the excellent healing properties of Meadowsweet, people called this plant a remedy for forty ailments. In traditional medicine, it is used for different health conditions. Some of them are mention below:
- Meadowsweet decoction is used as an anti-inflammatory and astringent for skin diseases (eczema, neurodermatitis), as well as lotions and rinses for stomatitis, gingivitis, periodontitis.
- Meadowsweet tincture successfully dilutes the blood, lowers blood pressure, promotes the resorption of blood clots in the vessels, helps with atherosclerosis, improves cerebral circulation.
- The flowers of Meadowsweet are used for treatment of the upper respiratory tract diseases, as a diaphoretic and antispasmodic agent. They have a sedative effect, thus it is good for hypertension, epilepsy, neurasthenia, hypochondria and other neuroses.
- As it was mentioned in chemical composition, the plant contains salicylates - a plant analogue of aspirin and, as it is known, aspirin has a very strong irritant effect on the stomach. Despite the presence of a large number of salicylates in Meadowsweet, this action is not observed in this plant and it can be safely taken even with high gastric acidity.
- Filipendula Ulmaria is also used as a diuretic remedy for nephritis, diseases of the bladder and gout.
- In addition, a Meadowsweet decoction is used to treat diseases of the joints, diabetes, diseases of the thyroid gland and even oncology.
- Be cautious using Meadowsweet during pregnancy, as there is no proven scientific information about taking this herb during this period.
- People with allergy to aspirin should not take Meadowsweet.
The German name of the plant Mädesüß comes from the fact that before Meadowsweet flowers were added to the honey wine for flavoring. The second interpretation of its name in European languages is associated with the old name of the wet meadows - Mede and the English name sounds accordingly meadow sweet, that is, “sweet from the meadows”. As an aromatic fragrance, dry Meadowsweet flowers were as snuff. In ancient legends, Meadowsweet was first discovered on the island of Cyprus, at the site of the birth of the beautiful Aphrodite Cypride. This goddess was born out of the sea foam and appeared before the inhabitants of the island, dressed only in foamy laces. Where the foam fell ashore, there grew high herbs with fragrant inflorescences. People have used the medicinal properties of the Meadowsweet for over 400 years.
Meadowsweet is an ancient plant with medical properties. The father of the botany Theophrastus mentions it in his works. English phytotherapist John Gerard wrote about this plant in 1597. Lonitserus and Jerome Bock recommended the roots of Meadowsweet as a choleretic agent.
The sweet-bitter flavor of Meadowsweet has long been considered enjoyable and used to create a pleasant aroma in the room. Fresh inflorescences were put on the floor and left for the whole night. In the morning, the plants were swept and thrown away, leaving a pleasant aroma in the room.
In England, Meadowsweet was mixed with other herbs to flavor things and bed linen, something like a modern sachet. It was the favorite fragrance of the English Queen Elizabeth I. The German name of the plant Mädesüß comes from the fact that before Meadowsweet flowers were added to the honey wine for flavoring. The second interpretation of its name in European languages is associated with the old name of the wet meadows - Mede and the English name sounds accordingly meadow sweet, that is, “sweet from the meadows”. As an aromatic fragrance, dry Meadowsweet flowers were as snuff.
*This article is for informational purposes only. We suggest consulting a physician before using these or any other herbal supplements.