Goat’s rue has been recognized throughout the centuries by different civilizations. The Europeans traditionally used it to help break fevers and treat infections from parasites and snakebite. The native Americans utilized the herb as an aphrodisiac and to help with male impotence. Even the roots of the goat’s rue plant were used in teas and given to children as it is believed that it will make them grow strong and muscular.
Goat’s rue is a perennial shrub native to Europe, Eastern Russia, Iran and some parts of Asia. It possesses smooth and erect branching floral stems that can grow up to five feet in height. Goat’s rue plant has green leaves that are made up of several lance-shaped leaflets, each leaflet measuring one to two inches in length. It bears white to slightly pink flowers that grow in spikes. The flowers form seedpods in autumn with each seedpod bearing two to six kidney-shaped seeds.
Known by its scientific name of galega officinalis, goat’s rue plant has been extensively cultivated as a forage crop, an ornamental, and as a bee plant.
The following are the active constituents of goat’s rue: galegine, saponins, tannins, bitters, glycosides, alkaloids and chromium.
Goat’s rue tea can be made by placing 1 teaspoonful of the dried goat’s rue leaves, stems and aboveground parts in 1 cup of newly-boiled water. Let the mix stand for about ten to fifteen minutes before it is strained and cooled. The goat’s rue tea may be taken twice daily for supplemental purposes.
The following are some health benefits attributed to this tea:
- May help in the treatment of rheumatism.
- Thought to help lower blood sugar and may be helpful in the treatment of diabetes.
- May help in the treatment of certain bladder problems.
- May help in fighting fever.
- May help fight coughs.
- May help in the treatment of irregular menstruation.
- May help facilitate the proper flow of breast milk.
- Has been traditionally used as treatment for snakebites and intestinal parasites.