Vervain used as an herb has been in the consciousness of many civilizations for a long time. Vervain is considered sacred by the Romans and used the herb to purify homes and temples. It has also been used as a traditional treatment for kidney stones, snake bites and diarrhea.
Vervain (also known as blue vervain or verbena) is a creeping perennial plant of the mint family. It grows close to the ground and bears small purple-blue flowers with five petals that are borne in dense spikes. Some species of vervain are used as ornamental plants.
The above-ground or aerial parts of vervain are used in herbal medicine. Some of the active constituents of vervain are the following: mucilages, bitters, iridoid glycosides (hastatoside, verbenalin), caffeic acid, essential oil.
Many herbalists prescribe vervain tea as a stimulant, astringent, diuretic and diaphoretic. However, use of vervain is not recommended for pregnant women, as well as those in lactation as vervain is an abortifacient and an oxytocic agent. Taking too much vervain may also interfere with existing hypo- or hypertensive and hormone therapies.
To make vervain tea, pour boiling water over 1.5 grams of finely chopped vervain herb, and steep for 5 to 10 minutes. Strain then drink.
Beneath are some health benefits attributed to the vervain herb:
- Possibly helps to maintain liver health.
- May help cleanse the urinary tract.
- May help fight fever.
- Appears to help encourage the flow of milk.
- Seems to alleviate pain from arthritis.
- May assist in the overall treatment of nervous disorders.
- May help treat burns, wounds, and sores.
- May help relieve digestive ailments.