Many of the health benefits of the Wood Betony herb have been renowned since olden days. The plant was once considered an herbal “cure-all” for dispelling a wide variety of diseases and ailments.
Wood Betony is a perennial herb mostly found in the grasslands, meadows and woodlands of Europe, western Asia and northern Africa. The plant can grow up to 70 centimeters tall. It possesses oval, toothed, hairy leaves that are perched on upright stems. Known by its scientific name of stachys officinalis, the wood betony flowers are pink to purplish in color and come out from July to September each year.
In the Middle Ages, wood betony was believed to possess many magical properties and was widely used in amulets and charms. In 1597, the medical herbalist Gerard wrote down the many herbal applications for the wood betony.
However with the passage of time, the reputation of wood betony in curing many maladies gradually decreased until a point that it was seen to be of little value. In fact, many modern folk medicine practitioners discount the many benefits said to be possessed by the wood betony.
Still, scientific research done on the constituents of the plant suggest that many of its believed health-giving properties were with some solid basis. The active constituents of wood betany are the following: betaine, caffeic acid, chlorogenic acid, harpagide, rosmarinic acid, stachydrine, and tannin.
Wood betony tea can be prepared by pouring a cup of boiling water on 1 to 2 teaspoonfuls of the dried herb. Let the mix stand for ten to fifteen minutes. Strain and drink.
Among some health benefits of this herbal tea are the following:
- Said to help battle against sore throats
- Could help alleviate headaches
- Believed to help induce calmness and reduce anxiety
- Appears to help lower the blood pressure
- May help treat irritations in the mucuous membranes
- Thought to aid in treating diarrhea
- Claimed to help stimulate digestion