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Yarrow Medicinal Benefits and Uses

Yarrow Medicinal Benefits and Uses

Yarrow is a long-stemmed member of the sunflower family found in the wild throughout the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. It can be recognized by its highly segmented leaves (millefolium literally means “thousand leaves”), and the clusters of daisy-like white or lavender flowers at the top of the stalk.

Native Americans used yarrow for wounds, infections and bleeding. Chinese medicine gives it praise for the ability to affect the kidney, spleen, liver and energy channels throughout the body. Animal studies have also shown support for the use of yarrow in cleansing wounds and controlling the bleeding of wounds, cuts and abrasions. Many times yarrow is categorized as a uterine tonic, which supports the circulation in the uterine. Many studies show that it helps the uterine by improving the tone, increasing menstrual flow and reducing spasms in the uterine.
Health Benefits of Yarrow

The health benefits of Yarrow Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties like anti inflammatory, anti rheumatic, anti septic, anti spasmodic, astringent, carminative, cicatrisant, diaphoretic, digestive, expectorant, haemostatic, hypotensive, stomachic and tonic.

Achillea Millefolium, as Yarrow is botanically known, is a perennial herb that is well known in Europe. This herb is believed to be a remedy for numerous ailments and diseases and has other significances in European culture too. Its juice is sometimes mixed with alcoholic beverages to add health benefits.

The Essential Oil of Yarrow is extracted by steam distillation of the dried plant. Its main components are Alpha Pinene, Borneol Acetate, Borneol, Beta Pinene, Camphene, Cineole, Camphor, Chamazulene, Gamma Terpinene, Isoartemisia Ketone, Limonene, Sabinene and Tricyclene. You must be well acquainted with these components by now and can assume what medicinal properties an essential oil may have just by looking at its components.
Essential Oil of Yarrow
Yarrow Medicinal Benefits
1. Anti-inflammatory: Your first guess was right! The Essential Oil of Yarrow is anti inflammatory in nature. It can efficiently handle inflammation of any type; be it of nasal or respiratory tracts resulting from common cold or be it of the digestive system caused by overeating of spicy food or be it of circulatory system caused by any toxin (venom, narcotics etc.) getting into the blood stream of be it caused by any other reason such as fever, infection etc. It soothes all inflammations.
2. Anti Rheumatic: Being good for circulation, it is good for rheumatic or arthritic patients too. It improves circulation and thereby prevents accumulation of uric acid in the joints and muscles, thus helping cure rheumatism and arthritis. Added to that, the diaphoretic property of this oil helps remove these toxins from body through perspiration.

3. Anti Septic: The common anti septic creams and lotions available in the market can hardly match its performance as an anti septic. It protects wounds from being septic and other bacterial, fungal or viral infections. It forms a protective covering on the wound and activates the blood platelets and leucocytes at the effected place, thereby checking the intrusion of microbes. Further, the oil itself has bactericidal and fungicidal properties and kills them, thereby adding to the effect.

4. Anti Spasmodic: Those who suffer from spasm, alone know how dangerous it can be. Spasm, or extraordinary contraction in the body, can lead to some of the most serious and even fatal of ailments. When in the respiratory system, it can cause severe and uninterrupted coughs, and may result in convulsions if it pertains to the nervous system. In case of spasm of intestines, it may result in acute abdominal pain, and finally, it may give rise to painful cramps in the muscles. The only way to get rid of this is to relax the contraction. Here, the Essential Oil of Yarrow can help as it has a relaxing effect on muscles, nerves, intestines and respiratory tracts.

5. Astringent: Remember that ad of toothpaste which says “Its incredible astringent tightens up the loosened gums”? Yes! It is the same astringent we are talking about. The actual function of an astringent is to bring about contractions, in muscles, tissues and even in blood vessels. This effect proves beneficial for us. When it results in contraction of gums, the teeth are secured. In case of scalp and hair follicles, it strengthens hair and checks hair fall. Further, it contracts shaggy skin and muscles which result from ageing, and thus gives you a younger look. And that is not all! It can also lessen bleeding or haemorrhage by bringing contraction in the blood vessels. The finishing touch! The Essential Oil of Yarrow has astringent properties.

6. Carminative: Are you afraid of those untimely air-cannon shots in the midst of a party which leave you no where or have you been suffering from flatulence, heaviness in the chest and the intestines, indigestion, chest-pain, loss of appetite, stomach-aches etc.? Do you know what causes them? It is that good old gas. Want to get rid of them? Try this essential oil. It removes gases from intestines with a downward motion and does not let them build either. Try it at home and experience the relief.

7. Cicatrisant: The Cicatrisant property of this essential oil can give thousands of those costly anti marks and anti scar creams and lotions available in the market a run for their reputation and money once it becomes popular. It is far better than those artificially flavored petroleum gels in curing the scars and vanishing the after marks left by the wounds, acne or pimples, boils etc.

8. Diaphoretic: This oil increases perspiration and helps removal of toxins, extra salt and water from the body. This also cools down the body and gives relief from fever.

9. Digestive: The Essential Oil of Yarrow improves digestion. It improvises secretion of digestive juices (acids and bile) as well as restores health of the liver and other digestive organs.

10. Expectorant: Being an expectorant, it clears congestion in chest, bronchi and nose and relieves them of phlegm. It also helps cure cold and is particularly beneficial in controlling cough.

11. Emenagogue: The obstructed menses can be turned on with the help of this essential oil and can be made regular. Further, the other problems associated with periods, such as fatigue, headache, abdominal pains, nausea etc. can also be tackled with the help of this oil. This essential oil can also help avoid early or untimely menopause.

12. Emollient: The Essential Oil of Yarrow holds the secret to a smoother and younger skin with balanced amount of moisture in it. It keeps skin free from dryness, cracks, infections and marks.

13. Febrifuge: The febrifuge property of Yarrow Oil helps bring down body temperature by promoting sweat (being diaphoretic in nature) as well as by fighting the infections which cause fever. It also gives relief from inflammation resulting from fever.

14. Haemostatic: This oil can efficiently bring down and even stop haemorrhage due to its haemostatic properties. Again, this property comes from its astringent property which brings about contractions in the bleeding blood-vessels and thus stopping the haemorrhage.

15. Hypotensive: Those who are suffering from hypertension and under constant threat of heart attack or brain haemorrhage can try this as a safe alternative to those drugs which bring down the blood pressure. A regular administration in low and mild doses can systematically bring down the blood pressure. But this oil should not be used for too long.

16. Stomachic: A stomachic keeps your stomach in good condition by maintaining proper flow of digestive juices into it, by maintaining the right balance between the acid and bile (so that excess acids are neutralized) and by curing the wounds, if any, in the stomach. It soothes the stomach and gives relief from inflammation.

17. Tonic: This property of Yarrow Essential Oil tones up the whole body. It makes right the metabolic functions like decomposition of food and absorption of nutrients by toning up the liver, stomach and intestines, helping you grow stronger and healthier; takes care of proper excretion; regulates the endocrinal secretions of hormones and enzymes and also tones up the nervous system, thus making you more alert and active, and finally, boosts the immune system, protecting you from infections.

18. Vulnerary: If a diluted solution of this oil is applied on wounds, or blended with a skin cream and applied, it helps your wounds heal faster and keeps them protected from infections. This oil is equally beneficial in healing internal wounds, cuts and ulcers.

19. Tranquilizing: This property of Yarrow Essential Oil can be a blessing for those who suffer from insomnia and excessive stress and starve for a bit of relaxation and sound sleep. This causes relaxation in the nerves, brain and muscles; drops blood pressure and brings a sound, refreshing sleep. This is far-far better than taking help of alcohol, narcotics like opium and sleeping pills based on harmful substances which can ruin your health in the long run.

20. Other Benefits: Further, this oil is beneficial in treating circulatory diseases such as varicose veins and haemorrhoids as well as certain skin diseases, wounds and burns, acne, dermatitis, colic, constipation and infections in the digestive system, urinary system and reproductive organs.

Yarrow is highly known and widely used in herbal medicines and supplied either externally or internally. The entire plant is used, both dried and fresh and is best when gathered while in flower.

Few Words of Caution: It may show neuro-toxic effects, headache and skin irritations etc. on continuous use for long time or in high dosages. Oral intake should be avoided in pregnancy.

Blending: The Essential Oil of Yarrow blends well with those of Angelica, Cedar Wood, Oak Moss and Verbena.

How To Use Yarrow:
In homemade Buckwheat Relaxation pillows to help promote restful sleep
In sweet dreams sleep tincture for times when falling asleep is difficult
In teas (with mint and chamomile) during illness
As a tea, tincture or poultice on skin for rashes and itching
As a tincture to help ease menstrual cramps and hormone issues (not for use during pregnancy)
Yarrow tea often helps with congestion symptoms from allergies and illness
Adding yarrow to skin lotions, oils or salves can help with eczema or dry skin
Add a strong yarrow tea to child’s bath for a high fever that bring down naturally
•  Since it is helpful in stopping bleeding and avoiding infection, poultices of yarrow and plantain can be helpful on wounds.

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