Latin name: Stellaria media
Health Benefits of Chickweed
Chickweed is one of the most common weeds in the world, yet has many suprising health benefits. It is a mild herb that is very nutritious, providing large amounts of protein and minerals. It is especially useful for the skin. Health benefits include:
- It is a contact healer both internally and externally. It helps with pain as it heals, helping to decrease pain and swelling. For this reason it is useful for burns, acne, boils, rashes, and other skin conditions.
- Useful when used as an eyewash for pain and swelling from conjunctivitis (pinkeye).
- Has been used in weight loss regimens since it is an appetite suppressant.
- Effective blood purifier, helping to carry out toxins.
- Dissolves plaque in blood vessels, and fatty tumors.
- Contains an anti-cancer agent.
- Chickweed pollen is a common cause of allergies in the spring, yet the air dried herb very seldom provokes an allergic reaction. In fact, it is useful in treating allergies and hay fever.
- Internally it has been used as a diuretic and as an expectorant in throat lozenges.
- It contains mucilaginous compounds that absorb toxins from the bowel, soothe inflamed tissues, give bulk to the stool, and increase the flow of urine. These compounds also decrease the thickness while increasing the production of mucosal fluids.
- Used for water retention and kidney disorders.
Nutritional Benefits of Chickweed
- Contains minerals such as potassium, iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium, copper, and silicon.
- Contains Vitamins C and A, and is a great source for B complex vitamins.
- Is a good source of fiber.
How to Use Chickweed
- When used externally, use as a wash, poultice, or salve.
- Use as a tea, tincture, or encapsulated when using internally.
Cautions and Side Effects of Chickweed
- May cause allergic reactions in people who are allergic to plants in the daisy family.
- Not recommended for use internally while pregnant or nursing.