White Willow Bark
Traditional Use and Health Benefits
Native to Europe and Central Asia, the bark of the White Willow tree has been used for over 5,000 years as a powerful pain relief remedy. The Ancient Egyptians used this bark to treat pain and inflammation, and Hippocrates and Dioscorides recommended it as a remedy for gout and rheumatic joint diseases. Native American healers also relied on White Willow bark for its analgesic properties.
White Willow Benefits
Willow’s active chemical constituent – salicin. This chemical is a powerful anti-inflammatory and analgesic and studies show several other components of Willow bark (including polyphenols and flavonoids), have antioxidant, fever-reducing, antiseptic, and immune-boosting properties. Some studies show that this plant is as effective as aspirin for reducing pain and inflammation at much lower doses.
It is well known that low doses of aspirin are taken as a preventative as well as first aid for a heart attack as it helps to reduce the risk of internal clotting. Since the salicylates in aspirin are derived from Willow bark it stands to reason this herb has the same effect on the heart as aspirin. This means it can be effective in reducing the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
Painful menstrual cramps are usually the result of inflammation of the uterine lining and the contractions which are triggered by prostaglandins. As we know Willow bark regulates the production of prostaglandins and reduces inflammation, it will help to soothe not only cramps but other PMS symptoms.
Powerfully antioxidant compounds found in White Willow bark have been found to have a very positive effect on the skin. It increases the blood flow to the skin, thus providing much-needed nourishment, and can reduce the appearance of wrinkles and age spots.
White Willow Bark Powder can be made into a tea, by infusing 1-2 tsp in 8 oz of boiling water for 10 minutes.
Suggested dosage 1-2 tsp of herbal powder per 1 cup of boiling water up to 3 x per day. Do not exceed suggested dose.
Tincture: Take 2 - 4 ml, up to 4 times per day.
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