Names: Queen-of-the-Meadow, Bridewort.
Habitat: A common wild plant in Britain, throughout Europe, parts of Asia and an escape in North America.
Collection: The fully opened flowers and leaves are picked at the time of flowering, which is between June and August. They should be dried gently at a temperature not exceeding 40 degrees C.
Part Used: Aerial parts.
Actions: Anti-rheumatic, anti-inflammatory, carminative, antacid, anti-emetic, astringent.
- Volatile oil; containing salicylaldehyde, ethylsalicylate, methylsalicylate, meth-oxybenzaldehyde and others
- Phenolic glycosides; spiraein, monotropin, gaultherin
- Flavonoids: spiraeoside, rutin, hyperoside, avicularin
- Polyphenolics and other tannins, mainly hydrolysable
- Miscellaneous; chalcones (unspecified), phenylcarboxylic acids, coumarin, Vit.C
Indications: Meadowsweet is one of the best digestive remedies available and as such will be indicated in many conditions, if they are approached holistically. It acts to protect and soothe the mucous membranes of the digestive tract, reducing excess acidity and easing nausea. It is used in the treatment of heartburn, hyperacidity, gastritis and peptic ulceration. Its gently astringency is useful in treating diarrhoea in children. The presence of aspirin-like chemicals explains Meadowsweet's action in reducing fever and relieving the pain of rheumatism in muscles and joints.
Combinations: With Marshmallow and Chamomile it will be very soothing for a whole range of digestive problems. For musculo/skeletal conditions consider combining with Black Cohosh, Willow Bark and Celery Seed for its anti-inflammatory effects.
Preparations & Dosage: Infusion: pour a cup of boiling water onto l-2 teaspoonfuls of the dried herb and leave to infuse for l0-l5 minutes. This should be drunk three times a day or as needed. Tincture: take l-4 ml of the tincture three times a day.