Also indexed as:Calendula officinalis
© Martin Wall
How It Works
Flavonoids, found in high amounts in calendula, are thought to account for much of its anti-inflammatory activity.11 Other potentially important constituents include the triterpene saponins12 and carotenoids.
Investigations into anticancer and antiviral actions of calendula are continuing. At this time, insufficient evidence exists to recommend the use of calendula for cancer. Nevertheless, test tube studies have found antiviral activity for calendula.13, 14 The constituents responsible for these actions are not clear, however, and the relevance of these actions for human health care has not been established.
How to Use It
A tea of calendula can be made by pouring 1 cup (250 ml) of boiling water over 1–2 teaspoons (5–10 grams) of the flowers; the tea is then steeped, covered for ten to fifteen minutes, strained, and drunk.15 At least 3 cups of tea are recommended per day. Tincture is similarly used three times a day, at 1/4–1/2 teaspoon (1–2 ml) each time. The tincture can be taken in water or tea. In addition, prepared ointments can be used topically for skin problems, although wet dressings made by dipping a cloth into the cooled tea are also effective. Topical treatment for eye conditions is not recommended, as absolute sterility must be maintained.
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The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2015.