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Motherwort Herb

Veterinarian Reviewed on June 15, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized

Motherwort Herb


Motherwort herb is a dull green mint with hairy leaves that has a strong bitter taste. Its botanical name, Leonurus, was related to the leaves that resemble a lion’s tail. The flowers and leaves of this herb have a variety of medicinal uses. The species under the name cardiac was derived from Greek “kardiaca”, which means “heart”. The Motherwort herb flourishes in August. This plant yields pink flowers, and is considered as weed along the roadsides and fields. Motherwort is essential for many illnesses. It contains alkaloid leonurine that provide calmness on muscles. The Motherwort species referred to as cardiaca is used by herbalists to treat heart related problems in their patients.

History and Origin

The motherwort herb is native to Central Asia. It is cited by the German E Commission to be useful in addressing nervous cardiac disorder, and supplementary for thyroid hyperfunction. Expert herbalists have noted that motherwort herb can also be a mood enhancer. English botanist, Nicholas Culpepper, indicated that motherwort can make a person’s mind merry, blithe and cheerful. Another known herbalist Maude Grieve stated that no other herbs are better for making the heart strong and glad than the motherwort herb. Several folk remedies pointed to this herb as being useful for the period of transition of a women’s life.

Ancient Uses

Motherwort herb was used for centuries in treating conditions brought about by childbirth. Traditionally, the motherwort herb treats racing heart conditions due to nervous tension. Using it as long-term treatment it can reduce factors that cause clots from forming and lower the total cholesterol. Motherwort herb can also be a treatment for menstrual tension. Additionally, it can treat false labor pains, and stimulates delayed menstruation related to prolonged emotional stress.

Modern Uses

Motherwort herb can act as galactagogue, the promotion of the flow of mother’s milk. It is useful as uterine tonic related to childbirth. Motherwort herb has leonurine, a chemical that supports uterine contractions. It has claims being an emmenagogue, an agent promoting menstrual flow.

Motherwort herb is a relaxing agent and used by herbalists in treating menopausal concerns like nervousness, heart palpitations, rapid heart rate, and insomnia. This herb can be of help in heart conditions that are aggravated due to nervousness. The motherwort ability in improving mental outlook and reducing stress effects, herbalists noted its importance to minimize danger of postpartum depression.

Motherwort is sometimes referred to as a cardiotonic. Injecting motherwort was observed to prevent blood clot formation. This is essential in improving the blood flow and reducing the threat of stroke, heart attack and other related conditions. Since it is instrumental in relaxing the blood vessels, motherwort is perfect for hypertension. It may provide correction to heart palpitations that are accompanied by thyroid issues and low blood sugar.

Side Effects

Motherwort herb is not recommended during pregnancy because it can make the uterine contract and cause miscarriage. Some people may contract skin inflammation when having contact with the leaves. Taking motherwort in excessive amount can cause drowsiness. Sunscreen should be worn when using motherwort herb because it increases sensitivity to sunlight. Excess application from the required dosage can cause problems such as uterine bleeding, diarrhea, and stomach irritation.

Read also: Sleep Problems in Children

Our Expert

Paulina Nelega, RH
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan

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