Elecampane Root Tincture
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Inula helenium. Properties: aromatic, anthelmintic, bactericidal, fungicidal, expectorant, sedative; stimulant; diaphoretic
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Names: Elfwort, scabwort, horsetail; wild sunflower, velvet dock, horseheal, aunee, aunse (French), alycompaine, elfdock, nurse-heal; Alant; Echter Alant, Griechenkraut, Alantworzel (German); inula campana (Italian); Deviat Sil (Russian); Xuan Fu Hua (Chinese);
Properties: aromatic, anthelmintic, bactericidal, fungicidal, expectorant, sedative; stimulant; diaphoretic; diuretic; emmenagogue, expectorant, alterative, antiseptic, astringent, tonic, anti-spasmodic, chi tonic
History: Legend has it that Helen of Troy carried a handful of elecampane on the fateful day the Trojan prince, Paris, abducted her from Sparta, igniting the Trojan War which is were the helenium comes from. Hippocrates said elecampane stimulated the brain, kidneys, stomach and uterus. The ancient Romans used it to treat indigestion. They also used it as both food and flavoring, adding it to sauces for its bitter, camphorlike flavor and to counter the effects of overeating. Traditional Chinese and Indian Ayurvedic physicians used elecampane to treat respiratory problems, particularly bronchitis and asthma. It was reputed to cure scab disease in sheep, where the name scabwort came from. It was also considered a panacea for horses giving it the name horseheal. It was the main ingredient in a medieval elixir known as potio Paulina (drink of Paul) an allusion to St. Paul's biblical injunction to "use a little wine for thy stomach's sake."
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