Common name: Centaury
Scientific term: Centaurea
Description: Centaury is a species of flowering plant in the gentian family that is used for numerous medicinal purposes.
Although Centaury is part of the official pharmacopeia, its chemical composition has not yet been studied properly. It is known that the stems and flowers of this plant contain:
- pigment and cyanogenic glycosides;
- anthocyanins, which have a strong antioxidant effect;
- essential oil, which has a high biological activity;
- vitamins (ascorbic acid, rutin, etc.);
- microelements (selenium, manganese, zinc, iron).
Due to the complex of these ingredients, Centaury has very strong anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, diuretic and diuretic properties. However, improper use of this plant can harm: cyanogenic glycosides belong to toxic substances, besides they can accumulate in the body, therefore the internal use of Centaury has certain contraindications and limitations.
The medicinal properties of Centaury has been known since ancient times. It was used as a diuretic, then it was found useful in the treatment of colds, fevers, liver diseases. Official medicine recommends Centaury flowers as an additional treatment for:
- edema of various origin,
- cholecystitis and other liver diseases.
Centaury can be used independently or as part of herbal therapy. In addition, Centaury lotions alleviate the symptoms:
- the syndrome of “tired eyes”;
- decrease in visual acuity.
Traditional medicine notes the useful properties of Centaury for:
- treatment of intestinal disorders and chronic constipation;
- normal blood sugar;
- better cardiac activity;
- harmonious neuropsychological state.
Centaury drugs are taken for colds, malaria and even pulmonary tuberculosis.
Benefits of a fresh plant:
Fresh Centaury flowers are applied to wounds and bruises. Centaury powder is applied to warts and fixed with a bandage, which is changed at least once a day. The period of wart disappearance may last up to three weeks.
Most often Centaury infusion is cooked for an hour (in a thermos) – a tablespoon of dry flower and a glass of boiling water. You can also keep the infusion for 15 minutes in a water bath. A tablespoon of the infusion is taken before meals three times a day for such diseases as:
- urethritis, cystitis, prostatitis, nephritis;
- intestinal infections;
- lever problems.
This infusion is applied externally for:
- lotions and eye-baths with redness and fatigue of the eyes, barley, conjunctivitis;
- rinses, neurodermatitis, furunculosis, non-healing wounds, eczema and other skin diseases;
- cosmetic purposes with acne and seborrhea.
With oily skin of the face, you can cook a useful and effective lotion by adding a tablespoon of vodka to the glass of broth.
To prepare an alcohol tincture, dry flowers are poured with vodka in the proportion of 1 to 10. It is necessary to seep the tincture in the dark place for two weeks. Tincture is taken three times a day, diluting 30 drops in water. It is used for:
- problems with the liver and gallbladder;
- nervous overexcitation.
A teaspoon of tincture is used to rinse with toothache.
Like many medicinal plants, Centaury can do harm when used improperly.
For external use, there are no contraindications (with the exception of possible allergic reactions).
The main contraindications for ingestion are associated with childhood, pregnancy and a tendency to uterine bleeding.
The high concentration of cyanides in Centaury and their tendency to accumulate in the body can be harmful with prolonged use. Therefore, the course of internal treatment should not exceed a week – this is enough to eliminate acute symptoms.