For hundreds of years, Feverview
was the herb of choice as a general tonic and of course as the name suggests, used to reduce fevers. Its common name comes from the Latin febri fugia, which means "driver out of fevers."
But there many other health benefits for this aromatic plant, especially relief from migraines and arthritis.
In the home
- Place dried feverfew leaves in small sachets to deter moths.
- An infusion of feverfew leaves makes a mild disinfectant.
- When added to a posy of flowers plus tansy leaves, this arrangement will keep insects away.
- Add some dried leaves to your pot pourri to send insects packing.
- Add a few chopped leaves to the washing up water or soak a greasy pot with some leaves and hot water and you will see the grease disappear.
- Very small amounts of leaf can be added to to fatty food such as ham, pork sausages or suet puddings to reduce greasiness.
How to make an infusion or tea of fever few
- Steep a small leaf in a cup of boiling water and allow to stand for 5 minutes.
- Strain and sip a small quantity with lemon juice or if too bitter for your taste, add a little honey.
- Carry out the same procedure if arthritis is your problem, as rheumatism sufferers have reported good results in treating inflammation in joints and tissues. The main constituent of feverfew, parthenolide, has been credited with inhibiting the release of serotonin, histamine, and other inflammatory substances that make blood vessels spasm and become inflamed. Parthenolide has the overall effect of reducing pain and inflammation throughout the body - a result similar to taking a daily aspirin but without those side effects associated with daily aspirin use.
- Feverfew has been found to be effective in combating headaches and migraines because it reduces the smooth muscle spasms associated with such headaches and migraines. Relief can be found by eating 3 small leaves daily, such as popped into a sandwich, for a period up to a year. However, when taking feverfew for a long period, withdrawal should be slow as some could experience the same symptoms of withdrawal as with drugs or alcohol. Some people cannot tolerate the leaves in which case it is better to take the tea. Feverfew is also available as a supplement in capsule form.
- If you have undergone a tooth extraction, use the infusion as a mouthwash.
- You can also use the same infusion as a mild and natural laxative if you are suffering from constipation.
- The same infusion can be used to produce a mild sedative and/or appetite stimulant.
It is so much safer and gentler to use natural healing remedies to help cure or treat common ailments than resorting to over-the-counter or prescription medications.
- If you are a keen gardener, feverfew can be easily grown as a hardy biennial (or will sometimes stretch to being a perennial if the flowers are deadheaded) and makes an attractive addition to the garden with its pretty white and yellow daisy like flowers. The plant also does well in a large pot in a sunny spot. The feverfew herb is actually from the daisy and sunflower family and grows about 2 feet high.