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Calendula officinalis is an annual plant with bright flowers and numerous medicinal properties. Due to this, it is widely used in official medicine, folk recipes, cosmetology and perfumery. It helps with anemia, tumors, inflammation – and this is just a small list of useful properties of calendula. But she also has a number of contraindications.

Description

The homeland of calendula is the Mediterranean, southwest Asia, it is common in some European regions and in the North Caucasus. It is an annual plant with a branched, erect stem that grows up to 75 cm tall. The plant is unpretentious, but thermophilic. Calendula has very noticeable basket flowers – bright yellow or orange, with many thin petals – up to 4 cm in diameter.

Calendula (Calendula) has other names – crocus, marigold, gold or oil color. It is accompanied by many interesting facts and legends:

  • in ancient England, it was a sacred flower, which was always included in wedding bouquets, and in India it was associated with the solstice and Krishna;
  • in Germany and Austria it was called “death flowers” because of its strong tart smell;
  • in Mexico, it is also compared with death, but already because of the legend, according to which the grass grew in places where the blood of the Indians who were killed by the Spanish conquerors was shed;
  • due to the availability and ease of growing the plant, combined with culinary benefits, the grass is called the “poor man’s saffron”;
  • due to the fact that marigold baskets open and close at a certain time, it is called “flower clock”.

In terms of popularity and medicinal properties, it is compared with medicinal chamomile, St. John’s wort, sage, marshmallow and plantain. It blooms in June-October, raw materials are harvested only in sunny weather. It is necessary to dry the calendula immediately after collection, spreading it out in the air, without an electric dryer. Due to heat treatment, the herb loses its beneficial properties.

Chemical composition

Calendula has a strong chemical composition, which has healing properties. For medicinal purposes, the inflorescences of the plant and leafy tops are used. Decoctions, infusions, tea are prepared from them. The composition of calendula flowers includes many vitamins and minerals:

  • carotenoids and pigments for the synthesis of ascorbic acid;
  • tannins and essential oils that inhibit the reproduction of pathogenic microorganisms;
  • flavonoids stop muscle spasms, remove toxins and toxins, accelerate the scarring of ulcers;
  • coumarins eliminate inflammation;
  • triterpenoids reduce the concentration of cholesterol;
  • organic acids prevent the processes of decay and fermentation in the intestines, normalize the acid-base environment;
  • minerals prevent the appearance of atypical cells, strengthen the immune system, are necessary for the functioning of the whole organism;
  • resins, bitterness, enzymes, saponins are also present.

The brighter the calendula flowers, the more carotenoids in it, and essential oils and vitamin C give the plant its characteristic aroma. The herb is not toxic, the main active substances are concentrated in the inflorescences. And the seeds of the plant contain a high concentration of fatty oils in the form of glycerols and acids.

Indications and contraindications

Calendula is a beautiful plant that can be used for landscape design. It is ideal for apiaries, being an excellent honey plant. The essence of the plant is included in many perfume compositions, giving them a slight bitterness and sharpness. Calendula tea soothes, restores normal sleep.

In areas where calendula grows, there are no nematodes (roundworms), and mosquitoes, mosquitoes and garden pests do not like the aroma of grass. In ancient Rome, it was used as an antidote after scorpion stings, which often saved people’s lives. During the war, calendula was used as an antiseptic, lotions with the plant stopped the blood and accelerated the healing of wounds.

Calendula extract is included in official medicine preparations:

  1. Caleflon. Calendula tablets for use in diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, to stop inflammation, to speed up the healing of ulcers.
  2. KN tablets. They are made from crushed flowers of the plant and nicotinic acid. They are part of complex therapy for oncological diseases that are not subject to surgical operation.
  3. Kaferid. The preparation consists of marigolds of calendula and iron oxide. It is prescribed for anemia, stimulates hematopoiesis.

Calendula calms the nervous system, therefore it is useful for neurological diseases, excessive emotional excitability. Medicinal infusions help to cope with insomnia and restore sound healthy sleep.

Means based on calendula are used for compresses, rinsing, douching, ingestion. The plant is part of the therapeutic homeopathic fees. What is useful calendula for health, its action:

  • painkiller;
  • cleansing the blood of toxins and toxins;
  • stimulates blood formation;
  • antispasmodic;
  • diuretic;
  • wound healing;
  • secretory;
  • cardiotonic;
  • diaphoretic;
  • hypotensive;
  • anti-inflammatory.

Tincture or decoction is used to treat respiratory diseases, cough, gastrointestinal tract, pathologies of the urinary system. As an external agent, it is used to heal wounds, boils, fistulas, eliminate calluses and hemorrhoidal cracks, and a purulent rash. In the field of gynecology, the plant helps in the treatment of cervical erosion, fibroids, bleeding, and restores the menstrual cycle.

But calendula has a number of contraindications:

  • pregnancy (may cause miscarriage);
  • bradycardia;
  • hypotension (lowers blood pressure);
  • age up to 12 years;
  • bronchial asthma.

It can be harmful for allergy sufferers – it can provoke an attack. Means with calendula are not recommended to be used together with sedatives – this can cause excessive lethargy and drowsiness, which is especially dangerous for drivers.

Tincture of calendula

For treatment, tincture of calendula is most often used. It can help with viral and bacterial lesions, dermatological diseases, strengthens the walls of blood vessels. The pharmacy version of the product is more concentrated than homemade, it contains alcohol, which enhances some of the properties of calendula.

To prepare homemade tincture, 2 tablespoons of calendula inflorescences are poured into 100 ml of vodka or medical alcohol, insisted for a week. But in its pure form, the product cannot be used – before use, it must be diluted with water in a ratio of 1:20.

DiseasesApplication of marigold flowers
HypertensionTo lower blood pressure, drink 50 ml of warm water with 30 drops of tincture (3 times a day). Course treatment – a month.
Wounds, abrasions, burns and other skin damageIn a glass of water you need to pour 5 ml of tincture. The gauze is moistened in the liquid and then the damaged area of ​​the skin. It is not necessary to blot dry with a tissue.
Angina, inflammation of the gums, stomatitisPrepare a mouthwash – 5 ml of tincture / 150 ml of water. Then rinse your mouth and throat with it several times a day. If you need to treat sores, then they are cauterized with cotton swabs, which are moistened in pharmacy tincture.
Diseases of the gastrointestinal tractTake tincture daily, 20 drops, a week later – 25 ml, but already 2 times a day. Course treatment – a month. The tincture also speeds up metabolism, improves appetite, relieves inflammation and relieves spasms.
AcneTo get rid of acne, daily you need to wipe your face with an alcohol tincture of calendula. Additionally, you can make a lotion – mix 3 ml of glycerin, 15 ml of boric acid solution, 30 ml of water and 50 ml of calendula tincture. The product is used in the morning and evening.
Erosion of the uterine neckUse the douching method with a solution from a glass of water with 5 ml of tincture. This method removes swelling and inflammation, treats vaginal sores.

Alcohol tincture of calendula helps to strengthen hair, eliminate oiliness and restore the sebaceous glands. To do this, pour 50 ml of the product into 1 liter of hot water and rinse the curls after shampoo.

A tincture of flowers and leaves of calendula is used to prepare a bath for the body, steam for the face. It helps to solve problematic skin problems. The tincture is added to beeswax in a ratio of 105 ml: 150 g. The balm is then used instead of a healing ointment.

Calendula oil

For treatment and in the field of cosmetology, calendula is often used in the form of oil. You can make it yourself or buy it ready-made . The oil can be used for aromatherapy, as a bactericidal, anti-inflammatory and soothing agent. Cosmetic oil Calendula (cosmetic oil) does not contain alcohol and mineral components. It nourishes and softens the skin well, fights calluses and corns, and also:

  • evens out complexion;
  • narrows pores;
  • softens rough skin;
  • accelerates the healing of cracks in the anus;
  • lightens age spots;
  • reduces symptoms of varicose veins;
  • eliminates traces of post-acne;
  • heals microdamages;
  • moisturizes and softens dry skin;
  • normalizes the work of the sebaceous glands;
  • improves blood circulation;
  • improves skin firmness and elasticity.

The oil quickly heals sunburns, restores frostbite areas, soothes inflamed skin, and tones. Makes scars and scars less noticeable, protects against free radicals and ultraviolet radiation, restores youth. It should be applied directly to problem areas. Can be added to home cosmetics – 5 g per 25 g of the product.

Many people prefer to use homemade calendula oil. To do this, fill ¾ of a glass jar with plant flowers and fill it to the brim with olive oil. Tightly close the lid, insist 10 days in a cool place. Shake the jar daily. On the 11th day, the oil is filtered through gauze or a sieve, stored in the refrigerator.

Such a tool is harmless and non-toxic, it can even be used as a baby rub. It well eliminates rashes, redness and irritation after diapers. But if you choose a pharmacy tincture, it is recommended to give preference to a 10% solution. For colitis, gastritis, neurasthenia, stomach ulcers, diseases of the biliary tract and liver, drink 15 ml twice a day, half an hour before meals.

The external use of oil for cosmetic purposes helps to remove bruises, ulcers, spider veins, peeling, and soften dry skin. With a headache, the composition is rubbed into the temples, forehead and back of the head. The oil is added to masks and creams, rubbed into the cuticles and nails – this helps to get rid of the fungus.

Application in cooking

Due to the pleasant smell and rich calendula, the flowers are used as a seasoning for the first and second courses, cereals, salads. It perfectly complements dumplings, puddings, gives an exquisite shade to fish and meat. Marigolds make refreshing and tonic drinks. Petals are added to:

  • cornbread;
  • rice;
  • custard;
  • omelette;
  • Apple juice;
  • muffins;
  • scrambled eggs
  • buckwheat.

Calendula officinalis is used as a natural coloring agent for soups, sauces and dressings. In this case, dried flowers are ground into powder. It is also ideal to give an unusual shade to pastries and milk, butter makes it more tart. Such a product is better suited for sandwiches.

Calendula is added to tea, syrups, liqueurs, confectionery and desserts. A special decoction is added to alcohol tinctures. Take a mixture of marigolds with mint in a ratio of 2: 4. The collection is poured with a liter of boiled water, kept on low heat for 30 minutes.

Then it is slightly cooled and honey is added to the warm solution to taste, then 1 liter of vodka is poured. Cover tightly with a lid and store in the refrigerator. This liqueur can be added to cakes, pastries, it harmonizes well with meat and cold appetizers.

Calendula flower syrup is very useful. It can not only be added to any sweet dishes and pastries, desserts, but also to ice cream, used as a sauce for pancakes, pancakes and pies. The syrup is recommended to drink before going to bed – it restores it and helps to cope with insomnia.

To prepare it, take 50 g of calendula flowers, pour 0.5 liters of boiling water and leave for half an hour. Then filter, add 500 g of sugar and dissolve it over low heat. Cool and store in a glass container.

Calendula is a plant that does not harm, has almost no contraindications. It is used in cooking, cosmetology, preparing healing ointments and tonic drinks, even festive liqueurs. Calendula helps to get rid of negative symptoms in various diseases and improve health.

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