blue vervain benefits

Blue Vervain Benefits & Dosage & How To Use

Blue Vervain, also known as Verbena hastata, is a beautiful flowering plant that belongs to the Verbena family. The traditional use of Blue Vervain dates back centuries, with Native Americans using it to treat various ailments such as headaches, colds, and insomnia. Today, this herb is still highly regarded for its numerous health benefits and is commonly used as a natural remedy for various conditions. This article will explore blue vervain benefits, dosage and how to corporate it into your diet.

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Distinct and Identify Blue Vervain

Vervain is a well-known herb with a long history of use in many countries. However, there often needs to be more clarity between terms like Verbena, Blue Vervain, and others. If you are interested in Verbena, you may have come across names like Vervain, Verbena Officinalis, Verbena Hastata, Common Verbena, Lemon Verbena, and more.

In everyday life, this confusion is common, but in this article, we aim to provide accurate scientific information. Sometimes, this mix-up can lead to misunderstandings and negative consequences.

So, What Is Verbena? Is vervain the same as Blue Vervain? What about Verbena Officinalis? Let's differentiate between these terms and explore the benefits and usage of Blue Vervain.

What Is Verbena?

Verbena refers to a large genus of plants in the Verbenaceae family. It has over 250 species, many of which are used for medicinal purposes or as ornamental plants. The common names for Verbena are Vervain and Verveine.

What is Blue Vervain?

Blue Vervain, also known as Verbena Hastata, is a species of flowering plant within the Verbena family. It is native to North America and grows in wet meadows and along riverbanks.

Blue Vervain Plant

Other Names of Blue Vervain

Various names across different regions and cultures know Blue Vervain. Here are some of the most common terms:

  • Verbena hastata
  • American Vervain
  • Simpler Joy
  • Swamp Verbena
  • Blue Vervain

Features and Characteristics of Blue Vervain

Blue Vervain has a tall, slender stem that can reach up to 6 feet in height. Its leaves are long serrated and grow opposite each other on the stem. The plant produces tiny blue-violet flowers that bloom from July to September.

Vervain Vs Blue Vervain & Verbena Officinalis

While vervain and Blue Vervain are part of the verbena family, they are different species with distinct characteristics. Verbena Officinalis, or common vervain, is a European species used in traditional medicine for centuries. It is often confused with Blue Vervain due to their similar names, but they have different properties and benefits.

Verbena Officinalis

Blue Vervain Benefits

Anxiety & Depression

Blue Vervain has been traditionally used as a natural remedy for anxiety, depression, and stress. Studies have shown that compounds in this herb can help promote feelings of calmness and relaxation.

A study on the therapeutic effects of plant extracts on mental health has identified Blue Vervain as a beneficial herbal remedy for conditions such as menopausal anxiety, anxiety accompanied by nervous tics, tremors, or spasms [1].

Blue vervain benefits anxiety depression

Another study on menopause with homeopathic and herbal medicine has mentioned a traditional formula containing Blue Vervain that is effective for women going through menopause. This formula explicitly addresses symptoms like mild anxiety, depression, night sweats, insomnia, and hormonal imbalances. The formula includes Passion Flower, Chaste Tree Berry, Dang Gui, Blue Vervain, Black Cohosh, and Cactus [2].

In addition to its utility in addressing menopausal symptoms, Blue Vervain also has anxiolytic properties. In the book titled "The Natural Medicine First Aid Remedies" by author Stephanie Marohn, a formula by Clinical herbalist and consultant David Winston, A.H.G, of Washington, New Jersey, is mentioned.

This formula uses tinctures at around 3-4 ml, three times a day, containing two parts motherwort, 1 part Blue Vervain, 1 part kava-kava, and 1 part ashwagandha. This formula is effective in reducing anxiety, promoting calmness, and benefiting individuals experiencing rapid heartbeat due to anxiety [3].

Epilepsy (Seizures) and Convulsions

Epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent, unprovoked seizures. These seizures, which can vary in severity, result from sudden, disorderly discharges of brain cells. Convulsions, often associated with epilepsy, are involuntary, rapid contractions of the muscles, causing shaking of the body.

Vervain hastata is used as a traditional remedy by Native Americans for various conditions, particularly those related to the nervous system [5] [6].

A comprehensive study on epilepsy treatment methods in Italy between the 19th and 20th centuries mentions the experiment conducted by L. Akanmu and colleagues on mice, using doses of 500, 700, and 1000 mg/kg of Blue Vervain.

This experiment revealed that this herbal remedy helped reduce sleep latency, enhanced pentobarbital-induced sedation, aided in seizure control, and managed acute seizures and comas caused by medical conditions [4].

Blue Vervain benefits for Epilepsy

An evaluation of the effectiveness of traditional African thermotherapy also highlights specific herbal remedies in practice, including Vervain hastata and lemongrass, for managing conditions such as cognitive decline and seizure disorders, such as epilepsy and peripheral blood circulation issues [7].

Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a painful disorder where the tissue that usually lines the inside of the uterus, called the endometrium, grows outside of it. This condition can cause severe pain, especially during menstruation. Blue Vervain has been used in traditional medicine to provide relief from endometriosis-associated pain through its anti-inflammatory and abortifacient effects.

A study exploring the impact of Verbena hastata on the uterus discovered that the hot extract of European Verbena stimulates the secretion of luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone. This extract exhibits chronic gonadotropin inhibition and immune modulation, contributing to its anti-implantation and abortifacient effects. These effects are particularly beneficial in addressing the underlying causes that lead to endometrial displacement [8].

Verbena Hastata May Help Endometriosis Patients

Furthermore, a research paper titled "Approach to Pain in Endometriosis Patients: Systematic Literature Review" mentions that Verbena hastata, along with other herbs such as Alchemilla mollis and Uncaria tomentosa, holds promise in treating pain and enhancing the quality of life for women with endometrial displacement [9].

Flu and Colds & Anti-Inflammatory Properties

Verbena Hastata has anti-inflammatory properties that are helpful in the treatment of upper respiratory system ailments. It has been used as a traditional remedy for flu, colds, and fever. Additionally, it can also help with other associated symptoms such as headaches, sore throat, and coughing.

In the book "Medicinal Perennials to Know and Grow" by Dan Jason and Rupert Adams, Blue Vervain is suggested to offer numerous health benefits, including relief from conditions such as the flu, colds, headaches, throat issues, lung congestion, liver disorders, intestinal worms, irregular menstruation, and cramps [9]

Additionally, the research also notes that Verbena hastata may have interactions with blood pressure medication and hormone therapy. Overdosing can lead to vomiting and diarrhea [9].

A study conducted by Akuodor and colleagues also concurs that the ethanolic extract of Verbena hastata has analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and antipyretic effects, as observed in experiments on mice, with promising results [11].

Notable

Above are the health benefits of Blue Vervain that we have compiled through research and scientific evidence.

In traditional medicine, Blue Vervain is also believed to offer various other benefits, such as improving digestion, relieving muscle tension and pain, treating skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis, stimulating lactation in nursing mothers, and promoting healthy sleep patterns.

Furthermore, Blue Vervain is also used for spiritual purposes in some cultures. It is believed to have protective properties against harmful energies and spirits, as well as promote inner peace and relaxation [12].

Moreover, as mentioned earlier, many people often need clarification on different types of vervain. The fact is that due to many shared characteristics within the same genus, various verbena species, such as Blue Vervain or verbena Officinalis, also have similar health-related properties.

However, this doesn't necessarily mean that Blue Vervain offers the same benefits as Verbena Officinalis or Vervain. In reality, most contemporary research focuses on Verbena in general or Verbena Officinalis in particular. For Blue Vervain, studies are limited or are only mentioned in broad-spectrum reviews.
Here are some potential benefits of Vervain. While Blue Vervain may have similar effects, one should not rely solely on these assumptions.

  • Insomnia
  • Infections
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • It May Possess Antitumor Effects.
  • It May Protect Nerve Cells.
  • Helps Improve Breast Milk Production
  • Cardioprotective
  • Antimicrobial And Antibacterial
  • Supports Detoxification
  • Anti-Inflammatory Activity
  • Headaches
  • General Aches And Pain
  • Digestive Dysfunction
  • Upper Respiratory Tract Symptoms
  • Boosts Gum Health
  • Antidiarrheal Activity

Side Effects of Blue Vervain

Like any other herbal supplement, Blue Vervain may cause side effects in some individuals. These can include:

  • Gastrointestinal discomfort (such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea)
  • Allergic reactions (such as skin rashes or difficulty breathing)
  • Interactions with certain medications (including blood pressure medication and hormone therapy)

It is essential to consult with a healthcare professional before adding Blue Vervain to your regimen, particularly if you have an underlying medical condition or are taking any medications.

Additionally, pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid using Blue Vervain due to limited research on its safety for these populations.

Blue Vervain Dosage and Administration

Blue Vervain is primarily available in herbal supplements, tinctures, teas, or capsules. The dosage may vary depending on the form and brand of the product.

Follow the instructions the manufacturer provides carefully, or consult with a healthcare professional for proper dosage information.

Typically, 2 grams of dried Blue Vervain herb is safe and effective in traditional medicine practices [9]. However, always start with a low dose and gradually increase if needed.

How to Consume Blue Vervain?

Blue Vervain can be consumed in various forms, including:

  • As a tea: This is the most common and traditional way to consume Blue Vervain. Steep 1-2 teaspoons of dried herb in hot water for 5-10 minutes and drink up to three cups daily.
  • As an herbal supplement: Blue Vervain is available in capsule or tablet form, usually standardized to contain a specific number of active compounds. Always follow the recommended dosage on the product label.
  • As a tincture: Tinctures are liquid extracts from soaking herbs in alcohol or vinegar. They are typically more potent than teas and should be used as directed by a healthcare professional.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Blue Vervain has been traditionally used for various health benefits due to its anti-inflammatory, analgesic, soothing, and antispasmodic properties. However, more research is needed to validate these claims and determine the exact effects of Blue Vervain on specific health conditions.

    FAQs

    Are There Benefits of Blue Vervain for Skin?

    There are potential benefits of Blue Vervain for the skin. It's often used in herbal remedies to manage conditions like jaundice, wounds, sores, ulcers, and acne due to its anti-inflammatory properties [12]. Moreover, its antimicrobial and antibacterial properties may help in combating skin infections. However, more scientific research is needed to support these claims.

    Do Blue Vervain Benefits Extend to the Eyes?

    There isn't ample scientific evidence to support the benefits of Blue Vervain specifically for eye health, so it's recommended to consult a healthcare professional before using it.

    Is Blue Vervain Beneficial for Hair?

    There is currently no scientific evidence to support the claimed benefits of Blue Vervain for hair health. While some sources may promote these benefits, it is essential to be cautious due to the lack of scientific substantiation.

    Can Blue Vervain Be Smoked?

    Although Blue Vervain has been used in various forms, there is no traditional or scientific documentation supporting its use by smoking. As with any herb, smoking could introduce potential risks such as respiratory irritation. Always consult a healthcare professional before trying new forms of consumption.

    References

    1. Winston, David. Eclectic and Botanical Therapeutics for Mental Health. 2002.
    2. Gardner, Cindee. “Ease through Menopause with Homeopathic and Herbal Medicine.” Journal of PeriAnesthesia Nursing, vol. 14, no. 3, June 1999, pp. 139–143, https://doi.org/10.1016/s1089-9472(99)80007-0. Accessed 11 Oct. 2020.
    3. Marohn, Stephanie. The Natural Medicine First Aid Remedies: Self-Care Treatments for 100+ Common Conditions. Google Books, Hampton Roads Publishing, 1 Sept. 2001, books.google.com.vn/books?hl=en&lr=&id=uS2fWUHFi9oC&oi=fnd&pg=PR13&dq=blue+vervain+Anxiety&ots=hmRSZnU2YC&sig=0IyNaWnC8Dzlcq78SR0KsP1G6b0&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=blue%20vervain&f=false. Accessed 28 Oct. 2023.
    4. Tagarelli, Giuseppe, et al. “Treating Epilepsy in Italy between XIX and XX Century.” Journal of Ethnopharmacology, vol. 145, no. 2, Jan. 2013, pp. 608–613, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2012.11.043. Accessed 13 Mar. 2022.
    5. Esene, Okoh, et al. “An Overview of the Facts, Myths and Treatment of the Disease Condition Known as “Epilepsy.”” Journal of Dental and Medical Sciences, vol. 6, no. 2, Apr. 2013.
    6. Peer, Aamir Nabi , et al. Herbal Remedies in Epilepsy: The Present Scenario. Jan. 2018, www.researchgate.net/publication/326625536_Herbal_Remedies_in_Epilepsy_The_Present_Scenario.
    7. Celine, Nwokeke Chinyere. A Review of Heat Therapy in African Traditional Medicine. 19 Aug. 2020, article.sciencepublishinggroup.com/pdf/10.11648.j.jher.20200603.16.pdf.
    8. Ilhan, Mert, et al. “Novel Drug Targets with Traditional Herbal Medicines for Overcoming Endometriosis.” Current Drug Delivery, vol. 16, no. 5, 1 June 2019, pp. 386–399, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6637095/, https://doi.org/10.2174/1567201816666181227112421. Accessed 28 July 2020.
    9. Ferreira, Vanessa, et al. “Approach to Pain in Endometriosis Patients: Systematic Literature Review.” Journal of Biosciences and Medicines, vol. 10, no. 11, 1 Jan. 2022, pp. 1–27, https://doi.org/10.4236/jbm.2022.1011001. Accessed 24 Oct. 2023.
    10. Jason, Dan, and Rupert Adams. Medicinal Perennials to Know and Grow. Google Books, Harbour Publishing, 2 Sept. 2023, books.google.com.vn/books?hl=en&lr=&id=5pbUEAAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PT6&dq=blue+vervain+Anxiety&ots=eW1IHjxx0v&sig=fc_iPRvov9VgpY5GItLCqwLjyto&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=blue%20vervain%20Anxiety&f=false. Accessed 28 Oct. 2023.
    11. Akuodor, G. C., et al. PHARMACOLOGICAL EVALUATION of VERBENA HASTATA LEAF EXTRACT in the RELIEF of PAIN and FEVER. Dec. 2011.
    12. “American Blue Vervain - Verbena Hastata | Washington College.” Www.washcoll.edu, www.washcoll.edu/learn-by-doing/food/plants/verbenaceae/verbena-hastata.php#:~:text=The%20roots%20of%20the%20plant. Accessed 28 Oct. 2023.
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    Author

    Ralph S. Albert, with over 10 years of expertise in nutrition and research, now heads the Research division at Vinatura Supplements. His dedication and extensive knowledge ensure top-quality articles on nutrition and health, collaborating with a skilled team. He has successfully completed The VINATURA Expertise Research Training Program, underscoring his commitment to Vinatura's mission. Ralph has also published numerous articles and conducted valuable research in the field, making him a trusted resource for individuals on their wellness journey.

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