What Is Wormwood?

Much used in traditional medicine, Bitter Wormwood (Artemisia absinthium) is a herb which needs to be specially mentioned in our healthcare blog. If you know Absinthe then you probably know Wormwood too. It was a highly intoxicating beverage of the 19th century which was later on banned due to its toxicity. Absinthe was not said to be the same without Wormwood.

Native to Europe, this perennial has olive green leaves with a white hairy covering studded with yellow flowers. As the name says it, this plant is mainly known for its use against worms!

Medicinal Uses or Natural Ayurvedic Remedies of Wormwood

  • Wormwood helps to destroy intestinal parasites and improves digestion. Bitter in taste (thanks to absinthin and artabsin), wormwood was taken before meals for this benefit. It is claimed that the bitter taste in the mouth increases saliva, releases bile and other digestive juices naturally enabling smooth digestion of the food consumed thereafter. Hence, it is suitable to those with poor appetite and weak digestion.
  • Used in gastric pain, bloating, acidity and other related ailments.
  • Helps as a purgative.
  • Wormwood is a herbal aid to recovery from long term illnesses. It supplies the body with essential antioxidants to repair and redress.
  • It helps to improve blood circulation.
  • Studies claim that it has neuroprotective effect which reduces the harmful effects of oxidative stress on the body. The brain is rejuvenated and the cognitive function is enhanced.
  • In diabetics, it may help to lower the blood sugar levels and normalize the lipids.
  • It is also a natural sedative and pain reliever.
  • The essential oil is effective against round worms and other bugs.
  • It takes a place in deodorants with its particular smell.
  • Wormwood spray is used as an insecticide and moth repellant.

Warning

Do not use this herb if you have any chronic ailment, had seizures, are pregnant or lactating without the approval of a herbalist. Drug interactions and allergies are known to occur with Wormwood usage. Overdose is fatal!

-Aparna K.V.