Parts used: grass.
Pharmacy name: sweet clover herb – Meliloti herba (formerly: Herba Meliloti).
Botanical description. It is a biennial plant with a branched ascending or erect stem. The height varies between 50 and ISO cm. The leaves are trifoliate, with a serrated edge. Numerous yellow moth flowers are collected in long loose spicate brushes. The whole plant smells like coumarin. This scent intensifies as it dries. Blooms from June to August. The usual habitats of sweet clover are gravelly wastelands. It is also found along forest edges, wastelands and railway embankments. High sweet clover (Melilotus altissimus Thuill.) differs little from the described species. It is also used for medicinal purposes. Less effective white sweet clover (Melilotus albus Med.) – with white flowers.
Collection and preparation. They collect flowering grass, while preferring the upper, not coarsened parts. Dry in the shade. Temperatures above 35°C are undesirable. The aroma intensifies during drying, so it is necessary to dry slowly.
Active ingredients: melilotin, from which, during drying, coumarin is released by enzymatic cleavage; saponins, tannins, flavonoids, mucus and some essential oil (primarily in flowers).
Healing action and application.The action of the plant extends mainly to the veins. We can say that thanks to sweet clover, capillary resistance (resistance force of the thinnest blood vessels) increases and capillary permeability decreases. The main area of application of sweet clover is varicose veins and hemorrhoids. There are numerous herbal products that are taken internally, as well as ointments containing the active ingredients of sweet clover. Due to the changing content of active substances in pharmaceutical raw materials, many doctors believe that the use of tea should be abandoned, but I think that it can still be recommended for venous diseases. In a monograph developed by a commission of the German National Health Service, under the heading of the use of sweet clover and its products, it is indicated: “Internal use: disorders in chronic venous insufficiency, such as as a feeling of pain and heaviness in the legs, nocturnal cramps in the calves, itching and swelling. As an additional remedy in the treatment of thrombophlebitis, post-thrombotic syndrome, hemorrhoids and lymphostasis. External use: bruises, sprains and superficial hemorrhages.
- Sweet clover tea: 1-2 teaspoons of crushed raw materials are scalded with boiling water and infused for 10 minutes. After straining, the tea is ready to drink. Dosage: 2-3 cups every day.
Use in homeopathy. Melilotus homeopathic remedy is made from fresh flowering plants. It is used for severe headaches, migraines and nosebleeds. For children suffering from convulsions, Melilotus also brings relief. Recommend breeding D4 and Dg. Take 5-10 drops every two hours or several times every day.
Application in folk medicine. In folk medicine, sweet clover is used mainly as a remedy for convulsions and hemorrhoids. A favorite form is tea, but they also make ointments in pork fat. They are used to care for the veins and as a rub for swelling of the legs. On inflamed joints and tumors they put a herbal pillow of sweet clover, they also try to use it for boils and carbuncles so that they ripen. Sweet clover tea is used, in addition, for coughing. A 1926 German handbook lists a collection called “emollient herbs” that includes sweet clover. This mixture is used now, so I give her recipe.
- Emollient herbs: marshmallow leaves, mallow leaves, sweet clover, chamomile, flaxseed are mixed in equal amounts and ground into a coarse powder for compresses. The mixture is placed in a linen bag, which is kept for 10 minutes in hot water, and then applied to the sore spot.
Side effects. When using sweet clover, you can not be afraid of side effects. Sometimes, however, it causes headaches in sensitive people when taking tea, which is due to the presence of coumarin.