Parts used: primarily fresh leaves and fresh herbs, very rarely the whole dried plant.
Pharmacy name: watercress herb – Nasturtii herba (formerly: Herba Nasturtii).
Botanical description. It is a perennial plant with mostly recumbent shoots, 30-90 cm long, forming dense sods. Shoots can over-winter. Stems are hollow, ribbed-furrowed. The leaves are dark green, fleshy, odd-pinnate, the lower ones are trifoliate, and the upper ones are 5-9-lo pasty. White flowers with yellow anthers are collected in an umbrella-shaped inflorescence. The bitter core, found in the same places, is very similar to the watercress. But he has purple anthers. (Mixing these 2 plants is not dangerous, since their action and taste are similar.) Watercress blooms from April to June. Likes clean springs, slow flowing, with moderate water temperature, streams, rivers and ditches.
Collection and preparation. Fresh grass is best picked in the spring, but can be harvested throughout the year. Since it works only fresh, it is not dried. It is rational only to prepare juice from fresh plants. The pharmaceutical industry produces canned watercress juice. For the spring course, it is advisable to collect only the leaves of young plants that have not yet blossomed.
Active ingredients: gluconasturtin, senfol-glycoside, phenylethylsenfol, potassium, iron, arsenic, iodine, bitterness, vitamins A, C, D.
Healing action and application. Based on the fact that scientific medicine is interested in refreshing and activating spring courses to improve metabolism and non-specific stimulating therapy, then we can say that watercress is also used for medical purposes. This medicinal plant is used in the form of fresh juice and as a salad, along with fresh dandelion and nettle leaves (with insufficient kidney function – with the addition of young birch leaves), as a gastric remedy, for violations of the liver and gallbladder, metabolic disorders, to which also include rheumatic diseases and gout.
My special advice.I’m one of those people who classify fresh salads as health products because they’re much more effective than we think based on the ingredients they contain. There are many medicinal plants whose fresh shoots in spring can be useful. Along with the leaves of birch, dandelion and watercress, I can also recommend young basal leaves of yarrow, fresh leaves of stonecrop and spoonwort, very young shoots of chistyak, as well as all kitchen greens. Salad, half of leaf or head lettuce, and half of the numerous greens that grow in the spring in our meadows, forests and gardens, thoroughly flavored with green onions and onions, with a little oil and lemon juice, is an excellent health remedy against decline strength and spring fatigue. Fresh greens must always be,
Application in folk medicine. All that has been said so far also applies to folk medicine, in which they prefer lettuce or mashed watercress leaves with a small amount of sugar. Indications: general weakness, metabolic disorders, constipation, skin diseases, nervousness, cough, lung diseases, rheumatism and gout, diseases of the gallbladder, liver, stomach, intestines, bladder and kidneys.
Side effects. Excessive passion for watercress can lead to mild irritation of the gastric mucosa, and sometimes the kidneys.