It may have a cute-sounding name, but butterbur can be toxic. However, if prepared properly, it can be very beneficial as it’s proven to be effective against all sorts of health concerns, from simple headaches and cold to hypertension. Although it’s native to Asia, butterbur now commonly grows in so many regions on the planet.
Butterbur is actually related to sunflower even though it doesn’t look anything like it. The common herb bears tiny clusters of flowers and the plant itself usually grows no taller than a foot. Although it’s been used by traditional healers for many years now for treating a wide variety of maladies, using the plant as a home remedy without the supervision of an expert is not really a good idea. Just like what’s mentioned before, the herb can be toxic if prepared in the wrong manner — it can introduce some types of organic compounds in the body that can damage the liver and even potentially cause cancer.
So how can you take advantage of the medicinal and healing properties of butterbur? By getting it specially prepared at a health and food store. Just see to it that you get your supply of butterbur, which is commonly sold in the form of tea, from a reputable vendor to avoid any problem with using it. Also, it is definitely a wise move on your part to let your doctor know about your plan on using butterbur. This is most especially true if you are currently in the family way, taking prescription drugs or diagnosed with a particular medical condition.
Now that you know a little butterbur background, it’s time to put our attention on the numerous health benefits this very common herb is known to offer:
It Helps Cure Headaches
One of the most popular uses of butterbur is as a remedy for headaches. In fact, some varieties of butterbur are known to be very good at combating migraine. Either the natural form of butterbur or its extracts can be used to put an end to that nagging headache or even a migraine attack.
The Herb is an Expectorant
For so many years now, butterbur is given to individuals suffering from cough and cold as it helps promote the expulsion of excessive and thick mucus in the airway, thus putting an end to breathing troubles and even aching chest. Butterbur is also superb at treating fever which usually accompanies cough and cold.
Butterbur Can Treat Allergies
Traditional healers in Asia employ butterbur in treating allergies. It doesn’t come as a surprise because the said herb is an all-natural antihistamine which inhibits the action of histamines — compounds released by the body in reaction to injuries and inflammation, causing symptoms such as skin rash, sneezing, and eye dryness and itchiness.
It’s Good for Hypertension
A 2001 study showed that a particular compound in butterbur helped participants with hypertension to reduce their blood pressures. With the blood pressure normalized, one’s risk of heart disease and heart attack can be lowered. It is a good idea to eat heart-friendly foods and exercise regularly to help ward off hypertension.
The Plant Helps Cure Anxiety
Back in 2009, researchers discovered that the addition of butterbur to a mix of passionflower herb and valerian root (both of which are known as excellent anxiety remedies) created a very potent solution for anxiety. The said mixture of herbs also proved to be effective against the symptoms of depression.
Butterbur Treats GI Issues
Since the medieval times, traditional healers have been using butterbur as a remedy for an assortment of problems concerning the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. For instance, it is known as an effective remedy for ulcerations in the stomach and intestine that can bring great pain and discomfort to the sufferer.