Angelica Root Angelica archangelica stomach pain gas menstrual cramps

ANGELICA ROOT
Botanical:
Angelica archangelica (European) Family: Umbelliferae (carrot) - Apiaceae (parsley) Other common names: Garden Angelica, Holy Ghost Plant, Archangel Root, Wild Celery, Wild Parsnip, Dead Nettle, Masterwort

Praised throughout the centuries as a miraculous gift from the angels and a panacea for all ills, Angelica Root is a well-known remedy for stomach pain, flatulence, sour stomach, heartburn, menstrual cramps, colic and general indigestion.The root also helps treat arthritis and relieves the discomfort of colds. It is an excellent stimulant and overall tonic for good health.

History:
This highly aromatic plant is a moisture-loving native of damp meadows and riverbanks, and it is a hardy biennial or perennial ornamental that grows to a height of two to eight feet.  American Angelica Root (Angelica atropurpurea) grows in northeastern and north central part of the United States and also Canada.  European Angelica (Angelica archangelica) grows mostly in the northern and eastern countries, and Chinese Angelica Root (Angelica sinensis and also called Dong Quai) is native to both China and Japan. Centuries ago, our “Angelic” herb is said to have received its name because it bloomed around the feast day of the Archangel Michael, and in northern Europe the day was often celebrated with singing, dancing and praising Angelica Root as a strong defense against all evil and even witchcraft.  According to tenth-century French legend, the Archangel Raphael revealed the secrets of the herb to a monk in order to ward off plague, and in 1629, the English herbal, Paradisus Terrestris, considered Angelica Root to be one of the most important herbs of the time. Angelica was even eaten as a vegetable and added to soups.  In Nordic countries, Angelica Root was used as a tranquilizer and considered a powerful medicine. Today, in many European countries, Angelica Root is still prized and used in a variety of modern drugs; it was listed in the German Drug Codex (1986). The oil is used for flavoring Chartreuse, gin, vermouth and a wide variety of liqueurs, and the candied stalks are a popular confection in Europe and a specialty in French regions. Some of the active ingredients in Angelica Root include furocoumarins, tannins, alpha-pinene, essential oils and linoleic acid.

Beneficial Uses:
Angelica Root is an aromatic and bitter tonic that supports the digestive system and helps remedy stomach pain, heartburn, sour stomach, dyspepsia and mild spasms of the gastrointestinal tract. The root helps increase the production of gastric
juices that aid digestion. It is especially effective against flatulence and feelings of fullness. The root is an appetite stimulant, and in East Indian medicine, Angelica Root is used to treat anorexia nervosa. Angelica is widely used in German pediatric medicine for colic and as an anti-spasmodic. Angelica Root is useful for all sorts of stomach difficulties, including gastric ulcers, cramps and vomiting.

Angelica Root is said to be beneficial for a sluggish liver and spleen.

As a strong emmenagogue, Angelica Root has been known to bring on menstruation and minimize pre-menstrual discomfort. It has also been widely used to reduce the discomforts of menopause.

Angelica is thought to help support good heart health and improve blood circulation.  It contains fifteen compounds that act much like calcium channel blockers, a class drug that is a standard treatment for angina and high blood pressure, and as such, it may be of great help in such cases.

This powerful aromatic possesses antibacterial qualities and as an anti-fungal, it is known to counter fourteen different types of fungus.

Use of Angelica Root has been known to improve lung function, relax tracheal muscles, and act as an expectorant (good for bronchial conditions).  It has helped treat colds and flu, intermittent fever and general weakness.

As a pain reliever, Angelica is said to be effecting in fighting headaches, cramps, rheumatic pain and can even help with insomnia.

Infusion: 1 oz. powdered root in 1 pint of boiling water steeped 5-10 mins 1 C 3 x’s daily
Combine Angelica and Horehound (a few drops in water with honey once an hour) For bronchial problems and deep-seated catarrh
                  Angelica and Chamomile For indigestion
                  Angelica, Willow Bark, Rosemary and Feverfew, For Headaches
                  Angelica, Licorice or Cinnamon For gastroenteritis
                  Angelica and Peppermint For improved memory
Decoction: 1 tsp dried herb/root in 1 C water bring to boil and simmer for 2 mins remove from heat and let stand 15 minutes 3x’s daily
Tonic: 1/4 to 1 tsp dried root taken as tea to stop cravings, treatment for alcoholics, convalescing from a debilitating illness
Tincture:  20 drops 3 x’s daily. 1 to 2 milliliters (1 tsp approx) (made by steeping 4 oz of root in 1 pint alcohol for 2 weeks)
Syrup: stems used for coughs
Capsule: 00 taken 3 times per day with each meal For anemia, For fungal infections of lungs, hands and feet, four capsules a day (powdered root in size 00 capsules, 2 capsules at a time OR - 1/4 to 1/2 tsp taken 3 times daily)
Poultice: Of tea from the roots to the chest is used in cases of whooping cough, gout, sunburn,
Wash: Decoction, combined with 1/2 part juniper berries has been used as an antiseptic wash, scabies, itching, skin rashes and wounds, venereal diseases
Cool Infusion: 1 C cold water,1 tsp root, let stand in a saucepan for several hours, then boil for 2 mins Steep 2 mins for tired eyes(combine with eyebright), cleanse skin, hemorrhage
Mouthwash/Gargle: combined with peppermint, lemon balm for bad breath, inflammation of the throat and mouth
Bath: A muslin bag full of leaves added to bath water to relax, Decoction of root 1½ Tbsp root in 2 C cold water; bring to boil; steep 5 min; add to bath water to soothe nervous conditions
Oil: externally, 10 drops of oil combined in 25 ml of sweet almond oil, applied as a massage to relieve pain in of arthritis, rheumatism, swellings, gout
Powdered: seeds have been used for skin lice,
Salves: infusion added to skin lotion to relieve rheumatic pains, hives or shingles

Veterinary:
Used as a general tonic and fertility aid and for removal of internal obstructions by naturopathic vets. Stems used as fertility aid. Seeds used as digestive tonic. Roots (given raw as shavings) to remove stones and hard matter of the bladder and bowels. Dosage (animals): A handful of stems, seeds and root shavings given daily in the early morning.


Culinary:
Candied stems and leaves. Candied stalks used in cakes and puddings. Stems to be candied should be collected in mid-summer (July-August in New England) Roots are preserved. Leaves dried and brewed for tea. Stems steamed and eaten like asparagus. Blanched stalks eaten like celery or cooked with rhubarb, gooseberries or plums to reduce acidity and to reduce sugar needed. Leaf midribs eaten like celery. Dried leaves used in brewing of hops bitters.  Seeds used for flavoring and making liquors. Used as a flavoring in liqueurs like Chartreuse and Benedictine, gin and vermouth. Flavor goes well with baked apples and rhubarb in ratio of 5-25% peeled stems added before baking. Tea can be mixed with other sweet tasting beverages Seed extracts and essential oils from root and stem used as flavoring. Used to flavor toothpaste also. Leaves used as garnish or in salads, soups and meat stews. Dried and ground leaves used in desserts, custards and pastries. Dried ground roots used in yeast breads, quick breads, cakes, muffins and cookies. Chopped stems good with pork. When simmering pumpkin, squash or sweet potatoes, add a bouquet garni of dried angelica leaf and bay leaf. A syrup made from the stems and leaves or a decoction of the root can be stored in the refrigerator then diluted to make a beverage drink or else poured over fruit salads. Stems used for jelly. Considered a vegetable in Iceland, Siberia and Lapland where the raw stems are eaten with butter. Laplanders wrap their fish in the leaves to preserve them on long journeys due to the leaves' antimicrobial properties. In Norway the powdered roots are used to flavor bread. Various members of the species have been used by the Chinook Indians. The roots were boiled for food. In Finland the young stems were baked in hot ashes and an infusion of the dry herb was drunk hot or cold. Also - the fresh herb was added to fish stew.


Contraindications:
Angelica should not be used by pregnant, lactating women. Avoid excessive exposure to sunlight.


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Disclaimer: The information presented herein by Organic Herbs Medicine Cabinet is intended for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.