Encyclopedia of Vedic Astrology: Remedies: Notable Herbs in Human Welfare, Chapter XV, Part – 10

Dr. Shanker Adawal

Marsh Mallow (Althaea officinalis)

Its common names are wymorte, mortification root, sweat weed and althea.

Marsh mallow is found in almost all tropical and subtropical parts of the world and almost all tropical parts of the United States. It was once eaten as a food. The Romans regarded it as a vegetable dish.

The plant is four to five feet tall. The roots are used to soothe inflammations and irritations of the urinary systems. It is sweet and cool.

Marsh mallow contains convallarin, starch, mucilage, pectin, oil, sugar, asparagin, and phosphate of lime, cellulose and glutinous matter.

Marsh mallow is a tonic, demulcent, diuretic and emollient. It is also mucilaginous. It is used to treat for chronic wasting and consumptive diseases, tuberculosis, diabetes, and dry cough.

As a poultice it’s good for sore or inflamed areas: it soothes and lubricates. An infusion is good for lung troubles, hoarseness, catarrh, dysentery and diarrhea. The tea is also good to bathe sore eyes. It’s valuable in all kidney diseases and pneumonia. It is an important herb for promoting the healing of broken bones.

Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)

Its common names are common milkweed, cottonweed, common silkweed, silky swallowwort, Virginia silk and swallowwort.

Both native Americans and western pioneers used this herb. The Appalachian tribes brewed a tea from leaves; the Shoshones pressed it in the hand until it was firm, and then chewed it like a gum; the Rap-pahannocks used it to cure ringworm and rubbed it on affected parts.

During World War II the Department of Agriculture experimented to see if milkweed could take the place of kapok, used in flotation devices: experiments were conducted to see if the sap could be used as a substitute for rubber.

Milkweed gives the strength of ego necessary to stop dependency on food drugs, or alcohol.

Milkweed contains a crystalline substance called asclepione, allied closely to lac tucone, as well as fatty matter of a waxlike character, caoutchouc, gum, sugar, salts of acetic acid and other salts.

Milkweed is an emetic, diuretic and purgative. It is useful for kidney problems, water retention, dropsy, gallstones, and asthma and stomach ailments. Milkweed juice may be used externally on warts. An infusion of rootstock may produce temporary sterility.

Note: Milkweed is poisonous in large quantities.

Mullein (Verbascum Thapsus)

Its common names are Aaron’s rod, candlewick, blanketleaf, feltwort, flannel flower, great mullein, Jacob’s staff, hedgetaper, shepherd’s club, velvet dock, mullein dock and velvet plant.

This herb was introduced from Europe and is now common in the United States. The Navajos combined it with ordinary tobacco to help mental disorders. Others used smoke from the herb for curing pulmonary troubles.

All parts of the plant are used i.e. leaf, flower, and roots. It is used for bronchial disorders and inhibits certain bacteria.

It gives strong sense of conscience and truthfulness.

Mullein leaves contain mucilage and gum as well as two resins-one soluble in ether, the other not. The flowers contain rum, resin, fatty matter, a glucoside, acrid fatty matter, free acid, phosphoric acid, uncrystallizable sugar, mineral salts, some potassium and lime and yellow volatile oil.

Mullein is a demulcent, emollient, astringent, expectorant and vulnerary. The flowers are specifically sedative and inflammatory.

Mullein tea from the leaves is a good remedy for hoarseness, bronchitis, coughs, bronchial catarrh and whooping cough. The tea is also used for gastrointestinal catarrh and cramping in the digestive tract. Tea made from flowers relieves pain and induces sleep. The tea or fomentation of leaves boiled or steeped in hot vinegar and water may be used externally for inflammations or painful skin conditions.
For respiratory problems or nasal congestion a person may breathe a vapour from hot water with a handful of leaves added. A poultice can be used for wounds and sores.

It is also good for bleeding from the lungs or from the gastrointestinal tract.


Dr. Shanker Adawal
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