Both rutin and carotene
The motherwort herb tastes rather bitter, and for sure those who have tried tinctures and decoctions from it have noted this. This flavor is imparted by diterpene compounds such as leocardine and leosibirin. The maximum amount of these compounds is found in flowers and young, but fully formed leaves (2.6-3.2 mg / g fresh weight, but can reach 4 mg / g). Alkaloids (0.035-0.4%) are found in the grass of motherwort five-lobed, which are contained only at the beginning of flowering; also found stachydrin (0.35%, but can reach 0.5-1.5%), 0.0068% leonurin, saponins, tannins, iridoids (ayugoside, ayugol, haliridoside, reptoside, 0.26% ursolic acid, flavonoids - derivatives of quercetin, kaempferol, apigenin, 5-9% tannins, a very small amount of essential oil (0.05%), carotene, sterols - 0.28% (β-sitosterol and stigmasterol. Polish authors report the presence in the raw material lavandullyl foliazide - on average, 0.2% (up to 1%).
In addition, motherwort accumulates quite a lot of nickel and chromium, with 65% of the former and 50% of the latter going into aqueous extracts (infusion and decoction). And in general, it has been known for a long time that when motherwort is grown in ecologically unfavorable regions, it is capable of accumulating heavy metals.
For those wishing to get even more in-depth knowledge, we present the basic requirements that must be met by high-quality whole raw materials: extractives extracted with 70% alcohol - at least 15%; humidity - no more than 13%; total ash - no more than 12%; ash insoluble in 10% hydrochloric acid solution - no more than 6%; blackened, browned and yellowed parts of plants - no more than 7%; stems, including those separated during analysis - no more than 46%; organic impurity - no more than 3%; mineral impurity - no more than 1%.
In the European Pharmacopoeia, motherwort is required to contain at least 0.2% flavonoids in terms of hyperoside.
What Doctors Say
Motherwort has been used in folk medicine since the 15th century. Since the 30s of the last century, it has been used in medicine as a sedative in the form of a water-alcohol extract. Introduced into scientific medicine in the USSR since 1932.
The main active ingredients in motherwort heart, or ordinary (Leonurus cardiaca) and five-bladed(Leonurus quinquelobatus) flavonol glycosides are considered, although all substances isolated separately are inferior to the action of galenic drugs. So the phenomenon of synergy has not been canceled and, apparently, each group of chemical compounds makes its own contribution.
Motherwort preparations are non-toxic, have a calming effect on the central nervous system, sedative properties, lower blood pressure, slow down the rhythm of heart contractions, increase the strength of heart contractions, and have anticonvulsant activity in the experiment. They have a beneficial effect on carbohydrate and fat metabolism, reduce the level of glucose, lactic and pyruvic acids, cholesterol, total lipids in the blood, and normalize the indicators of protein metabolism.
In practical medicine, motherwort preparations are used as substitutes for valerian, and they do not have valerian side effects. They are used as a means of regulating the functional state of the central nervous system, as a sedative in cardioneuroses.
Motherwort preparations are used as a sedative for increased nervous excitability, cardiovascular neuroses, hypertension, coronary heart disease, myocarditis, insomnia, vegetative dystonia, neurasthenia and psychasthenia, neuroses. The use of motherwort in patients with premenopausal and climacteric periods with functional disorders of the central nervous system gives positive results. Motherwort is effective as an adjuvant in hyperthyroidism.It is also prescribed for neuroses of the gastrointestinal tract, flatulence, spastic pain.
Motherwort extract is well tolerated by patients and is effective in cases where valerian is commonly used. An extract and tincture of motherwort herb in 70% alcohol is recommended as a sedative, significantly superior to valerian preparations, for cardiovascular neuroses, hypertension, angina pectoris, cardiosclerosis, heart defects, as well as for brain contusions.
Motherwort is widely used in many countries. In Romania, doctors use it not only as a heart remedy, but also for Graves' disease and epilepsy. In England, motherwort is recommended for hysteria, neuralgia, heart weakness and shortness of breath.
In Bulgaria, motherwort is used as a hemostatic agent. It has been established experimentally that motherwort preparations accelerate the process of blood coagulation. In Bulgarian folk medicine, motherwort is also used as a general tonic for tuberculosis, various nervous diseases, as a diuretic and as a means of regulating the menstrual cycle.
In the folk medicine of Ukraine, the aerial part was used as an antitussive agent for bronchial asthma, it was also used for cystitis, edema, rheumatism, epilepsy, and stomach cramps.
In Russian folk medicine, motherwort is known as a remedy for palpitations. Take for all kinds of excitement, nervous shocks, hysteria, neurasthenia, heart weakness, neuroses of the cardiovascular system, angina pectoris, cardiosclerosis, myocardial dystrophy, various forms of hypertension (as a means of dilating blood vessels, lowering blood pressure), impotence and many other diseases ...
From napara to tincture
Most likely, the pharmacy may meet motherwort tincture (TincturaLeonuri), which is prepared with 70% alcohol (1: 5). Transparent liquid of greenish-brown color, low odor, bitter in taste. Available in dropper bottles of 25 ml. Assign 30-35 drops 3-4 times a day.
It is interesting that special experiments were carried out, where the efficiency of the extraction of active substances with various concentrations of alcohol was determined, and it turned out that exactly 70% alcohol extracts the most useful compounds. The vodka we were accustomed to turned out to be a loser. True, in fairness, it should be noted that flavonoids are maximally extracted at such a concentration, and the rest of the compounds are modestly silent.
The people prefer a fresh plant, using the juice squeezed out of it. Juice from a fresh plant is taken 3 times a day, 30-40 drops per 1 tablespoon of water half an hour before meals. For the winter, motherwort is prepared by mixing 2 parts of fresh juice with 3 parts of alcohol. Take 3 times a day, 25-30 drops in water.
For cooking infusion of motherwort herb (InfusumherbaeLeonuri) 15 g (4 tablespoons) of raw materials are placed in an enamel bowl, poured in 200 ml (1 glass) of hot boiled water, covered with a lid and heated in boiling water in a water bath with frequent stirring for 15 minutes, cooled for 45 minutes at room temperature, filtered , the remaining raw materials are squeezed out. The volume of the resulting infusion is topped up with boiled water to 200 ml. Take 1/3 cup 2 times a day 1 hour before meals. The prepared infusions are stored in a cool place for no more than 2 days.
Both juice from a fresh plant and an infusion from a dried one are taken with weakened heart activity, with heart neurosis, weak pulse, shortness of breath. It is also used for gastrointestinal diseases. Motherwort is also used for various nervous shocks, for fears, stresses, etc. as a means of calming the nervous system, which is not contraindicated even for pregnant women.
With increased blood pressure, it is used in a mixture in equal parts with marsh creeper grass, hawthorn flowers and mistletoe leaves, 40 g per 1 liter of boiling water.
Motherwort is part of a number of medicinal collections.
Honey, fiber and paint
However, motherwort can be used not only to calm down the nervous system, exhausted by the stresses of our difficult times. It is a good honey plant that produces nectar even during drought. The fatty seed oil is suitable for making high quality varnishes and for impregnating paper and textiles to make them waterproof. A fiber can be obtained from a plant that is close in quality to that of flax and Chinese nettle ramie, and the aboveground part of the plant, or rather a decoction from it, stains the tissues in a dark green color.