Goldenrod (Huang Hua)
Botanical Name: Solidago canadenis, S. ordora, S. vigaurea, S. gigantea
Goldenrod is used to reduce pain and swelling. It is often used in Europe to treat bladder and kidney problems. It is also famous for its ability to treat allergies, skin problems and cardiovascular issues. Using goldenrod in the winter can help build a person’s immunity to prevent flu and in preparation for the spring and summer season of allergies.
Below is an overview of Goldenrod (Huang Hua), combining and interpreting the best of Western Science, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Shamanism, Folklore and more. Gain a balanced and thorough understanding of the healing properties of Goldenrod (Huang Hua).
Western Name: Goldenrod
Also Known As: Early Goldenrod
Organs/Systems: Lungs, Sinuses, Skin
Key Western Actions & Medicinal Uses: Anti-inflammatory, Diuretic, Anti-fungal, Antioxidant, Diaphoretic, Expectorant, Astringent, Antiseptic, Carminative, Tonic.
Pin Yin: Huang Hua
Also Known As: Yi Zhi Huang Hua
Meridians: Liver, Gallbladder
Key TCM Actions & Medicinal Uses: Dispels Wind/Clears Heat: sore throats, colds, headaches, whooping cough, infantile convulsions, urinary tract infections (UTI’s) Resolves Swelling and Obstructions/Removes Toxicity: jaundice, kidney stones, fungal infections of the hand, carbuncles, swelling on the back.
Parts Most Frequently Used: Aerial Parts of the Plant, Flowers, Leaves
Flavors/Temps: Pungent, Bitter, Cool
Caution: Generally considered safe.
History/Folklore: Do not confuse goldenrod (Solidago canadenis) with Verbascum densiflorum, which is also sometimes commonly called “goldenrod” but which is a different genus and species of plant. The word “solidago” means “to make whole” in Latin. The species S. canadensis and S. odora are considered to be the most medicinal, but all species of goldenrod are safe and healing.
When the herb was presented to Queen Elizabeth I, in England it commanded high prices, until it was identified to be growing wild all over England!
Early American colonists called goldenrod tea, “Liberty Tea” as they drank it instead of the black tea after the infamous Boston Tea Party (when British tea was thrown overboard into Boston harbor in a sign of revolt over tea taxes). The tea was so popular it was even exported to China! The colonists also used the flowers to make dye with.
Some say goldenrod is higher in antioxidants than green tea. Some think they are allergic to goldenrod, but this is not so as the plant’s pollen is quite sticky and carried by insects and not in the wind the way allergy causing pollens are.
Goldenrod is frequently used in Europe to treat urinary tract infections and to prevent kidney stones. It is considered a natural kidney and bladder remedy as it increases the flow of urine while soothing inflamed tissues. The plant’s astringing and antispectic qualities tighten and tone the urinary tract. Goldenrod is also recognized as a kidney tonic, helping to restore, re-balance and nourish the kidneys, especially if the condition has become chronic.
Goldenrod tonics are easy to make. Cut off the top third of the plant in full bloom in fall. Fill a jar with chopped flowers, leaves, and stalks (it is OK to include the roots, if you have them); then add 100 proof vodka, filling the jar to the very top. Seal the jar air tight and the tincture will be ready in 6 weeks.
Folklore says that the stem of the plant made an excellent divining rod and if grown near the house it would bring good fortune to the family. It is considered a symbol of good luck and good fortune. Legend says wherever goldenrod grows treasure can be found. It is consequently used in spells for attracting money and wealth.
The flowers are edible and can be dipped in batter and fried for a tasty treat. Native Americans chewed goldenrod leaves to relieve sore throats and roots to relieve toothaches.
Goldenrod contains natural rubber and Thomas Edison experimented with creating a natural fertilizer that would maximize the rubber content of each plant. Henry Ford gave Edison a Model T with tires made from goldenrod. The rubber is only contained in the leaves.
Volatile oil, Caprinic acid, Plagonic acid, Caprylic acid, Oenantahylic acid, Rutin (a yellow crystalline substance), Glycosides, Alcohols (Pinene and Limenenes), Tannins, Resins, Ascorbic acid, Alkaloids (Skimmianine and Graveoline).
130+ Species in U.S.
Goldenrod can crossbreed with other plants. As a result, there are over 130 species of goldenrod in the U.S. alone.
Cardiovascular System Aid
Goldenrod contains rutin, a powerful flavonoid that is known to benefit the cardiovascular system.
It is recommended that when using Goldenrod tea that you drink it between meals.
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