Medicinal Herbs used in Wildcrafted Herbal Products' Therapeutic Creams and Compounds

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Medicinal Herb: Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens)

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Introduction

A small indigenous shrubby, creeping, evergreen plant, growing about 5 to 6 inches high under trees and shrubs, particularly under evergreens such as Kalmias and Rhododendrons. It is found in large patches on sandy and barren plains, also on mountainous tracts. The stiff branches bear at their summit tufts of leaves which are petiolate, oval, shiny, coriaceous, the upper side bright green, paler underneath. The drooping white flowers are produced singly from the base of the leaves in June and July, followed by fleshy, bright red berries (with a sweetish taste and peculiar flavour), formed by the enlargement of the calyx.


 

Wintergreen

Biological Name:
Gaultheria procumbens

Other Names:
Wintergreen, Canada tea, partridge berry, checkerberry, boxberry, wax cluster, spice berry, mountain tea, deerberry, spicy wintergreen, aromatic wintergreen, chink, ground berry, grouse berry, red pollom, redberry tea, hillberry, ivory plum

Parts Used:
Leaves

Traditional Applications in Herbal Medicine:
Stimulant, antiseptic, astringent, diuretic, emmenagogue, aromatic.

An old fashioned remedy. Taken in small, frequent doses, it will stimulate stomach, heart and respiration. Useful in chronic inflammatory rheumatism, rheumatic fever, sciatica, diabetes, all bladder troubles, scrofula, and skin diseases. Used for colic and gas in the bowels and for dropsy, gonorrhea, stomach trouble, and obstruction in the bowels The oil of wintergreen is used externally and internally. Useful for liniments.

Mostly used externally in Massage mixed together with other therapeutic oils to treat musculo-skeletal disorders.

Other indications include:
  • Tea of the leaves allays aches and pains.
  • Leaves used as a poultice for bruises, rheumatism, and arthritis.
  • Used for headaches, joint pains, inflammation, and menstrual cramps.
  • The oil contains methyl salicylate (oil for external use only).
  • Pain relief is related to the presence of methyl salicylate in the essential oil of the plant; when ingested the salicin is transformed into salicylic acid in the stomach.
Safety:
No information available. Some herbs are known to react with your medication. Please consult your physician before starting on any herb.

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Australia

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