Lavandula angustifolia L. (Labiatae), commonly called lavender flower; in French, it is Lavande officinale; in German, Lavenclel.
The plant originally came from the Mediterranean region and Southern Europe, but is now cultivated in almost any area with a sunny, dry climate.
The name of the plant almost surely derives from the Latin lavare, meaning to wash. The ancient Romans added the flowers and the essential oil to their baths, and stored sachets of the flowers with their clothes. The Greeks used the oil to help support skin problems, and in the Middle Ages lavender was used to kill lice and bedbugs.
Traditional Support Uses
Stimulant, antispasmodic and tonic. Also carminative and diuretic. More recently aromatherapists have recommended it as a "harmonizing" agent, good for the support for headache and sleeplessness.
Commission E Recommendations
Lavender can be used to help support circulatory and gastrointestinal disorders, flatulence, insomnia, mood disturbances, nervous stomach and restlessness.
There has been pathetically little modern research on this herb. Laboratory studies suggest that it is both antimicrobial and antifungal. Very limited clinical trials with inhalation suggest some improvement in chronic bronchitis. For many centuries, the essential oil has been recommended as an antiseptic, but clinical trials have never been undertaken. The two main ingredients of the oil, linalyl acdetate (25-45 percent), and linalool (25-38 percent) are not known to possess any useful health properties, though they do have a lovely aroma.
One to two teaspoon of dried herb soaked in one cup of boiling water for 15 minutes may be consumed as a tea three times a day.
The herb is taken as a tea (1.5 g) or 1 - 4 drops of oil (20 - 80 mL) can be taken internally in dilute form. A lavender bath can be prepared with 20 - 100 g of the dried herb in 20 litres of water. The herb or oil is included in calming teas and prepared sedatives, cholagogues and tonics.
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Hot tea brewing method: Bring freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Place 1 tea bag for each cup into the teapot. Pour the boiling water into the pot, cover and let steep for 2-4 minutes. Pour into your cup; add milk and sugar to taste.
Iced tea brewing method: (to make 1 liter/quart): Place 5 tea bags into a teapot or heat resistant pitcher. Pour 1 1/4 cups of freshly boiled water over the tea itself. Steep for 5 minutes. Quarter fill a serving pitcher with cold water. Pour the tea into the serving pitcher straining the tea bags. Add ice and top-up with cold water. Garnish and sweeten to taste.
Plants belonging to the Labiatae family seem to show cross-sensitivity on the basis of clinical history. So someone allergic to marjoram might very well be allergic to lavender and other related Labiatae family members.
The tests have never been done, but it is unlikely that either linalyl acdetate or linalool would have an effect on standard workplace urine drug screening tests.
More Photographs - Lavender Flower (Certified Organic) Tea
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* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Products are intended to support general well being and are not intended to treat, diagnose, mitigate, prevent, or cure any condition or disease. If conditions persist, please seek advice from your medical doctor. Information provided at ZooScape.com relies partly on Traditional Uses. The essence of the current American rule on Traditional Uses is, as stated by FTC, "Claims based on historical or traditional use should be substantiated by confirming scientific evidence, or should be presented in such a way that consumers understand that the sole basis for the claim is a history of use of the product for a particular purpose."