A creeping annual with tiny white flowers and oval-shaped leaves, chickweed grows without cultivation throughout most of North America. Like other edible weeds, chickweed has many health benefits.
Vitamins and minerals: Fresh chickweed contains high amounts of vitamin C, as well as vitamins A, D and B. Iron, calcium and potassium can also be found in chickweed.
Weight loss: Chickweed has traditionally been said to aid weight loss. This weed both curbs appetite and acts as a diuretic, helping its eaters to lose water weight.
Respiratory ailments: Chickweed can soothe mucus membranes and help relieve many respiratory conditions, including asthma, allergies and bronchitis, as well as itchy, inflamed eyes. Research has even shown that chickweed can prevent the growth of bacteria that leads to tuberculosis.
Skin care: Chickweed’s soothing properties also extend to skin care. Chickweed can soothe inflamed and irriated skin conditions such as acne, eczema, rashes and burns, as well as heal cuts.
How to Enjoy Chickweed
Chickweed leaves can be steamed or added raw to salads. You can also make a tea from the leaves by steeping them in a cup of boiling water for ten minutes.
Photo Credits (top to bottom): Photo By Paige Filler/Courtesy Flickr; Photo By fyrefiend/Courtesy Flickr.