Mother Earth Living

Natural Health

Better living through nature

Add to My MSN

Every Herb Has a Story: Passionflower Benefits

11/30/2010 9:45:19 AM

Tags: Randy Buresh, Passionflower, Stress Relief, Insomnia, Every Herb Has A Story, Medicine Cabinet, Adaptogenic Herbs, Sleep, Tips, Natural Remedies

R.BureshRandy Buresh (Registered Nurse and Herbalist), is the co-owner and founder of Oregon’s Wild Harvest. Oregon’s Wild Harvest grows, harvests and produces their own medicinal herbal products, many of which use the herbs grown on their certified Biodynamic® and Organic farm in Sandy, Oregon. www.oregonswildharvest.com 

Passionflower is an herb whose uses have little to do with its name. Rather than inducing feelings of passion, this herb is much more likely to make you calm, relaxed, and even sleepy. Passionflower gets its name from the beautiful flowers' radial filiments, which Christian missionaries likened to the crown of thorns used in Christ's crucifixion.

11-30-2010-1
Passionflower's name derives from Christian symbolism.
Photo by Randy Buresh
 

Known for its fragrance and unique colorful flowers, passionflower was traditionally used as a calming herb. Today, the properties in passionflower still make it useful as a soothing sleep-aid and in supporting relaxation in times of stress. Scientists believe that passionflower works by increasing levels of a chemical called gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain. GABA reduces the activity of some brain cells, inducing a greater state of relaxation. Passionflower is often combined with other herbs used for relaxation such asvalerian, lemon balm, skullcap, or kava. Some people apply a poultice of the root of passion flower to the skin for use as a topical remedy for healing of the skin.

Since passionflower is a nervine, meaning that it has an effect on the nervous system, it can intensify the effects of prescription sedatives. The two should not be taken simultaneously. 

Nervines like passionflower are considered complementary herbs to use along with adaptogens, like ashwagandha. Ashwagandha is a unique herb in that it can have a very calming effect, but it can also energize a person when needed—the best of both worlds, all in one little herb.

Herbs like passionflower, ashwagandha, skullcap and kava are able to help with stress because they improve the body’s physiological response to stress, which decreases the demand placed on the adrenal glands and helps to lower cortisol levels. Lower cortisol levels help to improve sleep patterns and health in general. The roles that stress and the systems of the body play in your health are interrelated.

It’s an herb with a story—and a long history. An herb to remember when the stress of the season keeps you from enjoying it, or from sleeping as well as you’d like. We can’t eliminate stress from our lives, but we can help our bodies better adapt to stress by using the many herbs available to do just that. So get passionate about your health; add a little passionflower!

*Statements herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration, and are not intended to treat or diagnose any disease or health condition. It is also recommended that patients check with their doctors before taking herbs, to ensure that there are no contraindications with prescription medications. 



Related Content

Key Ingredient in Turmeric May Help Treat Arthritis

Researchers have found that curcumin, the ingredient in turmeric that gives it its distinct coloring...

Lower Your Frequency of Migraines with Butterbur

New guidelines suggest using butterbur root extract can drastically reduce the frequency of migraine...

Sleep-Deprived Mothers Can Suffer From Momnesia

A new study has found that lack of sleep can cause memory loss.

Herbal Treatment for Seasonal Affective Disorder

If you find yourself suffering from seasonal depression as the weather gets cooler, try these herbal...

Content Tools




Post a comment below.

 

MY COMMUNITY
no image
valerykenery
8/29/2014 12:04:10 AM
no image
HarvestRight
8/21/2014 5:22:39 PM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 10:03:07 AM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 9:59:22 AM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 9:30:07 AM
no image
melisastarr
8/19/2014 12:57:22 PM


Subscribe today and save 58%

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living!

Welcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $14.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $19.95.