common Sorrel
Rumex acetosa L.


Common Sorrel is a perennial plant with a steep, grooved stem, 30-100 cm tall, with a short taproot. The underside of the stem is reddish in color. The leaves are whole, arrow-shaped, soft, juicy, arranged alternately. At the base of the stem on long petioles, sessile at the top of the stem. The flowers are unisexual, small, pinkish or yellowish, collected in a complex panicle-type inflorescence. The plant blooms in June-August. Fruit - shiny, three-sided, dark brown grain on a reddish stalk, ripens in August-September. All parts of the plant have a characteristic sour taste.

For medicinal purposes, the above-ground part of the plant is used - rhizome leaves and roots. At home, the plant is either dried or preserved. Only undamaged leaves are selected for drying, they are rinsed in running water, cut into small bundles and dried in a well-ventilated place. When drying, the plant must be protected from direct sunlight. Leaves and stems can also be dried in forced dryers at a temperature of 50-70C. The shelf life of the drug is up to 1 year.

For canning, fresh leaves are carefully picked, rinsed thoroughly, rinsed with boiling water and rubbed through a fine sieve or blended. The obtained puree is heated in an enamel container, hotly filled in jars and sterilized for 1 hour. Unchopped common sorrel leaves can also be preserved. Rinse the leaves thoroughly, rinse with boiling water (up to 1 minute), put in jars, sterilize and seal tightly.

Meadow sorrels dig in autumn, when the above-ground part of the plant dies. They are carefully cleaned from the soil, washed in cold water, if necessary, the thickest roots can be cut lengthwise. The roots are wrapped in fresh air (hidden from the sun's rays) for no longer than two days and then placed on sieves in a well-ventilated room or dried in special dryers, not exceeding 50-60C. Root storage period, no longer than 2 years.

Meadow sorrel leaves contain water (92%), proteins (1.5%), carbohydrates (4%), fiber (1%), organic acids (0.7% - oxalic acid, malic acid, citric acid, succinic acid, salicylic acid); vitamins C (<90mg), A, B1, B2, P, PP, iron salts (2mg per 100mg), phosphorus (90mg), potassium (500mg), magnesium (85mg) and many complex organic substances and bitter substances.

The surface part of the plant contains no less than 5 flavonoid glycosides, hyperin has been identified in the leaves, quercitin and cyanidin in the flowers and fruits. Common Sorrel roots contain resins, starch, fiber, tannins and organic acids.

Medicinal significance

Thanks to the vitamin C and potassium compounds present in the plant, Common Sorrel and foods from it are valuable in the case of diseases of the cardiovascular system - atherosclerosis, ischemic heart disease, hypertension. Phenolic compounds and rutin in Common Sorrel strengthen capillaries and create antisclerotic activity.

Organic acids and fiber improve intestinal peristalsis, which is useful in cases of constipation. The rich vitamin content of Common Sorrel is useful in cases of avitaminosis, scurvy, colds and anemia. Common Sorrel is an excellent helper to restore strength after long-term illnesses.

Tannins present in the root of Common Sorrel have astringent, wound-healing and anti-inflammatory effects. Thanks to the bitter substances of Common Sorrel , it can be used as an appetite stimulant and gastric secretion enhancer.

In folk medicine, Common Sorrel is used as an anti-scurvy, anti-inflammatory, anti-hemorrhoid, anti-bleeding, wound-healing, anti-inflammatory, diuretic agent. Add to foods to improve appetite.

Healers and herbalists recommend using fresh leaves in the treatment of angina, gingivitis, rheumatism, scabies, non-healing wounds and ulcers. Common Sorrel leaves improve the functioning of the digestive tract, reduce fermentation processes in the intestinal tract, improve well-being in case of cardiovascular disease.

Fresh Common Sorrel juice is a natural choleretic agent, improves the functioning of the liver and gall bladder, and helps treat jaundice.

Common Sorrel root powder can be used at night as an effective laxative. The aqueous solution of the root is also used externally to treat skin diseases, hernias, furuncles, liver; it is used to rinse the throat during angina, the oral cavity for the treatment of stomatitis, periodontitis and gingivitis.

A decoction of Common Sorrel is an effective anti-bleeding and astringent agent during bloody diarrhea and dysentery.

Not recommended for use

Common Sorrel should not be used for medicinal purposes during pregnancy and lactation, and children should not be treated with it.

Common Sorrel should not be used in case of inflammatory diseases of the bladder and kidneys, gastritis with increased content of gastric juice, colitis of various etiologies, gastric and duodenal ulcers.

Experts do not recommend using meadow sorrel in large quantities and for a long time - the reason for this is that the oxalic acid present in the plant affects the body's mineral metabolism, as well as disrupts kidney function. The chemicals in meadow sorrel are known to inhibit the body's absorption of calcium and contribute to the development of osteoporosis.

When using meadow sorrel (as well as horse sorrel), it promotes the formation of oxalate stones in the kidneys, so it is preferable to use sorrel together with sour milk products.