Gratiola officinalis L.

Hedge-Hyssop is a perennial plant that tends to grow up to 50 cm in height. The erect stem is red-violet at the base, four-sided at the top. The rhizome is creeping, segmented, covered with reduced leaves - brown scales. The leaves are oppositely arranged, surrounding or sessile, the lower ones are entire, dull, the upper ones are pointed, toothed along the edge, reach 6 cm in length and 1.5 cm in width. Flowers arranged in leaf axils, white or pinkish yellow, bisexual. Fruit - a multi-seeded box with two nests. Seeds brown, small, triangular.

For medicinal purposes, Hedge-Hyssop is used, in folk medicine, rarely, but roots are also used. The leaves of the plant are harvested in the spring, until flowering, which begins in June and lasts until September. Hedge-Hyssop is dried by spreading it thinly on sieves in a well-ventilated room, or outdoors, placing the plants in the shade.

The finished drug is green and has no specific aroma, its taste is unpleasant - bitter, a little astringent. The drug is stored for up to 3 years, in cotton bags.

The roots are dug in autumn, when the plant has already flowered.

The poisonous cardiac glycosides gratiosides, more precisely, graciolin and gratiotoxin, as well as the no less poisonous cucurbitacin glycoside elatericide, saponins, alkaloids, tannins, essential oils and vegetable fats, malic acid, betulinic acid, graciolic acid, flavonoids, resins and bitter substances have been found in medicinal Hedge-Hyssop .

Medicinal significance

This plant is used as a cardiotonic agent and is based on its cardiac glycosides, which are equivalent to thimble glycosides in terms of their effect. It is the bitter and poisonous gracioside, which breaks down into glucose, graciogenin and graciotoxin as a result of hydrolysis. The alcoholic extract of the plant can be used in case of heart failure (experiments of Dr. SATomilin in 1949), but there are also much more effective means. It is important to use this remedy together with herbs that cover the digestive tract with mucus - thus protecting it from inflammation.

In folk medicine, dried and ground medicinal Hedge-Hyssop is used as a laxative, and fresh is applied to blood effusions, bruises, old ulcers, rashes and gout are treated with it.

Hedge-Hyssop water solution is used for jaundice, fever, edema, cardiac edema, ascites, arrhythmia, liver diseases, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, menstrual disorders, asthma and bladder papilloma.

In a stronger concentration, the plant also has an effect against helminths, it is especially strong against dwarf tapeworms and ascarids.

There are scientists who recommend using decoctions of this plant to quit smoking. Externally, decoctions and applications from dried Hedge-Hyssop are used against rheumatism, joint pain, skin itching, purulent wounds, neurodermatitis, chronic ulcers, scabies and eczema.

For men

Hedge-Hyssop is an ancient folk medicine used in cases of male impotence. Together with other herbs, it is used in mixtures to enhance fertility. In addition, this plant creates an aversion to smoking tobacco.

The plant is poisonous, so the doses of its use must be observed.

Not recommended for use

Hedge-Hyssop is a poisonous plant and it would not be desirable to use it uncontrolled, but to determine the exact dosage. Symptoms of poisoning - strong salivation, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, diarrhea, strong colic. In severe poisoning, convulsions, heart failure and collapse.

The consequences of such poisoning can be severe kidney damage. When using the alcohol extract, side-eye sensitivity, especially to the green spectrum, tends to appear; overdosage may result in complete non-perception of the green spectrum.

It is understood that Hedge-Hyssop cannot be used in any form during pregnancy and lactation, nor can it be used to treat children. The plant is not recommended for erosive gastritis, intestinal inflammation, colitis or enterocolitis, gallstones, stomach ulcers or intestinal ulcers, kidney failure.