Eyebright or Euphrasia has a long history in folk medicine as well as in ancient folklore since it was believed that it could enhance psychic abilities. This herb whose name was derived from Euphrosyne who is the Greek goddess of good cheer, joy, and mirth was considered a blessing to many during the time when modern medicine was non-existent and many people suffered from eye problems since it was considered a natural eye medicine. As a medicinal herb, it was believed that it could treat bad memory and vertigo. Nicholas Culpeper (1616 – 1654), an English botanist, herbalist, and physician also claimed that it could strengthen the brain.
At present, there are herbalists who use it for eyestrain and to relieve inflammation caused by infections, colds, coughs, sinus, sore throats, and hay fever. The parts of the plant which are commonly used include the leaf, the stem, and the flowers.
Characteristics of the Eyebright Plant
Euphrasia Officinalis, Eyebright, or Eyewort has been used as a medicinal herb for the eyes for hundreds of years. This herbaceous plant which is native to Central Europe, Western Europe, and some parts of Southern Europe can reach heights of growth between 4 to 12 inches. It produces two-lipped flowers that are generally white and usually with purple veins, leaves that are small and elliptical in shape, and flat capsule fruits that contain several seeds.
Eyebright plants are semi-parasitic which means they feed on the nutrients and water from neighboring plants, especially grasses.
Modern Medicinal Value of Eyebright
Eyebright tea is not only good for the eyes, it may also improve the overall health of the respiratory system and treat allergies, colds, congestions, blocked noses, swollen nasal passages, inflamed sinuses, mild to moderate coughs, and bronchial conditions. Other healing and medicinal benefits of this wonder herb (which contains many nutrients including natural vitamins A and C) are listed below:
- It may help improve liver damage
The Euphrasia herb contains aucubin. It is an iridoid and iridoids have been used to help patients recover from drug and alcohol liver damage. This practice supports the study conducted in mice wherein the said monoterpenoid-based compound was found to protect against liver damage in the animal subjects.
- It may help heal heart damage
A test-tube study suggested that aucubin, the same compound that may treat those with liver damage may also help patients recover from a heart attack since it was found to minimize the scarring of the heart tissue under dangerous and damaging conditions like after a heart attack. In a similar study which involved mice, aucubin inhibited the scarring of the tissue by reducing oxidative stress. These studies propose that the said iridoid has the potential to improve heart function, since scarring can reduce the heart’s ability to pump blood.
- It fights harmful bacteria
Plant compounds in Euphrasia can reduce the growth of certain bacteria such as the Staphylococcus aureus bacteria which can lead to eye irritations. This herb is known to have anti-fungal, antiviral, and anti-bacterial properties that can help fight a number of infections.
- It is anti-aging
Eyebright tea is rich in powerful antioxidants such as flavonoids which help delay the signs of aging. It helps prevent sun damage as it combats free radicals or unstable molecules which contribute to the formation of wrinkles, the damage of cells, aging, and the development of different kinds of diseases.
People during the ancient times always believed that good health was a gift from the gods. A person who is healthy is the one who is happy. Thus, it is understandable that Eyebright or Euphrasia was named after Euphrosyne, the Greek goddess of joyfulness. There was no doubt that this healing herb brought joy to many as it was used to heal, treat, and strengthen the immune system of many. Make your purchase now and experience the health benefits of Eyebright tea.