Gardening

Shepherd’s purse: medicinal properties and uses, how to take it and contraindications

If you want to know what the shepherd’s bag is good for, in this article we offer you all the most remarkable information about its therapeutic qualities, how it is used and prepared and its possible contraindications.

What is the shepherd’s bag?

The medicinal properties of the shepherd’s purse ( Capsella bursa-pastoris L. ) have traditionally been used to make a multitude of natural remedies .

Popularly the shepherd’s bag is also known as bread and cheese or paniquesillo .

It is a medicinal plant that, although it is native to Europe, today it can be found practically all over the world.

Shepherd’s purse belongs to the botanical family of Crucifers, as well as such healthy vegetables as broccoli , arugula or arugula , watercress , cauliflower , turnips or Brussels sprouts ( cabbages ). These vegetables are under study due to their potentially protective qualities against different types of cancer.

This annual herbaceous plant can grow to about 50 cm tall and blooms for much of the year. The stem is thin and cylindrical, its whitish flowers and leaves are very characteristic and easily recognizable.

Its leaves and flower tops are used to make medicinal preparations.

What properties does the shepherd’s bag have?

Traditionally, paniquesillo has been considered a very interesting medicinal plant as it is attributed with very beneficial therapeutic virtues, such as:

  • Antibacterial
  • Antihemorrhagic
  • Astringent
  • Healing
  • Vasoconstrictor
  • Vasodilator
  • Diuretic
  • Invigorating

Although we currently have scientific evidence that attributes to this plant effect:

Anti-hemorrhagic, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, healing and antibacterial.

To ensure that you use a plant that contains all the properties but does not have the danger of having pesticide residues used during its cultivation and treatment, choose an ecological shepherd’s bag . For your health.

uses shepherd's bag

Medicinal uses of shepherd’s purse

  • Stop internal bleeding , such as nose, mouth, stomach and even uterus and postpartum hemorrhage. And also external bleeding.
  • Improve skin conditions such as acne, dermatitis, or eczema.
  • Regulate the menstrual period and avoid heavy periods.
  • Facilitate wound healing.
  • Purify the blood.
  • It is diuretic, so it prevents fluid retention , gout and edema.
  • Beneficial in cases of delicate stomach
  • One of the traditional uses of the shepherd’s purse is to stimulate blood circulation.
  • It can help against Premenstrual Syndrome
  • Applied locally, this plant reduces inflammation and pain caused by insect bites.
  • Cut the  diarrhea.
  • Combat hypotension or low blood pressure.
  • It improves urinary infections , which is why it is highly indicated for cystitis.
  • Calms intestinal pain
  • Relieve hemorrhoids (sitz baths with warm water).
  • Avoid or delay the appearance of varicose veins.
  • It can be a natural help in cases of fatty liver
  • Due to its abortifacient effect, it is totally contraindicated during pregnancy .

How to use the shepherd’s bag

The shepherd’s bag can be used in infusion, in tincture, making sitz baths, adding it in the preparation of soaps, creams or other homemade preparations that you prepare.

And the plant itself is edible (it has a spicy touch, similar to arugula or arugula )

Although the most common and simple way to use it is orally taking it as an infusion. These are the steps to follow:

  1. Put a teaspoon of the dried plant in a cup
  2. Add 200 ml of very hot water
  3. Cover and let stand 4 to 8 minutes.
  4. Filter and drink when it has cooled down a bit

If you want, you can sweeten with some stevia leaves .

You can drink up to 3 cups of shepherd’s purse infusion per day.

Contraindications of the shepherd’s purse

The consumption of medicinal plants is not recommended during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.

It is also not recommended in children under 2 years of age and in children under 12 years of age, medicinal plants should only be used under the supervision of a specialist.

Medicinal plants should not be taken for more than two weeks in a row. After two weeks of using this plant, it should be stopped for a week before taking it again.

In the case of shepherd’s purse, it should not be taken two weeks before going through surgery.

If you are under pharmacological treatment, you should know that medicinal plants can interact with medicines, nullifying their action or strengthening it. Therefore, it is essential that before taking medicinal herbs you consult with your doctor and your pharmacist if in your particular case it is safe to take this plant.

This is just general information and is not a substitute for professional advice. If you want to know if this plant can be beneficial in your particular case, consult a health professional who can advise you and guide you on a treatment based on your needs and your medical history.

Consulted bibliography

https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/acm.2017.0267

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6152647/

http://dspace.espoch.edu.ec/handle/123456789/3811

https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/jmf.2016.3877

https://www.cancer.gov/espanol/cancer/causes-prevention/risk/diet/informative-sheet-cruciferous-plants

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4469962/

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