Blackthorn tree – Health Benefits
Blackthorn tree or Prunus spinosa
The Blackthorn tree is esoterically known as both the Mother of the Woods and the Dark Crone of the Woods. Blackthorn or Prunus spinosa is a large deciduous, much-branched shrub or small tree growing to 5 metres tall. with blackish bark and dense, stiff, spiny branches. Its small alternate leaves are oval, stalked” finally serrate, dull above and hairy below.
The Blackthorn tree gives flowers in early spring with five pure creamy-white petals. The fruits (sloes) are dark blue globose drupes, with a whitish bloom and astringent green flesh, ripening in autumn, and harvested after the first frosts. It is found in Europe, western Asia, and northwest Africa. It is also locally naturalised in New Zealand, and eastern North America.
She is the earliest species of prunus and seen as mother of all plums and cherries’ Fruit stones have been found at Neolithic dwelling sites and so Blackthorn has had a long association with man’
Blackthorn tree – Health Benefits
1. Blood cleanser
The flowers, leaves and bark have depurative properties. That means, they help in blood purification and detoxification to remove impurities from the body fluids’ The flowers are rich in rutin and quercetin that aid in purification of blood. It prevents gout and rheumatism as well’
Blackthorn flowers improves digestion, relieves constipation, heals dyspepsia, reduces bloating’ and cures diarrhea, especially in children’ Herbal tea prepared by steeping two teaspoons of dried blackthorn flowers in a cup of water stimulates appetite. Consuming blackthorn jam or marmalade cures indigestion or upset stomach’
3. Reduces kidney and bladder problems
Blackthorn flowers can be used to remove fluid retention, treat kidney stones and other kidney problems because of their diuretic properties’ In addition, the herb is considered good for managing bladder spasms and also helps to relieve cramps in the stomach and nerve Pain’
4.Treat inflammation of mouth and pharynx
The use of this herb help to get rid of mild inflammation of mouth and pharyngeal mucosa’ When dealing with sore throat, you can gargle with fresh juice extracted from ripe sloe berries’ Furthermore, you may gargle with an infusion prepared from blackthorn leaves to heal inflamed tonsils.
5. Treats breathing disorders
Preparations containing fl owers are considered useful for the treatment of ailments of the respiratory tract. Due to their expectorant properties, the flowers can fight common cold and cough. A decoction prepared from the bark of this tree can be taken to lower fever’
6. Works as an outstanding beauty remedy
The pulp of ripened sloe berries is combined with other ingredients to make commercially available astringent face masks to enhance your beauty. Besides, you can apply blackthorn extract on your skin to maintain skin elasticity for younger looiing skin as it is rich in vitamin C and tannins’ Applicition of blackthorn oi1 can prevent stretch marks.
7. Relieves fatigue and boost vitality
Drinking water infused with powdered blackthorn bark has a calming effect on the nerves’ Thus, it helps relieve fatigue and boosts vitality’ In addition, blackthorn extract mixed in tea or water is also useful in this regard’ When dealing with issues like insomnia, shivers, lack of interest’ due to menopause, one can steep half a teaspoon of dried blackthorn flowers in a cup of boiling water for about five minutes’ Strain and drink this herbal tonic when it cools.
The fruit is more usually used in jams, jellies’ syrups, conserves and as a flavouring for sloe gin and other liqueurs.Besides, it can be mixed with vanilla ice cream, too.Even the seeds of these fruits are edible in raw form or cooked. Moreover, the dried fiuits and leaves of this plant can be used to make herbal tea. In powdered form it can be used as a spices in soups or curries. Similarly, the edible flowers can be sugared or crystallized