African Wormwood (Artemisia afra) medicinal uses are many. This plant is one of the oldest and best known medicinal plants, and is still used effectively today in South Africa by people of all cultures. In fact this plant was recently in the news, because it is being used as an ingredient in herbal tea given to the people of Madagascar and other African countries, which they claim helps in the treatment of Covid-19 symptoms and as a preventative.
The plant is also known as wild wormwood, African wormwood (Eng.); wilde-als (Afr.); umhlonyane (isiXhosa); mhlonyane (isiZulu); lengana (Tswana); zengana (Southern Sotho)
African Wormwood Medicinal Uses Overview
- The list of medicinal uses covers a wide range of ailments such as coughs, colds, headaches, chills, dyspepsia, loss of appetite, gastric issues, colic, croup, whooping-cough, gout, asthma, malaria, diabetes, bladder and kidney disorders, influenza, convulsions, fever, heart inflammation, rheumatism and is also used as a purgative.
African Herbal Preparations and Uses
Preparations of the African Wormwood roots, stems and leaves are used in many different ways and taken as enemas, poultices, infusions, body washes, lotions, smoked, snuffed or drunk as a tea.
Infusions & Decoctions – Traditionally an infusion or decoction of Artemisia Afra, mixed with honey or sugar to form a syrup, is highly regarded as a treatment for colds, flu, sore throats and bronchial and respiratory conditions like pneumonia, asthma, whooping cough, croup, bronchitis and coughs. An infusion of leaves or roots of this species is also used for the treatment of diabetes.
Inhalant – The steam from leaves boiled in water is inhaled to relieve the symptoms of respiratory ailments, and the vapour from a hot infusion is used to steam the throat of scarlet fever patients. A common practice is also to insert fresh leaves into the nostrils to clear blocked nasal passages.
Poultice – A poultice of the leaves can be applied to relieve neuralgia, to treat the swellings in mumps and is placed on the abdomen to treat infantile colic.
African Wormwood Herbal Recipes
African Wormwood Tea
Add a quarter cup of fresh or dried leaves to a cup of boiling water. Allow the infusion to draw for 10 min. Then strain the mixture and the add some honey to sweeten the tea.
Information is for educational and informational purposes only and may not be construed as medical advice. The information is not intended to replace medical advice or treatment offered by healthcare professionals.