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Latin Name: hibiscus rosa-sinensis
Alternative Name: garden hibiscus, chinese hibiscus
Forms Available: flower, root, leaf
Hibiscus – hibiscus rosa-sinensis, hibiscus sabdariffa
High in vitamin C and bioflavonoids, hibiscus has slightly astringent properties. It is useful for treating mild colds, flus, bruising and swelling.
This is the plant that made Celestial Seasonings famous. The large tropical hibiscus flowers make a beautiful ruby red tea. The flavor is somewhat tart, with a sweet aftertaste.
There are more than 200 species of the Hibiscus and most of them are believed to have some medicinal properties. Different species are used in Ayurvedic, Chinese, and Western herbal medicines. Hibiscus sabdariffa is prized for its mild laxative properties and for its ability to promote urination.
Aromatherapy & Health Uses: Constipation, mild bladder infections, mild nausea. Apply the herb or extract externally for sunburn. The flowers are used for loss of appetite. Hibiscus tea has a gentle laxative effect on the body. It is also used for colds that affect the respiratory tract and the stomach to dissolve phlegm. Hibiscus flowers also are used as a diuretic and for disorders of circulation. Aqueous extracts of hibiscus leaves have a relaxing effect on the uterus. In Chinese medicine, preparations of the plant are used to treat carbuncles, swelling and inflammation of the skin scalding, conjunctivitis, and herpes zoster. To make a tea, pour boiling water over 1-2 tablespoons of the dry flowers and strain after 5-10 minutes. For flavor you can add lemon and orange peel. Caution: Some species may not be recommended for pregnant women.
Used to relieve menstrual pain and cramping, reduce phlegm and coughing, cleanse blood, improving complexion and hair growth.