Red Clover - Trifolium Pratense

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This Red clover (Trifolium pratense) monograph is an excerpt from the 1999, first edition of Dr. Sharol's book "Herbal Medicine From The Heart of The Earth." You can purchase the 2020, third edition of this book with an expanded materia medica/monograph section, herbal formulas and directions on making herbal products in Dr. Sharol's Book Store. You receive free shipping in the USA. The expanded 3rd edition materia medica, and additional herbal tidbits are also available as a kindle ebook at Amazon and details on this e-book are here.

Red clover - Trifolium pratense in the Fabaceae or Legume family

Part used: Flowers.

Taste/smell: Sweet.

Tendencies: Cooling.

Dosage: Infusion: 1 tablespoon per cup of water; or 1:1 fresh + dry strength liquid extract: 10-60 drops 1-4 times per day.

Mental picture and specifics: It is indicated for debilitated individuals and children with spasmodic coughs, salivary gland congestion, pharyngeal inflammation and chronic skin eruptions. Red clover is specific for swollen hard nodes, especially for single nodes and a stiff neck with cramping in the sternomastoid muscles that is relieved by heat and massage.

Use: (a) Mild antispasmodic, (b) Sedative, (c) Expectorant, (d) Blood thinner, (e) Mild alterative with a special affinity for the lungs, throat and salivary glands.

Red clover is used for dry hacking or spasmodic coughs such as in croup or whooping cough.

Red clover contains the estrogenic isoflavone compounds, formononetin and biochanin A. These isoflavones have very weak estrogenic activity compared with natural estrone or synthetic DES. Phytoestrogens can act as anti-estrogens to compete with estradiol for cytoplasmic receptors in estrogen-sensitive tissues. Soybeans, which also contain estrogenic isoflavones, have been implicated as being responsible for the low incidence of breast and other female reproductive cancers in Japanese woman who consume large amounts of soybean products. The same protective action may be possible with red clover and should be studied further.

Phytoestrogenic isoflavones are found in the leaves, stem, root and flower of Red clover.

Red clover is used for hot flushes as well as vaginal tissue support in menopause.

For extensive details on how phytoestrogens behave in humans and animals, see Herbal ABC's, The Foundation of Herbal Medicine".

Contraindications: It is contraindicated during pregnancy and for individuals using blood thinning agents. Red clover’s action as a blood thinner will potentiate the effect of other blood thinning agents.

If you are looking for directions on making teas or tinctures, please see our "Making Herbal Products" page.

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Copyright 1999 by Sharol Tilgner, N.D. (ISBN 1-881517-02-0) - all rights reserved.

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