Yarrow - Achillea millefolium

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This Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) monograph is an excerpt from the 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.

Yarrow - Achillea millefolium in the Asteraceae or Aster family

Part used: Flowers, leaves.

Taste/smell: Bitter, aromatic, pungent.

Tendencies: Cooling, drying.

Dosage: Infusion: 1 teaspoon per cup of water; or 1:1 fresh strength liquid extract: 10-30 drops 1-4 times per day.

Mental picture and specifics: The individual has vertigo when moving slowly and feels as if something is forgotten. The head seems full of blood. Yarrow is specific for the urinary system and exerts a tonic influence on the venous system and mucous membranes. It is best for atonic and relaxed tissues where there is free discharge or massive bleeding of bright red blood, or diarrhea.

Use: (a) Bitter tonic, (b) Antiseptic, (c) Antifungal, (d) Astringent, (e) Styptic, (f) Stimulating diaphoretic, (g) Anti-inflammatory, (h) Anodyne.

A hot infusion of Yarrow Achillea millefolium produces a stimulating diaphoretic effect and a cold infusion produces a diuretic effect or tones gastric organs. Some of the ability to relieve pain may be due to its prostaglandin-inhibiting action. It is used in the initial stages of colds or fevers, bleeding hemorrhoids, excessive menstrual flow with uterine atony or uterine spasms and vaginitis with vaginal atony. Yarrow contains achilletin and achilleine (hemostatics), B-iso-thujone, coumarin, chamazulene, apigenin and steroidal B-sitosterol.

Contraindications: The constituent of Yarrow called B-thujone, can cause vomiting, stomach and intestinal cramps, retention of urine, and in serious cases, renal damage, vertigo, tremors, and convulsions. Beta-thujone has been shown to be a neurotoxin in animals, but has not been studied in humans. It may lend some toxicity to the plant, especially in larger doses or chronic use. Short term use of herbs containing thujone is generally considered to be safe. 887 Thujone is considered a GABA receptor antagonist. B-thujone is alcohol soluble, so tea extracts contain less of it. Allergic contact dermatitis can occur with external use of yarrow in sensitive individuals. Discontinue if a rash occurs. It is contraindicated in pregnancy due to the emmenagogue and abortifacient effects. 404

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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