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Lobelia - Uses and Benefits

Alternative Names:

Indian tobacco , Trailing lobelia , lobelia, bladderpod, emetic herb, emetic weed, gagroot, vomitroot, vomitwort, pukeweed, wild tobacco, asthma weed, bladderpod, eyebright

Herb Description

The herb Lobelia is named after the botanist Matthias de Lobel, a native of Lille, who died in London in 1616.This plant, commonly known as Wild, or Indian tobacco, is an annual or biennial indigenous plant, more commonly the latter, with a fibrous, yellowish-white root, and an erect, angular, very hairy stem. It is an erect annual or biennial herb, 1 to 2 feet high; lower leaves and also flower are stalked, the latter being pale violet-blue in colour, tinted pale yellow within. Commercially, it is usually prepared in compressed, oblong packages, by the Shakers of New Lebanon for importation into England. yellowish green color, the odor irritating, the taste, after chewing, very like that of tobacco, burning and acrid, causing a flow of saliva. The powder has a greenish color, but that of the seeds is brown, and stains paper with grease. Lobelia was introduced more than 200 years ago from the region around the Cape of Good Hope. The original wild forms of lobelia have been bred to bloom more profusely. The flowers are small, numerous, pale-blue, on short peduncles, each originating from the axil of a small leaf.

Lobelia ( Lobelia inflata ), has a long history of use as an herbal remedy for respiratory ailments such as asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia, and cough. Native Americans historically smoked lobelia as a treatment for asthma. In the 19th century, American physicians prescribed wild tobacco to induce vomiting in order remove toxins from the body. Because of this, it earned the name "puke weed." Today, lobelia is considered an effective expectorant, meaning that it helps clear mucus from the respiratory tract . Lobelia is a poisonous plant with a milky juice. Its stem, which has but few branches, is smooth above while the lower part is rough and hairy.

uses and benefits

Lobelia for the treatment of the following respiratory tract disorders or symptoms:

  • Asthma
  • Bronchitis
  • Cough

Lobelia was frequently used by midwives as a sedative, for its muscle relaxing effects, in preparation for childbirth. Today, Lobelia is commonly used as an effective blood cleanser, and also to treat a variety of respiratory problems .It works as a muscle relaxants, Lobelia is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, and manganese .expelling phlegm from the lungs, and relieving congestion that is typically related to asthma and bronchitis . Lobelia also reduce cold , flu , coughing, and stimulate perspiration, cooling down the body to help break fevers. Lobelia is helpful for treating mild depression , reducing inflammation & pain , easing muscle tension, and calming the nerves . It also works as a mild laxative for alleviating constipation . Lobelia is often used as a tobacco substitute to help those who wish to quit smoking .

Lobelia has been used medicinally as

  • expectorant
  • emetic
  • anti-asthmatic
  • stimulant
  • antispasmodic
  • diaphoretic
  • relaxing agent
  • diuretic
  • nervine

Lobelia is a pure relaxant, possessing only the faintest moiety of stimulating property, and this of a transient character, expending itself upon the fauces, and the glands and mucous membrane of the mouth and respiratory organs.

side effects

Its considered a potentially toxic herb & Special care is advised when using lobelia.Its not recommended for Pregnant and breastfeeding women.In excessive doses the effects are those of a powerful acro-narcotic poison, producing great depression, nausea, cold-sweats, and possibly death. Also cause serious symptoms such as profuse sweating,vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, rapid heartbeat, mental confusion, convulsions, hypothermia, coma .

People should not take lobelia in case following problems of:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Tobacco sensitivity
  • Paralysis
  • Seizure disorder
  • Shortness of breath
  • Those recovering from shock

Short-term side effects that have been reported in association with lobelia include stomach pain, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, and dizziness. Lobeline also appears to trigger coughing and a sense of choking, for reasons that are unclear.

dosage

  • Liquid extract:

1:1 in 50% alcohol, 0.2 - 0.6 ml , use three times daily.

  • Dried herb :

¼ - ½ tablespoon herb in 8 oz of water steep 30 - 40 minutes ,use three times daily.

  • Tincture :

0.6 - 2.0 ml ,use three times daily.

drug interactions

There is no well documented interaction with Lobelia.

Elecampane

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Lobelia

Lobelia

Lomatium

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