( Calendula Officinalis )
Calendula is a holistic favorite. It has been a constant pharmaceutical addition for decades. Called the ‘Healing Herb’. Calendula is easily accessible. This simple yet enchanting, bright orange or yellow flower is potent, yet gentle enough for babies, children and animals.
Native to the southern region of Europe, parts of Asia it’s now cultivated worldwide, this annual herb is similar to the daisy in structure; it grows about two feet tall.
Commonly known as Marigold, ( Mary’s gold ) or Pot Gold, named Calendula by the Romans. It was widely embraced for its therapeutic qualities and considered a symbol of joy, planted to spread happiness. Calendula is reputed by the Romans to bloom the first days of each month, and mark the beginning of the new moon cycle. Some cultures use it ceremonially as a symbol of endurance.
Calendula, commonly known as Egyptian saffron or the “poor mans saffron”was also recognized and valued by Ancient Egyptians as a rejuvenating herb.
It has long been a culinary love of the Greeks, Persians and Germans for:
This simple, yet complex flower is also a celebrated herbal jewel. Historical accounts note that it was embraced as a healing herb. A 12th century publication mentions it for improving eyesight. Additionally, during the 17th century,
Culpepper and Gerard refer to this herb as a;
“Comforter of the heart and spirits either fresh or dried, as being
much used in possets, broth, and drink as a comforter of the heart
and spirits, and to expel any malignant or pestilential quality which
might annoy them. Ellingwood recommends it for varicose veins,
chronic ulcers, capillary engorgement, hepatic and splenic congestion,
recent wounds and open sores, and severe burns.”¹
Calendula is commonly applied to the skin. Research shows that it is high in antioxidants that protect cells from free radical damage. For centuries, it was used to soothe skin irritations and assist faster wound healing, burns, cuts and bruises. It is also thought to assist with stretch marks and fight off minor skin infections. Some patients as indicated by Penn State Hershey Medical Center, have also noted that it helped prevent skin inflammation during radiation therapy.
Its’ primary properties include:
stimulates collagen production at wound sites helps minimize scarring
University of Maryland Medical Center shares; that in the treatment of Eczema, “Herbs are generally a safe way to strengthen and tone the body’s systems.” Among those found to be helpful is Calendula. They note that Calendula; “may help relieve itching and burning, and promote healing.”
Calendula is also thought to be helpful with bee stings, chapped skin, diaper rash, cradle cap and much more. Calendula is still unveiling its secret powers.
Fronza M, Heinzmann B, Hamburger M, Laufer S, Merfort I. Determination of the wound healing effect of Calendula extracts using the scratch assay with 3T3 fibroblasts. J Ethnopharmacol. 2009 Dec 10;126(3):463-7.
Panahi Y, Sharif MR, Sharif A, et al. A randomized comparative trial on the therapeutic efficacy of topical aloe vera and Calendula officinalis on diaper dermatitis in children. Scientific World Journal. 2012;2012:810234.