Meadowsweet or spiraea ulmaria, scientific name Filipendula ulmaria, belongs to the Rosaceae family. Although it is different, from the esthetic point of view, from the rose, it is very close relative, because both have in common a very intense smell. Known and also used by King Alboin to treat gout, we now know that the meadowsweet has important and demonstrated diuretic properties that make it a remedy to treat edema of the legs, joint effusion, gout, rheumatism, kidney colic and stones of the genito-urinary tract. The meadowsweet helps with cellulite and can purify the body from toxins. In addition to the diuretic effect of the meadowsweet, this plant is characterized by a tonic action, sudorific, antipyretic and anti-inflammatory properties, that can be helpful in case of diseases and flu. In fact, the plant contains salicylates, salicylic acid-derived substances. In order to better understand, a kind of salicylic acid-derived substances is the acetylsalicylic acid, which, chemically produced, is used for the preparation of aspirin and this drug takes its name from the plant meadowsweet. However, despite having an action similar to this medicine, meadowsweet doesn’t have the same collateral effects on the gastric mucosa. Meadowsweet can also heal wounds, ulcers and cuts. At the reported doses there aren’t toxic effects. Avoid during pregnancy and breastfeeding, in young children, if you have an allergy to aspirin or if you are taking NSAIDs, anticoagulants, antidiabetic and sedatives to avoid interactions.
Do not use boiling water because the heat cam destroy the active substances of the plant, such as salicylic acid. For this reason, heat a liter of water until you get 80°, remove from heat and put to infuse a handful of fresh or dried flowers for ten minutes. Filter and drink up to three cups a day.
Decoction for external use
Prepare a decoction by boiling two handfuls of flowers in a liter of water, let it simmer for a few minutes, then filter and once lukewarm use for wraps.
You can take the mother tincture of meadowsweet, 40 drops three times a day along with a glass of water.