A small, thickly branched herb, skullcap [Scutellaria lateriflora], has been used as medicine for a long time.
The herb derives its name from the cap-like appearance of its outer swirl of small blue flowers.
This wonderful herb has many medicinal uses and has a long history of use.
Medicinal Uses for Skullcap
Scutellaria lateriflora is one of the major species of skullcap used in herbal preparations.
The parts of the skullcap plant used for medicinal purposes are the leaves.
Most of the medicinal properties and effects of Scutellaria lateriflora are based on traditional and clinical observations, which also include subjective records of patients.
Here are some indications for its use:
- Help with joint aches.
- Help for muscle spasms.
- Relief from Anxiety, nervous tension states.
- Reduce pain from tension headaches.
- Help for anorexia nervosa [diminished appetite].
- Fibromyalgia relief.
- Reduce restless leg syndrome.
- Natural Sleep Aid.
- Help for mild Tourette’s syndrome [multiple motor and vocal tics].
- Reduce Epilepsy [fits].
The image shown is from the cover of Time Magazine with a report linking inflammation to some of the most common diseases we are facing today.
Chinese skullcap [Scuterllaria baicalensis], a closely-related herb, has anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative, and anti-histamine properties.
It also has an impressive record in the treatment of arthritis, and allergies, such as hay fever, or allergic rhinitis.
In one study, Chinese skullcap was shown to inhibit cancer cells. Some studies report that skullcap has broad-spectrum anti-cancer activity.
The types of cancer studied were some of the most common human cancers. Researchers, therefore, suggest that Chinese skullcap holds promise as a therapeutic agent, in the treatment of both inflammation and cancer complexes. Cancer, it must be remembered, is an inflammatory disease.
Research Studies of Chinese Skullcap Herb
In traditional Chinese medicine, skullcap is used to treat tumors. Some laboratory studies have shown evidence of early promise of this herb in the treatment of bladder, liver, and other types of cancers.
In clinical studies on human subjects, skullcap forms one of the eight herbs that make up PC-SPES, an alternative treatment for prostate cancer.
Laboratory results have accessed a constituent present in skullcap, which is reported to be useful in the treatment of hepatitis-B.
Reports also suggest that skullcap may prove to be a useful remedy in the prevention of heart disease, thanks to its anti-oxidant properties. Some researchers also suggest that skullcap could limit organic damage following a heart attack.
Adult Dosage of Skullcap
Dried herb: 1 to 2 grams per day.
Skullcap Tea: Pour 1 cup boiling water over 1 teaspoon of dried skullcap herb, then soak for half-an-hour. Recommended dosage is two or three cups per day.
Fluid Extract (1:1 in 25 per cent alcohol): 2 to 4 ml (40 to 120 drops), three times daily.
SkullCap Tincture (1:5 in 45 per cent alcohol): 2 to 5 ml (40 to 150 drops), three times daily.
Capsule or tablet form, take 500 mg, twice daily, as food supplement.
Skullcap Dosage for Children
Skullcap is generally not used for children, but it may be used to bring about a calming change in anxious, tense children.
The best way to administer skullcap to children is in the form of a mild tea. You can make the tea with either dried herbs, fluid extract, or from a tincture. Keep in mind the ratio concentration to ensure the tea is mild. You can sweeten with honey. The tea is also yummy and relaxing for adults as well.
Precautions For Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women
Skullcap should be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Researchers also suggest that skullcap should be used with caution in patients who are using anti-anxiety medications [benzodiazepine], or medications such as diazepam and alprazolam, and barbiturates for sleep disorders or seizures, such as pentobarbital and, anti-histamine medications for allergic conditions.
Best Organic SkullCap Bulk Herb or Tincture
When purchasing Skullcap, you can save a lot of money by buying organic wildcrafted herbs for use in teas. You can also purchase capsules and cap them up yourself.
Click to > Purchase Organic Skullcap WildCrafted Herb
Another convenient option is to purchase this natural anti-inflammatory herb as an organic tincture.
Click for > Skullcap Tincture
You can also purchase find scullcap in capsules too, however the quality may not be as good as the organic tinture and wildcrafted herbs.