Helichrysum

Latin: Helichrysum (Gnaphalium) angustifolium , italicum

Family:  Asteraceae

Parts Used:  Flower heads

Taste/Energetics:  Pungent, bitter, aromatic, warming, drying

Properties:  Anti-spasmodic, diuretic, anxiolytic, carminative, antiinflammatory, antiviral, antimicrobial, circulatory stimulant, anticoagulant.

Actions:  This is an herb that is not commonly used in the West unless as an aromatherapeutic agent (essential oil/hydrosol).  Traditionally it has been used to promote circulation and relieve stagnation and pain associated with arthtrtitis and rheumatism.  It has a nice calming and anti-inflammatory effect on digestive upset, spasms and ulcers.  Helichrysum can be a helpful aid against colds and flu and improve immune response to bronchitis and lung ailments.  Its antispasmodic effect is useful for hacking coughs and asthma.  Externally it can be applied as a poultice to heal wounds, eczema, scars and abcesses.

In terms of aromatherapy, it is best offered for those who have experienced emotional trauma and in a state of heightened anxiety, fear and grief.

is primarily used today in aromatherapy as an essential oil and hydrosol.  Known traditionally as “immortelle” and “Everlasting” it carries a solar richness that is useful for those who feel hidden, dark and fearful.  It brings light and warmth.  There is also something that connects it to other Gnaphaliums such as Pearly Everlasting.  These plants seem to have an affinity with matters of death and dying, with ancestral issues such as repeated family themes of abuse and trauma that carry down through the generations.

Dosage:  Standard essential oil usage.  In teas, 1-2 tsp to cup of hot water for 10 mins. in standard infusion.  1-2 ml to 3 x/day.

Contraindications:  For those on blood thinners, or prone to internal hemorrhages.