Wood Betony

Latin:  Stachys betonica

Family:  Lamiaceae

Parts Used: Aerial parts

Taste/Energetics:  Warming, drying, bitter

Properties:  Anxiolytic (and somewhat stimulating too), tonic, carminative, stomachic,  antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory. anti-depressant, vulnerary

Actions:  Betony has long been known be useful for reducing headaches/migraines and is useful for those folks who tend to worry and overthink and analyze things excessively.  They suffer both in the head and in the gut and are afflicted by nervous tension and anxiety.  Betony also helps with digestive complaints associated with over worry and pensiveness that stall digestion.  The tummy feels stuck and obstructed without a lot of movement.   Betony also helps those who get nervous tics and spasms that tend to move around a bit.  In Chinese medicine they would call this “wind”.  I also tend to think of this plant for those who worry to the point of obsession, becoming stuck on mental patterns that are often disturbing.  In that way it could be useful for those with PTSD with disturbing circular thoughts.

Dosage:  1-2 teaspoons infused in hot water 10 mins, 1-2 ml tincture to 3 x/day

Contraindications:  None

Further Reading:

Wood Betony monograph  by Jim McDonald