Medicinal plants

Plantain – Application & Treatment for Health


The plantain is a very old medicinal plant that was already known to the Assyrians. In ancient Greece and the Middle Ages, folk medicine used the inconspicuous plant that grew along the way and between paving stones to treat rheumatic diseases. As reported by the Roman author Pliny the Elder (1st century AD), plantain even helped with scorpion stings and animal bites.

Occurrence and cultivation of plantain

Broad plantain ( Plantago major ) belongs to the plantain family ( Plantaginaceae ). It is also popularly referred to as large plantain , broad-leaved plantain and field herb . The versatile plant is related to the buckhorn and has a similar spectrum of effects as this. The herbaceous medicinal plant grows to about 25 cm. Its ovate to oval, about 15 cm long, entire leaves grow from a basal rosette.

A green spike-like inflorescence atop the long leafless stem blooms from June to October. The delicate leaves are best collected and dried before flowering in May. The undemanding and tread-resistant medicinal plant is native to Europe and today grows almost everywhere: directly on paths, along roadsides, on lawns, fields and even on the roadside. Broad plantain can be found anywhere in the world today where it encounters nutrient-rich, moist and hard soil.

Effect & Application

It is used internally and externally and has a very broad spectrum of activity, which even surpasses that of plantain by a few areas of application. The user consumes the freshly picked younger leaves in a wild herb salad. Plant juice is obtained from them by pressing. To prepare plantain tincture, the patient places some fresh leaves in a screw-top jar and fills it with double grain so that it is completely covered.

Then he closes the jar and lets the contents steep for 2 to 6 weeks. He then strains the tincture with a coffee filter and fills it into dark bottles. If only a little juice is needed, the user can also squeeze the fresh leaf with his fingers until juice runs out and then treat the affected part of the body with it. The juice is also used to make poultices that relieve pain and reduce swelling. The plantain juice is also used internally to treat coughs and bronchial catarrh.

The tea is drunk or used for medicinal baths and ablutions. Plantain leaves are also processed into ointments and lotions that are applied to the affected area of ​​the body. The root of the inconspicuous plant is chewed in the mouth so that its antibacterial and antiviral ingredients effectively combat inflammation in the mouth and throat .

For the tea, the patient pours 1 to 2 teaspoons of fresh leaves or 0.5 to 1 teaspoon of dried herb to 1 liter of boiling water. 5 to 10 minutes later he strains the tea and drinks 2 to 3 cups in small sips throughout the day. Even the crushed leaves of the plant are used as a remedy: the user picks some leaves, crushes them with a stone, and places them on cuts , skin scratches, and acne pimples.

Placed in shoes, they help hikers with blisters on their feet and foot pain . The oozing juice heals the wounds and cools them at the same time. Plantain is well tolerated in all applications. Occasionally, however, allergic rhinitis can occur. Interactions with other agents are not known.

Importance for health, treatment & prevention

All parts of the plantain (leaves, roots, seeds) are suitable for medicinal applications. In contrast to the buckhorn , which is only used dried, the broadleaf plantain is usually used fresh. The old medicinal plant contains allantoin, iridoid glycosides such as aucubin and catalpol, bitter substances, tannic acid, tannins, mucilage, salicylic acid, polyphenols, sulfur, mineral salts, silicic acid and vitamin C. Aucubin and Catalpol have an anti-bacterial effect, helping to treat infections in the body.

The substances also prevent inflammation , reduce fever and strengthen the patient’s immune system. The plantain is therefore used as a natural broad-spectrum antibiotic against various diseases ( sore throat , gastritis , stomach and intestinal ulcers , colds , bronchitis , whooping cough , asthma ).

In the case of a bladder infection and lung infection, 10 ml of plantain juice is sufficient to quickly bring about an improvement in the general condition. The tannins contained in the medicinal plant have an astringent effect and ensure rapid wound healing when the agent is applied to an open wound. The plant mucilage relieves the urge to cough in the case of influenza infections .

The versatile medicinal plant is also used for indigestion and drainage: it has a positive effect on an irritated intestine and constipation. Diarrhea is efficiently treated with the help of the plant’s own tannins (tannins). With certain complaints (colic, asthma and abdominal pain), the natural remedy relieves cramps and relaxes the muscles. Because of its anti-microbial properties, it kills intestinal parasites.

Toothache , facial neuralgia , colic and other painful conditions are eliminated. The plant also helps to draw dangerous toxins out of the body and thus cleanses from the inside. Even burns , sunburn , purulent ulcers , fistulas , hemorrhoids and warts on the skin are treated quickly and efficiently with plantain ointments.

The homeopathic Plantago major even helps with smoking cessation. It provokes an aversion to nicotine in the patient, so the smoker is forced to quit smoking. Homeopaths also use the remedy against an irritated bladder, insomnia and mood swings .

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Hello! I am Lisa Newlon, and I am a medical writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry. I have a Master’s degree in Medicine, and my deep understanding of medical terminology, practices, and procedures has made me a trusted source of information in the medical world.