|Botanical Nomenclature||Portulaca oleracea|
|Common Name||Little Hogweed, Pigweed, Purslane, Pursley, Red Root, Verdolaga|
|Distinguishing Features of the Plant||Portulaca oleracea is an annual plant growing up to 30cm, with red, fleshy stems, shiny, clavate, fleshy leaves and small, yellow flowers. The flowering lasts from July to September.|
|Part of the Plant with Active Substances||Aboveground plant parts|
|Active Substances||Omega-3 fatty acids (mainly a-linoleic, palmitic and oleic acid), vitamins E, C, D, O, beta-carotene, alkaloids (cyanines, xanthines), glutathione, iron, calcium, saponines, tannins|
|Pharmacological Effects - Therapeutic Applications||The whole plant has diuretic, tonic, sedative and helminthic properties and it is administered in the form of herbal tea against gallstones, nephrolithiasis, colitis and amoeboid dysentery. Also, due to its high content in omega-3 fatty acids, the herb has a special nutritional and antioxidant value and it is used to prevent diseases, such as inflammation, cardiac and respiratory problems, stomach disorders, pain, fever, headaches, intestinal disorders, cough and dyspnea. In folk medicine it is applied externally to the skin in the form of poultice (external washes), as it has healing properties and it is used against various skin problems.|
|Method of Administration||The plant is administered as a sedative in the form of herbal tea (a quantity of dried seeds are boiled in a cup of milk - one cup of the warm tea before sleeping) and as diuretic and antihelminthic in the form of aqueous or alcoholic solution of the pulverized, dried grains (5-30g daily). Also, it can be consumed as fresh plant (salad), due to its high nutritional value. Finally, in folk medicine it is applied externally to the skin in the form of poultice made from the fresh plant.
Warning: The use of herb preparations is not recommended without seeking advice from your physician or pharmacist. The substances they contain may interact with the subscribed drugs that the patient already takes, thus eliminating their therapeutic efficacy or inducing toxicity. They may also burden further weakened vital functions of the body thus exposing the patient to increased morbidity and life threatened conditions.
|Toxicity- Adverse Effects||No side effects have been reported.|
|References||) Bιβλίο: Τα φαρμακευτικά βότανα και οι θεραπευτικές τους ιδιότητες, Λάμπρου Π. Σπύρου, Αγροτικός εκδοτικός οίκος, Αθήνα 1981, Α' τόμος, σελίδες: 99-100 2)http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/purslane.html 3)http://www.ansci.cornell.edu/plants/medicinal/portula.html 4)http://www.herballegacy.com/Griffiths_Chemical.html 5)http://www.drugs.com/npp/purslane.html|