|Botanical Nomenclature||Carthamus tinctorius|
|Taxonomy- Family||Compositae or Asteraceae|
|Distinguishing Features of the Plant||Carthamus tinctorius is an annual plant growing from 0,5 to 1,5m, with spiny leaves and yellow, orange or red flowers. The flowering lasts from August to October and the fruiting takes place from September to October. In winter, when the leaves get dry, the plant looks wonderful.|
|Part of the Plant with Active Substances||Flowers, seeds|
|Active Substances||Safflower (flavonoid, derivative of copper with coloring properties), flavonoids (quercetin, rutin, kaempherol), glycosides, fat, choline, essential oil (which contains linoleic acid, palmitic acid, oleic acid and other fatty acids), lignans, polysaccharides, carthamone, vitamins E and K.|
|Pharmacological Effects - Therapeutic Applications||The whole plant has sedative, analgesic, healing and cleansing properties. Several studies have shown that the plant may be used to regulate cholesterol and blood sugar levels, due to the contained active substances. The herbal oil is used as dietary supplement in order to lose weight, to nourish and care the skin and the hair, as well against the premenstrual syndrome. In folk medicine it is administered in the form of herbal tea for the treatment of constipation, even during pregnancy. The commonest use of the plant is in cooking as dye, replacing the saffron.|
|Method of Administration||Nowadays the plant is mainly used to care and nourish the skin and the hair in the form of oil (safflower oil), as well as ingredient in cosmetics.
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||1) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24212075 2)http://www.chineseherbshealing.com/carthamus-tinctorius/ 3)http://www.iama.gr/ethno/ypertasi_files/Ypertasi_Kandyli.pdf 4)http://www.iama.gr/ethno/crocus/trntls.html 5)http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Carthamus+tinctorius|