“He/she loves me, he/she loves me not …” many of us have picked at least one daisy. This flower is also known as lawn daisy, common daisy or English daisy. But no matter how small this flower is – daisy benefits are amazing.
This lovely little flower grows everywhere and now is its season. Its value as a medicinal plant has largely been overlooked and most modern herbalists do not use it. But daisy benefits were highly valued by our ancestors.
Lately, as awareness of the advantages of wild food foraging and sustainable living increases, it is having somewhat of a renaissance. Its fresh green leaves along with other wild foods such as sorrel and dandelion leaves can be eaten in salads. Once they were popular cooked as a vegetable and served with meat. Daisy flowers can also be eaten in stews, soups, even sandwiches and make great decorative additions to almost any dish. Their flavor is mild, slightly sour.
If we look for daisy benefits then it is worth looking into its pharmacological constituents. It contains flavonoids (3 flavonoid aglycones, apigenin, quercetin, kaempferol, and 2 flavone glycosides of apigenin), triterpenoic saponins, acetic, malic, and oxalic acid, mucilage, wax, resins, inulin, tannins and essential oils (1). A glycosidase inhibitor found in the leaves may have an antiviral action against HIV.
The daisy also has high nutritional value; in 100g of edible parts of the plant, there is 600mg potassium, 190mg calcium, 160mg vitamin A, 88mg phosphorus, 33mg magnesium, 2.7mg iron, and 2.6mg protein (2).
The whole plant has antiarthritic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, antitussive, anodyne, astringent, demulcent, diaphoretic, digestive, diuretic, emollient, expectorant, febrifuge, hepatic, laxative, ophthalmic, tonic, and vulnerary properties.
Daisy benefits have important applications for treating various conditions of the joints, skin, lungs, stomach and skin as well as in the prevention of cancer, and cardiovascular diseases.
Daisy benefits joints, lungs, and stomach
Tea from this plant is used in the treatment of chest pain, and bronchitis, stomach and bowel inflammation, as well as kidney and liver diseases.
It also helps with irregular menstruation, spasms, and pain, rheumatism, arthritis, and gout.
For treatment of internal bleeding, the best is a combination with walnut leaves.
Daisy ointment is a good remedy for inflamed joints and wounds. The tincture relieves muscle fatigue and rheumatism.
Daisy benefits skin
Daisy purifies and beautifies the skin due to its high content of flavonoids, saponins, polyphenols, inulin and polysaccharides.
Because of these amazing active ingredients, daisy is often used in cosmetics, especially in those for skin whitening, hyperpigmentation, and freckles.
This plant evens out skin color caused by pigmentation disorders by restraining the melanin formation. It also regenerates skin cells and hydrates the skin.
Externally it can be used for bruises, wounds, strains, sprains, fungal or bacterial skin problems, painful congested breasts, inflammatory eye problems, gout and arthritic joints, and applied to the perineum for pain and bruising after childbirth. You can chew the fresh leaves to relieve mouth ulcers or even make an insect repellent spray from a leaf infusion.
Daisy flowers for cancer treatment and cardiovascular disease
Many edible plants contain the flavonoid kaempferol (e.g. beans, broccoli, cabbage, endive, grapes, kale, leek, tea, tomato, and strawberries) and herbs (including Equisetum spp, Ginkgo biloba, Moringa oleifera, Tilia spp, and propolis). It has antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antimutagenic, antidiabetic, anti-osteoporotic, anxiolytic, antiallergenic, hormone regulating, cardioprotective, neuroprotective, and analgesic properties.
Studies show that eating foods containing kaempferol can reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and cancer (particularly lung and pancreatic cancer). (3)
Quercetin is a pigment found in many foods (apples, berries, red grapes, onions, broccoli, tea, green tea, and red wine). It has antiviral, antioxidant, antimutagenic, and hypotensive properties. It may help in allergies and inhibit prostate cancer, helps reduce cardiovascular problems, and strengthens blood vessel walls (4)
While the essential oils are antimicrobial against gram- and gram+ bacteria, the triterpenoid glycosides have antifungal activity and they are very effective against Cryptococcus spp and Candida. (5), (6)
The whole plant can be used as medicine as a decoction, infusion, tincture, ointment, compress or poultice.
Healing properties of daisy juice
As it removes toxins from the body daisy is perfect for spring body detoxification. It’s also a great remedy for problems with skin inflammation, burns, wounds, varicose veins, edema, breast cancer and HIV.
- Every day, drink one to three full tablespoons of freshly prepared juice mixed with a half quantity of water.
- The juice mixed with honey is a home remedy for respiratory diseases.
- In a cup of boiled water add 1 – 2 tablespoons of dried daisy flowers. Leave it for 10 – 15 minutes, then strain the tea.
- Soak 2 – 3 handfuls of daisies in one liter of alcohol and leave it for three weeks. Occasionally shake the tincture. Filter the mixture after three weeks and keep it in a dark place.
Skin care tonic
- In a cup of boiling water add a teaspoon of dried daisy flowers and leave it for 30 minutes.
- Mash daisy leaves and then add half of the amount mallow leaves.
- Fry this mixture in clarified butter (ghee).
- Strain it while it is still hot directly into a glass jar.
- Rub the mixture on sore joints 2 – 3 times a day.
There are no side effects known, although it should be avoided during pregnancy until further research is available. Individuals who are sensitive to other members of the Asteraceae family may experience respiratory allergies.