In Ancient Greece, viola or sweet violet was known as a symbol of spring, eternal life, and love. Many myths are associated with this plant due to its numerous health benefits.
Sweet violet (Viola odorata) is a medicinal and nutritional powerhouse. This heavenly-scented plant blooms in March and April – in early spring. It is native to North Africa, western Asia, and Europe, and it can be easily naturalized and cultivated.
Luckily, all species of violets have similar medicinal value and are edible, so you don’t have to worry about knowing out which one you’ve got.
Its flowers and leaves are rich in vitamins and minerals, especially C and A. The leaves are tasty both raw and cooked, with a mild mucilaginous flavor.
The flowers are tangy and sweet, and make a gorgeous garnish on desserts and salads.
How does it work?
Sweet Violet contains the following compounds – salicylic acid, saponins, glycoside iridin, trans-alpha-ionone, methyl ester, beta-nitropropionic acid, curcumene, dihydro-beta-ionone, zingiberene, essential oils, bitter constituents, and alkaloids. The following medicinal actions are associated with this herb – expectorant, emetine, anti-inflammatory, laxative, anti-microbial, vasodilator, and broncho-secretolytic.
The flowers and leafs have been used for thousands of years, both internally and externally, as an anti-inflammatory, antifungal, and antiseptic agent.
Healing properties of sweet violet
The Ancient Greeks wore crowns of violets to relieve headaches, cure insomnia, promote sleep and serenity, and stimulate pleasant dreams.
Sweet Violets are very efficient in the treatment of:
- abdominal pain,
- digestion problems caused by improper diet, gas, heartburn,
- fibrocystic breast disease,
- gallbladder disorders,
- nervous complaints
- treats respiratory diseases,
- urinary tract infection
- loss of appetite
- lymphatic congestion,
- physical and mental exhaustion,
- swelling (inflammation) of the stomach and intestines
- symptoms of menopause (hot flashes),
- varicose veins.
Sweet Violet successfully solves the following respiratory problems – asthma, bronchial catarrh, dry catarrh, chest congestion, inflammation of the oral mucosa, whooping cough, cough, sore throat, and stuffy nose.
With the flowers of the herb you can make an herbal tea for treating bronchial catarrh.
You may also find some interesting tips here Asthma – Natural Remedies and Treatment
The whole plant also relieves gastrointestinal difficulties, works as a laxative, promotes urination, sweating, and healthy stool.
Violet leaves can even help to shrink cancers and tumors. A cyclotide from Viola odorata – Cycloviolacin O2 has antitumor effects and causes cell death. (1)
They are most effective when used both externally as a poultice and taken internally. They are also helpful in clearing up other lumps and growths such as fibrocystic breasts, cysts, and mastitis.
The herb can be used for solving the following conditions – anger, hysteria, depression, mental exhaustion, irritability, insomnia, headache, tiredness, and some of the symptoms of menopause. (2)
As a natural emollient – it has the quality of soothing or softening the skin. It helps moisten your skin and topically it is very helpful in the treatment of minor skin irritations, eczema, psoriasis, infants’ cradle cap, diaper rash, acne, chapped lips, or cold sores.
Violet also works as a blood purifier, which makes it a gentle and great detoxifying plant for the spring season. It helps the body restore optimal functioning by helping metabolic processes, especially the elimination of waste products. (3)
You can even apply it directly to the skin as a skin cleanser and for skin disorders.
Supports Immune System
Violet also supports the immune system, and it helps in clearing infections of all kinds. Cooling and soothing, it helps reduce inflammation and fever.
Homeopathic Uses of Sweet Violet
For homeopathic remedy is used the whole fresh plant. It is useful in the treatment of spasmodic coughs and rheumatism. An essential oil from the flowers is also used in aromatherapy where they are used in the treatment of exhaustion, skin disorders, and bronchial complaints.
Sweet Violet Usage
Sweet Violet & Honey
This combination is wonderful for soothing scratchy throats and coughs, boosting your immune system, relieving colds and flu, as well as treating various infections.
Take two cups of fresh violet flowers. Mix them well with freshly squeezed juice of one lemon and one cup raw unfiltered honey. Store the mixture in a glass jar and keep it in the freezer.
Take one teaspoon of this mixture two times a day.
Sweet Violet & Vinegar
This works as an excellent natural remedy for alleviating muscle and joint pain.
In one glass jar place as many violet flowers as possible. Cover them with white vinegar, and leave flowers to steep for 2-3 weeks. Close the jar and shake it well every day. Then strain and keep the solution in your fridge.
Soak a cotton pad or cloth in the violet and vinegar solution and compress it against the affected area.
Sweet Violet Tea
Besides that this tea is perfect remedy headache, insomnia, stress, fatigue and hysteria it is also very effective for treatment of asthma symptoms.
For a refreshing violet tea you need the whole plant – the leaves, flowers, and roots of the herb.
Ingredients (for one cup):
2,5 dl water
2 tsp dried violet flowers, leaves, and roots
1 tbsp honey
Place the dried violets in the pan and add 2,5 dl cold water.
After the water is boiled leave it to steep for about 5 – 10 minutes and then strain. Take one cup of Violet tea three times a day.
Sweet Violet Oil
For migraines and headaches, massage the violet oil onto your temples.
If you want to make your own violet flower oil, take half a liter of olive oil and a handful of fresh violet flowers.
First, mix the olive oil and fresh violet flowers in a glass jar and leave it for 5 days.
Then strain it and store it in a dark tinted glass bottle.
Violet Syrup for All Respiratory Conditions
3 l honey
1,2 l distilled water
36 g dried violet leaf
Place the dried violet leafs in a glass or stainless steel pan and add 1,2 liters water. Let it sit overnight.
In the morning, simmer it on the stove for 15 minutes, then strain.
Measure the liquid, and then in the liquid add 3 times the amount of honey.
Again heat the mixture gently and mix it well until the honey dissolves. Keep this mixture in sterilized jars in a dark and cool place.
Take one teaspoon of this syrup per day.
Use it within a year.