The benefits of red clover are abundant. This herb is high in fiber, antioxidants and protein. It is a rich source of vitamin A, B, B2, B3, C and E. As well as minerals such as silica, potassium, lecithin, calcium, niacin, phosphorus, thiamine, chromium, and magnesium. Since it is a fodder crop, you can commonly find it in agricultural fields. It is also possible to grow red clover at home.
Make sure to use this herb without pesticides for medicinal purposes. It can be used in a tea form, both in bags or by using the flower heads to help with menopausal symptoms, cough or for nutritive purposes. Capsules are a way of getting the benefits of red clover into the whole body. Tintures are another way of obtaining a more concentrated product that reaches the body quicker. Finally, a poultice can be done to treat skin problems.
Do not use this herb if you have liver problems, use birth control pills or are on a blood thinner medication.
Red Clover as a Fertility Herb
One of the most popular fertility herbs is red clover. Even women who have no fertility issues should take advantage of the benefits of red clover while preparing for their pregnancy. This herb is great at purifying the blood which aids in detoxification prior to conception. While improving circulation and sending more blood to the genitals for reproductive function. As well as increasing the cervical mucus and removing vaginal dryness.
Red clover is one of the best pregnancy preparation tonics. Use it 3-6 months before pregnancy. Place the dried red clover blossoms in boiling water and let them steep covered for 3-4 hours. Strain the flowers and drink 1-3 cups per day. It can be mixed with other nourishing herbs such as nettle and red raspberry leaf. Other recipes include peppermint, lavender flowers and lemon slices.
Red Clover Use in Pregnancy and Lactation
I first came across all the benefits of red clover when searching for helpful herbs for labor and birth. This is one of those herbs with a lot of contradictory opinions. Some websites say not to use it during pregnancy or breastfeeding because of its isoflavones and phytoestrogens that produce estrogen like effects on the body. This may cause hormone levels to be off balance causing negative effects on the endocrine system of the fetus or breastfeeding baby.
It also helps the hepatic and lymphatic systems, removing metabolic waste, which causes toxins to circulate in the body before being expelled. It is important to note that red clover works as a diuretic. The last concern is for women with bleeding disorders or taking blood thinning medications. Women with risks of miscarriage should not use this herb.
However, all of these concerns are quite subjective since it really does depend on the person taking the herb, as well as the potency, dosage, administration and preparation. When herbs have contracting views it is always best to consult a specialist.
Those herbalists that do recommend it and many pregnancy teas include it, rage about the health benefits of red clover. Infusions can prevent and ease constipation, strengthen the liver and improve appetite, which can be very helpful for women who suffer from morning sickness. All its minerals will help a women replenish what she has lost during pregnancy and lactation. Red clover helps produce abundant breast milk.
If you use red clover during pregnancy and lactation it is best to follow these guidelines. Do not drink more than 2 quarts per week and it is best to combine it with other nutritive herbs. Use the whole plant instead of supplements which isolate specific plant chemicals and can be too powerful. Scientific research that caused a negative impression of this herb were done with isolated chemical compounds using very high doses, which is not how you would be using red clover.
Red Clover during Menopause
One of the main benefits of red clover is its ability to help women deal with menopause symptoms. Many women use it to treat hot flashes because of its phytoestrogen content. This herb can help with vaginal dryness, just like during the preparation for pregnancy. It can also be effective in reducing depression and anxiety.
As women get closer to menopause, their reduction in hormones (mostly estrogen) can lead to low bone mineral density. This condition where the bones become weak is called osteoporosis. The isoflavones (a type of phytoestrogen) can mimic estrogen in the body. Some studies have found that it actually helps, although more studies are needed.
There are studies about the benefits of red clover on the blood lipid levels (high cholesterol) and bone mineral density. It seems to reduce the LDL-cholesterol (“bad” cholesterol) and increase the HDL-cholesterol (“good” cholesterol). Additionally, it reduces the C-reactive protein and triglyceride.
Since it reduces inflammation, especially in the cardiovascular system, it can aliviate the tension in the blood vessels and arteries causing a reduction in blood pressure, thus preventing coronary heart diseases. Coumarins in red clover keep the blood flowing and stimulate healthy circulation. Traditionally the color red is associated with blood purifying.
One of the benefits of red clover is its anti cancer properties. Many use this herb in combination with anticancer medications since it has anti tumor properties. It is specifically beneficial for men with prostate cancer since it reduces prostate-specific antigen (PSA). Women with breast cancer can use this with estradiol, since they both act as an estrogen antagonist (blocker).
Red clover can help support a healthy scalp and skin. Since one of the benefits of red clover is removing metabolic waste and blood purification, this herb is useful for treating skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema and other skin irritations that ooze or crack. This function also may be helpful for women with cyclic acne.
For skin problems, it is best to make a poultice, which can be combined with calendula, yellow dock and nettle. Or simply chop the flowers and mix them with a little water to place on the skin.
Other benefits of red clover include an increase in hair growth and improvements in appearance and texture of hair and skin in both men and women. Hair growth studies applied the extract directly on the scalp.
In traditional medicine, this herb was smoked as an anti-asthmatic. Since red clover is an expectorant and antispasmodic, it is helpful in curing inflamed lungs and bronchitis. It is also mildly sedative, which works for coughs. This herb can also be used to counteract fevers.