9 Surprising Benefits of Agrimony

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

The most impressive health benefits of agrimony include its ability to reduce inflammation, improve digestive functions, improve bladder control, lessen menstrual issues, clear up skin issues, detoxify the body, and boost hair and nail health.

What is Agrimony?

Agrimony is the name given to a genus of approximately 15 flowering species that can be found throughout the Northern hemisphere. These perennials can also be found in certain parts of Africa and have been celebrated for their medicinal uses for hundreds of years. While many of the potential benefits are still somewhat in contention, hundreds of years of tradition and countless confirmations of its effects have made it an important element of many herbalist practices and treatments. Some of the common names are liverwort, cockleburr, and sticklewort, but its scientific name is Agrimonia eupatoria [1]The best way to identify this species is by the yellow flowers that spring from the plant’s long, single, pinnate stems.

In ancient times, agrimony was often used in various brews, solutions, and tonics. The leaves and flowers contain a unique chemical composition that can act on the body as a detoxifying, astringent, coagulating, and anti-inflammatory substance. For this reason, it has been used in the direct or secondary treatment of a wide variety of ailments over time. Now, let’s take a closer look at the health benefits of agrimony. [2]

A close up shot of agrimony

Agrimony has an old reputation as a popular, domestic medicinal herb. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Health Benefits of Agrimony

Health benefits of agrimony include:

Alleviates Menstrual Discomfort

One of the most well-known uses of agrimony is as a coagulant that can reduce bleeding in the body and help heal wounds. While menstruation isn’t a “wound”, per se, agrimony can be administered orally to reduce heavy menstrual bleeding and reduce inflammation to make those difficult periods a bit more tolerable. [3]

Aids in Digestion

As an anti-inflammatory agent, agrimony has often been used to eliminate digestive and gastrointestinal issues, particularly diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome symptoms. By reducing irritation and inflammation in the membranes and tissues of the gut, it can significantly soothe the stomach.

Diabetes Management

Agrimony has long been studied for its potential anti-diabetic properties, which would be a huge step forward in solving one of the great medical mysteries of our generation. Apparently, the active components moderate the glucose and insulin uptake processes in the body better than many other natural diabetes treatments. [4]

Improves Respiratory Health

In a similar way as reducing inflammation in the gut, agrimony is also widely used to improve respiratory conditions that may involve inflammation, such as sore throats, chronic coughing, bronchitis, and other sinus issues. For colds, coughs, and flu, it can be an effective way to speed up the recovery and healing process. [5]

Improves Bladder Control

The astringent quality of agrimony is said to make bladder control easier. Since it is non-toxic and has shown no signs of having negative effects on health, it is being given to children for generations with no side effects or issues. [6]

Skin Health

When you are suffering from blemishes, pimples, rashes, acne, psoriasis, eczema, or any other skin condition, you can topically apply agrimony to the affected area and it can help to alleviate the issue. It can also be taken orally for the same effect. It works on irritation as well as blood eruptions that happen beneath the skin, like blotching and easy bruising due to its astringent properties. [7]

Detoxifies the Body

Agrimony’s active ingredients, such as thiamin, quercitrin, and catechins, have been directly linked to liver and gallbladder health. By optimizing the function of the liver and gallbladder, the body can more easily eliminate toxins that have built up, thereby preventing more serious health issues and promoting overall metabolic efficiency. [8]

Hair and Nail Strength

Silicic acid is also found in agrimony. This unique compound is known to significantly boost the strength, appearance, and overall health of the nails and hair, preventing easy breakage or a dull appearance. [9]

Anticancer Potential

Agrimony has found a variety of therapeutic uses worldwide, throughout history. A research article on the history of basal cell carcinoma suggests that leaves and seeds of this plant were used for topical application against various health conditions including cancer and ulcers. A 2015 paper published in the [10]Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical Science & Technology [11] suggests that plant extract has antitumor properties.

Another 2017 paper also points towards its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which could help in neutralizing free radicals. Agrimony may protect against the free radical damage linked to cancer incidence. [12]

Further studies are required to fully explore the anticancer potential of agrimony. [13]

A Final Word of Warning

In moderate amounts, agrimony is not known as a toxic or allergenic substance for people of all ages. However, due to its astringent properties that help treat so many conditions, this can also exacerbate constipation, so use with caution. Always consult a doctor before adding new herbal remedies to your daily or weekly health regimen.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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