Marcela is one of the popular names of the species Achyrocline satureioides , native to Brazil and very popular in the south of the country. It is used in the preparation of a home remedy used as a natural tranquilizer .
In addition to calming the nerves, this little plant, also known as macela-do-campo or national chamomile, can help relieve and reduce the symptoms of inflammatory diseases, help treat infections and protect the skin against external aggressions.
Best of all, the herb is very easy to find and has few contraindications for use.
Marcela benefits for your health
Soothes in a natural way
In the flowers of marcela are found substances recognized as depressors of the Central Nervous System (CNS), so one of its main benefits is as a natural tranquilizer.
Due to this effect on the CNS, the infusion not only induces sleep , but also increases the amount of time a person spends sleeping, indicating that it can also be used as a natural therapy for people suffering from insomnia . ( 2 )
Relieves the pain
Drinking a cup of tea prepared with the flowers of this herb can be, depending on the doses used, more effective than an aspirin tablet in relieving pain.
The potent analgesic effect is due to the presence of compounds known as flavonoids, responsible for giving the flowers a vibrant tone.
When consumed as an infusion, these substances have the power to reduce contortions, contributing directly to pain relief, especially those caused by spasms, such as muscle and menstrual cramps . ( 2 )
Marcela tea is effective in the treatment of infections, both caused by viruses , bacteria and some types of fungi.
The compounds that are extracted from the flowers are able to prevent the proliferation of bacteria such as Salmonella enteritidis , which can cause gastrointestinal infections, and Staphylococcus aureus , which causes from pneumonia to infections in the heart and bones. ( 3 )
Regarding viruses, the infusion is able to stop the replication of microorganisms that cause influenza (influenza), the common cold and more of the causes of herpes, known as cytomegalovirus.
The plant also inhibits the growth of Candida albicans , a species of fungus that causes candidiasis , a type of vaginal infection. ( 1 )
Controls blood glucose
Anyone who suffers from diabetes , a disease derived from the difficulty of absorption or low production of insulin, can benefit from another benefit found in the flowers of marcela: the control of blood glucose.
Flavonoids inhibit the production of glucosidases, which are a type of enzyme that participates in the transformation of carbohydrates into glucose.
Furthermore, the herb showed the potential to inhibit two other enzymes : maltase, released by the small intestine, and pancreatic alpha-amylase, both of which actively participate in increasing the blood glucose level.
Consuming the infusion regularly can be of great help in stabilizing the sugar levels of those struggling with this disease. ( 4 )
protect the liver
The flavonoids found in marcela flowers also make herb tea a great option to give the liver that little boost to work properly.
The plant contributes to the increase of glutathione, an antioxidant molecule that protects liver cells against oxidation (degradation), as well as stimulates the production of bile, which is a type of natural detergent that the body uses to break down fat.
In addition to protecting the integrity of cells, preventing them from suffering changes caused by damage. This is helpful in preventing and fighting liver cancer . ( 5 )
Fights Brain Degeneration
Consuming marcela tea collaborates with the treatment and prevention of some types of neurodegenerative diseases (which cause the death of neurons ). It has an anti-apoptotic effect, which prevents the premature death of these cells. ( 1 )
Because it is rich in quercetin, luteolin and isoramnetine, marcela prevents injuries resulting from problems such as cerebrovascular accident (stroke) and ischemia (when the organ receives little oxygen).
The result is a lower risk of developing any of these illnesses or a faster recovery of people who have been through the problem.
The herb is safe, so it can be used even by the elderly or people who are at risk for these diseases. ( 6 )
recover the skin
Not only the consumption of tea brings benefits to the body. The same infusion can be used for topical application, that is, on the skin to relieve the symptoms of sunburn . [ See how to lighten sun spots ]
The herb’s flowers have the potential to protect against ultraviolet rays, which penetrate the skin and increase the risk of cancer, blemishes and premature aging.
It can be applied in the after-sun, promoting faster recovery of the region and relief from discomfort. ( 7 )
How to prepare marcela tea?
Preparing marcela tea is easy. Put 1 teaspoon of marcela flowers in a cup of boiling water, cover and let it simmer for at least 10 minutes to extract all medicinal properties. After that, just strain and drink while still warm .
Care and contraindications
Marcela is considered a safe plant. The consumption of the herb in the indicated doses does not cause any type of symptom or biological alteration.
However, diabetics and pregnant women should only use it under the supervision of a specialist.
Furthermore, it is not necessary to drink more than 4 cups of tea a day, as this amount is already more than enough to absorb all its therapeutic properties. ( 8 )
Where to find?
It is possible to find this plant growing naturally in fields and on roadsides, as it does not need much care and it spreads very easily, which is why it is considered a weed .
If you don’t find it in your region, rest assured that it can be purchased at fairs and stores specializing in natural products.