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Roses and rose hips in herbal medicine

Rose – (Rosa Centifolia or Rosa Damascena) are more than a beautiful flower. The petals are often used in herbal medicine, the essential oil is used in massage or aromatherapy, and the seed pods (hips) are an excellent source of vitamin C.

Rose petals are made into tea for the treatment of stress, depression, sinus congestion, colds, digestive ailments, nausea, vomiting, constipation, sore throats, coughs, swollen eyes, puffiness, broken capillaries, insomnia, PMS, menopausal symptoms, reduced libido, and eating disorders. The tea can be taken as a drink, used as a gargle, or applied as a wash.

Rose oil is used externally to help regenerate skin, to promote feelings of well-being, and to purify the system. The scent of rose oil is very soothing for the nervous system. It is a gentle sedative and can help stop panic attacks. When combined with Melissa oil, the mixture is known to help herpes sores and other skin eruptions disappear.

Rose oil is good when combined with lavender essential oil. Use this combination to rub into the lymph nodes for detoxification and revitalization. Rose oil contains over 300 chemicals, of which only 100 have been identified. Who knows what scientists may one day discover about this magnificent flower!

The scent of roses is soft and sensual. Rose oil is known as the Queen of Essential Oils. It is very expensive since it takes 30 roses to make one drop of oil. Rose oil is an aphrodisiac and is considered a good remedy for disorders of the female system.

Rose oil is often included in cosmetic creams for its refreshing and tonic effect on sensitive skin.  The oil is very appropriate for mature skin as it moisturizes and helps diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Rose oil, diluted in distilled water, may be used as a compress to treat tired or inflamed eyes. Rose oil is anti-bacterial, astringent, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and a good anti-depressant.

The scent of roses is considered to be an aid to meditation. It helps balance hormones and soothes anxiety that may cause frigidity or impotence.  When used in a gentle massage, rose oil can help heal broken capillaries and stimulate circulation. (Rose water is less expensive and may be used as a substitute.)

Rose oil is used in many fine perfumes. The scent is rich with flowery undertones and can help promote feelings of well-being. Stopping to smell a rose can actually help cure grief, resentment, and anger.

Rose hips are actually seed pods and are sometimes used as a kidney tonic. One cup of prepared rose hips equals the vitamin C content of 144 oranges. Harvest rose hips in the fall for making nourishing teas, syrups, and fruit drinks. (To prepare, cut off stem and blossom ends, slit down one side with a knife, and remove seeds.)

Roses come in countless varieties. All are edible but the wild varieties are preferred for use in herbal medicine. Both cultivated and wild roses are used in cooking to make jellies, jams, and garnishes.

* Avoid rose oil during the first four months of pregnancy. Always consult with a physician before using any herbal remedy.

Read more about rose essential oil