Red clover or Trifolium pratense is a popular perennial plant introduced to North America by European settlers. This perennial plant in the Fabaceae or pea family has a long taproot and a slender, hollow, and hairy stem. It produces two three-parted, and white V-embossed leaflets with purple-pink petals. Red clover flower health benefits range from managing indigestion to treating sexually transmitted diseases.
[Note: The Right Flowers is not a medical site. Knowledge of and information about the therapeutic benefits and applications of flowers, while known through the ages, does not constitute medical advice. If you are having health issues, you should consult with a physician.]
According to ancient wisdom, which has been confirmed by modern studies, the shape and colors of flowers reveal the beneficial properties of the plant in a concept known as the Doctrine of Signatures.
Ben Harris, a nutritionist, herbalist, and author of various books including Eat the Weeds, The Compleat Herbal, and Kitchen Medicines, says that colors such as red point to the healing or astringent properties of the plant. This explains why red clover has been used for years to treat fever, respiratory conditions, and skin problems. At some point in history, the clover was smoked to calm asthmatic attacks.
The plant contains many valuable nutrients including potassium, niacin, chromium phosphorus, vitamin C and calcium as well as thiamine. It is also rich in flavonoids, cyanogenic glycosides, phenolic glycosides, and salicylates as well as polysaccharides.
Red clover flower health benefits include:
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The plant is considered one of the ideal sources of isoflavones (a water-soluble compound with estrogen-like capabilities). Isoflavones extracted from red clover have been shown to hold a lot of promise in reducing hot flashes experienced by menopausal women.
Emerging evidence from preliminary studies shows that red clover has the ability to lower chances of developing prostate cancer. A study conducted in 2009 showed that men suffering from prostate cancer experienced a decrease in prostate-specific antigen (PSA), a protein found in men with prostate cancer.
However, since red clover has estrogen-like effects, there are risks of its administration promoting the development of cancers that are boosted by estrogen including endometrial and breast cancer.
Antispasmodic, expectorant and sedative
Red clover is used to treat and manage respiratory problems such as inflamed lungs and bronchitis due to its antispasmodic and expectorant properties. In addition, the sedative capabilities of the plant complement its antispasmodic effects, making red clover an effective treatment for coughs.
Red clover has alterative properties. This makes it ideal for helping the body get rid of toxins. These blood-purification capabilities make red clover a good remedy for conditions such as psoriasis and eczema.
In spite of all the red clover flower health benefits outlined above, the plant is still considered a weed by most people. As a result, you may not need to go searching for red clover as it thrives abundantly in yards, fields, and roadsides especially from May to September.