Belladonna is a perennial plant with a short and stout rhizome from which he pulls a very long cylindrical root. The stem has alternate leaves, oval and soft, its edges are intact, supported by short slender stalks. Among the leaves are the flowers, isolated and pendants, which are violet purple on the outside and a dirty yellowish inside with a red veins. The ripe fruit is the size of a cherry, it is a berry with a reddish-black, shiny, which is inserted into a chalice with a star and purple juice. Within the fruit is a small kidney-shaped seeds.
It blooms from May until well into the summer. For your collection is to be expected in late summer because that is when their leaves and roots are rich in active principles are cut and they are dried at a temperature of 30 grados CelsiusC in well ventilated areas.
Both the leaves and root are rich in alkaloids among which one can cite hyoscyamine, atropine and scopolamine as the most important. These substances act on certain areas of the nervous system, paralyzing its activity, sometimes dramatically, as does the effect of pupil dilation (mydriasis), which occurs immediately after implementation. In fact, the name seems to come from belladonna that Italian women use made of this plant, because, apparently, applied eye purple fruit juice, and dilating the pupils, at the same time gave them a great brightness, which was considered synonymous with beauty. Currently, the mydriatic effect is used in ophthalmology to perform eye examinations.
Furthermore, these alkaloids have bronchodilator, vasoconstrictor, and decrease salivary secretions, gastric, nasal, perspiration, etc.., While that fight digestive spasmodic contraction level. It also has analgesic effect when applied externally.
Importantly, it is reserved for medical personnel, the many problems could arise. It is also contraindicated in people with hypertension or glaucoma.
cooking. 30 gr belladonna leaves in a quart of water. Boil, drain and compresses locally. Indicated against hemorrhoids.
Ointments. External soothing. Used 5 g of belladonna extract and 30 g of butter. Local analgesic.
Leaf powder. Between 0.02 and 0.1 g of powdered leaf in any case not exceeding 0.35 g per day.
Alcoholic tincture. In a 1 to 10. Between 5 and 15 drops per day.
At the pharmacy can be found as a component of belladonna compounds many preparations, tablets, ointments and syrups, but always under medical prescription.
PART USED: Leaves and root
CASTILIAN: Solano mayor
CATALAN: Tabac bord
Toxic Strong, Fort mydriatic, Vasoconstrictor Leve.
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