Evening Primrose Herb  (Oenothera biennis)
Evening Primrose Herb  (Oenothera biennis)

Evening Primrose Herb (Oenothera biennis)

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Evening primrose is a plant native to North and South America. It also grows throughout Europe and parts of Asia. It has yellow flowers which open at sunset and close during the day.  

Evening primrose has also been traditionally used to treat asthma, eczema (atopic dermatitis), psoriasis, acne, and dry, itchy, or thickened skin (ichthyosis), attention deficit- hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), hepatitis B, high cholesterol, liver cancer, breast pain, obesity, menopausal hot flashes and night sweats, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), and skin or joint symptoms of psoriasis.  Some people take evening primrose by mouth for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and nerve damage related to diabetes. Evening primrose is also taken by mouth for stomach and intestinal disorders including ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, and peptic ulcer disease.

The oil from the seeds of evening primrose is used to make medicine.

Evening primrose is also used for rheumatoid arthritis, a type of arthritis that affects people with psoriasis, weak bones (osteoporosis), bone loss (osteopenia), Raynaud's syndrome, multiple sclerosis (MS), Sjogren's syndrome, dry eyes, liver cancer, hepatitis B, severe itchy skin due to biliary cirrhosis, heart disease, a movement disorder in children called dyspraxia, a learning disorder characterized by reading problems (dyslexia), leg pain due to blocked blood vessels (intermittent claudication), alcoholism, a nerve condition usually caused by certain psychiatric drugs (tardive dyskinesia), Alzheimer's disease, and schizophrenia.

Women have taken evening primrose by mouth during pregnancy for preventing high blood pressure (pre-eclampsia), shortening labor, starting labor, and preventing late deliveries. Women also use evening primrose for premenstrual syndrome (PMS), breast pain, and symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes. It is also taken by mouth for endometriosis, a condition in which tissue that normally lines the uterus grows outside the uterus.

Evening primrose is applied to the skin for eczema (atopic dermatitis).

The bark and the leaves are astringent and sedative. They have proved of use in the treatment of gastro-intestinal disorders of a functional origin, whooping cough and asthma. A syrup made from the flowers is also an effective treatment for whooping cough. The bark is stripped from the flowering stem and dried for later use, the leaves are also harvested and dried at this time.  The poulticed root is applied to piles and bruises. A tea made from the roots is used in the treatment of obesity and bowel pains.

In foods, the oil from evening primrose is used as a source of essential fatty acids.

 To prepare a tisane: 1 TBSP herb to 8-12oz boiling water, Steep 3 mins, re-steep 3 times. 1oz makes 35 cups 


Due to the numerous traditional medicinal uses of Evening Primrose please see Doctor or Medical practitioner first, particularly if you have a known medical condition of if you are or suspect you are pregnant or nursing.

Disclaimer: The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment. Please consult your medical care provider before using herbal medicine, particularly if you have a known medical condition of if you are or suspect you are pregnant or nursing.



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