Mugwort, scientifically known as Artemisia vulgaris, is an herbaceous plant that has been used in traditional medicine and cultural practices for centuries. It is primarily known for its potential medicinal properties and various traditional uses.
Mugwort has been used to support digestive health and alleviate gastrointestinal issues. It is believed to have carminative properties which can help relieve gas, bloating, and indigestion. It may also stimulate appetite and promote healthy digestion. Mugwort is choleretic. That is a substance that increases the volume of secretion of bile from the liver, helping to transport and release toxins whilst providing great benefit to the digestive system. It is also a chologogue , being a substance that stimulates the flow of bile from the liver, differing slightly from a cholerectic which increases the volume. The role of bile is primarily that of facilitating fat digestion, but also being a natural laxative it is thus cleansing to the system.
It is often used to support women's health, particularly during menstruation. It is believed to have emmenagogue properties, which can help regulate menstrual flow and alleviate menstrual cramps. However, it should be used with caution during pregnancy as it may stimulate uterine contractions.
Mugwort has been used traditionally as a sleep aid and to promote relaxation. It is believed to have sedative properties that can help improve sleep quality and alleviate insomnia. It may also be used to reduce anxiety and stress.
Mugwort has been used topically for its potential benefits on the skin. It is believed to have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that can help soothe skin irritations and alleviate conditions such as eczema and dermatitis.
In some cultural practices, mugwort is believed to enhance dreams and promote vivid or lucid dreaming. It may be used in herbal pillows, sachets or as a tea for this purpose.