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Melilotus officinalis – Melilot, yellow melilot
Fabaceae, formerly Papilionaceae – Legume family

The raw material is the melilot herb – Melioti herba, harvested during blooming in July and dried in natural conditions (shaded and ventilated) or in drying rooms in max. 35° C.

Melilot – appearance and origin:

Herbaceous plant, annual or biennial, appears in Western, Central and Easter Europe, in temperate zones of Asia, migrated to the Mediterranean and North America, common in Poland in lowlands in dry brushes, meadows, roadsides. Sometimes cultivated for green manure. Tall stem up to 100-150 cm, elevated, bare, pubescent in the upper parts. Few leaves, trifoliate, petiolate, thin leaves, elongated and obovate, irregularly serrated with large gaps, lanceolate bracts. Small yellow flowers, typical for legumes, collected into long-pediceled, one-sided flower groups of 30-70. Blooms from June to September. Melliferous, known since the ancient times, poisonous. Big quantities if consumed cause internal bleeding, liver and kidney damage, diziness.

Melilot – effects and use:

The raw material contains: coumarin compounds (0,9% coumarin, up to 0,2% melilotine, free coumaric acid, dicoumarol), allantoin, flavonoids, tannins. Glycosides of hydroxycinnamic acids contained in the fresh herb are transformed into coumarin during drying.

The melilot herb reduces blood coagulability, improving the blood flow through venous and capillary vessels, and has anti-inflammatory activity.

Internally, it is only used as an ingredient of herbal combinations. It must be taken with caution, as due to its anticoagulant activity (coumarine) it may cause internal bleeding.

Externally, used for softening the skin and wound healing. Melilot products for internal use should be used un small doses and for short periods.

It is best to follow your doctor's advice. This applies especially to people with hemorrhagic diathesis and people taking anticoagulant medication (e.g. aspirin, polopirin). Should be taken with caution by people with liver and kidney failure.