The use of calendula tea, oil, extract, and tincture dates back to ancient Egyptian culture and early Christianity. Calendula (Calendula officinalis) has many health enhancing properties that can help heal inflamed skin, reduce pain and swelling, and support the renewal of skin cells.
The plant compounds found in calendula’s fiery red and yellow petals contain antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory properties. Two types of compounds, saponins and flavonoids, are important for immune function and for protecting cells from free radical damage.
Calendula is still best known for its ability to heal skin inflamed by chafing, blisters, bites and burns and to treat dermatitis, eczema, and diaper rashes. It can be found in medicinal lotions, creams, and ointments that are applied to the skin. Calendula reduces irritation and encourages new tissue growth. For women who would like to avoid taking prescription medications to treat bacterial vaginosis, calendula ointment or suppository is a viable option when used under clinical guidance.
Calendula flowers and leaves are used in capsules, oils, and tinctures. Only the petals are used to make tea, which is a beautiful orange color. Calendula tea can be served warm or cold, depending on how you intend to use it. For example, for menstrual cramps or general relaxation, warm calendula tea is best. For a refreshing boost to your inner health, iced calendula tea hits the spot. The tea has an earthy taste with a hint of pumpkin and mild spice. It’s best enjoyed lightly sweetened with cinnamon and agave or your preferred natural sweetener.
If you are considering medicinal use of calendula, check with a holistic health practitioner to determine which form of calendula is best to address your health concerns.
There are a few precautions for using calendula: Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding may use calendula topically, but should not take it by mouth. Calendula may interact with other medications, resulting in drowsiness. Since it’s part of the ragweed family, people sensitive to or allergic to marigold, daisy, or chrysanthemums should not use calendula products unless under a doctor’s care.