Red clover has been used for hundreds of years as a natural herbal remedy to treat many different diseases, including joint problems, respiratory illnesses, muscular aches and pains (particularly mastitis), inflammation of the skin and other soft tissue, and many types of cancer.
It was discovered originally by grazers who found that their cattle grew particularly healthy and illness-free after grazing on the wild red plants.
It is believed to act as a diuretic, expelling excess fluid from the body, and an expectorant to rid the lungs and airways of potentially harmful mucous.
Additionally, it has been used as a liver tonic and agent to improve the blood flow and general circulation.
Highly recommended for both male and female
Scientists have proven the instincts of ancient medicine men to be correct, in finding that red clover contains high levels of chemicals called isoflavones, which simulate some of the effects of estrogen in the body, and are used variously to treat the symptoms of menopause, such as dizziness and hot flushes, as well as ease the pain of those suffering osteoporosis, and reduces the risk of complications for patients with cardiovascular problems.
In fact it has been identified as one of the richest source of these water-soluble estrogen copycats in the natural world.
Where it is mostly found and what does it contain?
It is quite a common herb, which grows natively in parts of Europe and Asia, and has now been introduced to several other places including North America.
The distinctive red flowers are thought to be the most potent part of the plant, and it is these that are usually druid and prepared for medicinal purposes.
This remedy is also a good source of many essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, potassium, calcium, magnesium, niacin, thiamine and phosphorus.
How it so effective for human body?
The water soluble isoflavones in red clover can improve cardiovascular health by increasing the levels of healthy cholesterol, known as HDL cholesterol, in the bloodstream.
These results have proven particularly effective in the case of premenopausal and postmenopausal women, for whom supplementing their diets with red clover is thought to strengthen their blood vessels as well as acting as a blood thinner to improve the blood flow and thereby also facilitate improved mental function.
In addition, this remedy has been found to increase the effects of other blood thinners when taken in conjunction with them, and is sometimes used synergistically in this fashion to compliment other treatment options.
Ongoing studies into the effect of red clover supplements on patients with osteoporosis show preliminary findings that those subjects who received regular supplementation of their diets with red clover showed a reduced rate of bone density loss and possibly even a regrowth of bone mineral density.
More investigation is needed into this possible application of the herb.
Can be a possible medicine for preventing cancer
This remedy has been used as a cancer therapy for many centuries, and modern science is confirming that the isoflavones present in such high quantities in red clover do play a role in restricting the growth of cancerous cells, with laboratory experiments showing such results.
It may also be particularly effective in the treatment of endometrial and prostate cancers.
However, estrogen can have a detrimental effect for sufferers of certain types of cancer, and more studies are needed to confirm that red clover, which possesses estrogen-like qualities, would not have the same effect in these cases.
For this reason, women suffering from breast cancer, or with a family history of cancer, are not recommended to take red clover supplements.
Useful for skin remedies also
Creams and ointments formulated using this remedy are popularly used to treat various skin conditions and rashes such as eczema and psoriasis, as well as in the case of flesh wounds to facilitate the healing process.
It also has a history as a treatment for children’s coughs.
However, these remedies are made using the this remedies flowers in traditional preparations.
More potent isoflavone extracts from red clover are not recommended for us as a treatment for any children’s illness.
Availability in medical stores and its dosage to be taken
Red clover is available in a variety of forms over the counter, including regular pills and capsules, as well as red clover tea and purer liquid preparations and tinctures.
Extracts of this remedy in the form of a more potent isoflavone supplement are also available, and red clover ointment can be used topically to treat skin conditions as described above.
The typical dosage of this remedy taken as a standard supplement is around 50-150mg daily, of which anywhere up to 90mg may be comprised of the potent red clover isoflavones.
There are no reported side-effects of using red clover as a therapeutic remedy in the forms described above.
Some people may experience more generalized side-effects as a result of some allergic or other reaction to the herb, in which case medical assistance should be sought immediately.
Red clover may interact with other drugs and medications, so you should consult your doctor if you are already taking, or plan to take medication in the future and are regularly supplementing with red clover or red clover isoflavones.