Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium), also called partenelle, is a plant of the Asteraceae family. Known since Antiquity, it is mainly used against migraines.
Feverfew contains sesquiterpene lactones, in particular parthenolide, an active ingredient acting against headaches. Its concentration being maximum during flowering, this is the reason why the flowering aerial parts of feverfew are used in phytotherapy.
Feverfew helps to fight against the two main components of migraine which are vasodilatation and inflammation, both responsible for the pain. Indeed, this plant takes part in the inhibition of the vasodilatation of the trigeminovascular system, which ensures the innervation of the envelope of the brain : the meninges.
Moreover, the parthenolide and the flavonoids of the feverfew prevent the release of pro-inflammatory mediators and inhibit the enzymes implied in the inflammation.
The large camomile also exerts analgesic properties allowing to fight against the pain. In addition, parthenolide limits the release of CGRP (Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide) by the trigeminal neurons, neuropeptide implied in the vasodilatation. This plant also participates in the protection of the cells of the blood vessels walls thanks to its antioxidant properties.
The use of feverfew is recommended for the prevention of headaches by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). It contributes to the maintenance of a normal blood circulation and participates in an antioxidant effect thanks to its flavonoids. Feverfew is involved in maintaining a clear mind and helps to stay relaxed.