Achillea millefolium is a plant of the Asteraceae family that can live up to 2500 meters above sea level. It blooms from June to September and has white to pink flowers.
Also known as "cut grass", legend has it that it was used by Achilles, the famous hero of Greek mythology, during the Trojan War to heal soldiers' wounds. Milfoil is also known for its haemostatic properties (stopping bleeding) thanks to achillein, its main active compound.
In phytotherapy, milfoil is used for its flowering tops containing sesquiterpene lactones, including achillin, millefine and bachanolide. These bitter compounds are used in cases of temporary loss of appetite.
Yarrow also contains flavonoids (apigenin, vitexin, vicenin) with antioxidant properties as well as alkaloid-like nitrogen derivatives such as betaine, stachydrin and achillein.
Milfoil is traditionally used in the case of digestive disorders (bloating, flatulence). Its antispasmodic action is very effective in case of painful menstrual spasms. Yarrow is also used in cases of dysmenorrhoea thanks to the presence of mefenamic acid. In addition to its anti-inflammatory properties, this plant also has analgesic and antioxidant properties.
Yarrow can also be used locally to treat small superficial wounds. Used as a sitz bath, the plant can relieve pelvic pain in women. Used topically, yarrow can be a soothing and antipruritic adjunct treatment for dermatological conditions. Moreover, its essential oil is used in aromatherapy in case of wounds, cuts but also muscle cramps and dysmenorrhea.
Milfoil helps to reduce blood cholesterol levels and maintain normal vascular function. It also promotes renal excretion. Traditionally used to facilitate digestion, yarrow contributes to digestive comfort and, in women, helps to soothe periodic abdominal pain.
Milfoil is the subject of more than 35 scientific publications.