Part Used: Dried flowering herb
Chickweed (Stellaria media) is an annual or biennial weed found in abundance all over the world in gardens, fields, lawns, waste places, and along roadsides. The usually creeping, brittle stems grow from 4 to 12 inches long and bear opposite, entire, ovate leaves. The small white flowers can be found blooming all year long in terminal, leafy cymes or solitary in the leaf axils. It is very nutritious, high in vitamins and minerals, can be added to salads or cooked as a pot herb, tasting somewhat like spinach. The major constituents in Chickweed are Ascorbic-acid, Beta-carotene, Calcium, Coumarins, Genistein, Gamma-linolenic-acid, Flavonoids, Hentriacontanol, Magnesium, Niacin, Oleic-acid, Potassium, Riboflavin, Rutin, Selenium, Triterpenoid saponins, Thiamin, and Zinc. The whole plant is used in alternative medicine as an astringent, carminative, demulcent, diuretic, expectorant, laxative, refrigerant, and vulnerary.
Chickweed is used as a remedy for eczema, insect stings and bites, bronchitis, pleurisy, coughs, colds, hoarseness, rheumatism, inflammation, weakness of the bowels and stomach, lungs, bronchial tubes, and any other forms of internal inflammation with the herb properties like demulcent, refrigerant, mucilaginous, pectoral, resolvent, discutient, etc. A decoction of the whole plant is taken internally as a post-partum depurative, emmenagogue, galactogogue and circulatory tonic. It is also used to relieve constipation; an infusion of the dried herb is used in coughs and hoarseness; and is beneficial in the treatment of kidney complaints. Although Chickweed was formerly taken orally to treat several types of conditions, no evidence currently supports any medical use for it when taken by mouth. It may, however, provide a soothing effect when applied to skin irritations because it may have a mild astringent effect. An astringent shrinks and tightens the top layers of skin or mucous membranes, thereby reducing secretions, relieving irritation, and improving tissue firmness.
Alternative Nature Online Herb. http://altnature.com/gallery/chickweed.htm
Holistic Online. http://www.holisticonline.com/Herbal-Med/_Herbs/h45.htm
Drug Digest. http://www.drugdigest.org/DD/DVH/HerbsWho/0,3923,4096%7CChickweed,00.html