What are some ways to drink vermouth
Natural medicine active ingredient wormwood
Artemisia: consecrated to the goddess Artemis
Closely related to each other are the three aromatically scented daisy family wormwood (Artemisia absinthium), mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) and rowan (Artemisia abrotanum). Their name Artemisia is said to be derived from the goddess Artemis, who is often equated with the goddess of birth Ilithia.
It shows our ancestors' respect for these native plants as women's remedies. They have always been used to support a wide variety of women's ailments, but also pregnancy and childbirth. Usually only the upper leaves of the medicinal plants were used for this.
Vermouth: the bitter mugwort
All 3 medicinal plants are indigenous to us in Central Europe and also spread throughout Europe. In America they were introduced by the Spaniards in the Middle Ages - as yerba santa, or holy herb.
Wormwood is also known as bitter mugwort - because of its high content of bitter substances. It even became a typically German phrase: the downside of something - as a term for something that has a bitter aftertaste.
Although wormwood occurs occasionally all over Europe, larger wild occurrences are particularly known from the Valais in Switzerland.
Vermouth is good for everything
Strictly speaking, this originally Bergisch saying means: “Wermot is got for everything”. It suggests that wormwood has been of great importance both as a medicinal product and as a stimulant for thousands of years. Saint Hildegard von Bingen praised him as "the most important master against all exhaustion".
But the inedibility or toxicity of the plant in higher doses was probably known early on and is expressed in the name absinthum. This can be derived from apsinthos for unpleasant or also from apinthos for undrinkable.
Vermouth is good for the stomach
Paracelsus already knew about the beneficial effects of the plant on the gastrointestinal tract. But he also knew that this was more likely to affect a full stomach, such as flatulence after eating. On an empty stomach, wormwood may even be irritating. The reason for this is the high content of bitter substances, which stimulate the appetite and the formation of digestive juices. These in turn are the reason why grazing cattle avoid wormwood. Paracelsus knew that too: “All herbs that cows avoid have great power!”. Whether this power works as a medicine or as a poison - that is a question of the dose. As is so often the case with medicinal plants. Vermouth plays a very special role in this context: While it is slightly bitter as vermouth and therefore a popular aperitif, real absinthe, i.e. the schnapps made with vermouth, has been banned in Europe for decades.
Vermouth or Absinthe?
The fresh or dried wormwood was already used in ancient times to make wormwood. At the end of the 18th century, the Frenchman M. Pernod, who lives in Switzerland, invented the emerald green absinthe. To do this, he first distilled a mash from various herbs. Later only the distilled essential oil of wormwood was added because the entire herbal extract usually became too bitter. According to other recipes, this famous drink was simply made as an alcoholic extract from various herbs. Absinthe was already a fashion drug in artistic circles in the 19th century: Toulouse-Lautrec, Paul Gauguin, Edouard Manet and Vincent van Gogh, but also Ernest Hemingway and Victor Hugo are well-known protagonists.
The problem with absinthe is the high content of the ingredient thujone. Thujone is a component of the essential oil that is not only found in wormwood, but also in thuja and many types of chrysanthemum. The neurotoxin thujone has an abortive effect and can cause permanent psychological damage. This phenomenon is known as absinthism and led to the fact that real absinthe is banned worldwide today - just like the earlier common flavoring and bitterness of various spirits with thujone. Trendy drinks that were and are offered under the name “Green Fee” used to contain real absinthe. Since this has been banned across Europe for around 100 years - with the threat of severe fines, today it is mostly other herbal mixtures.
Like wormwood teas and medicines containing wormwood, vermouth wine does not contain any large amounts of thujone. This allows the positive and digestive effects to unfold to the full.
It is usually recommended to take medicines with bitter substances before eating so that the production of digestive juices is stimulated. But wormwood is also very good as a component of a tea to promote digestion and prevent flatulence after eating.
The fresh upper parts of the plant are used in homeopathy. Artemisia absinthium is mainly contained in homeopathic complex remedies that are used to treat pain, nausea and inflammation in the gastrointestinal area.
Homeopathic use of wormwood
the stomach calmer supports:
- Inflammation of the stomach lining
Phytotherapeutic use of wormwood
- Has a digestive and antispasmodic effect
- stimulates bile flow
- supports digestive disorders
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