Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Overview, Health Benefits, Side effects

Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Overview, Health Benefits, Side effects


Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Overview


Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) other names: Blind Weed, Bolsa del Pastor, Bolsa-de-Pastor, Bourse à Berger, Bourse-à-Pasteur, Bourse de Capucin, Boursette, Bursae Pastoris Herba, Capsella, Capselle, Capselle a Pasteur, Capselle Bourse-à-Pasteur, Capsella bursa-pastoris, Caseweed, Cocowort, Corne de Lion, Erva-Do-Bom-Pastor, Hirtentaschel, Lady's Purse, Molette de Berger, Mother's-Heart, Moutarde Sauvage, Naeng-i, Pepper-And-Salt, Pick-Pocket, Poor Man's Parmacettie, Rattle Pouches, Sanguinary, Shepherd's Heart, Shepherd's Scrip, Shepherd's Sprout, Shovelweed, St. James' Weed, Tabouret, Tabouret des Champs, Thlaspi, Thlaspi Bourse à Pasteur, Thlaspi bursa-pastoris, Toywort, Witches' Pouches, Zurron de Pastor.

Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Overview, Health Benefits, Side effects
Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) plant


Shepherd's purse (botanical name Capsella bursa-pastoris) is a weed-like annually growing herb that produces white flowers. This plant belongs to the mustard family and its diminutive flowers emerge as a four-armed cross. Shepherd's purse is not susceptible to frosts and it is well-known for catching the fancy of wildlife. The flowers of shepherd's purse are hermaphrodite, denoting that each flower possesses both the male as well as the female organs. While the Shepherd's purse is self-fertile, its flowers are pollinated by themselves.

The herb shepherd's purse is an important item for your natural emergency kit. You should keep some amount of shepherd's purse in your emergency kit owing to the herb's exceptional attribute to stop all types of hemorrhages almost instantly. In case you are suffering from a chronic nosebleed which has not responded to any conventional medications, it is advisable that you drench a few cotton balls in a small amount of tea prepared with shepherd's purse, force out the surplus liquid and put them in the nostrils with a view to control any further bleeding.

Shepherd's purse can also be used internally. The tea prepared with shepherd's purse herb may be applied externally in its cold form to any lesion with soaked cloth compresses or by holding cotton balls soaked in the cold tea firmly against the wound till the hemorrhage stops completely. This tea may also be used in a similar fashion to heal skin ulcers, scratches and bites.

In fact, the herbal tea prepared with shepherd's purse is among the finest teas that any woman can drink after haemorrhaging following childbirth. In this case, the tea ought to be taken many cups at the same time in its cold form. In addition, shepherd's purse is also an excellent remedy for conditions like bloody stool and urine, in addition to haemorrhages from the lungs.

It is believed that shepherd's purse is indigenous to Europe and Asia, but now shepherd's purse is found growing in almost all places having temperate climatic conditions. In fact, shepherd's purse grows copiously in the form of weeds in temperate regions. Shepherd's purse is harvested all through the year.

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Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Health Benefits


Shepherd's purse is a plant. The parts that grow above the ground are used to make medicine.

Shepherd's purse is used for heart and circulatory problems including mild heart failure, low blood pressure, and nervous heart complaints. Shepherd's purse is also used for headache, vomitingblood, blood in the urine, diarrhea, and bladder infections.

The herb shepherd's purse is known to be among the best natural medication that prevents and/ or stops hemorrhages and has been used for a long time especially to cure profuse uterine hemorrhages. Although compared to ergot, the action of shepherd's purse is weak, this herb is less toxic in comparison to ergot and, hence, the body is able to tolerate it better. In fact, shepherd's purse can be used to prevent as well as stop all types of bleeding, ranging from nosebleeds to blood in urine and stool. Shepherd's purse possesses astringent properties and, hence, shepherd's purse is effective in disinfecting the urinary tract when one is enduring cystitis. For the same purpose, shepherd's purse is also used to treat diarrhea. In Chinese medicine, shepherd's purse is used to treat dysentery as well as eye problems.

Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Overview, Health Benefits, Side effects
Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) image


While shepherd's purse is rarely used in herbal medicine today, it is a frequently used home remedy, since it is highly useful in treating internal as well as external hemorrhages, besides treating cystitis and diarrhea as well as other disorders. An herbal tea prepared with the whole shepherd's purse plant is known to be astringent, anti-scorbutic (a medication that is effective against scurvy), diuretic, haemostatic (a medication that stops bleeding), emmenagogue (a medication that encourages menstrual discharge), oxytocic (a medication that promotes child birth), hypotensive (any agent that causes low blood pressure), vasoconstrictor, stimulant or tonic, vulnerary (a medicine that promotes healing of wounds) and vasodilator. Similarly, a tea prepared with the dehydrated shepherd's purse plant is believed to be an independent medication to prevent as well as stop all types of bleedings - including hemorrhages of the stomach, the uterus, the lungs and particularly the kidneys.

Women use shepherd's purse for premenstrual problems, long periods, and menstrual cramps.

Shepherd's purse is sometimes applied directly to the skin for nosebleeds, superficial burns, and bleeding skin injuries.

Shepherd's purse, which grows and is harvested throughout the year, may be used fresh as well as dried. The shepherd's purse is harvested in summer with the purpose of drying it out. It may be noted that the dried herb loses its remedial properties very quickly and, hence, it is advisable that you should not store this herb in excess of a year. Although shepherd's purse is extensively used as a home remedy to heal wounds, clinical experiments with the herb have not yes fully substantiated this use of the plant. It seems that the plant's effectiveness varies much from one batch to another, or maybe a white fungus that is frequently found on this plant encloses therapeutically active attributes. The uterine constriction properties of shepherd's purse have been proved and, hence, it has been traditionally employed all through child birth. In addition, shepherd's purse is also a traditional medication for treating life threatening disease like cancer. In fact, the herb encloses fumaric acid and laboratory tests on animals have proved that it has remarkably lessened the growth as well as capability of Ehrlich tumour in mice.

In addition to the above mentioned uses of shepherd's purse, it should be noted that the herb is also used to prepare a homeopathic remedy for urinary calculus (kidney stone) and nosebleeds.

Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Side effects


Shepherd's purse seems to be safe when taken by mouth or applied to the skin in small amounts. Shepherd's purse can cause drowsiness, changes in blood pressure, thyroid function changes, and heart palpitations.

An overdose of shepherd's purse might cause paralysis, breathing difficulty, and death.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Shepherd's purse is unsafe when taken by mouth or applied to the skin during pregnancy. Shepherd's purse might cause the uterus to contract or start menstruation, resulting in miscarriage. Not enough is known about the safety of using shepherd's purse during breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) Overview, Health Benefits, Side effects
Shepherd's Purse (Capsella Bursa-pastoris) flower


Heart conditions: Shepherd's purse might interfere with treatment for heart conditions. It’s best to avoid using shepherd's purse if you have a heart condition.

Kidney stones (nephrolithiasis): Shepherd's purse contains chemical compounds called oxalates, which can form kidney stones. If you have had kidney stones in the past, it’s best to avoid using shepherd's purse.

Surgery: Shepherd's purse can affect the central nervous system. There is a concern that it might slow down the central nervous system’s activity too much when combined with anesthesia and other medications used during and after surgery. Stop using shepherd's purse at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Thyroid conditions: Shepherd's purse might interfere with treatment for thyroid conditions. It’s best to avoid using shepherd's purse if you have a thyroid condition.