Alfalfa (Medicago sativa)
Alfalfa has been used by the Chinese since the sixth century to treat kidney
stones, and to relieve fluid retention and swelling. It is a perennial herb that
grows throughout the world in a variety of climates. Alfalfa grows to about 3
feet and has blue- violet flowers that bloom from July to September.
First discovered by the Arabs, they dubbed this valuable plant the "father of all
foods". They fed alfalfa to their horses claiming it made the animals swift and
strong. The leaves of the alfalfa plant are rich in minerals and nutrients,
including calcium, magnesium, potassium, and carotene (useful against both
heart disease and cancer). Leaf tablets are also rich in protein, vitamins E and
K. Alfalfa extract is used by food makers as a source of chlorophyll and
The leaves of this remarkable legume contain eight essential amino acids.
Alfalfa is a good laxative and a natural diuretic. It is useful in the treatment of
urinary tract infections, and kidney, bladder and prostrate disorders. Alkalizes
and detoxifies the body, especially the liver. Promotes pituitary gland function
and contains an anti-fungus agent.
Part Used: Whole herb and leaf.
Common use: This versatile herb is also a folk remedy for arthritis, diabetes,
asthma, hay fever, and is reputed to be an excellent appetite stimulant and
overall tonic. Excellent source of nutritive properties with minerals, chlorophyll
and vitamins. Alfalfa is high in chlorophyll and nutrients. Treating with alfalfa
preparations is generally without side effects, however the seeds contain a
slightly toxic amino acid L-canavanine.