Whilst the scientific research regarding Eyebright’s effectiveness is scant, a small study published in the “Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine” in 2000 found that Eyebright showed promise in the treatment of inflammation related eye disorders.
There are certain phytonutrients present in this herb that can reduce the symptoms of eye discomfort. The aucubin found in Eyebright has an anti-inflammatory action, soothing tired and inflamed eyes, whilst tannins act as astringents to help dry up secretions and relieve inflammation of the mucous membranes. This is especially helpful when dealing with conjunctivitis or blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelids).
The flavonoid quercetin, also found in Eyebright, can benefit symptoms of hayfever (especially runny eyes). This phytonutrient is thought to reduce allergic responsiveness by inhibiting the release of histamines.
Eyebright is also effective against styes (inflammation of one or more of the sebaceous glands in the eyelid). It contains caffeic acid whose antiseptic action will work to combat the infection.
It is thought that the antioxidant properties of this herb can help the eye absorb more vitamin A and vitamin C, and it contains the minerals; zinc, copper and selenium which all help to protect against cataracts.
Working against allergies, colds, sinusitis and general respiratory discomfort, Eyebright contains naturally astringent tannins that can help to reduce catarrh and mucus discharge. It is thought that these tannins work by tightening the mucous membranes, whilst the flavonoids found in this herb can provide relief from seasonal allergies, coughs, colds and chest congestion.
What we love about eyebright is its ability to calm and soothe the feeling of your skin around your eye area. It’s the perfect ingredient in formulas that aim to make eyes look more awake and youthful.
Reduce the appearance of puffiness: You can make eyebright tea, then drain the leaves, allow it to cool, and place on the eyes with a soft cloth or cotton pads, leaving for 10-15 minutes.
For oily skin and clogged pores: Eyebright helps to protect the skin around the eyes by unclogging pores.
Cleansing: Eyebright can tighten the skin, making it appear smoother and flawless. This is great for the under eye area, and also works well over the rest of the face, particularly on the nose and chin where pores tend to appear larger.
Antioxidants: Like most plant products, eyebright contains antioxidants in the form of flavonoids that protect the skin from environmental stressors. Over time, this action helps reduce appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Native to Europe, Eyebright has small, scallop-edged white flowers with yellow spots and a black centre, somewhat resembling a bloodshot human eye. Historically, Eyebright's use for eye problems was due to the Doctrine of Signatures, a sixteenth-century theory that held that a plant's appearance indicated the conditions it could treat.
Eyebright has been traditionally used to treat all manner of eye maladies including; inflammation, conjunctivitis, red-eye, styes, itchy eyes, stinging eyes and weak vision.
In the Middle Ages dried Eyebright was often combined with tobacco and smoked to provide relief for bronchial colds. During the Elizabethan era it was used to make Eyebright Ale which was used to clear eyesight (as long as one didn't drink too much!).
FDA Disclaimer: These statements and products have not been evaluated by the FDA. They are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or condition. If you have a health concern or condition, consult a physician. Always consult a medical doctor before modifying your diet, using any new product, drug, supplement, or doing any new exercises.
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