As a bioregional herbalist, I’ve always believed that nature provides us with an abundance of remedies for various ailments, many of which are right in our own backyards. One such treasure I’ve come to appreciate over the years is the New England Aster tea made from (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae), a native plant with a rich history of medicinal use. In this article, I’ll delve into the remarkable potential of New England Aster, both fresh and dried, in making a soothing tea that can provide relief for digestive issues.
New England Aster, also known as Michaelmas daisy, is a stunning wildflower that graces the landscapes of northeastern North America, particularly New England. Its vibrant purple blossoms not only add a burst of color to autumn fields but also possess a wealth of health benefits. Among its many traditional uses, New England Aster has been celebrated for its ability to soothe digestive discomfort.
Personally, I find New England Aster to be a true gem in my home apothecary. Every fall, I make it a point to gather some of these native plants to dry and store for various therapeutic purposes. Digestive relief is just one of the many ways this plant has proven its worth in my herbal arsenal.
Preparing New England Aster Tea:
To harness the digestive benefits of New England Aster, the first step is to harvest the plant. Look for mature, healthy specimens in late summer to early autumn, when the plant is in full bloom. Take care to collect only a small portion, leaving the majority of the plant intact to support local wildlife.
Once you have your New England Aster, you can either use its flowers and leaves fresh or dried for long-term storage. To dry the plant, bundle the stems and hang them in a cool, dry place with good air circulation. Once dried, store the leaves and flowers in an airtight container away from direct sunlight.
To make New England Aster tea, simply steep a tablespoon of fresh flowers and leaves, or a teaspoon if using dried aster flowers and leaves in a cup of hot water for about 10-15 minutes. The resulting infusion will have a delightful, slightly sweet aroma with earthy undertones.
The soothing properties of New England Aster tea can work wonders for digestive issues. Whether you’re dealing with indigestion, bloating, or general discomfort, sipping on a cup of this herbal elixir can offer much-needed relief. It’s gentle on the stomach, making it an excellent choice for those with sensitive digestive systems.
The secret behind New England Aster’s digestive benefits lies in its natural compounds. This native plant contains antioxidants, anti-inflammatory compounds, and volatile oils that can help ease gastrointestinal distress. It can relax the smooth muscles of the digestive tract, reducing spasms and discomfort.
I’ve found that drinking a cup of New England Aster tea after a heavy meal can help alleviate that post-feast bloated feeling. It aids in digestion by promoting the flow of digestive juices and reducing the buildup of gas. It’s a natural way to encourage a calm and comfortable digestive process.
My Personal Experience:
As someone who enjoys exploring the world of herbal remedies, New England Aster has earned a permanent place in my home apothecary. The ritual of harvesting and drying this native plant each fall is a reminder of the profound connection between nature and healing.
I’ve turned to New England Aster tea time and time again for digestive relief, and it has yet to disappoint. Its mild, earthy flavor is pleasant on the palate, making it an enjoyable addition to my herbal tea rotation. Knowing that I’ve gathered and prepared this remedy myself adds a sense of satisfaction and connection to the natural world.
In my opinion, New England Aster is a versatile and underappreciated native plant with incredible potential for promoting digestive health. Whether you use it fresh or dried, this herbal remedy can provide relief from a range of digestive issues, all while connecting you to the beauty and healing power of the natural world. I wholeheartedly recommend adding New England Aster tea to your herbal toolkit and making it a part of your home apothecary.
- Foster, S., & Duke, J. A. (1990). A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants: Eastern and Central North America. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
- Hoffmann, D. (2003). Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine. Healing Arts Press.
- Winslow, S. R. (January 2015 ). PLANT MATERIALS TECHNICAL NOTE: NEW ENGLAND ASTER Symphyotrichum novae-angliae (L.) Nelson.
NRCS Plant Materials Center, Bridger, Montana : United States Department of
Agriculture NATURAL RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE.
Disclaimer- I am not a medical professional. All information shared here is for information and entertainment only. Do your own research and consult your health care provider before treating yourself with any product, plant or mixture.