The red clover plant is mainly found in regions like northwest Africa, western Asia and Europe. This perennial and herbaceous plant can grow up to 20 - 80 cm in height. Leaves are 15 - 30 mm long and their width ranges between 8 and 15 mm. Roots run deep into the soil. Many different nutrients are extracted by these plants from the soil. The red clover is therefore, rich in minerals. The following list of mineral and compounds present in it gives an idea about its richness; flavonoids, eugenol, coumarin, beta-sitosterol, methyl salicylate, salicylic acid, beta-carotene, molybdenum, zinc, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, iron, celenium, calcium and different vitamins (vitamin B, vitamin C and vitamin E). The botanical name is Trifolium pratense. There are many health benefits of red clover.
The red clover benefits mentioned below will help you in understanding the importance of this wonderful herb in day-to-day life.
- Red clover is a rich source of isoflavones. Functionality of these water-soluble chemicals is similar to that of estrogens.
- It can be used for different purposes like blood circulation improvement, lowering blood cholesterol and breast enhancement.
- Treatment of osteoporosis can be carried out with the help of red clover. It should be used with stinging nettle and horsetail for treating this medical condition.
- The occurrence of hot flashes during menopausal phase in women can be reduced with the help of red clover. The extracts of isoflavones obtained from the clover are used in this treatment.
- The extract benefits are far greater than just treating hot flashes. The loss of bones in menopausal stages can be reduced greatly with the use of such extracts. The bone mineral density too is increased.
- The isoflavones present in red clover carry out the displacement of natural estrogens. Symptoms like breast pain, which are associated with the PMS stage and caused by estrogens are thus, relieved.
- Red clover can be used as an expectorant. Resin content of these clovers helps treat the congestion in lungs caused by mucus. It is thus, useful in treatment of cough.
- Red clover is used in the treatment of cancer. The anti tumor compounds present in it act against cancerous growths.
- Topical medicines are prepared from red clover. These medicines are used to heal wounds and also in the treatment of psoriasis.
The uses of red clover mentioned below are more or less similar to the health benefits mentioned in the paragraphs above. However, those mentioned below are not associated with curing a particular disease.
- Red clover is used in agriculture for improving the quality of soil. Symbiotic relationship between nitrogen fixing bacteria and its roots lead to the transfer of nitrogen from air to the soil. Conversion of atmospheric nitrogen into the soil compounds is known as nitrogen fixation.
- The tea prepared from red clover leaves has been used in traditional herbal medicines for many years.
- Its leaves are a rich source of nutrients. Fresh leaves are used in making salads and soups. Even the flowers can be used in preparing these food items.