Monday, September 10, 2007

Hops

Hop
6 x 6 coloured pencil and pen & ink
copyright Jeanette Jobson


This is the first of a little botanical exercise I'm embarking on that serves two purposes. One, it give me practice drawing botanical plants, which is my weak point and two, it focuses my mind on my medicinal herbs, reinforcing their merits and uses to ensure that they don't become less important in my world.

These are baby hops which are literally covering the fence from the dining room window, stretching out towards the arbour at the rear of the house. I grew them from seed 3 or 4 years ago and the three plants that remain luckily were two female and one male so I get 'fruit' from them.

These hops are the same ones that give flavour to beer, but are also a mild relaxant, used to enhance sleep and calm nerves. It is one of the 'bitters' which aid digestion by increasing saliva and bile.

Applications: Antispasmodic/Soporific/Sedative

Hops are primarily used to reduce tension and aid in sleep.

Sleep Aid: As a sleep aid, hops can be used in a sachet inside of a pillow. The aromatic properties of the herb will help one to fall asleep.

Tension: Hops can be taken to help relax the muscles and soothe anxiety.

Digestive Aid: Hops can help to relax spasms of the digestive system and aid in digestion.

An exerpt from Wikipedia on the use of hops.

Hops have long-established and well-studied medicinal properties and uses, although new uses and properties are also being explored. Two of the many medically active ingredients in Hops are humulene and lupuline.

Dried female buds have a high methylbutenol content, which has a mild sedativecentral nervous system; it is used in the treatment for insomnia, stress and anxiety. If one has trouble getting sleep, hop tea before going to bed may help, though a quantity of beer has similar results. effect on the

Hops' antibacterial qualities also stimulate gastric juice production.

Hops have been studied for anti-viral properties and antimycobacterial properties]. They also contain numerous various flavonoids, and they have been studied for containing Estrogen precursors as well.

2 comments:

Dave said...

I think I'll stick to taking my hops in beer! Lovely drawing...no sign of this type of drawing being a weak point!

Jeanette said...

I think its more the alcohol than the hops in beer that's the sedative :)