Wintergreen(redirected from Gaultheria procumbens)
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Related to Gaultheria procumbens: Arctostaphylos uva-ursi
Fringe medicine Wintergreen oil is believed to be useful by aromatherapists for the common cold, headaches, and chronic pain
Herbal medicine Gaultheria procumbens, boxberry, checkerberry, creeping wintergreen, mountain tea, partridgeberry, teaberry An evergreen shrub, up to 99% methyl salicylate by weight. It was traditionally used as an analgesic, astringent, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, stimulant, and tonic. It has been used as a folk remedy against colic, headaches, body aches and pains, inflammations, rheumatism, sore throats, skin diseases, and tooth decay for muscle
Toxicity Because of its high concentration of methyl salicylate, wintergreen oil is too toxic for practical use and should not be ingested internally
Pharmacology The wintergreen now used as an artificial flavour in a vast array of products—from chewing gum, mints and candies to smokeless tobacco—comes from young twigs and bark of the sweet or black birch tree, Betula lenta of the Betulaceae family
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