Passion Flower Facts
Indigenous tribes throughout the rainforest use the passion flower for its sedative and pain relieving properties. The fruit is used to calm coughs and to heal ailments of the heart. The yellow, gelatinous pulp inside the fruit is eaten out of hand, as well as mixed with water and sugar to make drinks, sherbet, jams and jellies, and even salad dressings.
The passion flower is currently used in herbal medicine as a sedative, antispasmodic and nerve tonic. It's reported that the flower can alleviate headaches, bruises and general pain by applying the bruised leaves topically to the affected area. Used as a tea, the flower is purported to help ease colic, diarrhea, dysentery, menstrual difficulties, insomnia, neuralgia, eye disorders, epilepsy and convulsions, and muscle spasms and pain. Interestingly, in South America the fruit juice is also used as a natural remedy to calm hyperactive children. Most recently, scientists have found that the flower helps with anxiety and fertility.
Passion Flower and Anxiety
The anti-anxiety and hypotensive actions of passion flower leaves were clinically validated in the early 1980's. Extracts of the flower were able to tranquilize animals effectively.
Passion Flower and Fertility
Although the passion flower has been studied scientifically for over 100 years, new research seems to continually unveil new benefits. Most recently, scientists have found that passion flower is an effective aphrodisiac. A passion flower leaf extract was reported to improve overall sexual function, increase sperm count and fertilization potential.
Is it Safe?
Although it may seem like the passion flower is something of a "cure-all," modern science has affirmed most of the claims about the flower made by traditional herbalists. It's also important to remember that the passion flower does not completely cure the said dysfunctions or symptoms, but rather helps to alleviate them.