Asarum europaeum or Asarabacca, is a perennial flowering plant from the family Aristolochiaceae, which is found in most parts of Europe. It is a creeper with evergreen glossy, kidney shaped leaves and a single purple flower. It is usually cultivated for its roots which have an aroma like ginger and also grown in gardens for its evergreen leaves.The plant has a peppery taste and smell.
Common name: European Snake Root, European wild ginger, hazelwort, Wild spikenard, Asarabacca.
Parts used: Whole plant along with the roots.
Active principles:The plant and the root contain asarones,α-asarone and β-asarone, phenylpropanoids such as trans-isoasarone and trans-isoeugenol methyl ether and essential oils.
Homoeopathic preparation:A homoeopathic mother tincture is prepared from the roots and whole fresh plant.
Uses: It is used as a spice or a flavoring due to its aroma. Since a long time it was used in snuff and as a folk medicine for snake bites. Medically it was used as an emetic and cathartic. A vibrant apple-green dye is prepared from plant. It is also used to treat bronchitis, bronchial asthma, pneumonia, chest pain, migraines, liver disease, and dehydration. Women used it to induce menstrual periods and abortion.
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