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Damiana

Botanical: Turnera aphrodisiaca (WILLD.)
Family: N.O. Turneraceae

---Part Used---Leaves.
---Habitat---Mexico, South Arnerica, Texas, West Indies.


---Description---A small shrub; leaves smooth and pale green on upper side, underneath glabrous, with a few hairs on the ribs, ovolanceolate, shortly petiolate with two small glands at base; flowers yellow, rising singly from axils of the leaves, capsule one-celled splitting into three pieces; smell aromatic, taste characteristic, bitterish, aromatic and resinous.

---Constituents---A greenish volatile oil, smelling like chamomile, amorhpous bitter principle Damianin, resins and tannin.

---Medicinal Action and Uses---Mild purgative, diuretic, tonic, acting directly on the reproductive organs, stimulant, hypochondriastic, aphrodisiae.

---Preparations---Fluid extract, 1/2 to 1 drachm. Solid extract, 5 to 10 grains. Often combined with Nux Vomica, Phosphorus, etc.

---Other Species---
Turnera opifera leaves are used as an infusion and given as an astringent and tonic by the natives of Brazil, also T. ulmifolia for its tonic and expectorant properties.

Aplopappus discoideus was formerly sold as Damiana, but can easily be detected, as the leaves are distinctly lanceolate, with only two or three teeth on either side.

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Bear in mind "A Modern Herbal" was written with the conventional wisdom of the early 1900's. This should be taken into account as some of the information may now be considered inaccurate, or not in accordance with modern medicine.

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