Arnica, the small yellow flower originating from central Europe and Siberia, has been used for centuries by herbalists and homeopathic doctors because of its powerful health benefits and medicinal uses. Applied topically in the form of an oil, ointment or cream, arnica has anti-inflammatory and healing properties that can help with muscle and joint pain, sprains, wounds and burns. Arnica can also be consumed orally, but in very small doses and only if recommended by an expert, as it can be toxic – in baked goods, desserts and other foods it’s a perfect flavor- and health-boosting ingredient.
But that’s not all – arnica even has anticancer properties. With many antioxidant and bioactive compounds, arnica is excellent for anticancer prevention.
Relieves Muscle and Joint Pain
Arnica contains several compounds that can relieve muscle and joint pain. This is thanks to henalin, an anti-inflammatory compound which can not only reduce pain and swelling, but even treat serious ailments and conditions, including rheumatic diseases. The best way to use arnica in these cases is in the form of oil, during a massage.
Not only is arnica excellent for relieving muscle and joint pain, it’s good for reducing pain in general – no matter its cause and origin. This is at least partly thanks to thymol found in arnica, which is an anti-inflammatory phenol that helps boost blood and other fluid circulation. To reduce pain (sprains, bruises, muscle pain and even headache), massage a bit of arnica ointment, oil or cream onto affected areas.
Thanks to its powerful anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, arnica can help you get rid of acne and other skin disorders, such as eczema and rashes. Using arnica-based creams can reduce acne breakouts and improve the health of your skin. Additionally, using arnica on other non-open wounds such as bug and mosquito bites has calming and soothing effects.
Boosts Hair Growth
A regular scalp massage with arnica oil can not only boost hair growth and make your hair grow faster, but can actually help you fight hair loss – no matter your gender. Bot women and men can benefit greatly from regular arnica oil massage scalps, as it can encourage hair growth even in balding spaces, fight dandruff and condition the hair.
Relieves Cold Symptoms and Sore Throat
If consumed orally by non-experts, arnica can have toxic effects on the body. But if used carefully, arnica can greatly relieve cold symptoms, including respiratory problems, fever and sore throat. To use arnica to treat common cold symptoms, gargle the solution (syrup or even oil) mixed with water, swishing it around your mouth. You can even chew on an arnica plant a few times a day – just be careful not to swallow it.