The Universal Antiinfectious Activity of Marigold

Marigold (calendula) has been traditionally used for its anti-inflammatory properties, which are due mostly to the content of saponins. These, along with its antispastic and vulnerary qualities, make marigold an excellent remedy for the body’s pathologic reactions to external aggressions. But marigold, as has been proven by various scientific studies, also has a direct antiinfectious activity and fights not only microbes and viruses, but also parasites and fungi.

9 - Marigold

Scientific studies

  • Actimicrobial activity: A study on the antimicrobial activity of Calendula L. plants, published in Mikrobiolohichnyi Zhurnal in 2007, concluded that “Calendula species inhibited all tested pathogenic microorganisms, especially Pseudomonas syringae, P. fluorescens, Xanthomonas campestris, Agrobacterium tumefaciens.”
  • Antiviral activity: A study on the structure and in vitro antiviral activity of triterpenoid saponins (five oleanolic acid glycosides and the hydrolysis product of one of them) from Calendula arvensis, published in Planta Medica in 1991, concluded that “an inhibitory effect against vesicular stomatitis virus multiplication was observed for all the compounds tested”, while against the other virus involved, the rhinovirus, only one oleanolic acid glycoside seemed to have a significant antireplicative effect. A study published in Journal of Natural Products in 1990 had shown similar results. Moreover, the results of a study published in Biomedicine and Pharmacotherapy in 1997 suggest that “organic extract of flowers from Calendula officinalis possesses anti-HIV properties of therapeutic interest.”
  • Antiparasitic activity: A study on the antibacterial and antiparasitic activity of oleanolic acid and its glycosides isolated from marigold, published in Planta Medica in 2008 concluded that all of them “can be considered as potential therapeutic agents.”
  • Antifungal activity: A study published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice in 2012 showed that Calendula officinalis petal extracts has not only a good antibacterial activity, but also an “excellent antifungal activity against tested strains of fungi, while comparing with Fluconazole.”

Medicinal uses of marigold related to its antiinfectious activity

  • Antimicrobial activity: Blepharitis, conjunctivitis
  • Antiviral activity: Conjunctivitis, sore throats, ringworm, warts, HIV infection
  • Antiparasitic activity: Intestinal worms
  • Antifungal activity: Athlete’s foot, candidiasis

Preparation and administration

  • Infusion: Add 3-4 tablespoons of finely cut flowers in 500 ml of water and let them macerate for 8-10 hours. Sift and then add the flowers in another 500 ml of water and boil them for 5 minutes. Sift again and mix the two liquors. Drink 2-3 cups a day or use externally.
  • Tincture: Add 20 tablespoons of flowers in 500 ml alcohol 70% and let them macerate for 2 weeks in a warm place. Sift and store in dark coloured recipients. Take 1 teaspoon in a glass of water, 4 times a day.
  • Oil: Add 10 tablespoons of finely cut dried flowers in 500 ml of sunflower or olive oil and let them macerate under direct sunlight for 2 weeks. Sift and store in dark coloured recipients. Use externally.

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