- Rose hips
It seemed appropriate to choose an herb from the rose family, as Valentine’s Day approaches and rose has long been a symbolic plant for the heart and love.
Rose hips are the outer, fleshy portion of the seed pod (ovary) where the rose develops its seeds, at the base of where the spent rose flower.
The seeds are discarded (or perhaps are pressed to yield a delightful skin oil called rosehip seed oil) and the sweet, tart, mealy flesh can be eaten fresh, preserved in jams, jellies, honeys, and the like, or is dried, cut & sifted, and is used in teas around the world.
Its red/orange color give indication that it is high in antioxidant flavonoids, the most famous being vitamin C, of which rose hips are a rich source. Rose hips are antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and can help strengthen and tone arteries and veins, therefore becoming useful for preventing things such as easy bruising, varicose veins, and hemorrhoids. Due to their anti-inflammatory properties, rose hips are also used over a period of several months to help reduce symptoms of arthritis, such as pain and stiffness. Good results have been shown, particularly in a study in Denmark where patients consumed powdered rose hips for several months and felt less stiffness and pain in their joints.