Last Updated on 11/04/2020 by Desmond
Have you seen some orange balls bloom in the gardens? These lovely balls are marigold flowers, which originated in South America. It is said these plants can help protect the garden from pests, plus its beautiful appearance makes it accessible in many gardens. And in some folk remedies, people also use it to make marigold tea or ointment, to for adjuvant disease therapy, even to cure some baby’s discomfort. In modern times, marigold also took as the main component in some makeups, perfume, and dye.
There is a legend about the name marigold, it is said that Mother Mary regard this flower as money, so the early Christian put them on her feet as gold. Even it is just a story, but marigold is still famous around the world with its beauty and got many meanings. In the East, people call it longevity flower and love it much.
Difference Between Marigold And Calendula
Marigold got many types, and people usually confused with them. The most common case is marigold and calendula.
The marigold’s scientific name is Tagetes erecta L, and to calendula is Calendula officinalis; they got a similar look, but not in the same genus. Most of the time, people prefer to call calendula as a marigold. That also right, but if you take a look at them carefully and you will find the difference.
The shape of the marigold flower close to a ball, the whole plant is high 25-100cm, and with serrated leaves. Calendula plants usually high 25-75cm, the flower looks like a clock, and with oval leaves. Typically, the diameter of the marigold flower is much bigger than the calendula.
Is Marigold Edible?
Some people thought that the marigold is not for edible. I can not negate these views totally, because there are so many types of marigolds, hard to make a definitive conclusion. But in many countries, marigold is not only used to make herbal tea but also took as a seasoner. In Chinese cuisine, there is a dish even made from fried marigold.
Maybe due to some types of marigolds with a bad smell, so people thought it could not be eaten. But there have been no confirmed cases of marigold being not safe for edible so far.
What Is Marigold Tea Good For
Marigold tea is a kind of herbal tea without caffeine but many beneficial ingredients inside, such as the antioxidant flavonoid. In the past, even though people do not know the chemical principle of it, but they still can feel the benefits that marigold brings from daily life. Therefore, there are many uses of marigold in folk remedies.
Excessive amounts of radicals in the body can lead to oxidative stress, which is responsible for most diseases. A study suggested that marigold is rich in antioxidants such as carotenoid, laricitrin(a kind of flavonoid), and glycoside. All of these ingredients can help remove the radicals, and brings the following benefits:
- Treating inflammation in the body;
- Delay the vascular aging;
- Potential cancer-preventing effect;
Studies suggested that they found antibiosis ingredients in the marigold extract, which helps kill microorganisms such as bacteria, and fungus. Folks consuming marigold tea for cure colds, fever, respiratory tract infection, and gastrointestinal discomfort; most of them are caused by infecting the Escherichia coli, Salmonella typhi, or Staphylococcus aureus.
Besides, in some South American countries, people use the marigold infusion for washing genitals, for curing the disease caused by Candida Albicans. With the antioxidant property of it, having marigold tea or use it to rinse the mouth, can improve oral health, and solve the ozostomia problem.
To keep the eyes healthy is the most common use of marigold. A carotenoid called lutein contained in marigold is a powerful antioxidant, the human body can not synthesize it. When you lack the lutein, it may lead to macular degeneration, and blurred vision, severe case, your vision may deteriorate and got shortsightedness.
Even though the lutein is not regarded as a necessary nutrition of the body. But the studies suggested it play a great help in keeping heath vision and prevention of eye diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration(ARMD) and cataracts. Adequate intake of carotenoids also helps reduce the risk of bowel cancer and heart disease.
Marigold extract is the main component of much essential oil and skincare products. In the folk, people smear the marigold infusion on the skin for curing the trauma such as wound and burn, or the skin disease such as ulceration, eczema, and acne. The benefits may come from its anti-inflammation and antibiosis property. But it seems not to take a good effect by consuming marigold tea.
Marigold Tea Side Effect
Marigold tea is considered safe by the FDA. Still, people who are allergic to the Compositae family should pay attention to it. It’s best to smear a little on your hand or ask your doctor before having marigold tea.
Besides, in some South American countries, women have a habit of managing menstrual blood volume by having marigold tea. Although this benefit hasn’t be confirmed, pregnant women should not take it during pregnancy to avoid miscarriage or other serious consequences.
How To Make Marigold Tea
If there are marigolds in your garden, that will be simple to DIY marigold tea. Of course, you can buy it from the florist, but be sure they not been contaminated with pesticides.
- First, pick the fresh marigold flower and clean them up at all. Do as gentle as you can and don’t let the petals break;
- Spread and place the flower after clean in a cool and ventilated for drying. Avoid direct sunlight, or it will make the marigold lost its flavor and nutrition. Usually, it will cost more than 3 days for drying;
- The flowers after drying are ready for making marigold tea, but first, you should store them well;
- Take 1-2 dried marigold flowers, put them into the cup, add 50℃ warm water, steep for 10s then pour the infusion out. This is for washing the dust off they got during drying;
- Add 85℃ hot water in again, steep for 3-5 mins, then serving;
Marigold tea shows a beautiful golden color, and send out chrysanthemum like scent. But in fact, it tastes light, and a little bitter. So you can add some honey or sugar for flavoring, or blended with other herbals, such as chamomile or mint, to make a better taste.
Tagetes spp. Essential Oils and Other Extracts: Chemical Characterization and Biological Activity
Edible Flowers of Tagetes erecta L. as Functional Ingredients: Phenolic Composition, Antioxidant and Protective Effects on Caenorhabditis elegans
Modulatory Effect of Carotenoid Supplement Constituting Lutein and Zeaxanthin (10:1) on Anti-oxidant Enzymes and Macular Pigments Level in Rats
Can I just use the leaves off the plant to make the tea? It smells wonderful when I tried it at home but I am wondering if it is safe to consume the tea made with leaves.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, both Tagetes and Calendulas’ leaves can be served as medicine, fresh or dried. It was ever popular in Guangxi folk, great help on inflammation. Local people primarily get rid of the toothache with it. But they making the marigold leaves tea in a cooking way, into a soup.