phytochemicals Phytochemicals
 
 

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Cornsilk

Cornsilk

Zea mays

What is cornsilk?

Corn is a grass which can grow up to 3 meter. Corn forms thick stems with long leaves. The flowers of corn are monoecious: each corn plant forms male and female flowers. The male flowers form the tassel at the top and produce yellow pollen. The female flowers are situated in leave axils and form stigmas or corn silk (yellow soft threads). The purpose of the cornsilk is to catch the pollen. The cornsilk is normally light green but can have other colours such as yellow, yellow or light brown.

Parts used

Only cornsilk (styles and stigmas) is harvested for medicinal properties. Cornsilk should be harvested just before pollination occurs. Cornsilk can be used fresh or dried. The corn kernels (or corn) are a well known food.

Phytochemicals

These are typical phytochemicals found in cornsilk: maysin, carvacrol, flavonoids, polyphenols.

Benefits of cornsilk

Cornsilk has detoxifying, relaxing and diuretic activity. Cornsilk is used to treat infections of the urinary and genital system, such as cystitis, prostatitis and urethritis. Cornsilk helps to reduce frequent urination caused by irritation of the bladder and is used to treat bed wetting problems.

In China, cornsilk is traditionally used to treat oedema and jaundice. Studies indicate that cornsilk can reduces blood clotting time and reduce high blood pressure.

Other facts

Corn originates from Central America but is cultivated in many countries as a food crop and as fodder. In countries with colder climate the whole corn plant is used a cattle feed.

Other names

Maize, mais



 
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