The unicorn is an old medicinal plant that has a very unusual appearance. That's why they used to be said to have magical powers. The plant was planted in front of the house and should protect its inhabitants from evil spirits. In the Middle Ages, people promised themselves their protection against the plague. The narcotic effect of the medicinal plant was already known to the famous physician Paracelsus (16th century).

Occurrence & cultivation of the unicorn

The unicorn bears an approximately one-centimeter large, roundish purple-black berry, which tastes slightly sweet. This berry looks deceptively similar to the blueberry. The unicorn - botanical Paris quadrifolia - belongs to the plant family of the lily family ( Liliaceae ) and is related to the lily of the valley. The plant has four ovate and lanceolate leaves clustered around the long stem of the plant like a whorl. The ganzrandigen leaves are veined like a net. In the middle, in the flowering period in May / June, a single, filigree yellow-green flower can be seen terminally.

She later wears a roundish purple-black berry, about one centimeter in size, which tastes slightly sweetish. The perennial herbaceous plant, which is also called fox eye, devil's eye, four-leaf and wolfberry, reached in the spring of a height of 20 to 30 centimeters and expels from a horizontally extending rhizome. The unicorn occurs in Europe and in West Asia. It loves shady and semi-shady locations as well as nutrient rich and humus rich moist soil.

They are best found in open floodplains, conifers, oaks and beech forests. In the Alps it occurs up to an altitude of 1900 meters. Since their berry looks deceptively similar to the blueberry, it can sometimes be confused.

Effect & application

Of the single berry is usually used only during the flowering time in May / June collected and then dried herb. It contains pectin, asparagine, saponins - slightly toxic substances that protect the plant against its natural enemies - organic acids, the glycosides paridine and paristyphnin, and pennogenin. Because of its high content of saponins, the old medicinal herb is toxic when dosed too high: it damages the central nervous system, kidneys and red blood cells.

In very low concentrations or heavily diluted, however, the unicorn is used in natural medicine and homeopathy for various diseases. Traditional medicine no longer uses it because it considers its application too risky. The fresh herb is processed into homeopathic remedies of dose D3 to D6. The dried herb can be used by the patient as a medicine and tincture internally and externally. It is, for example, dripped onto envelopes, which are then wrapped around swelling and inflamed areas of the body.

The antiseptic properties of the ancient herb bring about rapid healing of ulcers and inflamed eyes. It is also used as an additive in medical baths. In the form of tablets (Teep) the fresh plant trituration is taken 3 times a day. It contains 0.0025 grams of unicorn. Patients who want to use the long-known medicinal plant should, however, be sure to consume only the smallest amounts of it and always keep the recommended maximum dose, since it has no side effects only then.

The consumption of a single berry can cause even slight symptoms of intoxication: the user vomits, has diarrhea, headache and dizziness. To prevent this, he spits out the best all the mouth content and drinks a lot of water. At extremely high dose levels (for example, the ingestion of several berries), death from respiratory paralysis may occur.

Importance for Health, Treatment & Prevention

If the patient ingests the dried and crushed herb of the unicorn as medicinal tea, he can effectively eliminate migraine, nervous heart complaints and nerve pain especially of the head area. In addition, Einbeeren tea helps against various inflammations and spasmodic coughing up in bronchitis. The tincture can also be used against these complaints. Also, it may only be consumed in very diluted form to avoid poisoning.

The paridin contained in the herb of the unicorn has a digitalis-like effect, as it strengthens the heart. The glycoside paristyphnin has a strong narcotic effect. Naturopathy rates single-herb preparations in low doses because it can be used to relieve eye pain, neuralgia, headaches and migraine associated with vomiting bile.

Main active ingredients are essentially the analgesic and anti-inflammatory glycosides and saponins. In addition, the patient with single-berry preparations can treat nervous heart complaints, angina (due to paridin), rheumatism and nasal and catarrh of the ears. Inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract is cured with the same as with milk-fever, dizziness, insomnia and the absence of menstruation.

From the juice of the fresh strawberry leaves and their seeds, the patient can prepare an ointment which he applies to ulcers and poorly healing wounds. After a short while he feels an improvement of his condition. With the tincture extracted from the herb, it releases dangerous arsenic and mercury. However, this medical effect of the unicorn could not yet be proven by clinical studies.

For homeopathic use the unicorn is diluted as cold water and used as an alcohol extract. In the potencies D3 to D6 it helps against nerve pain, eye irritation caused by colds, cataracts, airway inflammation, nervous restlessness, migraine, heart problems and respiratory diseases. The homeopathic medicine can also be used against any kind of inflammation.