LindenTilia cordata, Tilia platyphyllos, and other Tilia spp.
Linden flowers have a pleasant, tangy taste, and for this reason the tree is sometimes called “lime flower.” Besides use in beverages and liqueurs, linden flower has a long history of medicinal use for such conditions as colds and flus, digestive distress, anxiety, migraine headaches, and insomnia. The wood of the linden tree has been used for liver problems, kidney stones, and gout.
What is Linden Used for Today?
Linden flower has been approved by Germany’s Commission E
Other proposed uses of linden also lack scientific support. Two exceedingly preliminary studies that evaluated linden flower for potential
Other proposed benefits of linden that lack any meaningful supporting evidence include the claims that linden flower reduces
Linden flower is usually taken at a dose of 2–4 grams daily, often as tea. A daily dose of linden wood is prepared by boiling 15–40 grams in water for several hours.
Linden is widely believed to be a safe herb, but it has not undergone comprehensive safety testing. Numerous texts state that when taken in high doses linden can be toxic to the heart, but this appears to have been a case of authors quoting one another for decades in succession; the original source of this concern is unclear. Safety in young children, pregnant or nursing women, or people with severe liver or kidney disease has not been established.
1. Blumenthal M, Busse WR, Goldberg A, et al. (eds). The Complete German Commission E Monographs: Therapeutic Guide to Herbal Medicines . Austin, Texas: American Botanical Council and Boston: Integrative Medicine Communications, 1998:163.
3. Coleta M, Campos MG, Cotrim MD, et al. Comparative evaluation of Melissa officinalis L., Tilia europaea L., Passiflora edulis Sims. and Hypericum perforatum L. in the elevated plus maze anxiety test. Pharmacopsychiatry . 2001;34(suppl 1):S20–1.
7. Matsuda H, Ninomiya K, Shimoda H, et al. Hepatoprotective principles from the flowers of Tilia argentea (linden): structure requirements of tiliroside and mechanisms of action. Bioorg Med Chem . 2002;10:707–12.
Last reviewed April 2009 by EBSCO CAM Review Board
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