Eyebright herb is an astringent has been historically used since medieval times as an eye lotion, a specific remedy for tired, inflamed & watering eyes pain. The name Euphrasia is of Greek origin, derived from Euphrosyne, Gladness, one of the three graces who was distinguished for her joy and mirth and gaiety. The gladness evidently results from the relief from the sufferer who has his sight restored and his sore eyes healed.
The bitter leaves are used in salads. An infusion of the whole plant or strained juice from the fresh, crushed stems is a general eye tonic.
Origin(s): Bulgaria, Croatia, Poland, United States.
Latin Name(s): Euphrasia officinalis
Also known as: Eyewort, Euphrasia Rostkoviana.
Plant Part(s) Used: Whole plant.
Appearance: Greenish-brown to gray.
GMO Status: Non-GMO.
Additives: Free of any additives or preservatives.
Applications / Preparations: Can be put into capsules, teas or infused as an herbal extract. For cosmetic use can be put in poultices.
Storage: Store in a sealed container in a cool, dry place.
Shelf Life: It is very difficult to pin down an exact expiration date for most single herbs as they do not really expire, they lose potency or strength over time but will still have value. Unlike synthetic material or drugs, herbs can contain many constituents that contribute to their medicinal effects. Even if when we know what the active constituents are, there are often many of them in a single herb, each with different rates of degradation. Some herbs lose their effect more easily. Other herbs that possess more stable compounds such as alkaloids or steroids will last much longer.
A huge part of the degradation rate of herbs depends also on the storage conditions of the herb, & even on the quality of the herb before storage – how it was grown, harvested, dried & processed. If the product is left in hot places or open to sunlight then it will degrade much quicker than if it was stored in cool, dry place & sealed tightly.
A good rule of thumb is that herbs should be stored no longer than 2-3 years but many herbs will have great strength much longer than that. To determine if a an herb is still good you can check the appearance & aroma. Herbs that are no longer acceptable will have lost much of its vibrant color & will instead appear dull & faded. The bigger key though is to smell the raw materials to see if the potent aroma is still present.