Lobelia - Stroiczka Rozdęta

Lobelia - Stroiczka Rozdęta

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Lobelia

Named after Matthias de Lobel, a 17th century botanist, Lobelia is known as Indian Tobacco because it contains lobeline. Lobeline is believed to have a chemical make up similar to nicotine and was therefore used as an alternative to tobacco. In the 19th century, Lobelia was also used as a medicinal herb to induce vomiting, thus removing harmful poisons from the body.  In the past, it was also useful for tobacco withdrawal as an herbal remedy to quit smoking.

The name Indian Tobacco was assigned because the Aboriginal people smoked dried leaves of the plant. Historically, the Aboriginal people were very creative and efficient in using the Lobelia plant for medicinal purposes. The Iroquois used the root to treat leg sores, venereal diseases and ulcers. The Cherokees used a poultice of the root for body aches. They also used the plant for boils, sores, bites and stings. Considered a plant to cure asthma, phthisic (lung disease), croup and a sore throat, it was also used to discourage the presence of gnats. The Crows made use of it in religious ceremonies. Lobelia inflata is an herb that is used to treat asthma, allergies, whooping cough, congestion, and bronchitis.

 It is found in the southeastern part of Canada from Nova Scotia to Southeast Ontario and British Columbia. It is also present in the eastern half of the United States (excluding the state of Florida).