Rosa Canina Flowers As a Treatment for Anxiety

Rosa canina is a flowering plant that belongs to the Rosaceae family. Common names for the plant include dog rose, rose hip or briar rose. The flowers on the plant are fragrant white or pink, and the plant produces fruits that are high in vitamin C. The flowers may possess anxiolytic effects and this has been investigated using animal models. Oral extracts of Rosa canina were administered to rats and the rats were then exposed to experimental stress. The results of the study showed that the plant extracts significantly reduced the anxious behaviour displayed by the rats. Evidence suggests that the flowers may have mood elevating effects because they contain high amounts of polyphenol antioxidants, particularly of the flavonoid class. These phytochemicals may have anti-inflammatory effects that improves brain function and protects neurones from the effects of stress. Rosa canina flowers may therefore have mood elevating effects that relate to the phytochemicals they contain. 

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The petals of flowering plant often contain flavonoids, particularly of the anthocyanin subgroup. Anthocyanins are often responsible for the pink and purple colours of flowers.

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Nemati, Z., Komaki, A., Shahidi, S. and Sarihi, A. 2015. Effect of a hydroalcoholic extract of Rosa Canina flowers on anxiety in rats. Neurophysiology. 47(2): 133-137

About Robert Barrington

Robert Barrington is a writer, nutritionist, lecturer and philosopher.
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