Few things in life are more delightful than discovering the goodness in something (or someone!) that the general population discards without a second thought.
Right now, in my part of the world, sweet corn season has reached its peak. If you’ve ever shucked a lot of corn, you’ll recall how pesky it is trying to get the silk off of the cob. You’ve probably even muttered some not-so-nice things about it, in the process. (I know I have!)
Well, today, we’re going to talk about a few of the wonderful benefits that corn silk has and why we should view it more as a blessing than a curse.
Corn Silk can be used to help alleviate symptoms that go along with the following conditions: bedwetting, cystitis, prostatitis, urinary tract infections, kidney stones, gout and hyperglycemia. (More details on those below.) It’s also a natural source of vitamin K and potassium.
To harvest your corn silk: Simply pull the golden-green strands off of the ears, when shucking your corn, and spread them out on a plate or paper towel to dry. Corn silk is best used fresh, or as a second best option – freshly dried.
Make sure you use homegrown or organic corn. The silk on conventional corn from the supermarket is likely loaded with pesticides that would be counterintuitive to our goal of increased health.
To make a tea: Use about 1 tablespoon of chopped corn silk per cup of almost boiling water. Cover and let this steep for fifteen to twenty minutes or until cool enough to drink. Strain. Sweeten with raw honey to taste, if you wish. You can store leftovers in the refrigerator for two to three days. Doses vary depending on your body weight and condition, but a general recommendation for adults is up to 1 cup of tea, two to three times during the day – avoiding the hours right before bedtime. Reduce doses for children accordingly.
To make an alcohol tincture: Fill a small jar about 1/4 full of fresh, chopped corn silk. Fill the rest of the jar with a high proof alcohol such as vodka. Cap and let this infuse in a cool, dark place for four to six weeks, shaking occasionally. Strain and dose around 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon, several times a day; reduce amount for smaller children. (Mix with a spoonful of raw honey for higher patient compliance & tastiness!) Shelf life of this is well over a year.
(You can also buy ready made tincture HERE from Mountain Rose Herbs.) (<- This post contains affiliate links like that one. If you click on one and make a purchase, I earn a small commission for sending a customer their way. This doesn’t cost you anything extra, but does help to support my website and let’s me keep doing what I do. Thank you!)
To make a glycerine tincture/glycerite: Another way to preserve your fresh corn silk, is to use vegetable glycerine to make a tincture, instead of vodka. (You can buy pure, organic vegetable glycerine HERE from Mountain Rose Herbs.) Glycerites are more suitable for children, pets and those who wish to avoid alcohol. Using roughly two to three times the amount of glycerine than fresh corn silk, blend the two in a mini-food process (like THIS ONE) until thoroughly macerated. Pour into a jar, cap and store in a cool dark place, shaking daily. After two weeks, remove and strain your glycerite through a fine mesh sieve and/or several layers of cheesecloth. A suggested starting dose is 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon, several times a day. (Reduce for smaller children.) Shelf life is about a year.
Corn Silk & Pets: Corn Silk can be used to treat many pets. The tea made with fresh silk works best, especially if you are targeting the urinary tract, but a glycerite can be helpful too. (Suggested tea dose: about 1/4 cup of tea per 20 lbs of body weight, twice per day. Glycerite dose: 1/4 teaspoon per 20 lbs, twice per day.) Not recommended for pregnant animals. Check with a qualified vet for further guidance on your pet’s particular situation.
If you have an allergy to corn or are taking a prescription diuretic, don’t take corn silk. If you have other medical conditions, are pregnant or nursing, have severe pollen or other allergies, or any general concerns, it’s a good idea to check with a qualified professional before use.While this site does its best to provide useful information, any reliance you place on such information is strictly at your own risk and not a substitute for medical, legal, or any other professional advice of any kind.
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