Main components of tarragon
Tarragon is an herb that is used in food as a condiment. (See tarragon as a spice in the listing above).
- The fresh tarragon is an excellent source of vitamin C, having a higher content in fresh shoots. Formerly used as antiscorbutic plant.
- Salicylic acid: tarragon leaves have very high amounts of salicylic acid, which has analgesic, anti-inflammatory and febrifuge properties. Tarragon is one of the richest plant sources, after licorice and peanuts.
- Chlorogenic acid and caffeic acid: with anticancer function, and particularly it has been found that are able to combat carcinogenic nitrosamines (for example, those formed by eating food with nitrites and nitrates).
- Gentisic acid: substance with antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antioxidant effects. Tarragon is the richest natural source of this substance.
- Anisic acid: antiseptic and antirheumatic. It has been found to be effective against salmonella. The tarragon shoots are the most important natural source.
- Estragole or methyl chavicol (68-80%) is an isomer of anethole, with analgesic and antiseptic values. It is found in large quantities in young shoots of tarragon.
- Cis and trans ocimene (12%): pleasant smell monoterpenes used in perfumery. They are found in the essential oil of many plants (celery, lemon balm, wild celery and oregano), among which is also the tarragon. This substance is a natural insecticide plant with antiseptic properties.
- Coumarins: umbelliferone, scopoletin, scoparone, scoparin, herniarin (hydroxycoumarin). Antiseptic, antispasmodic and cholagogue. At the root of tarragon the concentration in coumarins is greater than in leaves
- Thujone: other monoterpene with slight aroma reminiscent of menthol. It has abortifacient properties and emmenagogue effects.
- Nerol: after lemon, tarragon is the most important source of nerol. This component (a monoterpene) is related to the treatment of gastritis (it fights H. pylori bacteria). Sabinene is another monoterpene with the same properties for the stomach.
- Elemicine: is an aromatic component (phenylpropene) present in large quantities in the nutmeg and also present in tarragon shoots.
Source: Dr. Duke's Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases (2012).
Properties and uses of tarragon
More information on tarragon properties and medicinal uses in the listing above
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This material is for informational purposes only. In case of doubt, consult the doctor.