Star Anise

anise seed

Uncover Hidden Herbs meanings

The star anise has been given several identities that include Illicium verum, Chinese star anise, and star aniseed.

It is a spice that closely resembles anise in taste; it is taken from the pericap of the Illicium verum which grows abundantly all over southern China as well as Northern Vietnam. Star anise in made up of anethole, which the ingredient behind the flavour of other anise, In modern pastry, star anise has dominated baking and liquor production in the Western despite its high pricing.

One such liquor is Galliano. Other uses of star anise are the production of sambuca and other absinthe types. The star anise has been said to add taste to meat. In Asia, the Indians use it to prepare biryani. The Indians and Chinese and Malaysians also use it to make cuisines. In many Asian countries, it is a profit generating cash crop that has gained ground among the farmers.

Star anise will help to

  • Improving digestion.
  • Treat rheumatic illnesses.
  • Eliminate bacteria and other microorganisms.

Medicinal uses

An herbal tea prepared using the star anise is used to cure rheumatism as the seeds aid in digestion, especially when chewed after meals. The herb has always been used to relive cold stagnation among the Chinese due to its attributes as a warm, moving herb. It has been successfully tested fro various pharmacological activities more so those relating to antioxidant, antibacterial, antimicrobial, sedative insecticidal, analgesic, and convulsive activities. Among all plants, this is the best source of shikimic acid, which is an essential precursor during pharmaceutical synthesis of the famous influenza drug Tamiflu. Shikimic acid can be produced by a large percentage of the autotrophic organisms but despite it being acquired in commercial quantities from other places, the anise has been the main industrial source.

Note that, the anise is widely grown in four of the Chinese provinces and harvested in the time span March - May. In rare case, the star anise is also found England, New South Wales. The Japanese star anise has high levels of toxins, it’s not recommended even as incense. Under no circumstance should it be used.

Magical uses

Star anise is a popular herb in hoodoo and is said to cast off the well-known ‘evil eye’ curse. It is said to be a powerful psychic herb and can increase visions, ward off nightmares, cleanse bad juju, and clear a negative space. It strengthens the psychic eye which is also helpful in creating a youthful appearance. You can use Star anise to help during dream time by placing it in a magic bag under your pillow. Other herbs that it works well is flax seeds for lunar energy and vervain for psychic awareness.

By Florance Saul
Aug 29, 2012