Absinthe wormwood is normally Artemisia Absinthium or Grand Wormwood which is actually a variety of wormwood which does not contain a vast amount of the chemical thujone. A few brands of Absinthe use Roman Wormwood which also contains thujone in addition to Grand Wormwood so drinks with two types of wormwood may contain more thujone. Thujone amounts can differ between brands significantly, some Absinthes only have negligible amounts of thujone, whereas others have up to 35mg/kg. Only Absinthe which has negligible amounts of thujone is legal for sale in the USA because thujone is an illegal food additive there.
Absinthe Wormwood has a controversy?
Medicines have been made using this common wormwood, Artemisia Absinthium since Ancient times. It has been utilized:-
– To decrease poisoning caused by toadstools and hemlock.
– As a tonic.
– To reduce a fever.
– As a stimulant to digestion.
– Treating with parasitic intestinal worms.
Absinthe’s bitter taste green color and name all are due to the wormwood herb. One can see the famous “louche” effect caused by the essential oils when water is added to the drink.
In the early 1900s Absinthe was banned in many countries because it contained the chemical thujone which has alleged harmful effects. Absinthe drinking was believed to be a danger on a country. After drinking the Absinthe a french man consumed lots of other alcohol and killed his family for which Absinthe was made responsible!
From being a trendy Bohemian drink enjoyed by many writers and artists, such as Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway and Oscar Wilde, it was suddenly a banned and illegal drink. Although it was illegalized in most of the European countries and also in the USA but was never banned in the UK, Spain, Portugal or the Czech Republic.
Absinthe Wormwood Revival
There was never any real evidence linking Absinthe drinking to hallucinations or insanity and it is now known that Absinthe is no worse than any other highly alcoholic drink. Absinthe contains twice the alcoholic content than other drinks so one should be careful while consuming it but Absinthe wormwood is not claimed to be harmful. The combination of the sedative effects of some of the herbs (and the alcohol content)and the stimulating effects of the Wormwood and other herbs can make a person feel a funny lucid or clear headed type of drunkenness when consuming heavy dose of Absinthe.
There has been a renewed interest, a revival, in Absinthe drinking after it’s legalization in most countries. There are many different types and brands of Absinthe available to buy and buyers can even order Absinthe essence, to make their own Absinthe, online from companies like AbsintheKit.com.
Absinthe Wormwood is still the most important ingredient in Absinthe today but thujone content is strictly regulated in the European Union (no more than 10mg/kg) and the United States where only trace amounts are allowed. Absinthe containing real wormwood and herbs is important for a person.