Reviewed on 6/11/2021
Other Name(s):

Beggary, Earth Smoke, Fleur de Terre, Fumaria, Fumaria officinalis, Fumée de Terre, Fumeterre, Fumeterre Officinale, Fumiterry, Fumus, Hedge Fumitory, Herba Fumariae, Herbe à la Jaunisse, Herbe à la Veuve, Vapor, Wax Dolls.


Fumitory is a low shrub with gray pointed leaves, and from a distance the plant can have the wispy appearance of smoke. Because of this, it received the name “earth smoke.” The parts of the plant that grow above the ground are used to make medicine.

Fumitory is used to treat intestinal spasms and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS); and to start the flow of bile, a fluid that is important for the digestion of fats and is produced by the liver.

Fumitory is also used for skin conditions, eye irritation (conjunctivitis), heart problems, fluid retention, and constipation.

How does it work?

Fumitory contains a substance that may reduce spasms of the bile duct or gut.


Next to red peppers, you can get the most vitamin C from ________________. See Answer

Uses & Effectiveness

Possibly Ineffective for...

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Bile disorders. Early research suggests that fumitory might help reduce stomach pain and other symptoms associated with bile problems.
  • Spasms of the intestines.
  • Skin conditions.
  • Eye irritation.
  • Heart problems.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of fumitory for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).

Side Effects

Fumitory is POSSIBLY SAFE for most adults when taken by mouth in the recommended amounts for a short period of time. But taking large amounts of fumitory by mouth is POSSIBLY UNSAFE. It can cause trembling, convulsions, and death.

Don't use eye drop preparations of fumitory that haven't been commercially sterilized. You might get an eye infection if the drops contain bacteria.


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Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking fumitory if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.


The appropriate dose of fumitory depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for fumitory. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

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