Herbals consist of any plants or plant features that are used to treat symptoms or cure some maladies due to its known therapeutic properties. A lot of medicinal herbs today are used to improve health conditions. Since ancient times, many herbs were used already due to their health benefit claims. Some were proven really effective already by ongoing traditional medicine studies. These herbal medicines take the form of tablets, powders, syrups, capsules, extracts, teas, mixtures and preserves.
Before trying to use any herbals, make sure to consult first your primary specialist about this since there might be a possibility of causing serious health problems if herbals were taken with other drugs that may result to serious drug interactions. Another thing is that taking a larger dose than what is recommended is generally unwise. As long as possible, make sure to take herbal medicines under a medical professional’s supervision to make sure safety along the treatment course. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding your baby, be cautious enough to follow your doctor’s advise.
Here are some of the well-known and scientifically proven medicinal herbs, mostly grown in tropic or sub-tropic areas. Then you can plant them in your garden and save money from buying commercialized drug products:
- Blumea balsamifera
Other names: Blumea camphor
Uses: It is used to prevent accumulation of fluids in the body since it promotes healthy urinary elimination. It has great anti-edema and diuretic properties. In addition, this herbal plant also prevents the formation of urinary stones – kidney and bladder stones, urolithiasis.
Preparations and Dosages: Fresh leaves are chopped and boiled instantaneously for fifteen minutes until a glassful amount of liquid remains. It is then recommended to drink one part for three times a day.
Reminders: This herbal plant is NOT a cure for kidney infection or any other urinary tract infections.
- Cassia alata
Other names: Candle Tree, Empress Candle Plant
Uses: It has a very high anti-fungal property. It is mostly used for tinea flava infection, ringworm infection, athlete’s foot and scabies.
Preparations and Dosages: Freshly matured leaves are pounded and mashed. Then, apply it as a soap solution to affected areas once or twice a day.
- Quisqualis indica
Other names: Chinese honeysuckle, Rangoon Creeper
Uses: It has a very good anti-helminthic action. It distorts worm infection’s development.
Preparations and Dosages: The seeds of this plant are edible. It is taken after two hours eating dinner or last day’s meal. The recommended doses are as follows: adults,8-10 seeds; 7-12 years old, 6-7 seeds; 6-8 years old, 5-6 seeds; and 4-5 years old, 4-5 seeds. If no worms are expelled after first treatment, given dosage is repeated for another one week.
Reminders: No doses are allowed for children under 4 years old.
- Carmona retusa
Other names: Fukien tea tree
Uses: This herb is great for stomach-ache and diarrhea.
Preparations and Dosages: The leaves gathered are chopped and boiled in 500 ml of water for 15 minutes until 200 ml remains. It is then cooled and strained. Drink the solution once a day.
- Momordica charantia
Other names: Bitter melon, Bitter gourd
Uses: It helps lower blood sugar levels. It can also aid in managing blood sugar levels of people with diabetes mellitus or mild non-insulin dependent patients.
Preparations and Dosages: Prepare about 7 tablespoons of chopped fresh leaves. Then, boil them in 500 ml of water for a quarter of an hour under low fire level. Let it simmer without covering the pot. Drink about 1/3 of original amount left after straining the boiled contents for three times per day right after eating meals. Also, a half cup serving of steamed or blanched leaves can be eaten straight twice a day.
- Vitex negundo
Other names: Chaste tree
Uses: It is great for people experiencing asthma, cough, colds and fever. It also helps in people with dysentery. It is also a great pain reliever for headache and such. It also has great skin care properties especially for skin diseases like scabies, dermatitis, eczema, non-healing wounds and ulcers. It also serves best for rheumatism, sprain, contusions, strains and insect bites. It can also be used for aromatic baths for sick people.
Preparations and Dosages: In treatment of colds and pain, a decoction is necessary. You can boil the raw fruits or leaves for a quarter of an hour. You can also boil a handful of leaves with flowers. It shall produce about 300 ml of strained solution and drink it thrice a day. For skin preparations, clean and wash the affected skin or wound with the prepared solution. In other skin applications, you can pound the leaves and apply it on the target skin area. For mild headache, you can apply crushed leaves on the forehead.
- Peperomia pelucida
Other names: Pepper elder, Clear weed
Uses: It has great anti-uric acid properties. It has great effects on people with rheumatism and gout.
Preparations and Dosages: Drink about 500 ml of solution made from one and a half cup of boiled leaves of this herb. Divide it into three servings per day.
- Allium sativum
Other names: Garlic
Uses: It aids in treating people with hypertension. It also has great effect on lowering blood cholesterol levels. It can also be used to treat toothaches.
Preparations and Dosages: A piece of garlic can be roasted, fried or soaked in vinegar solution for half an hour. It can also be boiled in water for a quarter of an hour. The piece is taken right after meals for full stomach capacity to prevent digestive upset and intestinal ulcer formation. For toothache use, pounding a small piece and applying directly to affected area may do.
- Psidium guajava
Other names: Apple guava, Common guava
Uses: It has a very high antiseptic property. It is then used for washing and disinfecting wounds. It can also be used for toothache and as mouth gargle solution. It is sometimes recommended for diarrhea also.
Preparations and Dosages: Apply pounded leaves on affected skin areas or wounds for about twice a day. As a mouthwash solution, chopped leaves are boiled for quarter of an hour and the warm solution is used after. For toothache application, pounded leaves will do. For diarrhea, boiled leaves solution is taken three to four times a day.
- Mentha cordifolia
Other names: Yerba Buena, Buena Mint
Uses: It is great for pain treatment such as headache, stomach-ache, gas pain, toothache and gum swelling. It is also a great expectorant for people with cough. It is also effective for people with insect bites or itching conditions.
Preparations and Dosages: As conventional pain relief, chopped leaves are boiled for fifteen minutes in 500 ml of water. For headache, toothache and itching, crushed leaves produce sap and are collected. The sap is then applied to painful parts. For cough treatment, tea preparation of this herb is ideal.