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Herbal Guide

Common Herbs
 

Alfalfa

Alfalfa is a well-known herb to health-conscious consumers. It is high in nutrients, which are drawn into the plant from deep in the soil. The richest land source of trace minerals, the roots of Alfalfa plants have been known to reach as much as thirty feet deep! The leaves of the alfalfa plant are rich in minerals and nutrients, including calcium, magnesium, potassium, and carotene. They are also a source of protein, vitamin E and vitamin K. Alfalfa has been used by the Chinese since the sixth century to treat kidney stones, and to relieve fluid retention and swelling. Alfalfa nourishes the digestive, skeletal, glandular, and urinary systems. Alfalfa also contains chlorophyll, which is renowned for its cleansing qualities.


Aloe Vera

Aloe vera has historically been known for assisting the functions of the gastrointestinal tract, and for its properties of soothing, cleansing and helping the body to maintain healthy tissues. This plant has a reputation of facilitating digestion, aiding blood and lymphatic circulation, as well as kidney, liver and gall bladder functions. Aloe contains at least three anti-inflammatory fatty acids that are helpful for the stomach, small intestine and colon. It naturally alkalizes digestive juices to prevent overacidity - a common cause of digestive complaints. A newly discovered compound in aloe, acemannan, is currently being studied for its ability to strengthen the immune system. Studies have shown acemannan to boost T-lymphocyte cells that aid natural resistance.


Angelica Root

Angelica nutritionally supports the digestive and respiratory systems.


Anise

Anise seeds act to remove excess mucus in the gastrointestinal area.


Barberry

Barberry nourishes the liver and gallbladder and helps the bile to flow freely. It helps remove toxins from the bowels.


Bayberry

Bayberry is an excellent blood purifier and detoxifier. It is effective for helping to stop a cold from forming if taken when the first symptoms appear.


Bdellium Gum

Bdellium gum has many positive effects on the human body. Studies show they include: lowering cholesterol levels, reducing tissue inflammation, promoting balance in the thyroid gland, and lowering body weight.


Bilberry

Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) contains nutrients that protect eyes from eyestrain or fatigue, and can improve circulation to the eyes. When British Royal Air Force pilots During World War II ate Bilberry preserves before night missions and discovered that their night vision improved afterwards, this herb was investigated and found to be very beneficial for the eyes. Bilberry works by improving the microcirculation and regeneration of retinal purple, a substance required for good eyesight. It is believed that this property is related to the high amount of proanthocyanidins, a type of flavonoid that tends to prevent capillary fragility and strengthen the capillaries which nourish the eyes. Other properties appear to assist in thinning the blood and stimulating the release of vasodilators. Anthocyanin, a natural antioxidant, also lowers blood pressure, reduces clotting and improves blood supply to the nervous system. Anthocyanosides support and enhance the health of collagen structures in the blood vessels of the eyes, thus aiding in the development of strong healthy capillaries that can carry vital nutrients to eye muscles and nerves. Bilberry has long been a remedy for poor vision and "night blindness." Clinical tests have indicated that oral administration of bilberry tends to improve visual accuracy in healthy people and can help those with eye disorders such as pigmentosa, retinitis, glaucoma, and myopia.


Bissy Nut

Bissy nut (Cola acuminate) has been known to help relieve inflammation in disorders such as rheumatism and gout. It also is used as a diuretic, and contains metabolism-enhancing properties.


Black Cohosh

The early Native Americans used Black Cohosh to treat snakebite and a tea from the root is reputed to soothe sore throat. They also used the root to help ease complaints associated with the skeletal system. It is a traditional approach for many gynecological topics, including menstrual cramps, labor and delivery, and menstruation. When combined with other nervine herbs, it provides excellent soothing properties. Black Cohosh also nourishes the respiratory system. Black Cohosh has traditionally been used to calm the nervous system by nourishing blood vessels, and balancing the hormones in menopausal women. Studies show it contains substances that bind to estrogen receptors. It has also been shown in lab experiments (in vitro) to inhibit microbial activity.


Black Currant Oil

Black currant oil is rich in linoleic acid and gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). This substance supports the body's manufacture of hormone-like substances known as prostaglandins which help regulate functions of the circulatory system. GLA assists the body with its energy processes and is a structural component of the brain, bone marrow, muscles and cell membranes.


Black Walnut

Black walnut hulls contain a substance which helps the body eliminate parasites. Although this is the primary purpose of this herb, it is also used for poison oak, ringworm and skin ailments. It has antifungal properties and is also said to promote bowel regularity.


Blessed Thistle

Blessed thistle acts as a general tonic to the female reproductive system, as well as helping to balance the hormones.


Blue Cohosh

Blue cohosh nutritionally supports the female reproductive system.


Blue Vervain

Blue vervain nourishes the digestive, nervous and respiratory systems. It helps the body maintain balance during the winter season, and fortifies it against the organisms which promote flu, coughs and colds. This herb acts as a diaphoretic, which means that it helps the body eliminate toxins through the pores by stimulating perspiration.


Burdock

Burdock is a natural blood purifier and detoxifier. It is favored for helping the body maintain healthy skin. It nourishes the urinary and respiratory systems, and also nutritionally supports joints and other skeletal tissues. It is reported to promote glandular and hormone balance, as well as remove accumulations and deposits around the joints.


Cascara Sagrada

Cascara sagrada is used to help the body relieve constipation. However, it is reputed not to be habit-forming and also nutritionally supports the stomach, liver, pancreas, and gallbladder. It is cleansing, as well as nourishing, to the colon. It is also known to assist with digestion, and help the body to eliminate worms and parasites.


Catnip

Catnip nourishes the stomach and nerves. It calms the nervous system and is used also for digestion. Catnip is also said to help ease symptoms of the flu such as nausea and diarrhea.


Cat's Claw

The highly effective properties contained in the inner bark of the cat's claw plant have demonstrated, through centuries of usage dating back to the time of the ancient Incas, to have a profound and positive influence on the body's defense system. Studies conducted since the 1970s at research clinics in Peru, Austria, Germany, England, Hungary and Italy validate the traditional usage and indicates that this herb may be beneficial in ameliorating a host of modern day afflictions which have no answers from the orthodox medical arena. It is known to help nutritionally support the body's defense, circulatory and gastrointestinal systems through its antioxidant and build properties.


Cayenne

Cayenne is a pepper well known for its benefits to the circulatory system. It aids the body to balance pressure levels and resist abnormal bleeding. Cayenne also nourishes the digestive system. This plant assists in the body's utilization of other herbs, when used in an herbal combination. When applied topically, it helps relieve minor discomfort.


Celery Seed

Celery seeds contain vitamins A, C and B-complex.


Chamomile

Chamomile soothes the nerves and stomach. It nourishes the respiratory tract and helps alleviate discomfort associated with menstrual problems.


Chickweed

Chickweed helps the body eliminate mucus and fatty plaque from the system. It nourishes the gastrointestinal areas and has soothing properties. It is a natural blood cleanser, as well as an herb that addresses fat accumulations.


Comfrey

Comfrey nourishes the pituitary gland (the master gland of the body), as well as the bones and skin. It also strengthens the respiratory system and is considered to be one of nature's great healers.


Cranberry

Cranberry contains a compound that prevents bacteria from adhering to the walls of the bladder and rest of the urinary tract. This prevents the bacteria from spreading and eventually results in the halt of infection. Using cranberry on a regular basis may help prevent the formation of kidney stones.


Cyani Flowers

Cyani flowers soothe the nervous system and exert a positive influence on tissues of the eyes.


Damiana

Damiana is known for its aphrodisiac properties, and has also been used for nervousness, weakness and exhaustion. It is said to increase sperm count in the male and to balance hormones in women.


Dandelion

Dandelion nourishes the liver and contains many vital nutrients. Dandelion root has been used traditionally to purify the blood, and to benefit the circulatory and glandular systems.


Devil's Claw

Devil's claw is an herb which has been well-known in Europe and Africa for hundreds of years and is gaining popularity in the United States and the entire North American continent. It is known for its ability to nourish the skeletal system. Studies indicate that its action is similar to cortisone. It helps the body lessen the severity of pain in joints and connective tissues.


Dong Quai

Dong quai calms the central nervous system and nourishes the brain. It also balances and strengthens the female organs and regulates their functions.


Echinacea

Modern scientific studies now validate Echinacea's traditional usage as a topical agent to help the body repair skin wounds, and internally to enhance the immune system. The active constituents in Echinacea which are thought to bolster the body's defense are known as polysaccharides. Polysaccharides stimulate the activity of macrophages, white blood cells which destroy bacteria, viruses, other foreign invaders, and even wayward cells. It also activates the body's production of interferon, a specific protein which protects cells against the invasion of viruses.


Elderberry Flowers

Elderberry flowers can help rid the body cells of toxins, increase circulation and purify the blood.


Elecampane

Elecampane is a natural expectorant and nourishes the respiratory system.


Ephedra sinica

This Chinese herb (Ma huang) is nutritionally beneficial for fat reduction and increased energy. It facilitates energy and heat exchange for efficient metabolic function.


False Unicorn

False unicorn is considered a tonic to the reproductive organs and addresses symptoms of headaches and depression in menopausal women.


Fennel

Fennel helps detoxify and remove waste material from the body.


Fenugreek

Fenugreek has many traditional uses, including nourishing the skin, respiratory system, and the pancreas. It helps the body to expel mucus and toxins. Fenugreek dissolves fat and is high in nutrients.


Flax Seed Oil

Flax seed oil provides omega 3 (linolenic acid), omega 6 and omega 9 fatty acids. Omegas 3 and 6 benefit the cardiovascular system, as well as the immune and nervous systems. It also contains some beta carotene (approximately 4,300 IU per teaspoon) and vitamin E (appproximately 15 IU per teaspoon).


Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia cambogia is a South Asian plant that is nutritionally beneficial in blocking the production of fats. Scientific research conducted on this herb since 1969 demonstrates that it slows the body's conversion of carbohydrates and excess calories to fat, decreasing production of harmful fats (low-density lipoproteins), promoting sustained energy levels by enhancing the body's production of glycogen, reducing the body's desire for excess food; helping to nutritionally support the metabolism and burn calories. Human studies indicate that Garcinia, also known as HCA (hydroxycitric acid) may be especially effective when combined with chromium and L-carnitine.


Garlic

Garlic provides nourishment for the circulatory, immune and urinary systems. It aids in supporting with normal circulation, nourishing stomach tissues, maintaining normal blood pressure and aids the body's natural ability to resist disease. Garlic is a natural antibiotic and fungicide.


Gentian Root

Gentian Root nourishes and strengthens the digestive system. It stimulates the appetite, nutritionally supports the liver, and nourishes the spleen, pancreas, stomach and kidneys.


Ginger

Ginger root is nourishing to the gastrointestinal system. It also helps the body to eliminate wastes through the skin. Ginger enhances circulation and acts as a catalyst for other herbs, to increase their effectiveness. It helps the body relieve congestion.


Ginkgo biloba

Ginkgo biloba is one of the most promising and highly studied natural botanicals. Current interest in ginkgo began in the Orient, where it has long been valued for its effects on the challenges of aging. Ginkgo is effective in nutritionally supporting the body's systems, especially through its antioxidant properties. This is especially important as we grow older. Aging is a process of deterioration. The hypothesis that free radicals (reactive molecules) in the body are a direct cause of this deterioration is gaining widespread acceptance. Recently, the benefits of antioxidant vitamins in reducing free radicals in the the body have been widely published. Ginkgo is a very potent free radical scavenger. Eliminating free radicals is important in preserving youthfulness. If we slow down the deterioration of our body systems, we can enjoy fitness and vitality all through our lives.


Ginseng

Ginseng is nutritionally beneficial for the immune system and long term energy. It nourishes the circulatory system and enhances mental alertness and stamina.


Golden Seal

Golden seal is used both internally and externally to help the body fight infections with its nutritional properties. It helps the body soothe inflammations of the mucous membranes and balance their function. This herb especially nourishes the liver, glandular and respiratory systems. Golden seal helps cleanse the system of foreign organisms.


Gotu Kola

Gotu kola nourishes the nervous system, especially the brain. It is said to help improve memory and enhance vitality throughout the body. This herb is known for helping the body to balance blood pressure levels and assist in the healing of wounds. Gotu Kola is known in India as a "longevity" herb.


Hawthorn Berries

Hawthorn is traditionally known for its strong and powerful effect on the circulatory system, particularly the heart. It has been used for centuries with great success, especially in Europe. Even today it remains a favorite among herbalists as a cardiac tonic. Hawthorn is valued for nourishing blood pressure and circulation. When used on a regular, long-term basis hawthorn exerts a continued protection to the cardiovascular system.


Hops

Hops helps the body with pain and insomnia. Hops is rich in nutrients that nourish the nervous system. The herbalist Culpeper said, "It opens obstructions of the liver and spleen, cleanses the blood, loosens the belly, cleanses the veins from gravel and provokes urine." This plant is considered both a tonic and relaxant.


Horehound Root

Horehound root is soothing to the respiratory system and is a natural expectorant.


Horsetail

Horsetail is rich in "beauty" nutrients that nourish the nails, skin, hair, bones and the body's connective tissue. It is also benefits the glands and urinary tract. Horsetail helps heal fractured bones because of its rich supply of nutrients.


Ho Shou Wu

Ho shou wu (Fo-Ti) is fabled in Asian history to restore the original color of graying hair. It nourishes the glandular, nervous, and skeletal systems. This herb is reputed to enhance the health of the liver and kidneys. The properties of Ho Shou Wu are said to be similar to Golden Seal, Chamomile and Ginseng. It is known to help improve health, stamina and resistance to diseases.


Hydrangea

Hydrangea has traditionally been used to strengthen the urinary tract and help regulate its function. This plant contains alkaloids which help soothe the body, especially in the bladder and kidney areas. Hydrangea also works like a natural inflammation reliever and cleanses the joint areas.


Hyssop

Hyssop has been used for hundreds of years as an herbal remedy for afflictions of the respiratory system. It soothes throats and nourishes the lungs.


Irish Moss

Irish moss is high in nutrients and nourishes the glandular system, lungs, and kidneys. It purifies the body's cells and strengthens the thyroid gland.


Juniper Berry

Juniper berries strengthen the urinary system and help the body eliminate excess water and toxins.


Kava Kava

Kava kava soothes the nerves.


Kelp

Kelp contains nearly thirty minerals which nourish the glands (especially the thyroid and pituitary). By enhancing the action of the glandular system, it helps balance the body's metabolism and rate at which it burns calories. Kelp, also known as seaweed, grows in the rich ocean beds, far below surface pollution levels. Because of its high nutrient content, this herb is reputedly beneficial for a wide range of applications. It is known to nourish the sensory nerves, brain membranes, also spinal cord and brain tissue. Kelp contains alginic acid which can help protect the body against the effects of radiation.


Lady Slipper

Lady slipper is a member of the orchid family. This delicate flower contains in its root many nervine properties.


Licorice

Licorice root nutritionally supports the respiratory and gastrointestinal systems, heart and spleen. This herb can soothe irritated mucous membranes and help the body get rid of unwanted mucus with its expectorant properties. Licorice Root has properties similar to cortisone and estrogen. It stimulates the adrenal glands and helps the body cope with stress.


Lobelia

Lobelia has been traditionally revered for its soothing properties that nourish the nervous system. Lobelia also enhances the function of the respiratory system and has antispasmodic effects. It has been used in preparations designed to lessen one's desire for nicotine.


Male Fern

Male fern helps the body get rid of tapeworm.


Mandrake

Mandrake works with the liver, gallbladder and all aspects of digestion. It exerts a powerful influence on the glands.


Marshmallow

Marshmallow has soothing properties and nutritionally supports the respiratory and gastrointestinal systems.


Milk Thistle

Milk thistle extract is a potent antioxidant which prevents harm from free radicals and lends nutritional support to the liver. Milk thistle seed extract contains silymarin, a unique type of flavonoid-like compound considered the active ingredient of milk thistle.


Mullein

Mullein has been referred to as a "natural wonder herb" which soothes the lungs and irritations associated with the respiratory tract. It also nourishes the lymphatic and glandular systems. Mullein can help remove mucus from the system.


Myrrh

Traditionally, the properties of myrrh resin have been highly favored for soothing muscles and wounds. Myrrh nourishes mucuous membranes with its cleansing effects. The extract, when combined with water, is excellent as a comforting gargle for a scratchy throat.


Noni

The noni plant has many folk-remedy uses. It is fabled among the Polynesian peoples to especially help support the body's respiratory, immune, digestive, and structural systems.


Oatstraw

Oatstraw contains high amounts of bone-building materials.


Pan Pien Pien

Pan pien lien helps the body remove obstructions and congestion, thus strengthening and improving many areas. It nourishes and strengthens the lung areas, as well as soothing the muscles and joints.


Papaya

Papaya contains an enzyme called papain which helps the body break down protein.


Parruva Brava

Parruva brava nourishes the thermogenic processes of the body. It has been traditionally valued for its purification properties which promote perspiration.


Parsley

Parsley is valued as a blood builder, cleanser and has pressure regulating properties.


Pau d'Arco

Pau d'arco is a South American herb which helps strengthen and nourish the body's defense system. A healthy immune system is a key in fighting diseases and infections.


Passionflower

Passionflower has been used to help the body reduce anxiety, hysteria and nervousness by nourishing the nervous system. Passionflower has been traditionally used in both herbal and homeopathic medicine for pain, insomnia, nervous exhaustion, asthma and attention deficit disorder. In vitro experiments show that passicol, an alkaloid found in passionflower, kills a range of molds, yeasts, and bacteria.


Peppermint

Peppermint calms the stomach, intestinal tract, and the nervous system. It comforts the stomach and nourishes the salivary glands to help with digestion. It has astringent properties and soothes the nervous system.


Periwinkle

Periwinkle helps relieve congestion and aids in maintaining balanced circulation.


Pippali Fruit

Pippali fruit is a pepper which has been used extensively in Ayurvedic medicine to address digestive disorders and obesity.


Prickly Ash

Prickly Ash nourishes and enhances circulation throughout the entire body.


Queen of the Meadow

Queen of the Meadow is traditionally valued to help heal strains, sprains, and the associated aches. It nourishes the ligaments and tendons, and assists in restoring their normal function. It helps release inorganic deposits from the joints and tissues.


Quercetin

Quercetin has been shown to help the body defend itself against harmful microorganisms.


Raspberry Leaf

Red raspberry leaf strengthens the uterus wall and regulates menstrual flow. It nourishes the reproductive organs, especially the uterine muscles, and helps strengthen and prepare the body for childbirth. It is also highly valued for its soothing and astringent properties to the stomach and intestinal tract. Raspberry leaf is a nutrient-rich herb that helps balance the body so that diarrhea or constipation can be relieved.


Rhubarb

Rhubarb can help dissolve mucus adhering to the walls of the colon.


Safflower

The flowers of the safflower plant are used to nourish the liver, gallbladder and respiratory system. Safflower helps balance cholesterol in the body, and assists in eliminating excessive uric acid. It helps break up phlegm and soothes the digestive system.


Sage

Sage helps check excessive mucus in the body.


Sarsaparilla

Sarsaparilla contains substances which are similar to the male hormone testosterone and the female hormone progesterone. It can safely help increase the metabolic rate and balance the glandular system.


Saw Palmetto

Saw palmetto berry is said to nourish glandular tissue, and has been used by herbalists and others to nutritionally support the prostate gland.


Schizandra Chinensis

Schizandra chinensis helps the body adapt to stress and nourishes the nervous system.


Scullcap

Scullcap is one of the most powerful herbs to help you get a better night's sleep. It calms the nervous system, relaxes the muscles, and helps balance blood pressure.


Senega Root

Senega root nourishes the respiratory tract.


Senna

Senna assists in expelling waste from the intestines and kills worms.


Siberian Ginseng

Siberian ginseng nutritionally supports the glandular system. It is called an "adaptogen", which means that it helps the body adapt to any situation which normally would alter its function. Siberian Ginseng has a beneficial effect on the heart and circulation. It stimulates the entire body energy to overcome stress, fatigue, and weakness. Studies suggest that Siberian Ginseng may help reduce blood sugar levels, balance blood pressure levels, and enhance the immune system by boosting the body's production of natural killer cells.


Slippery Elm

Slippery elm can help the body eliminate mucus from the lungs and strengthen the gastrointestinal and respiratory systems. It soothes irritated tissues and helps nourish and strengthen the body.


Squaw Vine

Squaw vine strengthens the uterus, and helps relieve congestion there and in the ovaries. It may help strengthen the defense against vaginal infections.


Suma

Suma is an adaptogen herb, which means it helps the body adapt to stress, and acts as a tonic to the entire system. By enhancing the body's immune system, Suma aids in preventing free-radical damage to the body. Suma contains significant amounts of Germanium, a trace mineral which stimulates the immune system and helps promote oxygen flow to cells. It also contains "allantoin", a substance which assists in healing wounds. Some of Suma's other beneficial nutrients include vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids, and the natural plant hormones sitosterol and stigmasterol. These phytochemicals nourish the circulatory and glandular systems. The Japanese investigated Suma in trials against specific types of tumor cells. The researchers discovered that six saponins called pffaffosides A, B, C, D, E, and F are the unique chemicals present in Suma that inhibit tumor cell growth. Brazilian researchers have found that Suma is both safe and effective for altered-immune disorders.


Thyme

Thyme is known as a powerful antiseptic and a general tonic, with healing powers. It is said to be used in cases of anemia, bronchial and intestinal disturbances.


Uva Ursi

Uva ursi strengthens the urinary system and helps the body eliminate excess water.


Valerian

Valerian root nourishes the nervous system and has soothing properties. Valerian is a safe and natural sleeping aid. It helps soothe rattled nerves and assists the body in relieving insomnia. Properties of the plant have demonstrated to give calming relief to muscles, the nerves and blood vessels.


Watermelon seeds

Watermelon seeds help the body eliminate excess water.


White Oak

White oak bark is a marvelous herb to help nourish and strengthen injured areas of the body. It has been used successfully for many applications, including fortifying blood vessels and tissues. White Oak has astringent properties, and it also soothes the throat.


White Willow

White willow benefits the stomach, kidneys, bowels, and intestines. It works like a mild and natural analgesic which is gentle on the stomach.


Wild Cherry Bark

Wild Cherry Bark is considered to be a very useful expectorant.


Wild Yam

Wild yam has many effective uses. It is known to relax the muscles and promote glandular balance in women. Wild Yam contains natural plant components known as phytochemicals which help the body balance hormone levels. Wild Yam nourishes the digestive system and the nerves.


Wood Betony

Wood betony works well for both children and adults. It is said to help migraine headaches.


Wormwood

Wormwood helps eliminate worms and parasites.


Yellow Dock Root

Yellow dock root is a bitter herb noted for its high iron content. It nourishes the skin, stimulates bile production, tones the liver and gallbladder and purifies the blood.


Yerba Santa

Yerba santa helps the body expel mucus from the respiratory tract. It is known as a blood purifier and strengthener of the digestive system.

Herbal Actions Guide

by Dr. Rita Louise

For those new to the world of herbal therapy, the most extraordinary and tantalizing thing about herbs are their proven action and their incredible versatility. The actions of herbs are due in part to their active constituents.   Active constituents are special chemicals and combination of chemicals and oils that are present in each particular plant.  These combinations may cause a synergistic action between various constituents of each plant. 

Herbs are chosen and combined in prescriiptions according to their actions. The actions depend on the active ingredients. Most herbs have several actions and the skill in choosing the right herbs for a particular patient's needs lies in selecting the right degrees of action and the best combination of actions in the individual herbs that make up each prescriiption.  

Each individual plant has many different actions, and each of these actions maybe altered by combining different herbs.  Close study of the actions of each herb will improve your skill understanding of how and why these herbs work.

Below you will find each action, a definition of the action, and the herbs that best represent that particular action.

Adaptogen

Substances which put the body into a state of non-specific heightened resistance in order to better resist stress and adapt to extraordinary challenges.
Aswagandha, Siberian Ginseng, Ginkgo, Gotu Kola, Ho-Shou-Wu, Licorice, Reishi, Schizandra, Shiitake, Suma.

Alterative

An herb that will gradually restore the proper function of the body and increase health and vitality. Sometimes referred to as blood purifiers.
Alfalfa, Black Cohosh, Blue Vervain, Boneset, Burdock ,Chaparral Leaf, Chickweed, Cleavers, Cornsilk, Dong Quai, Echinacea, Garlic, Gentian Root, Golden Seal, Gotu Kola, Ho-Shou-Wu, Irish Moss, Kelp, Licorice, Mandrake, Nettles, Oregon Grape, Pau d'Arco, Prickly Ash, Red Clover, Red Raspberry, Rhubarb, St. John’s Wort, , Sarsaparilla, White Willow, Yarrow, Yellow Dock, Yerba Santa, Yucca.

Analgesic

Analgesics or Anodynes are herbs that reduce pain.
Blue Vervain, Catnip, Chamomile, Dong Quai, Feverfew, Ginger, Jamaican Dogwood, Hops, Kava Kava, Lobelia, Passion Flower, Pau d’arco, Reishi, Safflower, Scullcap, St. John’s Wort, Valerian, White Willow.

Anthelmintic

Herbs that work against parasitic worms which may be present in the digestive system.
Black Walnut, Chaparral Leaf, Garlic, Mugwort, Sheep Sorrel, Wormwood .

Antibacterial

Herbs with properties that can inhibit bacterial growth.
Blessed Thistle, Cloves, Echinacea, Garlic, Kelp, Licorice, Myrrh, Pau d'Arco, Reishi, St. John’s Wort, Scullcap, Yucca.

Antibilious

Herbs that help the body to remove excess bile.
Barberry, Dandelion, Golden Seal, Mandrake, Vervain, Wild Yam, Wormwood.

Anticatarrhal

Herbs that help the body reduce excess mucous and phlegm.
Boneset, Echinacea, Elder, Garcinia, Garlic, Golden Seal, Hyssop, Marshmallow, Oregon Grape, Sage, Saw Palmetto, Uva Ursi, Wild Yam, Yarrow.

Antiemetic

Herbs that reduce the feeling of nausea and can help to relieve or prevent vomiting.
Barberry, Cloves, Elecampane, Fennel, Ginger, Oregon Grape, Red Raspberry, Wild Yam.

Anti-galactagogue

Herbs that prevent or decrease the secretion of milk .
Black Walnut, Sage.

Anti-inflammatory

These herbs help the body to combat inflammations.
Aswagandha, Blue Vervain, Butcher’s Broom, Calendula, Cat's Claw, Chamomile, Chaparral Leaf, Cleavers, Devil's Claw, Eyebright, Fennel, Feverfew, Gentian Root, Guggul, Horehound, Hyssop, Licorice, Reishi, St. John’s Wort, White Willow, Witch Hazel, Wormwood, Yarrow, Yucca.

Antilithic

Herbs that prevent the formation or help remove stones or gravel in the urinary system.
Gravel Root, Hydrangea, Stone Root, Uva Ursi.

Antimicrobial

Herbs that can help the body destroy or resist pathogenic micro-organisms.
Calendula, Cat's Claw, Cloves, Echinacea, Eucalyptus, Feverfew, Juniper, Licorice, Myrrh, Olive Leaf, Pau d’arco, Red Clover, Rose Hips, St. John's Wort, Uva Ursi, Wormwood.

Antineoplastic
Having the specific action of inhibiting and combating tumor development.
Chaparral Leaf, Cleavers, Red Clover, Reishi, St. John’s Wort, Shiitake.

Antiseptic

Herbs that can be applied to the skin to prevent and resist bacterial growth.
Bilberry, Black Walnut, Chamomile, Chaparral Leaf, Cloves, Echinacea, Elecampane, Eyebright, Gentian Root, Golden Seal, Horseradish, Myrrh, Oregon Grape, Parsley, Queen of the Meadow, Red Clover, Sage, Sarsaparilla, Schizandra, Thyme, Uva Ursi, White Oak Bark, White Willow, Witch Hazel, Wormwood, Yarrow.

Antispasmodic

Antispasmodics can prevent or ease spasms and cramps in the body.
Black Cohosh,, Blue Cohosh, Blue Vervain, Boneset, Calamus, Chamomile, Cramp bark, Dill, Dong Quai, Fennel, Garlic, Hope, Hyssop, Lady’s Slipper, Licorice, Lobelia, Motherwort, Mullein, Oat Straw, Passion Flower, Pennyroyal, Pleurisy Root, Red Clover, St. John’s Root, Scullcap, Thyme, Valerian, Wild Yam.

Aphrodisiac

Herbs used to stimulate sexual potency and passion.
Angelica, Astragalus, Damiana, False Unicorn, Ginseng, Kava Kava, Muira Puama, Schizandra, Suma, Yohimbe.

Aromatic

Herbs that have a strong and often pleasant odor and can stimulate the digestive juices.
Angelica, Anise Seed, Catnip, Celery Seed, Chamomile, Cloves, Fennel, Feverfew, Garlic, Ginger, Ho-Shou-Wu, Juniper, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Sarsaparilla, Thyme, Valerian, Yerba Santa.

Astringent

Astringents contract tissue and can reduce secretions and discharges.
Agrimony, Bayberry, Bilberry, Blessed Thistle, Blue Vervain, Butcher’s Broom, Calendula, Cleavers, Coltsfoot, Comfrey, Cordyceps, Cramp bark ,Cyani Flowers, Eyebright, Garcinia, Hops, Golden Seal, Hops, Male Fern, Muira Puama, Myrrh, Nettle, Periwinkle, Queen of the Meadow, Saw Palmetto, Schizandra, Slippery Elm, Squawvine, St. John's Wort, Stone Root, Suma, Uva Ursi, White Oak Bark, Wild Cherry Bark, Witch Hazel, Wood Betony, Yarrow, Yellow Dock, Yucca.

Bitter

Herbs that taste bitter act as stimulating tonics for the digestive system.
Barberry, Blessed Thistle, Burdock, Catnip, Chamomile, Chaparral Leaf, Coltsfoot, Dong Quai, Elecampane, Eyebright, Feverfew, Gentian Root, Golden Seal, Hops, Ho-Shou-Wu, Hydrangea, Schizandra, Wormwood, Yellow Dock.

Cardiac Tonic

Cardiac tonics are herbs that act beneficially on the heart.
Cayenne , Cat's Claw, Guggul, Hawthorn, Hops, Kelp, Motherwort, Myrrh, Reishi, Siberian Ginseng.

Carminative

Carminatives are rich in volatile oils and expel gas from the stomach and bowels.
Angelica, Catnip, Chamomile, Cloves, Dill, Elecampane, Fennel, Feverfew, Garlic, Ginger, Hops, Hyssop, Juniper, Motherwort, Pennyroyal, Pleurisy Root, Prickly Ash, Queen of the Meadow, Thyme, Valerian, Wild Yam, Wormwood, Yarrow, Yerba Santa.

Cathartic

In large doses cathartics purge the bowels and stimulate glandular secretions.
Barberry, Cascara Sagrada, Hydrangea, Mandrake, Rhubarb, Senna, Yellow Dock.

Cholagogue

Herbs that stimulate the release and secretion of bile from the gall bladder. They also have a laxative effect on the digestive system.
Barberry, Calendula, Dandelion, Gentian Root, Golden Seal, Mandrake, Milk Thistle, Oregon Grape, Wild Yam, Yellow Dock.

Demulcent

Herbs that are usually rich in mucilage and can soothe and protect damaged or inflamed tissue.
Chickweed, Coltsfoot, Comfrey, Cornsilk, Fenugreek ,Garcinia, Irish Moss, Kelp, Licorice, Marshmallow, Milk Thistle, Mullein, Oat Straw, Psyllium, Pumpkin Seeds, Slippery Elm, Suma.

Depurative

Depuratives are herbs that remove impurities and cleanse the blood.
Black Walnut, Blessed Thistle, Burdock, Dandelion, Elderberry, Garlic, Gotu Kola, Oregon Grape, Pau d'Arco, Red Clover, Sarsaparilla, Watercress, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.

Diaphoretic

These herbs will aid the skin in the elimination of toxins through perspiration.
Angelica, Blessed Thistle, Black Cohosh, Blue Vervain, Boneset, Butcher’s Broom, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Elecampane, , Fennel, Garlic, Ginger, Passion Flower, Peppermint, Pleurisy Root, Prickly Ash, Sage, Sarsaparilla, White Willow, Yarrow.

Diuretic

Herbs that increase the flow of urine and help in the removal of toxins from the system.
Alfalfa, Astragalus, Bilberry, Blue Vervain ,Buchu, Burdock, Butcher’s Broom, Cleavers, Cornsilk, Cyani Flowers, Dandelion, Dill, Dong Quai, Elecampane, False Unicorn, Fennel, Golden Seal, Gotu Kola, Gravel Root, Hawthorn, Juniper, Marshmallow, Nettle, Parsley, Parthenium, Pleurisy Root, Prickly Ash, Red Clover, Safflower, Sarsaparilla, Saw Palmetto, Squawvine, Uva Ursi, White Willow, Yarrow.

Emetic

Emetics are herbs that cause vomiting when taken in specific doses (generally high doses).
Calamus, Elecampane, False Unicorn (in large doses), Lobelia, Mandrake, Poke root.

Emmenagogue

Herbs that stimulate and normalize the menstrual flow.
Black Cohosh, Blessed Thistle, Blue Cohosh, Blue Vervain, Butcher’s Broom, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Cramp Bark, Dong Quai, False Unicorn, Fennel, Fenugreek, Feverfew, Ginger, Golden Seal, Hope, Lobelia, Motherwort, Myrrh, Pennyroyal, Prickly Ash, Squawvine, St. John's Wort, Valerian, Vitex, Wormwood, Yarrow .

Emollient

Herbs that are applied to the skin to soften, soothe, or protect it.
Coltsfoot, Comfrey, Fenugreek, Flaxseed, Irish Moss, Kelp, Marshmallow, Mullein, Slippery Elm.

Expectorant

Herbs that assist the body in expelling excess mucous from the respiratory system.
Anise Seed, Blue Vervain, Calamus, Chaparral Leaf, Chickweed, Coltsfoot, Comfrey, Cordyceps, Elecampane, Fennel, Fenugreek, Garlic, Golden Seal, Horehound, Hyssop, Licorice, Ma Huang, Marshmallow, Mullein, Myrrh, Nettle, Pleurisy Root, Red Clover, Reishi, Schizandra, Slippery Elm, Thyme, Wild Cherry Bark, Yerba Santa.

Febrifuge

The febrifuges help the body to bring down fevers.
Angelica, Blessed Thistle, Boneset, Calendula, Cayenne, Gotu Kola, Lobelia, Peppermint, Prickly Ash, Rose Hips, Sage, Scullcap, White Willow, Wormwood.

Galactogogue

Herbs that help breast-feeding mothers increase the flow of mothers milk.
Blessed Thistle, Blue Vervain, Dill, Fennel, Fenugreek, Horsetail, Marshmallow, Milk Thistle, Nettle , Vervain.

Hepatic

Hepatics strengthen and tone the liver as well as stimulate the flow of bile.
Barberry, Cascara Sagrada, Celery Seed, Cleavers, Dandelion, Fennel, Golden Seal, Mandrake, Milk Thistle, Motherwort, Oregon Grape, Prickly Ash, Wild Yam, Wormwood, Yarrow, Yellow Dock.

Hypnotic

Hypnotic herbs will help induce sleep (not a hypnotic trance).
Hops, Passion Flower, Lady’s Slipper, Scullcap, Valerian.

Hypotensive
Remedies that reduce elevated blood pressure.
Astragalus, Cat's Claw, Hawthorn, Hops, Reishi, Valerian, Yarrow.

Laxative

Herbs that promote the evacuation of the bowels.
Barberry, Boneset, Burdock, Butcher’s Broom, Cascara Sagrada, Cleavers, Dandelion, Golden Seal, Licorice, Oregon Grape, Senna, Rhubarb, Yellow Dock.

Mucilage

Mucilaginous herbs contain gelatinous constituents and will often be demulcent.
Fenugreek, Flax Seed, Irish Moss, Kelp, Marshmallow, Parthenium, Psyllium, Slippery Elm.

Nervine

Herbs that strengthen and tone the nervous system, easing anxiety and stress.
Black Cohosh, Blue Cohosh, Blue Vervain, Catnip, Chamomile, Cramp bark, Damiana, Feverfew, Ginkgo, Ginseng, Hops, Jamaican Dogwood, Lady’s Slipper, Motherwort, Oat Straw, Passion Flower, Periwinkle, Red Clover, Scullcap, Valerian, Wild Cherry Bark, Wormwood.

Oxytocic

Herbs that stimulate the contraction of the urerus.
Blue Cohosh, Dong Quai, Golden Seal, Red Raspberry, Squaw Vine.

Parasiticide

\Herbs that can kill parasites in the digestive tract and on the skin.
Black Walnut, Blue Vervain, Chaparral Leaf, Cloves, Elecampane, Feverfew, Gentian Root, Pumpkin Seeds, Wormwood.

Pectoral

Herbs that have a general strengthening and healing effect on the respiratory system.
Angelica, Chickweed, Coltsfoot, Comfrey, Elecampane, Golden Seal, Licorice, Marshmallow, Mullein, Slippery Elm.

Purgative

Can produce very strong laxative effects and watery evacuations.
Aloe Vera, Cascara Sagrada, Rhubarb, Senna, Yellow Dock .

Rubefacient

Herbs that simulate circulation locally when applied to the skin.
Capsicum, Cloves, Fennel, Ginger, Horseradish, Nettle, Peppermint, Prickly Ash.

Sedative

Herbs that can strongly quiet the nervous system.
Black Cohosh, Bugleweed, Catnip, Celery Seed, Chamomile, Cramp Bark, Hops, Kava Kava, Lady’s Slipper, Lobelia, Motherwort, Passion Flower, Periwinkle, Red Clover, Saw Palmetto, Scullcap, St. John's Wort, Valerian, Wild Yam.

Sialagogue

Herbs that stimulate the secretion of saliva from the salivary glands. Cayenne , Gentian Root, Ginger, Horseradish, Licorice, Prickly Ash, Rhubarb.

Stimulant

Herbs that quicken and enliven the physiological function of the body.
Angelica, Bayberry, Calamus, Calendula, Catnip, Cayenne, Cloves, Dandelion, Elecampane, False Unicorn, Fennel, Feverfew, Ginger, Ginkgo, Ma Huang, Muira Puama, Myrrh, Prickly Ash, Sarsaparilla, Schizandra, Valerian, Wild Yam, Wormwood, Yarrow.

Stomachic

Herbs that promote digestion and strengthen the stomach.
Catnip, Chamomile, Chickweed, Cloves, Elecampane, Fennel, Gentian Root, Ginger, Golden Seal, Papaya, Peppermint, Red Raspberry, Rhubarb, Wood Betony, Yerba Santa.

Tonic

The tonic herbs strengthen and tone either specific organs or the whole body through nutritional stimulation.
Alfalfa, Angelica, Ashwagandha, Astragalus, Black Cohosh, Black Walnut, Boneset, Burdock, Calendula, Catnip, Cat's Claw, Cayenne, Chamomile, Cleavers, Coltsfoot, Cordyceps, Cyani Flowers, Damiana, Dandelion, Echinacea, Elecampane, Fenugreek, Garlic, Gentian Root, Ginger, Siberian Ginseng, Golden Seal, Gotu Kola, Hawthorn, Hops, Ho-Shou-Wu, Hydrangea, Licorice, Male Fern, Milk Thistle, Motherwort, Muira Puama, Myrrh, Nettle, Oregon Grape, Poke root, Prickly Ash, Red Clover, Red Raspberry, Sarsaparilla, Saw Palmetto, Schizandra, Sheep Sorrel, Skullcap, Squawvine, Spirulina, Suma, Uva Ursi, Watercress, Wild Yam, Wormwood, Yarrow, Yellow Dock, Yohimbe.

Vulnerary

Herbs that help promote healing of external wounds and cuts.
Aloe Vera, Calendula, Chickweed, Comfrey, Elder Flower, Golden Seal, Horsetail, Hyssop, Male Fern, Marshmallow, Mullein, Myrrh, Plantain, Rhubarb, Sage, St. John’s Wort, Slippery Elm, Wood Betony.

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