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A Guide to Common Herbs

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Herbs are nutritional foundation nutrients and good alternative medicine to nourish the body's deepest and most basic elements. Medicinal herbs have been used safely and effectively since the time of recorded history for an endless list of reasons from health, healing, weight loss/gain/maintenance, to survival and more. Herbs can offer the body nutrients it does not always receive, either from a poor diet, or environmental deficiencies in the soil and air. They are great body balancers that help regulate body functions.

The benefits of herbs are many and varied. Even the once skeptical traditional medical community is starting to embrace alternative medicine practices using herbal remedies and healing philosophies and practices incorporating herbal medicine and medicinal herbs. Chinese herbs have been used by the Chinese for over 4,000 years to promote health and as healing agents.

Chinese Herbs are taken as tonics to enhance physical and mental well being. Since the dawn of man, herbs have been used for healing purposes and to promote wellness. Today, herbs are still the alternative medicine and primary source of health care for 80% of the world.

Here are some of the more well-known herbs and plant products and their modern uses.

Herbs Modern Uses
Bilberry Fruit Extract, Vaccinium myrtillus Various microcirculatory conditions. Night blindness and poor ability to adapt to bright light.

Cascara Sagrada Aged Bark, Rhamnus purshiana Constipation.

Cayenne Pepper Fruit, Capsicum annuum Carminative, diaphoretic, counter-irritant.

Cranberry Fruit, Vaccinium macrocarpon Prevention of urinary tract infections.

Dong Quai Root, Angelica sinensis Various menstrual disorders.

Echinacea Herb, Echinacea purpurea As supportive therapy for colds and chronic infections of the respiratory tract.

Evening Primrose Oil, Oenothera biennis Conditions related to deficiency of essential fatty acids (e.g., chronic fatigue syndrome) and alcoholism.

Feverfew Leaf, Tanacetum parthenium Treatment of migraines, fever, menstrual disorders..

Garlic Cloves, Allium sativum Elevated levels of cholesterol in blood and as a preventative measure for age dependent vascular changes.

Ginger Root, Zingiber officinale Modern Use: Prevention of the nausea and vomiting of motion sickness, dyspepsia, stomachic.

Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, Ginkgo biloba Memory deficits, dementia syndromes. Improvement of distance and pain-free walking in peripheral arterial occlusive disease. Vertigo and tinnitus.

Asian Ginseng Root, Panax ginseng Tonic for invigoration and fortification in times of fatigue and debility, physical or mental exhaustion, stress, inadequate resistance to infections.

Siberian Ginseng Root, Eleutherococcus senticosus Tonic for invigoration and fortification in times of fatigue and debility, also during convalescence.

Goldenseal Root, Hydrastis canadensis Catarrhal conditions of the upper respiratory tract associated with colds and flus. Mucosal inflammations.

Gotu Kola Herb, Centella asiatica Improved memory. Venous insufficiency.

Grape Seed Extract, Vitis vinifera Microcirculatory maldistribution of blood flow. Altered capillary fragility and permeability. Anti-inflammatory.

Green Tea Leaf Extract, Camellia sinensis Chemopreventative. Hypercholesterolemia.

Kava Kava Root Extract, Piper methysticum Conditions of nervous anxiety, stress, and restlessness. Sedative and sleep enhancement.

Licorice Root, Glycyrrhiza glabra For catarrhal conditions of the upper respiratory tract and gastric/duodenal ulcers. Bronchitis. Adrenocorticoid insufficiency.

Milk Thistle Seed Extract, Silybum marianum Toxic liver damage, and for supportive treatment in chronic inflammatory liver disease and hepatic cirrhosis.

Saw Palmetto Berry Extract, Serenoa repens Urination problems in benign prostate hyperplasia stages 1 and 2.

St. John's Wort Herb Extract, Hypericum perforatum Mild to moderate depressive states.

Valerian Root, Valeriana officinalis Restlessness, sleeping disorders based on nervous conditions.

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