Long before there were doctors and nurses, herbs were used for medicinal purposes. Herbal medicine can’t replace conventional medicine – especially in life-threatening situations – but it has proven to be highly effective and affordable for dealing with the prevention and treatment of day-to-day, non-emergency health issues. —
According to a recent article in the Burlington (Vermont) Free Press, local farmers are saying that the nation’s demand for organic herbs is outpacing local production. Local organic farmers Melanie and Jeff Carpenter say they’ve built their medicinal herb business from 100 pounds 16 years ago to two tons today.
Below is a list of 10 medicinal herbs and some of the conditions they are said to treat.
Anise – It has been suggested to use Anise as a diuretic and/or a laxative. It has been used to treat menstrual cramps and to prevent the formation of gas in the gastrointestinal tract. It’s said to make one’s breath fresher and to reduce pain.
Chamomile – This herb is said to be effective in controlling nervousness, insomnia, nausea, earache, asthma, headaches, fevers, arthritis and hay fever. It also works on indigestion, heartburn, gas, diarrhea, upper respiratory irritation and teething pain in babies.
Lemon Balm – Reported to be effective against stress, depression and anxiety, it also serves as a decongestant to aid with colds, flu and sore throats, and as a muscle relaxer to help with menstrual cramps. Lemon Balm is used by allergy sufferers and by those who suffer from shingles.
Borage – This herb is credited with treating ailments such as respiratory viruses, colds, flu, dry cough, sore throat, bronchitis, asthma, stress and menopausal symptoms. It is reported to help with arthritis, rheumatism, joint pain and bowel diseases.
Catnip – Used in capsules, teas and tinctures, this herb has been thought to be a remedy for diarrhea, upset stomach, gas, nausea, hiccups, stomach cramps and indigestion. Catnip leaves contain antioxidant vitamins, making it helpful for treating colds.
Cayenne Pepper – This herb is a circulatory stimulant to strengthen heart and blood vessels while lowering cholesterol. It is said to aid in weight loss; regulate blood sugar; reduce colds, fevers, flus and sore throats; dull pain; and serve as a laxative.
Echinacea – Studies suggest this herb sparks the immune system, relieves pain, reduces inflammation, and has hormonal, antiviral and antioxidant effects. It’s recommended to treat urinary tract infections, vaginal yeast infections, athlete’s foot, hay fever, boils, burns and ulcers.
Hyssop – This herb is used for upper respiratory ailments and infections. It’s brewed into a tea to help fight colds, sinusitis, bronchitis, asthma, influenza, laryngitis, tonsillitis and coughs. Users report that it helps with shortness of breath and wheezing.
Nettle – Containing antihistamines and anti-inflammatories, Nettle opens bronchial and nasal passages. It’s been used to deal with asthma, bronchitis and pneumonia. It’s also been reported to be effective in reducing blood pressure and aiding swollen prostate glands.
Yarrow – This herb is reported to stop bleeding when you chew the leaves, or crush the leaves and flowers and press them against the wound. It’s said to be helpful for poor circulation, congestion, asthma and depression. Topically, Yarrow can be used for wounds and rashes.
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