Allergy: Ephedra

Anesthetic: Aloe Vera

Anodyne: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow, Catnip

Antibacterial: Aloe Vera

Antibiotic: St. John's Wort

Antiseptic: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow

Antidepressant: St. John's Wort, Ginkgo

Anti-inflammatory: St. John's Wort

Antiperiodic: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow

Antipyretic: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow

Antiseptic: Aloe Vera

Antispasmodic: St. John's Wort, Catnip, Black Cohosh

Antiviral:  Echinacea, Goldenseal

Aphrodisiac: Catnip

Appetite Suppressant: Ephedra

Aromatic: Catnip

Arthritis/Rheumatism: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow, Black Cohosh

Asthma: Ephedra

Astringent: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow, Raspberry, St. John's Wort, Catnip, Black Cohosh

Blood Pressure (reduction of): Black Cohosh

Blood Pressure (stimulant): Ephedra, St. John's Wort

Bronchial Support: Ephedra, Catnip

Bruises: St. John's Wort

Burns: St. John's Wort, Aloe Vera

Cardiovascular: Ephedra, Black Cohosh

Childbirth: Raspberry

Circulatory: Ginkgo

Colds/Flu: Citrus, Rose Hips, Echinacea, Goldenseal

Consumption: Black Cohosh

Cough: Sallow

Diarrhea: Raspberry, Aloe Vera, Catnip

Diuretic: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow, Black Cohosh

Emollient: Aloe Vera

Estrogenic: Black Cohosh

Expectorant: St. John's Wort, Ephedra, Black Cohosh

Eyes: Aloe Vera

Fatigue: Black Cohosh

Fever: Purple Willow (actually, any willow will help.)

Febrifuge: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow

Flatulence: Catnip

Gynecological: Black Cohosh, Ginkgo

Hayfever: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow, Ephedra

Headache/Migraine: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, PurpleWillow,  Sallow

Immune System: Echinacea, Goldenseal, Willow, Catnip

Indigestion: Sallow

Insomnia: St. John's Wort, Catnip

Kidney Stones: (see urinary tract)

Laxative: Aloe Vera

Memory/Concentration: Ginkgo

Menopause: Ginkgo,  St. John's Wort, Black Cohosh

Menstruation (promotion of): St. John's Wort, Catnip

Mental Alertness: Ginkgo

Metabolism: Ephedra

Miscarriage (prevention of): Raspberry

Miscarriage (stimulation of): Aloe Vera

Nausea: Raspberry

Nervine: St. John's Wort

Pain: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow

Poison Ivy, Oak, and Sumac: Aloe Vera

Pregnancy Aid: Raspberry

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS): Ginkgo, St. John's Wort

Prostrate: Black Cohosh

Purgative: Aloe Vera

Respiratory: Ephedra

Sedative: Black Cohosh

Sleep (suppression of): Ephedra

Smoking (quitting): St. John's Wort

Sore Throat: Black Cohosh

Stomachache: St. John's Wort, Catnip

Stress: St. John's Wort

Sunburn: St. John's Wort, Aloe Vera

Tonic: Willow, White Willow, Black Willow, Purple Willow, Sallow

Ulcers: Aloe Vera

Whooping Cough: Black Cohosh

 

Herbs and the Digestion

Many of us experience digestive problems. Some of us only occasionally after a food-binge or perhaps a careless selection of menu items.  Others suffer on a regular basis, seems no matter what we eat (or donít eat) our digestive system assails us continuously. There are many herbs that have been used over the years to help ease digestive complaints.  Some are quite effective and some not so.

 

One point of concern, however, if you are experiencing recurring digestive problems of any kind, itís best to see a doctor or professional health care practitioner for a diagnosis.  It may only be excess stomach acid and the doctor might prescribe an ant-acid, or it could be something quite serious and need professional medical attention.

 

Occasional Indigestion

For occasional upset tummies, very often an infusion of chamomile (which is a member of the ragweed family, so those who are allergic to ragweed should exercise caution), fennel seed, or peppermint, either singly or in combination will ease the temporary discomfort. Papaya leaf has been useful in correcting under-acidity, whereas anise seed may relieve over-acidity. One herbalist recommends sprinkling cayenne pepper liberally over your food, or alternately using cayenne in capsules.  I know this sounds crazy, but it really does help in many cases.  A good rule of thumb to follow when making herbal infusions is 1 to 1-Ĺ teaspoons of herb to 8 ounces of boiling water. Pour the water over the herb and allow to steep for 10-15 minutes.

 

A nice combination that usually settles indigestion quickly is 1 tsp. each of fennel seed, aniseed, coriander seed and caraway seed. Mix these together and take 1 tsp. of the mixture, and bruise well (bruising consists of putting the herbs into a mortar and crushing slightly with the pestle). Pour 1 cup of boiling water over all, cover and let steep until cool. Tasty, too!

 

Now, on to the more serious stuff. Remember, these conditions are nothing to be ignored. Be sure to visit your health care practitioner whenever needed.

 

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Many people suffer from this condition, twice as many women as men.  Some scientists believe that a virus or bacteria may have something to do with this disorder. Others attribute it to stress and diet, the overuse of antibiotics, ant-acids or laxatives.  Whatever the cause, there are several herbs that can play a role in easing the condition.

 

Alfalfa (yep, the stuff that horses and cows eat) is a good source of Vitamin K which helps contribute intestinal flora for good digestion, and chlorophyll for cleansing the blood. This can be drunk as a tea or taken in capsule form. Alfalfa is also an excellent source of most vitamins and minerals. Soothing the nerves that control muscle activity in the intestine can be very important in easing the symptoms of this disorder. Skullcap and valerian are two herbs that can be quite beneficial.

 

A nice combination for Irritable bowel might be: 2 parts Bayberry, 1 part Mugwort, 2 parts Chamomile, 2 parts Peppermint, 1 part Wild Yam and 1 part Valerian or Skullcap. Mix well, pour 1 cup boiling water over 1 to 1-Ĺ tsp. of the mixture, cover and let steep 10-15 minutes.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome has two extreme varieties, spastic colon and mucous colitis. Symptoms of spastic colon run the gamut between constipation and diarrhea, which is often brought on by eating. In Mucous Colitis, the colon secretes unusually large amounts of mucus, which appears in the stools.

 

Constipation

A gentle, effective mixture that avoids problems of laxative dependency can be made by combining 2 parts yellow dock, 1 part dandelion root, and 1 part aniseed. A decoction can be made with 2 tsp. of the mixture to 1 cup water may be drunk 3 times a day. Diarrhea is usually responsive to an infusion of Meadowsweet, however, this herb contains salicylic acid, so those who cannot take aspirin should avoid this herb. In instances where Meadowsweet isnít indicated, Oak Bark or Slippery Elm might be used instead.

 

Diverticulitis/Diverticulosis

This condition is characterized by the development of pouches in the colon wall (diverticulosis). Much of the time these pouches cause little or no trouble, however waste matter can become trapped in these pouches triggering inflammation and infection (diverticulitis) and possible perforation can occur. This can be an extremely serious condition if left untreated. If you suspect that you may have a diverticulitis or diverticulosis, please seek medical attention. There are herbs that can be used in adjunct with medical care.   Wild yam, which is an anti-spasmodic and an anti-inflammatory, has been shown in many studies to be quite specific for this condition. A mixture of 2 parts wild yam, 1 part valerian or skullcap, 1 part cramp bark and 1 part peppermint might be useful to help relieve the symptoms.

 

Gastritis

This is an inflammation of the stomach lining. Gastritis can be acute (usually only lasting a short time), or chronic (recurring or lasting a long time). Acute gastritis many times can be controlled by diet.  Avoiding anything that is an irritant is the first step.  Things like very hot or cold food or drink, vinegar, aspirin, alcohol, tobacco, steroids and many drugs.  Symptoms may include appetite loss, nausea, vomiting and discomfort after eating.  In instances of chronic gastritis, it is more likely that something else is wrong, like an ulcer. If you are experiencing chronic gastritis, you should seek professional medical care.

 

The following combination may help soothe and heal the stomach lining: 2 parts comfrey root, 2 parts marshmallow root, 1 part meadowsweet, 1 part chamomile and 1 part golden seal root. Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 2 tsp. of the mixture, allow to steep 10-15 minutes. May be drunk 3 times a day.