7 herbs you could start using today

Have you planted a medicinal herb garden yet? They’re becoming more and more popular. It used to be that when patients would mention using herbs for medicinal purposes, their doctors would laugh at them. Now the medical community has a much deeper respect for this ancient way to prevent and treat illnesses and injuries.

As I’ve mentioned before, don’t try to use herbs in place of conventional medicine for serious and life-threatening situations. But when it comes to day-to-day, non-emergency health issues including headaches, colds, coughs, aches, bruises and many more ailments, herbs can be highly effective.

Here are seven more of my favorite medicinal herbs.

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. Borage is also good for skin problems and aids with depression while reducing blood pressure and cholesterol.

Catnip – Used in capsules, teas and tinctures, this herb has been found 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. It can be used in a compress for tonsillitis and toothache, and topically for skin sores and hemorrhoids.

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. As a topical cream, Cayenne Pepper can help with arthritis, bursitis, muscle and joint pain, and shingles.

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. Echinacea has been called an important immune-enhancing herb.

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. Hyssop has a regulating effect on blood pressure, raising it if it’s too low and lowering it if it’s too high.

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 effective in reducing blood pressure; aiding swollen prostate glands; helping maintain kidney and liver function; and topically treating wounds, stings, bites and rashes.

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, scrapes, rashes, nosebleeds, hemorrhoids, poison ivy, varicose veins and toothaches.

What herbs have you found to be effective, and which conditions have you treated with them?

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