Medicinal plants - A large group of plants, parts of which serve as raw materials for obtaining drugs. These include those in which at least one of the parts contains a therapeutic agent.
Medicinal plants are used in folk and traditional medicine for preventive and therapeutic purposes.
There is an erroneous opinion that medicinal plants are used exclusively in traditional medicine, but if you look at the composition of any of the preparations, most of them contain natural components. Today, more than 350 thousand plant species are recognized as medicinal.
The use of herbs
A medicinal plant must contain one or more useful substances, but it is not always distributed evenly in the culture itself. You need to know which part of the plant is used for treatment and what is useful. Also, a number of herbs have useful properties only in a certain period, for example, during the flowering period, or even before flowering, you need to collect and dry the leaves.
Herbs are used as raw materials for the manufacture of preparations for internal and external use.
For internal use, decoctions, infusions, tinctures based on essential oils and alcohol are prepared. The plant is used both fresh and in dry condition.
For external treatment, ointments, tinctures, compresses, various herbal baths are prepared.
Some herbs are used as seasoning in cooking, prepare salads, eaten raw. All this brings a beneficial effect to the body.
In medicine, juice from freshly squeezed leaves and stem is often used.
Depending on the variety, all parts of the plant may be useful, as well as some (seeds, root, stem, leaves, flowers).
Classification of medicinal plants
Medicinal plants are classified into 3 main groups.
Official medicinal plants are varieties that are allowed in the country for the preparation of medicinal products.
Pharmacopoeia - officially allowed, but subject to special requirements.
Traditional medicine plants are plant species whose therapeutic actions are not officially confirmed at the country level, or the species are little studied by science. But this does not mean that the plant does not have medicinal properties, perhaps in another country it is officially confirmed. This group includes the largest number of species and requires an individual approach in each individual case.
The chemical composition of medicinal plants
The composition of various herbs includes a number of those or other useful substances that are essential for the human body. For a positive effect, the plant should contain biologically active substances.
Important active nutrients:
- organic matter
- amino acids
- essential oils
- organic acids
- folic acid
A separate group is occupied by vitamins: C (ascorbic acid), a group of vitamins B (B1, B2, B3, B6, B9, B12), vitamin D, A, E.
Collection and harvesting of raw materials
For a positive effect, you need to know when and how to collect herbs for further drying and harvesting. It is necessary to collect only healthy plants during the period of active ripening. Young undeveloped species are ineffective, like the old ones due to the large amount of fiber. The collection site is of great importance. Choose the most environmentally friendly zones, do not pick flowers along the railways and highways, near megacities and large enterprises. Choose wild grasses along the forest and on the banks of the rivers. Medicinal plants are those that grow in the wild, and not grown in botanical gardens.
Basic rules for harvesting herbs:
- Tear off ripe and healthy grass without roots.
- Tear off only part of the leaves from one plant, otherwise it will lead to its death.
- Cut roots only from chopped trees and bushes.
- Each medicinal plant has its own collection period and certain parts.
- The buds are harvested during their ripening in early spring, as soon as they begin to swell, before growth begins.
- The bark is cut in the spring during the movement of the juices.
- Blossoms and leaves are plucked during the period of active flowering.
- Seeds and fruits are harvested in the fall after ripening.
- The roots are cut in late autumn, when the plant goes into a dormant period.
When collecting, be sure to use gloves and be careful not to get juice or pollen in your eyes, on exposed skin or mucous membranes.
Drying is carried out in a well-ventilated and dry room, protecting from direct sunlight. You will find details about harvesting and drying in the articles for a certain type of plant.
Healing herbs with photos from A to Z
Herbal treatment is the most ancient way to deal with all kinds of diseases. Over the thousands of years of its existence, man has found and studied the healing properties of hundreds of medicinal plants that can help with this or another disease. Over a long history, many effective recipes have been created, many of which have come and are used in traditional medicine today.
This section of the site presents many types of medicinal herbs, including field species, with high-quality photographs, the name of each plant and a detailed description of their beneficial properties and methods of application.
Despite the tremendous pace of development of traditional medicine and all the new products offered by the pharmaceutical industry, the use of medicinal plants for the treatment of various diseases, it remains relevant and does not lose its popularity. They can be used both for prevention and for the treatment of various chronic and acute diseases in any field of medicine.
Medicinal herbs used in folk medicine can be fresh or dried, used both externally and internally. Medicinal herbs are significantly safer for human health than pharmaceuticals. They have less contraindications and side effects on the body.
For treatment use:
Despite the apparent simplicity and harmlessness, alternative treatment requires knowledge and caution. After all, for a positive result, medicinal raw materials must be correctly collected. And tinctures, decoctions made from them, or extracts are prepared only according to exact recipes. Do not forget about the dosages. This is especially true for those drugs that need to be taken orally.
It is advisable, before preparing a medicine from herbs, to study our website, which lists medicinal herbs photos with names, to find out about the indications and contraindications of a particular medicinal plant, and methods of their preparation. We must not forget to carefully examine the raw materials for the medicine itself. It should not have mold, dirt and other defects.
It is recommended that you consult your doctor before using medicinal herbs. Remember, improper use of medicinal herbs can be harmful to your health.
Oregano is perhaps the most popular herb, which is used in various fields. Therefore, oregano (growing from seeds) appears in many gardens, on balconies. (Further…)
Everyone heard about oregano. This is a very famous herb. Consider what is oregano, its medicinal properties and contraindications for women. (Further…)
Herbs are often used in folk medicine. They will not only help get rid of many diseases, but also support the beauty and peace of mind. Oregano is especially popular.
There is probably not a single person who has never heard of oregano. But there is another name for it - oregano. Oregano and oregano are.
In Russia, many types of clover grow. The most popular is clover white and medicinal yellow. It is useful not only the plant, but also its honey. (Further…)
For the treatment of colds, people began to use folk remedies more often. Especially useful are herbs. Elecampane cough helps; how to take it, we will consider in more detail.
Pelargonium is considered an unpretentious plant. It is grown in flowerbeds and potted houses. Many of its varieties tolerate winter well and bloom profusely. Still necessary.
In the spring, many gardeners think about how to decorate flowerbeds in front of the house and garden plots. This will help clove grass perennial: planting and caring for the plant are simple, as well.
Just recently, geraniums stood on the windowsill in almost every house. This unpretentious beauty has many types, will decorate any home. Recently, people began to doubt.
Carnation is a beautiful perennial plant. Few people know, but its flowers are edible and are used to decorate cakes. Clove (see photo) has many types. (Further…)
Medicinal plants - description
Medicinal plants are divided into three categories:
- officinal medicinal plants - those from the raw materials of which the manufacture of medicinal products is allowed. These species are listed in the State Register of Medicines,
- Pharmacopoeia medicinal plants are official plants, the requirements for which are set forth in the State Pharmacopoeia or in international pharmacopoeias,
- medicinal plants of traditional medicine is the widest category, most of which are not adequately described, and information on the effectiveness of the plants that make up this category has not been verified by pharmacological means.
The main methods of using medicinal plants are to obtain from them medicinal products for external or internal use. Such plants contain at least one substance with healing properties, and this substance or substances are unevenly distributed over the organs of the plant, therefore, when collecting plants, you need to know in which parts the beneficial elements are concentrated and during which growing season their concentration is maximum.
Inside, water and water-alcohol infusions and decoctions are used, as well as oil extracts in the form of tinctures and extracts. For external use, herbal baths, wraps, compresses and lotions are used.
We will tell you about medicinal plants that can be grown in any garden.
Amaranth, or shiritsa (lat. Amaranthus). This is an annual herbaceous plant, reaching a height of 20 to 100 cm. Medicinal species are amaranth such as white, spiky (thrown back, bent), tailed and panicled (crimson). Outwardly, they differ from each other, but their healing properties are similar.
Amaranth grass is harvested in July-August during the flowering period and dried in the air under a canopy. Shiritsu is used as a hemostatic agent for excessive menstrual or hemorrhoidal bleeding. In the first case, amaranth infusion is used inside, as with bloody diarrhea, in the second case, lotions from amaranth infusion are prescribed. Due to the laxative and antispasmodic action of the thyroid gut, intestinal colic and chronic constipation are eliminated.
Shiritsa infusion: 3 full tablespoons (with a slide) of chopped leaves of the thyme are poured with a liter of boiling water, insisted in a warm place for 3-4 hours and filtered. Use from a third to half a glass 3-4 times a day for half an hour before meals with tumors, asthenic conditions, chronic cystitis and pyelonephritis, hemorrhoids and after abdominal operations. The course of treatment is 21 days.
Shiritsa tincture: a glass jar is filled into two-thirds with flowering tops or chopped dry amaranth leaves, poured vodka to the top, corked and insisted in a warm and dark place. Then it is filtered and taken 3-4 times a day 20 minutes before meals, diluting a teaspoon of tincture in a quarter cup of boiled water. Indications: adolescent enuresis, inflammatory processes of the genitourinary system, weight deficiency, low blood pressure, senile weakness.
Amaranth oil: ripened amaranth seeds are ground in a mortar, mixed with olive oil in a ratio of 1: 3, heated in a water bath to 60 ºC, left in a thermos overnight, filtered, squeezed out and filled with new powder from the seeds ground in a mortar. Repeat the manipulation of heating in a water bath and infusion in a thermos 4-5 times, after which the medicine is stored in the top of a filled glass dish in the refrigerator. Amaranth oil is used orally half an hour before meals, 1-2 teaspoon three times a day for menopause, elevated cholesterol, atherosclerosis, gastric and duodenal ulcers, malignant tumors, cholecystitis, and after irradiation. To undergo one course of treatment, you need 250 g of oil. If necessary, you can spend three courses of treatment with a break of a month.
Common Basil (lat.Ocimum basilicum), he is fragrant, camphor and garden - An annual herbaceous plant with fragrant leaves. In India, basil is a sacred plant, from the stems of which the rosary is made. Ayurveda adherents claim that the energy of the basil has stabilizing and soothing properties that cleanse the psychological atmosphere and help to feel the support of higher forces that give a person confidence. In addition to the garden basil, for medicinal purposes they also use mint leaf basil (lat.Ocimum menthifolium).
Medicinal properties are possessed by the leaves of ordinary basil, which are harvested before flowering, and fruits ripening by autumn. The mint leafy basil for the extraction of camphor-rich essential oil uses the ground part - leaves, stems without lower lignified areas, flowers and leaves. Grass of this species is harvested several times during the summer.
Common basil is recommended for cystitis, whooping cough, pyelitis with the phenomena of dysuria and kidney disease. Fresh juice of the plant is indicated for difficult wounds and purulent inflammation of the middle ear. Traditional medicine uses preparations from basil ordinary for headaches, rheumatism, amenorrhea and vomiting. Dry chopped basil leaves are used as snuff for prolonged runny nose, mucous infusion of seeds is applied as a compress to sore eyes and cracks in the nipples of nursing women. Basil infusion is drunk like tea and used in the form of baths and poultices.
Infusions of basil ordinary:
- for appetite: 1-2 teaspoons of dry basil herb pour a quarter cup of water, bring to a boil, cook for 5-10 minutes, then insist for an hour, strain and drink in sips during the day,
- from toothache: pour one tablespoon of dry basil herb with a glass of boiling water, insist for 15-20 minutes, strain and rinse your mouth,
- for nausea: pour one tablespoon of basil herb with a glass of boiling water, leave for 20 minutes, strain and consume inside for nausea and vomiting.
- in case of neurosis and epilepsy: pour one tablespoon of dry herb of basil ordinary with a glass of boiling water, insist 2 hours, filter and drink 2 tablespoons four times a day.
- for washing the wounds: pour one tablespoon of basil seeds with a glass of boiling water and leave for 15 minutes.
Fresh leaves of mint leaf basil have astringent, wound healing, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and tonic effects. The grass collected during the flowering period enhances blood circulation, relaxes the muscles of the uterus, relieves toothache, and improves digestive function. Preparations from it are recommended for cystitis, whooping cough, bloating, oppression of the nervous system, kidney disease, weakened breathing, circulatory disorders.Basil herb helps with sore throat, runny nose, cough, fever, bronchial asthma, inflammation of the urinary tract. Peppermint Basil herb treats runny nose and sore throat. The antimicrobial effect of mint leaf basil is enhanced in combination with lavender, marjoram and coriander.
Infusion of basil leafwort: pour two teaspoons of dry chopped grass with a glass of boiling water, insist for an hour, then strain and take several sips during the day to raise the mood and stimulate appetite.
Tea balm from peppermint basil: take 2 tablespoons of black and green tea, two teaspoons of peppermint and peppermint basil, a teaspoon of thyme, mix well, pour 500 ml of boiling water, insist under the lid for 15 minutes, then strain and drink during the day in small sips as raising appetite and tonic for oppression of the nervous system.
Small-colored marigolds (Latin Tagetes patula), or sprawling or prostrate or rejected they are axamites, Andics, velvet color, black-shavers, black-browed, Moscow saffron - a grassy annual, whose flower baskets are used for medicinal purposes because of the valuable essential oil contained in them. Marigolds are grown not only in the garden, but also in the garden, sowing them between rows of vegetable crops to deter pests, many of which cannot tolerate the smell of these flowers.
As a medicine, an aqueous infusion of marigold flower baskets is used:
- as a diuretic: pour one tablespoon of flowers with a glass of boiling water, insist for half an hour, strain and take 2 tablespoons 3-4 times a day,
- as a diuretic and anti-inflammatory: pour 200 ml of boiling water over one tablespoon of dried flowers, insist for two hours, strain and take 2 tablespoons 3-4 times a day,
- to improve metabolism: pour eight liter flower baskets with one liter of boiling water, cook for 3 minutes over low heat, then drain the broth, pour the same flowers 800 ml of boiling water, boil for 5 minutes, strain, combine with the previously prepared broth, cool and place in the refrigerator. Take 200 ml in the mornings and evenings before meals for a month, then take a break for one week and repeat the course. You can use this decoction and externally as lotions for skin diseases.
Colchicum (Latin Colchicum)
Colchicum autumn (Latin Colchicum autumnale), or colchicum or Colchicum meadow, or meadow saffron or winter hut or saffron wild - This is a herbaceous perennial plant with a bulbous tuber and large lilac-pink flowers. Seeds, tubers are used as raw materials for medicines, and colchicum flowers are also used in France. All parts of the plant contain alkaloids, and the composition of tubers also includes organic acids. Tubers are harvested before flowering begins, and seeds - with the onset of their full maturity. The alkaloids included in the plant, colchicine and colchamine, have the same therapeutic properties, but use almost exclusively colchamine, since it is less toxic. This alkaloid is used to treat skin cancer and inoperable tumors of the esophagus, however, with an overdose of drugs containing colchamine, hematopoiesis function is inhibited, diarrhea appears, and hair begins to fall out. In folk medicine, tincture of colchicum seeds as a painkiller is used for deforming polyarthritis, and is externally used for gout and articular rheumatism.
Multi-colored carnation (Dianthus versicolor) and clove deltoid (Dianthus deltoides), or grass - herbaceous perennials, the aerial part of which is used for the manufacture of medicinal products. Applied for medicinal purposes and such types of plants as clove Chinese and clove lush. For Chinese cloves, both the root and the entire terrestrial part are used for medicinal purposes, for lush, colorful and deltoid cloves, only grass.
Chinese cloves have diuretic and anti-inflammatory properties, a decoction of it in China is used for skin eczema, amenorrhea, difficulty urinating, blood in the urine, and also for the treatment of all types of tumors.
Preparations from magnificent cloves have a calming, hemostatic, anticonvulsant and analgesic effect, as well as the ability to increase the tone of smooth muscles. An infusion of lush clove herb is indicated for headaches, cramps and uterine bleeding. In Chinese and Tibetan medicine, this popular plant is called “quaymai” and is used for female diseases. In Japan, a decoction of magnificent clove fruits is taken orally for diseases of the genitourinary system, and externally - for washing the inflamed oral mucosa and for washing with dermatitis.
Cloves of different colors exhibit antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, hemostatic, antitoxic, astringent and diuretic properties and are most often used to increase uterine tone and as an abortive. They also use preparations from multi-colored cloves for colds, diarrhea, epilepsy, suffocation, convulsions and from bites of rabid animals.
Clove deltoid, or grass, is used in folk medicine for hemorrhoidal and uterine bleeding, stomach ailments, heart pains, kidney and bladder diseases. Steamed grass in the form of a compress is applied to diseased joints.
Deltoid carnation infusions:
- for bleeding, gastritis, hemorrhoids and cystitis: pour a tablespoon of grass 200 ml of water, boil for 2-3 minutes over low heat, then insist for an hour, strain and take 1-2 tablespoons 3-4 times a day,
- for asphyxiation and cough: 3 tablespoons with a hill of herbs with flowers pour one liter of boiling water, leave for 1 hour, strain and slowly drink the infusion warm one glass a day.
Blood red geranium (lat.Geranium sanguineum), or blood crane or Vcha foot, or bobover or robber or hotel room or glass barn or marlitz is an unpretentious herbaceous perennial that grows in many gardens. For therapeutic purposes, grass and flowers are harvested in June-August, and geranium roots in September or October. Blood-red geranium and preparations made of it have anti-inflammatory, hemostatic, antiseptic and astringent effects. Geranium infusion is used for disorders of the digestive system, gout and stone and kidney disease, as well as for inflammatory processes of the oral mucosa, skin diseases and uterine, pulmonary and nosebleeds. A decoction of geranium grass is used in folk medicine for baths, washes and lotions for festering cuts, ulcers and skin diseases accompanied by severe itching. They make baths from a decoction of herbs for bone fractures, gargle with a sore throat and wash their hair with hair loss. Blood red geranium rhizomes also have anti-inflammatory and astringent properties. Preparations from them are used orally for pulmonary tuberculosis, bronchitis, diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, and externally for nosebleeds and skin diseases.
Blood Red Geranium Infusion: For 2 hours, infuse 2 teaspoons of crushed dry grass in 500 ml of cold boiled water, then strain and take it many times with sips in case of kidney stone disease.
Blood red geranium decoction from hair loss: 5 tablespoons of dry chopped geranium grass pour 500 ml of water and simmer for 5 minutes, then insist for an hour, strain and use to rinse the head after washing every other day for two weeks.
Swamp geranium (Geranium palustre), or quail or Tremental or blindness - also a herbaceous perennial, the ground part of which is collected during flowering and used as an astringent for pulmonary hemorrhages, dysentery, enterocolitis, gastritis and other digestive disorders accompanied by diarrhea. A swamp of geranium swamp gargle with sore throat and washed festering wounds.
Infusion of marsh geraniums: 2 teaspoons of dry grass pour two cups of cold boiled water, leave for 8 hours, strain and take a tablespoon every two hours.
Marsh geranium tincture: pour one part of the herb with ten parts of vodka, tightly cork, insist for two weeks in a dark place, then strain and take 20 drops for pain in the heart.
Meadow geranium (lat.Geranium pretense), or God's mercy or wolf grass or forest cornflowers or greasy grass or flower garden or swamp heather it is also a herbaceous perennial, all parts of which are used for medicinal purposes primarily because of the high content of tannins in them. Meadow geranium is in demand in folk medicine, as it has astringent, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. They use drugs from forest geranium for inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, dysentery, kidney stones, gout, and rheumatoid lesions of the joints. As a hemostatic agent, meadow geranium is used for external, uterine, pulmonary and nosebleeds. Water extracts of meadow geraniums inhibit the central nervous system, therefore they are used for increased irritability, convulsions and insomnia. Decoction and infusion of geraniums gargle with tonsillitis, make douching for female diseases and baths, washings and lotions for suppurating wounds, ulcers and eczema.
Infusion for internal use: Pour 1 tablespoon of chopped roots or herbs with two glasses of cold boiled water, insist under the lid for 8 hours, strain and drink in small sips throughout the day.
Meadow geranium infusion: Insist 2 teaspoons of dry grass under the lid in 2 cups of cold boiled water and strain.
Meadow geranium broth: 1 tablespoon of geranium herb pour a glass of boiling water, simmer for 5 minutes, cool, strain and bring to the original volume with boiled water. Take 1-2 tablespoon 3 times a day with meals. The same decoction, diluted 4-5 times, can be used externally - for rinsing, lotions, compresses and washing.
Forest geranium (lat.Geranium sylvaticum) - perennial herbaceous plant that blooms in June or early July. As a medicinal raw material, the ground part of the plant, harvested during flowering, and sometimes the roots of the plant, is used. Preparations from forest geranium have a disinfectant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, astringent, wound healing, antitoxic, hemostatic, analgesic, antipruritic and soothing properties. They are widely used for rheumatism, gout, kidney stone disease, malignancies, bone fractures, epilepsy, diseases of the upper respiratory tract, dysentery, urolithiasis, enteritis, gastritis, fever, food poisoning and heart disease. Outwardly they treat purulent wounds, tonsillitis, rheumatic pains, ulcers, abscesses, anal and genital fistulas.
Infusion of geranium forest: 2 teaspoons of chopped grass or roots pour two cups of cold boiled water, insist under the lid for 3 hours, strain and drink in sips during the day.
Hibiscus (lat.Hibiscus sabdariffa), or Sudanese rose or hibiscus - A close relative of the Chinese rose, decorating gardens as often as the Chinese rose of the home. For medicine, flowers of a plant called hibiscus are of interest.
The Sudanese rose has long been known for its healing qualities. Its flowers contain a large amount of acids - citric, malic, ascorbic, tartaric, as well as such biologically active substances as flavonoids, anthocyanins, polysaccharides and pectins. Hibiscus normalizes blood pressure, has a diuretic and antispasmodic effect, kills pathogens and can be used as an anthelmintic. The anti-inflammatory property of hibiscus is used in the treatment and prevention of upper respiratory and urinary tracts. The Chinese successfully use hibiscus as a means that prevents the formation of blood clots and normalizes blood circulation. It has hibiscus and an antispasmodic effect, which is especially manifested on the smooth muscles of the uterus. Drink from hibiscus helps to improve the general condition, increases appetite, physical endurance, helps to overcome chronic fatigue and withstand nervous overloads. It also brings relief to hibiscus tea with a hangover syndrome.
Delphinium is a perennial herbaceous plant that blooms in July-August with finite carpal inflorescences. For medicinal purposes, the grass of the plant is used, which is harvested during flowering.
In ancient times and the Middle Ages, dolphinium juice was used as a powerful remedy for parasites. Modern researchers have found that the delphinium contains alkaloids, similar in effect to the poison curare. In modern medicine, drugs from the delphinium are used when it is necessary to block the ends of the motor nerves in order to relax smooth muscles. Traditional medicine uses the dolphinium in the form of lotions for bone fractures - hence the Russian name for the dolphinium "liveliness."
Delphinium high (Latin Delphinium elata), or larkspur serves as a raw material for obtaining elantin - an alkaloid with a curare-like effect. It is used in tablets and powders for traumatic and vascular disorders of the brain, which are accompanied by muscle hypertension. Lotions and compresses from liveliness relieve pain in fractures and accelerate recovery. Burns are treated with broth from liveliness, the infusion is taken orally for diseases of the stomach, and for diseases of the throat it is used to rinse.
Royal Delphinium (lat.Delphinium consolida), or sowing liveliness, or the consolidation is magnificent, or cavalry spurs, or hatchets or butterflies - a grassy annual, whose land part is procured as medicinal raw material during the flowering period. Royal Dolphinium tincture is used in folk medicine for diseases of the liver, gastrointestinal tract and genitourinary system, whooping cough, pneumonia, to regulate the menstrual cycle and facilitate labor. Infusion of flowers of the delphinium is drunk with a headache, and externally used for conjunctivitis. Infusion of leaves and decoction of seeds due to its arousing and astringent properties are useful for convulsive cough and bronchial asthma.
Royal Infusion Delphinium: Pour 20 g of chopped delphinium grass with a liter of boiling water and insist under the lid for one hour, then strain and drink a glass before meals three times a day.
Royal infusion delphinium for external use: 10 g of flowers pour 500 ml of boiling water, leave for a quarter of an hour under a lid, strain and use for lotions with conjunctivitis.
Royal Delphinium Ointment: mix one part of the powder from the seeds of delphinium with ten parts of lard and use as an external remedy for scabies, rubbing into the skin three times a day for five minutes.
It is possible to use drugs prepared according to the recipes described in the article only after consulting a doctor!