Healing Herbs: A Guide to Medicinal Plants

Posted by WTHN on

It’s no secret that most people associate herbs with their many uses in the kitchen, especially when it comes to cooking. Most of us have tried to season a dish before, even if that just meant adding a bit of salt or thyme to our eggs, and have seen our mother’s kitchen cabinets full of aromatic spices from all around the world. 

But did you know that herbs aren’t just good for seasoning your next meal? They can actually improve your body’s overall wellbeing, both mentally and physically. 

While the idea of keeping your herbs in your medicine cabinet might seem far-fetched, it’s actually quite common for many people around the globe. Herbs have been used in medicinal practices for thousands of years because even ancient doctors saw how useful they were with a wide range of health benefits from digestive health to mental wellness. Simply put, herbs are natural products (aka plant parts) with therapeutic properties

So, let’s look at the finer points of herbal medicine and explore why it’s still so popular, even after all these years.

The Storied History of Plant Power

Ever since humans began to walk the earth, we have looked to Nature for the answers to what ails us. Plants have always surrounded us in plentiful amounts and varieties, and we have always been keen to explore their healing powers. 

A lot of common modern medicines from over the counter pain relievers to prescription drugs actually have origins in plant-based healing, such as the family of aspirin medicines. The process of refining plants has changed, in some cases quite radically, over the years, but it makes sense that our bodies naturally respond well to remedies from nature, like plants, and that is something that most likely will never change. 

It’s no wonder that doctors have been prescribing the strength of plant power to their patients to help with all types of ailments for so many years.

For example, the bark of willow trees has been used for years to relieve pain. Known as the natural version of aspirin because the chemical compounds used in both are so similar, many people prefer to use willow bark because it is said to be gentler on the stomach. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to actually chew on the bark, but willow bark is a common organic remedy and can be found in capsules, liquid tinctures, teas, and even as topical ointment for people with especially sensitive stomachs.

What Counts as an Herb? 

Did you know that any part of a plant can technically be counted as an herb? That means flowers, petals, roots, bark, leaves, stems, seeds, and all other parts.

All herbs have their own unique properties which can be used separately or in conjunction with other herbs or even other parts of the same plant to provide you with a supplement that can support some aspect of your body’s natural health. 

Herbal medicine is all about combining different herbs together to help provide wellness support where you need it most, shoring up your body’s defenses, and ensuring that you find your way to a healthier you.

How Can We Make Good Use of Them? 

Traditionally, herbs have been powdered and infused into tea with boiling water. But nowadays, that bitter flavor just isn’t everyone’s “cup of tea,” so many people prefer to ingest their herbs through herbal supplements or even external lotions, known as topical treatments. 

Just like with a prescription written by your doctor, when using the power of plants, it’s important to follow directions when it comes to how much to take and how often to take it. Unlike with Western medicine, herbal remedies have a more cumulative effect as they work to make positive waves in your body, and they may take a few days or even a few weeks to make tangible changes and provide noticeable results. So, it’s important not to rush things.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, herbs can be used in addition to other alternative therapies like acupuncture, cupping, and acupressure. That’s because, in TCM, your professional healer will help you find the right path along your healing journey and mix and match complementary types of therapies to find what’s most effective for you. Experienced practitioners can also recommend specific herbal formulas that will work best for your unique body and conditions.

What Are Herbs Good For? 

The short answer is:  everything! Just about every system in your body can be supported by using certain herbs or a combination of herbs. There are plenty of qualified guides that help to identify which herbs help where, so you can utilize them in your cooking or tea, or better yet, through a ready to consume supplement like the ones WTHN offers.

Some types of herbs improve your body’s immune system while others relieve pain and tension in the muscles which can help you get a better night’s sleep. Some herbs can even support cognitive effects, helping your memory and ability to focus. 

Speaking to how diverse herbs are in being able to support your wellness, WTHN offers herbal remedies that can boost your immunity, help with daily stress management, and help with bloating and overall digestion.   

People have found that blends of herbs work best when targeting specific conditions versus using just one single herb by itself. Herbs can work together to magnify one another’s therapeutic actions and help your body process the combination with minimal side effects.

When it comes to herbs, it’s crucial that you remember that natural ingredients can still cause allergic reactions, and they can also interact with synthetic ingredients and prescription medication. You should always consult with your doctor before adding any herbal supplements to your daily routine, and discontinue use immediately if you notice any symptoms of an allergic reaction like hives or puffiness. 

In Summary 

Clearly, herbs aren’t revolutionary or new, but thankfully, more people are realizing the plant power that resides in their kitchen cabinets. 

Here at WTHN, we source organic herbs from around the world and combine them based on extensive knowledge of TCM and modern medicine in an FDA-registered facility. We work hard to produce the highest quality herbal supplements, so we can ensure that you get the benefits your body needs and deserves to be your best you.

Healing herbs are everywhere, so find what works best for you, and experience plant-powered wellness in your life today!

 

Sources

https://www.healthline.com/health/willow-bark-natures-aspirin

https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?contenttypeid=1&contentid=1169

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3358962/