5 of Nature’s Most Powerful Medicinal Plants and Their Benefits

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Pharmaceutical medication is often required to treat health conditions, but a holistic approach that utilizes potent medicinal plants is both popular and effective.

Before physicians and prescriptions even existed, humans relied on herbs and plants with medicinal benefits for thousands of years

People grow and use these plants to treat a wide array of mental and physical ailments. Sometimes the leaves of the plants are best mixed with tea. Other times, herbs come in a powder form so you can reap the benefits of the full plant by mixing with water. Some people even claim to feel more relaxed after inhaling the fragrance of lavender essential oil, which is extracted from the lavender plant.

How you choose to use an herbal aid is up to you, and it may require a little trial and error. Most plants that possess health benefits come in capsules, tinctures, essential oils and so on. Usually, the best way to keep symptoms at bay is to stick with leaves and plant matter, leaning in on a form that isn’t diluted with fillers.

It’s important to remember that you need to use the right form of holistic medicine. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all plant for all that ails you. For gastrointestinal issues, go with mint. For generalized anxiety, try lavender.

Plantie is here and happy to guide you through five of nature’s most powerful plant medicines, so you can find the ones that will best treat your specific symptoms.

Always consult with your doctor before adding plant medicine into your medication and supplement regimen.

Lavender

Lavender has been around for upwards of 3,000 years and is native to northern Africa and the mountainous provinces of the Mediterranean. People extract the oils from the plant to formulate essential oils and skincare products. For better treatment, stick to using the herb by itself without any additives. We suggest brewing the leaves into tea, sprinkling them onto a salad or baking lavender cookies.

Research suggests that consumption can minimize anxiety, depression and insomnia, in addition to accelerated wound healing as a result of its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties.

Lavender is easy to grow in your backyard from a small plant or pack of seeds. This Organic Lavender Windowsill Planter ($24.99) comes with everything you need to grow lavender on your own: lavender seeds, a custom organic soil blend, fertilizer spikes and a large glass mason jar. Not only can you benefit from the plant after germination and growth, you’ll also enjoy the low-maintenance care and calming fragrance in your kitchen.

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Maca

The medicinal effects of maca come from the adaptogenic root rather than the leaves, flowers or stalk. This isn’t an easy plant to grow at home or in any climate other than Peru, so finding a powder or capsule that contains only maca is essential.

Research is ongoing, but we know daily consumption of this vegetable root may boost energy and sex drive, regulate emotions, ease hot flashes or other menopausal symptoms, and minimize anxiety.

Maca 5:1 Concentrated Extract is our preferred choice, thanks to the quality and one ingredient: organic maca root extract. The rawer, the better. This powder is designed to be mixed with coffee, tea, tonics, milk and even cake batter. Moon Juice formulated this vegan, nutrient-dense superfood to help people find balance in life, both physically and mentally.

Mint

Mint, a nutrient-rich creeper herb, has been used for medicinal purposes since the year 1440. Mint is an umbrella term, and different types fall under the plant genus Mentha. There are more than a dozen choices, from peppermint to lemon mint and spearmint, but all of them possess health benefits.

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Much like lavender, mint is ideal as a tea or when used in meals. Mint is primarily known for its remarkable ability to ease irritable bowel syndrome and indigestion. Most people don’t know mint may be able to improve brain function, help stomach aches, soothe breastfeeding pain and reduce cold symptoms. Most cold medicine contains menthol which is extracted from the mint plant itself.

You can opt to grow your own mint at home with Kitchen Mason Jar Herb Garden. This set includes all the necessities to grow mint and basil, another herb which may improve mental health, ease inflammation, regulate blood sugar and much more. Hesitant to start from a seed? Back to the Roots will replace your kit for free if your herbs don’t grow properly.

Cannabidiol (CBD)

In 2018, the U.S. Farm Bill legalized the sale and use of cannabidiol. Better known as CBD, this compound boasts many mental and physical health benefits, including pain-relieving, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and antibacterial properties.

Benefits include relaxation, less anxiety and depression, minimized pain with chronic and acute pain conditions, and regulation with mood fluctuations. Early stage research also suggests that CBD can ward off viruses, keep acne at bay and soothe inflammatory skin conditions.

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Not everyone enjoys smoking but a joint, but ground CBD flower is more potent than tinctures and edibles. The bioavailability rate is higher when you inhale the buds in their rawest form. A few puffs can reduce pain and anxiety within seconds.

Zenbarn Farms sells a variety of products, including three strains of flower—Hawaiian Haze, Lifter and Sour Space Candy. There are many strains in existence and they’re all derived from the hemp plant. We are personally partial to this CBD brand’s Sour Space Candy. With dense buds and hues of purple, green and orange, this is seriously some out-of-this-world flower.

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha is an ancient adaptogenic herb considered to be the most important herb in Indian Ayurvedic principles. Like maca, ashwagandha isn’t a low-maintenance plant, so finding a supplement that contains no fillers or additives will provide the most relief.

Whether it’s powder, tinctures or capsules, ashwagandha can lower cortisol levels which spike when experiencing stress or anxiety. it’s a great option for anyone who needs some calm in their life. Consumption may also lower blood sugar, improve sleep, boost male testosterone and fertility, and ease the symptoms of depression.

Moon Juice Ashwagandha 15:1 Full-Spectrum Root Extract is a variation of an older blend that contained organic ashwagandha root extract and root power. To intensify the potency, the brand removed the root powder, leaving this plant medicine with only one ingredient, a better taste and more servings. Much like maca, this powder pairs well with coffee, tea, baking batter and tonics.

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