Social Question

partyparty's avatar

Do you know of any useful herbal remedies?

Asked by partyparty (9139points) February 12th, 2010

Have you ever used a herbal remedy?
What did you use it for?
Was it a purchased item or did you make the remedy yourself?
What was the outcome for you, and would you recommend it?

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25 Answers

dpworkin's avatar

Willow bark isn’t bad for a headache, but it’s a lot easier to take an aspirin.

slick44's avatar

Garlic, fresh smashed garic for a toothache. make a paste and put it on your tooth. Kindy strong, but it works.Garlics good for everythin.lol

marinelife's avatar

I find a number of herbal remedies efficacious.

I take Calms Forte, which is a combination of herbs including passion flower, for anxiety. It is less effective than an SSRI, but has much less side effects.

I find echinnacea effective for drying up mucus secretions during a cold, and it seems to limit the severity of my colds.

ubersiren's avatar

I’m currently drinking raspberry leaf tea for women’s reproductive health. I’ve used chamomile to relax for years (tea, essential oils). Eucalyptus and tea tree oils are good to burn in your house as an antiseptic, say if someone has the flu and you don’t want to catch it. I’m a terrible one for chest congestion, so I inhale a steam of thyme and lavender to loosen it. It really works for me.

Sometimes I use dried herbs, and sometimes essential oils. I don’t make any of my own, though. One day, I’d like to have someplace to have my own herb garden.

slick44's avatar

Green tea, cures everything!

Cruiser's avatar

Valerian root is an amazing relaxant and can calm even the most of upset or nervous stomach! Nasty taste though but I would not be without it as it has helped get me through some trying times.

ubersiren's avatar

@Cruiser Yes! Valerian root… I have a linen spray with chamomile and valerian root that I absolutely love.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I like a cup of chamomile tea at night to relax with.I buy it at the store but have tried to grow it in my garden and killed it somehow.Probably while sleepwalking ;)

food's avatar

Ginger tea is good for a cold. (I´ve done it from scratch and also out of a bag and I think they both work similarly)
Honey and lemon juice are good for your throat. (from scratch, and I get to put as much lemon juice or honey as I want).
But the most effective, fool-proof remedy I have found is aloe for a burn! If I put it on a kitchen burn, the burn will disappear and there will be no trace of it (no scar). The way I apply it is that I cut off the tip of the leaf and open it up and place it directly on the burn and rub so it´s covered with the aloe goo. Then I leave it to dry for a few minutes, as long as I can. I apply a second or third coat if I want to, and let those dry as well. Finally and eventually, I´ll wash it all off. The worse the burn is, the more coats you´ll spontaneously want to apply. In other words, if the burn hurts again you´ll want to put on another coat of aloe. Finally, when the pain isn´t as strong, then you´ll be ready to wash it off.
Calamine is also useful for mosquito bites. (I´ve used it from a bottle). It cools the skin.

dpworkin's avatar

Since insufficient research has been done on any of these “remedies”, anyone who says he “knows” how efficacious this or that herb is for this or that affliction is talking through his hat.

food's avatar

really? have you tried aloe on a burn?
haha

food's avatar

I think that if you find a specific use for a plant it´s probably better than if you think it´s a cure for everything. There´s more of a chance that it´s useful for one thing than for everything.

dpworkin's avatar

I never said herbal remedies don’t work. I said we don’t know if certain ones work, how well, optimum dosages, possible side effects, etc. St John’s Wort was widely viewed as a “natural” antidepressant until it was studied and found to be no more useful than placebo.

partyparty's avatar

@dpworkin love your answer about the aspirin LOL thanks

partyparty's avatar

@slick44 Wow I didn’t know garlic was good for toothache, thanks

partyparty's avatar

@ubersiren Many thanks for all the remedies you suggest.

I have actually bought a book on how to make your own remedies, but I haven’t been confident enough to try put them to the test. One day perhaps.

partyparty's avatar

@Cruiser Valerian root? So do you drink it or what?

partyparty's avatar

@food Thanks for the advice about Aloe. I am always getting burns in the kitchen, so I am sure to buy an Aloe plant.

partyparty's avatar

@dpworkin I think you will find that there has been lots and lots of research done on the ‘common’ aspirin.

partyparty's avatar

@marinelife So could you take a larger amount of Calmes Forte to reduce the anxiety, or would you be overdosing if you did?
@lucillelucillelucille I love the smell of chamomile. Why don’t you try to grow some more?

Cruiser's avatar

@partyparty The first time I tried it I took a liquid extract to calm my nerves and stomach…the effect was instantaneous but nasty awful to taste. But I was desperate then and put up with it as it worked like a charm. Since then I have found a powder capsule form that seems to work as good but obviously takes longer to take effect.

Cruiser's avatar

The interesting part of herbal remedies is obviously there are a lot of modern medicines based on natural ingredients such as aspirin, Star Anise (Tamiflu) and the chemicals found in cinnamon, cocoa, poppies, fish oil etc. and the main reason they are researched and tested is they involve special often complex processing that big pharma can manufacture and make money on. Stuff like chamomile, garlic, dandelion, ginger, onion, grapes and other natural foods and herbs that are therapeutic and down right good for you are things big pharma can’t make money on since they are plentiful and we can grow our own plus who is going to fund that kind of research on remedies that are cheap and in many cases free??? That would then eat into their profitable OTC empire if they or others “proved” their therapeutic value. Plus diet, exercise, yoga and meditation would just about kill the OTC pharmaceutical market if everybody did it and lucky for big pharma and the insurance industry people are naturally lazy. Pass the chips please.

partyparty's avatar

@Cruiser How very true your answer is, thanks

food's avatar

You’re welcome, partyparty, let me know when you do try it

food's avatar

I didn´t mention it, but aloe is actually known as “the burn plant”

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