Effective Chinese and Amazon Herbs and Their Uses
I am truly excited about the quantity and quality of holistic health research now being published. for various Chinese Medicine and Herbal Medicine from the Amazon are changing the way we treat ourselves by holistic methods. As a result of this increase in information, more people are taking responsibility for their own health by making better dietary choices and using supplementation as a way of staying young, healthy and vibrant throughout their lives.
This will have a positive effect on our society for generations to come.
It is my belief that as we take responsibility for our choices and actions, we help lift ourselves, our friends and our world into a new paradigm of understanding, spirituality and freedom.
This process begins by acknowledging we make a difference in the world and continues as we create an uplifting life for ourselves with the people around us.
I have found the herbs and combinations listed here to be of great value to myself and others. I invite you to explore them as an extension of your diet and to experience how these choices can help maintain the balance, health and vitality you deserve. The source of disease can be complicated, so no conclusion should be drawn that these herbs will cure any disease, although certain herbs do contain biologically active antitumor, antifungal, and antiviral compounds.
Act responsibly. If you are experiencing any physical symptoms that need attention consult a health care professional for recommendations and appropriate treatment.
The information below is for education purposes only, always consult a healthcare professional before taking any herbs or formulas.
A TRIBAL TEA
Uña de gato
Although the healing properties of many of South American plants have yet to be discovered by modern science, the rainforest medicine men have known from generations of experience what is healthy for their people. They can track down the best species of plants to provide the biological intervention needed to prevent sickness or expel disease. This practice has been going on successfully since before our recorded history.
Using their life long experience and wisdom, the Shipibo Medicine men chose the combination of herbs in this tea to bring health and balance to the people who drink this tea daily.
These herbs have been shown to naturally energize and invigorate the body, while spurring the immune system to increase the white blood cell count. This helps to give the body strength to fight a wide variety illnesses, including respiratory and urinary track problems. These herbs have also been shown to have strong antiviral properties. Studies show they actually help the body develop antibodies against the hepatitis B virus.
The herbs in this tea may be helpful to diabetics as they have been shown to help lower blood sugar levels in people with high blood sugar. Lowering the available sugar to normal levels may also help people eliminate candida and fungal infections which thrive off excess sugar.
Other exciting benefits are that these herbs are high in antioxidants which can reduce the effects of stress, increase circulation, improve mental clarity, and increase energy.
A FIBER FORMULA
Uña de Gato
Sandre de Drago
This combination incorporates herbs traditionally known for their cleansing abilities
And several forms of fiber. Working together, the fiber and herbs, stimulate the release and removal of toxins for a more complete cleansing.
It is universally accepted that adding fiber to the diet helps lower cholesterol, cleanse the intestinal track and regulate bowel movements. Fiber also strengthens the intestines and increases the absorption of nutrients.
This formula employs artichoke leaf and boldo to stimulate liver and gallbladder cleansing and this helps neutralize inflammation throughout the body. They promote digestion and, acting as diuretics, remove toxins.
Uña de Gato, known for its ability to clear parasites, bacteria and fungus, is included to help cleans the intestines and stimulate the immune system. It has a traditional history of being used for cases of candida, leaky gut syndrome, Crohn’s disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Friendly bacteria flourishes in the improved environment which aids in healing.
Quebra pedra helps cleanse the kidneys, gallbladder and urinary track. Jatoba helps neutralize yeast, candida and fungus infections. Slippery Elm bark helps soothe inflammation and moisten the intestines. Licorice helps to stabilize blood sugar levels, stimulate digestion and clear the pancreas. Artichoke helps the liver detoxify. Hibiscus flower helps to cool inflammation and soothe the nerves.
Camu camu has 3,000 times more vitamin C than oranges, and acts as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. This formula can be used once or twice daily to maintain a healthy digestive track and to help keep the pathways of elimination open.
A CLARITY FORMULA
Kava Kava Root
This formula is similar to the Calming combination with the addition of the herb Kava Kava, always use the Kava Root, not the leaves or branches.
Traditionally, tribal members used Kava to soothe tensions and improve relations at important meetings. Today, Kava is so popular, in some regions, Kava bars far outnumber bars serving alcohol. People gather to drink Kava and enjoy friendlier, more open conversation as Kava clears anxiety, aggression and hostility away. Kava Kava’s most dramatic properties come from their Kavalactones. Kavalactones have been shown to relieve anxiety while increasing mental clarity and focus. They improve memory and reaction time of the brain. Kava also relaxes muscles and reduces inflammation.
Some studies indicate that Kavalactones act on the “animal survival” or limbic system in the brain. The limbic system influences the rest of the brain and our emotions. This influence may be one of the reasons Kava helps calm aggression and anger while increasing clarity.
This Stress Relieving Formula can be used by anyone who desires help with anxiety while maintaining clarity, focus and improved sleep patterns.
AN ALGAE FORMULA
Aphanizomenon Flox-Aqua Fucas (Blue Green Algae)
This formula includes two well documented healing foods: a Blue Green Algae from Klamath Lake called Aphanizomenon Flos-Aquae, and Fucas, which comes from the clean ocean waters off the coast of Brazil and Peru. Studies of Aphanizomenon Flos-Aquae or AFA, show it improves diabetes, hypoglycemia, memory, attention deficit, chronic fatigue, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, the immune system, skin, allergies, asthma, and depression.
Part of the powerful effect of AFA comes from the fact that AFA has all the 21 amino acids we need. Many people are not aware of the importance of amino acids for keeping virtually every body system functioning properly. Without all the amino acids the body can not make all the compounds it needs and starts to congest. Many physicians consider congestion to be the first step towards disease and a major reason people feel sluggish, tired, mentally foggy and run down. A full set of amino acids helps the body run smooth.
Another healing factor from AFA is the concentrated essential fatty acids. These EFAs benefit the immune, cardio-vascular and nervous systems. Many people feel mentally brighter after supplementing with these super foods. These reports are supported by a study which shows the ability of the brain to assimilate information is greater after the use of this blue green food. These aquatic gems increase natural killer cells which destroy invading pathogens and prevent cancer. They also have an abundance of trace minerals in a form easily absorbed by the body. Fucas is particularly high in iodine which helps to stimulate the thyroid and promote normal metabolism.
Many people use this formula to lose weight while feeling alert with more energy and mental focus. Always start with small dosages of Blue Green Algae in the beginning, some people who start off with high doses experience flu like symptoms.
A WHOLE BODY TONIC
Uña de gato
Pedra hume caa
Pata de vaca
Sangre de Grado
This combination supports the whole body and is particularly good for the nervous system. It contains significant amounts of all the most important rainforest herbs making it one of the most biologically active combinations available.
Each of the body’s systems work together to keep us healthy, emotionally stable and energetic. If any of the body’s systems is suppressed, congested or stressed, it can dramatically affect the rest of the body.
For these systems to work together several things need to happen. First, we need to have a well-balanced supply of all the essential trace minerals and vitamins. (Unfortunately, these are usually lacking in today’s over-processed, under-vitalized foods). We must have strong digestive powers to separate nutrients from food, and good circulation to bring these nutrients to the individual cells. We must also have clear and reactive
nervous systems so the endocrine, organ and other body systems can receive the micro-electrical signals sent from the brain.
Creating this balance is not easy. Manufacturers and marketers are oriented toward profitand convenience. It may seem that most everything that is easily available is challenging to our physical and emotional well-being, (i.e.: bad food, violent movies, stressful jobs,stressful relationships, financial difficulties, etc.)Fortunately, these herbs in combination are a powerful tonic that has been shown to clear the nervous system and other energetic pathways (called meridians) throughout the body. This keeps the vital electrical impulses from the brain flowing easily. This in turn supports the entire endocrine and organ systems.
A major factor contributing to the potency of this whole body tonic is the rich composted soil of the Amazon rainforest where these herbs are harvested. In many areas the cycle of growth and decay has gone undisturbed for hundreds of years, making the soil rich and vital with abundant avail-able nutrients. This level of nutrients lets the plants flourish and the potency of the herbs is much stronger than if grown elsewhere.
This combination also acts as an excellent antioxidant complex and markedly improves immune function, sup-ports hormonal production, balances blood sugar levels, and detoxifies the blood, lymph, liver, and gallbladder. It also helps calm anxiety, increases circulation, opens the elimination systems, increases intestinal flora and is a powerful nerve tonic.
This whole body tonic is an invaluable tool in maintaining vigor and balance in today’s world.
AN IMMUNE SYSTEM SUPPORT COMBINATION
Uña de gato
This combination acts as an overall tonic and stimulates the immune system in several ways to attack foreign bacteria, yeasts, fungus and viruses. It is highly nutritious and particularly rich in iron which can help with anemia. It can help build red blood cells and support both diabetics and hypoglycemics. Other benefits include: removing organic toxins, relieving allergies, clearing lungs, reducing mucus, calming the nervous system, promoting circu-lation, increasing energy, clearing and focusing the mind and neutralizing acid. This combination also has impressive anti-inflamma-tory properties.
Many health challenges people face today involve an overgrowth of unfriendly bacteria or yeasts resulting in an infection. This often has more to do with the internal cleanliness of our bodies rather than contact with an infectious disease. Bacteria and yeast are living organisms we are exposed to constantly. In order for these invaders to take hold in the body, there must be enough food available for a colony to thrive and the immune system must be weaker than the invading force. The food source for these invading organisms is often the result of poor diet, incomplete digestion, bad circulation or a sluggish lymphatic system. These situations promote an accumulation of organic toxins and mucus. These toxins include free radicals and misplaced metabolic waste. Mucus is an excretion that helps keep irritants away from sensitive tissue. All this can provide great breeding grounds for the invaders.
All metabolic activity creates waste which the body normally easily expels.
Unfortunately, in our culture people typically eat devitalized food (which slows digestion), do not exercise enough to keep the lymph system clear, and suppress their emotions (which constricts blood circulation and nerve flow throughout the body). This creates areas of stagnant circulation allowing metabolic waste to accumulate, providing an excellent food source for bacteria and yeast. This opens the door to infections such as candida, pneumonia, earaches, etc.
This combination of herbs is particularly good at clearing out mucus and other breeding grounds, thus reducing the opportunity for infectious overgrowth. It also stimulates the immune system to attack foreign bacteria, yeasts, fungus and viruses. Most chronic complaints, including allergies, asthma, candida, low energy, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and many cancers involve an infectious overgrowth coupled with a compromised immune system. Because this herbal combination addresses both these situations it has powerful, wide-reaching effects on a person’s overall health.
A DIGESTION ENHANCING COMBINATION
These herbs in combination have traditionally been used to support the entire digestive tract. They help the body to break down food, absorb nutrients, and move the by-products to their final destination out of the body.
The herbs begin by helping the stomach to regulate the release of digestive juices. This is important for several reasons. First, strong stomach acids are an important defense against harmful bacteria by creating an inhospitable environment. They also break down food for proper nutrient absorption in the intestines.
Heartburn, which most people attribute to excess acid, is often caused by consistently weak digestive acids. This allows the bacteria Helicobactor pylori, (a common bacteria that bores into the stomach lining), to proliferate in the stomach and irritate the lining.
Because of stomach irritation caused by the Helicobactor bacteria, even weak stomach acids can cause pain. Many people may take antacids to deal with his pain.
Taking antacids can create a cycle of heartburn because they neutralize the stomach acids needed to kill the bacteria. This allows for continued irritation by Helicobactor.
Antacids also allow under-digested food to pass into the intestines. This can cause poor absorption of nutrients since the food is still too large to assimilate properly. This can also cause flatulence because intestinal bacteria will tend to ferment undigested food which causes gas. These herbs help to balance stomach acids, neutralize bacteria and stimulate digestion.
Recently researchers have found that virtually all stomach ulcers harbor the
Helicobactor pylori bacteria. Instead of recommending antacids, which temporarily relieve pain, many doctors are now treating ulcers with antibiotics to kill the Helicobactor bacteria. These herbs have also been used to keep the intestines clean and this improves the absorption of nutrients. As a result of congested colons, many people are not able to absorb the nutrients available in their food. This can make them continue to feel hungry even when they have just eaten. As nutrients are more readily absorbed, people can eat less food and feel more satisfied. This helps people lose weight naturally.
This combination of herbs also helps with constipation by stimulating strong peristaltic action (which moves feces through the intestines). It can be used to dissolve mucus throughout the body, especially when taken between meals or at night. It helps stimulate bile production (for fat digestion), flush the gallbladder, and tonify the stomach, intestines, and ileocecal valve. It can help clear parasites, balance the body’s ph, fortify the blood, and relieve gas, nausea and insomnia. This is an excellent combination to use
for almost any digestive disturbance. and have a “slump” in energy.
Fortunately, the liver stores glycogen for these situations and releases it to balance the blood sugar level. Unfortunately, this cycle of sugar spikes and glycogen release is very stressful to the pancreas, liver and the immune system. This produces free radicals which subsequently jeopardize the ability of the liver, pancreas and other organs to perform
many of their life-giving functions. Over time, this cycle can also severely inhibit the body’s ability to maintain stable blood sugar levels and can lead to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar from depleted glycogen and consistent excess insulin) and diabetes (high blood sugar because the pancreas can no longer make enough insulin to metabolize normal intake of sugar). Although fructose and other sugars burn more slowly than sucrose and create less of a blood sugar spike, they also have an overall damaging affect
when eaten to excess. So it is important to be aware of both the quality as well as the quantity of sugars we eat.
Sugars are used extensively in almost all processed foods because they taste good, are inexpensive fillers, and act as a preservatives. The most common forms of sugar may be labeled as sugar, sucrose, fructose, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, dextrose, maltodextrin or rice syrup. People simply were not designed to live on this highly processed sugar diet. Many degenerative illnesses can be avoided by limiting the sugars in our diet and through proper nutrition and supplementation.
This sugar metabolizing combination supports the sugar digestion and sugar stabilization systems, relieving much of the stress of a high sugar diet. This in turn promotes a steady,long term energy supply. For these reasons, and because of the hidden sugars in our prepackaged foods, these herbs can be used by almost everyone in our society.
A SUGAR METABOLIZING COMBINATION
Pedra Hume Caa
Pata de vaca
This combination has historically been used to support the systems which regulate blood sugar levels. It can be used after eating too much sugar or to give a boost of energy for a “mid-afternoon slump.” This combination helps relieve tension and the desire for sweets.
It helps stimulate a more complete digestion of complex carbohydrates. This is importantsince complex carbohydrates break down into slow burning sugars which help maintain a stable energy supply. These benefits make this formula invaluable for helping with weight problems and candida infections, (Candida is a yeast that thrives on undigested sugars, causes allergies, and makes people feel tired and moody).
There are several factors involved in maintaining stable blood sugar levels. The most important is the amount of sugar eaten. Next is the liver’s ability to store and then release sugars when needed. Another important factor is the ability of the pancreas to manufacture insulin which brings down blood sugar levels. The various kinds of sugars we eat affect these processes in different ways since all sugars burn (oxidize) at different rates.
For example, sucrose (from sugar cane) and fructose (from fruit) are the most common sugars used in commercial food production. Sucrose burns quickly, like a newspaper on a fire.
It gives an almost immediate rush of energy. Fructose burns considerably slower, more like a log. It provides a more stable,longer-lasting energy supply.
Because of the speed at which sucrose gets into the blood it causes a quick rise in blood sugar levels. This triggers an exaggerated release of insulin from the pancreas to bring the sugar levels back down. If excess insulin remains as the blood sugar levels reach normal, the remaining insulin will continue to metabolize blood sugar. This will cause the sugar level to plummet below normal, and can make a person feel tired and irritable.
AN ENDOCRINE BALANCING COMBINATION
This combination of herbs is a great energizer and helps regulate the endocrine, immune, muscular/skeletal and digestive systems. They increase stamina, endurance and mental clarity, act as an aphrodisiac, regulate blood sugar and balance the hormones. They also help with chronic fatigue and increase oxygen utilization in the body.
The seven glands of the endocrine system, (the pineal, pituitary, thyroid, thymus,pancreas, adrenals and gonads), are the most active system regulators in the body. All of the body systems receive instructions from these tiny glands. As the requirements of the body change (i.e. going out in cold weather, eating food, taking a walk or going to sleep), the endocrine system sends messages via the nervous system and hormonal production to reestablish a new internal equilibrium. This maintains a healthy internal environment for the entire body under many external environmental changes.
These herbs are particularly supportive to the thyroid which regulates body temperature and metabolism. Many times when people have a low body temperature, memory problems, or difficulty losing weight, the thyroid is underactive. These herbs can help balance the thyroid, bring a low body temperature back to normal, enhance mental clarity, and increase a slow metabolism, (thus making it easier to lose weight).
The herbs in this combination also have substantial levels of steroidal compounds and plant based hormones which increase energy levels and help the endocrine glands regulate the body. This combination also has adaptogenic qualities and works by normalizing body systems rather than stimulating or inhibiting them.
AN ENVIRONMENTAL DETOXIFYING COMBINATION
Uña de gato
These herbs in combination have been used to stimulate the body to release inorganic environmental toxins such as chemicals, pesticides and other common pollutants. They can help to cleanse the liver and gallbladder as well as to support the function of the spleen and kidneys. This can help give a person more energy, lower cholesterol, better fat digestion, stable blood sugar levels, and more complete enzyme and hormone production. This combination also helps heal urinary tract infections. In addition, it can also prevent, and aid in the recovery from, hangovers. This combination also helps to stimulate the immune system, clear allergies and acts as a diuretic.
The liver is one of the body’s main detoxifying organs. It works by removing toxins from the blood which flows though it. If the liver pulls toxins from the blood while its elimination pathways are congested, it will store these toxins (encased in cholesterol and fat) within itself. This is a common problem. As the toxins within the liver build, it becomes less able to clean the blood and perform its many other life-giving functions.
The body’s ability to digest fat and oil is impaired and enzyme and hormone production falls. This can lead to weight gain.
If the liver continues to store toxins without clear elimination pathways, it may become inflamed, further congested and less resistant to disease. Because it is one the body’s most effective detoxifiers, as the liver reaches its storage capacity, the rest of body becomes loaded with toxins. This is a typical cause of many degenerative disorders, including allergies, arthritis, asthma, constipation, hepatitis, gout, chronic fatigue, acne and both genital and oral herpes outbreaks.
The liver also manufactures bile which it sends to the gallbladder for storage. When you eat food with fat or oil, the gallbladder secretes the bile into the duodenum, a six-inch section of the digestive track between the stomach and the small intestines. There the bile emulsifies the fats and oils so enzymes can reduce them to prostaglandins.
Prostaglandins perform many important duties including transporting hormones to receptor sites and acting as anti-inflammatory agents.
If the liver and gallbladder are too congested with toxins (which can lead to gallstones) then less bile is expelled from the gallbladder and fat digestion is impaired. Under-digested fats can coat the intestines. This can make it difficult to absorb nutrients. As the blood vessels try to pull nutrients from the intestinal walls, fat is absorbed instead. As these undigested fat globules travel through the bloodstream, the red and white blood cells get a sticky coating of oil which makes it difficult for the red cells to transfer oxygen and for the white cells to attack and kill invaders. These fat globules also tend to stick to free roaming calcium, causing arterial plaque, arterial sclerosis and possible arterial blockages which can lead to strokes.
Unfortunately, many people believe that because of these potential problems they should cut out as many fats from their diet as possible. This has spurred on a no-fat, low-fat diet craze. Although the majority of Americans do eat too much fat, there are fats which break down to prostaglandins that we need in our diet.
Certain fats break down into prostaglandins that are anti-inflammatory in nature while others break down into inflammatory prostaglandins. The anti-inflamma-tory, or “good” prostaglandins, come primarily from the oils in fish and from plants such as avocados, olives, flaxseed, borage seed, and evening primrose oil. Inflammatory prostaglandins come primarily from fats found in meats such as beef, pork, lamb, veal, and chicken.
Many inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, asthma, bronchitis and gout may subside by simply changing the intake of fats from inflammatory to anti-inflammatory sources.
A little known fact is the liver actually manufactures cholesterol. Optimally, only about thirty percent of our total cholesterol should be derived from the diet. Among other things, our bodies use cholesterol to encase toxins and buffer irritations as well as produce important hormones. If the liver is stressed, it will tend to manufacture more cholesterol to combat potential problems.
The higher the stress in a life the higher the cholesterol produced. If the body doesn’t get enough anti-inflammatory prostaglandins the liver, and other organs become inflamed, even more cholesterol is produced. This process leads to obesity and high blood pressure. Unfortunately, most people are taught to cut as many fats as possible from their diet which can only make the problem worse. The real solution is to eat “good” fats conservatively and to fully digest the fats that are eaten.
The liver is one of the master organs of the body and has many important functions, all of which are affected by inflammation and toxicity. Treat your liver well. In our modern world where toxins are sprayed on our food and polluting our water, this combination of herbs is an invaluable tool for keeping our bodies clean and healthy.
A CALMING COMBINATION
The negative effects of stress on our bodies has been widely documented. These herbs in combination have been traditionally used for calming and balancing from any stressful situation in life.
Stress, either emotional or physical, can cause constrictions of blood, nerve and energy supplies to organs and glands. This can lead to tight, painful muscles, typically in the neck or back, as well as headaches and stomach and heart problems.
This is an excellent herbal mix for people with stressful situations in their lives because it helps the body to neutralize the biochemical by-products of that stress. This combination of herbs also has a mild natural sedative effect and has been used to calm hyperactive and tense children. It helps to relieve headaches, nausea, and hemorrhoids.
It strengthens the heart which is often affected by stress and fortifies the blood. This combina-tion also has antidepressant properties and can be used for insomnia and to quiet hysteria. It soothes stomach pains and ulcers. It can help regulate and cool the liver and neutralize excess acid throughout the body.
Supporting the body with this combination can help to promote mental clarity and emotional stability, particularly during stressful times. This combination can be used anytime to reduce stress or excess nervous energy while maintaining balance and clarity.
A WOMAN’S CYCLE COMBINATION
This combination of herbs is particularly helpful for the
requirements of women’s menstrual or “lunar” cycle. It can
naturally relieve PMS symptoms such as mood swings, low
energy, irritability, cramps, bloating and breast tenderness. This
combination can increase sex drive and fertility, and relieve
vaginal dryness. Also, it can help relieve cystitis and infections
of the bladder and urinary tract. It may be used to soothe both
labor and post-childbirth pains. This combina-tion is high in
iron and may help with anemia.
Because of the high percentage of natural hormone precursors,
this combination is excellent for menopausal women who are
concerned about maintaining a proper estrogen/progesterone
balance. Recent studies have shown that estrogen helps stop
bone loss and progesterone helps increase bone density.
Estrogen and progesterone are also key factors in calcium ionization. For calcium to be utilized by the body and to strengthen the bones, it must either be ionized or come from plant sources like these herbs.
Women can use this combination throughout the month and increase the dosage before menses for PMS symptoms.
A MUSCLE TONING COMBINATION
These combination of herbs have traditionally been used as an
excellent muscle toner and energizer. The core ingredients of
this combination come from the Shao-Lin monks in China.
They use these herbs for added strength, energy, mental clarity
and focus, primarily for their martial arts training. Amazon
rainforest herbs have been added for additional circulation,
organ and nervous system support.
This combination of herbs contains a high percent-age of
natural steroid-like compounds which makes it a favorite with
those choosing to increase muscle mass, strength and
endurance. It can be used to help previous users of anabolic
steroids to retain muscle mass safely and naturally while
increasing circulation and emotional stability. It can also be
used to ease menopause symptoms in women and to enhance
libido in both men and woman.
This combination of herbs releases so much energy that many people use it as a coffee substitute in the morning. It is also used to maintain a stable high energy level throughout the day. These herbs help increase immune system response and can help balance the liver, spleen and kidneys.
A RECOVERY COMBINATION
Red tangerine peel
This combination of herbs is excellent for healing and recovering from injuries, illnesses or stress. The core of this formula comes from the Shao-Lin monks in China who use them to recover from bumps, bruises, strains and other injuries received during their martial arts training. Some herbs from the Amazon rainforest were added to increase healing from stress and strain, painful, swollen joints and osteoarthritis.
All athletes can use these herbs to shorten recovery time after strenuous exercise or competition. These herbs help knit muscle strains by dissipating blood and congestion at the injury site. They also reduce lactic acid produced during hard exercise. The added circulation helps to relieve soreness, cramps and trauma while reducing swelling and the risk of future injury to muscles and joints.
This combination can also be used to balance the endocrine system and to calm the nerves after a hard day at work or any stressful situation. It is excellent for shortening recovery time from illness, injury or surgery. These herbs support liver function and help the body to better utilize oxygen.
These herbs stimulate protein absorption and utilization, strengthen muscle tone, promote healing and increase circulation. They also help detoxify, invigorate and balance the body and lift the emotions. They can also be used as an anti-inflammatory for both soft tissue and joints. This is a key herbal combination for healing and recovering in the 21st century.
TRADITIONAL USES FOR SELECTED
AMAZONIAN AND CHINESE HERBS
ABUTA – Cissampelos pareira
South American Indian women have used abuta for centuries to relieve symptoms associated with menstruation and to balance female hormones. It is commonly referred to as the “midwives’ herb” and has been believed to help prevent miscarriage and stop uterine hemorrhaging.
ALFALFA – Medicago Sativa
Because of a long root system which absorbs abundant minerals, alfalfa is very high in minerals and vitamins, particularly iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, trace minerals and vitamin K. It helps to remove toxins and neutralizes acids. It is good for anemia, menopause, arthritis, gout, stabilizing blood sugar levels, balancing the pituitary gland, and detoxifying the blood and kidneys. Alfalfa helps soothe ulcers, the liver and acts as aheart tonic. It helps with estrogen production and morning sickness. It has in it a natural fluoride and is a mild diuretic. Alfalfa may be used for reducing fevers and rheumatism and has a mild laxative effect. It is good for cystitis or an inflamed bladder and relief from bloating and water retention.
ANIS – Pimpinella Anisum
Anis was originally used in Ancient Egypt. It is helpful in removing excess mucous from the lungs and digestive track. It has been used for colic in children, as an antispasmodic,and an antifungal. It can help prevent fermentation and gas in the stomach and bowels,thus relieving bloating and belching after meals. Anis is a mild diuretic and can stimulate added production of milk in nursing mothers. It has been mostly used for digestion issues including indigestion, nausea and gallbladder cleansing. It can also help asthma, bronchitis, and insomnia. Folklore says that if you place anis in your pillow it will ward off bad dreams.
Aquilaria has been used to enhance cerebral function, balance the mind/body connection and the nervous system.
ARTICHOKE LEAF – Cynara Scolymus
Artichoke leaf has a reputation as a choleretic (stimulates bile), diuretic and general stimulant. It helps to neutralize excessive acid in the body. It has been used for jaundiceand dropsy.
ASTRAGALUS – Astragalus membranaceus
Astragalus was originally used in China for a variety of reasons including immune system support, diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure. Dr. Mauligit of Texas University found it helped to restore immune function in cancer patients. Astragalus helps to invigorate vital energy, drain pus, reduce swelling and strengthen the spleen.
It is helpful for lingering diarrhea. It has been shown to augment interferon response to viruses. It is a good herb for chronic low energy, weak lungs, shortness of breath, and kidney and bladder infections that do not respond to diuretics. Astragalus helps strengthen digestion, improve metabolism and lift prolapsed organs. It can also enhance fertility and libido.
ATRACTYLODES – Atractylodes Alba
Atractylodes has been shown to act on the stomach and spleen. It can be used to stimulate appetite, and stop vomiting and diarrhea. It is a diuretic and has been used for edema, fatigue, spontaneous sweating, fever and chills. It has been used in pregnancy for morning sickness and restless fetus.
BITTER ORANGE – Citrus Aurantium
Bitter orange has been used as a digestive tonic to help relieve nausea and soothe stomach disturbances such as indigestion, gas and bloating. Research has shown that it is effective in shrinking a distended stomach and lifting a prolapsed womb or rectum. It is
an expectorant and laxative. It is considered to be one of the strongest chi moving herbs,with the power to help break up tumors.
BOLDO – Peumus Boldus
Boldo is a widely used herb in South America. It has been used
to treat liver, gallbladder and bowel dysfunctions. It helps
promote fat digestion by stimulating the secretion of bile. It
helps neutralize acid and is good for digestion. It has been used
in Latin America for urogenital inflammations such as
gonorrhea. Elsewhere it has been used for gout, hepatitis,
rheumatism, syphilis and worms. It has been shown to be an
antiseptic and diuretic which is good for urinary infections and
uric acid elimination.
CARQUEJA – Baccharis Genist
Carqueja can be used to strengthen stomach and intestinal function. It helps purge obstructions of the liver and gallbladder. It helps strengthen digestion and the illeocecal valve and fortifies the blood. It can also support and tonify the nervous system and increases stomach yin.
CASHEW PLANT – Anacardium Occidentale
Cashew plant has been used in combinations which help diabetes and support the pancreas. It can also help the body to assimilate and retain electrolytes and minerals.
CATUABA – Juniperis Brasilienis
Catuaba is excellent for the male reproductive organs. It can
increase circulation and libido. It is famous as a stimulant to the
nervous system and brain. It can be used in cases of impotence.
CHAMOMILE – Matricaria Chamomilla
Chamomile is a slightly bitter herb that helps soothe nerves,
increase mental awareness, settle the stomach and promote
digestion. It is used as a tea to calm hyperactive children,
menstrual cramps, and asthma. It is a diuretic and has been
used for bladder problems. It helps with fevers, colds,
headaches, insomnia, rheumatism, relieving gas and expelling
worms. Chamomile is good for the liver and lungs and helps
reduce jaundice, swelling, and easewithdrawal from drugs. It
acts as a mild laxative and can bring on menses. It is good for
crying, whining babies and helps soothe the pain of teething. Chamomile can be used as a mouthwash for gingivitis and externally for inflammation.
COSTUS ROOT – Radix Aucklandiae Lappae
Costus root acts on the spleen and large intestine. It helps ease abdominal pain and is good for dysentery. It can heighten body awareness and sensitivity, and can enhance libido.
DALERGIA WOOD – Lignum Dalbergiae Odoriferae
Dalergia wood can enhance skeletal/muscular reflexes and mobility.
DIOSCOREAE – Dioscoreae
These tubers have been used in some cultures as a coffee substitute. It helps support the spleen, lungs and kidneys. Dioscoreae contains up to thirteen percent diosgenin.
Diosgenin has been processed and given to patients to relieve arthritis, asthma, eczema,regulate metabolism and control fertility. Diosgenin provides the steroid building blocks for developing human sex hormones and can be used for developing muscle mass and strength. It has been used for emotional instability, chronic cough, diarrhea, and diabetes.
DONG QUAI – Angelica Sinensis
Dong quai has been called the “female ginseng” and is excellent as an all purpose women’s herb. It has been used for centuries in China for regulating the menstrual cycle and easing menstrual pain and cramping. It can be used to help women regain normal menstrual cycles after taking “the Pill.” It has proven helpful for relieving hot flashes during menopause. Dong quai can be used for insomnia and blood pressure stability for both men and women. (The affect on blood pressure can be an overall lowering although sometimes it may rise slightly first, followed by a decline).
It can reduce PMS and may help anemia, suppressed menstrual flow, uterine bleeding, abdominal pain after childbirth, dry intestines, chronic pelvic disorders and constipation and headaches due to blood deficiency. Dong quai helps the liver utilize more oxygen and therefore can be useful in treating hepatitis and cirrhosis. It may also help with abnormal protein metabolism. Dong quai helps dilate peripheral blood vessels, increase circulation, and has been used as a mild laxative. PRECAUTION: Not to be used during pregnancy.
ESPINHIERA SANTA – Maytenus Ilicifolia
Espinhiera santa has been used for nervous disorders and helps to soothe and heal stomach ulcers. It helps support the adrenal glands which may help to improve energy levels, immune response and digestion. It helps to neutralize acids throughout the body.
It helps with kidney function, skin respiration, and nourishes stomach yin. South American Indians used the tree to “cure” arthritis and rheumatism.
FENNEL – Foeniculum Vulgare
Fennel helps to release gas from the stomach and bowels and relieve its associated pain and cramping. It helps to clear phlegm from the lungs. It can act as a stimulant and diuretic which calms the nerves, improves appetite and digestion, and acts as an antispasmodic. It is helpful for nursing mothers as it promotes lactation and calms colic.
Fennel helps regulate energy to the spleen, stomach, liver and kidneys and can be used topically for joint inflammation. The dried powder is said to keep fleas away from kennels and stables. Folklore indicates it can be used as a poultice for cancerous wounds and indurations (hardening) of the mammary glands.
GLYCYRRHIZA (LICORICE) – Glycyrrhiza Glabra
Licorice is very sweet and contains glycyrrhizic acid which is fifty times sweeter than sugar. It helps support the adrenal glands and stimulate the excretion of hormones from the adrenal cortex. It has also been shown to have estrogen activity in animal studies and may be used to stabilize the menstrual cycle when coming off of “the Pill.” It is excellent for the lungs and spleen. It has been used for coughs, sore throat, asthma, stomach and duodenal ulcers, hepatitis, hysteria and food poisoning. It is also known to be a good antioxidant. Can possibly raise blood pressure.
IPORURU – Alchornia Castaneifolia
Iporuru is used by the indigenous peoples of Peru for relieving
symptoms of osteoarthritis. It helps to increase flexibility in
movement and range of motion.
JATOBA – Hymenaea Courbaril
Jatoba helps to decongest the urinary tract and can be excellent
for cystitis, and bladder and prostate infections. It has been
used as a system energizer, fortifier and decongestant. It has
been used for treating respiratory problems.
JURUBEBA – Solanum Paniculatum
Jurubeba helps stimulate digestion and can act as an anti-inflammatory to the liver and spleen. It is excellent for alcohol excesses and acts as a diuretic. Jurubeba has been used to treat uterine tumors and is rich in alkaloids.
LEMON BALM – Melissa Officinalis
Organically grown in the orient and a member of the mint family, lemon balm helps strengthen the mind and nervous system. It acts as a tonic to the heart and digestive system and as an antispasmodic. It helps support the female reproductive system and can ease tension and cramping during the menstrual cycle. It helps with emotional upset and is an antidepressant. It also helps to clear mental obstruction and nourish heart yin. It is a remedy for gas and colic, nervous tension and insomnia. It can clear mucous from the lungs. Being a mild diaphoretic it can be used to induce sweating when taken hot.
Lemon balm has been used as a salve for herpes simplex in Europe.
MACA – Lepidium Meyenii
Maca is often referred to as the Peruvian Ginseng and grows in the high Andes at nine-ten thousand feet. It is high in steroidal glycosides and is particularly helpful for increasing energy, stamina and mental clarity. It can be used for libido in both men and women and is often used for impotance and menstrual issues.
MARAPUAMA – Ptychopetalum Uncinatum
Marapuama has been used to tonify the nervous system and for cases of mild exhaustion. It helps with gastrointestinal and reproductive disorders. It has antirheumatic properties and can be used for treating stress and trauma. Because of neurosexual stimulation it can enhance the libido. It can enhance blood Qi and balance yin and yang in the triple warmer. It has been considered to be useful in prevention of some types of baldness. It is also used for neuromuscular problems.
MULUNGU – Erythrina Mulungu
Mulungu has been used to quiet hysteria from trauma or shock. It helps to balance neurotransmitters and promote peaceful sleep. It can help regulate heart palpitations and helps to regulate excess heart yang. It also can be used for hepatitis and liver dysfunctions.
PASSION FLOWER – Passiflora Incarnata
Passion flower has a calming effect. It is great for hypertensive
children. It is a mild sedative which soothes the nerves, helps
with hemorrhoids, headaches, menopause and is anantispasmodic. It regulates mood swings and high blood pressure. It has been used for seizures, hysteria, colic, diarrhea and has an antibiotic activity. Passion flower balances excess heart yang and fortifies heart yin.
PATA DE VACA – Bauhinia Forticata
Pata de vaca has been widely used in Brazil for treatment of
diabetes. It grows as a large bush or small tree. It produces
white flowers and the leaves look similar to a cow’s hoof, hence
the nicknames “Cow’s Hoof” or “Bull’s Foot.”
PAU D’ARCO – Tecoma Impetiginosa
Brazilians call pau d’arco the “divine tree.” It helps to increase
red blood cell production and helps respiratory disorders,
ulcers, candida excess, and athlete’s foot. Pau d’arco can fortify
the blood, helps to dissolve phlegm and is an antifungal.
Research in both the United States and South America shows
that pau d’arco has ingredients found to be effective against
some forms of cancer and parasites. It helps lower blood sugar
levels and promotes digestion. Lapachol, from pau d’arco, was
recently listed by Purdue University as among the most
important antitumor agents from plants.
PEACH KERNEL – Prunus Persica
Peach kernel helps promote circulation, dissolves accumulated clots, and act as a laxative for dry intestines. It is said to “loosen the belly” and open stoppages of the liver.It helps to regulate menstruation and can be used for after childbirth pain, high blood pressure, traumatic injuries, and chronic appendicitis. It helps expel worms, is good for skin diseases and has sedative effects, also contains B17. PRECAUTION: Do not take in high doses.
PEDRA HUMA CAA – Myrcia Speciosa
Pedra huma caa, nicknamed “vegetable insulin,” has been researched in Brazil for the treatment of diabetes. It was used by early South American Indians as a powerful healing poultice.
PEPPERMINT – Mentha Piperita
Peppermint is known in Columbia as “heirba buena” or the “good herb” and has been classically used as a digestive aid. It helps stimulate the stomach, cools indigestion, relieves flatulence, strengthens and soothes the bowels and helps with cramping.
Peppermint also stimulates excretion of saliva and warms the entire system. It stimulates menstruation, the bronchioles and sinuses. It is said to help with diverticulitis, insomnia, headaches, nausea, nerves, morning sickness and congested lungs.
PROPOLIS – Bee Pollen
Propolis is a brown resinous material collected by bees and used to fill cracks in their nests. It is said to have antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties. It is also used as an anti-inflammatory which can be used directly on infections.
QUEBRA PEDRA – Phyllanthus Niruri
Quebra pedra fortifies the liver and gallbladder and helps clear system obstructions. It helps with viruses of the reproductive organs and hepatitis. It is an immune system stimulator. It helps eliminate mucous and stones from the kidney, gallbladder and urinary tracts. It also increases bile production, soothes the liver and disperses calcification.
REHMANNIA (DI-HUANG) – Rehmannia Glutinosa
Rehmannia is commonly used in clinics in the orient and is called di-huang, or “yellow earth.” It is used to replenish vital force and helps with diabetes, constipation, urinary tract problems, anemia, dizziness, and regulating menstrual flow. It is protective to the
liver and helps prevent the depletion of stored glycogen, which can make it beneficial for hypoglycemia. Di-huang has an antifungal effect and has been used for candida. It can lower glucose levels and helps to reduce blood pressure while increasing circulation to the brain. It is a blood tonic and diuretic. It helps strengthen the bones and tissue and can enhance fertility. Chinese doctors have used it with licorice for the treatment of hepatitis. Rehmannia helps disperse heat from the body and alleviates night sweats and fevers.
SAFFLOWER – Carthamus Tinctorius
Safflower can be used as a diuretic and to calm the nerves and soothes hysteria. It supports the heart and liver. It helps promote circulation, dissolves clots, and can help induce menstruation. Safflower helps with post childbirth pains, stiffness and pain in joints, and internal bleeding. It can be taken hot to produce strong perspiration to remedy a cold. PRECAUTION: Pregnant women should avoid using safflower.
SAMAMBAIA – Polypodium Lepidopteris
Samambaia has been used as a general tonic for rheumatism. It helps to detoxify the body and support the immune system.
SARSAPARILLA – Smilax Officinalis
Sarsaparilla is used all over the world for a wide range of symptoms. These include lung and stomach congestion, skin diseases, herpes, syphilis, psoriasis, arthritis, rheumatism, gout, nervous disorders, epilepsy, chronic liver disorders, colds fevers, and stomach and intestinal gas. It helps promote good circulation, clear toxins, balance the glandular system, and stimulate metabolism and male sexual potency. The natural steroidal glycosides found in smilax make it a favorite for body builders and anyone who would like to be stronger and energized. It promotes rejuvenation and can be used as an anti-inflammatory.
SNAKEGOURD – Radix Trichosanthes
Snakegourd helps stimulate the production of body fluids thus relieving dryness. It can disperse phlegm, remove pus, expel toxic matter and is anti-inflammatory. Snakegourd can act as a natural antibiotic, expectorant, laxative, and can be used for abscesses, boils, bronchitis, constipation, jaundice and hemorrhoids. It helps with breast and lung tumors,
and can promote lactation. It has been shown to be excellent for diabetes. Perhaps the most interesting news is that the new “AIDS” drug “Compound Q squared ” is a refined protein called trichonanthine which is derived from the trichosanthes (snakegourd) family. It has been shown that the protein has the ability to kill an “HIV” infected cell without affecting surrounding tissue.
STEVIA – Rebaudiana Bertoni
Stevia has been used by South American Indians as a sweetening agent. It is helpful for weight loss programs because it can satisfy sugar cravings and is low in calories. It is supportive to the pancreas and has been used in treatment of diabetes, hypertension and infections.
SUMA – Pfaffia Paniculata
Suma has been called “paratodo” which means “for all things” by the Brazilians. It is said to be the South American version of ginseng. It contains up to eleven percent saponins. Derivations from saponins have been patented as anti-tumor compounds. Suma has been used to help many chronic diseases including leukemia, arthritis, asthma, high blood pressure, mononucleosis, candida, hypoglycemia, Epstein Barr Syndrome, high cholesterol, and the early stages of cancer. It seems to balance female hormones and is good for menopause. It is also used for impotency and frigidity.
TANGERINE PEEL – Chen Pi
Tangerine acts on the lungs and spleen. It helps to clear the lungs of phlegm and helps relieve hiccups. It can be used as and appetite stimulant which promotes digestion and relieves nausea and gas.
TAYUYA – Cayaponia Tayuya
Tayuya is believed to flush excess fluids from the tissues and reduce swelling. It may also relieve emotional fatigue and depression.
UNA DE GATO – Uncaria Tomentosa
Uña de Gato from the Peruvian rainforest is a favorite for stimulating the immune system. World wide research done on this powerful herb has led scientists to patent many of the single chemicals found in it for use in healing cancer, arthritis, AIDS and other diseases. However, traditional wisdom shows that using the whole plant can be far more powerful than any one isolated ingredient.
Dr. Brent W. Davis referred to Uña de Gato as “the opener of the way” because of its remarkable ability to cleanse the entire intestinal tract. Because of this ability, Uña de Gato can be used for Crohn’s Disease, hemorrhoids, parasites, leaky bowel syndrome,ulcers, gastritis, allergic disorders, diverticulitis, stabilizing intestinal flora and other gastro-intestinal issues.
Uña de Gato is also a powerful anti-inflammatory which makes it very useful for arthritis and other inflammatory diseases. It also helps to increase T-lymphocyte and macrophage production, tonify the blood, and can be used as a broad spectrum infection fighter. Uña de Gato also helps repair the lipid matrix in the cell walls and is particularity good for stopping the expansion of virus- laden cells.
At the University of Milan, Renato Rizzi led an experiment with Uña de Gato as it relates to cancer causing (mutagenic) substances in smokers. It is well known that the urine of smokers contains mutagenic substances. When given Uña de Gato for two weeks, the smokers’ urine returned to normal. This is important because it shows that Uña de Gato can help lesson the risk of developing cancers and other degenerative diseases.
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Illness is multifaceted and often involves several body systems. It can stem from any combination of emotional upsets, biochemical imbalances, toxicity issues, genetic influences and/or other reasons.
The suggestions given in this index are listed in order of importance and utilize combinations of herbs which influence several body systems that work together. This gives a greater opportunity for a more complete approach to achieving excellent health and vitality. Please read the information on the pages indicated to determine which approach would be most suitable for you.
Always consult a health care professional if there are any concerns.