This is the third blog in the series of helpful herbs, and
today we will be looking at Western, Chinese, and Ayurvedic herbs that begin
with the letter C. Herbs can be easily incorporated into your day to day life
to improve your health and wellness. Generally these herbs are safe to use.
There may be some contraindications in regard to prescription medications,
health conditions, and in pregnant or nursing mothers. Please always check with
a qualified physician before taking any herbal supplements.
Western Herb -
Calendula (Calendula Officinalis)
Parts used: whole flower or just the petals.
Components: essential oil that has an antibiotic effect, calenden
triterpenoids, glycosides, beta carotene, saponins, lutein, B- carotene,
anthocyanins, plant fiber mucilage, organic acids and various enzymes.
Antiseptic and antibiotic components helps to heal minor wounds. Reduces
inflammation and pus formation while promoting blood circulation that promotes
healing and prevents scarring. I make a skin salve with calendula as one of the
ingredients that we use for every major and minor wound in our household. It
has even proven effective on my cats wounds when he has gotten into a fight
with the neighbors kitty!
Helps to stimulate digestion when taken as a tea; drink 2-3 cups per day. Can
also be used as a gargle to soothe a sore throat. Pour 1 cup of boiling water
over 1-2 tsp of dried calendula petals. Steep this for 10 minutes then strain
and drink or gargle.
Chinese Herb - Corydalis
(member of the papaveraceae family) Disclaimer:
Not to be used when pregnant or nursing or if you have
an irregular heartbeat.
Parts used: root
Components: DHCB (dehydrocorybulbine) alkaloid
A blood moving herb that has proven effective for pain
relief. Blocks inflammation and nerve pain and has been useful in rheumatism,
sciatic pain, back injuries, liver and gallbladder pain, tremors and spasms.
In a balm or salve applied where there is pain.
3 to 9 grams in 2 to 3 doses taken daily or in granules dissolved in hot water
sipped throughout the day. May have some
interactions with prescription medications like sedatives, or anti arrhythmic
drugs. Check with your doctor before
taking. This is a promising herb in natural pain relief without the risks
of addiction that many pain medications carry.
Ayurvedic Herb -
Castor oil (Ricinuscommunis)
Parts used: expressed oil from the seed
Components: hydroxylate-fatty acid, triglycerides, omega 9,
90% ricinoleic acid
An anti-inflammatory and analgesic herb
when applied in a salve, or a moist pack, to muscles, sprains, strains, wounds,
warts, sciatic, cuts, and dry skin. I use this oil, with other pain relieving
herbs and essential oils, in my herbal muscle rub and it works wonderfully for
Has been used for constipation relief when taken in small doses. That would be
the only way to take because it tastes terrible! This oil has also been used to
induce labor. The ricinoleic acid binds to cellular receptors that are
prostaglandin receptors. These receptors have various roles in the body, from
changing structure in neurons to controlling how blood clots. In the case of
ingesting castor oil the ricinoleic acid binds to smooth muscle cells on the
walls of the small intestine and causes contractions. The science explains why
it’s effective but again it’s a tough oil to choke down!
That's it for herbs beginning with the letter C. Check back
next week for herbs beginning with the letter D.
The Complete Guide to Natural Healing, International Masters
The way of Chinese Herbs, Michael Tierra, L.A.c., O.M.D.
Current Biology, January 20, 2014
The way of Ayurvedic Herbs, Marta Purkh Singh Khalsa &