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The Role of Herbal Supplements in Therapy

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For centuries, we have relied on the healing power of herbs. This is evident among traditional Chinese and Indian medicine who understand the importance of the role played by herbs in treating disease. Fast forward – our modern life seems unkind to ourselves.

But the stress of modern day living can be counteracted by making some straightforward lifestyle changes.Also the symptoms of nutrient deficiencies, physical injuries, and mental stress are potentially treatable with natural herbal remedies.

Modern medicine tend to discard herbal remedies, believing pharmacological drugs to be a superior means of treating disease and health disorders. However, modern nutritional science has extensively studied some herbs and their medicinal properties, with some research suggesting that some natural remedies are as effective, if not superior, to drug treatments.

Here are examples of herbal supplements that relieve a variety of physical and mental ailments. You might consider giving them a try before you reach for the medicine cabinet.

Improve digestion with coriander

This powerful digestive aid is popular in Indian and Thai dishes. Coriander have a sharp, distinctive flavour and aroma. Coriander improves the health of the digestive tract, reducing levels of intestinal and colonic inflammation. Coriander soaks up heavy metals, toxins, and free radicals from your blood. This cleansing effect reduces systemic inflammation, eliminating bloating and gastrointestinal distress from consumption of inflammatory foods, and or medications.

Calendula: The natural antiseptic

The calendula flower looks a lot like a daisy. This potent antimicrobial plant contains polyphenols that provide an antiseptic, antifungal, and antibacterial effect.

Calendula lends its medicinal properties to natural cosmetics and baby rash creams. The anti-inflammatory effect of the crushed flower extract soothes the skin and accelerates the healing of wounds.

Soothe stress with lemon balm

Lemon balm promotes a balanced mood, removing the symptoms of stress and anxiety. Clear your mind with a topical application of this potent natural remedy. Rub lemon balm onto your temples and the base of your skull for stress relief. Use topical administration of lemon balm to prevent skin and blood diseases such as herpes simplex.

The plant-based antioxidant compounds, known as polyphenol flavonoids, have an antispasmodic effect on the nervous and digestive systems when taken internally. Prepare lemon balm with chamomile tea for a soothing beverage that calms the mind and body.

Stop depression with lavender

Depression affects nearly half of adults in the UK. Living with depression demotivates and disconnects you from the joys of life. The sweet scent of lavender lifts mood and revitalises the mind, slowing the effects of depression and alleviating tension from mental stress.

Add the extract of this potent medicinal herb to your bathwater to soothe the symptoms of depression. Lavender heals the skin and the mind; it can be added to creams and lotions to help the skin recover from sunburn or acne breakouts.

Ashwagandha for vitality

This potent herbal remedy has a legacy extending back for centuries in traditional medicine. Ashwagandha improves vitality, removing the stress of a modern lifestyle that can lead to adverse health conditions like insomnia and fatigue.

Ashwagandha blocks excess cortisol from entering the bloodstream. Cortisol, otherwise known as ‘the stress hormone’ unleashes havoc on your nervous system, creating hormonal imbalances that develop into severe medical conditions that require hormone replacement therapy. Cortisol blocker supplements can help with stress, stopping the hormone in its tracks before it does any damage. 

Boost energy with rosemary

This perennial herb improves energy levels and stabilises mood. Rosemary is known as ‘the great reviver’ because of its energy-boosting properties that increase the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain.

Next time you’re feeling exhausted, try a herbal tea with rosemary for a second wind. Rosemary is more effective than caffeine at waking you up, so toss the espresso and try some rosemary instead. An infused tea provides a smooth flow of energy without the caffeine jitters.


When it comes to alternative medicine, Sara Calabro of Every health reminds us to ‘think balance – taking the best healthcare from both the traditional and alternative sides of medicine could be your best option’. 

Helen Bradfield did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh.  She has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.

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