Medicinal Herb Chart

Over 499 Healing Herbs - Benefits, Side Effects and Uses



Use the alphabetical list or the herb property list to find information on the healing properties and actions of medicinal plants.

  • Herb Properties
  • Herbs Alphabetical by Common Name

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    See List Herbs by Botanical Name

Anti-inflammatory Herbs

Inflammation is both a root cause and a symptom in a wide variety of health conditions. Eating a plant based diet and that includes herbs is in itself anti-inflammatory, as opposed to a meat and dairy heavy diet. Almost all herbs and plants are anti-inflammatory to some degree, some with a more pronounced action than others where the effect is secondary yet still an important part of the overall synergistic effect of the herb. Since this makes a complete listing of all plants with any inflammatory action quite long, the herbs listed below are just a subset of the more potent ones. Anti-inflammatory herbs can be used to decrease inflammation and painful swelling in arthritis , skin disorders, and may have an important role in the prevention of cancers and other serious conditions linked to chronic inflammation.


  • Alfalfa Alfalfa, Medicago sativa L. :
    Perennial Plant : Alfalfa is not recommended as primary treatment for any condition, alfalfa is a tonic herb, one that supports health by nourishing the body. Alfalfa is of special interest to women because of its estrogenic activity....
  • Aloe Vera Gel Aloe Vera Gel, Aloe vera :
    Tender Perennial succulent : The leaf juices of the aloe plant have important medicinal uses, making aloe one of the most respected medicinal plants found in many gels, creams and lotions....
  • Andiroba Oil Andiroba Oil, Carapa guianensis :
    : Andiroba oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and is an anti-inflammatory due to the presence of compounds known as limonoids....
  • Apple Apple, Malus domestica : Apple cider vinegar, wine vinegar
    : In addition to the fruit of the apple tree, its bark, flowers, and leaves all have healthy properties. Apples contain malic and tartaric acids, and salts of potassium, sodium, magnesium, and iron. Regular consumption can even lower cholesterol and help ...
  • Ashwagandha root Ashwagandha root, Withania somnifera : Ashwaganda, Ajagandha, Indian ginseng, Winter cherry
    Hardy annual/Tender perennial : It is often touted as the Indian version of ginseng because, like ginseng, ashwaganda is revered as a non-specific tonic, an adaptogen that is used alone or as an ingredient in compounds designed to target a variety of conditions....
  • Balm of Gilead Balm of Gilead, Populus spp : Poplar Buds
    Evergreen tree : The dried, unopened buds of the poplar tree are used in ointments and skin treatments to reduce pain and inflammation....
  • Balsam of Peru Balsam of Peru, Myroxylon pereirae : Tolu Balsam
    Tropical Tree : Balsam of Peru, or Tolu, is used mainly in aromatherapy and perfumery for its vanilla and cinnamon scent. The resinous oil is antiseptic and healing to the skin....
  • Barberry Barberry, Berberis vulgaris L. : Huang Lian, Chinese Goldthread, Pepperidge-bush, Daru Haridra
    Shrub : Both Chinese goldthread (native to the mountains of Szechwan province in China) and the barberry known in Europe and North America are rich natural sources of berberine....
  • Barley Grass Barley Grass, Hordeum vulgare :
    Grass : Young barley grass is one of a group of 'green' or superfoods, along with wheat grass and blue green algae, that are characterized by their emerald green hues...
  • Bilberry Bilberry, Vaccinium myrtillus : Huckleberry
    Shrub : The huckleberry, cranberry and blueberry, native to North America are close relatives of the bilberry of England. All of these species are members of the Vaccinium genus and share many common traits and healthy properties....
  • Birch bark & leaf Birch bark & leaf , Betula alba : White Birch, Sweet Birch, Cherry Birch
    Deciduous Tree : Teas of the birch bark contain salicylate, the compound found in aspirin. Birch is valued for its detoxifying actions and is used to treat UTIs, skin eruptions, and pain....
  • Black Seed oil Black Seed oil, Nigella sativa : Kalonjii, Black cumin, black caraway, Roman-coriander, fennel-flower
    Annual Herb : Black cumin seed oil is used as a healthy dietary supplement. Black seed oil contains fatty acids, vitamins and minerals in a unique cell structure. ...
  • Boneset Boneset, Eupatorium perfoliatum : Common Thorough wort, Agueweed, Indian Sage
    : This Native American remedy for colds and fever was adopted by early settlers to America. Only the advent of aspirin displaced boneset as the popular choice for colds and fever....
  • Borage Seed Oil Borage Seed Oil, Borago officinalis :
    Annual herb : Borage seed oil is used both as skin treatment and a dietary supplement. Known for its naturally high GLA content, borage is recommended for use in autoimmune conditions....
  • Boswellia (Frankincense) Boswellia (Frankincense), Boswellia thurifera : Olibanum, Indian Frankincense, Arabic Frankincense, and Salai guggal
    Resinous tree : Boswellic acids are often combined with glucosamine to relieve the joint pain and inflammation of arthritis...
  • Bupleurum Bupleurum, Bupleurum chinense : chai hu, Chinese thorowax root
    Perennial herb : Bupleurum is an important Chinese tonic herb for the liver and circulatory system....
  • Calendula Calendula, Calendula officinalis : Pot marigold
    perennial herbaceous plants : Calendula flower oil is one of the first herbs to consider in minor first aid applications. Particularly good treatment for cuts, scrapes, bruises, and minor wounds....
  • Cat's Claw Cat's Claw, Uncaria tomentosa : una de gato
    Tropical Vine : Cat's claw bark is traditionally used for inflammatory arthritis and intestinal complaints such as stomach ulcers....
  • Chamomile Chamomile, Matricaria recutita : Camomile, Chamomilla, German chamomile
    Annual herb : Chamomile is an excellent remedy for any emotional disorders that involve stress, anxiety, and tension. The apple-like aroma relaxes and calms and the tea is used home remedies....
  • Chickweed Chickweed, Stellaria media : Starweed
    Annual/Perennial Herb : Chickweed is best known for it's ability to cool inflammation and speed healing as a poultice or ointment for skin irritations, skin abscesses and boils...
  • Chicory root Chicory root, Cichorium intybus : Succory, Blue Sailors
    perennial herb : Know best as a caffeine-free substitute for coffee, chicory also has been used in traditional medicine as a bitter digestive tonic and a specific treatment for gallstones....
  • Chrysanthemum Chrysanthemum, Chrysanthemum morifolium, C. sinense : Mums, Ju Hua, Chu Hua,Florist's Chrysanthemum
    herbaceous perennial : We value the chrysanthemum for their burst of fall color that signals the approach of winter, but like many ornamental plants, chrysanthemums have an ancient reputation in the East as a medicinal plant. ...
  • Cilantro Cilantro, Coriandrum sativum : Chinese parsley, cilantro
    Annual Herb : The leaves of young cilantro plants, which resemble flat-leaved parsley, are staples in Mexican, Chinese and Thai cooking, as are the roots. ...
  • Copaiba Balsam Copaiba Balsam, Copaifera Officinalis : balsam, copaiva, Jesuit's balsam, copal, palo de aceite, capivi
    tropical tree : Copaiba is used topically to relieve inflammation and help heal athlete's foot, eczema and psoriasis, and heals damaged skin with minimal scarring. ...
  • Coptis Coptis , Coptis spp : Chinese goldthread, Huang Lian, Figwortflower,Canker Root
    perennial : Coptis root is used in much the same manner as other berberine containing herbs; barberry, goldenseal, and Oregon grape root....
  • Corn Silk Corn Silk, Zea mays : Indian Corn
    : Corn silks are the silky tassels running the length of an ear of corn. Those same strings you work so hard to get out of an ear of corn soothe and relax the urinary tubes, and are believed to have a beneficial effect on the kidneys....
  • Cornflowers Cornflowers, Centaurea cyanus : Bachelor’s-button, , bluebottle, bluebonnets
    Self-seeding annuals : The petals of cornflowers are the part used in herbal folklore. According to M. Grieve “ cornflowers are considered to have tonic, stimulant and emmenagogue properties, with action similar to that of Blessed Thistle.&...
  • Cumin Cumin, Cuminum cyminum : cummin
    herbaceous annual : Cumin is aromatic, containing up to 4 percent essential oil, warm, spicy and slightly sweet. ...
  • Devil's Claw Devil's Claw, Harpagophytum procumbens : grapple plant, wood spider
    perennial vine : Devils claw offers slow but sure relief of joint pain caused by both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, and it has also been shown to relieve muscle pain and enhance mobility ...
  • Echinacea Echinacea, Echinacea angustifolia : Purple coneflower
    Herb : There are dozens of dozens of biochemical compounds that act in therapeutic synergy in this complex plant that support disease resistance in several ways...
  • Feverfew Feverfew, Tanacetum parthenium :
    Perennial herb : Feverfew has been used in the treatment of headaches since the first century. It has also been used for inflammation, arthritis, menstrual discomforts, fever, and other aches and pains....
  • Figwort Figwort, Scrophularia nodosa : Carpenter's square
    Herbaceous perennial : Figwort is used in salves and poultices to soothe inflamed skin in cases of psoriasis and eczema, and to heal burns...
  • Ginkgo biloba Ginkgo biloba, Ginkgo biloba L. :
    Tree : Allergies and asthma improve with ginkgo. The leaves contains anti-inflammatory chemicals and natural antihistamines...
  • Grindelia Grindelia, Grindelia spp : Gumplant, tarweed, rosinweed
    scrub bush : Gridelia which grows wild in the Western states is better known as a external skin treatment for rashes, burns and insect bites. Gridelia was traditionally used for coughs and asthmatic conditions....
  • Immortelle Oil Immortelle Oil, Helichrysum angustifolium : Everlasting, Strawflower
    flowering plant : Helichrysum is known for its anti-inflammatory, analgesic and regenerative properties....
  • Jamaican Dogwood Jamaican Dogwood, Piscidia piscipula : Florida Fishposion Tree
    : Jamaican dogwood is well known as a specific for migraine headaches and neuralgia and for treatment of insomnia caused by pain, muscle tension and stress....
  • Joe-pye weed Joe-pye weed, Eupatorium purpureum : Gravel or kidney root, Trumpet weed, purple or tall boneset
    Perennial : Joe Pye weed is named after a legendary Indian healer who used a decoction of the plant to cure typhus fever in colonial America. ...
  • Marsh Mallow Root Marsh Mallow Root, Althaea officinalis L. : Marshmallow, Wymote
    Perennial Herb : Marshmallow is a soothing and healing plant mainly due to it's high mucilage content. Marshmallow is added to cough and cold formulations for the treatment of harsh coughs, it acts as a mild expectorant and helps coat sore throats. Marshmallow's tannins ...
  • Mullein Mullein, Verbascum spp. : Flannel Leaf, Mullein Dock, Aaron's Rod
    Biennial : The ancient reputation that mullein enjoyed in both in Europe and Asia of having the power to exorcise evil spirits may be attributed to the magic mullein oil can perform on a ear ache....
  • Oats Oats, Avena sativa L. : Groats. Oatmeal. Oatstraw
    : Oats have always had a reputation as a wholesome, healthy food. The grain is a rich source of complex sugars used by the body. Green oatstraw teas, oatstraw glycerin tincture, and oatmeal poultices and baths...
  • Oregon Grape root Oregon Grape root, Mahonia aquifolium : Mountain Grape, holly leaved barberry
    Evergreen shrub : Herbalists use the immune-stimulating and bacteria fighting properties of Oregon grape root in the treatment of bacterial diarrhea, intestinal parasites, and eye infections. Oregon grape shared many of the properties of goldenseal, but is not botanically ...
  • Pineapple Pineapple, Ananas comosus :
    herbaceous perennial plant : Pineapple has been used as a medicinal plant in several native cultures. Pineapple contains a proteolytic enzyme bromelain, which digests food by breaking down protein....
  • Sarsaparilla Root Sarsaparilla Root, Smilax sarsaparilla : zarzaparrilla
    perennial trailing vine : Sarsaparilla makes a good all round tonic, and the spicy, pleasant smelling root is what gave old fashioned root beer its bite and is the part used medicinally....
  • Sea Buckthorn Oil Sea Buckthorn Oil, Hippophae rhamnoides : Sallow Thorn, Yellow Spine
    deciduous shrub : Sea Buckthorn oil is used in healing skin injuries, burns, wounds, eczema, lesions, sun damaged skin, and abrasions. ...
  • Shea Nut Butter Shea Nut Butter, Butyrospermum parkii : Vitellaria, Karité
    tree : Shea butter is rich in vitamins, minerals and fatty acids that rejuvenate and hydrate skin and hair. Use shea butter to treat damaged skin, help heal wounds, or just pamper yourself . ...
  • Soapwort Soapwort, Saponaria officinalis : Bouncing Bet, Fuller's herb, Sweet William, Bruisewort, Old Maids Pink
    perennial plant, vespertine flower : The common name of this member of the carnation family indicates it's traditional uses in washing. The hormone-like saponins contained in the root produce a lather on contact with water. It has an ancient reputation used both internally and externally for...
  • Spikenard Spikenard, Aralia racemosa : Indian Root, Spignet, Fleabane
    rhizomatous herbaceous perennial : Spikenard root has a mild, pleasant licorice like flavor, often used as a substitute for sarsaparilla, though unrelated botanically, Spikenard is a relative of ginseng....
  • Spilanthes Spilanthes, Spilanthes acmella :
    Tropical perennial : In Brazilian Spilanthes is commonly referred to as the toothache plant for its ability to numb the gums and mouth and calm tooth pain when the flower buds and new leaves are chewed. Spilanthes works in a similar fashion to echinacea in treating pain...
  • Tamanu Oil Tamanu Oil, Calophyllum inophyllum : Foraha, kamanu
    tree : Fiji natives believed the Tamanu tree was a sacred gift of nature and that gods hid in its branches. It was their answer to skin protection from hot sun, high humidity and ocean wind....
  • Turmeric Turmeric, Curcuma longa L. : Curcuma, Indian saffron
    herbaceous perennial plant : Turmeric is a mild aromatic stimulant used in the manufacture of curry powders and mustards.The curcumin in turmeric has recently been shown effective in the fight against breast cancer, Alzheimer's and arthritis...
  • White Peony root White Peony root, Paeonia albiflora : Bai Shao Yao, Peony root, and Chinese Peony
    herbaceous perennial : The white peony is one of the oldest remedies in traditional Chinese medicine. Peony root is the part valued in Chinese medicine to treat conditions such as abnormal menses, night sweats, abdominal pain, sores and injuries....
  • White Willow Bark White Willow Bark, Salix Alba :
    Deciduous tree : White willow may be the oldest herb known to treat pain and inflammation. White willow contains salicin, a precursor to the compound in aspirin. ...
  • Wild Cherry Bark Wild Cherry Bark, Prunus serotina : Black Cherry, chokecherry
    Deciduous Tree : Wild Black cherry is a very effective herbal cough remedy. The main use of the bark is to still irritated, nagging coughs. ...
  • Witch Hazel Witch Hazel, Hamamelis virginiana : Spotted Alder, Winterbloom, Snapping Hazelnut
    Deciduous shrub : A general and all purpose remedy for abrasions, burns, scalds, insect bites and other inflammatory conditions of the skin....
  • Yarrow Yarrow, Achillea millefolium : Milfoil, Old Man's Pepper, Nosebleed
    Perennial herb : Yarrow is one of the best-known herbal remedies for fevers and bleeding. The chemical makeup of yarrow is complex, containing many active medicinal compounds ...
  • Yucca Root Yucca Root, Yucca spp : Adam's Needle, Soap Tree, Mojave yucca
    Monocot perennial shrub : Yucca's most promising use is in the treatment of both osteo and rheumatoid arthritis. The steroidal saponins in yucca are used in the production of synthetic steroid drugs....