Native Americans have been using medicinal plants to cure different ailments for centuries. They used these medicinal plants in various ways, from smoking them to eating them and drinking the juices. This article will talk about 11 medicinal plants used by Native Americans to treat everything from joint pain to cancer!
- 1 #1 Blackberry
- 2 #2 Hummingbird blossom
- 3 #3 Cattail
- 4 #4 Greenbrier
- 5 #5 Mint
- 6 #6 Mullein
- 7 #7 Qua lo ga Sumac
- 8 #8 Wild Ginger
- 9 #9 Wild Rose
- 10 #10 Yarrow
- 11 #11 Yellow Dock
- 12 Conclusion
- 13 Frequently asked questions about medicinal plants.
- 13.1 What herbs or medicinal plants are native to North America?
- 13.2 What did Native Americans harvest?
- 13.3 Besides plants, what are other good supplements to take for better health?
- 13.4 Where is the best place to get Omega Oils?
- 13.5 Where can I get tailored programs that give me the optimal amount of omega-3s?
Native Americans used medicinal plants like Blackberry fruit as a way to treat different ailments. Blackberry leaves were used to treat joint pain, chest pains, and sore throats. The root was taken as a laxative or stool softener.
– Blackberries are high in Vitamin C with about 30% of the daily recommended value per serving (about 32 grams). They also provide potassium, fiber, manganese, and magnesium
– If you’re looking for an anti-inflammatory that might be safe during pregnancy, it may not hurt to try blackberries! A study done in 2016 by Brigham Young University found that eating blackberries can decrease inflammation caused by exercise. Be sure to talk with your doctor before trying any plant medicinally if pregnant
– Try putting them on ice cream for dessert – they taste delicious!
#2 Hummingbird blossom
Hummingbird blossoms were also very popular for treating different ailments. Native Americans would use these medicinal plants to heal sore throats, coughs, and bronchitis with a tea made from the bark. They used the leaves as poultices to soothe inflammation on different parts of their body (like itchy insect bites)
– The Hummingbird blossom has been found to have anti-inflammatory properties in scientific studies using rats! Works best when taken orally but can be applied externally for skin irritation
– It is also said that hummingbirds are attracted only by these blossoms because they produce nectar – which contains Vitamin C, Potassium, and Sodium. Remember kids: always drink your vitamins!
Cattail, is the only medicinal plants which look like a corndog, was also a fascinating plant used by Natives. It is said that they made tea from the roots for joint pain and stomach aches. It has also been used as an antidiarrheal by drinking it or eating raw, boiled cattail shoots.
– They even used to make their arrows out of this plant! Pretty resourceful (and delicious) if you ask me
Known by some as “Pull out a sticker”, Greenbrier was used for toothaches by applying the root to the aching tooth.
– Like the rest of the medicinal plants on this list, it has many healing properties and has been used as an expectorant, diuretic, and laxative – all-important medicinal uses that we should be aware of!
Perhaps the most common plant on this list is the mint herb. Used in different cuisines worldwide, it’s no surprise the Natives also found a good purpose for them besides just the flavor.
Mint can be used as a pain reliever for headaches or rubbed onto your temples.
– It has also been used to help with indigestion and stomach aches! The leaves are crushed together into a paste that’s then applied directly to the abdomen’s skin to relieve these symptoms.
– Mint is even believed by some cultures to have medicinal properties against cancerous tumors – although this is still controversial. A 2005 study found that capsaicin (an active ingredient in pepper) affected pancreatic cells, which might stop further growths from occurring.
The NA must have known something we didn’t about how strong mint could be when it comes to curing everything.
Mullein is a lovely flower that looks a lot like a yellow feather tip. Not just for looks, Mullein has a lot of medicinal qualities that the Natives took advantage of. Mullein is especially good for respiratory problems such as coughs and colds.
– Mullein like many other medicinal plants can be made into a tea that’s beneficial to those who have asthma, bronchitis, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). It was also traditionally used in NA medicine for relieving throat pain with the addition of licorice root.
Mullein has been found to contain anti-inflammatory properties that reduce mucus production and work well against chest congestion. The leaves are high in fiber content, meaning they’re great at treating diarrhea too!
Not only does it help with all these symptoms now, but Mullein is said to heal skin conditions when applied topically due to its antimicrobial properties.
#7 Qua lo ga Sumac
Sumac is a popular spice in certain regions. Sumac also has many medicinal qualities, including acting as a diuretic, an antibiotic against common bacterial infections like pneumonia and bronchitis. It is also used to treat gastrointestinal disorders such as diarrhea and dysentery caused by many different types of microorganisms, including bacteria, protozoa, and fungi.
Sumac can be found in the US from April until November, but it’s best when harvested during warmer months because this allows more significant levels of bio-active compounds that provide these benefits to accumulate within the sumac leaves over time. Sumac is native to North America, where it grows wild, most often on sunny slopes or dry hillsides but has been introduced into Europe and Asia for its culinary uses.
#8 Wild Ginger
Wild Ginger is unrelated to the ginger you may know from the grocery store. However, it got it’s name from having a similar taste and smell. Wild Ginger is used for various things, including the treatment for headaches, colds, and stomach upset.
Native Americans would harvest wild ginger in late summer when it’s at its peak to get more bang for their buck. They knew this was the best time because, during these months, the level of bioactive compounds is higher than any other point on the medicinal plants life cycle. These benefits include anti-inflammatory properties, which provide relief from joint pain and a slew of other conditions like dysentery and nausea caused by many different types of microorganisms, including bacteria, protozoa, and fungi, to name a few!
The American Wild Ginger grows nearly everywhere across North America, where there are moist places with partial shade but can be found growing all over Europe.
#9 Wild Rose
Wild Rose is one of the most versatile medicinal plants that is used to make tea and salads. It also has a long history of medicinal use and was used by Native Americans for many different ailments.
The leaves are often mixed with other plants to make tea or added raw to salads, including the famous buttermilk salad dish that is still enjoyed today in some parts of North America!
These medicinal plants can provide relief from pain, especially menstruation-related pains like cramps which can be very painful due to hormones (especially estrogen) slowing down blood flow in veins leaving your uterus. It’s soothing properties help soothe contractions during childbirth too, which makes it a must-have when pregnant!
It’s anti-inflammatory qualities also mean it works well on skin issues like acne and helps stop bleeding from wounds.
Medicinal plants like Yarrow are especially popular with pollinators as it’s care-free. Yarrow’s properties also make it a good option for wound healing, especially when combined with another plant’s root.
Yarrow is often used to treat stomach problems and bloating as well. It can even help heal wounds if left in place until new skin has formed over the injury!
This plant’s properties also make it an excellent choice against colds or other infections, including flu-like symptoms, simply by brewing up some tea from its leaves or added raw to salads, including the famous buttermilk salad dish that is still enjoyed today in some parts of North America! Yarrow was once called ‘all-heal’ because so many Native Americans relied on this versatile herb/flower.
#11 Yellow Dock
Yellow Dock a multipurpose plant where the leaves are used in salads while the root and fruits are used for medicine. Yellow Dock is often used for the treatment of diarrhea, stomach ulcers, and constipation. It has a high amount of vitamin C, which is essential for fighting off secondary infections and strengthening the immune system to promote better health in general.
– Yellow Dock’s leaves are rich in iron, so they can help with anemia or fatigue caused by lack of nutrients.
– This plant also helps strengthen bones because it contains calcium and phosphorous and magnesium, all three essential minerals needed for bone growth and repair.
The yellow dock was often prescribed by Native American healers who called this “the great yellow medicine”. The Iroquois Indians believed that having a yellow dock nearby would bring good fortune! They were said to have carried some on them at all times.
In conclusion, nature is full of medicinal plants with healing qualities. There are many reasons to be thankful for medicinal plants. Medicinal plants can help provide a healthier diet, cleaner air, and water, fewer pesticides in our homes, less trash ending up in landfills or waterways—and the list goes on!
We hope we have given you some insight into the medicinal plants Native Americans used and knowledge of medicinal uses and strengthening the immune system to promote better health in general.
Frequently asked questions about medicinal plants.
What herbs or medicinal plants are native to North America?
There are many different types of
herbs and medicinal plants native to North America, including:
– Yellow dock
– Bee balm
– Skunk cabbage.
What did Native Americans harvest?
To survive the winters, they harvested many different types of plants.
– The Iroquois people would steep medicinal plants and leaves in hot water then drink it to treat stomach aches.
-The Cherokee Indians would crush up tree bark from chestnut trees into a powder form so they could use it internally as medicine for headaches, sore throats, fever, and pain relief.
All these plants were harvested by Native Americans who passed their knowledge on to future generations because they believed that “their healing powers come through nature.”
Besides plants, what are other good supplements to take for better health?
Another great way to boost your health besides plants is taking fish oil supplements. It contains omega fatty acids that have been shown to promote heart health, lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of developing depression.
It helps with joint pain relief because it’s a good source of phospholipids, which help improve synovial fluid in joints for smoother movement.
Where is the best place to get Omega Oils?
The place that we recommend is from the Omega Revolution. The Omega Revolution is a distributor of some of the highest grade Omega Oils that can be found on the market today. Click here to see what The Omega Revolution has to offer.
Their oils are made up of a premium blend containing natural wild fish oil, high in Omega-3 (EPA + DHA), olive polyphenols, and Vitamin D3. Their BalanceOil helps protect cells from rusting (oxidation) and adjusts the body’s Omega-6:3 balance, supporting normal brain function, heart function, and the immune system.
Where can I get tailored programs that give me the optimal amount of omega-3s?
For basic programs designed to give you the required omega-3s in your diet, check with your local doctor. They should give you some direction on what to do or perhaps refer you to another specialist in your area. If you are looking for an advanced program where the doctor may look at your entire medical history and produce a tailored plan based on your specific health concerns, Dr. James Kneller offers a private 1-on-1 concierge service; click here to check it out!