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A-Z of Botanicals


 

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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Bunch of Aniseed for herbal chai tea

Aniseed

After being threshed from the plant, the seeds are dried in trays until they become greyish brown. Once dried, aniseeds can be ground into powder that has a long shelf life when stored in airtight containers in a cool space. A tea can be made by steeping the seeds in boiling water, but the ground seeds may also be taken dry.

Uses

The seeds and the oil they produce contain thymol, terpineol and anethole, which can be used to treat pectoral affections and coughs. When used as a lozenge, aniseed is an effective expectorant. Bronchial irritation can be soothed by drinking a tea made from the seeds, and people that suffer from spasmodic asthma may also find relief from the seeds. Drops of aniseed oil may be used in a vaporizer to clear congestion and soothe coughing. Gargling with a tea made of the seeds can also provide relief for sore throat, laryngitis or pharyngitis.

The seeds have also been used to reduce flatulence, cure sleeplessness, aid nursing mothers with the production of milk and to stimulate appetite. Aniseed can also improve digestion, alleviate cramps and reduce nausea.

Some components of aniseed are known to have calming effects that can relieve anxiety and nervousness. These components include thymol, stigmaterol, linalol, terpineol, alpha-pineno and eugenol.

Aniseed has aphrodisiac properties that can increase libido. Drinking one glass of water infused with the crushed seeds each night can increase one's sex drive.The seed's healing properties can also be yielded through external means like vaporization and pastes.

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Black tea leaf for herbal chai tea

Black Tea

Rich, full-bodied black tea is made from the leaves of the Camellia Sinesis plant. Not only a delight to the taste buds, but it is brimming with health benefits too. Black tea is packed with polyphenols - antioxidants which help protect your cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. The polyphenols found in black tea also support oral health, killing bacteria and reducing the risk of infection. It contains alkylamine antigens which support the body's immune response, and is considered to have relaxing and calming effects due to the amino acid L-theanine content.


Black peppercorns for herbal chai tea

Black Pepper

Piper nigrum is a flower-producing vine in the Piperaceae family and is harvested for use as a seasoning, spice, or health supplement. When dried, the fruit is referred to as a peppercorn and contains a single seed. When fully mature it is a deep shade of red and measures about 0.20 inches....

The black powdery form of pepper with which The black powdery form of pepper with which most individuals are familiar is derived from grinding mature peppercorns until they reach a fine texture. Black pepper is extensively harvested in India where it is found in abundance. Pepper grows best in warm climates and tropical regions and Vietnam is currently the world's largest exporter of pepper.
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Bunch of Cardamom seeds for herbal chai tea

Cardamom

is well known as a spice used in Indian cooking, and is one of the primary constituents of Garam Masala. What many people don’t realize is that cardamom is also medicinal, and helps relieve digestive problems induced by garlic and onion, making it more than merely an aromatic addition to the stomach-challenging cuisine it accompanies.

Cardamom is considered one of the most valuable spices in the world due to its rich aroma and therapeutic properties. Many varieties of cardamom exist, but there are two genera which include cardamom plants. The first, known scientifically as Ellataria and commonly referred to as green or true cardamom, is found mainly in India. Cardamom grown in Asia is part of the genus Amomum, and goes by an assortment of common names, such as brown cardamom, Java cardamom, Bengal cardamom, Kravan, white cardamom, Siamese cardamom, and red cardamom.

Both Ellataria and Amomum are part if the Ginger family (Zingiberaceae).

Cardamom is farmed in only a few places in the world, including Sri Lanka, China, Laos, Nepal, Vietnam, pockets of India, and Guatemala. It grows uncultivated more rarely, limited to the rich, dense soils of certain South Asian forests. Despite these limitations, the ground seeds of cardamom, as well as intact seeds often within pods, are widely available for purchase.

As a member of the ginger family, cardamom grows perennially and produces vast, fleshy root structures known as rhizomes. It has large leaves, green and white flowers, an edible but slightly bitter fruit, and large seeds. The seeds of the cardamom plant contain a variety of important minerals such as calcium, sulfur, and phosphorus. They also contain volatile oil composed of acetic and formic acids. This volatile oil, which makes up about 5 percent of the seed’s mass, has aromatic and medicinal properties, and it is what makes cardamom so valuable.

Studies confirm that cardamom oil acts as an analgesic and antispasmodic in rats and rabbits, producing relief and lowered distention and writhing within digestive systems reacting negatively to uncomfortable stimuli. This effect is the primary medicinal quality of cardamom, and Eastern cultures have been taking advantage of it for centuries.

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Cinnamon sticks for herbal chai tea

Cinnamon Sticks

True cinnamon, or Cinnamomum Zeylanicum, is the inner bark of a small evergreen tree native to Sri Lanka and was used in ancient Egypt for embalming. It was also added to food to prevent spoiling. During the Bubonic Plague, sponges were soaked in cinnamon and cloves and placed in sick rooms.

Cinnamon was the most sought after spice during explorations of the 15th and 16th centuries. Most therapeutic uses of Chinese cinnamon bark are rooted in its historical use as a traditional medicine and on laboratory and animal studies. Test-tube or animal research does not guarantee safety or effectiveness in humans, but German health authorities (Commission E) do approve of cinnamon bark for mild gastrointestinal spasms, stimulating appetite and relieving indigestion.

It is used in flatulent dyspepsia, dyspepsia with nausea, intestinal colic and digestive atony associated with cold & debilitated conditions. It is known to relieve nausea and vomiting, and because of its mild astringency it is particularly used for infantile diarrhea.

Cinnamon warms and stimulates the digestive system, useful in weak digestion, colic, griping, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, wind and distension. The tannins have an astringent action, stemming bleeding in nosebleeds, heavy periods and resolving diarrhea and catarrhal congestion

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Bunch of cloves for herbal chai tea

Cloves

Chances are, when you think of cloves, you think of the many foods flavoured by this distinctive spice. But did you know there's a lot more to this simple seasoning than meets the eye? Clove isn't just another spice in your spice cabinet - it's also a powerful health supplement with a wide variety of uses and applications.

This article will help you understand the secret life of cloves, from their ancient trip along the spice route to their modern-day use as a healing compound.

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Fennel plant used for herbal chai tea

Fennel

Rich in phytoestrogens, Fennel is often used for colic, wind, irritable bowel, kidneys, spleen, liver, lungs, suppressing appetite, breast enlargement, promoting menstruation, improving digestive system, milk flow and increasing urine flow. Fennel is also commonly....

used to treat amenhorrea, angina, asthma, anxiety, depression heartburn, water retention, lower blood pressure, boost libido, respiratory congestion, coughs and has been indicated for high blood pressure and to boost sexual desire. Fennel is a useful addition to any of the Breast Enlargement herbs and has an impressive number of other health benefits.

Fennel is also commonly used to treat amenhorrea, angina, asthma, heartburn, high blood pressure and to boost sexual desire. Fennel is a mild appetite suppressant and is used to improve the kidneys, spleen, liver and lungs.

Fennel is an effective treatment for respiratory congestion and is a common ingredient in cough remedies.

It is also used for cancer patients after radiation and chemotherapy treatments to help rebuild the digestive system. Fennel relaxes the smooth muscle lining the digestive tract (making it an antispasmodic). It also helps expel gas.

It is a tested remedy for gas, acid stomach, gout, cramps, colic and spasms. Fennel seed ground and made into tea is believed to be good for snake bites, insect bites or food poisoning. Excellent for obesity. It increases the flow of urine. It is gargled for hoarseness and sore throats.

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Ginger root used for herbal chai tea

Ginger

Ginger root (Zingiber officinale) is well known as a remedy for travel sickness, nausea and indigestion and is used for wind, colic, irritable bowel, loss of appetite, chills, cold, flu, poor circulation, menstrual cramps, dyspepsia (bloating, heartburn, flatulence), indigestion and gastrointestinal problems such as gas and stomach cramps.

Ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory herb and there has been much recent interest in its use for joint problems. It has also been indicated for arthritis, fevers, headaches, toothaches, coughs, bronchitis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, to ease tendonitis, lower cholesterol and blood-pressure and aid in preventing internal blood clots.

Ginger has been well researched and many of its traditional uses confirmed. It is well known as a remedy for travel sickness, nausea and indigestion. It is a warming remedy, ideal for boosting the circulation, lowering high blood pressure and keeping the blood thin in higher doses. Ginger is anti-viral and makes a warming cold and flu remedy. Ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory herb and there has been much recent interest in its use for joint problems.

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Green tea plant and leaves used for herbal chai tea

Green Tea

Used to regulate blood sugar and blood pressure, boost the immune system, prevent ulcers, control inflammation, viral colds and flu, prevent gum disease, cavities, and bad breath. It also been indicated for lowering cholesterol, preventing heart disease, osteoporosis and blood clots....

Green tea has been the focus of exciting new studies indicating its effectiveness in raising metabolism for weight loss and preventing & fighting cancer and other disease with its super antioxidants.

It has a long list of potential health benefits and is used to regulate blood sugar and blood pressure, boost the immune system, prevent ulcers, control inflammation, viral colds and flu, prevents gum disease, cavities, and bad breath. It also been indicated for lowering cholesterol, preventing heart disease, osteoporosis and blood clots.

Green Tea is well-established as a potent source of healing antioxidants called polyphenols, the same beneficial compounds found in fruits and vegetables and even in red wine. The leaf also boasts the presence of a superstar antioxidant called EGCG (epigallocatechin-gallate) as well as other notable healing substances including fluoride, catechins, and tannins.

Tannins are thought to help the body discharge toxins due to pollution and to accelerate the metabolism of fats.

Chemical analysis has revealed that green tea contains significant amounts of water-soluble vitamins and minerals, particularly zinc, manganese, potassium, niacin, folic acid and vitamin C. In fact, one cup of green tea has more vitamin C than an orange. Researchers at the University of Kansas attributed green tea with 100 times the antioxidant strength of vitamin C, and 25 times that of vitamin E. A United States Department of Agriculture study found that the antioxidant capacity of green tea is better than twenty-two various fruits and vegetables.

It aids in treating high cholesterol, high triglycerides, hypertension, and stimulates immune functions. Green Tea may actually lower the risks for arteriosclerosis. Research has shown that it guards against cardiovascular disease by lowering cholesterol levels, improving the ratio of LDL cholesterol to HDL cholesterol, reduces platelet aggregation (clumping or clotting of blood cells), and lowers blood pressure.

This herb eases mental fatigue and has been used in treating digestive tract infections. The Chinese often use it to treat migraine headaches. It can also help to prevent plaque buildup on the teeth, and since the leaves contain a natural fluoride, may be helpful in preventing tooth decay. It can help to regulate blood sugar and insulin levels. Swiss researchers even have preliminary evidence that green tea accelerates the burning of fat calories in people who are overweight.

A small but interesting 1999 study reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported increased energy expenditure and fat oxidation in men who took a green tea extract as opposed to a placebo or caffeine alone.

Many of the medicinal claims made for green tea haven't been examined outside a laboratory setting, specifically in clinical trials that assess the plant's health effects in people. On the other hand, the pure research findings are exciting and there certainly appears to be no harm in integrating this extract into your daily diet.

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Jasmine green tea for herbal tea

Jasmine Green Tea

White Jasmine flowers are picked early in the day and layered with green tea when the small petals are closed. Overnight, the petals open, releasing their light yet perfumed, floral fragrance into the tea, giving it a delicate, refreshing taste. It is packed with polyphenols including flavonoids and catechins which function as antioxidants, which help to protect your cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. It's catechin and caffeine content also help to increase the metabolism. Catechins have other biological effects too, including fighting bacteria and inflammation.

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Lemon grass for chai herbal tea

Lemon Grass

A wonderful thing about the citrus-scented lemon myrtle is that, in addition to being flavorful and refreshing, it has a number of health benefits. It is a powerful antioxidant that can ward off illnesses, and it can be used as an antiseptic. It comes in many forms and can be taken in a variety of different ways so you are not limited to a boring routine.

It can be used in cooking to spice up a recipe, taken as a tea or applied topically in the form of essential oils. Its rich lemon aroma is both pleasant and soothing. Lemon myrtle is used to treat a diversity of ailments from throat disorders to gastric problems, and it is sold in many health and supplement stores.

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Liquorice roots for chai herbal tea

Liquorice Roots

Licorice root contains many anti-depressant compounds and is an excellent alternative to St. John's Wort. As a herbal medicine it has an impressive list of well documented uses and is probably one of the most over-looked of all herbal wonders. Licorice is useful for many ailments including...

asthma, athlete's foot, baldness, body odor bursitis, canker sores, chronic fatigue, depression, colds and flu, coughs, dandruff, emphysema, gingivitis and tooth decay, gout, heartburn, HIV, viral infections, fungal infections, ulcers, liver problems, Lyme disease, menopause, psoriasis, shingles, sore throat, tendinitis, tuberculosis, ulcers, yeast infections, prostate enlargement and arthritis.

Hundreds of potentially healing substances have been identified in licorice as well, including compounds called flavonoids and various plant estrogens (phytoestrogens). The herb's key therapeutic compound, glycyrrhizin (which is 50 times sweeter than sugar) exerts numerous beneficial effects on the body, making licorice a valuable herb for treating a host of ailments. It seems to prevent the breakdown of adrenal hormones such as cortisol (the body's primary stress-fighting adrenal hormone), making these hormones more available to the body.

It has a well-documented reputation for healing ulcers. It can lower stomach acid levels, relieve heartburn and indigestion and acts as a mild laxative.

It can also be used for irritation, inflammation and spasm in the digestive tract. Through its beneficial action on the liver, it increases bile flow and lowers cholesterol levels.

Licorice also appears to enhance immunity by boosting levels of interferon, a key immune system chemical that fights off attacking viruses. It also contains powerful antioxidants as well as certain phytoestrogens that can perform some of the functions of the body's natural estrogens; very helpful during the menopause. Glycyrrhizinic acid also seems to stop the growth of many bacteria and of viruses such as influenza A.

In the respiratory system it has a similarly soothing and healing action, reducing irritation and inflammation and has an expectorant effect, useful in irritating coughs, asthma and chest infections.

It has an aspirin-like action and is helpful in relieving fevers and soothing pain such as headaches. Its anti-allergenic effect is very useful for hay fever, allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis and bronchial asthma. Possibly by its action on the adrenal glands, licorice has the ability to improve resistance to stress. It should be thought of during times of both physical and emotional stress, after surgery or during convalescence, or when feeling tired and run down.

Licorice with glycyrrhizin may help to:

Control respiratory problems and sore throat. Licorice eases congestion and coughing by helping to loosen and thin mucus in airways; this makes a cough more "productive," bringing up phlegm and other mucus bits. Licorice also helps to relax bronchial spasms. The herb also soothes soreness in the throat and fights viruses that cause respiratory illnesses and an overproduction of mucus.

Lessen symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia. By enhancing cortisol activity, glycyrrhizin helps to increase energy, ease stress and reduce the symptoms of ailments sensitive to cortisol levels, such as chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromylagia.

Combat hepatitis. Licorice both protects the liver and promotes healing in this vital organ. The herb's anti-inflammatory properties help calm hepatitis-associated liver inflammation. Licorice also fights the virus commonly responsible for hepatitis and supplies valuable antioxidant compounds that help maintain the overall health of the liver.

Treat PMS and menstrual problems. The phytoestrogens in licorice have a mild estrogenic effect, making the herb potentially useful in easing certain symptoms of PMS (premenstrual syndrome), such as irritability, bloating and breast tenderness. Although the glycyrrhizin in licorice actually inhibits the effect of the body's own estrogens, the mild estrogenic effect produced by licorice's phytoestrogens manages to override this inhibiting action.

Prevent heart disease. Recent studies have found that by limiting the damage from LDL ("bad") cholesterol, licorice may discourage artery-clogging plaque formation and contribute to the healthy functioning of the heart. Research indicates that modest doses of licorice (100 mg a day) have this effect.

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Nutmeg for chai herbal tea

Nutmeg

A spice from the nutmeg tree (myristica fragrans), nutmeg is native to several Indonesian islands. It has a warm, slightly sweet yet spicy aroma and flavour. Nutmeg has a strong nutritional content and contains fibre, manganese, thiabin, vitamin B6, folate, magnesium and copper. It's high fibre content helps to support the digestive system. Nutmeg is also considered to behold pain-relieving properties and has traditionally been used as a home remedy for insomnia, with warm milk.

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Peppermint leaves for chai herbal tea

Peppermint Leaves

Mint is a popular flavoring in many recipes and beverages. It is also beneficial to one's health and wellness as an herbal supplement. Its Latin name is Mentha x piperita and is derived from a combination of phrases: Mentha was a Greek nymph from mythology who became a plant through a magical transformation.

Piperita is the Latin word for pepper. Mint has many positive properties that can treat a host of issues in the human body. People have become very creative in harvesting its leaves and finding many ways to use this helpful herb. Whether a sprig of mint is added to a drink, the leaves are chewed, or its used in other forms, it should be a standard in any kitchen.

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Rooibos plants and herbs for chai herbal tea

Rooibos Tea

It's often the case that the most beneficial plants and herbs are located in the most impenetrable jungles and swamps! This is certainly true for Rooibos (pronounced roy-bose). Rooibos in Afrikaans means red bush. Born in the jungles of South Africa there lives a plant resembling a broom.

Its leaves form healing teas and can heal skin problems. Its name is Rooibos, or Red Bush Rooibos is located in a small corner of South Africa and must be harvested by hand, for the proliferation of plant life prohibits the entry and operation of machinery. Rooibos can be used when green for its beneficial health components, but in its mature state, when it's red, it contains other varied health benefits. Rooibos can be used raw, when the leaf is cut, to rub onto the skin to treat rashes, cuts and abrasions. The leaves can be ground and brewed as a tea or they can be made into an aromatic for the alleviation of symptoms of bronchitis, asthma and allergies.

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Spearmint leafs for chai herbal tea

Spearmint

Spearmint is very closely related to peppermint with regard to its active ingredients and ways in which it is used for health benefits. Medicinal uses of both mint preparations aid in digestion and to reduce flatulence. Spearmint is used for relief of nausea, cold symptoms, stomach distress, headaches and indigestion.

Spearmint oil and leaves are used in the preparation of medicines. Digestive disorders such as indigestion and diarrhea are sometimes relieved by spearmint, along other maladies that include irritable bowel syndrome and gall bladder problems. Use in relieving sore throats, toothaches and headaches is common, and some people find relief by using spearmint as a local pain killer or as an antispasmodic medication for cramps.

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White pepper corns for Chai herbal tea

White Pepper

The fruit of the pepper plant (piper nigrum), white pepper is ground from dried, ripe fruit that has had the outer layer removed. It is native to India and Indonesia and is a member of the piperaceae family and has a distinctive taste. White pepper is rich in vitamins K, A and C and is a good source of dietary fibre. Its mineral content is essential for healthy bone development and strength, and it also acts as a calminative to aid digestion. White pepper is also considered to act as a decongestant, as it relieves nasal congestion by clearing the nasal tract and fighting infection. It is also brimming with antioxidants due to its flavonoid and vitamin content.