Here are a few of the popular Jamaican herbal preparations for health and healing.
Remember, with any use of herbs for health purposes be sure to:
- Read widely about any potential concerns. Note this is an indicative list and not meant to be comprehensive or exhaustive.
- Proceed with caution if you are allergy-prone.
- Talk to your doctor about the possible interactions between prescribed medication and herbs.
- If you are pregnant or nursing, double check for safety
- If you plan on giving herbs to a child, double check for safety.
- Be careful of look-alike plants as they could be poisonous.
Aloe Vera is a versatile plant known for anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antiviral, and energy-giving properties. Aloe vera is used to fight infections, boost the immune system, reduce inflammation in arthritis, improve the skin, treat ulcers and heartburn, relieve dental problems, improve cardiovascular health, detox, and diminish diabetes (explore Aloe Vera: Nature’s Gift To Health)
Bissy (Kola Nut)
Bissy is the local name for kola nut. It is widely regarded for its medicinal properties because of its effect as an antidote for poisons. It relieves menstrual cramps, headache, gout, rheumatism, jaundice, nausea, vomiting, and indigestion. Bissy is further used in birth control preparations, aids in the control of diabetes and weight.
Cerasee (Momordica Charantia)
This is the most feared tea because of its bitter taste. It is believed to be a blood cleanser and sugar control agent for diabetes. It is widely accepted that a fair consumption of this weekly will prevent colds, flu, headaches, jaundice, and bellyache. It is also said to reduce the risk of heart disease, lung cancer, and high blood pressure.
Fevergrass (Cymbopogon Citratus)
Most people in the rural areas of the island drink it to recover quickly from high fever, hence the name. However, some like the taste, therefore, it is consumed day or night. Fever grass also provides relief from nervous headaches, as well as stomach and urinary problems. For those who suffer from gum ailments and external fungus, this herb can be helpful.
Leaf of Life (Bryophyllum Pinnatum)
A succulent plant used in folk medicine, it is a good remedy for hypertension, bronchial problems, colds, bruises, boils, ulcers, insect bites, ear-aches, sprains, swelling, arthritis, tay-tay worm, and cleans bladder. The tea relieves colds, asthma and shortness of breath.