The Many Uses Of Common Medicinal Plants

common medicinal plants

It is interesting to learn that the first medicinal plant was found more than two thousand years ago in Egypt. Since then many plants have been used for medicinal purposes throughout the world. In our modern society, however, most plants are used for decoration and fragrances in aromatherapy, food, medicine, cosmetics and petrochemicals.

Plants Used In The Treatment Of Human Ailments

A close up of a flower

A number of the most common plants used in the treatment of human ailments include the peony (Piper longum), ginseng (ginseng) and chaste berry (trials vulgaris). These three plants are very well known for their medicinal uses and have been used in China, Japan, Tibet, Nepal, India, Tibet and Norway. Ginseng and chaste berry are most commonly used as tonic herbs and are often prescribed by Ayurvedic doctors. Chinese herbal medicines, such as those of pine flower and wolfberry are also used for medicinal purposes.


A close up of a flower

The peony is a shrub or vine that grows to about six to ten feet tall. As a medicinal plant it is most famous for its yellow flowers. Peony roots can be chewed, but are best used in their extract form. This root is used to treat bladder infections, kidney stones and inflammation. Chinese herbal medicines, such as wolfberry and tea made from pine flower, are very popular for treating bladder and kidney infections and are available in tablet form.


Also known as Ginkgo biloba, ginger has become very popular in Europe and the United States for its medicinal and culinary purposes. It can be used in cooking and as a spice. As a tea it can be used in teas that have medicinal benefits, such as for circulatory ailments and to reduce anxiety and tension. As a spice it can be used in soups and sauces.


Also called Cinnamomum verum, cinnamon has been used in Chinese medicine since the Analects of the Five Elements, written by the Han Dynasty’s Emperor Kangxi. It is believed to be useful for reducing fever, respiratory infections, to strengthen the bones and increase the energy of the digestive organs. In tea it is often added to the white tea, created from Oolong and Long Beans. It can also be added to cakes and cookies.


Also know as Momordica charantia, damiana is native to Central America and was used by Native Americans for a variety of medicinal purposes including inducing labor. This plant contains a compound that has stimulants, which may help to induce labor. It is also believed to ease stomach upset and nausea and to lower blood pressure.


A hardy plant that prefers full sun, hops is an excellent choice for use in a variety of culinary recipes. It is one of the most widely used herbs in American cuisine; in fact, it is said that after tasting a beer made with hops, you will never want to taste another beer. The leaves are harvested and dried, then ground up into a tea. It can be used in any number of recipes. It is also available in dried extract.

Last Words

As you can see, there are many uses for these common medicinal plants. While they are considered by many to be essential, it is not likely that you will develop any adverse side effects from them. They do, however, have a strong aromatic scent and should be kept away from children and animals. If you have an allergy to the plant, or if you are having an allergic reaction, stop using it and contact your doctor. They will probably be able to help you find a more appropriate alternative.

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