Herbs and Minerals are the major ingredients of ayurvedic medicines but some of the major herbs used in the preparation of these medicines are:
Especially helpful for anxiety, stress, and adrenal dysfunction, ashwagandha can be an alternative to antianxiety and antidepressant medications. It lowers inflated levels of the stress hormone cortisol, and enhances natural levels of testosterone and DHEA, hormones that help maintain overall strength and muscle mass. It also calms harmful levels of inflammation.
Also called Terminalia arjuna , this herb relieves angina, the chest pain related to heart disease, by relaxing and widening blood vessels in a similar way to nitroglycerin. It also strengthens blood vessels and makes them more elastic, and enhances collagen levels. Arjuna can be taken to treat or lower the risk of developing heart disease.
Best known as a powerful natural remedy for chronic inflammation, curcumin (an extract of turmeric) relieves arthritis and other pain, cleans arteries, relieves depression, helps with indigestion, and may relieve symptoms of PMS and many inflammatory conditions, such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. It’s also used to reduce cancer risk and enhance cancer treatment.
A classic Ayurvedic combination of three Indian herbs (haritaki, bahera, and amla, sometimes spelled slightly differently), triphala is used to enhance digestion and regularity, and helps good bacteria to flourish in the gut.
One of the herbs in triphala, amla is also used on its own for rejuvenation, especially in cases of anemia or a weak immune system. It can be helpful for frequent colds or flu, ongoing cough, bronchitis, or upper-respiratory tract infections. Amla is also used in conjunction with chemotherapy or radiation treatment for cancer.
Also known as Indian frankincense, boswellia is an anti-inflammatory herb used to relieve pain and other symptoms of arthritis and other “-itis” conditions, as well as for asthma, hay fever, sore throat, menstrual cramps, stomach pain, and even pimples. It can be combined with other Ayurvedic herbs.
Although it can be used by both men and women to strengthen the reproductive system, shatavari is best known as a female tonic that balances hormones. The herb enhances fertility, reduces vaginal dryness when menopausal symptoms begin and after menopause, and reduces hot flashes.
As a tea, holy basil is a traditional Indian remedy for colds and flu, and is also used to relieve other respiratory infections, asthma, and seasonal allergies, and to counteract stress and anxiety. The herb is often found in combination herbal formulas.
A remedy for fungal, bacterial, and viral infections, neem is especially useful in preventing and treating shingles and the associated nerve pain, as well as ringworm. It should always be taken with food, as it lowers blood sugar, and can drive levels too low if taken on an empty stomach.
Less common in the United States than the other herbs, rauwolfia is a natural remedy for high blood pressure. Stiff or hardened blood vessels make blood pressure rise, and rauwolfia works by making blood vessel walls more elastic, thereby restoring healthy blood flow and pressure.
A go-to herbal remedy for elevated blood sugar and diabetes, gymnema sylvestre can also treat polycystic ovary syndrome. It reduces insulin resistance and improves metabolism of sugar and starch, and can help with weight loss.