Do It Your self Herbal Medicine


ADD (attention deficit disorder): A condition characterized by inattentiveness, often associated with, but not limited to, children.

ADHD (attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder): A chronic condition that begins in childhood and often extends into adulthood with symptoms of hyperactivity, impulsive behavior, and difficulty sustaining attention.

analgesic: A substance or compound that eases or stops pain.

antibacterial: A substance or compound that kills, eases, or stops the growth of bacteria.

antifungal: A substance or compound that eases or stops the growth of fungi.

antimicrobial: An agent that kills microorganisms or inhibits their growth.

antioxidants: Molecules found in plants, herbs, and food, like vitamins, that remove free radicals and other harmful oxidizing agents from your body.

antiseptic: A substance or compound that eases or stops the growth of infections.

antispasmodic: A substance or compound that stops spasms.

antiviral: A substance or compound that eases or stops the proliferation of viruses.

aromatherapy: A type of herbal medicine that uses essential oils and other therapeutic aromas to improve physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing.

astringent: A substance or compound that causes a constriction or contraction. In the case of this book, some herbs have an astringent effect on the pores of the skin.

Ayurveda: In Sanskrit, this term means “life knowledge.” As a practice, it is a traditional Hindu system of alternative medicine.

botanical: A preparation made from part of a plant, as from roots, leaves, bark, or berries.

carotenoids: A class of naturally occurring pigments synthesized by algae, plants, and photosynthetic bacteria.

carrier oil: An oil that is used to dilute essential oils before they are applied to the skin.

compress: A piece of cloth that is soaked in the herbs and then applied to a particular part of the body.

corticosteroids: A class of chemicals that are produced in the adrenal cortex of vertebrates and tend to affect responses to stress and threats to the immune system and play a role in inflammation regulation.

decoction: A tea made by boiling the parts of a plant, like bark, roots, stems, and other woodsy components, in water to be used therapeutically. See also infusion.

diaphoretic: Pertaining to perspiration.

essential oil: Nutrient-dense oils extracted from parts of a plant, like stems, leaves, flowers, and fruits, which give off a specific healing aroma.

ethanol: Another name for alcohol. Often used to make tinctures.

exfoliant: An agent designed to slough off dead, dry cells from the skin.

expectorant: A substance or compound that expels mucous.

extract: A solution that contains the highly-concentrated active ingredient of a substance.

flavonoids: Plant pigments that contain numerous antioxidants.

gingko biloba: A tree whose leaves improve blood flow to the brain and works as an antioxidant.

Hippocrates: An ancient Greek physician considered to be the father of Western medicine.

infusion: A tea made by pouring boiling water over delicate parts of the plant, like fruits, leaves, dried flowers, or berries so the liquid steeps and the nutrients are imparted into the tea. See also decoction.

mask: A skin treatment used for detoxing, deep cleaning, and purifying skin head to toe.

mucilage: The thick, sticky substance inside plants that facilitates food and water storage and seed germination, plus houses many nutrients and can be used in preparations.

naturopath: A licensed practitioner of therapy that relies on natural remedies to treat illness.

nutrient: A substance that provides nourishment and is necessary for growth and sustaining life.

pH level: A chemical scale from 0–14 that determines the amounts of acid and alkalinity (pH greater than 7) of a substance.

poultice: A moist blend of organic materials designed to be placed on a piece of cloth and then applied to wounds and inflammation to stop pain, swelling, and soreness.

prebiotic: A nondigestible ingredient of food that promotes the growth of beneficial microorganisms in the intestines.

probiotic: A substance that promotes the growth of beneficial microorganisms.

rosacea: A skin condition characterized by facial redness, dilated blood vessels, bumps, and pustules.

salve: Ointments designed to heal, protect, or soothe the skin.

serum: A concentrated product used in cosmetology that contains geranium as a common ingredient.

tannin: A constituent found in plants that can be used for skin care, as well as other treatments.

TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine): An ancient medical practice that incorporates forms of herbal medicine, acupuncture, massage, exercise, and dietary therapy.

tincture: An herbal medicine created by combining plants with a solvent such as alcohol, vinegar, or glycerine. When applied topically and not orally, it is known as a liniment.

UVA (ultraviolet A)/UVB (ultraviolet B): Two types of harmful rays that come from sunlight. Raspberry provides protection from these effects.