Tribulus terrestris


Tuscu, S. (2008). Çocuk İstiyorum Tüp Bebek. Retrieved from:

Botanical Name: Tribulus terrestris
Common name: Tribulus, Gokshur (Sanskrit), Gokharu (Hindi), Puncture vine (Chhatre, Nesari, Somani, Kanchan & Sathaye, 2014).
Family: Zygophyllaceae (Chhatre et al., 2014).
Parts used: Dried fruit (Chhatre et al., 2014).

Quality: In Ayurvedia medicine Tribulus is describes as madhura (sweet), gura (heavy to digest), brumhema (nourishing) and Vatanut (pacifies vata dhsa).

Constituents: Saponins (incl. furostanol, spirostanol and sarsasapogenin), flavonoids, glycosides (incl. spirostanol glycosides) and alkaloids (Chhatre et al., 2014).



  • Diuretic
  • Aphrodisiac
  • Antiurolithic
  • Immunomodulatory
  • Cardiotonic
  • Hepatoprotective
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Analgesic
  • Anti-spasmodic
  • Anti-cancer
  • Anti-bacterial
  • Anthelmintic

(Chhatre et al., 2014).



  • Coronary Artery Disease (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Infertility (men) (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Infertility (women) (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Exercise performance enhancement (Natural Standard, 2014)

In Auyrvedic medicine, the herb is indicated in the genitourinary tract to clear urinary stones, as a urinary disinfectant and for impotence (Chhatre et al., 2014)

Accoring to Chhatre, in TCM the herb is used to “restore depressed liver, treat feeling of fullness in chest, mastitis, flatulence, acute conjunctivitis, headache and vitiligo” (2014).



  • Individuals with menstrual disorders as it may cause menorrhagia (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia as it may increase prostate volume (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Hypoglycemia/diabetes as it may decrease blood sugar levels (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Pregnancy due to traditional use as abortifacent (Natural Standard, 2014)


Contraindications: Know allergy (Natural Standard, 2014)



  • Beta-blockers and calcium channel blockers (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Digoxin due to evidence of positive ionotropic activity (Natural Standard, 2014)

Chamaelirium luteum


Discover Life. (n.d.). Index of /IM/I_DL/0003/mx. Retrieved from:

Botanical Name: Chamaelirium luteum
Common name: False Unicorn Root, Helonias root (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
Family: Melanthiaceae
Parts used: root (Bone, 2003, p. 204)

History/Folklore: The herb has been used by the Eclectics and Native Americans as a tonic for the female reproductive system (Bone, 2003, p. 204). Today the herb is endangered (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 384).

Constituents: Steroidal saponins incl. chamaelitin (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)


  • Uterine tonic (Bone, 2003, p. 204; Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)
  • Ovarian tonic (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Estrogen modulating (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Diuretic (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)
  • Anthelmintic (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)
  • Emetic (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)
  • Emmenagogue (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)

Steroidal saponins act by binding with estrogen receptors of the hypothalamus (Bone, 2003, p. 205).



  • Amenorrhea (Bone, 2003, p. 204; Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)
  • Dysmenorrhea (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Ovarian pain (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Leukorrhea (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Prolapse (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Atony of reproductive organs (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Threatened miscarriage (Bone, 2003, p. 204; Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)
  • Morning sickness (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Menopause symptoms (notably hot flushes) (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Infertility (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Sexual lassitude (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Morning sickness (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)

Hoffmann suggests that this herb is a superior tonic or the reproductive system and may be indicated for both men and women (1990, p. 199).


Dosage & Preparation:

  • Liquid extract (1:2): 2-6ml/day or 15-40mL/week (Bone, 2003, p. 204)
  • Decoction: 1-2tsp/1 cup water/tds (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 199)

Contraindications: None known (Bone, 2003, p. 204)

Interactions: None known (Bone, 2003, p. 204)

Euphorbia hirta

euphorbiahirta copy

Botanical Name: Euphorbia hirta
Common name: Dudeli (Hindi), Asthma herb (English) (Kumar et al., 2010)
Family: Euphorbiaceae (Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1).
Parts used: Leaf, stem (Kumar et al., 2010)


  • Alkanes
  • Triterpenes
  • Phytosterols
  • Tannins
  • Polyphenols
  • Falonoids

(Kumar et al., 2010)



  • Anti-inflammatory (Ahmad, Khan, Bani, Kaul, Sultan, Ali, Satti, Bakheet, Attia, Zoheir & Abd-Allah, 2013, Abstract; Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1; Kumar et al., 2010)
  • Antibacterial, antifungal (Kumar et al., 2010; Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1)
  • Anticancer (Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1; Kumar et al., 2010)
  • Antithelmintic (Kumar et al., 2010; Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1)
  • Antioxidant (Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1)
  • Antipyretic (Ahmad et al., 2013, Abstract; Kumar et al., 2010)
  • Antispasmodic (Kumar et al., 2010)
  • Anxiolytic (Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1; Kumar et al., 2010)
  • Diuretic (Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1)
  • Hypotensive (Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1; Kumar et al., 2010)
  • Immunosepressor (Ahmad et al., 2013, Abstract)


History and Traditional Use

There are over 1600 species in the Euphorbia genus, which is characterised by the excretion of a white milky latex which is often toxic (Kumar et al., 2010). Euphorbia hirta is a common weed used in Auyrvedic medicine, traditional medicine in Africa, Australia and Malaysia (Ahmad, et al., 2013, Abstract; Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1; Kumar et al., 2010).

In Ayurvedic medicin Euphorbia hirta is used to treat female disorders, respiratory ailments, worm infestations in children, jaundice, gonorrhoea, digestive problems and tumours Kumar et al., 2010

In traditional Malay medicine Euphorbia hirta is used for gastrointestinal disorders and in the respiratory system (Perumal & Mahmud, 2013, p. 1).




  • Asthma
  • Bronchitis
  • Hay fever


  • Diarrhoea
  • Dysentery and
  • Parasites


  • Has a sedative effect of urinary tract



Dried Herb Decoction: often used for skin disease

Fresh Herb Decoction: Used as a gargle for thrush

A leaf poultice is used to treat swelling and boils

(Kumar et al., 2010).


Cautions & Contradictions

Has shown to lower sperm count in studies and therefore may reduce fertility (Kumar et al., 2010).


Ahmad, S. F., Khan, B., Bani, S., Kaul, A., Sultan, P., Ali, S. A., Satti, N. K., Bakheet, S. A., Attia, S. M., Zoheir, K. M., & Abd-Allah, A. R. (2013). Immunosuppressive effects of Euphorbia hirta in experimental animals.Inflammopharmacology, 21(2), 161-8. DOI: 10.1007/s10787-012-0144-6

Ahmad, S. F., Attia, S. M., Bakheet, S. A., Ashour, A. E., Zoheir, K. M., & Abd-Allah, A. R. (2014). Anti-inflammatory effect of Euphorbia hirta in an adjuvant-induced arthritic murine model. Inflammopharmacology, 43(3), 197-211. DOI: 10.3109/08820139.2013.857350

Kumar, S., Malhotra, R., & Kumar, D. (2010). Euphorbia hirta: Its chemistry, traditional and medicinal uses, and pharmacological activities. Pharmacognosy Reviews, 4(7), 58-61. doi:  10.4103/0973-7847.65327

Perumal, S., & Mahmud, R. (2013). Chemical analysis, inhibition of biofilm formation and biofilm eradication potential of Euphorbia hirta L. against clinical isolates and standard strains. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 13: 346 doi:10.1186/1472-6882-13-346

Image: Pati, K. (2010). ASTHMA WEED, Euphorbia hirta. Retrieved from:

Gentiana lutea


Image I


Image II


Botanical name: Gentiana lutea

Common name: Gentian (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 553)

Family: Gentianacae (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 553)

Part used: Dried rhizome and Root (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 553)


Active constituents

Iridoids: marogentin,genitopicroside and swertiamarin

Xanthones: gentisein, gentisin and isogentisin

Alkaloids: mainly gentianine and gentialutine

Phenolic acids: including gentisic, caffeic, protocatechuic, syringic and sinapic acids

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 553)



  • Analgesic
  • Anthelmintic
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antifungal
  • Antimicrobial
  • Antioxidant
  • Antiseptic
  • Appetite stimulant
  • Bitter tonic
  • Cholagogue
  • Digestive tonic
  • Emmenagogue
  • Muscle relaxant
  • Tonic

(Bryan, Costa, Iovin, Issac, Rapp, Rusie, Ulbricht, Varghese, Weissner, Windsor & Zhou, 2014, pp. 1-2)


Indications (traditional)

Native to the mountains of southern and central Europe, Gentiana lutea has been used medicinally for hundreds of years as a bitter tonic and digestive system stimulant (Bryan et al., 2014, pp. 1-2).

Historical and traditional uses include:

  • Amenorrhea
  • Anemia
  • Anorexia
  • Antidote to poisons
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea
  • Digestive disorders
  • Dyspepsia
  • Eczema
  • Exhaustion
  • Fever
  • Hepatic disease
  • Indigestion
  • Jaundice
  • Malaria
  • Morning sickness
  • Sore throat
  • Skin ulcers
  • Urinary Tract Infection
  • Vomiting

(Bryan et al., 2014, pp. 1-2)


Indications (contemporary)

Amarogentin, one of the most bitter substances known, stimulates gustorary taste buds, increasing the secretion of saliva, gastric juice and bile (Bryan et al., 2014, p. 1)

C grade evidence supports the herbs use in gastrointestinal disorders and the ability for it to act as a silalagogue (Bryan et al., 2014, p. 1).


Preparation & Dosage

Tincture: 2-4mL/tds (1:5 in 40%)

Decoction: 1-2tsp/1 cup water/tds

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 553)



May not be well tolerated in individuals with high blood pressure (Bryan et al., 2014, p. 4).

Caution to be taken with individuals presenting gastric abnormalities, as secondary sources show incidence of gastric irritation, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea (Bryan et al., 2014, p. 4).

May inhibit agents of antidepressants or monoamine oxidase inhibitors (Bryan et al., 2014, p. 4)



Known allergy (Bryan et al., 2014, p. 3).



Often combined with other digestives such as Ginger and Cardamon (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 202)



Bryan, J. K., Costa, D., Iovin, R., Issac, R., Rapp, C., Rusie, E., Ulbricht, C., Varghese, M., Weissner, W., Windsor, R., & Zhou, S. (2014). Gentian (Gentiana lutea). Natural Standard Professional Monograph. Retrieved from:

Hoffmann, D. (2003). Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine. Rochester Vermont: Healing Arts Press.

Hoffmann, D. (1990). Holistic Herbal. London: Thorsons

Image I: Köhler, F. (1897) Köhler’s Medizinal-Pflanzen. Retrieved from:

Image II: Singh, M. (2006). GENTIANA LUTEA: Yellow Gentian. Retrieved from:

Artemisia absinthium


Botanical name: Artemisia absinthium

Common name: Wormwood (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 530)

Family: Asteraceae (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 530)

Part used: Leaf & flowering top (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 530)


Active constituents

  • Volatile oil: including a- and b-thujone
  • Sesquiterpene lactones: absinthin, artemetin, matricin, isoabsinthin and artemolin
  • Acetylenes
  • Flavonoids
  • Phenolic acids
  • Ligans: diayangmbin and epiyangambin

(Hoffmann, 2003, p. 530)



  • Analgesic
  • Anthelminthic
  • Anti inflammatory
  • Antiseptic
  • Antispasmodic
  • Antitumor
  • Carminative
  • Cholagogue
  • Diuretic
  • Emmenagogue
  • Hypnotic
  • Stimulant
  • Tonic

(Armstrong et al., 2014)


Indications (traditional)

Artemisia absinthium has a long history of use in Chinese Medicine, using the leaves and flowers of the plant (known as qinghaosu) in the preparation of teas (Armstrong et al., 2014).


Historical and theoretical indications include:

  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Antiatherogenic
  • Back pain
  • Bloating
  • Convulsions
  • Depression
  • Dropsy
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Herpes
  • Insect and spider bites
  • Jaundice
  • Labor pains
  • Parasitic worm infections
  • Stomach ailments

(Armstrong et al., 2014, p. 2).


Indications (contemporary)

C grade evidence suggests the herb’s use in the case of Crohn’s disease and Malaria (Armstrong et al., 2014, p. 2).

Insufficient available evidence suggests that Artemisia absinthium should be avoided during pregnancy and in children under the age of 18 (Armstrong et al., 2014, pp. 4, 6).

The World Health Organisation strongly discourage the use of the herb as sole treatment for Malaria, due to the potential for malarial parasite to develop resistance to it (Armstrong et al., 2014, p. 2).


Preparation & Dosage

The herb is traditionally prepared in fluid extract, pills, tinctures and capsules.

Infusion: 1-2 tsp (dried herb) infused for 10-15min in 1 cup of boiling water/tds.

Tinctures: 1-4mL tds



  • Not listed in the U.S FDA Generally Recognised As Safe list and is not recommended for oral administration (Armstrong et al., 2014, p. 2).
  • There have been adverse reactions recorded with Artemisia absinthium in individuals with cardiovascular conditions, gastrointestinal disorders, musculoskeletal disorders, neurological conditions and renal dysfunction (Armstrong et al., 2014, p. 2).



Known allergy (Armstong et al., 2013)



Artemisia absinthium has reported to have a negative interaction with alcohol, antiangiogenic drugs and antiarrhythmic agents (Armstrong et al., 2014, p. 6).



Armstrong, E., Conquer, J., Costa, D., Isaac, R., Lynch, M., McCarthy, M., Nguyen, S., Rusie, E., Grimes Serrano, J., Shaffer, M., Smith, M., Woods, J., & Zhou, S. (2014). Wormwood (Artemisia absinthium). Natural Standard Monograph. Retrieved from:

Hoffmann, D. (2003). Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine. Rochester Vermont: Healing Arts Press.

Image: Grieve, M. (1995). Wormwoods. Retrieved from: