In ancient days, women largely relied on natural products like herbal pastes and powders for their health and beauty care. Today, women have gone back to the age old traditions, and prefer home remedies and natural products, to fancy brands and synthetic chemical-based products. This is because they have noticed that herbal formulations can tackle several chronic conditions, and are also quite affordable. Particularly, in India, there is rich flora and the treasure trove of Ayurveda that comes to their rescue.
Listed here, are five effective herbs that help in overall well-being of women.
Guduchi (Scientific name: Tinospora Cordifolia), commonly known as Giloy, is found in abundance in India, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. Being rich in antioxidants, they have anti-ageing properties too. The best way to consume this is to use a powder made from stem of the Guduchi herb. The powder can be mixed in water and honey, and consumed.
Guduchi helps people with diabetes, although it should be taken only under medical supervision. In Ayurveda, the herb is used for treatment of various infections, fevers, urinary tract disorders, digestive disorders, and water-borne diseases like jaundice.
The extract of the herb is a good tonic for liver, improves vision, reduces stress, treats cough and cold, and cures stomach disorders. It also increases platelet count, and is therefore excellent in treating cases of dengue too. For women particularly, it helps conditions like PCOS (Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome).
Wheatgrass is rich in vitamins A, B-complex, C, E, K and helps improve immunity. It is noticed that anaemia is more common in women than in men, and wheatgrass can help in cases of iron deficiency. Due to the presence of chlorophyll in large quantities, Wheatgrass helps in improving haemoglobin levels in the body. Wheatgrass is also rich in proteins and amino acids.
Wheatgrass can be consumed as fresh juice, or taken in powdered form. But, wheatgrass may cause nausea, appetite loss and constipation in some people. Therefore, pregnant and lactating women are advised to consult their gynaecologist before consuming wheatgrass.
Drumstick leaves (muringa as it is popularly called) is a nutrient-rich herb, rich in vitamin C and beta carotene. It has anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, cholesterol lowering properties, and is a natural energy booster. It can be added to regular food when cooking, or infused as tea. Drumstick leaves helps improve haemoglobin levels, increases milk production in lactating mothers, and is good for bone health.
Another powerful herb, that women should consider exploring, is Lodhra (Symplocos Racemosa Roxb). Being a good coagulant, it is used to stop bleeding. Therefore, it is used in treatment of bleeding disorders like bleeding wounds and gums. Lodhra is particularly beneficial in cases of uterus inflammation. It supports women during heavy menstrual discharge and leucorrhoea. It helps in maintaining health and strength of uterus during pregnancy, and also helps prevent miscarriage.
Lodhra is also beneficial as a beauty agent, and hence is used in face packs and anti-acne formulations, given its astringent properties. Lodhra helps in treatment of ulcers, eye infections, diarrhoea, dry eyes, and in conjunctivitis. Pregnant and lactating women should seek advice from their doctors before consuming Lodhra.
Shatavari (Asparagus Racemosus) is beneficial for women of reproductive age. Shatavari seals its place in Ayurveda as a powerful herb in formulations meant to strengthen the female reproductive system. It helps in hormonal balance, and helps women transition peacefully into menopause. Shatavari is also an immunity booster, and is excellent in boosting energy levels. Half to one teaspoon of Shatavari can be mixed with warm milk and add honey to taste for consumption. However, women with estrogen-sensitive tumours should avoid this herb. Also, people taking diuretic drugs should avoid Shatavari, as the herb is a powerful diuretic.