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The Ultimate Guide to Herbal Supplements

This comprehensive guide to herbal supplements summarizes the healthiest choices for a wide variety of ages and ailments.

| January / February 2018

  • Supplements complement a well-rounded diet to help provide optimal nutrition and vitality.
    Photo by GettyImages/Elenathewise
  • Supplements offer the opportunity to consume uncommon herbs and spices that are proven to have healthful benefits.
    Photo by Adobe Stock/akulamatiau
  • Some herbal supplements can be safely added to a regular wellness routine to boost general health, longevity and comfort.
    Photo by GettyImages/pkanchana
  • Our daily diets should be our first source for nutrients; supplements should be second.
    Photo by GettyImages/Elenathewise
  • Many believe digestion is the key to wellness; many herbs can help!
    Photo by Adobe Stock/kerdkanno
  • Apart from being delicious, peppermint is an effective antispasmodic and anti-nausea herb.
    Photo by GettyImages/wmaster890
  • The three fruits that make up triphala work together as a laxative, bowel tonic and detoxifer.
    Photo by GettyImages/bdspn
  • Fennel helps soothe the digestive tract and relieve bloating.
    Photo by GettyImages/Sidekick
  • Rhodiola is particularly useful for treating symptoms of stress-related fatigue.
    Photo by GettyImages/Cyrustr
  • An Ayurvedic herb, ashwagandha enhances general health and well-being.
    Photo by Adobe Stock/Prashant ZI
  • Eleuthero helps protect the body from both internal and external stressors.
    Photo by GettyImages/juhajarvinen
  • With the help of a doctor or herbalist, choose supplements that actively benefit you to reap the most health rewards.
    Photo by GettyImages/JPC-PROD
  • Hawthorn is good for any heart, but is especially recommended for men.
    Photo by GettyImages/Elet1
  • Though thought of as a sexual stimulant, maca nourishes a body's overall health, vigor and stamina.
    Photo by GettyImages/vainillaychile
  • A calming herb for all, chamomile is gentle enough to be used to soothe children.
    Photo by GettyImages/PK-Photos
  • Caution is advised when choosing what children ingest, but some herbs have been proven outstandingly safe and beneficial for them.
    Photo by GettyImages/Paul Bradbury
  • Common in the kitchen, cinnamon can be used to ease cramping and upset stomachs in children.
    Photo by GettyImages/ChamilleWhite
  • Turmeric has a host of health benefits that span from anti-aging and heart health to potential anticancer abilities.
    Photo by GettyImages/pinkomelet
  • Not everyone will experience the same ailments, but everyone can benefit from knowing basic herbal treatments.
    Photo by GettyImages/123object
  • Gentle marshmallow root can ease children's sore throats.
    Photo by GettyImages/LianeM
  • Skullcap's sedative properties include cooling down anxious emotions without affecting mental clarity.
    Photo by Adobe Stock/apple1
  • In Ayurveda, gotu kola is considered a rejuvenating tonic.
    Photo by GettyImages/obewon
  • A grounding herb, valerian root calms fear, worry and performance anxiety.
    Photo by GettyImages/Gregory_DUBUS
  • Soothing and mild motherwort calms the heart, easing tension and anxiety.
    Photo by GettyImages/Mantonature
  • The Ayurvedic herb arjuna is believed to be a panacea for the heart.
    Photo by GettyImages/ziprashantzi
  • Lovely hibiscus may be powerful enough to rival common hypertension medication.
    Photo by GettyImages/PongMoji
  • Try to incorporate food and lifestyle changes into your routine to increase your vitamin intake.
    Photo by GettyImages/PeopleImages

A well-rounded diet that includes leafy greens, whole grains and organic protein should provide your body with most of the nutrients it needs to survive and thrive. Supplements do what their name implies; they supplement and complement daily meals to help provide optimal nutrition and vitality during all stages of life. Supplements also offer the opportunity to consume uncommon herbs and spices that have healthful benefits, but that we may not stumble across in our day-to-day lives, such as ashwagandha and eleuthero. They also allow consumers to ingest larger doses of common culinary ingredients, including garlic and turmeric, than what we would typically encounter in a traditional meal.

The following guide offers a comprehensive list of recommended supplements for common health complaints, such as stress, indigestion and inflammation, as well as those best-suited for women, men, children and seniors. All of the following supplements benefit the body in specific ways, and all contribute to general health and longevity.

As with any new addition to a health-care routine, always consult a doctor before taking a regular supplement, especially if you have existing health conditions, are nursing or pregnant. Don’t mix herbal supplements with prescription pharmaceuticals without the advice of a medical professional. These supplements offer safe and natural benefits to our well-being, but only when used correctly.

Herbs for All

A few health conditions are experienced by nearly everyone at one time or another: inflammation, digestive discomfort and stress. Due to this, some herbal supplements can be safely added to a regular wellness routine to boost general health, longevity and comfort.

Herbs for Anti-inflammatory Support

Inflammation is an essential component in the body’s ability to stay healthy; the inflammatory response begins the process of healing after an injury. However, our bodies can get stuck in unnecessary and unhealthy inflammatory responses, and this chronic inflammation stresses and injures cells. As a result, inflammation can trigger anything from joint pain and skin problems to heart disease and perhaps even cancer.

Boswellia (Boswellia serrata). Sometimes called Indian frankincense, this Ayurvedic herb contains boswellic acids, which have been found to inhibit the synthesis of pro-inflammatory enzymes in vitro. This trait makes boswellia useful in treating such disorders as arthritis, tendinitis and Crohn’s disease.

Sam Conway
4/29/2019 10:59:38 AM

can Swanson vitamins be ok?

12/29/2017 10:35:43 AM

What about Puritan Pride vitamins?

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