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Herb tea

by Dianna Leon

Scientific name Echites peltatus Vell. , the herb known as João-da-costa is native to Brazil – state of Minas Gerais and extension between Rio de Janeiro and Rio Grande do Sul –, Argentina and Paraguay. The vine has fickle branches and is also known as vine-benção, vine-capador, vine-mucuna, vine-de-paina, yerba santa and paina de feathers.

The plant of the Apocynaceae family has a long stem and opposite leaves that are rounded at the base, pelted, lactescent and fleshy, in addition to flowers that present a yellow-sulfur color. The herb João-da-costa can be found to buy in natural food and herbal medicine stores.

It is important, however, that you always consult a doctor before starting a treatment with any medication, even if it is natural, as there are interactions and adverse reactions that must be analyzed by a specialist before consumption.

Herb benefits and properties

The herb has anti-inflammatory and anti-ulcerogenic properties and can be used to treat arthritis, cramps, discharge, menstrual pain, orchitis, inflammation of the urogenital system, ovarian inflammation, rheumatism and chronic ulcer. The use of leaves and stems, in addition to treating all the diseases mentioned above, can also be done to increase fertility in women. In addition, it can be used not only for the treatment of pain and discomfort related to Premenstrual Tension, but also for the same problems related to the menopause period.

How to prepare tea?

João-da-costa tea can be prepared with the proportion of two tablespoons of the herb for each liter of water. Put the water in a container and heat it. Add the herb and cook until it comes to a boil. Then turn off and cover, letting the solution sit in a sweltering period of approximately ten minutes. After this time, strain and consume. The recommended dose is two to three cups a day.

Contraindications and precautions for use

This natural drug is contraindicated for pregnant patients, women who are breastfeeding their babies – as any substances ingested are absorbed and transmitted to the baby through the milk – and those under 18 years of age. The plant, when used incorrectly, is toxic and, therefore, should only be used under medical supervision. In addition, the plant can have drug interactions, so always inform your doctor about all the drugs you are currently using.

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