You may find it hard to believe, but plantain is not only a plant which pops up as a persistent weed in gardens, on lawns, and in driveway cracks, it is also one of most medicinally powerful plants that you probably aren’t taking advantage of to improve your overall health.
All those bushy green leaves and small, stalk-like buds contain unique nutritive potential that can help you deal with difficult menstrual cycles, clear up skin acne, and even reduce chronic arthritis pain.
Here are some of the reasons why plantain has been used as a medicine for hundreds of years:
1. Plantain works topically as a wound-healer
One of the most effective uses of plantain is as an astringent for bug bites and wounds. Simply chewing plantain leaf or crushing and grinding it makes an extremely effective poultice that can remove poisons from the skin and prevent scarring and infections.
“Because it draws toxins from the body with its astringent nature, plantain may be crushed (or chewed) and placed as a poultice directly over the site of bee stings, bug bites, acne, slivers, glass splinters, or rashes,” explains Life Advancer.
2. Plantain improves digestion
If you often have digestive problems due to genetically modified organisms (GMOs), food allergies, and antibiotics, we recommend you to start using plantain as soon as possible. Many recent studies have shown that the leaves and seeds of this amazing plant can reduce inflammation and help repair damage to the gut lining.
The seeds of plantain can be very helpful in maintaining a clean digestive tract because they act in a similar way as psyllium husk in removing toxins and creating firmer stools. Steeped plantain leaves can be turned into an extract that can be used as a gut remedy.
3. Plantain helps treat congestion, respiratory problems
Plantain is also an excellent expectorant due to its high amount of silica. This means that it can help you to get rid of congestion and mucus. In addition to this, plantain also is also useful in the treatment of coughs, colds, and other respiratory issues.
“Plantain acts as a gentle expectorant while soothing inflamed and sore membranes, making it ideal for coughs and mild bronchitis,” wrote David Hoffmann, FNIMH, AHG, in his popular book titled Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine.
4. Plantain helps treat hemorrhoids
The same astringent properties that we mentioned above also make plantain an effective remedy for the treatment of hemorrhoids. When the plantain is processed and turned into an ointment or lotion, it can be directly applied to hemorrhoids to stop the flow of blood.
“Plantain is one of Western herbalism’s primary topical healing agents, used as a lotion, ointment, compress, or poultice for cuts and bruises,” wrote Hoffmann in his book. “It may be applied topically for hemorrhoids and skin ulcerations.”
5. Plantain help in the treatment all blood diseases (and many other health problems)
In The American Materia Medica, Therapeutics and Pharmacognosy, the author, Dr. Finley Ellingwood, MD, wrote that plantain can be effective in the treatment of all blood diseases, mercury poisoning, many glandular diseases, female disorders, diarrheal conditions, and injuries, bites and rashes on the skin.
“Plantain is almost a panacea for the human body, treating everything from all menstrual difficulties, all digestive issues, to nearly all skin complaints, and even arthritis,” added Life Advancer.
If you want to learn more info, we strongly recommend you to read Dr. Ellingworth’s plantain entry that was published in his 1919 book: