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Top 10 Herbal Medicines Approved by the DOH

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THESE ARE the ten (10) medicinal plants that the Department of Health (DOH) through its "Traditional Health Program" have endorsed. All these herbs have been thoroughly tested and have been clinically proven to have medicinal value in the relief and treatment of various aliments:

  1. Akapulko (Cassia alata) - also known as "bayabas-bayabasan" and "ringworm bush" is used to treat ringworms and skin fungal infections.

  2. Ampalaya (Momordica charantia) - known as "bitter gourd" or "bitter melon" is mostly known as a treatment for diabetes (for the non-insulin dependent patients).

  3. Bawang (Allium sativum) - popularly known as "garlic", it mainly reduces cholesterol in the blood and, hence, helps control blood pressure.

  4. Bayabas (Psidium guajava) - "guava" is used as an antiseptic, to disinfect wounds; also used as a mouth wash to treat tooth decay and gum infection.

  5. Lagundi (Vitex negundo) - known ias the "5-leaved chaste tree" is mainly used for the relief of coughs and asthma.

  6. Niyog-niyogan (Quisqualis indica L.) - is a vine known as "Chinese honey suckle". It is effective in the elimination of Ascaris and Trichina intestinal worms. Only the dried matured seeds are medicinal: crack and ingest the dried seeds two hours after eating (5 to 7 seeds for children & 8 to 10 seeds for adults). If one dose does not eliminate the worms, wait a week before repeating the dose.

  7. Pansit-Pansitan (Peperomia pellucida) - It is effective in fighting arthritis and gout. The leaves can be eaten fresh (about a cupful) as salad or like tea. For the decoction, boil a cup of clean chopped leaves in 2 cups of water. Boil for 15 to 20 minutes. Strain, let cool and drink a cup after meals (3 times day).

  8. Sambong (Blumea balsamifera) - English name: Blumea camphora. A diuretic that helps in the excretion of urinary stones. It can also be used as an edema.

  9. Tsaang Gubat (Ehretia microphylla Lam.) - Prepared like tea, this herbal medicine is effective in treating intestinal motility and also used as a mouth wash since the leaves of this shrub has high fluoride content.

  10. Yerba Buena (Clinopodium douglasii) - commonly known as Peppermint, this vine is used as an analgesic to relive body aches and pain. It can be taken internally as a decoction or externally by pounding the leaves and applied directly on the afflicted area.

Source: Adapted from Philippine Herbal Medicine "Ten (10) Herbal Medicines in the Philippines Approved by the Department of Health (DOH)". http://www.philippineherbalmedicine.org/doh_herbs.htm

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