The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that there are more than 50,000 known medicinal plants used by people around the world to boost their wellness, strengthen their immune systems, prevent diseases, and stay healthy. A more recent study looking specifically at flowering medicinal plants estimates that this number may be far higher — upwards of 80,000 flowering plants may have potent health effects. Whatever the exact number, many of these medicinal plants and wild herbs are ready to be harvested right now during the fall season. Celebrate the fall season by helping yourself to Mother Nature’s medicine cupboard in your backyard or a nearby wooded area.
3 Medicinal Plants to Pick This Fall
1. Dandelion Roots
You might think of dandelion as a spring or summer plant, but many natural health practitioners harvest the roots of this healthy weed in the fall. In the fall, the nutritional content of the dandelion root changes significantly, with sugar levels (i.e., fructose) dropping while inulin levels (a type of healthy fiber) skyrocket.
Dandelion roots are:
- Beneficial for your gut health, because inulin has been found to support strong gut bacteria
- High in polyphenols, a type of powerful antioxidant that may reduce oxidative stress, protect your cells from damage, enhance your immune system and even reduce the risks of numerous diseases
- Great for potentially reducing your cholesterol levels, as demonstrated in animal studies
- High in compounds that may reduce your risks of cancer
2. Stinging Nettle
“You may harvest nettles from the time the new leaves emerge from the ground until late fall after the flowers have gone to seed but before the rains begin to rot the stems (while they still maintain their green color and have leaves attached),” explains the Wolf School of Natural Science. Armed with gloves and scissors, harvest the vibrant green leaves and hang them in the air to dry.
This medicinal plant, and the resulting stinging nettle tea, hold many benefits:
- It’s high in vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, vitamin K, and magnesium
- It’s a rich source of disease-fighting polyphenols and immune system-enhancing carotenoids
- It may reduce inflammation, which lends itself to therapeutic treatments for inflammation-related health concerns (for example, arthritis and joint pain)
- It may help to balance your blood sugar
Awaken your senses with this medicinal plant, commonly used in recipes and teas. Before the plant dies back in the winter, pick its leaves and dry them for Christmas recipes and soothing teas all winter long.
As a medicinal plant, mint may:
- Improve irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Improve your digestion and calm an upset stomach
- Strengthen your cognitive health and enhance your memory
- Reduce the symptoms of the common cold, which is perfect for the fall cold and flu season
Together, these three medicinal plants are perfect examples of the wellness- and immunity-enhancing herbs that nature has to offer this autumn. If you’re turning to nature for immune support, don’t forget the immunity gift that nature has placed within you: thymic proteins! Learn more about thymic proteins and BioPro-Plus 500 today.