5 Native American Herbal Remedies
Used by the Winnebago and Dakota tribes to stimulate the removal of phlegm in asthma. The rootstock was official in the U.S. Pharmacopoeia from 1820 to 1882 when it was used in respiratory and nervous disorders and in rheumatism and dropsy.
Introduced by Europeans. The Menominees smoked the pulverized, dried root for respiratory complaints while the Forest Potawatomis, the Mohegans, and the Penobscots smoked the dried leaves to relieve asthma. The Catawba Indians used a sweetened syrup from the boiled root, which they gave to their children for coughs.
The Catawba Indians used a tea of arnica roots for treating back pains. The Dispensary of the United States (22nd edition) states this drug can be dangerous if taken internally and that it has caused severe and even fatal poisoning. Also used as a wash to treat sprains and bruises.
The Catawba Indians steeped the roots in hot water and applied the hot fluid on aching backs.
The Catawba tribe crushed and steeped fresh horsemint leaves in cold water and drank the infusion to allay back pain. Other tribes used horsemint for fever, inflammation, and chills.
A tea of the leaves was used for bronchial and other respiratory problems.
The Natchez drank a tea of the boiled roots as a remedy for pneumonia and was later used to promote the expulsion of phlegm,
The Yokia Indians of Mendocino County used a tea of the boiled leaves of a local species of wormwood to cure bronchitis.
The Kiowa Indians boiled yellow-spined thistle blossoms and applied the resulting liquid to burns and skin sores.
The Mohegans steeped the blossoms of this wild species in warm water when they were in full bloom and took the drink for diabetes.
The Indians of British Columbia utilized a tea of the root bark to offset the effects of diabetes.