Original Jamaican Herbs to try that Boost & Support your Immune System, and Detoxify the body!

1. Sorrel:

389 Jamaican Sorrel Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock

Traditionally a popular Christmas drink, is now popular all year round in Jamaica as the plant has been commercialized, largely because of recently discovered medicinal values. Sorrel is said to contain anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory ingredients and is a good remedy for cough and cold and will boost the immune system.

2. Soursop leaf:

790 Soursop Leaves Stock Photos and Images - 123RF

The cancer healing properties of the soursop fruit has been raved about in Jamaica. The leaves of the soursop tree also play an important role in traditional medicine. Tea made from the leaves is a good remedy for several ailments such as diabetes, nerve problems, insomnia, colds, high blood pressure, and kidney problems.

3. Cerasee:

Jamaican Bush Tea: The Bitter Herb, the Better Body -  TropicsgourmetTropicsgourmet
Asosi - Cerasee

Made from the leaves and stems of the Bitter Melon (Bitter Gourd) plant, is used throughout Jamaica and the Caribbean as a potent blood purifier. Apart from its ability to cleanse drug-related toxins from the body, Cerasee is known to lower blood sugar, blood pressure, aid digestive issues and kill parasites or worms.

Rich in Vitamins A, C, iron and phosphorous, Cerasee excels in detoxing the body. However, its many therapeutic benefits originate from its rich antioxidant and polyphenol content.

Cerasee’s anti-microbial properties have long been used to kill worms and parasites in the body. In addition, its laxative effects also help to expel them.

Cerasee is a long-time remedy used to flush residual medication and drug-related toxins like THC out of the blood. If used continuously over a short period of time, its potent diuretic properties can dehydrate the body.

In the Caribbean, Cerasee is sometimes combined with other herbs to make a “bush” bath that is used to alleviate skin conditions like eczema, rash or ringworms (fungal infections)

Cerasee Tea is great for women experiencing menstrual cramps. It helps to alleviate pain and cramps.

4. Chaney Root:

This is the root of the Chaney tree which, when boiled (sometimes with other roots) to make a tonic, is reputed to be a good cure for men experiencing sexual health problems, as it is said to contain aphrodisiac properties. Some other health benefits include cleaning of the blood, alleviating rheumatism and arthritis and promoting physical strength and wellbeing.

5. Ginger:

Ginger beer is a popular drink made from the root of the ginger plant. Ginger is also used as a culinary flavoring but its medicinal qualities cannot be overstated. Ginger is a good remedy for gastroenteritis, upset stomach, indigestion, and other ailments such as nausea, to lower blood sugar levels, relieve menstrual pain, fights infection, and may also help to protect against Alzheimer’s. Ginger is antiseptic by nature, great for promoting circulation, and is anti-inflammatory.

6. Guava Leaves: The guava plant is known to have edible fruits that some people like to eat for their sweet taste. The plant is found in abundance in tropical countries and its leaves are used as an herbal remedy to lower blood pressure. Soothed Stomach – Irritable digestion is no fun, especially if you’re away from home when it strikes. Drinking guava leaves with a bit of guava root and boiling water could reduce abdominal pain and help ease similar digestive issues. Other benefits of Guava include:

*Improved Fat Storage – In as little as eight weeks, regular uses of guava leaves could help with the absorption and regulation of fats.

*Blood Sugar – Compounds in guava leaf tea can help inhibit maltose and sucrose, two sugars, from being absorbed by the body following a meal.                                         

*Support Immune System – Vitamin C and iron in guava leaves can help boost immunity and strengthen the respiratory system.                                                                            

*Tooth Pain – If you’ve ever had a toothache, you may truly appreciate these health benefits of guava leaves. Guava leaves can be ground and applied to gums to relieve tooth pain. *Acne – Vitamin C in guava leaves can help reduce acne.                                               

*Supports Healthy Hair – In addition to drinking guava leaf tea like the Herbal Goodness Guava Leaf Tea, you could boil and apply guava leaves to the scalp to support healthy hair.                                                                                                                                    

*Improved Sleep.

7. Guinea Hen Weed:

This herb is grown wildly in Jamaica. It is known to have several health benefits which include alleviating problems associated with the prostate, fibroids, cancer and menstrual cramps. When soaked in alcohol, guinea hen weed is good for headaches when applied to the spot. The weed can be used with leaves from the lignum vitae tree to make a tea that is good for high blood pressure, asthma, epilepsy and rheumatism.

8. Leaf of Life:

Herbals...... Leaf of Life. It doesn't even need soil to grow. Amazing |  Suculentas, Horta jardim, Jardinagem

Leaf of Life, as the name suggests, can be a life-saving plant. The plant is native to Madagascar but is grown in most tropical areas including Jamaica where it is widely used as a herbal remedy to treat respiratory conditions such as asthma, colds, coughs, shortness of breath and bronchitis. It is usually consumed as a tea, blended in juices, or eaten raw.

The leaf of life is also said to be a great treatment for kidney stones. Science seems to be just catching up to this remedy as a study conducted in 2014 revealed that rats given a treatment containing the plant extracts were less likely to develop kidney stones. Those rats given the treatment had reduced levels of urine oxalates, and those oxalates are typically what cause kidney stones.

Recent studies have also been conducted that show that the leaf of life may be beneficial for women who are pregnant. A study conducted on pregnant women suffering from sleep disorders was given 350 mg tablets that contained the plant extract. At the end of the study, the women reported experiencing fewer wake-ups and improved quality of sleep. In this study, no adverse effects were reported on either mother or fetus.

9. Medina:

In Jamaica, it is commonly used to combat a variety of ailments but it is probably best known of all as an aphrodisiac, particularly a booster for males’ sexuality. It is an evergreen plant that thrives all year round in tropical climates and grows throughout many forested areas on the island, so its leaves are harvested from the wild.  Medina is also used in Jamaican culture as a remedy for the common cold and fevers, back and joint pain, and also used to combat fatigue. Due to its high iron content, it is a good way to combat anemia and low blood count. It is also popularly used to eliminate the symptoms of a cold, fever and gas. Medina can be effective in the fight against the effects of the COVID-19 virus.

10. Thyme:

Most popularly known as a culinary flavoring, in Jamaica, thyme is said to be good for a whole lot more. Some of the medicinal benefits include remedies for asthma, bronchitis, coughs, respiratory diseases, diarrhea and stomach cramps.

11. Tuna:

One of the most popular uses of tuna is as a shampoo, another being as a remedy for back pain. However, Tuna juice is also good for Type II diabetes, high cholesterol, and other ailments.

12. Turmeric:

13 Turmeric Plant ideas | turmeric plant, turmeric, plants

Turmeric is a good remedy for several conditions associated with the liver and the kidney, also for arthritis, colds, and other conditions such as chronic anterior uveitis, conjunctivitis, skin cancer, smallpox, chickenpox, wound healing, urinary tract infections, and liver ailments.

13. Sarsaparilla:

SARSAPARILLA (<i>Smilax aspera</i> L) en Soria Natural

This is a tropical plant from the genus Smilax. The climbing, woody vine grows deep in the canopy of the rainforest. It’s native to South America, Jamaica, the Caribbean, Mexico, Honduras, and the West Indies. One of the more popular herb names in Jamaica, Sarsaparilla is considered a good tonic source but is also good for a variety of complaints such as arthritis, cancer, rheumatism, colds, fever, multiple sclerosis, eczema, psoriasis, ringworm, among other ailments. The root was also thought to cure leprosy due to its “blood-purifying” properties. Sarsaparilla was later introduced into European medicine and eventually registered as an herb in the United States Pharmacopoeia to treat Syphilis.

14. Search Me Heart:

This herb is said to be good for colds, pains in the chest, and stomach problems. Search-my-heart (Rhytidophyllum Tomentosum)

The Jamaican herb Search-my-heart is used as a general tea drink on the Island to treat Asthma, Mucous Congestion and the common cold. This plant is from the Gesneriaceae family and the herb traditionally grows wild in Jamaica and is naturally a part of the history of the country.  The leaves of the plant should be stripped, cut into small pieces,  and dried, Then instead of boiling, it should be steeped for 15 minutes in boiled water.  

15. Shama Macka:

Asthma, biliousness, colds, dysentery, indigestion, influenza, jaundice and vaginal problems are some of the complaints that Shama Macka will address. Shama Macka goes by many names in Jamaica. It is a traditional creeping plant that thrives under shrubs and trees. If you come in contact with it you will find that it is a very unique plant.

It’s also called Shame’ Old’ Lady because when you touch it, it closes up (It’s sensitive to the touch). 

16. Noni:

The juice of the Noni fruit is said to contain Vitamins C and A, niacin and iron. Consumers of the juice will tell you that it tastes awful, however, the benefits derived far outweigh that negative factor as it is said to have several health benefits. These include remedies for arthritis, hypertension, stroke, diabetes and heart conditions, among other benefits.

17. Oregano:

Tea made from oregano leaves is used to treat bronchial problems, indigestion, bloating, urinary problems and headaches.

18. Papaya: (Leaves):

The papaya fruit is loaded with Vitamin C and also contains moderate levels of Vitamin A, magnesium and potassium. The leaves, when used to make tea, give you a beverage that is said to treat heart conditions, malaria, stroke, dengue fever, whooping cough and other respiratory ailments.

19. Cinnamon:

Cinnamon - Wikipedia

Leaves from the Cinnamon plant are commonly used as spice in porridges and other preparations but when boiled as tea is good for upset stomach, vomiting and colds.

20. Custard Apple (leaves):

A tea made from the leaves of the custard apple tree is said to be good for treating fevers, syphilis and colic.

21. Eucalyptus (Oil):

Healing Properties of Eucalyptus Oil - One Green Planet

Oil made from the eucalyptus plant is used for several purposes as it contains analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antibacterial, antiviral, expectorant, stimulant properties.

22. Fever Grass:

Also known as Lemon Grass, a tea made from fever grass reduces fever, hence the name. It is also used for relieving headaches and stomach and urinary problems.

23. Garlic:

Use mostly for culinary purposes, the strong antioxidant qualities of garlic make it a popular remedy for high blood pressure and the common cold. It may also help prevent Alzheimer’s disease and improve bone health.

24. Irish Moss:

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 Despite its name, Irish moss (Chondrus crispus) isn’t really a moss: It’s a type of algae, or seaweed. Health benefits of Irish moss and other seaweeds – It provides important health benefits. For example, It is rich in Iodine, which is an important nutrient for your thyroid. Iodine helps your thyroid produce hormones that control your metabolism, nerves, and bone growth. Irish moss is largely made of a jelly-like substance known as carrageenan, which makes Irish moss so broadly useful. Carageenan can be used as a vegan substitute for gelatin, as well as a general emulsifier, so it can be found in everything from ice cream to infant formula.

25. Spanish Needle:

The Spanish Needle’s leaves are oppositely arranged and the plant may flower at any time of the year. The plant grows freely in Jamaica and is also known by names such as Black Jack, Needle Grass, Broomstick, Beggars Tick and Demon Spike Grass.

How to use Spanish Needle?

Spanish Needle may be used in a number of ways in order to reap the plant’s health benefits. The leaves may be eaten raw like green vegetables or used as a potherb. Spanish Needle may also be boiled and prepared with dishes such as callaloo and cabbage to create a tasty and healthy meal that is loaded with a number of health benefits. The sap obtained from the crushed leaves of the plant can also be used on fresh cuts to aid in speeding up the blood clotting. Spanish Needle is also used in Jamaica and in many other parts of the world to make herbal tea. The herbal tea prepared from the plant is commonly used as a general beverage or as a treatment for worms and flatulence.

Health Benefits of Spanish Needle

The root, leaves and seed of the Spanish Needle have been known to possess anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiseptic, antimicrobial and antidysenteric properties. Spanish Needle also serves as a diuretic and contains antimalarial properties, making extracts from the plant treatment for malaria in certain cultures. Due to the plant’s antiseptic properties, plant extract may also be used as a natural mouthwash to combat odor-causing germs along with sore gums and mouth. The herb is also beneficial in treating joint discomfort, swellings, colic, stomach ailments along with the cold and flu.

26. Aloe Vera:

Aloe Vera is used to fight infections, boost the immune system, reduce inflammation in arthritis, improve the skin, treat ulcers and heartburn, detox, improve cardiovascular health, among other things.

27. Annatto:

IMEXA | Products | Annatto Seed

The bark, leaves and seeds of the Annatto plant are used as herbal medicine. The annatto is used in a product known as Cumsee Lotion which is very effective in curing ulcers, relieving pain, reducing blood pressure, also as a sexual stimulant among other things.  

28.  Basil:

Basil Companion Planting Guide: 7 Plants to Grow With Basil - 2021 -  MasterClass

Tea made from this plant is used to calm an upset stomach.

29. Bissy (Kola Nut):

Bissy (Cola Nut) – WALTERS & WRIGHT

Bissy is the Jamaican name for kola nut. Bissy is best known as an antidote for poisons but is also useful to relieve menstrual cramps, headache, nausea, vomiting, indigestion, gout, rheumatism, jaundice and other uses.

30. Cannabis (Marijuana): 

Marijuana plant Pictures, Marijuana plant Stock Photos & Images |  Depositphotos®

There is a growing list of benefits that can be derived from Cannabis. Possession of small amounts of marijuana was decriminalized in 2015, so the law allows for residents to have up to five plants for personal use. Jamaicans caught with amounts of marijuana above the legal threshold face sanctions and fines of up to $500 JMD.

Medical Marijuana is currently legal in Jamaica, with the first medical dispensaries opening in 2018. 

Here are some of the benefits of cannabis. These benefits are not necessarily to be derived from smoking and some may only relate to pharmaceuticals derived from the herb. 

Relieves arthritis, stops cancer cells from spreading, eases the pain associated with multiple sclerosis, reduces severe pain, treats glaucoma, decreases anxiety, relieves arthritis, prevents or slows the progress of Alzheimer’s disease, controls epileptic seizures, protects the brain after a stroke, prevents spread of cancer, helps against post-traumatic stress disease (PTSD), among other benefits.

In Jamaica, it is also used for asthma, bronchitis, and all problems dealing with mucus congestion, usually when used to make tea and consumed.


NOTE: We highly recommend that before using any herbal medications, you should consult your health care provider or medical doctor for professional advice.

(1) Comment

  1. zoritoler imol

    I am not sure where you are getting your information, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for wonderful info I was looking for this info for my mission.

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