A fragrant herb that scents clothes and helps to drive away moths, lavender also has medicinal properties. Herbalists prescribe lavender tea and the essential oil of lavender, both made from the plant's blue-violet flowers, to treat common minor ailments such as insomnia, headaches, nausea and flatulence. Years of anecdotal evidence suggest that lavender has a calming and soothing effect that relieves anxiety and promotes gastrointestinal relaxation. Its aroma is thought to stimulate mental processes and help alleviate depression, especially when it is used with other herbs. Like many aromatic essential oils, lavender oil has antiseptic qualities that may kill several types of disease-causing bacteria, and herbalists use it to treat skin ailments such as fungus, burns, wounds, eczema, and acne.
Taken internally for:
Applied externally for:
Over the counter:
Available in dry bulk, capsules and tinctures.
Soft drinks containing kola (or cola) syrups are probably the easiest way to use the herb medicinally, especially for children.
Decoction: 1/2 tsp. powdered seeds boiled and simmered in 1 cup water for 10 minutes.
Combinations: For depression, kola mixed with any or all of the following: oats, damiana and skullcap.