What trees can be used for medicine?
From trees we extract products that are used for the manufacture of medicines.
The pharmaceutical industry obtains the majority of drugs through chemical processes. However, many products that now can can be produced in the laboratory are based on old components from plants that were already used in a natural way in the past.
Aspirin is the trade name for acetylsalicylic acid, a component obtained synthetically in 1853 by Charles Frederic Gerhardt It derives from salicin which comes from the willow (Salix sp.)., before the aspirin was invented, people used the leaves of the willow to make preparations for fighting the same aches that this medicine is used for: pain, inflammation, fever and platelet aggregation.
The importance of taxol, a derivative obtained from the Pacific yew (Taxus brevifolia) in the treatment of cancer and especially in regard to breast cancer, has been approved by the U.S. FDA.
The lentiscus mastic is a resin used by dentists to produce dental cement. Before applying it to modern medicine, mastic was already widely used as chewing gum to favor smell and fortify gums. Among the major medical applications of turpentine, obtained from pine resin, is its ability to stimulate the production of urine or eliminate intestinal worms.
Used externally it is used as an astringent for the treatment of wounds or scratches. Mixed with animal fat, it makes a paste that can be done to remedy cold or bronchitis. In fact the formula of the product “Vicks vaporub” contains this product among its ingredients.
Undoubtedly many more natural remedies are derived from flowers, bark, leaves, resins or latex from the trees. The birch tree is considered one of the best diuretics for their ability to prevent fluid retention.
Other medicine trees
The Carob seed is very rich in mucilages and its ideal in case of constipation. The horse chestnut tree is one of the best remedies for toning the arteries and capillaries, therefore it is recommended in the problems of varicose veins, hemorrhoids or celulitis.
It is well known the use of eucalyptus or elderberries as effective remedies for treating cold, flu, and asthma and other respiratory problems. And what to say about the flowers and bracts of lime tree in the preparation of the so renowned herbal tea, in the treatment of insomnia, stress, tachycardia, and other problems of the nerves.
In this way we could go on mentioning many more trees with proven medicinal properties throughout the world and many other ones which are going subjected to recent studies. Within the rainforest there are many more who we do not know and probably contain principles of healing for many diseases that afflict us.
*Related information: What industrial products are harvested from trees?
More information on trees
1 December, 2021