Mint (Yerba Buena)

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Mint (Yerba Buena) in half wine barrel
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About Mint (Yerba Buena) - Clinopodium douglasii

Yerba Buena is a perennial plant of the mint family that grows up to 1 meter long. Leaves are elliptic in shape, and produces small, hairy whitish, or purplish flowers. In the Philippines, Yerba Buena is grown in high elevated areas. As medicinal plant, the parts used are leaves and stem.

Medical Uses:

  • Promotes good health, if taken as tea.
  • Sniffing crushed fresh leaves is effective for dizziness.
  • Leaves soaked in a glass of water is used as mouthwash.
  • Decoction of leaves is used for migraine, headaches, fevers, toothaches, stomach aches, muscles and joint pains, and dysmenorrhea.
  • Pounded or crushed leaves is used to treat insect bites.

What other websites are saying about Mint (yerba buena)

Yerba buena or hierba buena is a name of Spanish origin used for a number of aromatic plants, most of which belong to the mint family. The Spanish name hierba buena translates as "good herb". The specific plant species regarded as yerba buena varies from region to region, depending on what grows wild in the surrounding landscape, or which species is customarily grown in local gardens. Perhaps the most common variation of this plant is spearmint (Mentha spicata). The term has been (and is currently) used to cover a number of aromatic true mints and mint relatives of the genera Satureja or Micromeria. All plants so named have medicinal properties, and some have culinary value as herbal teas or seasonings as well.

Scientific Names: Mentha arvensis Linn.

Yerba Buena is also knows as: Hierba buena (Span.), Minta (Italy), Minze (Germany), Marsh mint (English), Mint, peppermint (Engl.), Po-ho (Chin.)

Yerba buena (Clinopodium douglasii) is a rambling aromatic herb of the mint family that is known and used as herbal medicine worldwide.

Yerba Buena is a perennial plant that grows up to 1 meter in height with oblong shaped leaves with toothed margins. Flowers are hairy and the color is bluish to purplish with axillary head like whorls.

Yerba Buena are grown throughout the world from North America to Asia. The plant takes the form of a sprawling, mat-forming perennial, and is especially abundant close to the coast.

Yerba Buena is more popular for its culinary application because of its minty flavor. Used in salads and as flavor for cooking foods. Yerba buena aroma is also used for scents and fragrances.

Herbal remedies in zamboanga.PNG

News About Yerba Buena / Mint

Plants as medicine

By Brent Montecillo (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - Herbal medicines have lately become a significant industry. People have high trust in ‘herbal’ stuff. They take the word to mean either safe or inexpensive or effective, or all three.

For centuries, natural remedies have been used to fight common ailments. In fact, medicinal drugs are said to be simply synthetic formulations of substances found in nature. In short, today’s medicines are proof of humankind’s continuing trust in nature.

In a study, nearly four out of 10 adults say they have used some form of alternative remedy. ‘Alternative’ refers to medication or procedure without the use of synthetic drugs or modern medical technology. Of the alternative or natural remedies, perhaps plants are the most commonly resorted to for alleviating physical discomforts.

As appealing as the notion of natural remedies is for some, however, not all such remedies are safe or effective. In fact, herbal supplements have to be regulated by government – just like its drug or pharmaceutical counterparts – to ensure that required safety standards are met. And, generally, herbal products are not allowed to make claims of medicinal value.

Herbal supplements are considered as food products. And so the manufacturers that produce these products aren’t required to perform clinical trials or follow the strict manufacturing and labeling regulations required for pharmaceutical drugs. What’s more, some herbal remedies may interact with over-the-counter or prescription medications.

Experts recommend consulting a doctor before trying herbal supplements. But such recommendation often goes unheeded. Again, people think these are safe, and so there is no need to consult a doctor. They argue that the ingredients of these herbal supplements are plants that have been traditionally used, anyway.

In the Philippines, the so-called traditional medicine is heavily reliant on plants, and is necessarily influenced by religion, mysticism, magic, superstition, and folkloric herbalism. Local traditional-medicine practitioners – the arbularyo, the tambalan, and the faith healer – prescribe various herbs for various ailments. Curiously, patients often report of getting healed.

Traditional medicine is so widespread in the country, prompting the Department of Health to launch, in 1992, the Traditional Medicine Program, which aims to promote an effective and safe use of traditional medicine. There is now the Philippine Institute of Traditional and Alternative Health Care, tasked to promote and advocate the use of traditional and alternative health care modalities through scientific research and product development.

The government’s Traditional Medicine Program has since endorsed ten medicinal plants to be used as herbal medicine in Philippines due to their health benefits.

Akapulko (Cassia alata) is a medicinal plant called “ringworm bush or scrub” and “acapulco” in English. It is a herbal medicine for treating tinea infections, insect bites, ringworms, eczema, scabies and itchiness.

Ampalaya (Momordica charantia) is also called “bitter melon” or “bitter gourd” in English. It has been found to be effective in the treatment of diabetes, hemorrhoids, coughs, burns and scalds, and is presently being studied for anti-cancer properties.

Bawang (Allium sativum) is “garlic” in English. Also known as “ahos” in other parts of the country, it is a used to treat infection with its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and anti-hypertensive properties. It is also widely used to reduce cholesterol level in blood.

Bayabas (Psidium guajava), or “guava” in English, is commonly used as antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, anti-spasmodic, antioxidant hepato-protective, anti-allergy, antimicrobial, anti-plasmodial, anti-cough, anti-diabetic, and anti-genotoxic in folkloric medicine.

Lagundi (Vitex negundo), known as “five-leaved chaste tree” in English, is used for treating cough, colds and fever. It is also used as a relief for asthma and pharyngitis, rheumatism, dyspepsia, boils, and diarrhea.

Niyog-niyogan (Quisqualis indica L.) is a vine known as “Chinese honey suckle” in English. It is used for eliminating intestinal parasites.

Sambong (Blumea balsamifera), whose English name is “Ngai camphor” or “Blumea camphor,” is used for treating kidney stones, wounds and cuts, rheumatism, anti-diarrhea, anti spasms, colds and coughs and hypertension.

Tsaang Gubat (Ehretia microphylla Lam.), “wild tea” in English, is taken as tea to treat skin allergies including eczema, scabies and itchiness wounds in child birth.

Ulasimang Bato or Pansit-Pansitan (Peperomia pellucida) is known for its efficacy in treating arthritis and gout.

Yerba Buena (Clinopodium douglasii), known as “peppermint” in English, is used as analgesic to relieve body aches and pains due to rheumatism and gout. It is also used to treat coughs, colds and insect bites.

Yerba buena, herbal medicine - Health Benefits

(Healthy Food)

Yerba buena is also know for its medicinal properties. Yerba buena is used as herbal medicine for the treatment of many ailments which has been traditionally used since ancient times.

Studies have shown that Yerba buena contains pulegone, menthol, menthene, menthenone and limonene.

Common Health benefits from Yerba buena are as follows:

Yerba Buena tea used as body pain reliever . Good for headache, stomach ache and tooth ache.

Yerba Buena poultice used for Rheumatism, arthritis and headache – crush the fresh leaves squeeze sap. Massage sap on painful parts with eucalyptus.

Yerba Buena tea for cough and colds –. Drink as tea. Acts as an expectorant.

Yerba Buena as mouth wash for swollen gums and tooth aches – steep 6 grams of fresh plant in a glass of boiling water for 30 minutes. Use solution as gargle.

Yerba Buena tea for menstrual and gas pain –. Drink infusion. It induces menstrual flow and sweating.

Yerba Buena minty scent for nausea and fainting – crush leaves and apply at nostrils of patients.

Yerba Buena leaves for Insect bites – crush leaves and apply juice on affected part or pound leaves until paste-like. Then rub this on affected part.

Smelly Plant of the Month: Yerba Buena

By Maria Robb (My Life Among The Lithops)

Yerba Buena, or "good herb", is common in gardens all over the New World, from Chile to Alaska. I have a big pot of it in my front yard. Unfortunately, when I photographed it, we were having our usual 70kph winds and I couldn't get a good focus. But you can see it's green and minty!

Yerba Buena refers to different species of mint or mint-like aromatic plants. Each region has its own. In the US and Philippines, Yerba Buena usually refers to Clinopodium douglasii. It's used in tisanes for headaches, stomach-aches, and coughs and colds. In parts of Central America, it is Mentha citrata, a true mint. Good old spearmint, Mentha spicata, is often labeled Yerba Buena as well. In Cuba, it's Mentha nemorosa, or apple mint. All Yerba Buenas can be used in cooking, and medicinally, though obviously the Clinopodium has slightly different properties than the Menthas.

But the most famous use of Yerba Buena is for the traditional Cuban Mojito!

Using herbs in cooking and healing

(The Mercury News)

Long before we started adding herbs to our soups and spaghetti sauce, our distant ancestors were using plants to treatment ailments of the body and the heart.

Horticulturist and herb specialist Patrice Hanlon told the crowd at Our Garden’s free weekly class that herbs have a long and fascinating history in both the kitchen and the medicine cabinet. Here are some of her observations:

• Almost all herbs are from the five Mediterranean climate zones, which includes California.

• With few exceptions, herbs love full sun and lean soil, making them perfect plants for our summer dry, winter wet climate.

• When harvesting herbs, pick early in the morning and before the plants have flowered to get the most potency.

• The shelf life of herbs is about six months, so you’re better off growing your own or buying in small quantities.

• Learning the botanical name of a herb can reveal a lot about the plant. Herbs that have “officinalis” in their name once were sold by apothecaries for medicinal use. “Tinctoria” means the herb was used a tincture, or a dye. “Satureja” identifies the plant as one of a large family of savory herbs.

• Many herbs, including sage, oregano and thyme, contain a natural compound called thymol, which is known to be an antiseptic and digestive aid. In Europe, bitters, an alcoholic blend of herbs, often is served as an after-dinner drink to settle the stomach.

• Herbs are a drug, of a sort, Hanlon says, so it pays to learn about them. Some may have adverse affects. Lemon balm, for example, is not to be used by people with thyroid issues.

Sages (salvias)

• There are more than 900 species of salvias (sages).

• They love hot, dry climates and grow well in our clay soils.

• Sage is good for sore throats and can be used for a mouth wash.

• Salvias are easy to grow and they are so drought tolerant they want absolutely no summer water.


• Savories are one of the oldest cultivated herbs known. Savory has been found in ancient Egyptian tombs.

• Winter savory, also known as the bean herb because Italians use it to season all sorts of beans, is used in many stew and lamb recipes. It can be used as an anti-bacterial and anti-inflamatory.

• Lemon savory is a small annual that is a great seasoning for chicken and makes a great tea. It also used in bitters as an aid to digestion.

• Pink savory is a small shrub that often is mixed with other herbs for a marinade or seasoning.

• Conehead thyme is another small shrub often used with other herbs, such as pink savory, to create a za’atar, a blend of seasonings.

• Za’atar is the Arabic name for the herb Origanum syriacum, and shouldn’t be confused with the blend of seasonings that goes by the same name. It is a wonderful herb on its own, and it produces a beautiful flower.

Other herbs

• Yerba Buena is a minty plant that is native to California. When the Spanish explorers arrived in San Francisco, they found the plant growing abundantly on the island that would be named Yerba Buena, which translates to “good herb.” Yerba Buena is no longer classified as a savory, but it is good for the digestion.

• Mexican oregano has a flavor that is different from the more common Italian oregano. It can be used fresh or dried. This woody perennial grows to about 3½ feet tall.

• Cat thyme is not used for culinary or medicinal purposes, but your cats will love it and it attracts pollinators in the garden.

• Althea officinalis, also known as marsh mallow, produces a gooey concoction that can be used to combat congestion. The French used the plant’s root and sugar to create a sweet confectionary that we later would know as the marshmallow.

• Lovage is a leafy herb that can be used in salads in the summer and soups in the winter. It’s good for the digestive system and is a favorite plant for the swallowtail butterfly.

• Hops, important in the brewing of beer, is a beautiful plant in the garden and makes a tasty tea. Hanlon says the herb is supposed to have properties that help you relax.

• Lemon balm has a lemony flavor and can be used in cooking and as a medicinal aid to digestion, but it’s not for those with thyroid disease.

• Lemon verbena is an extremely popular herb used in cooking and for tea. The plant is deciduous and grows into a large shrub that can be trained into a small tree. The herb is a favorite of bees, too.

• Basils are well known and used in the culinary world. Some varieties also have been used as a skin toner and is said to reduce stress, increase stamina and help against the aging process. In addition to making great pesto and seasonings, basil can be used in tea, oils and vinegars.

Next time in the Garden, starting a winter vegetable garden.

Our Garden

• Our Garden offers free classes at 10 a.m. every Wednesday from April through October. Master Gardeners are available to answer questions and a large selection of seedling are available. All produce grown at the garden is donated to the Monument Crisis Center in Concord. The garden is at Wiget Lane and Shadelands Drive, Walnut Creek.

4 Plants that Heal — And How to Use Them!

(Tree People Blog)

People have been using plants for our health and well-being for thousands of years–even to this day. For instance, we consume super foods like avocados or goji berries to strengthen and nourish our bodies. But how often do we overlook these plants when we’re sick?

Some plants–even those abundant in our landscapes–have been known for their healing properties by people around the world for centuries. Incorporate them into your garden this year and improve your wellness!


Roses offer us all kinds of relief–whether sipping rose hip tea or spritzing rose water. Did you know that rose petals are full of vitamins and minerals? It’s true! Their anti-inflammatory properties relieve nausea, ulcers and menstrual cramps.

Roses come in a wide variety from all over the world. However, consider planting native roses in your garden (Rosa californica, Rosa woodsii, etc.) to enjoy their simplicity, climate appropriateness and wonderful medicinal benefits.

When blooms start to open in spring head out to your garden to collect petals for a delicious rose petal butter.

To make rose petal butter:

Gather one cup of freshly blossoming rose petals. Remove petals from the flower and add into a mixing bowl. Add a stick of softened butter and mix. Place into a glass jar and allow to infuse for 24 hours before enjoying on toast or crackers.


The fresh scent of mint alone can awaken your mind and clear your senses. This hardy and easy to grow herb is mostly known for its culinary uses. The most commonly known varieties are peppermint (Mentha x piperita) and spearmint (Mentha spicata). Shake things up and grow something unique! Try out mountain mint (Pycnanthemum sp.), yerba buena (Satureja douglasii) or pennyroyal (Mentha pulegium) to enjoy a full variety of flavors.

Want a new addition to your culinary adventures that has a variety of health benefits, too? Try making a mint vinegar. Herbal-infused vinegar is tasty and simple to make, while also helping your body absorb vitamins and minerals.

To make mint vinegar:

Harvest enough mint to fill a glass jar. Finely chop the mint and fill the jar, cover with pasteurized apple cider vinegar and seal with a lid. Place in your cupboard for 6 weeks before use. It will add a nice kick to any salad, or dilute it with water to create a refreshing tonic!


The wild and thorny canes of this plant produce a hedge with beautiful white flowers in spring. Everyone knows that blackberries have a number of benefits–but did you know that their leaves are healthy, too? Blackberry leaves are great for for sore throats or to clean a wound.

To make blackberry leaf tea:

Gather leafed branches and hang upside down in a well-ventilated area until leaves are dried. (Ensure plenty of air circulation to avoid mold growth.) Infuse 1 oz of dried leaves in a pint of boiling water.


If there is one thing we should all have in our cupboards, it’s sage. Sages (Salvia) grow all over the world’s Mediterranean climates. While the most common sage (Salvia officinalis) is mostly used as a culinary herb in roasts, it also makes a tasty cleansing tea with anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial qualities–plus it’s full of antioxidants! Some varieties, like black sage (Salvia mellifera) are even used as a pain reliever.

To make a sage foot bath:

Place a handful of black sage leaves and stems in a foot bath and steep for 5 – 10 minutes before placing feet into the bath.

Health Benefits of Yerba Buena

(Health Tips - Kalusugan mo)

Yerba Buena is a herb from the mint family. Its scientific name is Clinopodium Douglasii from the kingdom Plantae and takes the form of mat-forming perennial with elongated leaves and in summer, it bears small whitish or purplish flowers.

In Spanish speaking countries, the term “yerba buena” refers to the particular local species of mint. The term has been and is currently used to cover a number of aromatic mint relatives of the Clinopodium. The word Yerba Buena is Spanish for "good herb" and was the former name of the California city of San Francisco. All plants so named have medicinal properties and some have culinary value as teas or seasonings.

Yerba Buena has been known as a medicinal plant worldwide. Yerba Buena has been consumed for centuries as tea and herbal medicine as a pain reliever (analgesic). Today, this folk medicine's efficacy has been validated by scientific research. In the Philippines, Yerba Buena is one of the 10 herbs endorsed by the Department of Health (DOH) as an effective alternative medicine for aches and pains.

As an herbal medicine, a decoction (boil leaves then strain) of Yerba Buena is effective for minor ailments such as headaches, toothaches and joint pains. It can also relive stomach aches due to gas buildup and indigestion. The fresh and dried leaves can both be used for the decoction. And because Yerba Buena belongs to the mint family, soaking fresh leaves in a glass of water (30 to 45 minutes) makes for a good mouth wash for a clean, fresh smelling breath.

Benefits & Treatment of :

• Arthritis
• Head aches
• Tooth aches
• Mouth wash
• Relief of intestinal gas
• Stomach aches
• Indigestion
• Drink as tea for general good health.

Yerba Buena Tea

By Judith Larner Lowry

Last week, we served Yerba Buena Tea to attendees at the Heirloom Expo in Santa Rosa, and I was impressed anew by the subtly pleasing qualities of this easy-to-make tea from the California native groundcover called Satureja douglasii. This wonderful little plant from the mint family grows under oak trees, where it is said to be difficult to find plants that survive, especially if you follow the rule to avoid watering out of season under oak trees. This rule is important because some diseases attacking oaks come from the unCalifornian combination of moisture and heat, which is not normally occurring in a Mediterranean climate like ours in California. Actually, I think it's easy to garden or plant under oak trees, but that's another topic.

Yerba buena also can be found thriving at the edge of chaparral and coastal scrub, making a lovely neat chartreuse edging along paths and trails. In the early days of our 30-year-old Larner Seeds Demonstration Garden in Bolinas, I couldn't get yerba buena to do well. Now that "things," and by "things," I mean the many qualities of shade and sun and soil that have developed through the years, have changed, it takes off and seems to do well everywhere we put it, except where outcompeted by native blackberry.

So I have lots of material for tea-making. For a crowd, I use approximately two masses or clumps of stems and leaves that would fit in both my hands to make a 4-quart stockpot full of tea. This is always a matter of taste, but I prefer it rather mild. Rinse it off and remove oak leaves that seem to always be cau