A Materia Medica is a compilation of herbs and other substances used for healing or medicine. My Materia Medica specifies the actions, energetics, constituents, use, and safety of each substance along with growing/harvesting tips.
I will be adding a new herb each month, so feel free to check back in as my Materia Medica grows!
Glossary of terms used in the Materia Medica. I will be adding to this as each new plant species and term arises.
Abortifacient – Causes abortion
Analgesic – Agent that relieves physical pain
Anthelmintic – Agent that expels or kills internal worms or parasites
Anti-bacterial – Stops or destroys the growth of bacteria
Antidote – May help neutralize toxins
Anti-fungal – Stops or destroys the growth of bacteria
Ant-inflammatory – Agent that reduces inflammation
Antiphlogistic – Acts against inflammation or fever
Antirheumatic – Used to prevent or relieve rheumatism
Antiseptic – Agent that prevents bacterial growth and infection
Aperient – Agent used to relieve constipation
Astringent – Substance that contracts body tissues; may control secretions or bleeding
Bactericide – Substance that kills bacteria
Bitter – Bitter taste; stimulates digestive actions and increases appetite
Carminative – Prevents formation of gas in gastrointestinal tract or helps relieve gas
Cholagogue – Action that promotes bile flow from gall bladder into duodenum (small intestine)
Coagulant – Substance that promotes or produces coagulation (clotting)
Decoagulant – Slows or prevents the clotting of blood
Demulcent – Action that soothes and softens injured or inflamed tissue, often those that contain mucilage
Depurative – Cleans or purifies blood through form of elimination
Diaphoretic – Induces perspiration
Diuretic – Substance that promotes production of urine
Emmenagogue – Stimulates blood flow in pelvic area and uterus; encourages menstrual bleeding
Emollient – Softens, smoothes, and protects inflamed tissue such as skin or internal mucous membranes
Hemostatic – Substance that stops bleeding
Hepatic – Relating to and possibly affecting the liver
Laxative – Substance that promotes bowel movements
Purgative – Agent that works fast to empty intestines
Sedative – Agent that causes a calming, tranquilizing effect
Stimulant – Agent that increases physical energy and blood circulation; increases internal heat
Stomachic – Action that strengthens, tones, or stimulates the stomach
Tonic – Agent that strengthens, restores, or invigorates the entire body or specific organs
Vermifuge – Expels intestinal worms
Vulnerary – Promotes wound healing by protecting against infection and stimulating cell growth
Keep up to date on the latest herb of the month!
The information provided by Rooted Essence is for educational purposes only. It is not meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. Results from use of herbs may vary by person, and some herbs may suppress or hinder actions of other medications. It is advised to consult with your health care provider before using them.
Sources for glossary and Materia Medica:
Bruton-Seal, Julie, Matthew Seal, and John Parkinson. The Herbalist’s Bible: John Parkinson’s Lost Classic Rediscovered:
Theatrum Botanicum (1640). Print.
Ritchason, Jack. The Little Herb Encyclopedia. Pleasant Grove, UT: Woodland Health, 1995. Print.
Gladstar, Rosemary. Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner’s Guide. North Adams, MA: Storey Pub., 2012. Print.
Kowalchik, Claire, William H. Hylton, and Anna Carr. Rodale’s Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs. Emmaus, PA: Rodale,
Steel, Susannah. Home Herbal: Cook, Brew & Blend Your Own Herbs. New York: DK, 2011. Print.