The Amazon Rainforest is one of the richest biological incubators on the planet and the only source of more than 20% of the world’s Oxygen; it is also home to nearly a quarter of a million different species of plants.
Read on to learn more about the history of the medicinal plants of the Amazon and see our list of examples of medicinal rainforest plants.
Throughout history, the majority of information regarding the medicinal properties of plants that are native to the Amazon rainforest has been collected and retained by the Shamans.
A medicine man, AKA a Shaman, is a collective term for the medicine men of the tribes that live within the rainforest. Aside from the information about the healing properties of the plants, they have also developed a unique detection system for diagnosing and treating people who are unwell. The Shamans are usually the only form of healthcare for the tribes as they do not access traditional healthcare facilities.
Cures for Serious Diseases From Amazonian Plant Extracts
Many plants in the Amazon contain bioactive compounds. These elements could prove exceptionally promising for incurable diseases, one of which is cancer. Amazon plant sources are already treating illnesses such as Leukaemia, Malaria, and Glaucoma, and this is why the potential for the discovery of new drugs is a very real and exciting prospect for us all.
11 Medicinal Plants from the Amazon
It is a spiky bright red fruit with a range of applications, also called the Annatto. The Achiote treats fevers, as an insect repellent, and as a sunscreen. Aside from this, it is also a powerful antioxidant, containing folates, calcium, and carotenoids.
This is one of the few known anti-cancer plants that can provide pain relief from chemotherapy, treat cancer, and infections.
- Una De Gato – Cats Claw
This is a ‘cure-all’ type of Amazonian medicine that helps with ulcers, rheumatism, toothaches, immunity regulation, viruses, and as an aphrodisiac.
Utilized as an anesthetic, the act of simply chewing it will make your entire mouth go numb. You rub it on a wound for the same effect, and it can help with disinfecting wounds, treating gallstones, and respiratory illnesses.
Sodo helps people treat their addictions; from smoking to alcoholism, and more in between.
This is typical for use in the treatment of ovarian cysts. and it may also boost the chances of conception.
This plant has coagulant properties and helps to stem any bleeding.
The leaves of this plant help to treat sore throats, muscle pains, and inflammation.
- Cola De Raton
Also known as ‘rats tail’, this can aid digestive issues.
- Brazillian Ginseng – AKA Suma
A healing tonic, energizer, aphrodisiac, and enhancer of the immune system. Suma also has anti-cancer properties.
- Pusangade Motelo
This can help to ease stress and anxiety.
Almost a quarter of all Western pharmaceuticals come from rainforest materials. But, only 1% of plants of the Amazon Rainforest have undergone testing thus far.
While protecting the sacred space of the Amazon is paramount; the thought of the untapped potential and untested plants, along with their associated medicinal benefits is alluring, to say the least. So, are we going to start seeing more plants in western medicine any time soon? Do we want to? Let’s wait and see.