Mint relaxes the peripheral blood vessels, calms smooth muscle spasms, dries dampness, expels phlegm, and clears the head. It is regarded as an excellent remedy for stomach cramps due to its ability to reduce hypercontractability of the intestinal muscles. It is often added to formulas using laxative herbs, such as cascara sagrada, to prevent intestinal gripe. Peppermint is considered the strongest mint medicinally, though the other mints have medicinal benefit as well. Peppermint has activity against a wide range of pathogens including streptococcus, staphylococcus, and candida.
Uva-ursi clears heat and toxins, reduces inflammation, stimulates kidney activity, and curbs infec- tion. In the urinary tract arbutin, one of this herb's constituents, is converted to hydroquinine, which helps to alkalinize the urine, thereby inhibiting urinary tract infection. Uva-ursi also soothes and promotes the healing of urinary tissue.
Marshmallow root is an ingredient in many lung preparations and cough syrups, as well as preparations for urinary tract problems, stomach ailments, and wound healing.
Native Americans used this herb externally for burns, swelling of the lymph nodes, and insect bites. Internally, it was used for pain associated with headaches and stomachaches, measles, coughs, and gonorrhea. It was also used for rattlesnake bites. Today, the herb is used for prophylaxis and treatment of flu, sepsis, and mild to moderate cold infections.
Epimedium warms the kidneys, tonifies yang, stimulates the pituitary gland and thus the gonads and increases sperm production and motility. It also dilates capillaries and larger blood vessels, strengthens bones, improves metabolism, and exhibits a mild androgenic effect.
Tribulus has a long history of use in ancient Greece and India as a physical rejuvenation tonic. In China, it is used as a component of therapy for conditions affecting the liver, kidney, cardiovascular system, and immune system. It has also been used in Eastern European folk medicine for increased muscle strength and sexual potency.