A perennial weed, plantain doesn’t require more than just a tiny crack in your driveway to show up. Native Americans call it ‘the white man’s footprint’ as it seemed to follow European settlers in finding its way to America. The bushy green leaves and small, stalk-like buds have unique nutritive potential and can reduce irritation, quell harmful bugs and ease pain. Here’s a look into the various healing properties of the backyard plantain.

1. Wounds & Damaged Skin
Rich in vitamin A and antioxidants, backyard plantain works as a wonderful skin healer for wounds and cuts. Its gentle astringent action reduces diaper rashes and hemorrhoids. You can chew on a few plantain leaves or grind a few to make a paste and apply this topically over the affected area to prevent infection or scarring. (Related Article: DIY Milk & Almond Body Scrub Recipe For Damaged Skin)

2. Cough & Chronic Bronchitis
The anti-inflammatory properties of this weed are known to soothe inflamed mucous membranes, thus easing cough. It is also a potent immune booster and works as a demulcent, thereby treating dry cough. Clinical trials carried out in Bulgaria documented the efficacy of plantain leaves in treating chronic bronchitis. (Related Article: 5 Ways To Combat Cold & Flu Season Naturally)

3. Antimicrobial
Plantain is rich in vitamin C, apigenin, oleanolic acid, linoleic acid, sorbitol and tannins. The antimicrobial activity of this weed can be attributed to these constituents. Hot water extracts from the plant were found to show resistance to harmful bacteria in a study conducted in Taiwan. (Related Article: 5 Natural Antibiotics You Probably Didn’t Know About)

4. Blood Cleansing
Backyard plantain serves as a herbal pain reliever for stings or bites from bugs or insects. It cleanses the blood and works well to draw out the poison of snake bites and poison ivy. (Related Article: The Amazing Benefits Of Neem – A Natural Blood Purifier)

5. Digestion
The leaves and seeds of backyard plantain can reduce inflammation and repair damage to the gut lining. They also keep your gut clean and work as a mild laxative. (Related Article: Ease Your Digestion With Cumin Tea)

This versatile wild herb will keep you healthy and happy for a long time. So, add it to your salads, chew on some fresh leaves, enjoy it in a stir-fry, or make a soothing tea with it.

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With a Master’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Exeter,UK and a diploma in food science & quality control, Stephlina is intrigued with the intricacies of the human body. She shares a deep interest in human diseases and believes that popping pills is not the only solution to fight an ailment.