Herbal Medicine Plants Approved by the DOH

These are the list of the ten (10) medicinal plants that the Philippine Department of Health (DOH) through its “Traditional Health Program” has endorsed. All ten (10) herbs have been thoroughly tested and have been clinically proven to have medicinal value in the relief and treatment of various aliments:


Lagundi  (Vitex negundo)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Asthma, Cough & Fever – Decoction ( Boil raw fruits or leaves in 2 glasses of water for 15 minutes)Dysentery, Colds & Pain – Decoction ( Boil a handful of leaves & flowers in water to produce a glass, three times a day)
  • Skin diseases (dermatitis, scabies, ulcer, eczema) -Wash & clean the skin/wound with the decoction
  • Headache – Crush leaves may be applied on the forehead
  • Rheumatism, sprain, contusions, insect bites – Pound the leaves and apply on affected area


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Yerba (Hierba ) Buena (Mentha cordifelia)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Pain (headache, stomachache) – Boil chopped leaves in 2 glasses of water for 15 minutes. Divide decoction into 2 parts, drink one part every 3 hours.
  • Rheumatism, arthritis and headache – Crush the fresh leaves and squeeze sap. Massage sap on painful parts with eucalyptus
  • Cough & Cold – Soak 10 fresh leaves in a glass of hot water, drink as tea. (expectorant)
  • Swollen gums – Steep 6 g. of fresh plant in a glass of boiling water for 30 minutes. Use as a gargle solution
  • Toothache – Cut fresh plant and squeeze sap. Soak a piece of cotton in the sap and insert this in aching tooth cavity
  • Menstrual & gas pain – Soak a handful of leaves in a lass of boiling water. Drink infusion.
  • Nausea & Fainting – Crush leaves and apply at nostrils of patients
  • Insect bites – Crush leaves and apply juice on affected area or pound leaves until like a paste, rub on affected area
  • Pruritis – Boil plant alone or with eucalyptus in water. Use decoction as a wash on affected area.



Sambong (Blumea balsamifera)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Anti-edema, diuretic, anti-urolithiasis – Boil chopped leaves in a glass of water for 15 minutes until one glassful remains. Divide decoction into 3 parts, drink one part 3 times a day.
  • Diarrhea – Chopped leaves and boil in a glass of water for 15 minutes. Drink one part every 3 hours.



Tsaang Gubat (Carmona retusa)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Diarrhea – Boil chopped leaves into 2 glasses of water for 15 minutes. Divide decoction into 4 parts. Drink 1 part every 3 hours
  • Stomachache – Boil chopped leaves in 1 glass of water for 15 minutes. Cool and strain.



Niyug-niyogan (Quisqualis indica L.)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Anti-helmintic – The seeds are taken 2 hours after supper. If no worms are expelled, the dose may be repeated after one week. (Caution: Not to be given to children below 4 years old)



Bayabas/Guava (Psidium guajava L.)

Uses & Preparation:
  • For washing wounds – Maybe use twice a day
  • Diarrhea – May be taken 3-4 times a day
    As gargle and for toothache – Warm decoction is used for gargle. Freshly pounded leaves are used for toothache. Boil chopped leaves for 15 minutes at low fire. Do not cover and then let it cool and strain


Akapulko (Cassia alata L.)

(Cassia alata L.)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Anti-fungal (tinea flava, ringworm, athlete’s foot and scabies) – Fresh, matured leaves are pounded. Apply soap to the affected area 1-2 times a day


Ulasimang Bato (Peperonica pellucida)

Ulasimang Bato (Peperonica pellucida)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Lowers uric acid (rheumatism and gout) – One a half cup leaves are boiled in two glass of water over low fire. Do not cover pot. Divide into 3 parts and drink one part 3 times a day



Bawang (Allium sativum)

Uses & Preparation:
  • Hypertension – Maybe fried, roasted, soaked in vinegar for 30 minutes, or blanched in boiled water for 15 minutes. Take 2 pieces 3 times a day after meals.
  • Toothache – Pound a small piece and apply to affected area



Ampalaya (Mamordica Charantia)


Uses & Preparation:
  • Diabetes Mellitus (Mild non-insulin dependent) – Chopped leaves then boil in a glass of water for 15 minutes. Do not cover. Cool and strain. Take 1/3 cup 3 times a day after meals


Reminders on the Use of Herbal Medicine
  1. Avoid the use of insecticide as these may leave poison on plants.
  2. In the preparation of herbal medicine, use a clay pot and remove cover while boiling at low heat.
  3. Use only part of the plant being advocated.
  4. Follow accurate dose of suggested preparation.
  5. Use only one kind of herbal plant for each type of symptoms or sickness.
  6. Stop giving the herbal medication in case untoward reaction such as allergy occurs.
  7. If signs and symptoms are not relieved after 2 to 3 doses of herbal medication, consult a doctor.
Sources: Cuevas, Francis Public Health Nursing in the Philippines. 10th Edition 2007