herbs and practices for illnesses in Jamaica

by Myra
(Oak Harbor Wa, USA)


I was wondering what are some of the attitudes and practices concerning sickness?

What types of medicine or herbs are used to prevent and cure illnesses?
I am doing a report on Jamaica and this is one of the questions it wanted me to answer :).


ANSWER: by Wellesley Gayle January 28, 2010

Hi Myra,

I am not too clear on your first question, so I am going to ask you to be just a bit more specific by adding comments below.

The second one is easy. While the metropolitan Jamaican may not necessarily be aware of these, the truth is that many herbs (inc. bushes and seeds) are still used for medicinal purposes in the rural communities. Many are used to make tea, while others are rubbed on.

These include:

  • Leaf-of-life -Good for colds, bronchitis, hypertension and headaches.
  • Shame-A-Macka -Also good for colds, chest pains and stomach pains
  • Dandelion -For skin disorders as well as jaundice, bladder, liver and dropsy.
  • Marijuana (Ganja) -used as eye drop for glaucoma. Tea for diabetes and asthma.
  • Bizzy Nut -for food poisioning, as well as menstrual cramps, headache, gout, rheumatism, jaundice, nausea, vomiting, and upset stomach.
  • Cerassee -for colds, stomach problems and laxative.
  • Ginger -Many uses, improves digestion.
  • Soursop Leaves -For colds and nerves problems.
  • Sarsaparilla -for arthristis, and other pains of the body.
  • Comfrey -for diarrhoea, colds and coughs, sprains, arthritis.
  • Jackanana bush -cold, fever and influenza.
  • Orange peel -Tea used for stomach aches.
  • Spirit Weed -used for colds, headaches,epilepsy and ulcers.
  • Fever Grass -for fever and colds.
  • Spanish Needle -for colic and indigesition.
  • Periwinkle (Ramgoat roses) -Used for diarrhoea and nerve conditions.
  • Aloe Vero (Sinkle-Bible) - Good laxataive and body cleanser, also good for acne and skin blemishes.

I hope that help your research.
Stay in touch.

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