If you’re considering adding plants to the many ways you can manage your health and wellness, you’re in luck. There’s a laundry list of options to choose from and a number of ways they can potentially help, from being an anti-inflammatory to face moisturizer.
But where to start? To help get you started, we asked seven influencers what their favorite plants are and how they use them.
Check out what they said below.
One of my favorite plants for supporting health and well-being is burdock root. Burdock is a nutrient-packed vegetable native to Europe and Asia that now grows as a wild weed across the United States. Burdock root has a number of health benefits:
- It can strengthen the lymphatic system and reduces inflammation.
- It acts as a diuretic, clearing water retention.
- It can help treat skin conditions, such as psoriasis, eczema, boils, and acne.
One of my favorite ways to enjoy burdock root is as an infusion, or a tea brewed for four to eight hours. It’s best taken as an infusion for longer periods of time to experience the full benefits. The infusion itself is easy to make, and the root can be reused several times. You can then cook it into rice dishes, stir-fries, or toss it into salads. Note that the burdock root has a mild, slightly bitter, and earthy flavor.
- 2–4 tsp. burdock root
- 32 oz. mason jar
- hot water
- Add burdock root to mason jar.
- Top with hot water and cover with a lid.
- Let the infusion sit 4–8 hours, strain, and enjoy!
- You can consume it at room temperature or heat up slightly. It’ll lasts 24–48 hours in the fridge.
- Repeat this process three to four times. You can then use the burdock root in other meals.
Kristin Dahl is a Los Angeles-based author, nutritionist, and founder of Women’s Wellness Collective and the holistic lifestyle hub Dahl House Nutrition. She offers a fresh take on holistic living in a modern world. You can find her on Instagram.
Brigit Anna McNeill
My favorite plant for health and wellness is the common stinging nettle (Urtica dioica).
Initially, the nettle came with bad memories for me because I was stung by them as a child. As a result, I had developed a little bit of a fear around this plant, but I eventually grew to love it. It’s highly nutritious and is packed with:
- vitamins A, K, and C
- B vitamins
To get the most from nettles they need to be consumed regularly and over time. My favorite way to use them is to create an infusion, which I’ll often drink throughout the day.
- Kilner jar
- handful of fresh nettles
- hot boiling water
- Add one big handful of fresh nettles per pint of hot, just boiled water to Kilner jar.
- Leave it with the lid on overnight.
- In the morning, strain plant material and enjoy.
Although my favorite herb tends to fluctuate with the seasons, I always come back to Schisandra. I usually carry a wide assortment of herbs in a briefcase anywhere I go, but if I’m running out the door, you’ll most certainly find a hefty bottle of Schisandra in my purse.
I love the Schisandra berry because it embodies all five flavors of traditional Chinese medicine.
The five flavors are:
- pungent (umami)
These flavors are seen as energetic symbols within a plant and demonstrate its distinct healing traits. It may also help lower stress levels.
One of my favorite ways to enjoy Schisandra is to simmer it with mushrooms, such as reishi, lions mane, turkey tail, or Agaricus, as they’re high in vitamin C.
Adriana is a rainforest herbalist from Costa Rica and is the founder of the Brooklyn-based company Anima Mundi Herbals.
My favorite plant is the rose. Rosehips are packed with vitamin C, which can help give our immune system the extra support it needs. It also sports anti-inflammatory properties.
There are a number of ways I use rose (both hips and petals), which include a tea bath and herbal tea.
- 2 cups rose petals
- 1 cup rosehips
- In a large stockpot, add 2 cups of rose petals and 1 cup of rosehips and fill with water.
- Let simmer for 10 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and let sit for up to 24 hours. The longer it sits, the more potent it is.
- Strain and add directly to bath water.
- Optional: Add fresh rose petal or fresh whole rose buds for an aromatic and extra energetic touch.
Herbal tea (for drinking)
- 1 tbsp. of dried rose petal
- 1 tbsp. of dried rosehips
- 16 oz. water
- Place herbs and water in a small pot. Bring to a simmer for 5 minutes.
- Turn off heat and let steep for 10–15 more minutes.
- Strain and enjoy.
Tiffany La Forge
My favorite plant for wellness is passionflower. I live with a chronic anxiety disorder, and so passionflower’s calming properties really help me. Passionflower also does wonders for sleep, so I love making it into an herbal tea before bed.
- 1 tsp. dried passionflower
- 1 cup of boiling water
- Steep dried passionflower in boiling water for 6–8 minutes.
- Optional: Sweeten with a touch of honey.
The hemp plant is hands down my favorite plant for health and wellness, particularly hemp seeds and the oil that’s produced from them. I just love the countless uses for the seeds and oil, from cooking with them to incorporating them into my skin care routine.
It’s known to not clog pores, so it’s perfect for my combination skin that can break out occasionally. It also helps soothe and moisturize. Plus, it’s such a good source of protein and vitamins when you eat it.
I cook with hempseed oil. It makes a delicious salad dressing when mixed with lemon juice. I also love to throw them into my oatmeal for added flavor and crunch. But my absolute favorite use is applying the oil to my skin. It makes a fantastic all-over body moisturizer after a shower or bath.
Dana Murray is a licensed aesthetician from Southern California with a passion for skin care science. She’s worked in skin education, from helping others with their skin to developing products for beauty brands. Her experience extends over 15 years and an estimated 10,000 facials. She’s been using her knowledge to blog about skin and bust skin myths on her Instagram since 2016.
I love clary sage (Salvia sclarea) because of its characteristically musky yet balancing scent. It also offers a number of potential health benefits. These include:
- improving memory
- alleviating stress and calming the body
- lowering cholesterol
- reducing menstrual cramps
- improving memory
- antibacterial properties
I often put clary sage on both sides of both ankles, twice a day. This area corresponds with the acupressure points for the ovaries and uterus. I typically use my own mixture (which I also add to my diffuser at home), which is easy to make:
- 5 mL roller bottle for essential oils
- clary sage essential oil
- fractionated coconut oil
- Add 25 drops of clary sage essential oil and fractionated coconut oil to bottle. Roll on your body and enjoy!