Glossary of Herbs Therapeutic Actions

Glossary ~ Studio Botanica

Analgesic: relieves pain
Anesthetic: produces insensibility to pain
Anodyne: relieves pain
Antibacterial: kills or prevents growth of bacteria
Antidote: counteracts effect of poison
Anti-fungal: inhibits growth or multiplication of, or destroys fungi
Anti-inflammatory: reduces inflammation
Antimicrobial: helps destroy or resist pathogenic micro-organisms
Anti-rheumatic: eases inflammation and pain in joints and muscles
Antiseptic: a topical antimicrobial
Antispasmodic: relieves cramps, prevents or relaxes muscle spasms
Anti-thrombotic: reduces the formation of blood clots
Aperient: gentle laxative
Aromatic: pleasant odour, stimulates digestive system function
Astringent: contractions and firms tissue, reduces secretions & discharges
Cardiac Tonic: beneficial supportive action on heart and circulatory system
Carminative: helps to encourage better digestion
Circulatory Stimulant: improves blood flow throughout the body
Decongestant: reduces thick fluid build-up in nose, throat, sinus or chest
Demulcent: soothing to mucus membranes
Diaphoretic: induces perspiration, helps body to sweat
Emollient: softening, soothing
Expectorant: promotes mucus discharge from respiratory passages
Hemostatic: arrests blood flow
Hypolipidemic: reduce the lipid level (triglyceride and cholesterol) in the blood
Lymphatic: assists detoxifying by effect on lymph tissue. Supports immune system
Mucilage: contains gelatinous or gummy constituents
Nervine: calms nerves + supports nervous system
Nutritive: nourishes and sustains life
Parturient: hastens labour
Relaxant: relieves tension, relaxes
Rubefacient: increases superficial circulation, producing irritation
Stimulant: excites or increases vital action
Styptic: stops bleeding
Stomachic: strengthens and stimulates the stomach
Sudorific: produces perspiration
Tonic: produces permanent increase in functional tone of the system
Trophorestorative: healing + restorative action on specific organ or tissue
Vulnerary: stimulates healing of wounds


THIS is very brief. If you want more clarification,

please contact for a more in-depth explanation.

Good wishes,