heat and herbal resources

Violet flower

This page is under construction! The purpose of this page is to review herbs that are helpful in heatwaves, specifically in terms of thermal support (e.g. cooling herbs) as well as addressing physical/mental sequelae of heat.


Spice Spotlight: Sumac. Spice House website, accessed March 10, 2024.

McDermott, Annette. “What is Shatavari and How is it Used?” Medline, July 24, 2020. [Accessed March 11, 2024]


Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus)

Alok, Shashi, et al. “Plant profile, phytochemistry and pharmacology of Asparagus racemosus (Shatavari): A review.” Asian Pacific journal of tropical disease 3.3 (2013): 242-251.

Sharma, Ajitha, and Devasya Narayana Sharma. “A comprehensive review of the pharmacological actions of Asparagus racemosus.” Am. J. Pharm. Tech. Res 7.1 (2017).

Singh, Gireesh K., et al. “Antidepressant activity of Asparagus racemosus in rodent models.” Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior 91.3 (2009): 283-290. [Rat study.]

[Methanolic extract of roots of Asparagus racemosus] has significant antidepressant activity and this effect is probably mediated through the serotonergic and the noradrenergic systems and augmentation of antioxidant defenses.

Singh, Neha, et al. “Adaptogenic property of Asparagus racemosus: Future trends and prospects.” Heliyon (2023).

Asparagus racemosus belongs to Asparagaceace family is the well-documented adaptogen cited in the ancient texts namely, Ayurvedic, Greek, and Chinese medicine system. The whole plant possesses pleiotropic therapeutic activity, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, neuroprotective, nootropic, antidepressant, etc., without showing any remarkable side effects. The literature review has also suggested that A. racemosus administration at varied levels alleviates depression by modulating the HPA axis, increasing BDNF levels, and monoaminergic and GABAergic neurotransmission.

Sumac (Rhus coriaria)

Batiha, Gaber El-Saber, et al. “Rhus coriaria L.(Sumac), a versatile and resourceful food spice with cornucopia of polyphenols.” Molecules 27.16 (2022): 5179.

Jafarpour, Amirhosein, Masoumeh Akhlaghi, and Manoochehr Amin Amlashi. “The effect of Sumac on cardiometabolic parameters in adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.” Frontiers in Nutrition 11 (2024): 1305024.

Wood, Matthew. The Indispensable Drying Remedy — Sumac. Matthew Wood Institute of Herbalism, Aug. 25, 2023. [Accessed March 12, 2024.]

The skin is also affected, and a capital indication is ‘excessive sweating and peeing.’ In other cases, the skin or lungs or digestive tract is dried out, yet the kidneys or some channels are losing fluids.

Za’atar spice recipe.


Rhus trilobata (skunkbush) sumac by herbalist Robyn Klein

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