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Herbal Treatments using Black Pepper

Black pepper is perhaps one the most valued plants on Earth; its beneficial uses date back to thousands of years ago. The flowering vine is native to India and is cultivated for its fruit, known as a peppercorn, when dried. To this day, black pepper is the world’s most traded spice. In the past it has been used as a form of money; nowadays, it is used to enhance the flavor of dishes, and more importantly, as a natural remedy for various ailments individuals suffer from.

Black pepper has long since been used in Ayurvedic, Chinese and other Eastern medicines. With the ever growing community of individuals experimenting with natural remedies, black pepper would be a spice no one would want to miss out on.

The following are some of the most frequent herbal remedies that consist of black pepper.

Aid Digestion

Hydrochloric acid is necessary for the digestion of food and proteins. When an individual’s body does not produce enough hydrochloric acid, the food may sit in the stomach for an excessive amount of time. This could cause the individual to experience indigestion or heartburn. Additionally, it may pass to the intestines where bacteria use it as a food source. This bacteria can produce irritation, gas, cramping, diarrhea or constipation. The properties found in black pepper stimulate the taste buds which then signal the stomach to increase the secretion of hydrochloric acid; thus improving the digestion of food and can help eliminate irritation or gas.

Sore Gums

Black pepper, typically the essential oil, can be rubbed onto sore gums to help with pain and inflammation.

Joint and Muscle Pain

Black pepper paste or oil can be used on joints and muscles to reduce pain and swelling. Individuals suffering from rheumatoid arthritis can greatly benefit from this herbal treatment.

Reduces Phlegm

When consumed, black pepper reduces phlegm buildup in individuals and is especially beneficially for those with chronic bronchitis or asthma.

Severe Itching

Black pepper can be applied externally to areas of the body affected by severe itching, allergic reactions, or eczema.


Individuals who may have a cough or cold can make a warm drink consisting of black pepper and water. This can open up the nasal passage while relieving pain and redness in the throat.


Black pepper can mixed with water and applied to a clean face to dry it up any acne breakouts.

Herbal Recipes Using Black Pepper

While black pepper can be used as an herbal treatment by itself, it can also be mixed with other aliments to increase its healing potential, make it easier to ingest, or both. The following recipes have been used by Ayurvedic or naturopathic healers throughout the world.

Recipe Toothache or Gum Pain

tsp of black pepper powder
tsp of clove essential oil

Mix the two ingredients and rub on affected areas in the mouth to relieve pain and inflammation.

Recipe for Cold or Cough

½ tsp of black powder
½ tsp of fresh ground ginger
1 tsp of honey
1 cup of warm water

Mix all 4 ingredients together and slowly sip.

Recipe for Muscle and Joint Pain

1 tsp of black pepper
1 tsp of cumin
1 tsp of ground ginger- fresh if possible
2 tbsp of mustard oil- coconut or vegetable oil can be substituted

Mix ingredients together and apply to the affected area. Essential oils can replace the powdered spices; if this is desired, use ½ tsp of each spice, add to a small reusable bottle or container, and add approximately 5 tbsp of mustard or coconut oil. Petroleum jelly can be used instead of the mustard or coconut oil to make a nice massage balm.