Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis) is a perennial and a member of the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae). The plant grows best in the shade and has small raspberry-like fruits.
Goldenseal roots are modernly promoted as dietary supplements for colds and other respiratory infections as well as digestive issues. Historically, eastern Native tribes used goldenseal for skin disorders, ulcers, fevers, and other conditions. The Cherokee use a root concoction as a tonic and wash for inflammations and infections. They believe the roots could treat cancer, dyspepsia, and general issues. Nationally, the plant is used to control muscle spasms, treat cancer, increase blood pressure, help gastrointestinal issues, and manage menstrual pain and heavy cycles.