The Herb Comparison Guide

When it comes to herbs, there are a few key things to consider. This guide will go over some of the most important factors to take into consideration when making …

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Written by: Daniel Powers, MS
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When it comes to herbs, there are a few key things to consider. This guide will go over some of the most important factors to take into consideration when making herb comparisons.

Herbal medicine is a complex topic that is constantly evolving. As such, it can be difficult to keep up with the latest research. This guide will provide an overview of the key things to consider when comparing herbs.

Herbs can differ in a number of ways, including:

  • potency
  • user compliance
  • environmental factors
  • safety and side effects

We’ll look at these below, as well as provide links to our popular herbal comparison articles.

herb comparison guide

What to Look for When Comparing Herbs?

When it comes to herbs, there are a few key things to compare.


How potent is the herb? This is important to consider because it can affect how effective the herb is. Some herbs require large doses, while others need to be taken in tiny amounts.

User Compliance:

How easy is it to take a herb? For instance, some herbs come only in tincture form and have an unpleasant, bitter taste. These types of herbs can be difficult to take on a regular basis. You may find yourself looking for an herb with similar benefits that’s easier to take.

Our hope is to provide clarity on these types of matters and provide you with the best alternative.


Some herbs have side effects that can be unpleasant. In this case, is there a similar herb that provides the same benefits without the side effects?

Environmental Safety:

Many herbs are at risk of over-harvesting. In this case, it’s best to find an alternative that has less environmental risk associated with it.

Common Herb Comparisons:

Below are links to our popular herbal comparison articles.

We have broken these down by herb. For a quick way to see if we’ve written about the herbs that you’re interested in, use “ctrl+f” on PC (or “command + f” on Mac) to search this page for your herb of interest.

American Ginseng (Panax spp.)

American Ginseng vs. Ashwagandha

American Ginseng vs. Asian Ginseng

American Ginseng vs. Eleuthero

American Ginseng vs. Ginger

American Ginseng vs. Maca

American Ginseng vs. Rhodiola

American Ginseng vs. Shilajit

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)

Ashwagandha vs. Cistanche

Ashwagandha vs. Eleuthero

Ashwagandha vs. Ginseng

Ashwagandha vs. Holy Basil

Ashwagandha vs. L-Theanine

Ashwagandha vs. Maca

Ashwagandha vs. Melatonin

Ashwagandha vs. Rhodiola

Ashwagandha vs. Shilajit

Ashwagandha vs. St. John’s Wort

Ashwagandha vs. Tongkat Ali

Ashwagandha vs. Valerian Root

Asian Ginseng (Panax ginseng)

Asian Ginseng vs. American Ginseng

Asian Ginseng vs. Ginger

Asian Ginseng vs. Maca

Asian Ginseng vs. Rhodiola

Asian Ginseng vs. Shilajit

Boswellia (Boswellia serrata)

Boswellia vs. Turmeric

Cistanche (Cistanche herba)

Cistanche vs. Ashwagandha

Cistanche deserticola vs. Cistanche tubulosa

Cistanche vs. Shilajit

Cistanche vs. Tongkat Ali

Eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus)

Eleuthero vs. Ashwagandha

Eleuthero vs. Ginseng

Fadogia (Fadogia agrestis)

Fadogia agrestis vs. Tongkat Ali

Ginger (Zingiber officinale)

Ginger vs. Ginseng

Ginger vs. Turmeric

Holy Basil (Ocimum tenuiflorum)

Holy Basil vs. Ashwagandha

Lavender (Lavadula angustifolia)

Lavender vs. Rosemary

Maca (Lepidium meyenii)

Maca vs. Ashwagandha

Maca vs. Tongkat Ali

Raw Maca vs. Gelatinized Maca

Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata)

Passionflower vs. Valerian Root

Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea)

Rhodiola vs. Ashwagandha

Rhodiola vs. Ginseng

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)

Rosemary vs. Lavender

Sea Moss (Chondrus crispus)

Sea Moss vs. Shilajit

Shilajit (Asphaltum punjabianum)

Shilajit vs. Ashwagandha 

Shilajit vs. Cistanche

Shilajit vs. Sea Moss

St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum)

St. John’s Wort vs. Ashwagandha

Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia)

Tongkat Ali vs. Ashwagandha

Tongkat Ali vs. Cistanche

Tongkat Ali vs. Fadogia agrestis

Tongkat Ali vs. Maca

Turmeric (Curcuma longa)

Turmeric vs. Boswellia

Turmeric vs. Ginger

Valerian Root (Valeriana officinalis)

Valerian Root vs. Ashwagandha

Valerian Root vs. Melatonin

Valerian Root vs. Passionflower


Although many herbs have very similar health benefits, there are just as many differences that you should be aware of so that you can be educated in your decisions and add the herbs most beneficial to your health and lifestyle.

As always, it is best to check with your health care practitioner before making any changes to your diet or adding any new supplements.

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About Daniel Powers, MS

Daniel has a master's degree in herbal science from the Maryland University of Integrative Health. He has a passion for herbal medicine and how it can be used to support everyday health & wellness.

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