The Forest: How to Heal & Regenerate Health

A guide for healing and regenerating health in The Forest

In a game like this, you’re bound to end up needing some medical aid to get you through another day or even a group of cannibals. Healing is a significant part of The Forest, and the game doesn’t show you how to do it properly. That’s why we’re here to help.

Regenerating your health is fairly simple, and it requires you to take advantage of the many consumable items that are located around The Forest. Some consumables are better than others, and today we’ll show you the best ones for recovering your health and how to go about obtaining them. 

These are the best consumables for strictly health regeneration: 

  • Health Mix: +50 HP
  • Health Mix+: +100 HP
  • Meds: +100 HP

Scavaging for Meds

Meds would be your best choice at the beginning of the game because you can find them in suitcases around the plane and peninsula. 

Other consumables don’t really regenerate a lot of health but are still worth noting: 

  • Fresh Meat from bigger animals: +20 HP or +7 HP in Hard Survival
  • Snacks: +5 HP
  • Fresh Small Meat: +6 HP or +3 HP in Hard Survival
  • Fresh Oysters: +3 HP
  • Coneflower: +10 HP
  • Booze: +15 HP
  • Aloe Vera: +2 HP

It is also possible to regenerate health by eating stews or even sleeping. However, making a stew is a hassle in and of itself and is mainly meant to fulfill your caloric needs. On the other hand, you can’t sleep while cannibals and mutants surround you.

Crafting Health Mix

Even though Meds seem like the best option for healing, they’re a limited resource and can only be found, not crafted with renewable materials. In that case, Herbal Medicine would be your most reliable and efficient way to heal.

You’ll need to find and combine the following herbs to craft a piece of Health Mix: 

  • Aloe 
  • Marigold

Creating Health Mix

You can also choose to craft Health Mix+. This more potent mix regenerates as much health as Meds do, but it requires you to add a Coneflower to the recipe shown previously.

Creating Health Mix+

Gathering herbs

This is the tricky part about healing and crafting a health mix. You’re bound to run out of Meds at one point, and you’re going to need to divert your time to finding herbs for medicinal mixes.

Hunting for Herbs can sometimes be frustrating, as it’s rare to find a larger quantity of herbs at one single location. Having to travel around the map to find these herbs is a strenuous task, especially when your health is depleted to the point where you can’t risk an expedition.  

Aloe

Aloe is located all over the peninsula, and consuming it can cure infections. With that being said, it’s by far the most difficult plant to find. Spotting it in regions with overgrown vegetation is even more challenging.

Harvesting Aloe

You’re guaranteed to spend a lot of time looking for it, but once you find a good amount, you’ll presumably have enough seeds to plant in your garden. People have speculated that you can find it more frequently around ponds and rivers, but this hasn’t been confirmed.

Marigold

This is another herb found all over most of the peninsula. It’s a distinct herb because of its bright orange flowers, so you should be able to spot it easily in the wild. Unlike Aloe and Coneflower, this herb can’t drop seeds. 

Harvesting Marigold

The good thing about this plant is that a large cluster of it spawns near the ‘Tree of Life’ landmark. This landmark is located right next to the Yacht

Coneflower 

Similar to Marigold, Coneflowers can be found in most parts of the peninsula. It can also drop seeds, allowing you to collect a fair amount and then plant them in your garden.

Harvesting Coneflower

Coneflower is also crucial in crafting energy mixes. Energy mixes restore stamina, and they are considered a must for any boss fight or cave expedition. 

How health works in The Forest

As we all know, health in this game is displayed via the very apparent and distinct red bar on the HUD. It doesn’t directly show you the exact percentage of health you currently have, but it still does a great job of indicating how close to death or health you are. 

If your health gets below ten health points, you will begin to enter what’s called the ‘Grey Zone.’ This could be described as entering a dire state of survival, and as soon as you’re in it, your player will receive the following effects:

  • You experience an adrenaline rush that recovers half of your missing stamina in one second.
  • You deal 30% more damage with any chosen melee weapon
  • The ability to overcome a hit that should’ve killed you 
  • Your health will start to regenerate to about ten health points so that you can get out of the ‘Grey Zone’
  • Blocking is less effective, and blocking with a Katana or Machete in this state will most likely result in death.
  • Your vision will turn grey.

The Forest - Grey Zone

Even though it isn’t necessary, a feature like the ‘Grey Zone’ really helps newer players survive the incessant patrols that befall them earlier in the game. It’s also quite realistic, given how potent adrenaline is in real life.

Armor

Logically, we’d do anything to stay at a functioning amount of health, and even though the ‘Grey Zone’ offers a wide variety of buffs, we wouldn’t recommend relying on it. What you should rely on instead is armor. As soon as you’ve settled down into your makeshift base, we would highly recommend crafting yourself an additional layer of protection. 

Bone Armor in The Forest

Armor acts as a secondary health bar that repels any incoming damage, and there are a few different types of armor that are worth looking into:

  1. Bone Armor 
  2. Creepy Armor
  3. Stealth Armor
  4. Lizard Skin

We won’t delve too deep into each type of armor, but the most notable ones here are the Bone and Creepy Armor sets. Bone Armor is your best choice for the early-mid game section of your playthrough – it’s fairly easy to craft and does a solid job at protecting you from various threats. Creepy Armor offers double the protection of Bone Armor, but it can only be acquired by skinning dangerous mutants.

You can equip up to 10 pieces of armor at once, and each piece of armor adds a certain percent of damage resistance. For example, each piece of Bone Armor adds 40 points of armor to the player, which can stack up to 400 points if ten pieces are equipped. Creepy Armor adds 80 points of armor per piece, which stacks up to 800. 

Crafting Bone Armor

Bone Armor can be crafted by combining 6 Bones and 3 Cloth in the crafting menu of your backpack. As for acquiring Creepy Armor, you will need to kill and then skin a mutant (Virginias, Armsies, Cowmen..) One thing to note is that Bone Armor significantly reduces your stealth capabilities.

Harvesting Creepy Armor from Mutants

What damages health?

A lot of things are out to harm or kill you in this game, and this includes things that are littered around the Forest. We’ve already covered the essential items and consumables that can heal you, but what about the other consumables that pose a serious threat to your health?

There are more or less two ways that you can harm yourself in this game. The first one would be to consume something harmful, which can happen to anyone stranded on an unknown peninsula. Besides that, you can also fall prey to creatures. Not to mention fire and height.

 Harmful Consumables

These are the consumables that can harm you: 

  • Spoiled Meat: -2 HP or -10 HP in Hard Survival
  • Spoiled Oysters: -2 HP or -30 HP in Hard Survival
  • Polluted Water: -1 HP or -20 HP in Hard Survival
  • Amanita & Jack Mushrooms: -2 HP or -30 HP in Hard Survival
  • Human Head, Arm, or Leg: -2 HP or -10 HP in Hard Survival
  • Snow & Twinberries: -2 HP or -30 HP in Hard Survival

You can mostly get away with trying these in any other difficulty. But, if you are playing on Hard Survival, then we’d strongly urge you to stay away from Mushrooms, Berries, and Spoiled Oysters. Hard Survival is in and of itself one of the most challenging experiences you can live through in The Forest. 

There are also other factors to consider: 

  • Fires – stumbling over your campfire isn’t a big deal, but it’s still lethal to players with low HP. 
  • Cannibals & Mutants – Cannibals are very dangerous in groups and mutants even more so. There’s also a special Fire Cannibal that can set you on fire. 
  • Animals – Crocodiles and Sharks deal 55 points of damage, with Boars only dealing 15.
  • Cold – You can lose -5 HP or -25 HP in Hard Survival per tick if you’re cold.
  • Thirst – Suffering of thirst will drain -11 HP or -28 HP in Hard Survival per tick. 
  • Starvation – Starving makes you lose -10 HP per tick on any difficulty. 
  • Falling – Always watch your step when exploring. 
  • Explosives – This is pretty self-explanatory.
  • Falling Trees – If caught under a falling tree in Hard Survival only, you’ll lose -60 HP. 
  • Falling Foundation – If you find yourself under a falling foundation as it collapses, you’re bound to lose -100 HP, making this the most lethal way to lose health.

Fighting Armsy

Once again, it’s crazy how so many things contribute to your downfall in this game. You’re bound to encounter at least one of the issues listed above, but there are plenty of things that can also mend your wounds. 

Game over

You’d think that the first time you die, you’d have to start over or load your latest save. But, this isn’t the case in a single-player playthrough. If you succumb to cannibals or other elements, you’ll trigger a cutscene where you can see two cannibals carrying you somewhere.

Once awake, you’ll find that you’re hanging upside down in a cave. You can proceed to cut yourself free, but you’ll soon realize that nearly all of your stats are at a dangerously low level. This is the game’s attempt to give you a second chance, and you can abuse this system by waiting two in-game days before dying again to reset it.

Death Cut Scene

That cutscene won’t trigger if you got killed and eaten by a shark for apparent reasons.

Keeping that health bar full

It’s imperative to maintain an essential amount of health, and you should always focus on gathering the resources required to craft herbal remedies. After all, healing in this game is a simple yet nuanced system that stands between you and the harsh realities of this peninsula. With this guide behind you, you should now be equipped with multiple methods for how to heal in The Forest.

If you’re interested in a general summary of the mechanics and features that The Forest offers, be sure to check our Beginner’s Guide, which will attend to your every basic need.

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About Digital Ghost

Dg is the founder and co-owner of Corrosion Hour, a niche gaming community established in 2016 focusing on the survival game RUST. He is an active and contributing member of numerous other RUST communities. As a community leader and server owner for over 15 years, he spends much of his time researching and writing guides about survival games, covering topics such as server administration, game mechanics, and community growth.

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