The Healing Power of Herbs
Herbalism is the oldest form of medicine known to humankind and our knowledge of the healing power of herbs has been accumulated over thousands and thousands of years.
People from all cultures explored nature surrounding them in search of food and medication, often discoveries were made through experimentation, trance, journeying and observation to see what was good and what was bad for the human body.
Striving to stay healthy in the face of chronic stress, pollution and disease, more and more people are taking charge of their health with herbs. Health-care practitioners are increasingly using herbs and other natural therapies alongside modern treatment, with a renewed understanding of the body’s own power to heal. The science of herbal healing uses herbs as sources of chemicals that modify known physiological processes that are altered in disease states.
Herbs can be obtained from various sources. Culinary herbs, fresh and dried can be bought from most supermarkets, try and buy organic if possible to avoid pesticides and other foreign chemicals. There are many wonderful specialized herbs shops like Neal’s Yard remedies or some Chinese herbal shops. Herbs can also be found in capsule form from most heath stores. Herbs can be taken fresh, in teas, in decoctions or concentrated tinctures.
Below is a short list of a few herbs that can be taken for certain common ailments.
Strengthening the Immune System
- Echinacea root stimulates the immune system and strengthens a weakened one. It is most efficient if taken for short periods of time as the seasons are changing.
- Siberian Ginseng stimulates the immune system and fights fatigue and stress. Tablets are available in most health stores.
The Respiratory System and Common Colds
- Garlic and Thyme are a great combination to reduce inflammation and act as a natural antibiotic. Drink as a decoction or tea.
Pine is a powerful antiseptic for the lungs. Use as an inhalation in a bowl of steaming water.
- The Digestive System
- Chamomile or peppermint tea or tincture will ease nausea and heartburn. Peppermint should be avoided when pregnant.
- Dandelion root is excellent aid for water retention and constipation.
- Nettle and Milk Thistle can be taken for gallstones.
The Nervous System, anxiety, stress, insomnia
- Lavender, Lemon Verbena and Lemongrass make delicious teas that will relax and ease symptoms.
- Burn Cedar Wood oil, Lavender oil or Sage at home or place a few drops by your pillow for a good nights sleep.
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