Sunday, November 1, 2009

Natural Healing

It's here...the dreaded cold season.It is a time when we, again, look back to our gardens for help! Do you know what in your garden can help boost your immune system and help ward off the cold?? What about for allergies? Or curing a rash?
Herbal remedies have been around since the beginning, long before modern medicine made its debut. Obtained from plant leaves, bark, berries, and roots, they are an effective and natural way to protect you from getting sick!

A few examples now to get you started...

For the common cold...

Echinacea and Goldenseal are both immune boosters and natural antibiotics. If taken at the onset of a cold, they will hep prevent further symptoms. Commonly taken by pill or oil. (Do not take Goldenseal if you are pregnant).

Eucalyptus Oil, Rosemary Oil and Sage oil are used as an expectorant, loosening mucus, making it easier to expel from the chest. Put 5 drops in a hot bath or place 6 drops in 2 c. boiling water, place a towel over your head and inhale deeply through your nose for 5 minutes.

Ginger and Yarrow Tea are useful as well. Ginger is used to rid the body of mucus buildup in the sinuses, throat and lungs, while yarrow tea induces sweating which helps to lower fevers in colds and flu.

Red Clover blossoms steaped and used as a tea, has expectorant and anti-inflammatory properties and is effective in relieving colds and dry, unproductive coughs.

Tea Tree Oil is effective for treating sinus issues and sore throats. Use as a gargle. A little goes a long way! Add 3-6 drops to warm water and use as gargle 3 times daily.

For allergies...

Chamomile tea is used to reduce the duration of allergy attacks and also as a calming agent. Gather leaves and steap in hot water. Strain and enjoy!

Thyme leaves break up congestion, as well as clear up sinusitis, laryngitis, throat infections and symptoms of the cold and flu. Heat 1 c. water with 1 oz. thyme leaves until boiling. Breathe in steam for 15 minutes.

Burdock, horseradish, dandelion, gingko biloba, stinging nettle and many more help to alleviate allergies!
For arthritis...
Alfalfa is considered a pain reliever. It is a storehouse for minerals which are vital for bone formation.

Stinging Nettle is a rich source of iron, calcium & folic acids.

Willow bark is used to treat pain, headache, fever and athritis.

Celery seed is useful to relieve inflammation and pain.

Parsley seeds can be used to make tea for the treatment of arthritis and rheumatism.

We are just skimming the surface- There are MANY more herbs that help treat many different conditions! We encourage you to research these natural ways of healing!

Now from personal experience...

As a child, I can not tell you how many weird things I ingested, swallowed, rubbed on, inhaled, gargled, and soaked in. At the time, my brother, sister and I thought our mom was just a little crazy (okay...a lot crazy) when she would carry around extra bags on our hikes to gather tree moss or a certain type of tree bark if found, but I now give her credit for it.
The stuff actually worked.

The most memorable for me was when our kitchen morphed into a distillery. We all got a good laugh at the quantities of fir bark and vodka that ended up there. But from it was churned out a fir bark sore throat remedy that we still use to this day. (I still wonder which ingredient actually does the curing!)

Another was an alder bark salve that became very popular among my brother's college roomates. With boys you inevitably get some kind of gross fungus, in this case it was Athletes Foot. The alder bark salve was the only thing that quickly worked to clear it up! It was in high demand! We use it for all sorts of different skin issues: chapped lips, dry nose from the constant blowing of it during a cold, dry skin, etc.

My mother has always been interested and drawn to all things natural. She made a friend, Darcy Williamson, in McCall, Idaho who has a book out 'Healing Plants of the Rocky Mountains' (available in our store). It has been an invaluable volume in our library.

It's not that we never used modern medicine, but when you can gather from nature and see it working you can't help but love it! If any of you would like information about any specific health issue or herb, please leave a comment and we will post follow-ups!


1 comment:

  1. What a FABULOUS blog!! I'm so looking forward to keeping tabs on what's going on at Andrews. Love the blog! Keep it coming...... :-)