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Did you know that you have some powerful medicines right in your kitchen? Herbs and spices do more than add delicious flavors and variety to meals. They are potent natural medicines. Many herbs and spices were traditionally used to preserve food, which they do well. The same properties that keep foods from becoming rancid prevent the human body from infection, aging, and a multitude of illnesses. Let’s take a look at some common herbs that you can use to create healing medicines with.
Beyond being an essential ingredient to pizza and pesto, basil has a multitude of health benefits. It has anti-inflammatory properties which work like ibuprofen and similar drugs without causing stomach distress. It is relaxing, yet promotes alertness and concentration simultaneously. Basil promotes healthy blood sugar regulation. It has antispasmodic properties as well. Basil contains potent antioxidants which prevent aging. The herb is a concentrated source of vitamins A and C. It contains potassium, magnesium, and iron. Basil uplifts the spirit and can be used to reduce depression. Try preserving it in apple cider vinegar to have its delicious fresh green flavor and healing benefits available at any time of the year.
Don’t just use nutmeg in your eggnog. Add it to warm milk at bedtime to promote a good night’s sleep. It relieves stress and anxiety. Nutmeg has been used for thousands of years to promote brain health. It contains several trace minerals. Nutmeg prevents bacterial growth and is used to soothe sore muscles. Nutmeg is generally well tolerated, but should not be used medicinally by pregnant women as early labor may result.
Garlic lowers the risk of heart disease. It increases levels of healthy cholesterol while decreasing harmful cholesterol deposits. It lowers triglyceride levels, which are indicative of circulation problems. Use garlic to treat high blood pressure and hardening of the arteries. It reduces leg cramps caused by poor circulation. If garlic causes burping, crush a peeled clove and put it in your shoe for about one half of an hour. The healing properties of garlic are rapidly absorbed through your skin and travel throughout your body. Garlic is one of the most powerful herbs available to treat infections. It can be used for any infection. Garlic is especially helpful for infected wounds and respiratory infections. Garlic prevents unhealthy blood clots from forming. It improves circulation to every part of the body, including the brain. Because of its multiple benefits to the circulation, garlic can prevent stroke and heart attacks. Garlic elevates moods and reduces inflammation. It should not be used medicinally by people who are taking pharmaceutical blood thinners. Garlic contains sulfur and iron. It can be used to get rid of intestinal worms also. Onions, shallots, leeks, and chives work similarly to garlic, but not as powerfully. All contain similar constituents, but to a lesser degree.
Ginger gets the blood flowing. It prevents blood clot formation and helps strengthen the heart. It aids the function of cardiac muscle tissue. Ginger reduces high blood pressure.
Ginger relieves nausea and motion sickness and morning sickness. It helps relieve arthritic pain.
Ginger is beneficial for the entire body, especially the circulatory, respiratory, reproductive, and digestive systems. It can relieve painful menstrual cramps when taken as a tea or used as a warm compress. To make a ginger compress, make a strong tea. Dip a soft cloth in it and apply the warm cloth to the painful area. Cover with a warm towel. Repeat as needed.
Fennel relieves gas and abdominal distress. A nursing mother can drink fennel tea to provide relief for a colicky baby. It is very safe. Fennel can also be made into a cough syrup by mixing it with warm honey or maple syrup.
Horseradish has been used for hundreds of years to relieve maladies of the respiratory and urinary systems. It enhances immune function as well. Horseradish contains vitamin C and has been used to treat depression and cancer. Horseradish contains expectorant, decongestant, and antibacterial properties. Use horseradish to relieve respiratory and urinary tract infections. Horseradish reduces fever.
Do not use horseradish medicinally for children under age four or for people with stomach ulcers, pregnant, or nursing.
Sage is a terrific remedy for sore throat. It works especially well when combined with echinacea. It calms coughs and can relieve laryngitis. It can calm a hacking cough. Sage is antibacterial and has health benefits for the entire body. It promotes circulatory wellness. Women, who suffer from hot flashes find relief by nibbling on a couple of fresh sage leaves daily or by drinking sage tea. About one quart of lukewarm or cool tea must be consumed daily. It takes a couple of weeks for the tea become effective, but it is one of the best methods to relieve hot flashes and night sweats. Use 1-2 teaspoons of dried sage per cup or 1 tablespoon of fresh per cup to make a medicinal tea.
These are just a handful of the powerful herbs that you can use to make your own homemade remedies to prevent and relieve illness.