Today more and more people are turning to natural remedies. Why? Possibly we are not sure if our medicines will be paid for by the national insurance bodies, or possibly we are looking more and more into alternative remedies to help cure our ailments. This is yet one more reason to turn to nature for our health needs.
Herbal Medicine is a holistic approach to health using remedies made from plants to treat disorders and maintain good health. Every culture throughout history has used herbal products to both prevent and treat various diseases.
Herbal medicines are used to support the body’s own healing mechanisms in order to restore a balanced state of health. They have limited, if any side effects and are becoming a popular way of improving our own quality of life. Herbal medicine can help all age groups and have been used to treat endless problems.
Examples where they can be used include stress, anxiety, digestive problems, insomnia, headaches, women’s and men’s health problems, immune problems, allergies, auto-immune conditions, cystisis and urinary problems, recurrent respiratory infections and many more conditions.
If you are fortunate to be in an area where there is an abundance of herbs growing naturally you can prepare herbs in a variety of ways. Well known favourites such as St John’s Wart (Hypericum perforatum), Sage (Salvia officinalis) and Marigold (Calendula arvensis) and Thyme are therapeutically important herbs that can be prepared as infused oils, ointment and creams for external use or as teas and tinctures used internally.
How to Make Your Infused Oils for Herbal Medicine
Collect the herb of your choice and place in an empty jar. Pour olive oil in the jar, enough to cover the herb, and place on a window sill in the sun. Leave for three weeks, shaking the jar each day. After three weeks, strain through a cheese cloth into a clean jar. Your infused oil is now ready for use. Store in a cool dark place.
How to Make an Ointment for Natural Remedies
Heat 100ml of infused oil in a double boiler on low heat. Add 14g of bees wax. Keep in the boiler until the wax has melted. Pour into a clean cream pot and allow to cool. The ointment can then be applied to the skin. Herbs such as Calendula and St John’s Wart are anti-inflammatory and good for superficial burns.
How to Make a Tincture Using Herbal Medicine
First collect olive leaves and place in a jar. Cover with some alcohol and store in a dark place for 3 weeks shaking the contents each day. After three weeks, strain the solution through a cheese cloth into a clean jar, storing in a dark bottle in a cupboard. Up to 5ml of this tincture can be taken daily. This has been known to lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Alternatively, a decoction can be made by boiling the olive leaves in water for 20 minutes. This however will need to be consumed within 2 days.