From eating flower petals to adding essential oils to your foods, there are many ways to get the healing benefits of herbs into your diet. Did you know fresh pineapple contains live enzymes that help your body to heal after surgery? Did you know that sometimes massage can be harmful or even life-threatening? This page is a hodgepodge of tips about everything from herbal honey to rancid meats.
Many flowers can be eaten! Borage, rosemary, calendula, chives, onion tops, dandelion, clover, fennel, geranium, nasturtium, rose, and violet petals make colorful additions to salads. Try adding them to cocktails, lemonade, and tea for taste and presentation.
Some essential oils can be added to food but may evaporate when heated. Try adding one drop of neroli to fresh whipped cream. It’s delicious on chocolate pudding! Other essential oils that may be used in small amounts for flavoring include anise essential oil, rose essential oil, geranium essential oil, mint essential oil, ginger essential oil, clove essential oil, and rosemary essential oil. Use only one drop or the taste might be bitter. Some essential oils should never be taken internally so do your research!
Fresh culinary herbs make healthy additions to the diet. Try bay, oregano, rosemary, or savory on beef. Use anise, caraway, cumin, parsley, rosemary, or thyme on pork. Add basil, rosemary, tarragon, and dill to chicken and fish. In days before refrigeration, meat that smelled “off” was wrapped in layers of green herbs such as basil and rosemary before cooking. The herbs saved many hungry people from food poisoning by drawing out and neutralizing rancid toxins.
Herbs, fruits, and vegetables can help provide optimal healing after trauma, operations, and dental surgeries. One week before planned surgery, eat a healthy diet of fresh vegetables, dried beans, whole grains, fresh garlic, and a whole fresh pineapple. Pineapples cost less than $5.00 and will give your body the enzymes it needs for speedy healing. Pineapples contain bromelain which stops inflammation, fights infection, and shortens recovery time. Also, during the week before your surgery take a teaspoon of grape seed oil or other OPC (a flavonoid derived from grape seeds and pine bark), get plenty of Vitamin C (citrus or rose hips), B vitamins (like wheat germ), and beta carotene (carrots, sweet potatoes) daily. Cut out grease, high fat dairy, and sweets. Even if not undergoing surgery, try the above directions for one week and see how you feel.
Massage helps the body to relax and heal. Massage is a wonderful tool, but there are times when it is not appropriate. Never massage a person that has a fever. Never massage the abdomen of anyone with high blood pressure (or ulcers). Do not massage the legs of anyone with varicose veins, diabetes, phlebitis, or blood vessel problems. Massage no closer than six inches on either side of bruises, cysts, skin breaks, or broken bones. Massage people with swollen limbs gently. If in doubt, contact a professional!
Synergy is often used in herbal medicine. An example is ginseng and licorice. These herbs are good to use individually, but together they offer exceptional benefits. Combined, ginseng and licorice balance body sugar and increase immunity with amazing results. Many factors work together to form good synergy in our lives. Good diet and regular exercise, aromatherapy and massage, and prayer and meditation are all good examples.
* Bromelain supplements may affect heart rate. Never add "absolute" essential oils to food or take internally. Absolute essential oils are processed differently than other essential oils. Always consult with a healthcare professional before using any herbal remedy especially if pregnant, nursing, or taking other medicines.
"The only way to really learn about herbal medicine is to touch and smell herbs, taste them, use them daily, and grow them if possible. Herbal medicine is a way of life. It is not a quick fix." ... Janice Boling, herbalist, web designer, writer, photographer
* Note - the information on this website has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
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