OUR GREAT MINDS

    by Tina Olivero

    Herbs That Heal: Grow Them In Your Office Garden

    Foods that truly support your health are: real, unprocessed, fresh, and without harmful pesticides and chemicals.  And where’s the best place to get those foods?  Right in your own back yard if you have the space to grow them.  And these days, we are getting so creative with our living spaces we are growing plants very successfully in our work spaces.  What about the possibility of having an endless supply of healing herbs right in your office?  Would that be a healthy way to live?  Pick your herbs and add to your water tinctures, sandwiches, and teas throughout the day?  Sounds right to me!

    Herbs have multiple healing properties for the body and provide you with better health, depending on the herbs. In this article, we’re taking the pro-active approach to health. Rather than healing sickness which is a passé form of self care, we are focusing on being pro-active and preventative with our health.

    Food is the body fuel. If the fuel we use is toxic then so are we. With this in mind, we are taking on healing herbs as an important part of our health and overall success. Consuming healing herbs is just that – ­preventative and healthy.

    When choosing herbs, do lots of research; and pick herbs that you feel are best suited for you and your health goals. To get you started here are a few garden variety healing herbs that do the body good:

    Lemon Balm

    Lemon balm in the plant world, actually means love and its healing powers are as powerful. Lemon balm is known to have antiviral properties that support renewed youth, and is effective against the herpes virus.

    Lemon balm is classified as a stimulating nerve tonic, and though it has a soothing effect on the nervous system and alleviates anxiety, it is not a simple sedative. Lemon balm is particularly recommended for nervous problems that have arisen from long-standing stress and for anxiety accompanied by headache, sluggishness, confusion, depression, and exhaustion.

    Lemon balm also alleviates stomach gas and cramps and has a general antispasmodic effect on the stomach and intestines. It also relaxes the blood vessels, which helps to reduce blood pressure.

    Peppermint

    Peppermint tea is a traditional remedy for an upset stomach or gas, because it relaxes the stomach or gut muscles. Peppermint can be taken in oil or in capsule form to help cure lethargy and offer a pick-me-up that isn’t too stimulating or irritating to the digestive tract.

    A favorite herbal medicine of the ancients, peppermint leaves have been found in Egyptian pyramids dating back to 1,000 BC. Modern scientific investigations have now confirmed that this remarkable plant has over a dozen tried and true healing properties.

    Most of the human research on peppermint thus far indicates this plant has great value in treating gastrointestinal disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome, colonic spasm, gastric emptying disorders, functional dyspepsia, infantile colic and many other ailments.

    Rosemary

    As a rich source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds, rosemary helps boost the immune system and improve blood circulation.

    Laboratory studies have shown rosemary to be rich in antioxidants, which play an important role in neutralizing harmful particles called free radicals. In Europe rosemary is often used to help treat indigestion and in Germany they use rosemary to treat dyspepsia.

    Rosemary essential oils may boost concentration
    and enhance memory. Scientists have found that rosemary is good for your brain as it contains a carnosic acid that is able to fight free radical damage in the brain.

    Ancient herbalists also recommended rosemary for headaches and it is said that rosemary’s fragrance can ward off infection. Today some people use the anti-inflammatory tannins, present in rosemary, to sooth a sore throat.

    Sage

    For the medieval herbals, sage is a cure-all that is known to give relief by healing grief, reducing fever and calming the nerves. Modern herbalists agree that the plant contains antibacterial and antiseptic properties, and may even ease hot flashes.

    Of all the culinary herbs, sage is perhaps the one with the broadest range of medicinal uses. Sage is anti-hypertensive, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-microbial; plus it helps cleanse your blood and may even prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

    Echinacea

    Herbalists use an extract of this common cold preventive to boost the immune system and the production of white blood cells. For the home garden, plant them to enjoy the gorgeous flowers and the butterflies they attract.

    Echinacea has antibiotic and anti-fungal properties. It helps prevent symptoms of colds and flu, and it limits the duration and severity of sore throats and ear and eye infections. Echinacea has also been known to relieve tonsillitis, inflamed gums and mucus problems. In addition, it reduces the symptoms of some allergies, promotes the healing of skin wounds and inflammatory conditions, such as canker sore, cuts, scrapes, boils, abscesses, and eczema.

    These herbs listed above are but a few, and the healing properties of herbs are truly endless. Start with your health goal in mind and pick your herbs from there. Additional top-of-the-list herbs include; turmeric, thyme, parsley, oregano, spearmint, ginger, garlic, fennel, dill, clove, cinnamon, cayenne and basil, and the list goes on.

    Herbs and other plants are being used for anti-aging and glowing skin results as well. The skin being the largest organ of the body, this would make perfect sense. One such company in Newfoundland, Canada, Indigenaskincare.com, harvests local plants and develops extracts utilizing indigenous botanicals for use in their skincare products. Indigena is going back to our roots, literally and figuratively – timely!

    Today we see restaurants and other businesses using herbs and plants to enhance our health. We can all do this and it will become more and more common place as we get more particular about our health and longevity.

    Create a window box, find an old abandoned room with lots of light to start your own garden, find a location where your clients go and bring them into the experience. The possibilities are endless. Check out the UrbanCultivator.net for compact indoor growing solutions that you can architect into your work setting.

    Understanding herbs and plants and their medicinal properties can be an interesting hobby that pays out in health and happiness dividends. Keeping ourselves ‘herb healthy’ gives us a foundation for strong work lives in a way that nature had intended. Happy herbing!

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