The Natural Medicine Cabinet
There are many days when I get asked what is in my medicine cabinet. I usually laugh and say anyone that comes over can never decipher what anything is for. It is not full of ibuprofen, Benadryl, and Neosporin. Not that there isn’t a place for those things. Instead, it’s full of natural alternatives such as herbs, oils, supplements and homeopathic remedies.
Here are a few items I think are beneficial for anyone’s “medicine” cabinet.
Do you wonder what good alternatives, without side effects, are for your healthcare needs?
Injury or Pain:
1. Peppermint Essential Oil- This oil is anti-inflammatory and acts as an analgesic, which means it helps to cut the pain down. It is effective for muscle/tendon ache or injury, as well as, taking care of headaches fairly quickly.
2. Arnica- This herb is great for bruising, swelling, and pain relief for muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
3. Tea Tree Oil- Has excellent antiseptic properties which makes it great for wound cleaning cuts and infections.
1. Ginger Root- Ok, so you would technically keep this in your fridge and not your medicine cabinet. If you have an upset stomach, nausea, or gas you can cut a couple quarter sized pieces off the root and steep in hot water for tea. Sip and enjoy the benefits.
2. Activated Charcoal- If taken before a meal, this can help prevent those embarrassing aftermath moments of your mother-in-laws awesome beans you love.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar- Take a tablespoon of this in warm water 15-20 minutes prior to meals and you can enjoy improved digestion.
Virus & Bacteria:
1. Oil of Oregano- This is great for bacterial infection and in some cases has been shown to outperform antibiotics. It is a powerful form that should be used with care and as with most supplements with direction from a healthcare provider. An important take away is that if you use it, it is important to follow up with probiotics (and a healthcare provider).
2. Echinacea- This is one of the best known herbs for boosting the immune system. It can be taken for short periods of time, no longer than 2 weeks usually. Start taking it when you feel like something might be “coming on” and continue for a couple days. Note, that some people who have seasonal allergies, particularly to ragweed, may react to Echinacea.
3. Honey- This is one of nature’s coolest inventions. Honey can boost the immune system, work as a cough suppressant, and help fight allergies while treating the sinuses. Eat up!
Mental & Emotional Health
1. Lavender Essential Oil- A calming oil that can help reduce anger and agitation while helping produce happiness.
2. Jasmine- Said to diminish fear and sadness while increasing optimism. Can be worn as a beautiful perfume.
3. Ylang Ylang- This is my favorite oil of all time. Soothing and uplifting to the heart and your mood, this is also an amazing oil for a perfume.
4. Frankincense- This is actually made from a resin and promotes healthy comforting moods.
5. Palo Santo- Calming yet grounding this oil produces a sense of composure and evenness.
6. Chamomile- Historically used to relieve feelings of grief, anger, and discontent. This oil is soothing and has sedative qualities.
1. Valerian- Studies show this root helps you fall asleep and stay asleep.
2. Lavender- The sleep benefits of lavender come from being inhaled. The calming effect on the mind can elicit the needed relaxation a person needs to fall asleep.
3. Jasmine- Recent studies show that smelling this flower promotes restful sleep. Which means once asleep it helps you maintain a restful presence there.
4. Cedarwood- Calming and helps reduce stress, which can induce melatonin production.
5. Sandalwood- Known as a sedative and anti-anxiety oil it also induces the production of melatonin, helping your sleep cycles.
Please remember, anytime you are using herbs and oils you should consult with your healthcare provider to make sure they are appropriate for you. Pregnant and nursing women should talk to their primary care physicians before using anything.
Happy, healthy, natural healing!