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Keep it Simple: Medicine Making with Plants


There are so many remedies I would love to share with you, however I would not want you to get hurt. At the same time, it would be a treat to impart a basic foundation for you to be preventative and support your current self-care. This is the primary goal of this communication. Diagnosis, prognosis and treatment, requires a formalized education and/or apprenticeship with supervision. Let's keep things simple, but empower you as well. Let me explain what is my training over the years.


Making medicine comes in many forms. The obvious one is your daily consumption of food. Please don't dismiss this very basic and key to your health, your resilience and your energy production. If your bloodstream is the river of your life, would you put bacon grease in its "waters," how about lots of candy or alcohol? Your body and face will show it. You've polluted that river. Only if you have good "fish" (antioxidants) swimming in that river could you mitigate the potential harm. Many of us have inherited conditions, therefore we will want to consciously add a practice that helps keep the system clean. Whether it is avoidance, additions, occasional supplementation or various therapies, we want to feel great. Study food nutrition. Check out Nutrition Data.


FOOD HARMONY

As a child my mother would not want me to drink ice water or cooling foods like cucumber when I was overheated. This may not seem logical until you imagine the state of your stomach and intestines, a very tender path of tissue. You will cramp up. She also had strong feelings about mixing dairy with watermelon, chili and high fiber, etc. There were other taboos, I will not list, as I believe these can be systematically personal. Traditional Chinese Medicine, Naturopathic and Herbalists also have their own philosophy regarding food harmony.


As a rule, I advise those with chronic digestive complaints, or those with acute indigestion, to reduce their meal spread to one or two food groups at one sitting. Eating at restaurants often causes grief because the milieu of food types are served in large quantities and severely mixed up. I always take digestive enzymes in my purse for such occasions. Habits like portion control, mindful eating, eating when calm, make a big difference. Someone asked me, "When should I eat?" You should eat when you are hungry. This is not a dumb question. Do you know the difference between the sensation of hunger and that of anxiety? For many it's a similar feeling; physically edgy vs. emotionally edgy. Get in harmony with bodily sensations and this will also translate as food harmony.


TEA DRINKING AS MEDICINE AND RITUAL

I mentioned in a blog that I was given cornsilk tea for bladder and kidney problems as a child. It brought me relief. They may or may not sell dried cornsilk for tea making, but I have seen the pill form. I have distinct memory of this healing me as a child. Obviously, you should see your doctor if you have one. there was no insurance plan for our family. Mild doses of plants, roots and herbs are a great way to learn about the effectiveness of medicine. In fact, this will begin your personal knowledge of herbs that mesh with you, without and accidental overdose. Remember unlike western medicine, it is usually mild and can take between 3 days to two weeks, for relief of a minor problem.


Dandelion root saved me one year. Over a decade ago, I learned that I could no longer digest meat and animal byproducts. I was having gallbladder attacks frequently. Since the gallbladder works with the liver, stomach and pancreas, this brought significant distress to my innards. Very painful. Eventually, I became a vegan eater, however I was struggling for half of a year. Doctors wanted to give me an antacid, that later was publicly announced to cause Alzheimers disease. Thank goodness I refused. Finally, I was referred to a Native American man, in California, who believed that my condition coincided with a strong spiritual shift in me. Was it true? He was the only one to have brought relief to the situation within 3 days. Two weeks of Dandelion Root tea, 2-3 times a day. I was feeling great again. I did, however follow his advice to remove meat and animal products from my diet. I continue to practice a dandelion root detox monthly, to this day. My gallbladder was never removed and the man became my herbal teacher thereafter.


Every morning, I ceremoniously drink a cup of black tea to start the day. My favorite is Earl Grey. Not only that, I am a tea connoisseur and drink teas from around the world with great joy. Some aged, some energizing, some calming. This ritual is excellent for those of you that do not feel comfortable being still, or "doing nothing." I believe it is important to have tools of meditation. How about tea making?


AROMATHERAPY - YOU DON'T HAVE TO GET FANCY

This is a very visual world. Our sense of smell is oddly dormant, yet we have a chance to use it for healing. Your olfactory nerve is a straight shot to your brain and can activate emotion and healing instruction very quickly. Please look at the diagram (Courtesy of Wikipedia Commons), notice that the cribriform plate (a bony cage that separates the nose from the brain.) Smelling is a very old survival sense that we do not appreciate fully. Looking at the image, it now makes sense that smelling salts might revive you from a mild slip in consciousness.

How can smelling heal us? Babies calm down with the scent of their mother. Rosemary is used for memory and alertness. There are many fragrances, odors and aromas, however you wish to address your sense of smell, that create a response from the deeper brain. Experiment and note what emotional and physical responses you have to various scents. Choose your top 3 and have them on hand. For me, I love the smell of coffee and I don't even drink it! Lavender is important to me and I grow many varieties in my garden. I also love the smell of orange rind. Essential oils can be expensive, yet they will last quite a long time. Try carrying at least one in your home apothecary. Please use them externally only, if you are not familiar with their use. Put a few drops in your bath or a couple on your temple, perhaps at the bottom of your feet. You can even create an aerosol with an empty spray bottle. You will need guidance from a schooled herbalist to use internally.


TINCTURES

Tinctures are not simple! However I post information about them, because they are sold openly and easily for anyone to grab. Concentrates are made in all cultures, albeit some are questionable medicine. For me, the internal use of tinctures and essential oils is tough medicine and can be used affectively, but also incorrectly and cause harm. In this case more is not better as these tiny bottles are an extreme concentrate. There are a few companies that label their products very well and I believe are great at helping those to self diagnose. Frankly, not everyone has good medical insurance or an attentive medical team, as was my case with my gallbladder. I was healed outside the system. Check my website, from time to time, for recommendations and ads for those companies I trust.


In the meantime, please know that tincture taking may not address the root of a problem but a symptom you decided you cannot tolerate. There is an art to diagnosis and it is difficult to be objective when it involves ourselves. Many tinctures are created with alcohol bases and may or may not be organic. this is important to realize because a tincture is an extraction. If your tincture is alcohol based that is from brandy, the grapes if not organic, will have some of those toxins and defeat the purpose. Lots to consider, this is my stance on tinctures for beginners. It can get complicated.

KEEP IT SIMPLE

I know you will want my indigenous, or favorite potent herbal remedies...I will sneak them into my blogs as this is the most responsible way to give them to you. Everything needs a backstory and slow and steady is best. Instead I hope to convey that the origin of health begins with your mind. Your thoughts.


Like many health practitioners, I agree that your level of stress, anxiety, worry, angst, etc is what is draining your good physical energy and wasting it. Instead of looking for a fast fix, look for a longterm solution to deal with the toxic hormone of mental pressure that is dragging down your entire system. The factory- that is your mind- is manufacturing what is hurting you most. Here is an example list of perspectives that I feel will damage health if uncorrected:


"If I do a certain thing, I will be successful"

"People will find me worthy if I do, say, or appear a certain way."

"More people will like me if I agree."

"If I show that I am helpful to confident people, I will be liked too."

"I am only attractive if I have a certain physique."

"If I have lots of money, people will respect me."

"I have to prove to my boss, parent, friend, lover that I am competent or good enough."

"If I am an expert at something, people will notice me."

"If I can't provide EVERYTHING for my family, I am a failure."

"If I don't pass that test I am a failure."

"I can't leave this situation or I will get very hurt." "I will never find true love."

"My life is boring."

"I am better than everyone around me."

"People are stupid."

"Humans are dark and evil."

"The world is a terrible place."

"I'm alone in this."

"No one likes me. I am unloveable."


Negativity or cynicism is very stressful. Yes, bad stuff really happens, but you ALWAYS have choices. Stand your ground. Occasionally, I will support a negative or defeated person by recommending an anti stress routine, coupled with herbs of course, to jumpstart new and dedicated habits of disciplining the mind: JOY. Peace my dear friends. BE WELL :)


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