H is for Herbs

Every so often I like to focus on a novel way of introducing clients and blog readers to herbs. Some time ago I devised a method that is fun, interesting and rather systematic. It’s about educating the wider public and readership about herbs and it involves simply taking a letter of the alphabet and giving you a clear and clean rundown of the herbs under that letter, their properties, uses and their benefits to you.

My firm belief is herbs can form an important component of a natural therapies and natural health lifestyle approach and if used with respect, guidance and care, may be able to help you improve whatever ailments or conditions may plague you. They are a subtle form of medicinal solution for the most part, and they may work slowly and over time, so do not just expect to take one dose and experience some kind of miraculous “cure!”

Your alternative practitioner or naturopath may work with just one or a number of different herbal remedies modalities. Some of the most popular – as well as those that are actively utilised here at A Natural Self Clinic – are Homeopathy and Ayurveda, as well as Back Flower Remedies and Traditional Chinese Medicine.

So for today, here is a brief list of some herbs beginning with the letter “A” that may just help you on your natural remedy journey.

Aloe – This herb is now grown widely in many gardens in Australia. The slimy pulp of this succulent contains quite a few phytochemicals including betacarotene, lignins, amino acids and vitamins from the A,B,C and E groups.  It is an astringent and also exceptionally good as a sunburn or wound healer. Rub the pulp on the affected area. It is also good for various skin conditions.

Anise – Also contains phytochemicals such as eugenol as well as calcium, magnesium and iron.  It helps to disperse mucous and is excellent for sinus problems and sinus congestion.

Astragalus – contains fatty acids and other nutrients such as magnesium, zinc and potassium. Astragalus helps to boost the immune system in a generalized way and also facilitates healthy sweat cycles and increases in energy. It may also speed up healing. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, Astragalus is referred to as huang qi.

Ashwaganda Root – This herb is frequently used in Ayurvedic Medicine. “It is also known as Indian Ginseng…and comes from the Nightshade family.”[1] It contains alkaloids andamino acids as well as choline. Ashwaganda is said to do wonders for the nervous system. It maintains a balance to prevent and circumvent stress issues and problems and helps you to maintain appropriate levels of vitamin C in your body.

So take a peek at herbs. Do some of your own research on them or ask a natural health practitioner for more information about them. They are one of nature’s wonders.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/Withania_somnifera