The Top 10 Herbs for Healthy Living
Herbs are just so amazing. I understand why people, like myself, swear by them. Use of medicinal herbs is a natural, safe, and effective way to supplement your healing. Herbs can be used to prevent and treat disease, but they also can be used every day just because you want to live healthily.
Here are my Top 10 Herbs for Healthy Living.
For everyday use, sage's antibacterial and astringent effects are necessary. The image below is of my personal sage plant. You can wait for some of the leaves to fall off and dry or you can pick a few, and allow them to dry before making an infusion for drinking or a face or hair rinse. Sage is great for self-care because it helps reduce sweating, stop itchy scalp, and slow graying of hair. For older women, sage can help to balance hormones in the case of hot flashes. Sage has anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects that help to reduce the risk of acute disease.
Click here to get more information about sage and its spiritual benefits.
For everyday use, Holy Basil is an aromatically uplifting herb. Its smell will fill a room with warmth and joy. It's warming energy also translates to its ability to help lower stress by working through the heart. With high sugar levels in almost all foods these days, diabetes is on the rise. Holy Basil can help to regulate your blood sugar levels and treat hyperglycemia. This image is also of my personal plant, and its leaves, stems and (eventual) flowers can be used in infusions or tinctures (click to learn best practices to make your own infusions/decoctions).
For everyday use, Peppermint oil can be used as a carminative, relaxant, and pain reliever. As a digestive wellness coach, I can't express enough how important it is to have proper digestion.
Peppermint can really do wonders for children and adults when it comes to pain due to gas and bloating; it can also help with morning sickness, headaches, cramping, and asthma. My personal peppermint plant is below. It's one of the easiest plants to grow, by the way.
For everyday use, nettle is the ultimate herb. It is a complete body beneficial herb. The leaves and roots can be used as medicine. Not only is it used for illness, but also as a substitute for women's one-a-day vitamins. Nettle is great for cleansing and protecting the body from harmful toxins in food and in the environment. Speaking of the environment, it can help to relieve seasonal allergies, and is even safe for children to use. If you feel weak or burned out, nettle can help to boost your energy levels by balancing your metabolic state.
For everyday use, alfalfa sprouts and the herb itself (mature plant) is also an amazing multi-vitamin substitute. The beautiful purple flowers on the herb are great for bringing color and happiness (in the form of buzzing bees) into your garden or home. The seeds can be sprouted quite easily, and grown outdoors in a sprouting jar, pot or garden. The herb itself is considered a superfood. It has so many vitamins and minerals that will supplement your daily nutrition needs easily and effectively. Just making a simple tea, or getting the powdered form of the herb to add to your morning glass of lemon water makes it simple.
For everyday use, cayenne in moderation is good for everyone. Even if you know you don't enjoy spicy foods, cayenne is necessary for decreasing inflammation and free radicals as well as reducing heart attack risk. If you always have cold hands and feet, or are quick to grab a sweater (like I am) your spirit may appreciate cayenne's ability to warm your body. Cayenne also supports digestion and is where the reduction of inflammation can be useful. Just be careful when it comes to treating ulcers or other irritated tissues. Keep away from your eyes - I will only warn you once 🙂
For everyday use, it is good to have a live aloe vera plant in your home or garden. Maybe even several. The raw aloe vera plant gel can be used for first aid. If you have children, this is a must for burns, cuts, bruises, and scrapes. Aloe vera enhances the immune system and not only treats skin flare ups that come from eczema or psoriasis, but also internal flare-ups in individuals with irritable bowel syndrome or ulcerative colitis. The internal flesh of the plant is a laxative, so be careful with dosage.
For everyday use, licorice may not always be on everyone's list, however, in moderation, and with consistent on an off use, it can do wonders for your stress levels. Licorice is also anti-inflammatory, but more importantly, it can be used in the case of smoking addiction or chronic stress and anxiety. It's soothing and calming energy is useful for people who are under stress, which takes a toll on the liver and kidneys. It is a balancing herb that can be chewed, made into a decoction, or tincture. Licorice is in the top 10 herbs for an everyday healthy living list because it is unmatched when it comes to protection from inflammation damage whether it be in your joints, eyes, skin, gut, or lungs. I put it in almost all of my formulas.
For everyday use, ginger is a tried a true miracle herb. It has so many benefits (as do all the others, I know I keep saying that), but the main ones are heart and circulation support and digestive soothing. Emotionally, if you are uneasy or going through a hard time in your life, ginger (combined with peppermint and rosemary) can help with calming and resetting your emotional state. For children with an upset stomach or nausea, grab some ginger from your local grocery store, and have them take a warm infusion of it. Like cayenne, it is warming and helps to stimulate circulation, which is vital for people who sit at a computer or stand for long hours at work.
For everyday use, ginkgo is a must for brain health. It is a slow-acting herb, so it is best taken consistently over an extended time. Ginko can help to prevent anxiety, depression, dementia, and diminished eyesight. It (along with Bilberry and Gotu Kola) is the king and queen (it's a dioecious plant) of nerve and brain support. What makes it even more special is its ability to also supportive to the ear. There are very few (common) herbs that are useful for problems such as tinnitus (ringing in the ear) and vertigo (loss of balance). Since most of us are spending a lot of time swiping our phones, looking at television, or rushing to get to work, we don't have much time to work on brain games, read, or meditate. Not that ginkgo is a substitute for these important tasks, but it can help to reduce degeneration of the brain.
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Jennifer Hutchison Taylor is a herbal therapist, physiologist, author, doula, and reiki practitioner who helps women rediscover their feminine beauty and find the complete path to healing. As the founder of Beauty in Bloom, her mission is to promote generational wellness by providing natural, sustainable, and holistic health solutions for women. Beauty in Bloom exists to create a world where women are happy, healthy, and are taken back to their roots for healing. While herbs are the main tools that she uses, she combines this modality with superfood nutrition, spiritual guidance, and her rich biological sciences background to teach a powerful and revolutionary approach to holistic health.