Herbal Cures You Can Grow At Home

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Food is the best type of healthcare. What could be better than picking it from your own windowsill herb garden? Here are some food cures you can grow simply and easily at home.

Herbal medicine has a long established history and the benefits of many herbs have been featured on this site.

Here is a list of home remedies that you can grow from seedlings, or even seeds, and use them for culinary as well as medicinal uses. You do not have to be green fingered to have a go at these, it can be a great project to get kids involved with too.

1. ALOE VERA
Aloe vera has long been revered for its healing properties with the Egyptian people calling it the “plant of immortality” as far back as 6,000 years ago. The natural gel within the luscious leaves of the aloe vera plant has demonstrated powerful healing, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. There are at least six natural antiseptic compounds in aloe vera gel which gives it the ability to kill mold, fungus, bacteria and viruses.
The gel is effective at healing burns, calming sunburn, treating eczema and psoriasis, gum disease, clearing acne, reducing inflammatory pain, easing digestive problems and is a great moisturizer.
The gel can be added to smoothies also.
How to grow: Plant in pots placed in full sunshine. Water well.

For a full list of 30 ways to use Aloe Vera click:http://www.naturalcuresnotmedicine.com/2014/08/30-amazing-ways-use-aloe-vera.html
For a recipe to make your own jar of Aloe Gel click:http://www.naturalcuresnotmedicine.com/2014/07/make-diy-aloe-vera-gel.HTML

2. LEMON BALM (Melissa officinalis)
Lemon Balm is a member of the mint family and the leaves have a lovely fresh lemony aroma. The leaves contain chemicals recognized for their calming and sedative effects.

Herbalists advocate this plant for treating digestive problems, including upset stomach, bloating, intestinal gas (flatulence), vomiting, and colic; for pain, including menstrual cramps, headache and toothache; and for mental disorders, including hysteria and melancholia. It’s calming properties also help anxiety, sleep problems, and restlessness. Research has also shown it to be a calming aromatherapy treatment for Alzheimer’s patients.
It is also an effective insect repellent so can be planted in pots around a garden.
It can also be used for healing and preventing cold sores. Also, rub leaves directly onto skin as a natural insect repellent or to soothe bites.
You can add the leaves to a salad or make a tasty herbal water mix, or simple lemon balm tea.
Make a calming lemon balm infusion to take at night:
Place about 3/4 cup lemon balm leaves into a small pan and add enough water to just cover the leaves. Simmer and covered partially, until the liquid is reduced in half. Strain. While still warm, measure out about 1/2 cup of the concentrated tea and add 1/4 cup raw local organic honey. Store in the refrigerator for a few weeks. Dose by the spoonful at night to help calm and relax everyone from children to adults.
How To Grow: Be sure to plant this in pots otherwise it will take over your entire garden.

3. MINT (Mentha longifolia)
Another prolific grower this is easy and tasty to grow at home. Mint promotes healthy digestion. It soothes the stomach in cases of indigestion or inflammation. When you feel sick to your stomach, drinking a cup of mint tea can give you relief. Mint tea also soothes stomach cramps and flatulence.
Even just the smell of mint oil or freshly crushed mint leaves can alleviate any stomach problems.
The strong aroma is also very effective in clearing up congestion of the nose, throat, bronchi and lungs, which gives relief for respiratory disorders that often result from asthma and the common cold. For a natural decongestant, place a fistful of mint leaves in a shallow bowl and cover with boiling water. Lean over it, drape a towel over your head, and breathe the steam.
How To Grow: Grow in a pot to avoid it colonizing your garden patch.

4. LAVENDER 
Lavender essential oil is a very popular herbal medicine and is used to treat a number of conditions including wound healing, hair loss and anxiety, as well as being used in the skincare and beauty sectors. The plant itself has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.
Crush a handful of the heads and add to a bowl of boiling water to use as a steam bath for your face. You can also dab the oil from the flowers on blemishes.
How To Grow: Lavender is a sun-loving plant but needs good drainage. Use a small pot filled with gravel and a light soil.

5. BASIL (Ocimum basilicum)
Basil is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory and is a popular herb to add to many dishes or smoothies. Basil contains flavonoids which can provide protection to many cells in our bodies. It is a very good source of vitamin A and also helps prevent free radicals from oxidizing cholesterol in the blood stream, thus improving cardiovascular health.
It can prevent free radical damage in a range of other chronic conditions including asthma, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. In addition basil contains magnesium, which is known to promote cardiovascular health by relaxing the heart muscles and blood vessels, thus improving blood flow and reducing the risk of irregular heart rhythms or a spasming of the heart muscle or a blood vessel.
Rubbing crushed basil leaves on your forehead can banish headaches. For painful or swollen feet pour boiling water over a basil leaves, allow to cool slightly and bath your feet.
How To Grow: Grow in small pots and enjoy the beautiful fresh aroma of this plant on your windowsill. The small white flowers should be removed as these can make the leaves taste bitter.

6. THYME (Thymus vulgaris)
Thyme has powerful antiseptic and antioxidant properties. Traditionally the flowers, leaves, and oil are used as medicine.

You can apply thyme leaves directly to the skin for hoarseness (laryngitis), swollen tonsils (tonsillitis), sore mouth, and chew for bad breath.
Tea made from lemon thyme can be used to treat colds before bed. Warning: Don’t use thyme in pregnancy.
How To Grow: Plant in a sunny spot in dry, light soil.

7. SAGE (Salvia officinalis)
Sage means “to be in good health”. Sage tea is a great treatment for a sore throat. Sage leaves are a rich source of several B-complex groups of vitamins, such as folic acid, thiamin, pyridoxine and riboflavin many times higher than the recommended daily levels as well as containing high levels of vitamin A and the essential oil has many health benefits.
Pour boiling water over a quarter cup of fresh sage leaves and allow to cool before using to gargle to help soothe a sore throat.
How To Grow: Sage needs to be in full sunlight in dry sandy soil.

8. ROSEMARY (Rosmarinus officinalis)
Rosemary has been hailed since ancient times for its many medicinal properties. This herb is another member of the mint family and was traditionally used to help alleviate muscle pain, improve memory, boost the immune and circulatory system, and promote hair growth. It is a good source of iron, calcium, and vitamin B6 as well as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. Again Rosemary essential oil has many health benefits.
Used to improve brain function and memory, you can use a fresh rosemary plant and squeeze the leaves and stem and hold it to your nose for a few minutes. It is also a good mood lifter – tea made from a thumb-sized piece has been known to lift spirits in people suffering from seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and hangovers. Infuse warm red wine with rosemary, cinnamon, and cloves to soothe winter colds.
Here is useful information regarding the effect of inhaling Rosemary oil on memory:
http://www.naturalcuresnotmedicine.com/2014/07/scientists-find-sniffing-rosemary-can-increase-memory-75.html
How To Grow: This is a hardy perennial which flourishes in sunshine.

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