What basic herbs/supplements/ointments do you recommend keeping on hand for the following:
- Headache Depends on the type of headache. For basic headaches wintergreen oil is a natural aspirin source and can be applied to the temples. Migraines are easier to prevent than to stop once started. Magnesium malate is a good preventative.
- Sinuses- Quercetin is a natural antihistamine. Eucalyptus is good for sinus infections if no probiotics are present.
- Flu- Andrographis is great for both colds and flu. Elderberry is also good. Also keep some electrolytes (trace element salt) on hand for the vomiting and diarrhea of the flu.
- Nausea- Ginger. Made in to a tea and sipped on slowly suppresses the vomit centers in the brain.
- Achiness- Ginger or wintergreen. Arnica cream is also great topically as long as there are no open wounds. Arnica creams also work for bruising. For stronger chronic pain DL phenylalanine. Keep in mind that this takes a few weeks to kick in.
- Scrapes/cuts- Calendula cream can be applied to rashes, scrapes and cuts. Healing ointments with chaparral and comfrey root are also good for scrapes and minor cuts. Keep some butterfly bandages on hand as well for slightly deeper cuts that would otherwise require minor stitching.
I'd like to create an "herb cabinet" :)
Thanks HV! Are all these safe for children?
Most are very safe. The eucalyptus oil is the only one I would not use on a very young child internally. And the magnesium malate and phenylalanine dosage will have to be adjusted for age and size.
Quercetin is a natural antihistamine.
You're not suggesting it in exclusion, are you? ( as in, the "allopathic" way it's sold?)I was under the impression you favoured herbs and whole food sources of 'healing'.
Actually in the past I said I prefer herbs as is in most cases. There are exceptions. For example using quercetin, which can be derived from eucalyptus would be no different than using eucalyptus oil also derived from eucalyptus. It would be pretty difficult though to get enough quercetin from natural sources to be of much benefit. So this pretty much has to be used as an isolate.
I also do not have much of a problem with concentrated extracts either since they are not really any different than something like a tea. What I do not like are standardized extracts. These isolate and concentrate one compound considered to be the active component. But plants rarely have a single active compound within a group. For example, Saint Johnswort was one of the first standardized herbs. First they standardized it for hypericin. Then they decided that hyperforin was the active ingredient then they standardized it for that. Then they decided the active component was the flavonoids. The fact is that all these compounds play a role in the antidepressant properties of SJW, and they work synergistically. So to isolate one active compound and to standardize it is like making a pharmaceutical. Pau d' arco is the same. It contains 18 antiseptic anthraquinones and napthaquinones and 5 anti-inflammatories. So isolating any one of these compounds blocks the synergy of the other compounds with the same effects. But I don't know of any high quercetin plants that have other antihistamine compounds that are working synergistically with the quercetin. So they are not really screwing up the synergy of anything up by isolating the quercetin.
Remember that there are exceptions to every rule.
Okay -- but I have the strong sense that the whole plant--Or say, a plant extract that is concentrated (then perhaps mixed with another)would always be better than say one element in isolation--for example, how would you get the quercetin from the eucalyptus? what process is involved?
I have never looked in to the process of flavonoid isolation so I don't know what would be involved. Probably some very expensive equipment.
What about making something yourself from onion and raw honey? (let's say) Wouldn't that be a lot easier, and have some unique qualities that simply aren't knowable? --> Qualities that are present when something is hardly altered.
Yes, this is actually an old fol remedy. You boil the yellow onion skins to remove the quercetin then add the honey and boil off the water to make a cough syrup. Make sure to use yellow onions, not red or white.
The capsules are more convenient though since the quercetin is being extracted either way.
I understand the high potency argument--I guess I haven't eyt altogther 'bought' it. I persist in this wierd certainty that
we were not meant to have to be able to get such things...
and that in fact, it's the SMALLEST possible doese, of anything, that is the tru healer--in the way it respects the body's own capapcities for incredible balance. Of course, one would have to NOT be bombarding the body with whatever is assailing it. (in terms of food, etc.)
Yes, I agree. I do not like the "shotgun" approach using high doses except again in certain cases. If someone has advanced liver cancer for example then you want to hit it hard.
But the concentrated extracts are taken in much lower doses so they equivalent is still the same as you would get in an non-extracted herb. When doing capsules though it does allow for smaller and less capsules. For example a half teaspoon of herbs will fill 2 size '00' capsules. But using extracts you can get that down to one size '0' capsule or less.