Hygiene and sanitation, #1 in watching out for #2!

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Hygiene and sanitation, #1 in watching out for #2! Host: Sam Coffman “The Human Path” Hygiene and sanitation, how prepared are you really in regards to  and (in the worst case) coping with gasto-intestinal disease in a post-disaster environment?  The Human Path Sam Coffman discusses everything you ever wanted to know (and some things you … Continue reading Hygiene and sanitation, #1 in watching out for #2!

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6 Immune-Boosting Foods People Ate Before There Were Antibiotics

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6 Immune-Boosting Foods People Ate Before There Were Antibiotics

Image source: Pixabay.com

In the not-so-distant past, antibiotics and antibacterial wipes, lotions and hand sanitizers had not been invented, so one had to rely on your immune system and foods to fight off any type of virus or bacterial infection.

Too many of us take these important medicines for granted. My maternal grandfather nearly died from a simple cut on his hand. It became infected and soon involved his entire arm. The doctor tried his best, but was unable to stop the infection. The doctor finally asked my grandmother if she was willing to try an “experimental” — yes, he really called it that — drug called penicillin. Thankfully, my grandfather wasn’t allergic, and he was up and around in a few days.

What would we do, though, if we suddenly went back in time 100 years and were unable to find antibiotics, anti-virals, or other types of germ-fighting medicine? You got it! We would be back to relying on our immune system.

Beet Powder: The Ancient Secret To Renewed Energy And Stamina

Let’s take a look at six of the top immune-building foods and herbs.

Top 3 Food Sources

We want to provide the immune system with all of the vitamins, minerals and essentials that it needs to do its job properly.

1. Foods rich in iron

Too little iron can weaken the immune system. So eat foods that are rich in iron, such as meat, poultry, seafood, nuts, seeds, fish and dried fruits.

2. Foods rich in Vitamin C

Especially when combined with iron-rich foods which help the body absorb iron, vitamin C is a well-known immune system supporter! Think beyond the typical oranges and grapefruits; bell peppers have more vitamin C than an orange! You also can consume dark leafy greens, broccoli, berries, snap peas, and papaya alongside that morning glass of juice.

3. Garlic

6 Immune-Boosting Foods People Ate Before There Were Antibiotics

Image source: Pixabay.com

While you won’t win the most kissable prize, garlic has been used for centuries to fight off upper respiratory infections. Garlic improves the body’s immune system by allowing it to fight off those annoying viruses. Fresh garlic works better than supplements, so add garlic to everything and feel the burn!

Top 3 Herbs

By now almost everyone has heard of Echinacea and goldenrod, but what if you needed other choices? Check out these three little-known herbs that have been used for centuries to help support the immune system function.

1. Ginger

Try growing and storing ginger at home so that you always have access to this super anti-nausea and immune-supporting root. Ginger can help the body defend itself against opportunistic infection. Ginger is also super anti-inflammatory, which means faster healing when you do get sick.

2. Cat’s claw

This is the herb with the funny name, but there is no denying that cat’s claw has huge effects on the immune system. The root and bark are the parts most often used in tea form. They contain compounds that trigger the immune system and help to improve the ability of white blood cells to fight off pathogens. This herb is also a powerful anti-inflammatory, similar to ginger.

3. Astragalus

This herb has been used in Chinese medicine for untold centuries. Astragalus helps the immune system by increasing the immune cells in the bone marrow and lymph tissues. The root of Astragalus is commonly cooked in soups or stews to help soften it. You also can take this as a capsule.

What would you add to the list? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

Survival Gear Review: Survival Guides to Edible and Medicinal Plants of the Rocky Mountains

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Edible_Medicinal_Survival_Plants_of_the_Rocky_MountainsWaterford_Press_ground_unfolded

Waterford_Edible-Medicinal_Survival_Plants_of_the_Rocky_MountainsWaterford_Press_in_handSurvival Guides are a dime-a-dozen, but good ones, the real save-your-life guides are as rare as hens teeth. Luckily the two new plastic-covered foldouts from Jason Schwartz are an outstanding and necessary contribution to your survival kit that literally could save your life. For less than the cost of a box of American made ammo, you could outfit your survival gear with some to-the-point literature can make a difference when on an afternoon hike, or when the S really hits the fan.

By Doc Montana, a Contributing Author of Survival Cache and SHTFBlog

Published in 2016 by the ultimate pocket guide company, the Waterford Press, these guides join an ever growing list of speciality reference booklets. “Putting the World in your Pocket” is Waterford’s motto, and it could be true given they’ve had over 500 publications with over five million sales.

Fast Food

Waterford_Medicinal_Survival_Plants_of_the_Rocky_MountainsWaterford_Press_knife_berriesThe two water-resistant guides under discussion are Edible Survival Plants of the Rocky Mountains, and Medicinal Survival Plants of the Rocky Mountains. Both guides are in the classic Waterford six-fold design leading to 12 individual vertically oriented pages. The full-color guides are printed on white paper and laminated heavily with factory-installed bends between pages.

The pictures are a godsend and make for fast field ID of plants. The brief descriptions confirm the identity and instructions follow for applying the part of the plant in the most useful form. Some are used as tea, some as topical, and some eaten outright.

The philosophy behind the guides according to their author is to, “provide a set of handy, yet realistic reference guides that will help hikers and backpackers lost in the Rocky Mountains forage for food, or treat injuries and ailments using wild plants and trees.” An assumption the author makes is that most survival situation are from three days to a week. This is reflected in the use of often low-calorie plants to get you to a better place and keep your spirits up.

Walkabout

Waterford_Medicinal_Survival_Plants_of_the_Rocky_MountainsWaterford_Press_berries_closeIn my own testing of the guides, I wandered my million acre backyard and looked for both plants listed in the guides and to see if a plant was in the guide. In most cases the obvious plants were covered, while locating specific plants took some time. A suggestion, if space permitted, would be to mention common locations of plants if they exist. Like kinnikinnick, dandelion, and thistle on old roads where the soil had been compacted decades earlier.

Knowledge is Power and Power Corrupts

Waterford_Medicinal_Survival_Plants_of_the_Rocky_MountainsWaterford_Press__neck_knifePoaching plants is easily as abundant as poaching animals. While the hunting laws don’t often address North American medicinal plants, there is the concern that someone with a little knowledge and a bunch of free time might pillage the local area of important plants. And in one rare case with the Curly-Cup Gumweed, there is a plant “species of concern” because it resembles a medicinal plant mentioned in the guide known as the Howell’s Gumweed. There is a very slim chance in a small region of the west that the more rare related species (Howell’s Gumweed) will be over harvested by an overzealous collector, but human nature is anything but predictable.

Related: Bushcraft Mushrooms

According to Schwartz, the highlighted plants were chosen for the wide distribution, easily identifiable traits, and ubiquitous presence across landscape and seasons. So with that said, you can take Rocky Mountains with a grain of salt. You will encounter most of the plants in these guides well outside the rugged terrain of the west, but not so much on the plains, east coast, or desert America, of course.

The Saguache County Colorado Sheriff’s Department found the guides so particularly helpful that they adopted them as essential equipment to have when backcountry survival might be an issue.

The Doctor Is In

Half the pages of the Medicinal Survival Plants of the Rocky Mountains IDs 18 plants of which seven are trees. The other half of the guide explains treatment options, medicinal preparations including infusions, tea, decoction, juicing as well as plant feature identification and author bio.

Half the Edible Survival Plants of the Rocky Mountains IDs 19 plants of which three are trees. And the reverse six pages of the over half include survival basics, 16 images of types of edible plants, the steps of the Universal Edibility Test, general plant preparation and eating practices, and a note on edible plant myths.

Read Also: Tree Bark as an Emergency Food

Each entry for a plant across both guides includes a description, the habitat, harvesting tips, preparation (in the Survival guide), and comments and cautions. I had to smile when reading about the Ponderosa Pine in the Survival guide. Jason Schwartz is a bushcrafter through and through. In the middle of the description Jason uses 15 words to explain baton. The baton, by the way and in Jason’s words is, “an arm’s length branch used as a mallet to pound the back of the knife.” Once a teacher, always a teacher.

waterford_tetons_wyomingHere’s the deal with these guides. They cost little and weigh almost nothing. They are filled with lifesaving options for when you really need them, and you don’t even need to read them ahead of time (but I would suggest it). And anyone living within 200 miles east or west of the Continental Divide should spring for the $8 apiece and put a set in every bug out bag and car or truck glove box. Better yet, head outdoors and familiarize yourself with the local edible and medicinal flora. You’ll thank me and Jason later.

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7 Heal-Anything Medicinal Plants You Can Grow Indoors

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7 Heal-Anything Medicinal Plants You Can Grow Indoors

Marigold. Image source: Pixabay.com

There is absolutely nothing like having fresh medicinal plants that you can pick and use right on the spot, when you need them.

Plus, you can dry them, and then use a mortise and pestle to grind them and encapsulate your own medicinal plants. You know they were never sprayed with pesticides. And you know all about the nutrients that were fed to them.

You can grow them in decorative planters in the kitchen if you have the lighting for it.

Many people set up a multi-tiered rack that allows planter pots to be set at a forward-facing angle. This allows you to put the back of it against a wall, and the plants grow at a forward-facing angle.

Other people like to use wire hangers and hang the pots from a wall in rows or a pattern. If you’re going to do this, then test the strength of your wall.

If you have a sunroom or a sunroom-like area, these make great growing spaces, too.

Learn How To Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

Here are seven of the best medicinal plants you can grow indoors:

1. St John’s Wort. This plant will grow year-round with a grow light in the morning or evening to extend the growing hours of the day. If you find that it’s not flowering, then it may need longer hours of light.

7 Heal-Anything Medicinal Plants You Can Grow Indoors

St. John’s Wort. Image source: Pixabay.com

It’s a great-looking plant with attractive yellow flowers and can really brighten up a home.

Benefits:

  • May be as effective as some prescription medication for treating depression1.
  • Helps alleviate the symptoms of PMS and menopause2.
  • May help with the symptoms of ADD (attention deficit disorder)2.

2. Thyme. This is a hearty plant that can be used in cooking, as it’s one of the most popular herbs around. It’s hearty, grows pretty easily and doesn’t require much care at all.

Benefits:

  • Thyme has been shown to aid in the relief of chest and respiratory problems, including coughs, bronchitis and chest congestion3.
  • Thyme has been shown to have a strong antimicrobial activity, neutralizing such bacteria and fungi as Staphalococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Escherichia coli and Shigella sonnei4.

3. Sage. Its genus name, Salvia, means “to heal.” As long as you give it light, adequate water and good soil, you almost can’t kill it. Sage is one of the herbs that makes everyone look like they’ve got a green thumb.

7 Heal-Anything Medicinal Plants You Can Grow Indoors

Sage. Image source: Pixabay.com

Benefits:

  • May lessen the symptoms of Alzheimer’s 5.
  • Has been shown to lower both blood glucose and cholesterol5.

4. Parsley. Too many people think of parsley as a garnish on their plate. But parsley is one of the best green foods around.

It grows rather easily, and you shouldn’t have a problem so long as you keep its soil damp.

Benefits:

  • Can help with bad breath6.
  • Can help detoxify the brain of ammonia, thereby reducing the feelings of a hangover.
  • May be a potent anticancer agent and has been shown to be chemo-protective7.

5. Marigold. A truly unique and beautiful flowing medicinal, marigold will grow with only just a little bit of TLC needed.

Benefits:

  • The flowers have long been touted to posses near legendary anti-inflammatory properties that have shown to fight eczema and allergic reactions.
  • Relieves pain of arthritis.
  • Can be made into tinctures and ointments that have shown to sooth rashes, bed sores, diaper rash, sun burns and other types of burns.

6. Lavender. This is one of the most fragrant medicinal plants you can grow in your home. Lavender is a little more work to grow inside and it needs a little more space.

Benefits:

  • Put lavender in your pillow to have a restful sleep and avoid insomnia8.
  • Helps with nervousness, headache, stomach nerves, restlessness and stress8.
7 Heal-Anything Medicinal Plants You Can Grow Indoors

Image source: Pixabay.com

7. Echinacea. Here you have the granddaddy of all medicinal plants. It grows easily, as long as you give it a grow light.

Benefits:

  • Several studies show that Echinacea helps boost the immune10.
  • Echinacea has shown to be very promising in treating most any kind of infection, from sinusitis to vaginal yeast infections to ear infections10.
  • Shows promise in treating colon cancer and athlete’s foot10.

What plants would you add to the list? Share your tips in the section below:

If You Like All-Natural Home Remedies, You Need To Read Everything That Hydrogen Peroxide Can Do. Learn More Here.

hydrogen peroxide report

Sources:

  1. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/stjohnswort/sjw-and-depression.htm
  2. https://draxe.com/st-johns-wort-uses/
  3. Kelm MA, Nair MG, Strasburg GM, DeWitt DL. Antioxidant and cyclooxygenase inhibitory phenolic compounds from Ocimum sanctum Linn. Phytomedicine 2000 Mar;7(1):7-13. 2000. PMID:12240.
  4. Bagamboula CF, Uyttendaeleand M, Debevere J. Inhibitory effect of thyme and basil essential oils, carvacrol, thymol, estragol, linalool and p-cymene towards Shigella sonnei and S. flexneri. Food Microbio 2004 Feb;21 (1):33-42. 2004.
  5. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/266480.php
  6. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/herbs-and-spices/health-benefits-of-parsley.html
  7. http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf00013a020
  8. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/lavender
  9. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/echinacea

Herbs to Know Stevia rebaudiana

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Herbs to Know Stevia: This easy to grow tender perennial will give you years of fresh leaves to use in cooking and herbal preparations. | PreparednessMama

Do you grow stevia in your herb garden? This easy to grow tender perennial will give you years of fresh leaves to use in cooking and herbal preparations. This month’s herb to know is Stevia. Learn how to grow it, harvest and use it. Get the Facts on Stevia: Name: Stevia rebaudiana, sweet leaf, sweet herb […]

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White Sage Plant: Growing Guide, Smudging, and Seeds

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The post White Sage Plant: Growing Guide, Smudging, and Seeds is by
Kevin and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

If there’s any herb that has a history, it’s white sage.it’s been used for hundreds of years, most notably among the native american tribes, where it’s known as qaashil, pilhtaay, shaltai, and many more ancient names.​It lives well past two years if properly cared for, and it’s easy to care for — so you should […]

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Five Emergency Toothache Remedies From Wild Plants

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tooth_ache_remedy_featured

tooth_ache_painThe crippling pain of a toothache can occur at inconvenient times – perhaps when far from your dentist or even your emergency first aid kit.  Because of the potentially intense pain and potentially critical health concerns associated with a tooth infection, wild herbs to treat toothache is an important category of medicinals to become familiar with in preparation for emergencies in the bush.

By Nathaniel Whitmore a Contributing Author to SHTFBlog and SurvivalCache

In my previous article Five Best DIY Toothache Remedies I mentioned three herbal remedies (the other two were oil pulling and shiatsu / acupressure).  Of the three, only one related to herbs common in the wild in North America.  I chose to focus on Barberry (Berberis spp.),  though it is a representative of the group – the berberine-containing antimicrobials.  Others include Goldthread (Coptis spp.) and Oregon Grape Root (formerly Berberis but now Mahonia aquifolium).  These and the other berberine-containing antimicrobials are great toothache remedies, and will be discussed in detail below.  The other two remedies in that article, though “natural”, won’t be easily found in the North American forests.  Clove is from Indonesia, and besides it is typically the essential oil that is used for toothaches.  Toothache Plant (Spilanthes spp.) is largely of the tropics.  It can be grown here (quite easily, actually), but I do not know it in the wild of even the warm locations I have been to in North America.  So, what other toothache remedies do we have around?

Berberine-Containing Antimicrobials

Lately, I have been focusing on Barberry (Berberis spp.) in regards to this group.  It is a common invasive where I live (I harvest it regularly as part of maintaining my property in New York state).  It also has the genus name that is the source of the name “berberine” – for the constituent that gives the roots of these plants a yellow color and strong medicinal properties.  Plus, for many years Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis) has been in the spotlight to the point that this native plant has been overharvested.  There are different virtues to the various berberine-containing species.  For instance, Goldenseal roots are fleshy and are therefore easier to harvest and process than the woody roots of the prickly shrub Barberry.  For this reason, Goldenseal is a good herb to grow if you don’t have it locally abundant in the wild.  In the bush, it is basically a matter of finding whatever species you can.

Related: Five Best DIY Toothache Remedies

oregon_grape_forageBarberry species are common in some areas (often invasive).  Once harvested, the inner bark can be scraped off the root.  It can be packed directly onto the tooth or into the cavity.  Oregon Grape Root, also being shrubby (though small), is similar (See image – the root bark is scraped, showing the yellow inner bark.  Also take note of the bowl full of edible berries.  These pictures were taken in Montana.)  Goldthread is so-named because the rhizomes are thin and string-like.  The Chinese species used in medicine is much more fleshy.  Goldenseal is fleshy and can be easily chopped for making tinctures or chewed on for direct treatment of toothache.  Chinese medicine also utilizes a species of Skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) with berberine-containing roots.

Phellodendron is another berberine-containing herb commonly used in Chinese medicine.  Often the three Phellodendron (Huang Bai), Goldthread (Huang Lian), and Skullcap (Huang Qin) are used together, perhaps with other non-berberine-containing “yellows” like Astragalus.  Many websites claim that the medicinal actions of berberine are unverified.  (Who knows if it is really berberine that is the main active constituent anyway?  And certainly each herb has countless active chemical constituents.)  However, the berberine-containing herbs from all over the world make up one of the best examples of verification in herbal medicine from different parts of the world.  To the best of my knowledge, all cultures that had access to yellow, berberine-containing roots figured out their medicinal uses.

barberry_tooth_ache_remedyIn addition to a distinct and very useful antimicrobial activity, Barberry and these other herbs are very good for stimulating the liver and gallbladder (take note, for gallbladder attacks are another medical emergency worth preparing for and herbal remedies can be very useful).  They are the quintessential bitter, “heat-clearing” herbs.  The bitter taste indicates cooling, cleansing actions.  “Heat-clearing” refers to the antimicrobial and antiinflammatory properties.  These herbs are often the best antibiotics around.  However, because of their strong bitter taste people generally don’t want to use them.  Plus, as with all herbs of powerful effect, there are some cautions and contraindications.

Regarding products available for sale, tincture can be quite useful to treat toothaches.  Perhaps, ideal is powder.  Powdered Goldenseal is often available.  Because of overharvest of native wild stands it is generally best to buy powder made from (organically) cultivated roots rather than from wildcrafted stock.  I would discourage it altogether, except that it really does work like a charm.  Very good to know about.  The powder can be applied directly to the trouble area.  It is also possible to tuck dried material into the gums near the affected tooth.  For instance, a Chinatown apothecary would likely have slices of Huang Lian that could be placed right between the cheek and gum.  Whether from the wild or from the store “chewing” these roots (like tobacco – chewed a little and tucked into the cheek) is a great way to keep the medicine local.

Echinacea

echinacea_cone_flowerConeflower (Echinacea spp. – the genus name is also used as the common name) is one of the best-known herbal remedies, made famous right alongside Goldenseal in the simple American formula Echinacea / Goldenseal that used to be the quintessential herbal antibiotic formula.  Unfortunately, many of the Echinacea products on the market are basically worthless due to the fact that Echinacea has a short shelf life as a dried herb.  Best products, in general, are tinctures made from the fresh root, flower, or seed (the leaf and stem are less potent).  The dried material does hold up for a little while, but not long.  

If you happen to live in an area where Echinacea grows wild, or if you find some in a flower garden, you can simply pick it fresh to chew on it.  If the cone part of the flower is still fresh, you can cut into it to and remove the center for use.  You can also unearth a piece of the root.  It is easy to figure out which part is most potent by chewing on it.  Echinacea, like Toothache Plant (Spilanthes spp.), creates a distinct tingling sensation on the lips, tongue, or whatever part of your mouth it touches.  It also encourages saliva production.  The more you tingle and salvate, the better.  It indicates medicinal potency.  It also numbs the ache.  You can also compare different species by taste.  

Prickly Ash

zanthoxylum_americanumSpecies of Zanthoxylum also have a tendency to produce saliva and a sensation that helps relieve pain.  In this way, it is very much like Echinacea and Toothache Plant.  Sometimes, Zanthoxylum is known at “Toothache Tree”.  The name Prickly Ash is in reference to the pinnately compound leaves, which are similar to Ash (Fraxinus spp.).  Prickly Ash and Ash are not very closely related. There are many species.  I am not sure how all their medicinal properties compare,  If you live near them or are travelling through an area where they grow.  It is worth getting to know them.  You might even find a toothpick, as the name Prickly is not in vain!  The bark is the main part used.  It is available through herb shops as well as in the wild.

Calamus

acorus_calamus_sweet_flagCalamus, or Sweet Flag, (Acorus spp.) is another very interesting medicinal plant.  Like the berberine-containing herbs, the medicinal virtues of Calamus have been verified by many cultures all over the world.  It has been a major medicinal of European and Chinese herbal traditions and has been among the most revered herbs of Ayurveda (the ancient healing tradition of India) and Native American medicine.  Several Native tribes have used Calamus for toothaches.  Moerman (Native American Ethnobotany) lists that the Blackfoot, Chippewa, Cree, Creek, Mahuna, Okanagan, Paiute, Saanich, Shoshoni, and Thomson used Calamus as a toothache remedy.

Read Also: Tree Bark as an Emergency Food 

Unfortunately, one of the main side-effects of Calamus that is relatively common is that it can cause or exacerbate heartburn.  This clashes a bit with the chewing method of administration I have been promoting for the treatment of toothache.  Perhaps, for mild toothaches a small amount of Calamus would be beneficial and tolerated by most.  But with higher doses, such as one with an intense toothache might be driven towards, there will be a higher rate of intolerance.  Try a little first.

Calamus has many benefits, mostly relating to its pungent, aromatic, and somewhat bitter flavor.  It stimulates digestion, opens the lungs, and benefits the mind.  Native people have traditionally used it to help with concentration and as a stimulant when travelling or for ceremonial dance.  Likewise, yogic and Taoist traditions have used Calamus for the mind.  It is a primary remedy for lung congestion.

The name Sweet Flag is because it looks similar to Iris (the leaves- not the flower), which can be called Blue Flag or Yellow Flag, etc. (according to the flower color).  “Sweet” because it smells nice (such as when walked on), not because it tastes sweet.  If you happen to walk on it, there is a good chance your feet will be wet, as it mostly grows in swampy conditions.  It is also called “Swamp Root”.

Spruce

spruce_tree_tooth_acheSpruce (Picea spp.) and its evergreen relatives are readily available toothache remedies.  I mention Spruce as the representative genus here because they tend to be pitchy and seemed to have been favored by Natives for toothaches.  The pitch is antimicrobial, pain relieving, and can be applied directly to the trouble area.  It can also be used to pack a cavity to fight infection and close the hole.  Cedar, Pine, Hemlock, Fir, and Juniper can likewise be used.  The needles and inner bark are also medicinal.     

Barberry Photo Courtesy of:

anneheathen

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Medicine Growing Your Own!

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Medicine Growing Your Own Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Audio in player below! It’s almost spring, and that means it’s that time of year to get planting your medicinal herb garden. The question is, what herbs are the most important herbs to grow? In this episode of Herbal Prepper Live, we will cover a wide variety … Continue reading Medicine Growing Your Own!

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Comfrey The Knit Bone Herb

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Comfrey The Knit Bone Herb If you have no access to a doctor or in a SHTF situation, Comfrey has been known to heal bones and double cell regeneration. I have been asked a few times over the past year to find a great article about Comfrey, Comfrey is a common name for plants in …

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Essential Herbs Series – Herb Blogger Roundup

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While researching my Essential Herbs series I ran across many wonderful bloggers. I thought you'd like to meet them too . Herb Blogger Roundup| PreparednessMama

Herb Blogger Roundup While researching the Essential Herbs for Every Garden series I ran across many wonderful bloggers. I thought you’d like to meet them too. Join me for a Herb Blogger Roundup. I spent the morning in the garden. Planting a few extra seeds, transplanting some basil and tending to the herbs. Even though […]

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Seven Essential Herbal Skills Part 2

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Seven Essential Herbal Skills Part 2 Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Audio in player below! We’re picking up where we left off last week, and covering tinctures, infused oils, salves, and poultices. Here’s the description from last week’s live show. It’s back to basics, Herbal Prepper style! This week and next week, I’m covering essential … Continue reading Seven Essential Herbal Skills Part 2

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Seven Essential Herbal Skills

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Seven Essential Herbal Skills Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Audio in player below! It’s back to basics, Herbal Prepper style! This week and next week, I’m covering essential herbal skills. These skills will help you build a natural, affordable, sustainable source of remedies. They are simple, effective, and you can learn them quickly. If I … Continue reading Seven Essential Herbal Skills

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5 Headache-Curing Herbs Your Ancestors Used

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5 Headache-Curing Herbs Your Ancestors Used

Butterbur. Image source: Pixabay.com

Everyone gets a headache every now and then. Whether it is a tension headache from an overly demanding boss or a very painful rebound headache, there is only one thing most of us can think of: how to get rid of it quickly!

You might be wondering what our ancestors used before the invention of those over-the-counter pain killers. Herbs were among the most popular remedies and they worked remarkably well.

Here are the top 5 herbs that have been used for ages to stop headaches, before pharmacies, before pills, and certainly before your boss was born!

1. Willow

The bark from willow trees has a long history of pain relief, and not just for headaches. Extracts from white willow bark was used by the pioneers in the 1800s, but the Native people of America used it well before that. Willow bark contains a compound, salicin, which your body will convert into salicylic acid, known to you and I as aspirin.

2. Ginger

Yep, that same spice you probably have in your kitchen cabinet is well-known for stopping headaches (and nausea, too). Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory, so it works on several different levels.

Fast, All-Natural Pain Relief With No Nasty Side Effects!

It can be purchased in capsule form, but the quickest way to relieve headaches — and the one our ancestors used — was to put a half dozen thin slices of fresh ginger root in two cups of water and boil it as a tea. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes and drink after it has cooled a bit.

3. Feverfew

This ancient herb, best known for reducing fevers, is a terrific choice for migraines as it not only reduces pain but is known to help alleviate nausea and sensitivity to light. The leaves and flowers contain a compound that cause the blood vessels to dilate.

4. Butterbur

The name of this herb always reminds me of butter beans, but it’s actually a very old folk remedy for not only headaches and migraines, but for other types of pain. For those who suffer from regular migraines, taking butterbur regularly has been shown in some studies to reduce the number of migraines by as much as 50 percent and the severity of pain by as much as 80 percent when compared to the placebo group. [1]

5. Peppermint and rosemary

While you have certainly consumed both of these herbs, you probably have not considered putting them together. It’s time to change that! Rosemary mixed with peppermint (and some recipes call for a bit of lavender also) makes a terrific “brain tonic” that will relieve headache pain, ease tension (which is the cause behind most headaches), and improve blood circulation. A tea of fresh peppermint leaves with a sprig of fresh rosemary is an old folk remedy for headaches that seems to withstand the test of time.

What would you add to our list? Share your tips in the section below:

[1] http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1526-4610.2005.05044.x/abstract

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

Immune-Boosting ‘Miracle Herbs’ Your Ancestors Used

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Immune-Boosting ‘Miracle Herbs’ Your Ancestors Used

Artist: Harold Anderson

Before there were flu shots, vaccinations and antibiotics, our ancestors had no alternative other than to rely on herbs for healing, treatment and prevention.

This isn’t to say that herbs are ineffective, although modern medicine has pushed many of them to the wayside. The truth is that many modern medicines have their base in herbal compounds.

Unfortunately, much of the knowledge regarding herbs and how to use them has been forgotten by the general population. Ask anyone under the age of 50 if they know what plant or tree aspirin comes from, and chances are that they won’t know.

Learn How To Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

Here are five herbs our ancestors used – and perhaps you should, too.

1. Echinacea

Although you might have heard of a few studies supposedly refuting this herb’s effectiveness, there are far more positive studies than negative ones. The indigenous people of America used this herb to stay healthy. It is commonly taken in the form of a tea; the normal dose is two to three cups each day if you are ill, but one cup per day for “maintenance.” This beautiful flowering herb is easily grown just about anywhere. Dry the leaves and flowers for year-round use.

2. American ginseng

Don’t confuse this with Chinese ginseng. The scientific name of this plant is Panax quinquefolius, and modern research shows that this tonic herb not only supports a healthy immune system, but it can help to prevent upper respiratory infections, too.

3. Garlic

Immune-Boosting ‘Miracle Herbs’ Your Ancestors Used

Image source: Pixabay.com

This herb might not win you a “most kissable” award, but there is no denying that it has powerful healing- and immune-supporting compounds. Long before the discovery of antibiotics, garlic was the treatment of choice for internal infections and was used for everything from bronchitis to dysentery. Remember that garlic has to be cut or crushed to release its active ingredients. An old-fashioned cold remedy was to crush a large clove of garlic and mix it into a tablespoon of honey. This was consumed three or more times per day when a person was sick and once per day to keep the cooties away.

4. Astragalus

A member of the pea family, this herb has been found to improve the immune system by stimulating the body to make more immune cells in both lymph tissue and bone marrow. The leaves are used to make tea, and fresh roots are sliced into soups. This is another easy-to-grow plant that you might want to consider adding to your herb garden.

5. Oregano

Your probably have some of this in your kitchen right now! Oregano is actually one of the most potent herbs for improving the immune system and can help the body boost its white blood cell count.

Immune-Boosting ‘Miracle Herbs’ Your Ancestors Used

Image source: Pixabay.com

If you enjoy the taste, you can make oregano tea. Of course, you can always make more Italian food and add oregano to just about anything you are cooking.

A very old cold and flu remedy was to make a tonic with sage, thyme and oregano in a pot of water and drink three or more cups per day.

While we are on the subject, let’s take a minute to discuss things that some people believe will work to cure or prevent infections or viruses … but won’t.

  • Cutting an onion and leaving it in a room to “absorb” viruses won’t do anything more than give you a pretty awful-smelling room.
  • Burning wormwood shavings or any other type of incense doesn’t work, either. It is thought that the smoke will remove viruses and bacteria from the air, and while it might smell pretty, smoke will only irritate the respiratory tract.
  • Once, when I was young and suffering from a cold, my grandmother had me soak my feet in hot water, then put on a pair of wet socks and wear them overnight. I’m not sure what the idea was behind this one, but trust me, it does not work. It only makes for a long and miserable night with no sleep!

Of course, there are other ways to boost your immune system. Exercise (but not to excess), regular sleep, a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables, and low stress are all vital components for proper immune system function.

What are your favorite herbs to boost the immune system? Share your suggestions in the section below:

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Sustainable Practical Medicine!

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Sustainable Practical Medicine! Sam Coffman “The Herbal Medic” Most preppers spend some time thinking about medicine after a social collapse, and stocking up on pharmaceutical supplies, as they should. Food, water and medicine are the first three resources that are fought over after every disaster, large or small. However, pharmaceutical supplies are limited and also … Continue reading Sustainable Practical Medicine!

The post Sustainable Practical Medicine! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

How I Healed An Open Wound Without Stitches

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How I Healed An Open Wound Without Stitches

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While working on my master herbalist degree, my German shepherd mixed breed dog named Ginger ended up with a tumor on her leg. The tumor grew to the size of an orange and was located in the middle of her leg, on the side. An x-ray showed that the tumor was not connected to the bone — a good sign because it had not invaded the bone tissue. It was localized.

I instructed a friend to “rope off the tumor” with a rubber band, tightening the band every day while I was gone on a business trip. She did, and this starved the tumor. When I returned, the tumor looked lifeless and was essentially hanging by a band of tissue.  Ginger then bit it off.

Now I was faced with an open wound. It was large — the entire surface area of an orange. Veterinarians would say that a skin graft was needed to cover the entire area.

I made up an herbal formula with anti-infection herbs and herbs that helped regrow and restore tissue. The herbs I used included cat’s claw, Echinacea, goldenseal, slippery elm and comfrey. The formula was mixed with a little water and then added directly to the wound. After seeing some pus, I changed the strategy to adding the herbs in Ginger’s food and she gladly gobbled them up three times daily.

Learn How To Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

Every two days, there was a visible closing of the wound circumferentially by about one-fourth an inch. Ginger’s body was healing itself, and the herbs were stimulating the healing, just as they were meant to do.

How I Healed An Open Wound Without Stitches

Slipper elm tree. Photo by Milo Pyne / Flickr / Creative Commons / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

The wound finally healed up completely, knitting itself perfectly without any stitches. All the hair grew back, as well, and there was no sign of ever being any type of trauma. Ginger had complete feeling in the area where the wound had been, and she lived another four years, dying at the age of 16.

Which Two Herbs Regenerate Tissue?

The two herbs that help regenerate the skin and tissues are slippery elm and comfrey. In herbal school, our teacher, Dr. Christopher, told stories of how he used these herbs. One slippery elm story was of a little girl who suffered from a completely shattered pelvis.

The girl could not move because of excruciating pain, and back in the 1950s, the roads in Utah were not as well-established as they are now. Many of them were made of rock and gravel and would have caused a lot of jarring to a broken bone. Fractured bones are very susceptible to vibration and the little girl would have suffered a lot of pain during the trip both to and from the hospital. Thus, the family called Dr. Christopher to come out for a house call.

He mixed slippery elm with a little water to make a paste and packed it into the wound after cleaning it; he then covered it. Then the family was instructed to continue packing the moistened herb into the area every day. The body used the nutrients in the slippery elm to rebuild the entire pelvis. It mended perfectly and when the little girl was x-rayed, there was no sign of any fracture at all.

Slippery elm is an herb that is always used by herbalists to provide abundant nutrients and phytonutrients and help reconstruct tissue. Comfrey may be used topically.

Wounds heal when the body has all the right nutrients at the time of the wound. My story of Ginger is a paradigm change for a lot of people. We’ve all been taught that stitches are essential to heal up gaping wounds, and in some cases skin grafts are critical. During a disaster or survival situation, though, stitches and skin grafts may not be accessible. Now you have an alternative way to heal wounds.

*This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or cure any particular health condition. Please first consult with a qualified health professional.

Have you ever tried healing a wound without stitches? Share your tips in the section below:

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Home Remedies for a Toothache

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leo-animal-savannah-teethTeeth are one of the most important parts of the human body, but they are also unfortunately very vulnerable to wear and tear. Regularly in use, teeth are exposed to substances that cause damage, and, can eventually lead to toothaches. It is important to know how to take care of a toothache in the absence of medical professionals and prescription drugs. Fortunately, there are many home remedies for toothaches and plenty of preventive care you can take to avoid toothaches all together.

By Derrick of Prepper Press

First, brush and floss. Doing so now can prevent problems you might not be fully equipped to deal with in an emergency situation down the road. Brushing at least twice a day is the most effective and efficient way to prevent toothaches before they start. Commercial toothpastes can be effective nearly two years after the expiration date listed, and there are ways to make your own toothpaste so you do not have to be dependent on commercial products in the case they are not available or have passed their effective date. A simple paste made out of baking soda and water can make an effective toothpaste, and add some crushed peppermint leaves to flavor it if you prefer.

Essential Oils, Herbs, and Spices

peppermint_tooth_ache_remedyPeppermint does a lot more than add flavor – it can also serve as an effective way to ease a toothache. You can use peppermint essential oil to remedy for a toothache simply by rubbing a bit on the area where the toothache is. A q-tip works well for this application. You can also make a tea of mint leaves, and depending on how severe the toothache is and how you know temperature affects it, drink it either cold or lukewarm.

Related: Five Best DIY Toothache Remedies

Cloves are another effective way to ease a toothache in the absence of dentists and painkillers. Like peppermint, you can use either the essential oil or plant form to treat your pain. Apply clove oil directly to the hurting area with a q-tip, cotton ball, or other like product, or just chew on clove buds to release their healing properties. Cloves are an especially good home remedy for toothaches because they are a source of eugenol, which is an anesthetic and anti-bacterial. If your toothache is being caused by bacteria, cloves and clove oil can not only ease the pain, they can help eradicate the source of the toothache. However, be careful not to put too much clove oil on at once, as it can cause side effects when swallowed. For this reason, if you are treating a child’s toothache, be sure to carefully apply a minimal amount yourself. Don’t let them apply the oil as it would be easy for them to accidentally ingest some of the oil if too large an amount is applied and there is excess to swallow. Like cloves, vanilla extract contains eugenol. If clove oil is too strong for you to handle, try using vanilla instead.

Oregano oil and oregano leaves are another natural remedy for toothaches that is easy to have on hand when medical care might not be available. Oregano has both anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties that help to soothe and combat toothaches. As with other herbal oils, apply it topically to the toothache area using a q-tip or cotton ball.  You can also use crushed up leaves as a paste to apply topically. A mortar and pestle works well for making a paste out of oregano leaves.

garlic_toothache_remedyGarlic also has anti-bacterial properties, and so is useful in fighting a toothache. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, so it soothes the pain while it is helping to heal what is causing the pain. And, as an extra bonus, garlic can also help fight tooth decay. Garlic can be used by simply chewing it. Before you chew the garlic, though, you should rinse it off to ensure it is clean and will not transfer anything into your mouth that could potentially cause further infection or damage. When you have chewed the garlic enough to get juice out of it, at which point you may feel your mouth or tooth go slightly numb, spit out the garlic and rinse with water. Your breath might not be great after chewing on garlic, so you can also try chewing on a peppermint leaf right after the garlic. This will not only freshen your breath, but give you a double-dose of toothache remedies.

For another slightly unpleasant smelling, but effective, toothache remedy try chewing on onions. Like garlic, onions are anti-bacterial. Prepare and chew the onion in the same way as the garlic to treat your toothache.

Ginger is another commonly available spice that can help you deal with the pain of a toothache. It’s also generally helpful to have on hand in any medical supply kit you are compiling, as it also helps with everyday health issues such as nausea and headaches. Ginger can be used as a home remedy for toothaches that have not yet progressed to the point where it is too painful to chew. In order to use ginger for a toothache remedy, you should cut a piece of ginger root, peel the brown skin off, and chew on the peeled piece of ginger. Try to focus your chewing on the tooth where the pain is centered so that the juice from the ginger root gets on and around the tooth and gum area that hurts. You can also try brewing a cup of ginger tea, waiting until it is lukewarm, and swishing it around.

Like ginger, apple cider vinegar is effective both at calming nausea and soothing toothaches. As a result, it is a valuable addition to any medical prep kit. Apple cider vinegar also has a long shelf life – up to five years for peak effectiveness, but is still safe to use, albeit less effective, after that time. To ease a toothache with apple cider vinegar, apply it with a cotton ball or q-tip as you would for essential oils.

If you have it available, a sip of alcohol that you swish around in your mouth before swallowing can help with your tooth pain. Not only will it help you tolerate the pain, but alcohol’s antiseptic properties will help to attack the toothache itself.

Essential oils, bottled goods, and dried herbs and spices need to be stored in a cool, dry place to ensure they are at peak effectiveness. You also need to be aware of the length of time they have been sitting in your stores. After a period of time, the effectiveness of these products can wear off. Thankfully, you can grow many herbs and spices that are useful for toothache home remedies either in a garden or indoors with the proper light. A garden or indoor pots that are carefully maintained to encourage the healthy growth of plants means that even in an emergency you can have fresh food, and a supply of plants that are useful in easing the aches and pains of your body.

Simple Remedies

pexels-photo-30492In addition to essential oils, herbs and spices, there are some simpler home remedies for toothaches. One is as simple as an ice pack. Ice is easy to make if you have a freezer, or even if you simply live in a cold environment. There are also many ice packs available for purchase that you can store and activate when needed if you are in a situation where electric freezers are not an option, if water is at a premium, or if the climate isn’t cooperative. Ice can ease swelling and numb pain, and so is good for easing pain as you fight a toothache caused by bacteria with garlic, oregano, or another plant. When you are using ice, though, you must wrap the ce pack or ice cubes in a cloth or towel before holding it against the painful area. Applying ice directly to the skin can cause burns. When you’re trying to solve one health issue, there’s no need to cause yourself another unnecessarily! You should also be careful not to apply ice for more than 15 minutes at a time, but after a break in the application you can reapply it several times throughout the day.

Read Also: Top 5 Worst Incidences of Martial Law in the United States

Another simple home remedy for a toothache is rinsing your mouth with saltwater. Dissolve a small amount of salt, a teaspoon or so, in warm water, then swish it around in your mouth and spit it out. Repeat a few times until the glass of water is gone, and then repeat again later in the day. Saltwater is effective for fighting toothaches because it’s alkaline, and as such discourages the growth of bacteria that thrive in acidic areas and can cause toothaches. Salt also has healing properties, so if your mouth also has sores or other discomfort, the saltwater will help to expedite the healing process of those and increase the overall health of your mouth.

Take Care of Your Teeth

toothbrush-toothpaste-dental-care-cleanMany of the home remedy options for toothaches are based in supplies that are useful for other medical or health issues, and so should be kept at hand anyway in order to ensure you are prepared for any eventuality. However, toothaches should not be taken lightly as they can lead to infections and further problems. As such, in a situation where professional medical and dental care is not readily available, it becomes especially important that good dental hygiene is practiced in order to stave off tooth decay and tooth pain as much as possible.  You need your teeth to keep the rest of your body healthy, so take care of your teeth, be prepared, and know how to deal with a toothache appropriately.

Derrick Grant is the founder of Prepper Press, a publisher of post-apocalyptic fiction and survival nonfiction. Follow his Facebook writer page for all things dystopian and apocalyptic.

 

The Space-Saving Indoor Garden You Can Easily Build At Home

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The Space-Saving Indoor Garden You Can Easily Build At Home

Image source: https://www.etsy.com/listing/105570964

Living walls are popping up more frequently in home design. These “walls” (which may be an entire wall or just a picture-frame type installation) are often planted with succulents. They are aesthetically stunning and bring a range of advantages into your home, including improved air quality and the buffering of acoustics. They also can lower anxiety and increase attentiveness and productiveness.

What if living walls were reimagined with edible plants like herbs? What if we also could harness all the benefits of growing culinary produce, like saving money and having better-tasting food? Would you do it? After researching how to do it, I know I will! I’m excited to get started.

While it may not be possible to create an actual “living wall” of herbs, due to the size of mature herbs and their growing characteristics, we certainly can create vertical gardens against the walls in our homes.

Depending on how much you want to spend, and how much of a DIYer you are, there are all kinds of options for indoor vertical gardening. You can buy fabric or plastic wall pockets simply to attach to your walls. You can build your own systems from jars or bottles and scraps of lumber. Or you can reach deep inside your wallet and buy a freestanding vertical garden unit.

Fabric Wall Pockets

You know those over-the-door shoe holders, made from a length of fabric with rows of small plastic pockets for your shoes? While you can actually use those for outdoor vertical gardening, they aren’t recommended for indoor use because the fabric isn’t water resistant and would likely The Space-Saving Indoor Garden You Can Easily Build At Homeruin your walls. However, several companies make similar fabric wall pockets specifically for growing plants indoors. Make sure you choose those that are waterproof, or that have reservoirs for retaining water. Wall pockets are an extremely economical choice and they are easy to install. And it’s easy enough to build a wooden frame to attach the pockets to, if you wish to up the style quotient.

Mason Jar Planters

If you have a rustic country-style decor, this will suit your space quite well — and it’s a very easy DIY project. All you need to do is attach heavy-duty stainless steel hose clamps to a strip of lumber. Securely clamp in mason jars, with a clamp encircling the center of each jar, and you are ready to plant.

This New All-Natural Fertilizer Can Double Your Garden Yield!

Start by cutting 1×4 or 1×6 lumber to your desired length. If you want to paint, stain or otherwise prep the lumber, do so before proceeding to the next step, which is screwing on the clamps. Make sure you choose clamps that will fit the circumference of the jars you will be using.

Depending on your space, the board can be hung either vertically or horizontally. Comfortably space the clamps on the board, keeping in mind the size of mature herbs. If your board will be hung vertically, then attach your clamps so that your jars are tilted at about a 45-degree angle. This way, the jar above won’t hinder the herbs’ growth, and the jars can be placed closer together, making better use of your available space.

For a super-economical and eco-friendly version of this project, recycle plastic pop bottles instead of using mason jars. Just cut the tops off the bottles and screw the bottles directly to the board.

Framed Balcony Box Planters

Picture this: a large window-frame type structure — about 6 inches deep and 24 inches across. The height will depend on how many plastic rectangular balcony-style planters you want to place in it. Use cleats on the inside of the vertical pieces to hang your baskets. The planters will be easy to remove from the frame for maintenance or replanting. Cross braces on the back of the frame will strengthen your structure and keep the planters from touching the wall. This type of structure is easy to build, even for those with the most basic carpentry skills, and it is easily customizable to fit your available space. While a pre-fab shelving unit may be easier to put together, you may end up with wasted space surrounding your planters, and the shelves might get damaged by water.

Buying Freestanding Vertical Wall Gardens

If you have the money to spend and you don’t get itchy fingers over DIY projects, there’s a wide assortment of freestanding vertical wall gardens available for purchase. These can be placed against existing walls, or they work beautifully as room dividers. A little Internet research will turn up a slew of these systems.

Building (or buying!) your vertical herb garden structure is just the beginning of the fun. You’ll also need to pick out your herbs. If you’re creating a few smaller gardens, like a couple of wooden mason jar boards, why not create a themed herb garden in each? One could be for Italian herbs, like rosemary, basil, thyme and oregano, and another for tea herbs, like various mints. Whatever you end up doing, have fun, and enjoy using your fresh herbs all winter long.

Have you ever built or planted a wall garden? What advice would you add? Share your tips in the section below:

Bust Inflation With A Low-Cost, High-Production Garden. Read More Here.

20 Unusual Uses For Everyday Herbs

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20 Unusual Uses For Everyday Herbs Herbs are so much more than a garnish. This article will show you 20 unusual uses for everyday herbs… Take these 10 herbs and you’ve got yourself 20 different ways to tackle everyday issues, from keeping mice away to treating the common cold. Herbs are so easy to grow, …

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The post 20 Unusual Uses For Everyday Herbs appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.

Natural Headache Remedies

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headache_human_normal_remediesHeadaches are a part of being human. Some people get them regularly, and others get headaches only rarely. Severity varies from person to person, as does the cause of the headache. Even when only mildly annoying, a headache can affect your ability to function fully and alertly.  If you’re in a situation where Tylenol, aspirin, or prescription pain medication isn’t an option, nor is doing nothing because you have to be focused on taking care of yourself and others, you need to know how to keep a headache at bay.

By Derrick of Prepper Press

Thankfully, there are quite a few natural remedies that can alleviate the pain of a headache. There are also many natural ways to keep headaches from becoming an issue at all, or at least to minimize your risk of being stricken with one. By employing preventative and natural measures, you can successfully reign in the annoyance of headaches without drugs.

Preventative Measures and Action 

hydrated_water_headacheFirst and foremost, stay hydrated. Water is the cure for so many ills, and headaches are no exception. Should you find yourself in a situation where water is scarce, be mindful of what else you are putting in your body to ensure it is not using up valuable water. Salt, alcohol, sugar, and caffeine will dehydrate you. While all of those can initially ease the pain of a headache, they can also put you in danger of further headaches after the initial easing of pain. If water is plentiful, it is the easiest remedy for a headache – and if it’s curing your headache, you’ll likely notice you have more energy and feel more alert as well.

Related: Emergency Foods From Wild Plants

Lack of sleep can be a contributing factor to headaches, as well. In an emergency situation, sleep may be hard to come by, but you should always get as much as you are able to. In fact, studies show that poor sleep contributes to migraines. Even if you don’t end up with a full-blown migraine, lack of sleep and the dull pain of a tension headache are a poor combination that no one wants to deal with. Forcing yourself to be awake does nobody any favors – go to bed early when you are able.

stretching_headache_reliefMild headaches can also be relieved with stretching. Stretching doesn’t require any resources, simply your own energy and a little bit of space. The first section of your body you’ll want to focus on is your shoulders. Are they lifted up and tight? Let them drop and let out a deep breath. You may notice a difference from just this as your muscles loosen up. A stretch nearly as simple is to straighten up your neck, look straight ahead, and then put your chin down. Look back up, then go left, right, then back, finally returning your chin to the front. Put your chin down on your chest again, and gently roll left to right, keeping your child down while doing this. Repeat until you feel loosened up. Doing these stretches relieves headache-causing pressure from your nerves.

Another way to relieve tension that requires no medicine and simple household objects is to bite down on something – a pen or pencil, for example. Doing so will cause you to use certain muscles that become tight, leading to tension headaches. You might feel silly trying this out, but that won’t matter if you can get rid of a tension headache without worrying about how to find pain relief medication.

Many common herbs and spices can also ease the pain of a headache. However, if you are planning on storing these be aware of how long they have been stored for. Many herbs and essential oils do have somewhat short shelf lives and may lose their efficacy. Be sure to store them properly to get as much use out of them as possible, too.

What herbs can help alleviate a headache?

chocolate_mint_headachesPeppermint is an herb with soothing qualities, and its scent can help to calm nerves and relieve tension, thus lessening your headache. You can boil some water with peppermint leaves and make a peppermint tea to drink (or, if you have them available, use ready-made peppermint teabags). You may also notice that the tea has a strong scent – that’s good, and you should breath it in as you drink the tea. Or, simply breathe in the scent of the steam from your hot tea without even drinking the tea. The strong scent of peppermint alone can relieve tension and ease headaches. You can also use peppermint essential oil to soothe a headache; just rub a small amount on your temples. Dried peppermint has a fairly long shelf life – up to three years, and the essential oil lasts about four years if kept in a cool, dry space.

Feverfew is a famous and oft-cited herb for combatting migraines. It can not only help to lessen the intensity of a migraine once it starts, but has also been credited with preventing the headaches before they start. If you are a regular sufferer of migraines, you might find it worth your while to get a supply of feverfew supplements to keep on hand in case you are in a situation where you don’t have access to your prescription migraine medicine anymore. Additionally, you can grow feverfew either inside (if you have a grow light or a very sunny window) or outside. It’s fairly easy to grow, so if you or someone in your family gets regular migraines it is certainly worth trying to keep a plant. It’s a perennial, so you won’t have to replant every single year, and you’ll have a regular supply of fresh feverfew leaves to help with headache relief. The fresh leaves from the plants can be chewed, about two at a time, to relieve and/or prevent headaches. Some people even include the leaves with their regular meals, in a salad or on a sandwich. Be cautious, though, as if you are new to using feverfew you will want to ensure you are not one of those who experiences swelling of the mouth area from chewing the leaves. Some people also have gastrointestinal issues associated with use of the herb, so try it out cautiously as you first begin using this remedy.

Read Also: Easier Gardening

Cayenne is a spice that you can put to good use as a headache remedy. Commonly available, this spice works to relieve headaches because it contains capsaicin, a pain inhibitor. Using cayenne as a natural remedy is easy enough – just mix a bit (about 1/2 teaspoon or so) with water to dilute the spice, then take a cotton swab, dip it in the mixture, and very gently dab the inside of your nostril with the swab. It’ll be uncomfortable, but as the slight burning sensation subsides, so will your headache. Like most other herbs and spices, dry cayenne pepper has a shelf life of about three years, and should be stored in a dry, cool place. If you have cayenne pepper older than three years, just test it out by giving it a quick sniff – if it doesn’t smell of anything, it’s lost its effectiveness, but if it still has a strong scent, go ahead and use it. You’ll be able to tell pretty easily if it’s still potent.

ginger_plant_headachesGinger is another go-to spice for pain relief. Using ginger to relieve your headaches is pretty simple – steep some fresh ginger root to make a tea, either by itself or with lemon juice. Chewing on some ginger might also help ease side effects of more severe headaches like nausea. You can also grow ginger at home, either outdoors if you live in a warm climate, or indoors in a pot or tub. Doing so will provide you with a supply of fresh ginger root to use not only for headaches, but for a variety of other ailments as well.

Like ginger, apple cider vinegar is can provide relief from many aches, pains, and ills. It has a longer effective shelf life than dry herbs and spices, as it lasts about five years at full potency. After that time, it’s still probably safe, just not as effective. Be sure when you’re storing it that the cap is always screwed on tightly and it’s in a cool, dry place. To use apple cider vinegar as a remedy for headaches, you have a couple of options. You can boil it with water, at about a 1:1 ratio, then breath in the steam from the concoction. If you want to trap the steam as you do this, drape a towel over your head to fully immerse yourself in the scent. You can also mix a small amount of apple cider vinegar with water and drink the mixture. Be cautious of how much apple cider vinegar you are using, as it is very strong and as little as two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar mixed with a cup of water can be effective. To temper the taste of the vinegar, you can also add lemon, honey, or both to the mixture. Lemon has its own therapeutic properties that you might find to be beneficial, and if the headache is accompanied by a head cold, honey can help to soothe your throat.

Adapting to Your Situation

aspirin_old_ad_headachesIn the modern world, it is very easy to reach for an aspirin to cure your headache. If none is available, though, there is a plant found in nature that is nearly equivalent to aspirin in how it treats headaches – the bark of a willow tree. It’s active ingredient is salicin, and the bark is also useful in treating pains other than headaches, including lower back pain. If you live in an area where willow trees grow, identify one, cut a square of bark, and boil it to make a tea. But of course, as with any other herb or plant, if you are not completely sure, don’t ingest anything from it! You can also simply, but carefully, chew on the bark. Be aware that you are not swallowing any splinters of the bark, though – just the saliva that now has the salicin from the bark in it.

As you can see, nature is bountiful when it comes to headache remedies. While those who suffer from the most severe of migraines may not be able to fully feel the relief of modern prescription pain medications, there are ways to mediate the pain should there be no such medication available. For the more mild headaches that everyone gets, but that still interfere with the ability to fully function, simple steps like drinking more water, getting more sleep, and stretching can help to prevent and relieve the pain. Herbs and plants that are commonly available are highly effective in relieving headaches, and make a valuable addition to any medical storage and preparing you may be doing. While modern medicine has its perks, there are other options and with the right supplies and knowledge you won’t have to suffer even if you don’t have access to prescriptions and technologically-enhanced medical facilities.

Derrick Grant is the founder of Prepper Press, a publisher of post-apocalyptic fiction and survival nonfiction. Follow his Facebook writer page for all things dystopian and apocalyptic.

Holiday Herbal Gifts Part 3 “Salts”

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Holiday Herbal Gifts Part 3 “Salts” Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Audio in player below! Wrapping up this series on herbal gifts, the focus is on salts. Salts of various types make great, quick, natural, and non-toxic, handmade gifts. Best of all, they are easy. By definition, a salt any chemical compound formed from the … Continue reading Holiday Herbal Gifts Part 3 “Salts”

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Handmade Herbal Gifts: Part Two

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Handmade Herbal Gifts: Part Two Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Audio in player below! This week, we are continuing with part two of the 3-part handmade Herbal Gifts series that begun last week. (See last week’s description below.) Tonight I’m sharing ideas for salves, lotions, aftershave, beard oil, bath salts, and magnesium oil. From last … Continue reading Handmade Herbal Gifts: Part Two

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How to Make An Attention-Grabbing, Festive Culinary Wreath

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How to Make An Attention-Grabbing, Festive Culinary Wreath

Photo: Jacki Andre

You’ve worked hard growing herbs and vegetables. Why not show off your bounty as a beautiful wreath? Culinary wreaths can be created in a variety of ways. Most start with a base of herbs and may include other small produce — like garlic bulbs or small peppers — for visual interest. Culinary wreaths smell amazing and offer a unique way to access your herbs while cooking.

How to Make An Attention-Grabbing, Festive Culinary Wreath

Photo: Jacki Andre

If you use fresh herbs, they will start to dry fairly quickly on the wreath form. The best fresh herbs for this project are those with woody stems and small leaves, like rosemary, thyme, tarragon, marjoram and oregano. They will be easier to attach to the wreath form and will keep the wreath shape better than those with soft stems and larger leaves, which will droop as they dry. If you’re fortunate enough to live in a zone where bay laurel is hardy, or if you have a bay laurel tree growing indoors, bay leaves work great, too.

Looking For Non-GMO Herb Seeds? Get Them From A Family-Owned Company You Can Trust!

However, I was doing this project on a deadline, with no time to grow a bay tree. I just used what I had available — and I’m pretty happy with the result. Don’t be afraid to try different types of herbs on your own wreath.

All you will need are a wire wreath form and floral tape. Depending on what you are using to create your wreath, you also may find twist ties, thin twine or thread handy. You may want some ribbon on hand to create a hanger, or just a pretty bow. As far as tools go, kitchen shears are all you need.

I started by attaching the herbs with the biggest leaves first. Simply strip the leaves off the bottom 2-3 inches of the stem and securely wrap the stem against the wreath form, using the floral tape. A tip I learned the hard way is that it’s better to use more floral tape than you think you need. If you don’t have enough tape, it will unwind on its own. If you are using herbs with softer stems, be gentle with the stems as you wrap them.

How to Make An Attention-Grabbing, Festive Culinary Wreath

Photo: Jacki Andre

Once the herbs with the biggest leaves are secured to the wreath form, start filling in the gaps with smaller herbs. Take care not to crush the ones that are already attached to the form. For much of the project, I simply stood the wreath on my lap and rested the back of it against the table edge. But once I could no longer keep it on my lap without crushing the herbs, I hung up the wreath.

It can be a little awkward to work on your wreath while it’s hanging, but a big plus is that it’s easier to see which areas need to be filled out more. As you work, cram in as many herbs as you can. You might also want to bunch two or three stems together as you tape them onto the form, to create a nice full wreath. Remember that as the herbs dry, they will shrink, so the more that you can attach, the better.

Once you are happy with your herb base, get creative and add in other produce for visual interest. I used twist ties to attach garlic bulbs, and thread to attach red Thai peppers (which, to be honest, I bought at the supermarket). Depending on what kind of herbs your wreath is made from, other possible embellishments include cinnamon sticks, a string of cranberries, dried orange slices, and flowers or Chinese lantern pods.

Once you are happy with your finished product, hang it up in your kitchen and get ready to pull off pinches of dried herbs as needed. Your wreath will be beautiful, practical and a point of pride, because you grew the herbs and created the wreath yourself. That’s the best kind of project, don’t you think?

What advice would you add? Share it in the section below:

Bust Inflation With A Low-Cost, High-Production Garden. Read More Here.

Free Manuals to Download on Survival and Edible Plants

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Free Manuals to Download on Survival and Edible Plants via Preparedness Advice

Everybody likes to get something for free and here’s a huge collection of free manuals for you to download. I have not had a chance to review all of them so I can’t say that everything they suggest is accurate. Many of them are hundreds of pages long, so take your time reviewing them and making note of the books or pages in books that you may want to print out.

Urban Preparation Kit, Part 1, On Body Kit

Traps and Snares

Wilderness Survival Skills

Surviving Terrorism

Wilderness Survival

Survival Water Purification

Preserving Game Meats

Nuclear War Survival Skills

How to Build a Debris Hut

HHS Pandemic Influenza Plan

Combat Survival Evasion

Cold Weather Survival: A Way of Life

Cold Weather Survival

Camp Life in the Woods and the Tricks of Trapping and Trap Making

Alpine Living for SAR

Aids to Survival

Woodstravel

FM 21-76 US ARMY SURVIVAL MANUAL

Survival In Cold Weather Areas

Survival, Evasion and Recovery

NEWER US Army Survival Manual

Marines Individual Terrorism Survival

USMC Winter Survival Course

Wilderness Evasion: A Guide to Hiding Out and Eluding Pursuit in Remote Areas

USMC Summer Survival Course

Free Manuals on Edible & Medicinal Plants

WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants

WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants Volume 2

WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants Volume 3

WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants Volume 4

Useful Wild Plants of the United States and Canada

Survival Medicine

Survival: How to Make Herbal Preparations

Edible Medicinal Plants

Medicinal Plants in Folk Tradition

PDR for Herbal Medicines

Healing Pets With Alternative Medicine

Ethnobotany of the Forest Indians

Edible Wild Plants

Edible and Medicinal Plants

Plant Powers, Poisons, and Herb Craft

A Taste of Heritage: Crow Indian Recipes & Herbal Medicine

Common Edible Mushrooms — Be careful here. It’s recommended that you never eat a wild mushroom without personal instruction with an expert forager/herbalist.

A Complete Handbook of Nature Cure

pc-iceberg

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Handmade Herbal Gifts

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Handmade Herbal Gifts Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Listen in player below! Calling all DIYers! Want some ideas for frugal, quick-to-make holiday gifts? You still have time to to make loads of handmade, natural, herbal gifts. Be sure to listen to Herbal Prepper Live this Sunday to learn how. The herbal crafts I’m covering require … Continue reading Handmade Herbal Gifts

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DIY: A Heal-Anything, Indoor Herbal Tea Garden

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DIY: A Heal-Anything, Indoor Herbal Tea Garden

Image source: Pixabay.com

What could be better than curling up with a nice hot cup of herbal tea when the weather turns brisk? I’ll tell you what – curling up with a nice hot cup of tea that you cultivated and prepared yourself! While growing the actual tea plant (Camellia sinensis) is typically best left to those who live in zone 8 or warmer, there are many herbal plants that make wonderful non-caffeinated beverages that are easy to grow – even indoors.

Herbal teas – technically called tisanes – are not only delicious and soothing, but many of them also have a number of health benefits. (More on that in a moment.)

Growing and blending your own herbal teas is also a wonderful way to express your creativity using various parts (leaves, flowers and buds) of different herbs. Herbs may be used fresh or dried – and homemade herbal teas also can make a great gift.

Need Non-GMO Herb Seeds? The Best Deals Are Right Here …

While the herbs discussed below may be grown either outdoors or indoors, growing your own indoor herbal tea garden has the advantage of allowing you access to fresh herbs during the coldest months of the year – which is often the time we crave a nice hot relaxing beverage the most!

Starting Your Indoor Herbal Tea Garden

Begin by deciding which types of herbs you wish to grow. Below are just a few of the different herbs that you may want to consider growing:

1. Lavender – easy to grow on a sunny windowsill, lavender is well-known for its beautiful fragrance. It has a spicy floral flavor and has a calming effect.

2. Chamomile – these tiny, white flowers are wonderful as a sleep aid and help calm an upset stomach. They will give a slight apple scent to your homemade teas.

3. Mint – mint tea is excellent for soothing an upset stomach or even helping with menstrual cramps. It will give your tea a refreshing and peppery flavor.

4. Bergamot – the herb that gives Earl Grey tea its distinctive flavor, this plant produces purple flowers with a citrus taste. It is also easy to grow indoors since it can do well in either full side or partial shade.

DIY: A Heal-Anything, Indoor Herbal Tea Garden

Image source: Pixabay.com

5. Rosemary – while you may think of this herb as one to flavor savory dishes with, it can also be used in herbal teas. Rosemary has been used as a medicinal plant for thousands of years as has been proven to be effective in aiding indigestion and recently has shown promise in boosting brain function.

6. Lemon verbena – this plant can do well indoors, assuming it has very good drainage. Lemon verbena is said to be excellent in helping with weight management, reducing inflammation and clearing up congestion.

7. Anise – If you enjoy the taste of black licorice, you will definitely want to include anise (not star anise) in your indoor tea garden. The licorice flavor comes from seeds produced in the plant’s white flowers. Anise tea may be used as a home remedy for digestive problems, such as nausea and indigestion.

8. Marjoram – this plant has a slightly fruity and sour flavor that can add an interesting dynamic to your tea. It is good for various digestive complaints, such as intestinal gas and poor appetite.

9. Stevia – if you like a bit of sweetness to your tea but are trying to cut down on your sugar intake, you will want to include stevia in your herb garden. Stevia adds a punch of sweetness to your brew without the extra calories and is considered safe for diabetics.

For each herb that you plant, you also will want to select the appropriate size of container. If you are starting your plants from seed, you must choose a well-balanced soil and keep containers in a warm place until they germinate. As a general rule, you will want to ensure that each plant receives at least six hours of sunlight a day, so be sure to keep them near a windowsill or other suitable spot. Grow lights also are an option.

Harvesting Your Herbs

Herbs may be harvested at any time, but many people find that the flavor is at its fullest when the plant is in bud. To make your herbal teas, you may use the plant’s leaves, buds or petals. A tisane may be made from a single type of herb, or you may flex your creative muscles and experiment with blends.

Preparing Your Herbal Tea

Herbal teas may be made with fresh or dry herbs. If using fresh herbs, harvest the parts of the plant that you wish to use and then crush them between your fingers. Doing so will help to release both flavor and scent. Using a strainer or tea ball, place 2 teaspoons of fresh herbs into 8 ounces of hot water and let steep for 3-5 minutes.

If you wish to use dried herbs, harvest your herbs and either hang them to dry or dry them in a dehydrator before storing in an airtight container. When you are ready to make your tea, steep 1 teaspoon in 8 ounces of hot water for 3-5 minutes.

If you love growing your own food, and you also enjoy herbal teas and experimenting with different flavors, then why not combine those interests and start your very own indoor herbal tea garden this winter?

What advice would you add on growing herbs indoors? Share your tips in the section below:  

Are You Making These Common, Avoidable Gardening Mistakes? Read More Here.

For the love of Garlic

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Garlic contained many vital nutrients including vitamins, amino acids, and enzymes. On top of that garlic is also delicious and very healthy, for internal and external use.

Garlic contains the amino acid Allicin, that gives Garlic that potent smell from the sulfur compounds. Allicin is one of the primary components of garlic that gives it its healthy benefits.

Eating garlic raw is more beneficial than cooking garlic, if you can get past the taste. When garlic is cut or chewed and allowed exposure to the air for at least 5 to 10 minutes, the compound Allicin to fully activated. However when garlic is cooked the Allicin is inactivated and not able to produce.

Garlic contains high amounts of antioxidants
Garlic helps lower your cholesterol
Garlic is antibacterial
Garlic is antifungal
Garlic helps thin the blood
Garlic boost your immune system
Study suggests that garlic may help prevent blood clots
Garlic help lower your blood pressure
Garlic helps with joint pain, and osteoporosis
Garlic help prevents some cancer

images

Garlic is both immune boosting and antimicrobial meaning it can fight viral and bacterial infections. The best way to use garlic is to put it into your diet either cooked or eaten raw, garlic benefits are numerous.

Garlic used for many conditions related to the heart and blood system. Garlic has also been used to prevent certain cancers: rectal, stomach, breast, prostate, and bladder.
Garlic has also used for earaches, menstrual disorders, hepatitis, shortness of breath, liver disease, fighting numerous infections, and many skin conditions (ringworm, jock itch, athlete’s foot)
Other uses for garlic include fighting fevers, coughs, headaches, stomachache, sinus congestion, gout, joint pain, hemorrhoids, asthma, bronchitis, and a host of other treatments.

          Word of warning on garlic

Check with your doctor to see if it affects any of your medications.
Do not take garlic if you have bleeding disorders, stomach or digestive problems, low blood pressure or getting ready for surgery.
Women who are breast-feeding may want to stay away from garlic as it may change the flavor of the milk they produce.
Possibly unsafe when applying garlic to your skin may cause skin irritation and some people.
Birth control pills, taking garlic along with birth-control pills may decrease the effectiveness.
Liver medications, check with your doctor.
Medications for blood clotting, check with your doctor
Heart medications, check with your doctor

Whether store-bought or harvested from the wild, garlic is a wonderful herb for us to explore and use. The culinary uses and the health benefits are astounding. I implore you to add garlic to your healthful herbs, and learn more on its benefits and uses, on your own.

And hey, it also fight against vampires!

Written by Rich, for aroundthecabin.com

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Herbal Steams for Cold and Flu Season

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Herbal Steams for Cold and Flu Season Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Listen in player below! This week, I’m talking about herbal steams for the cold and flu season. Cold and flu season is roughly October through May, with a peak in February. I talk about herbal medicine for respiratory infections periodically throughout the season. Herbal … Continue reading Herbal Steams for Cold and Flu Season

The post Herbal Steams for Cold and Flu Season appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Herbs for Seasonal Cleanse

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A lot of people ask about removing toxins from their bodies or a body cleanse. One of the best things you can to to help your body out is to eat foods and herbs, that are in season.

Here in the United States, we are lucky enough to receive foods from all over the world. Food is shipped in from the southern hemisphere and Europe, from Asia and the Middle East. What I try to eat is food that has been grown local, raised local, or harvested locally.

So my suggestion is to eat local and eat what is in season.

Most people also need to concentrate on drinking more water. Drinking more water helps increase blood volume, and helps to get the lymphatic fluids throughout the body moving. This will help wash your cells and clean fluids, that have built up, and aid in the removal of waste from the body. Basically, a “super flush” going on through your body.

We also want to focus on the gallbladder and the liver cleansing both of them.

Herbs that we can use to clean up the gallbladder and liver are:
artichokes
burdock
dandelions
turmeric
yellow dock
peppermint
milk thistle

These herbs are common throughout most United States and available for most of the year. There are more out there but these are the basics.

Using these herbs in teas, and leave or roots in foods, will help your body to get your blood flowing and your digestive juices moving.

Here we should also mention that you need to have your bowels moving at least once a day. Also check with your doctor before taking any of these herbs if you’re not already taking them, to check that they do not cause problems with any of your medications. (safety first)

If after all this you are still having problems check with your local natural foods store, and/or Dr. They may have a mild laxative formula that will aid you.

Written by Rich, for aroundthecabin.com

The post Herbs for Seasonal Cleanse appeared first on WWW.AROUNDTHECABIN.COM.

Herbalist Katja Swift Interview!

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Herbalist Katja Swift Interview Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Listen in player below! This week on Herbal Prepper Live, I will be chatting with Boston-based herbalist Katja Swift. Katja, along with Ryn Midura, founded the CommonWealth Center for Herbal Medicine in Boston, Massachusetts. Katja is the center’s Director of Education.  From Katja’s bio on the … Continue reading Herbalist Katja Swift Interview!

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Stress, Cooler Heads Will Prevail

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Cooler Heads Will Prevail Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Listen in player below! All about calming, nervine and adaptogenic herbs. People underestimate the impact stress has on their health. People do not make their best decisions when under stress. Stress prompts us to act without thinking. If we are anxious, if we panic, if we … Continue reading Stress, Cooler Heads Will Prevail

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Calendula Herbal Recipes for Health & Gifts

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Calendula herbal recipes to make at home | PreparednessMama

Don’t miss growing this old-fashioned favorite. A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to go plant shopping at a local nursery with a friend and we stumbled upon the humble Calendula officinalis plant. She had never heard of it, probably because it is hard to find at nurseries. It has such wonderful healing properties, that […]

The post Calendula Herbal Recipes for Health & Gifts appeared first on PreparednessMama.

The 3-Ingredient Ancient Home Remedy Used During The Time Of Christ

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The 3-Ingredient Ancient Home Remedy Used During The Time Of Christ

Pliny the Younger, the author and politicians of the late 2nd century – meaning it likely was used during the time of Christ.

Raw vinegar is full of antioxidants and is a natural probiotic, but it’s also been shown to sooth sore throats, improve digestion, reduce cholesterol, help guard against cancer and maintain a healthy weight. As a natural antibiotic, it can help clear out your throat and digestive system of harmful pathogens, allowing you get better faster. Raw cider vinegar has also been shown to help the body absorb nutrients from the foods you eat.

Just 30 Grams Of This Survival Superfood Provides More Nutrition Than An Entire Meal!

The 3-Ingredient Ancient Home Remedy Used During The Time Of Christ

Image source: Pixabay.com

Raw honey is a nutrient powerhouse, full of antioxidants, minerals and enzymes that promote health and wellness. It’s used throughout the world for its antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties, as well as an immune system booster. Research shows that it can be just as effective as commercial cough syrup in treating coughs and sore throats. Taken regularly, raw honey can act as an allergy shot to reduce your sensitivity to pollen and allergens in your environment over time.

The herbs used in oxymel vary based on your goals, but in general, they’re often herbs designed to improve your immune response, or address a respiratory condition such as cough, cold, flu or sore throat. Whichever herbs you choose, do your homework, and make sure they reflect your needs, and the needs of your family; great choices include sage, thyme, rosemary, oregano, mint, Echinacea, ginger, elecampane, fennel, garlic, mullein, hyssop, wild cherry bark and horseradish.  Sweeter nutrient-rich and health-promoting fruits are sometimes included, as well, including elderberries or sea berries.

One famous version, referred to as “fire cider,” is made with ginger, garlic, cayenne and horseradish. Other times, elderberry, ginger and Echinacea are combined for immune support. Another mixture is a cough syrup/respiratory blend that includes wild cherry bark, elecampane root, rose hips, ginger, slippery elm bark and peppermint.

Pre-mixed remedies sell in health food stores and online for as much as $5 per ounce, but can be mixed at home for pennies and a little patience. Recipes vary widely, but a common formula includes 1 part dried herbs steeped in 2 parts honey and 2 parts vinegar. Leave in a cool dark place for at least a month, and then strain. Feel free to use more honey if your tastes require a sweeter version to overcome the herb flavors you’ve chosen, or if you simply have trouble with vinegar.  Likewise, recipes with up to 5 parts vinegar and 1 part honey are also acceptable for those who like a little extra zing in their medicine.

‘Miracle Oil Maker’ Lets You Make Fresh Nut Oils Within Minutes!

Some people choose to steep the honey with the herb in one jar, and then the vinegar with the herb in a separate jar, only mixing them at the end. That way, they can have an infused honey and an infused vinegar which also have a variety of uses, and they don’t have to commit all of the infusion to being an oxymel mixture.

While they’re generally pleasant to use on their own as a medicine by simply taking them on a spoon as you would a cough syrup, they can also be incorporated into meals to turn your food into medicine. Oxymel is a great way to enjoy sweetness without negative effects on your blood sugar. Raw vinegar has also been shown to balance blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity in diabetics, which will help to balance out the effects of the honey on your system. With that in mind, these medicines make a great addition to cold sparkling water to make a medicinal spritzer, or when used to top a salad as a sweet and tangy dressing. Recipes using sweet herbs (such as elderberry) make excellent pancake syrups or yogurt/dessert toppings.

However you choose to take your oxymel, know that you’re participating in a medicinal tradition that goes back millennia, and taking your health into your own hands by crafting your own homemade medicine.

Have you ever made or used oxymel? What advice would you add? Share it in the section below:

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

Your Herbal and Prepping Questions Answered Live

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Your Herbal and Prepping Questions Answered Live Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Listen to this show below! It’s time for another, “Ask Cat” episode on Herbal Prepper Live! I’m taking your questions live on air this Sunday (9/25/16). Call in with all of your herbal, sustainable health, and prepping questions, or type your questions into … Continue reading Your Herbal and Prepping Questions Answered Live

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1800s Medical Cures That Still Work Today

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1800s Medical Cures That Still Work Today

Once upon a time, more than two-thirds of all Americans lived in rural towns or extensive farms. Indoor plumbing was unheard of, homes were heated with wood and lit by kerosene or oil lamps, work was hard and diseases were plenty.

Should we find ourselves back in these precarious times – or we simply prefer natural remedies — we might find it beneficial to know what types of herbs, medicines and common practices were the tool of the trade for the 19th century doctor.

Keep in mind that there were no vaccines, no lab tests and no antibiotics. Hospitals were located in large cities and surgery was reserved for extreme cases. Doctors traveled for miles on horseback to treat their patients, and payment was generally a hot meal and a place to sleep, and perhaps a hog or some chickens for the doctor to keep or sell as he liked.

Almost all treatments were done right in the home, or outdoors where the light was good. There certainly were times when the doctor knew that his patient would not survive, but he tried his best, knowing that if nothing else, the family would feel better, believing that they had done all they could.

Let’s take a look inside that black bag of medicine and find out what doctors used pre-pharmaceutical times.

Treatments and Research

If you were fortunate, your doctor was up to date with the medical research of the times, such as books by University of New York doctor William Thomson. Otherwise, your local doctor might have relied on Buchan’s Domestic Medicine, which relied on herbal treatments.

With no antibiotics and very little understanding of how diseases worked, gargles, “tonics,” hot baths or steam baths were often recommended. Doctors tended to treat the symptoms, rather than the disease, due to lack of knowledge.

Fast, All-Natural Pain Relief With No Nasty Side Effects!

Doctors understood very little about bacteria, but they were aware that there were tiny organisms that could be seen under a microscope. These could be transferred from one patient to another. So while they may not have fully understood how they worked, doctors began working with “disinfectants” in the later part of the 1800s. Common disinfectants were chlorine, lime, sulfur and charcoal.

Common Herbal Treatments

Without the use of any real working drugs, doctors relied heavily on herbal remedies. Many doctors continued to add to their skills by learning from medicine men of the indigenous people, as well as from women who often passed their knowledge on from generation to generation and the slaves brought from Africa, who also contributed their knowledge of healing herbs and plants.

Fortunately, doctors had many pain relievers available to them at this time, including aspirin (which they made from the bark of willow trees). There were fever reducers made from the feverfew plant, as well from meadowsweet.

Camphor was known to ease itchy skin. It was also commonly used to prevent infection by washing the wound with a solution made from camphor, or soaking bandages in the solution, then wrapping the wound.

1800s Medical Cures That Still Work Today

Image source: Pixabay.com

Opium was known to stop diarrhea almost instantly, and cathartics were from a wide variety of plants, such as milkweed or bloodroot.

Most of these types of medicines were used to make the patient as comfortable as possible, while nature took its course and the patient could heal on his own.

Other treatments including apple pectin, which was mixed in juice to stop arthritis, and honey, which was used as a face wash and a treatment for most insect stings.

Tea and compresses made from cloths soaked in tea were often used to wash everything from hair to burns to wounds.

Some treatments are still used today, such as baking soda to brush the teeth or ease indigestion. Castor oil was used for everything from a general health tonic to a chest compress for coughs and colds. Salt was used as a gargle for sore throats. It worked then and still works today.

Herbs and ‘Female’ Problems

It was very common in the 1800s for women to treat other women with herbs and remedies that have been passed down for generations. Midwives were often called upon to deliver babies as well as to help with what was called “female problems.”

1800s Medical Cures That Still Work Today

Image source: Pixabay.com

Teas made from motherwort were often used to “calm the nerves.” This is a mild sedative and it works remarkably well.

Painful menstruation was often treated with a tea of red raspberry leaves. This was also the same treatment for infertility. Excessive bleeding was treated with shepherd’s purse. Labor pains were treated with blue cohosh while menopause was treated with black cohosh.

New ‘Survival Herb Bank’ Gives You Access to God’s Amazing Medicine Chest

Women suffering from fainting spells were often given a large tablespoon of vinegar. Bladder infections were cured with calendula tea, and chamomile tea was used for just about everything that ailed women, from menopause to insomnia.

Treatments We’d Rather Forget

You can’t talk about the history of medicine without speaking about some of the items and practices that will make you shudder today.

Mercury was used for almost 500 years as a common elixir that was supposed to rejuvenate the body. It was also a popular “cure” in the 19th century for sexually transmitted diseases such as syphilis. While mercury probably did kill off the infection, it generally killed the patient as well, most likely from kidney or liver damage.

In fact, let’s not forget that during most of the 1800s, there were no laws in place as to who could call themselves a doctor. Massachusetts passed the first license laws in 1819 but then repealed them in 1835. It wasn’t really until after the civil war that states got serious about licensing doctors.

Tuberculosis (called consumption in those times) was a terrible condition with no cure. Most doctors simply recommended bed rest and to move to a drier climate.

Other treatments, such as those for colic, didn’t need the doctor anyway.

A common “remedy” for colic was to close all the windows and doors to the baby’s room, and have daddy smoke his cigar or pipe right outside the door. (Can’t help but wonder how that one worked!)

Cures for colds and the flu were varied, but included drinking rabbit dung tea. We don’t suggest trying that one, no matter how dire the situation!

What old-time remedies would you add to this list? Share your tips in the section below:

If You Like All-Natural Home Remedies, You Need To Read Everything That Hydrogen Peroxide Can Do. Find Out More Here.

Lemon Verbena Simple Syrup

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Preserve the harvest with lemon verbena simple syrup | PreparednessMama

Today I’m making lemon verbena simple syrup as a quick way to preserve my harvest.  Lemon verbena is my favorite herb. It smells wonderfully fresh and inviting. I think it has the best lemon fragrance, even better than lemon balm, and right up there with fresh lemon. I planted a lemon verbena hedge of twelve […]

The post Lemon Verbena Simple Syrup appeared first on PreparednessMama.

Women’s Preparedness: Part 2- Just the Herbs

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Women’s Preparedness: Part 2- Just the Herbs Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” What herbal remedies do women preppers, and the men who love them, need to have in their supplies? Part two of our discussion on women’s preparedness needs is all about herbs and natural remedies for women’s health. Herbs to be covered in this … Continue reading Women’s Preparedness: Part 2- Just the Herbs

The post Women’s Preparedness: Part 2- Just the Herbs appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

DIY Liquid Herbal Bath Soap

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This easy DIY herbal bath soap is ready in minutes and uses herbs you already have at home. Makes a great frugal gift | PreparednessMama

My vegetable garden may not have produced very well this year, but the herbs went wild. I’ve preserved lemon verbena, lavender, lemon balm, calendula, and mint – just to name a few. I like to use these to make fabulous frugal gifts that my friends love. Who says a gift has to be expensive! This […]

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How to Dehydrate Cilantro for a Steady Supply

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Preserve the harvest by Dehydrating Cilantro | PreparednessMama

It’s been a hot summer in Texas with temperatures at 90° and above for months now. That means that I’ve not been able to grow lettuce, spinach, or cilantro in my garden. It’s too darn hot for those cool weather crops. Sometimes though, you just need a bit of cilantro to freshen up a dish. […]

The post How to Dehydrate Cilantro for a Steady Supply appeared first on PreparednessMama.

Women in Preparedness!

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Women in Preparedness: Both Men & Women Need to Know Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” If you are a woman or know a woman, which should be about everyone, you’ll want to listen to this episode. Preppers are comfortable discussing blood in the context of bullet wounds or lacerations. By some bizarre sorcery, when blood is part … Continue reading Women in Preparedness!

The post Women in Preparedness! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

The Dirt-Free, Space-Saving Way To Grow Indoor Tomatoes

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Image source: Amber Bogdanowicz

Image source: Amber Bogdanowicz

Growing herbs and vegetables in the home sounds like a great idea until you think about all the mess, dirt and constant watering that must be done to grow and keep them alive.

Avoid all of this by growing them in a jar of water – without dirt! This process is a more convenient set-up that takes up little space in comparison to growing in soil. You even can grow tomatoes.

Growing vegetables and herbs in a jar has a number of benefits:

  • Enhanced aesthetic quality.
  • Can observe the roots growing.
  • Preserved flavor.
  • Less mess.
  • Saves space.
  • Easy to grow.
  • Little watering.
  • You start with cuttings, not seeds.

You will need a few things to start your plants in a jar:

  1. Water (rainwater or tap water left to air overnight — not chlorinated water).
  2. Containers (Mason jars, any glass bottles, plastic bottles). Narrow-mouthed containers are great for support.
  3. Plant cuttings (6-inch tips).
  4. Organic fertilizer

Step 1: Prep plant cuttings.

Start by removing the lower leaves from cuttings and trim the lower tips close to where the roots arise. Rinse.

Step 2: Prep container.

Clean your container well, making sure there are no chemicals in there or anything dangerous.

Step 3: Get some water.

Get some clean, fresh water. Tap water isn’t good for plants because of the trace metals and other chemicals found in it. In general, the plants will respond to it negatively. Fresh rainwater is preferred. Add organic fertilizer.

Image source: Amber Bogdanowicz

Image source: Amber Bogdanowicz

Step 4: Assemble.

  1. Add your cuttings to your container.
  2. Take your container and add your freshwater up to around the neck of the jar. The main idea is to fill it up to cover most of the stem, but you do not want to fill it up so much that it soaks the leaves. Your cuttings will rot if the leaves sit stagnant in water.
  3. Sit your jar in an area that either receives sun or doesn’t, depending on the sun requirements unique to your plant. Example: If you are growing mint in a jar with water, make sure to place it somewhere that receives plenty of sun!

Step 5: Maintenance.

Once you’ve assembled your plant in a jar, change the water once a week without disturbing the cuttings too much.

Looking For Non-GMO Seeds? Get Them From A Company You Can Trust!

Within 2-6 weeks, the cuttings will generally begin to grow; however, woody plants do take longer.

Herbs and Vegetables to Grow in the Water

I would argue that you can grow almost anything this way. I have even grown a succulent plant successfully in water from a tip that fell off one of my larger plants. However, you can expect higher success rates from these vegetables and herbs below.

  1. Mint
  2. Oregano
  3. Basil
  4. Sage
  5. Stevia
  6. Lemon Balm
  7. Thyme
  8. Rosemary
  9. Tarragon
  10. Lettuce
  11. Spinach
  12. Tomatoes
  13. Peppers
  14. Cucumbers
  15. Celery

It is so easy to grow herbs and vegetables in a simple jar of water.  It’s cheap, attractive for any household, and a great source of year-round produce!

What advice would you add? What it in the section below:

Every Year, Gardeners Make This Stupid Mistake — But You Don’t Have To. Read More Here.

Preserve your medicinal herbs the right way!

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Preserve your medicinal herbs the right way! Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Learn how to properly preserve your medicinal herbs on this week’s episode of Herbal Prepper Live. Just like food storage, your herbs can be preserved and stored for later use. But, if you don’t choose the right preservation method for the right herb … Continue reading Preserve your medicinal herbs the right way!

The post Preserve your medicinal herbs the right way! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Grid Down: Heart & Blood Pressure Care

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It is important to realize and understand that if we ever have a grid down situation or some sort of natural disaster that prevented us from getting our medication, a lot of people will die. Diabetics, epileptics, anyone with heart disease. You name it. So what can you learn and put into play that will help you with the disability that you have?

Well we can help with that! Below we have another cheerful video by ThePatriotNurse.  She talks about what sorts of herbal medicine will help with your heart health and in possible emergencies. She gives a brief crash course on how the heart works and all the vessels. Her description simplifies the basic way the heart works.

Neglect of the body over time can manifest into high blood pressure and different kinds of arrhythmia. So what happens if we no longer have pills and medicine to help us out? She talks about different herbs you can incorporate into your daily routine easily and store some for grid down. Cayenne, Garlic, Hawthorn Berries, and Ginger plus tons more than can help you all through life.

Patriot Nurse shares with us her four “must have” books. (Listed at the bottom of the page.) Reference books can always be helpful and beneficial in assisting you in an emergency.

We hope you enjoy watching ThePatriotNurse. Please feel free to comment and share your knowledge with fellow preppers

Grid Down: Heart & Blood Pressure Care

Herbal Home Health Care by John R. Christopher Prescription For Natural Healing by Phyllis A. Balch CNC School of Natural HealingEditors Favorite:The Survival Medicine Handbook by Dr. Joeseph Alton and Nurse Amy AltonA.K.A Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy

The post Grid Down: Heart & Blood Pressure Care appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Another, “Ask Cat” episode on Herbal Prepper Live!

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Another, “Ask Cat” episode on Herbal Prepper Live! Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” On the first Sunday of every month, I do an “Ask Cat” episode. Call in this Sunday evening with all of your natural health, herbal, and prepping questions. What kinds of questions can I ask? Ask anything related to herbal remedies, herbal … Continue reading Another, “Ask Cat” episode on Herbal Prepper Live!

The post Another, “Ask Cat” episode on Herbal Prepper Live! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Goldenrod

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Goldenrod (the Solidago genus, Asteracea family) is a great plant to know.

Distinguishing Features: Long wood like stems with spiky tooth like parts which are widely-spaced, yellow flowers that grow in thick clusters.

Leaves: There can be wide variations in characteristics, but generally, goldenrod leaves are about 4 inches long and about ¾ of an inch wide, tapering to a point at the tip and narrowing at the base, with no leaf stem and small teeth around the edges. Three veins run parallel from near the base of the leaf.. The underside of the leaf is hairy, especially along the veins and the upper side has a rough texture.

Height: Most Goldenrod plants average 4 feet in height.

Habitat: There is no shortage of Goldenrod in September and October. This yellow plant can be found in moist locations, forests, fields, roadsides, compost piles, cultivated fields, and orchards throughout Canada, the U.S., and across the world.

Goldenrod is a perennial plant that is well-known for its healing properties.

The properties of goldenrod are similar to many other herbs: antifungal, diuretic, diaphoretic, anti-inflammatory, expectorant, astringent, antiseptic, and carminative. However, the actions of goldenrod to the kidneys, urinary track, skin, allergies, and cardiovascular system are impressive.

Goldenrod is often unfairly blamed for causing hay fever in humans. The pollen causing these allergy problems is mainly produced by Ragweed (Ambrosia sp.), blooming at the same time as the goldenrod but wind-pollinated. Goldenrod pollen is too heavy and sticky to be blown far from the flowers, and is thus mainly pollinated by insects. Frequent handling of goldenrod and other flowers, however, can cause allergic reactions.

Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking goldenrod if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use..

Allergy to ragweed and related plants: Goldenrod may cause an allergic reaction in people who are sensitive to the Asteraceae/Compositae family. Members of this family include ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many others. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking goldenrod.

Fluid retention (edema) due to heart or kidney conditions: “Irrigation therapy,” during which goldenrod is taken with large amounts of fluids to increase urine flow, should not be attempted in people with fluid retention due to heart or kidney disease.

High Blood Pressure: There is a concern that goldenrod might make the body accumulate more sodium, and this can make high blood pressure worse.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTIs): Herbal “irrigation therapy” may not work against infections and may require the addition of germ-killing medications. “Irrigation therapy” should be monitored closely. Don’t depend on it for clearing up an infection.

Water pills (Diuretic drugs) interacts with GOLDENROD
Goldenrod seems to work like “water pills” by causing the body to lose water. Taking goldenrod along with other “water pills” might cause the body to lose too much water. Losing too much water can cause you to be dizzy and your blood pressure to go too low.
Some “water pills” include chlorothiazide (Diuril), chlorthalidone (Thalitone), furosemide (Lasix), hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ, Hydrodiuril, Microzide), and others.

Dosage: The appropriate dose of goldenrod depends on several factors such as the user’s age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for goldenrod. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician before using.

0960goldenrodtop

Preparations: goldenrod include tea, tincture, infused oils, poultice, and powder.

Goldenrod tonics are easy to make. Harvest any goldenrod by cutting the top third of the plant in full flower on a sunny fall day. Or, respectfully pull the entire plant, roots and all, in the late autumn or early winter. Then follow the simple directions below. Note: You can use any size jar when making a vinegar or a tincture, so long as you fill it full.

To dry flowering goldenrod: Bundle 2-3 stalks together and hang upside down in a cool, shady room until thoroughly dry. When the stalks snap crisply, store the dried herb in brown paper bags. One or two large handfuls of crushed leaves and flowers, steeped in a quart of boiling water for thirty minutes makes a tea that can be used hot, with honey, to counter allergies (especially pollen allergies), fevers, sore throats, coughs, colds and the flu; or taken cold to relieve colic in babies, and gas in adults. Dried mint and/or yarrow are tasty, and useful, additions when making goldenrod flower tea.

To dry goldenrod roots: Rinse dirt off the roots, then cut away all the stalks, leaves and dead flowers. If possible, hang your roots over a wood stove to dry; if not, place them on racks and put them in a warm place to dry until brittle. Store in glass jars. Depending on the difficulty you are addressing, goldenrod root tea may be made with large or small amounts of the roots brewed or decocted in boiling water. Or the roots may be powdered, alone or mixed with flowers, and applied to hard-to-heal wounds and sore joints.

To make a goldenrod vinegar: Chop the goldenrod coarsely, filling a jar with chopped flowers, leaves, stalks (and roots if you have them); then fill the jar to the top with room-temperature, pasteurized, apple cider vinegar. Cap it tightly with a plastic lid. (Metal lids will be eroded by the action of the vinegar. If you must use one, protect it with several layers of plastic between it and the vinegar.) Be sure to label your vinegar with the date and contents. Your goldenrod vinegar will be ready to use in six weeks to improve mineral balance, help prevent kidney stones, eliminate flatulence, and improve immune functioning.

To make a goldenrod tincture: Chop the goldenrod coarsely, filling a jar with chopped flowers, leaves, stalks (and roots if you have them); then add 100 proof vodka, filling the jar to the very top. Cap tightly and label. Your goldenrod tincture will be ready to use in six weeks, by the dropper full, as an anti-inflammatory, a sweat-inducing cold cure, and an astringent digestive aid. Medical herbalists use large doses (up to 4 droppers full at a time) of goldenrod tincture several times daily to treat kidney problems — including nephritis, hemorrhage, kidney stones, and inability to void — and prostate problems, including frequent urination.

The post Goldenrod appeared first on WWW.AROUNDTHECABIN.COM.

10 essential herbs

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Here are 10 essential herbs, including some of their uses and guidelines to get started on your herbal apothecary. Health made simple and easy.
A few herbs that you can grow indoors or outside. Herbs you can use for preparing medicines with simple techniques as our ancestors did.

As far back as 5000 BCE, Sumerians used herbs in medicine. Ancient Egyptians used fennel, coriander and thyme around 1555 BCE. In ancient Greece, in 162 CE, a physician by the name of Galen was known for concocting complicated herbal remedies that contained up to 100 ingredients. Herbs have long been used as the basis of traditional Chinese herbal medicine, with usage dating as far back as the first century CE and far before.

Herbs have been used throughout the world, for a lot longer than we remember. Most believe from the dawn of mankind.

In general use, herbs are any plants used for food, flavoring, medicine, or perfume. Culinary use typically distinguishes herbs from spices. Herbs refer to the leafy green parts of a plant (either fresh or dried), while a “spice” is a product from another part of the plant (usually dried), including seeds, berries, bark, roots and fruits.

1: Aloe vera (Aloe vera): fresh leaves

Leaf juice is used topically to treat minor burns and wounds; it is antiseptic, digestive, insecticidal and emollient.

2: Chickweed (Stellaria media): fresh or dried leaves and flowers

Used internally to ease the pain of rheumatism and externally to soothe itching and other skin discomforts; it is an anti-inflammatory herb.

Caution: Pregnant women should not eat large quantities of chickweed.

3: Comfrey (Symphytum officinale): for external use—leaf and root

Contains allantoin, a substance that speeds the healing of tissue, and rosmarinic acid, which is an anti-inflammatory. It is an astringent herb used in the bath, poultices and fomentations to heal bruises, broken bones and torn ligaments.

Caution: Comfrey is not recommended for internal use because of the presence of pyrrolizidine alkaloids, which can cause liver damage and cancerous tumors in the liver. Comfrey products should not be used on broken skin or be used by pregnant women, nursing mothers or children.

4: Garlic (Allium sativum): fresh bulbs (cloves), aerial bulblets, flowers
Cloves are used as a medicinal and culinary herb. The cloves are antibiotic, antifungal, antiseptic and antiviral.

5: Ginger (Zingiber officinale): fresh rhizome

Ginger is warming, antiseptic, analgesic and antispasmodic. It is a traditional remedy for digestive complaints, bronchitis, muscle spasm and rheumatism.

Caution: Garlic should not be used by anyone suffering from digestive-tract ulcers, high fever or inflammatory skin conditions.

6: Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis): sustainably harvested fresh or dried rhizome

Rhizomes have been used to dye fibers and are still used medicinally. The yellow color of its rhizomes is attributed to berberine, a strongly antibacterial and bitter alkaloid.

Caution: Pregnant women and persons with high blood pressure should not use goldenseal. The herb should not be used for more than three months because the strong antibacterial action kills beneficial intestinal flora.

7: Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia): leaves and flowers

It is antibiotic, antispasmodic on smooth muscle tissue and a depressant to the central nervous system. We carry a small vial of the essential oil of lavender with us everywhere we go, to use as first aid for burns, wounds, headaches and nervous tension.

8: Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis): leaves and flowers

Antibacterial, antispasmodic and antiviral, and is used as an insect repellent and sedative. The leaf is used in tea, tincture and in the bath for its calming properties and pleasant lemon scent.

Caution: Pregnant or nursing women should consult a medical professional trained in the use of therapeutic herbs before taking lemon balm. Consult with your physician before taking lemon balm with other medications.

9: Mint (Mentha spp.): leaves and flowers

Leaves are used in tea and bath blends for their flavor, stimulating properties and fragrance. Mint leaves are also taken in tea to aid digestion, reduce gas and treat headache, colds and fevers.

10: Sage (Salvia officinalis): leaves and flowers

Garden sage contains the powerful compound thujone that controls profuse perspiration and dries up lactation. Sage tea is a traditional remedy for sore gums and throat, skin infections and insect stings, and for sharpening the memory. Currently, Salvia species are being researched for their antioxidant properties, specifically for the prevention or treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.

Caution: Pregnant or nursing women should not take sage internally. It should not be taken internally in large amounts or for extended periods because of the side effects of thujone.

Rich Beresford 2016 7 25
Written for AroundTheCabin.com

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Nature’s Nutrition

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 4 Wild Edibles, Their Nutrition and How to Find Them

Submitted by Marlena Stoddard

If you’re lost in the woods without any food, how can you keep yourself from starving while waiting for help? Sometimes unlikely sources of food can be the most nutritious. These four wild edibles will give you all the nutrients you need to stay alive when scrounging.

Cattail Roots

Cattails are the survivalist’s best friend. Cattail roots have plenty of fiber, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, manganese, and vitamins A, B, C, and K.

Cattails can be found in any wet, marshy area, including drainage ditches alongside the road. You can also dig up the roots in the winter. Clean the roots before boiling them. You can also harvest starch from them or grind them to make flour. Eating them raw won’t hurt, either, but it can give you a stomachache.

Stinging Nettles

A cup of stinging nettles has almost 40 calories and nearly half of your daily recommended dose of calcium. It also has so much iron that it’s sometimes used to treat iron deficiencies.

Nettles grow anywhere that grass or weeds can. Look for their slightly hairy, serrated leaves—just make sure you wear gloves before you touch them.

Don’t eat raw nettle leaves—it’ll hurt! Blanch or steam the leaves to remove their sting. You can also use their leaves to make a very nutritious tea.

Grasshoppers and Crickets

Grasshoppers and crickets have a surprising amount of protein and are tasty when fried in butter or oil. Though, according to a Bethesda, Maryland, pest control company, you’ll probably want to remove their wings and spiky legs before you fry them up. In just 100 grams, these bugs can contain up to 20 grams of protein. That’s almost as much as ground beef. They also contain lots of calcium, iron, and fat.

Crickets and grasshoppers can be found in tall grass. Just listen for their telltale chirping. Grasshoppers are more nutritious but can be trickier to catch because they can fly. You may need a quick, silent approach or a net to catch them.

Bee and Fly Larvae

Larvae taste good baked or fried and have life-sustaining protein, amino acids, and fat.

You’ll find bee larvae if you break open a beehive or honeycomb. Honeybee larvae will also be surrounded by honey and royal jelly, which can provide even more nutrients. Getting stung can sometimes be life-threatening, though, so think twice before raiding a hive. On the other hand, fly larvae can be found anywhere there is decomposing material or manure. Once they’re cleaned off, they’re ok to eat.

Surviving Off Your Back Yard

Nature has everything you need to forage for food as long as you know where to look. Keep an eye out for wild edibles and do some research to find which plants and insects are native in your area.

The post Nature’s Nutrition appeared first on American Preppers Network.

7 Ways To Chase Away Mosquitoes Without Deet (No. 3 Was New To Us, Too!)

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7 Ways To Repel Mosquitoes Without Deet (No. 2 Was New To Us, Also!)

Image source: Pixabay.com

It was the perfect morning for a hike. After a string of hot days, the weather had cooled considerably. Humidity was low, and there was not a cloud in the cool morning sky.

My kids and I were ready for the adventure of a new hiking trail. We had snacks, plenty of water and other supplies in our daypacks, and we hit the trail with enthusiasm. Before long, however, my daughter and I were swatting our necks and arms. Soon, we realized we were being badly bitten.

Mosquitoes! They can ruin a hike, a camping trip, a picnic or even a lazy afternoon in your backyard. Scientists estimate that about one out of every five people is especially susceptible to mosquito bites – which explains why my son was relatively unscathed that day. Your blood type, metabolism, diet, general scent and even the color of your clothing play a role in why mosquitoes bite certain people more than others.

Not only are mosquito bites painful and itchy, but mosquitoes can carry dangerous diseases such as the West Nile Virus and malaria. If, like me, you prefer to avoid toxic commercial insect repellents, there are some alternative measures for repelling mosquitoes.

Learn How To Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

Here are eight all-natural ways to keep mosquitoes from ruining your summer outdoor fun.

1. Garlic. Mosquitoes dislike the smell of garlic. You can repel mosquitoes by eating garlic before you spend time outdoors, since the garlic oil is slowly released through the pores of your skin.

You also can keep mosquitoes away by rubbing garlic juice on your skin. Simply pinch a fresh clove or two in order to get the juice flowing and apply it to your exposed skin. Another option is to consume garlic capsules.

2. Herbs. You can keep mosquitoes at bay with certain herbs, including lemongrass, mint, rosemary, lavender and basil. Simply rub the leaves onto your exposed skin before going outdoors.

To keep mosquitoes away from your home and garden, try planting these herbs in your garden, especially near your doors and windows. Planning a barbecue? Throw a few springs of rosemary on your charcoal grill to repel the biting insects.

3. Vitamin B1. Studies dating back 50 years indicate that taking vitamin B1 (thiamine) can deter mosquitoes and other flying insects from biting. Scientists theorize that vitamin B1 produces a skin odor that female mosquitoes, which are more likely to bite than male mosquitoes, find offensive.

Vitamin B1 is water-soluble. Try taking one 100 mg tablet each day (with a meal) during mosquito season.

4. Natural oils. Certain natural oils work well as natural mosquito repellants. You can create your own natural repellent by mixing a few drops of oil with a carrier liquid such as olive oil or sunflower oil. A 10 to 1 ratio often is a good formula. (Please note that researchers caution against using natural oils on children younger than three years old.)

Here are some natural oils that repel mosquitoes.

  • Eucalyptus oil
  • Lavender oil
  • Tea Tree oil
  • Lemon oil

5. Homemade citronella candles.

7 Ways To Repel Mosquitoes Without Deet (No. 2 Was New To Us, Also!)

Image source: Pixabay.com

Citronella is a time-honored insect repellent. Here is a recipe for making homemade citronella candles.

What you need:

  • One-half pound raw, settled beeswax
  • Citronella and one or more of these essential oils: rosemary, geranium, lavender
  • Pan of boiling water and metal bowl (to use as double boiler)
  • Tea light wicks (available from crafts store)
  • 10 candle holders
  • Wooden chopsticks or similar small sticks for stirring
  • Thermometer
  • Knife

Directions:

Use the knife to break the beeswax into small pieces. Place the pieces in the metal bowl over the pan of hot water and stir continuously while it melts. Use the thermometer to test the water temperature. When it reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit, start adding several drops of the essential oils, stirring well after each addition.

New ‘Survival Herb Bank’ Gives You Access to God’s Amazing Medicine Chest

Pour the mixture into the candleholders. (If you are using glass, reduce the chance of breakage by pouring in a small amount of wax and letting it cool a little before adding more.) Once the mixture has cooled and a slight skin has formed on the top of the wax, add the wicks.

If the wicks are not already primed, pre-dip them in the wax for longer burning time. Next, place the primed wicks into the wax. The candles will be ready to use when the wax has completely hardened.

6. Apple cider vinegar. Insects, including mosquitoes, will avoid the strong smell of apple cider vinegar. You can make a natural mosquito repellent with organic apple cider vinegar and the essential oil of your choice. Add 25 drops of essential oil (such as lavender) to one-quarter cup of apple cider vinegar in a glass jar with a lid. Shake well to blend. Apply to skin.

7. Bats. Did you know that one small brown bat can eat more than 1,000 mosquitoes in one night? Attracting bats to your yard can therefore be an efficient and easy method of mosquito control.

Get tips on building a bat house here.

Finally, pay attention to the time when you are outdoors. Mosquitoes are most active early in the morning and at dusk. If you venture outside at these times, cover up with lightweight long sleeves and with long pants. Wear light colors, as dark colors tend to attract the annoying insects.

What advice would you add? Share it in the section below:

If You Like All-Natural Home Remedies, You Need To Read Everything That Hydrogen Peroxide Can Do. Find Out More Here.

9 Popular Vegetables You Can Plant, From Seed, In July

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9 Popular Vegetables You Can Plant, From Seed, In July

Image source: Pixabay.com

Time flies, doesn’t it? Prime time for planting certain long-season vegetables may have come and gone, but unless you live in a climate with a short growing season, you still have time to plant plenty of vegetables before the first frost.

Obviously, gardeners in super-hot climates might not be able to plant everything on this list, but for gardeners in most parts of North America, try planting these this month:

1. Bush beans – Check your calendar; if you have 45-65 days before the first average frost date in your area, then you have time to plant bush beans. Hold off if you tend to have early freezes; beans aren’t cold tolerant and are killed by frost.

2. Carrots, beets and turnips — Root crops aren’t typically fast-growing vegetables, but carrots, beets and turnip can burst out in a hurry in warm weather, and all three can tolerate a light frost. Look for them to ripen in 50-60 days.

Need Non-GMO Seeds? Get The Best Deals Here!

3. Kohlrabi – If you haven’t tried this mild, crunchy veggie, then there’s still time for a crop this year. Kohlrabi is ready to pick in 50-60 days and tolerates light frost. Although kohlrabi loves sunshine, it’s a cool season crop, so a spot in morning sunlight and afternoon shade is preferable.

9 Popular Vegetables You Can Plant, From Seed, In July

Radishes. Image source: Pixabay.com

4. Radishes – If you’re looking for a super-speedy, dependable vegetable, then you can’t miss with radishes. However, radishes don’t like extreme heat and may bolt in hot climates. Look for heat-tolerant varieties like Rover, Inca, Roxanne, Cherry Belle or Crunchy Royale.

5. Pak choi – Harvest this tender oriental vegetable after about a month, or wait another couple of weeks if you prefer pak choi in heads. Also known as bok choy, pak choi isn’t terribly finicky about high temperatures, but partial shade is a good idea if you’re concerned about bolting.

6. Peas – Plant peas in early July and be ready to harvest in 70 to 80 days. The plants are ready for harvest by autumn in most climates, but don’t worry about a light frost; peas can survive temps in the high 20s.

7. Lettuce (and other salad crops). What? Gardeners know that lettuce is a cool season crop that performs best in spring and autumn, but it’s possible to grow lettuce even in the heat of summer. With a few workarounds, you can continue to plant lettuce every two or three weeks throughout the season.

  • Plant lettuce in semi-shade. A little light morning or evening sunlight is enough to keep your plants healthy, without bolting too soon. Use shade cloth if necessary, or plant lettuce to the north of a bean trellis, sunflowers or other tall plant.
  • Grow lettuce in containers so you can move the veggies into shade as needed. If you use a heavy container, a rolling platform simplifies the task and saves your back.
  • Provide plenty of water – preferably from a drip system or soaker hose. Never allow the soil to become bone dry.
  • Try some of the following heat-tolerant varieties, which tend to be slow to bolt and resistant to bitterness. Butterhead/bibb lettuce – Adriana, Summer Bibb, Buttercrunch or Fireball; Romaine/cos – Green Towers, Cimmaron, Jericho or Little Gem; Iceberg/crisphead – Ithaca, Summertime, Calmar or Great Lakes; Red leaf – Red Fire, Lovelock, Red Sails or Ruby.

8. Garlic – Planting garlic in July is no problem. Let the garlic winter in the ground, then harvest it next summer.

9. Herbs – Fast-growing herbs suitable for planting in July include dill, coriander and parsley. Cilantro and basil are speedy growers, ready to snip in about a month.

What would you add to this list? Share your tips for planting in July in the section below:

Every Year, Gardeners Make This Dumb Mistake — But You Don’t Have To. Read More Here.

5 Herbs That Mosquitoes Absolutely, Positively Despise

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5 Herbs That Mosquitoes Absolutely, Positively Despise

Basil. Image source: Pixabay.com

 

Summer is here, and that brings one unfortunate type of creature: bugs.

Mosquitoes and fleas, and other bugs and insects, can become a real annoyance and ruin anyone’s outdoor fun. But there is an all-natural way to fight back against these pests: with herbs!

The five herbs below, and their essential oils, can help repel those annoying bugs throughout summer.

1. Basil. Basil is not only a delicious herb but is also great for repelling bugs. Flies and mosquitoes hate basil. Use it to repel bugs by planting it, making a spray with it, or rubbing the leaves directly on yourself.

Learn How To Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

When plating the basil, put it near areas where you most want to keep those pesky insects away from you. A simple spray could be made by steeping the leaves in water for a couple of hours. Then, take just the basil-water and mix it with a small amount of apple cider vinegar and spray it on yourself.

2. Mint. Its intoxicating and overwhelming smell is what keeps mosquitoes away. Mint can be made into a spray by mixing its essential oil (a few drops of peppermint oil) with vinegar or water. The plant itself also can be utilized as a repellent by rubbing the leaves on your skin directly, or by placing the plant wherever you hang out most often.

5 Herbs That Mosquitoes Absolutely, Positively Despise

Lavender. Image source: Pixabay.com

3. Lavender. One of the best-smelling and beautiful plants is lavender, and it has one of the most beneficial attributes to be used in the summer months. Lavender is perfect at repelling moths, fleas, flies and mosquitoes! This is the one herb that can do it all. Yet it is beneficial to not only you but also your garden. Hang it in your house and even by the doorways to keep the flies away. It can also be made into a spray like the other herbs.

4. Lemon thyme. When using this herb it is important to bruise the leaves before rubbing it on the skin. The only way the aroma is released is by smashing it or bruising it to release the oils. Then it can be applied to the skin. Among bugs and insects, lemon thyme is best used to repel mosquitoes.

5. Lemon balm. Lemon balm is an amazing plant that not only repels “bad” bugs but also attracts good ones. It repels annoying insects like mosquitoes, gnats or flies and attracts insects like butterflies and bees. This allows for your garden to be cared for by the beneficial bugs and protected from the pesky bugs. This herb can be crushed and applied to the skin or put on a patio or deck, or even planted in the garden, so as to protect you when you work.

In nature, there is a balance of good and bad. Nature gives us those annoying bugs, but nature also provides us plants to repel them when needed. Now that you have discovered what herbs to use, you can keep those exasperating insects away and actually enjoy your evenings outside, bug-free.

What herbs would you add to this list? Share them in the section below:  

If You Like All-Natural Home Remedies, You Need To Read Everything That Hydrogen Peroxide Can Do. Find Out More Here.

hydrogen peroxide report

How to Make Infused Vinegar

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nfused vinegar for cooking, cleaning & remedies. 24+ recipes included | PreparednessMama

Plus over 20 ways to use it in food, cleaning, and herbal remedies Making infused vinegar is one of the first herbal preparations I learned. This simple technique can be used on any herb, fruit, or vegetable that suits your creative experiments. Once you know how easy it is to make you’ll never purchase expensive flavored […]

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Learn the Art of Herbalism Your Own Way

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Learn Art of HerbalismAre you thinking about learning herbalism as a readiness skill to better help yourself and loved ones during an emergency? Let me be the first to tell you that getting a solid herbal education can be tough, but it’s incredibly rewarding. There’s a lot of information to cover, and many different approaches to teaching and practicing herbalism. There are also many different ways to learn herbalism: you can enroll in a local herb school, take online classes, or gather resources to teach yourself. But as a prepper, how do you sort through all of the options and determine what’s right for you?

Herbalism is largely unregulated in the United States. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it does mean that you, as a consumer shopping for an herbal education, need to weigh your options and do your research. And if you’re also a prepper, it’s important to feel confident that your teachers have done their research and had extensive experience, and that the course materials will cover topics that are relevant to preparedness and survival.

My Own Herbal Education

My first “official” herbal school experience left me frustrated that my instructor relied mainly on industry street cred and charisma. Most of the information in that course was good, but there were no references to external research ANYWHERE in the course. The more I studied, the more this made me uncomfortable. I had read widely on my own prior to enrolling, so I had a sense of what was reliable and what wasn’t, but it was still a very frustrating experience. Also, my main focus at the time was on working with clients more than preparedness, but the course didn’t really even cover as much of that as was implied. Very frustrating!

After several more years of self directed study, I found an herb school that focused on herbalism in remote settings and for community emergency preparedness. This school (The Human Path) has been a great fit for me, because it has allowed me to fully develop my interest in emergency herbalism, and even offers clinical outreach programs in remote settings that will allow me to gain more experience with my intake and evaluation skills while actively making a difference in communities. Founder of The Human Path, Sam Coffman, wrote this article on The Survival Mom blog.

Around the same time, I also began working for an herb school (The Herbal Academy) that offers online programs (from beginner level to family herbalists to clinical professionals) that are created collaboratively. Because of the school’s emphasis on collaboration, the courses reflect the wisdom and perspectives of many experienced herbalists rather than a single person. Click on this ad to learn what this course is all about. I highly recommend their courses.
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Where should YOU learn herbalism?

There are many more options available now than there were even a few years ago. Take advantage of that! Spend some time researching different schools. You might even be lucky enough to have a local herb school nearby so that you can learn in a classroom setting, which can make learning skills like plant identification and applying your knowledge (via student clinical programs) much easier.

Nowadays, many herb schools are even accessible online (and yes, this is great. Trust me- I mailed my lessons in via snail mail at the first school!). There are several advantages to taking online courses:

  • It’s easier to reach instructors,
  • Easier to participate in virtual classroom settings like webinars and chats.
  • Online, you can quickly research questions you might have.
  • It’s easier to be in touch with current and former students, so you can get their reviews and insights into a particular course before you enroll (always a good idea!).

You should understand, though, that there’s no formal syllabus that all herb schools are required to follow, or any accreditation process that they must undergo (at least in the United States), so where you go to learn herbalism will depend largely on your goals. You will need to take a look at the founder’s philosophy, whether or not the lessons are backed with adequate research materials, and whether the training offered at the school is a match for your needs.

Generally speaking, steer clear of programs that claim to make you a “master herbalist.” The phrase is just hype. There is no meaningful standard by which to judge the qualification. “Certified herbalist” is the same way. Just as there is no accrediting body specifically for herb schools, there’s also no regulatory body that grants titles for herbalists. A school can, however, give you a certificate of completion for successfully passing their exams.  

Herb schools will typically fall into one or the other of these categories based on the focus of their programs. Keep these in mind as you sort through which schools might be a good fit for your needs:

  • Tradition-focuses on a historical subset of herbalism (such as Ayurveda from India)
  • Career- focuses on developing skills and advanced theory needed in a modern clinical setting
  • Family Herbalist- focuses on everyday use of herbs in a family/home setting
  • Survivalist- focuses on herbalism in remote or survival settings
  • New age- focuses on intuitive herbalism, shamanism, or spiritual aspects of herbalism

For preparedness purposes, a course with a survival school is a wise investment, but you shouldn’t overlook a solid foundation with a school focused on home herbalism, either.  A good home herbalism course will usually teach you how to make many different types of herbal preparations and give you plenty of information that you can apply for everyday health needs.   

An herb school may also divide their programs into different tracks based on specific skills or skill levels, such as beginner, intermediate, or advanced, so take your time investigating the schools that interest you. Even if you don’t think every course they offer is a good fit for what you want, there may be a specific track or set of courses that’s exactly what you’re looking for. Here are three school directories you can peruse to get a feel for some of the options available:

Here are three school directories you can peruse to get a feel for some of the options available:

Herbal Education Guide from Plant Healer Magazine

School Directory by the American Herbalist Guild

Herb Schools List at Mountain Rose Herbs

How to Learn Herbalism on Your Own

It’s also possible to be a self taught herbalist. This approach requires careful research and the dedication to seek out many professional perspectives, and no, reading internet forums for different opinions and ideas doesn’t count! There are a few things you can do to make your self-guided herbal preparedness studies more fruitful:

  1. Invest in a solid herbal textbook like Medical Herbalism by David Hoffman, or Principles and Practices of Phytotherapy by Kerry Bone. Read it, cover to cover, and take notes. This will give you a very good introduction to herbalism from the more scientific side. (This is what I did after my first, not-so-successful experience, and it was worth every penny).
  2. Get a few herbal recipe books that teach you how to make herbal extracts, teas, and other preparations. James Green’s The Herbal Medicine Maker’s Handbook, Rosemary Gladstar’s Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health or Homegrown Remedies by Anne McIntyre are all excellent resources. Work through the book and teach yourself to make the different types of products.
  3. Make a list of the types of health problems you know you will need to address, personally, and research them. Start looking up (and using, with your doctor’s permission) herbal alternatives.
  4. Create herbal components for your first aid kits. Here is more information about that.
  5. Part of the beauty of having herbalism as a survival skill  is that herbs are renewable- you can grow them yourself! Select a few new herbs each year and add them to your garden. Many are lovely to look at and can be added to urban and suburban landscaping, or grown on a balcony or patio in containers. Herbs can be difficult to grow from seed, but many do very well if grown from cuttings or root division. You’ll need to learn the specific needs of each plant as you go.
  6. Foraging is much less reliable as a supply tactic than many people think it is. Plants may not be available when you need them, or it may be hard to find certain ones in your area. If you want to learn to forage, you will need field guides specific to your area and lots of time to learn plant identification. You will also need to learn the individual timetable of each plant- when it blooms and when to harvest- and what specific parts are used. You’ll also need to tend your foraging plots so that (hopefully) there will be even more of the plants available the next year because you took the time to spread seed or otherwise help the plants regenerate. It’s best to focus on one or two really abundant “weeds” at a time and add more as you hone your skills.
  7. Wilderness First Aid- if at all possible, take a course in wilderness first aid to supplement your herbal studies.
  8. One prepper and herbalist, Cat Ellis, offers this book written from a prepper perspective, all about various herbal and natural remedies.

All of this goes to show that there are many, many different herbal schools to choose from, and that whether or not you enroll with a school or strike out on your own, you should be a very active participant in your education. Ask questions, read widely, create herbal products to use at home, and really participate in what you are learning! Herbalism is so much more than “book learning” and you will have the best results later by learning to incorporate herbs into your current lifestyle now as well as how to utilize them in a remote or disaster setting.  

Learn more about herbalism right here on The Survival Mom blog

The Basics in Herbal Formulas!

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The Basics in Herbal Formulas! Host: Cat Ellis “The Herbal Prepper Live” Herbal formulas are a severely underutilized resource by preppers. Plant-based remedies provide an easy, affordable, and renewable alternative for post-collapse medicines. Herbs, mushrooms, trees, and other natural items, like honey, provide a wealth of traditional remediesthat you can make and grow at home with … Continue reading The Basics in Herbal Formulas!

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10 Heal-Anything Herbs That Just Might Replace Your Medicine (No. 5 Is Popular During Summer)

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10 Heal-Anything Herbs For Growing Your Own Off-Grid ‘Backyard Medicine Chest’

Image source: Flickr

Growing herbs for use in the kitchen allows you to add a freshness to the table that store-bought herbs can never produce. Whether grown in a small plot designed especially for a kitchen herb garden, in containers along the patio or as companion plants in the family garden, herbs are an excellent addition to your homestead.

Although herbs add much to our culinary endeavors, they are also useful in many other ways. Many common herbs have great medicinal qualities, are helpful in caring for livestock, and some have the ability to control unwanted pests around the homestead. For the cost of a few seeds, or potted plants, and a bit of time for researching your options, you can grow a natural medicine chest in your backyard.

Below is a brief overview of 10 common plants that can be used to treat a wide variety of ailments. Some can be taken internally as an herbal tea, while some should only be used as an infused oil or as part of a poultice. Still others are best suited for pest management on the homestead.

1. Sweet basil

Sweet Basil is not only versatile in the kitchen, but also works as a repellent for flying insects such as flies and mosquitos. Basil reduces inflammation and has been shown to be effective as an antibacterial agent.

2. Calendula

Not to be confused with marigolds, which are toxic, calendula has many healing properties. It is best used as a salve in treating skin irritations, including rashes, bruising, cuts and scrapes. It is safe to use for everyone on the homestead, including livestock.

3. Comfrey

10 Herbs For Growing Your Own Off-Grid ‘Backyard Medicine Chest’

Comfrey. Image source: Pixabay.com

Comfrey contains allantoin, which aids cell formation, giving comfrey wonderful healing properties. Used to treat wounds, burns, skin irritations, sprains and even broken bones, comfrey can be used as a raw leaf, in a salve or more often as a poultice.

Need Non-GMO Herb Seeds? Get Them From A Company You Can Trust!

Please note that comfrey should not be taken internally, as it disrupts liver function.

4. Garlic

We all know that garlic has health benefits when added to our meals, but it is also helpful as a repellent for pesky mosquitos. A garlic poultice can be used to treat ringworm and other skin irritations. Painful ear infections can be eased by the application of warm, mashed garlic cloves.

5. Lavender

Even in ancient times, lavender was added to bath water to restore calm. Today, we recognize that it is helpful not only for relieving anxiety but it has beneficial properties that can be utilized to treat burns, cuts and insect bites.

6. Marsh mallow

Marsh mallow is a versatile healing plant. It can be used as a salve for insect bites, bruises and other types of skin inflammation. It works well as a poultice for chest congestion and can also be made into a syrup to further alleviate congested airways. An herbal tea, made from the root of the mallow plant, has been known to help multiple ailments, including excessive stomach acid and even the passage of kidney stones.

7. Painted daisies

Painted daisies, as well as other daisy relatives, contain pyrethrum, a natural insecticide. Whether it is used as a companion plant in the garden or planted around an outdoor living space, this plant is a colorful natural alternative to toxic insecticides.

8. Parsley

10 Herbs For Growing Your Own Off-Grid ‘Backyard Medicine Chest’

Parsley. Image source: Pixabay.com

Aside from garnishing your dinner plate, parsley aids in digestion, promotes optimal liver function and combats bad breath. It can be used as poultice to reduce swelling and bruising. Additionally, adding parsley when juicing other fruits and vegetables also helps to eliminate water retention.

9. Sage

A common addition to savory foods, sage, used as an herbal tea or as a syrup, is helpful in reducing fevers, easing headaches, and clearing sinuses. Relieve skin irritations, such as itchy rashes, with sage leaves.

10. Thyme

Thyme is a multipurpose plant, offering many medicinal uses, as well as being helpful for pest management. Adding thyme to your garden will draw bees for pollination. However, if you add thyme to a campfire, it will repel unwanted insects. Medicinally, thyme can be used a number of ways. As a poultice, thyme acts as an anti-inflammatory agent and is also antifungal. As a weak tea, it can be used as a mouthwash and gargle to relieve sores in the mouth and general sore throats. It works as an expectorant, helpful in relieving painful coughs.

Which herbs would you add to the list? Share your advice in the section below:

Bust Inflation With A Low-Cost, High-Production Garden. Read More Here.

Surviving with Hypothyroidism after SHTF!

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How to Survive with Hypothyroidism after SHTF Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” There’s a quiet epidemic growing around the globe. People are developing hypothyroidism, which is an under-active thyroid. There is also an overwhelming predominance of a specific type of hypothyroidism called Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. So much so, that both are nearly interchangeable terms. Right now, in … Continue reading Surviving with Hypothyroidism after SHTF!

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Keeping on keeping on…programming updates, podcasts, and donations. SurvivalRing is STILL growing after nearly 20 years…

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I’ve spent some time today correcting some old code on SurvivalRing, including many of the news feeds. Some have died, some have changed, and several have been corrected or reformatted for easier reading. See all the feeds here… http://www.survivalring.org/feeds/ I’ll be resorting them and creating a better link tree, or in other words, putting all […]

Ask Cat the Herbal Prepper

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Ask Cat Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” It’s time for another “Ask Cat” episode on Herbal Prepper Live! Call in this Sunday evening with all of your natural health, herbal, and prepping questions. Originally, I was going to talk just about hypothyroidism. We’re going to save that topic for next Sunday (6/12/16). I have been … Continue reading Ask Cat the Herbal Prepper

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Deer Hate These 7 Plants (So Plant Them Around Your Garden)

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Deer Hate These 7 Plants (So Plant Them Around Your Garden)

Image source: Pixabay.com

 

Deer are lovely, gentle animals that are a pleasant sight to see – when they are on someone else’s property, that is. As anyone who has had hungry deer visit their garden knows, deer cease to be appealing when they devour your flowers and vegetables.

Deer are crafty and agile creatures that can jump fences and find their way around many obstacles in pursuit of a tasty meal. So what are some natural ways to deter deer from your garden?

Deer tend to avoid plants with strong odors, with unusual textures — such as fuzzy leaves or spiny stems — or with bitter tastes. Therefore, you may find success in protecting your tender greens and flowers from deer by building a border around them of plants that the animals dislike.

Here are seven garden plants that repel deer:

1. Bee balm

A native wildflower that has been hybridized for gardens, bee balm can make a striking addition to your garden with dramatic summer blooms.

Deer Hate These 7 Plants (So Plant Them Around Your Garden)

Bee balm. Image source: Pixabay.com

The fragrant flower attracts butterflies, hummingbirds and bees, but deer do not care for the aroma. You can harvest the leaves for use in salad, or you can dry them for a delicious tea.

If you have room in a sunny spot, you can let bee balm plants spread for large splashes of color. Picking the flowers or deadheading them encourages a second round of blooms. To repel deer, use it as a border plant or in containers around your garden area.

2. Chives

Deer tend to steer clear of chives because of their strong odor and flavor. Chives are easy to grow and once they are established, they self-sow. In addition, chives boast pretty white or purple flowers in summer.

To deter deer, you can plant chives throughout your landscaping and alongside your veggies. They also grow well in containers.

3. Cosmos

Available in a wide variety of color, cosmos is an easy-maintenance flowering plant that deer dislike. Cosmos tolerate a wide range of soil types and can handle dry conditions.

This New All-Natural Fertilizer Doubles Garden Production!

Cosmos plants can range from one to five feet, so they can add height and color to your beds. Pinching off flowers will increase blooming. Fast-growing cosmos can be used as a hedge around the plants deer find tasty.

4. Garlic

Home-grown garlic adds flavor and nutrition to many pasta dishes, and guess what? Deer don’t like the smell or taste of garlic. Thus, by planting some garlic bulbs among your vegetables, you can deter deer from munching on your other plants.

Other than needing well-draining soil, garlic requires little maintenance.

5. Oleander

Deer Hate These 7 Plants (So Plant Them Around Your Garden)

Image source: Pixabay.com

If you’re looking for something larger to deter deer from your garden beds, consider oleander. An evergreen shrub that can grow up to 20 feet tall, oleander has attractive white, red, pink or yellow blossoms in spring and early summer.

The plant is poisonous to deer, and deer instinctively avoid it.

6. Rosemary

A hardy herb with needle-like leaves that are a favorite of many cooks, rosemary has a strong aroma that deer dislike.

The woody-stemmed plant can commonly reach three feet in height, and in mild climates, it makes an attractive evergreen hedge that displays white, pink, purple or blue flowers in the spring. Rosemary likes full sun and well-drained soil.

7. Russian sage

If you are looking for an attractive easy-to-grow herb that deer dislike, look no further than Russian sage. This hardy perennial will grow up to five feet tall, boasting fragrant and lovely lavender-blue flowers in the spring.

Russian sage can provide a pretty border to deter hungry deer from your veggies and plants.

Keep in mind that deer are persistent creatures, and many gardeners report that what deterred deer one season will have seemingly no effect the following season.

What plants do you use that repel deer? Share your tips in the section below:

Sources:

http://www.gardening.cornell.edu/factsheets/deerdef/bridgen_list.pdf

http://store.msuextension.org/publications/YardandGarden/MT199521AG.pdf

http://extension.oregonstate.edu/deschutes/sites/default/files/deer_resistant_plants_ec.pdf

http://www.ext.colostate.edu/ptlk/2302.html

Every Spring, Gardeners Make This Avoidable Mistake — But You Don’t Have To. Read More Here.

Herbs for Seasonal Allergies!

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Herbs for Seasonal Allergies Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” It’s springtime, the air smells of flowers and cut grass. The sun is out, and there is a gentle breeze. People are outside, enjoying their backyards, gardening, and cooking out on the grill. On the weekends, perhaps they are out camping or hiking. That is, unless … Continue reading Herbs for Seasonal Allergies!

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Wild Violets: For Beauty, Nourishment and Healing

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Wild Violets

Who isn’t entranced while walking a shady wooded path strewn with a carpet of wild violets? It instantly creates an almost magical atmosphere, intoxicating with the sweet scent of the blooms. Makes me wonder what virtue of the violet gained it prominence on the Napoleonic Imperial Army’s emblem! It is certainly a plant full of offerings for us, be it for just sensory enjoyment or for practical purposes.

There are many varieties of wild violets, some more fragrant than others, but all are edible and beautiful. Johnny jump-ups, or Viola tricolor, are a well-loved cousin to the violet, also with many uses. (They are also the forefathers of the cultivated garden pansy, which are also edible.) The violets I collect are Viola odorata.

To add violets to your home herbal apothecary, collect the leaves and flowers in mid-late spring. Dry carefully as they are delicate, which is also why they don’t withstand the summer heat. The plant likes some shade and can often be found at the edges of woods, stream beds and thickets, where the soil is rich and moist. Flowers sprout up on their own stems apart from the surrounding orb leaves, which is interesting. Leaves are heart shaped and often curl a bit on the edges. The flowers can be yellow or white but are definitely most commonly found in a shade of purple – hence, violet! Because the violet doesn’t seed until autumn when a new stem with a seedhead emerges where once in spring the beautiful flower resided, you can harvest violets to your heart’s content, knowing that you aren’t restricting their reoccurrence! I like that!

Wild Violets

Violets are also rich in medicinal characteristics. In an infusion, the leaves and flowers have expectorant action, helpful with any mucus buildup in coughs and especially bronchitis, and also have an alterative action, helping your body to rebalance and cleanse – especially your nerves, lungs, reproductive and immune systems. Their anti-inflammatory action is helpful for any condition related to inflammation, with people noting results in conditions as varied as eczema and rheumatism. As a diuretic, it can aid the body in ridding the urinary tract of infection. There is ancient and not-so-ancient medical literature that cites violets – specifically the leaves- as a viable anti-tumor agent, be it fibrocystic tumors or cancerous tumors. Check it out.

Also consider extracting properties of the violet by making tinctures and violet oil. Remember when making an infused oil to dry your herb first so that the moisture from the herb doesn’t cause mold in the oil. Violet leaves would be a welcome addition to any wound-healing oil to be made into a salve, because of the antiseptic, dissolving, cooling and healing properties they harbor. Pink eye? Get some violet leaves and make a hot poultice!

Wild violets

As part of a beauty regimen, it is told that soaking a cup of violets in a cup of warm fresh goat’s milk overnight and then soaking a heated washcloth in the milk in the morning and applying it to the face and neck does wonders for the complexion.

As an edible, we have just eaten the flowers and leaves as we pick them, strewn them into salad for a touch of beauty and tastiness and also have dipped the flowers into beaten egg whites (with a smidge of water) and dipped in sugar to let dry into beautiful decorations for edible creations. You can also add the greens to a collection of spring potherbs, a vitamin and mineral-rich treat of the spring season! The leaves are especially rich in vitamins A and C. (100 g fresh leaves = 10,000 IU vit A and 264 mg it C) Yum! Don’t eat the roots of the violet, however, or you will wind up with a belly ache. I’m going to add a fun recipe I found in an old book of mine on wild foods. It’s something I plan to make before the violets disappear for the year!

Wild Violets

Violet Jelly
1/2 cup fresh purple violet petals
1 cup sugar
3 cups water
1 1/2 Tbs plain gelatin
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
Whipped cream
Fresh spring violets

Add stemmed violets to a boiling syrup of the sugar and water. Simmer, covered, 20 minutes. Strain and measure out 2 cups of syrup. Soften the gelatin in the orange juice and add. Pour into a mold and jell in the refrigerator. Unmold and garnish with whipped cream and fresh violets.

Wild Violets

Happy Spring everyone! ~Carin
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Disclaimer: Of course we claim no responsibility for your experience with these herbs.  Everything we share is for information purposes only and is not to be taken as professional or medical advice. Do your own research!  Always consult a professional. Be wise. Consider always the chance of an allergic reaction. We are all unique in body chemistry.  We are NOT a medical professionals by any means, however we have saved our family a boatload of annoyance and money by being resourceful and using what is right at our feet – literally. See full disclaimer here.

9 All-Natural Cures For Recurring Bad Breath

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9 All-Natural Cures For Recurring Bad Breath

Image source: Pixabay.com

Whether it is from the onions on your sandwich or that extra cup of coffee, you probably have dealt with the uncomfortable problem of having bad breath at one time or the other.

Many of us grab a mint or chew a piece of gum for a quick fix. Some of us stash a bottle of mouthwash in our desk drawer or in a compartment in the car to freshen our mouths when we are on the go.

However, what do you do when you have an ongoing breath problem? Most commercial breath freshening products contain harsh, unnatural ingredients, and they can simply mask an underlying problem that is causing the bad breath in the first place.

The good news is that there are many natural ways to fight bad breath. In addition, most are easy and inexpensive. Here are nine natural ideas to try to help eliminate bad breath.

1. Take care of your teeth and mouth. The first step to fighting bad breath is to take a good look at your oral hygiene. It is important to visit your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings. Additionally, if you usually brush your teeth only first thing in the morning and last thing at night, consider brushing your teeth more frequently.

New ‘Survival Herb Bank’ Gives You Access to God’s Amazing Medicine Chest

Try brushing after every meal — which may involve having a toothbrush and toothpaste with you at work or in your car — and floss your teeth twice a day.

Speaking of that toothbrush – when was the last time you got a new one? Replacing your toothbrush every two to three months can help keep your breath fresh.

Your teeth are not the only culprits when it comes to bad breath. Your tongue can harbor odor-causing dead cells, fungi and bacteria. Try scraping your tongue each morning with a spoon and then rinsing with water afterwards to decrease or eliminate the odor.

Simply place the spoon on the back of your tongue and then drag it slowly forward. Rinse well and then repeat several times. Include the sides of your tongue in this cleaning process.

9 All-Natural Cures For Recurring Bad Breath

Image source: Pixabay.com

2. Drink plenty of water. Did you realize that a dry mouth could play a role in bad breath? When you do not wash bacteria away with water, they can thrive on the food particles in your mouth. These germs then can release foul-smelling byproducts that cause bad breath.

Your body’s own natural saliva can do the trick, but if you are dehydrated, you may not be producing enough salvia to eliminate the bacteria. Aim to drink more water during the day, and try swishing it around your mouth to help eliminate mouth odor.

3. Consume enough zinc. A deficiency in the mineral zinc can be a contributing factor to bad breath. As an antimicrobial, zinc helps neutralize and eliminate harmful germs in the mouth. Try supplementing your diet with food rich in zinc, including pumpkin seeds, dark chocolate, sesame seeds and chickpeas.

4. Supplement with herbs and spices. Many items from your kitchen spice shelf or your herb garden can aid in eliminating bad breath when you chew them. Here are a few examples:

  • Cloves
  • Fennel
  • Dill
  • Cardamom
  • Anise seeds
  • Cinnamon
  • Parsley
  • Basil
  • Cilantro
9 All-Natural Cures For Recurring Bad Breath

Image source: Pixabay.com

5. Enjoy some citrus fruit. Eating an orange can be a simple and healthy way to fight bad breath. By stimulating your salivary glands, the citric acid also creates an acidic environment in which bacteria cannot thrive.

Another option is to nibble on a clean, small piece of lemon, lime or orange rind.

6. Create a natural mouth rinse. Many commercial mouthwashes contain alcohol, but you can easily create your own natural mouth rinse. Try gargling with a simple salt-water solution to help rid your mouth, throat and tonsils from bacteria.

Another option is to mix a cup of water with a teaspoon of baking soda to cleanse and to freshen your mouth. Squeeze in some lemon or lime juice, if you like, for flavor and for the added benefits of Vitamin C.

7. Consider probiotic foods. An overloaded digestive tract can contribute to breath problems. Basically, stomach problems can create a build-up of excess of gas that then exits your body through your mouth.

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Supplementing your diet with probiotic-rich foods such as yogurt, kombucha tea and fermented sauerkraut helps get your digestive system back in balance. Another idea is to mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with water and drink it prior to eating a meal to aid your digestive process.

9 All-Natural Cures For Recurring Bad Breath

Image source: Pixabay.com

8. Eat more raw foods. Many raw foods, such as apples, celery and carrots, can act as natural toothbrushes. Not only do they scrub your teeth as you chew, but they also can kill odor-causing bacteria. Some raw foods also have a high-water content that helps you produce more saliva.

9. Cleanse your body of toxins. Bad breath can be a sign that your body has a high level of toxins. Drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes can contribute to the problem of bad breath, for example.

A natural way to cleanse your body is by drinking stinging nettle tea. Stinging nettle is a powerful herb that can help eliminate toxins, boost adrenal function, stimulate the lymphatic system and increase the excretion of uric acid through the kidneys – all of which can help fight bad breath.

If you are taking any medications, talk with your doctor to see if your prescription could be causing dry mouth or otherwise could be contributing to a breath problem. Over-the-counter antihistamines, decongestants or diet pills also could be part of the problem.

Finally, bad breath could be a symptom of an underlying health issue, including anything from gum disease, to lactose intolerance, to diabetes. If you have tried the above natural remedies and still are experiencing bad breath, it may be time to see your doctor for a physical.

How do you fight bad breath? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

5 Easy-To-Grow ‘Medicine Chest’ Herbs You Can Plant Right Now

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5 Easy-To-Grow ‘Medicine Chest’ Herbs You Can Plant Right Now

Tarragon. Image source: Pixabay.com

 

Spring is a perfect time to start some herb seeds indoors. Planting culinary herb seeds not only saves you money, but it also provides you with the ability to make delicious meals. Most culinary herbs also have potent medicinal qualities as an additional reward.

How to Grow Herbs from Seed

By planting seeds you may be able to grow plants that aren’t readily available in your local garden center. If you do not have room for a garden, herbs make wonderful potted plants. Most herbs thrive in average soil. If you are planting them indoors, use special soil mixes which are designed for starting seeds. You may sow your seeds in individual pots or you may choose to cluster sow them.

Herb seeds are extremely tiny. Take care when sowing them; mix the seeds with a bit of dry sand or use seed-starting tools which are designed for planting tiny seeds. Some seeds are available with special coatings that make them easier to handle.

If you are planting outdoors, check the seed packets or with your county extension agent regarding proper planting times. Prepare your garden beds carefully by removing weeds, loosening the soil and tilling it ahead of time so that it isn’t overly wet.

Learn How To Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

If you plant your seeds in trays or in individual pots, water them from the bottom. Keep seedlings, indoors or out, moist but not overly wet.

Tender herbs may be started indoors and moved outside when the weather warms up. Introduce them to their outdoor environment gradually. Protect them from hot sun and wind when you first expose them to the outdoors.

Not sure which herbs to grow? Here’s some terrific culinary herbs with medicinal properties which are ideally grown from seeds:

5 Easy-To-Grow ‘Medicine Chest’ Herbs You Can Plant Right Now

Basil. Image source: Pixabay.com

1. Basil. This is a great herb to grow from seed. If you are like me, you will want lots of it. There are a wide array of basil types to grow. Small leafed, large leafed, lemon, purple, holy and cinnamon are just a few of the fantastic varieties of basil. If you live in a cool or cold climate, start your basil in pots. Basil is a tender plant which cannot tolerate cold temperatures. Only move it outdoors when there is no chance of frost. Basil grows in average soil and should be planted in full sun. In addition to livening up mealtime, basil is said to relieve respiratory, digestive and emotional imbalances.

2. Sage. I grow sage from seed because there are several varieties and some of them are very attractive. Nibbling on one sage leaf daily can relieve hot flashes. Sage soothes sore throats and is a wonderful seasoning for poultry and savory dishes. You can make an antibacterial wash from sage which may be used for first aid. Like basil, sage thrives in average soil. It can tolerate poor soil as well. Grow sage in a sunny location.

Just 30 Grams Of This Survival Superfood Provides More Nutrition Than An Entire Meal!

5 Easy-To-Grow ‘Medicine Chest’ Herbs You Can Plant Right Now

Dill. Image source: Pixabay.com

3. Dill. It isn’t just for making pickles; dill is a beautiful garden plant. If you have children, be sure to provide them with some dill seeds to plant. Dill is extremely easy to grow. It makes a lovely tea for relieving belly aches. The plants produce attractive foliage and flowers. If you plan to do some pickling, grow the taller varieties, as they produce the most numerous and largest seed heads. Otherwise, plant the shorter varieties as they are more attractive and provide you with plenty of dill weed foliage. Dill thrives in poor or average soil in the sunshine. For a non-stop supply of dill, don’t plant all of your seeds at once. Sow seeds every few weeks all spring and summer long.

4. Tarragon. This one can be difficult to grow, particularly in hot climates. Try Mexican mint tarragon instead. You may know this plant as Texas tarragon. It has lovely yellow-orange flowers. Mexican mint tarragon grows in sunny locations in average soil. The anise flavored leaves are soothing to upset stomachs.

5. Mustard. Mustard is very easy to grow. White mustard is what most commercial mustard products are made from, but if you prefer a spicier, more pungent variety, grow brown mustard. In addition to flavoring pickles and savory dishes, making your own mustard is very simple. Mustard isn’t fussy about soil. It may be used medicinally as a warming herb to relieve respiratory congestion or blended into topical remedies.

Final thoughts

There are hundreds of herbs which you can grow easily and economically from seeds. If you don’t need a whole packet of seeds, get together with friends and have a seed exchange. You will all have a vast array of herbs at your fingertips, which you can use for cooking and healing.

Which herbs would you add to this list? Share your ideas in the section below:

Learn The Real Truth About Vaccinations. Read More Here.

How to Make Herbal Tinctures!

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How to Make Herbal Tinctures Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Join me this Mother’s Day, 5/8/16, as I demystify the process of how to make herbal tinctures. Tincture-making is one of the most important herbal skills you need to have under your belt. Herbal tinctures, also called herbal extracts, provide a thorough extraction of the … Continue reading How to Make Herbal Tinctures!

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Prepping For A Pandemic w/ Cat Ellis

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Prepping For A Pandemic w/ Cat Ellis Josh “7P’s of Survival” This episode of the 7 P’s of Survival Radio Show we will have our good friend Cat Ellis on the show talking about her new book “Prepping for a Pandemic, Lifesaving Supplies, Skills and Plans for Surviving an Outbreak.” Each year pandemics strike, and they … Continue reading Prepping For A Pandemic w/ Cat Ellis

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Is your liver healthy?

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Is your liver healthy? Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” Your eyes and skin aren’t jaundiced, and you feel ok. So, your liver must be fine, right? Wrong. The fact is, most people couldn’t tell if their liver were healthy or not without getting a panel done at their doctor’s office. The obvious signs of disease, things … Continue reading Is your liver healthy?

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Mint, Calendula, & Plantain Herbal Bath Salts

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Make your own herbal bath salts with this recipe | PreparednessMama

How to make your own herbal bath salts….and other homemade products I collect recipes. Useful recipes for soaps, lotions, creams, and cleaning products. I have too many to count and I’m sure there are more to collect. These recipes often give me the inspiration to create my own variations and I love seeing what creative things […]

The post Mint, Calendula, & Plantain Herbal Bath Salts appeared first on PreparednessMama.

The Herbal First Aid Kit!

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The Herbal First Aid Kit Simplified Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live” One of my listeners emailed me a question about first aid kits, and I thought it would make for a great show topic. Jerry wanted to know how to build an easy, affordable first aid kit with herbal and natural remedies. However, it also … Continue reading The Herbal First Aid Kit!

The post The Herbal First Aid Kit! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

9 Medicinal Herbs For Fighting Pain

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9 Medicinal Herbs For Fighting Pain I don’t know about you, but I’m no scientist. I can’t name any of the ingredients found in commonly used OTC drugs, and I certainly can’t make them. As a matter of fact, if and when possible, I prefer to take a more “natural” approach to treating my pain. …

Continue reading »

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Just For Fun on a Spring Day- Dandelion Petal Jelly!

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dandelionjelly

A couple weeks ago, a friend of a friend remarked during dinner about her enthusiasm for making dandelion jelly. “Tastes like honey…” was her commentary and since I love honey, I purposed to create this nectar of the dandelion at my first opportunity.  (In addition to jelly, you can create a syrup or wine from the blossoms as well.)

dandelion jelly

Dandelion Petals Have Some Medicinal Value

In my research, in most of my go-to resources, I could find no mention of any real medicinal value to the flowers, fresh or as an infusion (the leaves and roots are another story), until I dug into Healing Wise by Susun Weed.  (I think it is too funny that that is her name and she is an herbalist!) According to her, dandelion flowers are good for beautification, pain relief and heart health.  She says fresh blossoms steeped in boiling water for at least an hour are amazing for beautifying your face and dealing with just about any facial skin anomoly you might have – putting the strained flowers on your face first for a while and then rinsing off with the liquid w/o following with plain water.  I must try this!

She recommends making dandelion wine for a heart strengthener and claims that an infusion will rid one of aches of all kinds -head, back, stomach, cramps, etc.!  In addition, if you infuse an oil with the blossoms and then rub it into painful, sore and stiff areas, it should help with stiff necks, arthritic joints and such. I have infused St. John’s Wort in oil for this reason…hmmm – I think this year I will add in some dandelion heads!

Now, I’m not sure if any healing value is left after all the processing of a jelly, but it is fun to just know that this is a creation from a gift of nature.  These are my favorite ventures in life!

dandelion jelly

What To Do On A Sunny Day

Yesterday was the sunny, pleasant, relaxed day I was looking for to pick the flowerheads. Little did I know it would take me 3 hours(!!) to collect enough flower petals (a loosely-packed quart) to do a batch of jelly! This is one situation where you want to ask all hands on deck to help because otherwise, I’m just not sure the result justifies the time expense! But for me, I was just enjoying the sun and downtime as I picked enough flowers and de-bracted them.

dandelion jellydandelion jelly

Don’t Leave Any Green!

Dandelion greens are bitters, so that includes the bracts that hold in the flower petals…it is important that if you want a sweet product, that you remove all the green parts! This is very time consuming! I used my thumbnails and broke each base in half and then ran my thumbnail along the base of the flower head to release the petals. Another friend says you just have to develop a technique of twisting the bracts while squeezing them and the petals will just fall into your hand.

 

It takes a lot of flower heads to get a quart of petals and honestly, I just had to be done at one point and shook up my jar to expand the volume! (They had indeed settled down into the jar and gotten moist.)

dandelion jelly

Make the Infusion First

I then brought the petals indoors and boiled them in a pot with 2 quarts of fresh, non-chlorinated water for 10 minutes. I decided to let this infusion sit overnight for the best potency. In the morning, I strained twice, first through a double layer of cheesecloth and then through a coffee filter. I had 6 cups of liquid.

dandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jelly

Then Make Jelly!

Using Pomona’s Universal Pectin, I came up with the following recipe for 6 cups of dandelion tea:

3/4 cup fresh (if possible) lemon juice
zest from two lemons
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scooped into the liquid
3 cups sugar
2 Tbs. calcium water
2 Tbs + 1/2 tsp pectin

Then I just followed the general directions for using Pomonas. Altogether I got 5 1/2 pints and 8 4-oz jars. (About 4 1/2 pints)

dandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jellydandelion jelly

My honest first impression was that it tasted like lemon meringue pie!  This recipe jelled nicely and has a very pleasant delicate lemony-vanilla flavor.

I think this is going to be a very nice accompaniment to popovers!

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Ask Cat- Herbal Q&A

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Ask Cat- Herbal Q&A
Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live

4-10-16 Ask Cat 350This week on Herbal Prepper Live, I will be taking your questions during the show. Ask me anything you want about herbs, herbal medicine, and how to use herbs to be better prepared.

Here’s how this works. You bring your questions and concerns. I will bring my 20+ years of working with herbs. I will do my best to answer your questions. If I don’t know the answer, odds are, I know where to find it. It might even become the topic for a future show.
Have you been worried about being cut off from medications post-disaster? Not sure what to stock up on for your family? Then send me your questions, or join me live during the broadcast!
How to submit a question
To get your questions answered, there are three things you can do:

1. Send me an email with “Ask Cat” in the subject line. Please send your email to cat@herbalprepper.com
2. Be live in the chat room during the live broadcast on 4/10/16. Write your question in the chat room.
3. Call into the show during the live broadcast. The number to do so is 347-202-0228.

Please be aware that I can’t do a full herbal consultation in just a couple of minutes. Also, I’m not a doctor, and I can’t diagnose or prescribe anything. What I can do is answer your questions about herbal remedies for common ailments, as well as point you in the right direction to look for more information.

This type of Q&A always leads to interesting discussions about plants, about health, and our ability to look after our own health care when there may not be any doctors on hand. If you’ve been wondering what to grow, where to get seeds, or how to respond with herbal first aid, you won’t want to miss this show. This episode is all about you. What do you want to know?
Visit Herbal Prepper Website: HERE! 
Join us for Herbal Prepper Live “LIVE SHOW” every Sunday 7:00/Et 6:00Ct 4:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat

Listen to this broadcast or download “Ask Cat- Herbal Q&A” in player below!

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Archived shows of Herbal Prepper Live at bottom of THIS PAGE!

3 Types of Herbal First Aid Kits

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herbal first aid kit

Herbal first aid is a great skill to have in your preparedness tool kit, and although I’m going to go over some of the contents of 3 types of herbal first aid kits with you in this article, it’s important to remember that herbal first aid is also a set of skills. You need to learn the correct doses, how to prepare herbs into usable form, plus all of the regular first aid (and wilderness first aid) skills to go with them.

Being an herbalist in general is a pretty good background for survival skills- you already know many herbs and the basics of how the body works- but I’ve taken classes with The Human Path, led by a former Green Beret medic and herbalist, Sam Coffman, to up my survival herbalism game. You can read an article Sam wrote for Survival Mom about the benefits of learning herbalism for disaster preparedness here.

Based on what I’ve been learning, I now have three types of herbal first aid kits. My everyday carry kit is small — I can fit it in a purse or tuck it into a backpack with no problem. I’ve even heard of people making their EDC (EveryDay Carry) herbal kits small enough to fit into a cargo pants pocket for times when they want to take it to a sporting event or other venue that doesn’t allow bags. My home first aid kit is much larger, with a wider variety and larger quantities of things for everyday comfort. The field kit/evacuation kit covers the herbs I would want to have on hand during a natural disaster or pandemic, but works equally well for rounding out my home first aid kit or as an organized bug-in supply.

Here’s a little more about each type and what I’ve included.

Herbal First Aid Kits: Everyday Carry

For everyday carry, small and durable is good. The idea is to keep a few things on hand that help make your life easier until you can get home. For example, use 1 ounce nalgene bottles, or make single serving packets out of drinking straws (I like this tutorial.) You can use a fanny pack, the kind of travel pouches used to organize a carry on or suitcase, or a makeup bag to hold your herbal EDC. A ziploc bag that goes in and out of different bags also works well. Don’t leave your herbal EDC in the car, though, because herbs and tinctures are heat sensitive and lose potency quickly in a hot car.

Some things that I’ve included in mine:

  • Meadowsweet extract — This herb can be useful for indigestion and pain.
  • Rose/Hawthorn/Albizzia extract (equal parts each) — An uplifting nervine, tis is my go-to for clearer thinking and feeling calmer after an emotional shock to the system.
  • Cayenne — Cayenne has several first aid uses. Dr. John Christopher spoke highly of it for hemorrhaging and for heart attacks, as it appears to equalize the circulation. It’s also very handy during cold and flu season for clearing the sinuses. A little cayenne is also my secret ingredient for sore throats, along with honey and lemon. In a pinch, you can get a wedge of lemon, a cup of hot water and a packet of honey at a restaurant. Mix the honey into the water and squeeze the lemon into the cup. Add a little cayenne and sip slowly.  
  • Black Cohosh/Jamaican Dogwood/ Cramp Bark extract (equal parts) — I learned about this blend from Dr. Aviva Romm’s website, and love it. This is a really potent blend. Helps provide comfort when dealing with pretty much any kind of pain — headaches, injuries, menstrual cramps, etc.
  • Plantain salve — My favorite salve blend is bright green and has plantain, chaparral, goldenseal, and bloodroot, among other things, but use whatever herbal salve you like the best.
  • Witch hazel extract — This is handy when cleaning up cuts and scrapes. I like to keep a travel size bottle in my EDC

Home First Aid

Personally, I have a full fledged home apothecary, but then again I’m a die hard herbalist, and constantly work with new recipes and other personal experiments. If you like, you can take a peek at my apothecary. Maintaining a home apothecary is a skill all of its own — things need to be rotated in and out, records kept, resources managed. I find it highly rewarding, but if you want a smaller home first aid kit (completely understandable), I talk about some of my must-have herbs in An Herbalist’s First Aid Kit: What I Use and Why. It covers 12 versatile herbs you might want to consider, and some ideas for preparations like eyewash, liniment, and an herbal spray for sore throat.

Important herbal categories for the home first aid kit can also include:

  • Digestive wellness: Include herbs that soothe the digestive tract like marshmallow root and meadowsweet; or astringents like blackberry root and sumac that are traditionally used to dry up bouts of diarrhea.
  • Herbal comfort for aches and pains: Black cohosh, jamaican dogwood, corydalis, valerian, passionflower, cramp bark, and willow can make good choices here.
  • Immunity and lymphatic support: Herbs that help the body during a viral or bacterial challenge like cleavers, violet leaves, and red clover for the lymphatic system; herbs that support the immune system more directly like elderberry and eleuthero.

You will want to keep your home first aid kit in an area that is easily accessible, but also out of direct sunlight and away from dampness. The basement and the bathroom are probably not good choices, because the higher humidity in these areas can take a toll on your supplies. A hallway closet or spare kitchen cabinet are good locations.

Herbal Field Kit/Evacuation Kit

A field kit or evacuation kit is probably going to be the most technical type of herbal first aid kit that you put together. For durability, use nalgene bottles. My field and evacuation kit focuses mainly on worst case scenarios — the kind of scenario where higher medical care is unavailable for short or long term. It’s heavy on the herbs I would want to have during a natural disaster or pandemic. It’s a much better idea to focus on a selection of formulas for this kit, rather than single herbs. That level of detail is a little beyond what I can cover in this post, so I’ve added a brief list of some of my favorite herbs that can be used for each category below, as a place for you to start with your own research.

  • Wound care/physical trauma — angelica, albizzia, St. John’s wort, arnica, yarrow
  • Lung support in case of smoke or dust, respiratory problems — lobelia, elecampane, horehound, licorice, marshmallow
  • Digestive tract — sumac, black walnut, marshmallow, blackberry root, Oregon grape, digestive bitters
  • Herbal antibiotics and antivirals — bidens, sida, artemisia, isatis (You will notice there’s not a lot on this list. Read The Truth About Herbal Antibiotics to find out why.)
  • Lymphatic herbs that support the immune system — cleavers and red root
  • Adaptogens that maximize overall resiliency and wellness– eleuthero, rhodiola
  • Nervines that offer strong support during shock, trauma, grief, and depression– angelica, calamus, albizia, valerian, holy basil

It’s also a good idea to tuck in a few herbal and first aid references.

Of course, this is just a glimpse at the botanical portions of my first aid kits. You will also need other basic to advanced first aid supplies like bandages and sutures (and the skills to use them).  Remember to review the contents of your herbal kits frequently, at least once a month, to check for leaks and to stay familiar with the way your kit is packed. Like all of your prep kits, it’s really helpful to pack your kit the same way every time, so that you can easily find what you need, when you need it. Feel free to use the herbs I’ve suggested as a guideline. Chances are, you will begin to develop your own tastes and preferences the more you work with herbs, and that’s a good thing! I wish you the best of health as you work on your herbal preps!

More Resources

Here are some additional resources for herbal/natural health:

herbal first aid kit

7 Forgotten Plants The Native Americans Used For Medicine

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7 Forgotten Plants The Native Americans Used For Medicine

 

My great-grandmother was an Ojibway Indian. They’re a tribe from Canada, and their Native American cousins were the Cherokee. She and my great grandfather were highly self-sufficient, as she often used herbs and plants from nature for a variety of reasons.

There was a time in our history when a pharmacy was defined by nature. Over generations, Native Americans discovered cures and treatments for various ailments by accident and tradition. Most herbs were used as an infusion in a tea, but some were pulverized and applied directly to the skin. Here are seven “forgotten ones” that may be growing in your backyard or a meadow near you:

1. Sage

Sage grows wild across many parts of the Great Plains and the southwest. It’s commonly used in cooking and is actually the dominant flavor note in dishes like bread stuffing and poultry. It also has medicinal qualities.

Learn How You Can Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

Native Americans made an infusion of tea from sage leaves to treat indigestion and sore throats, coughs and fever. An extract made by crushing the leaves also can heal the skin as a treatment for burns and chafing. It has powerful antibacterial and astringent properties, as well.

2. Yarrow

7 Forgotten Plants The Native Americans Used For Medicine

Yarrow. Image source: Pixabay.com

Yarrow was commonly used by Native Americans to stop bleeding. The feathery nature of the plant, plus its chemical properties, encourage clotting. It also has anti-spasmodic and anti-inflammatory benefits and was sometimes taken as a tea to relieve indigestion.

3. Black cohosh

You don’t hear a lot about black cohosh, but its roots were often used as a cough remedy by Native Americans. It also was referred to as the woman’s friend for its estrogenic properties and its ability to relive arthritis and menstrual cramps. It was typically brewed as a dark tea.

4. Feverfew

As the name implies, this herb relieves fever. It also was used as a pain reliever for headaches, including migraines. It has a mild tranquilizing effect. The leaves or flowers were typically chewed rather than infused because it makes for a particularly bitter tea. It has anti-inflammatory benefits and was sometimes taken to relieve arthritis.

5. Goldenrod

7 Forgotten Plants The Native Americans Used For Medicine

Goldenrod. Image source: Pixabay.com

Contrary to popular belief, goldenrod does not induce allergies anywhere close to the degree of its reputation. It’s an indigenous plant that grows across North America, and its flowers and leaves were often infused in a tea to treat urinary tract infections and as a general anti-inflammatory treatment. It also was used as a tea to treat upper respiratory inflammation and congestion.

6. Plantain

The common plantain plant grows everywhere from urban front yards to natural meadows. Its flat leaves and central, green seed-stalk make it easy to find. It makes a good natural salad, although the mature leaves are a bit bitter.

New ‘Survival Herb Bank’ Gives You Access to God’s Amazing Medicine Chest

It’s a good source of vitamin K, which is a natural blood thinner and it may be why Native Americans used it as a topical and oral treatment for snake bites. Personally, I’d get to the hospital as fast as possible after a snake bite, but when there were no hospitals this seemed to be a treatment of choice. In fact, Native Americans referred to it as “snakeweed.”

7. Rose hips

7 Forgotten Plants The Native Americans Used For Medicine

Rose hips. Image source: Pixabay.com

There is no other wild plant that possesses more vitamin C than rose hips. They’re the end result of flowering wild roses and usually are small red buds about one-fourth an inch in diameter. Native Americans figured out the healing properties of rose hips as a boost to the immune system. We have no idea how they figured this out, but over generations some things become apparent.

They can be chewed raw or dried, ground in a tea, or incorporated into other food. I’ve chewed them raw, and in my opinion they taste terrible. I’d strongly recommend chopping them and adding them to something else.

Final Thoughts: Be Careful Out There

I’ve instructed many classes and field excursions on the subject of natural food and medicines. Always make sure you know what you’re eating or about to ingest. There are more plants that are poisonous than are good for you. Take the time to do some research and always start with small portions of anything.

What plants would you add to this list? Share your advice in the section below:

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

600 Reasons Turmeric May Be The World’s Most Important Herb And You Need To Be Growing It

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600 Reasons Turmeric May Be The World’s Most Important Herb And You Need To Be Growing It Turmeric is a wonderful, powerful herb. I personally love the flavor of it but after reading more into this herb I need to start eating it more often! Some of the most amazing demonstrated properties include: Destroying Multi-Drug Resistant Cancer, Destroying Cancer …

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The post 600 Reasons Turmeric May Be The World’s Most Important Herb And You Need To Be Growing It appeared first on SHTF & Prepping Central.

Balcony Gardening – Big Food Production in Small Spaces

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Balcony Gardening Basics

If you’re balcony gardening, you may be feeling sorry for yourself.

Don’t!

View it as an exciting challenge instead.

In my film 13 Tips, Tricks and Lessons for Homesteading an Acre, I share the story of how I used to long for a large space, wishing for 10, 15 or even 20 acres I could farm.

After working my acre for over five years, I no longer feel the need for a big space. I’ve even caught myself looking with longing at small urban backyards and apartment porches.

Why?

Because of the power of focused effort. Balcony gardening allows you to create a little paradise oasis without killing yourself.

Why Balcony Gardening Rocks

When you spread all your work across a large space, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. It’s hard to make everything look the way you want. It’s hard to keep 100 trees healthy and happy unless you’re a full-time gardener or farmer. It’s hard to pick the bugs off 600 cabbages. It’s hard to harvest 10 beds of potatoes.

But if you have a small space garden, you can make it incredible with much less time and effort.

I learned this lesson when I owned a small cottage in Tennessee. The cost of fixing up that little 3/1 house was cheap. We had to replace the roof: it cost $3,500. Sure, that’s a chunk of change — but it’s NOTHING like the cost of fixing the roof on a big, complicated multi-story house.

You could repaint a room with a gallon of paint in an afternoon. You could sand and varnish all the floors in a weekend.

It’s the same way with balcony gardening. If you only have a little area, you can really make it look incredible for only a little bit of money.

Sure, you’re not going to be able to grow everything you like. A pecan tree is out of the question (unless you make it into a bonsai!) and grain corn would be a bit tough; yet you could pack in a lot of plants by growing vertically and sticking to species that are miserly with their space considerations.

Trying to grow food in a window sill? Check this out: Grow Sprouts and Microgreens Indoors All Winter Long

Plant what you love. Make your balcony an escape from the madness. Put a little table out there amongst your plants and start writing your novel.

Here are just a few edible plants I would grow on a balcony.

Plants for Balcony Gardening

Ginger

Ginger needs shade, so if your balcony doesn’t get a lot of direct light, plant ginger! Roots from the store will usually grow. Bury them in a pot about 4-6″ deep and wait. They’ll come up. A year or two later, when they go dormant in the fall, you can tip the pot out and harvest the mass of roots — or just break off a little here and there as you need it.

Basil

Basil is a no-brainer. Start from seeds in a pot of well-drained soil in at least half sun. If you can find African blue basil, great. It’s a perennial version you won’t have to replant. Just know this: you need to buy your first African basil as a plant, or beg a cutting from a friend. It doesn’t grow from seeds.

Bush Beans

Bush beans are so easy to grow that it’s almost embarrassing. A half-barrel planter should be able to host about 12 plants, which will each give you a couple handfuls of pods. Beans like lots of sun, so if you have a shady balcony you likely won’t have much luck.

Strawberries

Strawberries are the consummate container plant. They even have their own special planters. A few years ago I bought my sister-in-law a hanging basket of strawberries and she’s been keeping them alive for years and harvesting berries off and on. Strawberries will take about half sun but produce better with more.

Blueberries

Blueberries work remarkably well in good-sized pots. Plant them in rotted pine bark (not normal potting soil) and they’ll be quite happy. Blueberries also love coffee grounds, so just empty ’em all in the top of your blueberry pots.

Dwarf Mulberry

Dwarf mulberry varieties are shrubbier than their tree relatives and can easily be kept growing at only a few feet tall. Some will produce through the year. Just know this: dwarf mulberries have vigorous roots and will fill a pot right up, then get thirsty all the time. I’d put the bottoms of their pots in trays of water so they always have some to sip.

Oregano

Oregano is really easy to grow in pots and will take shade or sun. Don’t overwater it. The vining habit of oregano makes it nice for hanging baskets, though my permaculture side would encourage you to just grow it as a ground cover around the base of one of your larger balcony gardening additions, like the following small tree.

Japanese Persimmon

I love Japanese persimmon trees. Though they may not be the most productive addition to your balcony gardening plans, they do make marvelous fruits and are easy to grow in a large pot. Unlike many fruit trees they can be kept small as well.

Kumquat

The kumquat is another excellent small tree, and likely more productive than the Japanese persimmon. They do well in pots and will handle half to full sun. I’ve also seen some citrus growing in full shade and fruiting; however, I wouldn’t count on that.

Key Lime

The Key lime is a nice small tree, so why not add Key lime pie to your balcony gardening? The downside for this little tree is its brutal thorns. Be sure they’re off to the side where they won’t scratch limbs and tear your visitors’ clothing off. Unless that’s the idea.

Lemon

Lemons are also easy, easy, easy to grow in pots. They’re not very big trees to begin with and the constraint of growing in a pot will help keep them from getting out of control. Half to full sun.

Calamondin

I covered this tree in two videos last year — first, one on the fruit in general, then a second one on how my wife and I made whiskey sours from this incredibly flavorful little citrus. Calamondins are very beautiful trees with nicely-scented blossoms. They’re worth growing just for the way they look. Bonus: some trees will fruit twice a year.

Turmeric

Turmeric is a form of ginger and is a high-value crop that gives curry its yellow coloration and earthy spice. Grow it the same as ginger. Curry on your balcony — how cool is that?

Hot Peppers

Hot peppers do really well in pots — I’ve seen some huge ones growing like shrubs. They’ll live for years under the right conditions. Add some spice to your life. Make sure your balcony has plenty of sunshine before planting peppers — they like it bright and hot.

Cranberry Hibiscus

Cranberry hibiscus is a dark red-leafed perennial hibiscus with tart leaves that are excellent in Caesar salads, plus it makes a nice hedge. They also have wonderful flowers and can be pruned as needed.

Coffee

Coffee is a great potted plant for shady spaces. If it’s freezing cold outside, let it live in your living room until warmer conditions return. The yields aren’t high but the novelty is great. Bonus: you can use the leaves for tea!

Rosemary

Rosemary likes lots of sunshine and not too much water. Give it a well-draining mix and a place in the sun and it will live for years and spice up your life.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes may actually be easier to grow in a pot on a balcony than they are to grow in the garden. The pest problems are fewer, plus they get perfect soil from the beginning. Make sure they have lots of sunshine and some breeze for pollination. If there’s no breeze, shake the plants now and again when they’re in bloom to jostle the pollen into the right place.

Lettuce

Lettuce is really easy to grow in pots. It’ll take sun or shade. Buy a packet of leaf lettuce seeds, fill a good-sized pot with soil, rip open the seed packet and sprinkle the seeds around, then lightly knead them into the soil. Water, and in a week or two little lettuces will start emerging. In a month, you can start picking leaves… and you’ll have free salads for months.

Read about fertilizing your container-grown edible plants here: How to Fertilize Your Container Gardens

More Inspiration for Balcony Gardeners

Here’s a YouTube video where I answer a couple of questions from people without much gardening space. In it, I also pretend to be John Cougar Mellencamp:

Low light? See a functioning indoor fodder growing system here: How To Grow Food In Small Dark Places; Indoor Fodder System

And here’s Bill Mollison, co-founder of the permaculture movement, showing you how to do balcony gardening: (he starts talking about balconies at about 9:06)

One of these days I may write a book on balcony gardening and gardening in small spaces.

I’ve also considered deliberately creating a small, fenced in patio at my new house as a test small space garden. Say a 6′ x 10′ space I could use as a proving ground for some of my ideas. That way I could be more help to the many of you who are living in apartments, rental houses or urban locations. I could then plant as much as possible in that space and record yields just as I do on the rest of my homestead. I’ll bet you I could pull off at least 200lbs of food in that size space over a year — probably more.

Think trellises. Deep pots. Tight crops. High-dollar vegetables and roots.

I’ll think on this idea more. For now, balcony gardeners: don’t be upset with what you have. Embrace the challenge and let me know what you grow in 2016 — I’d love to see it.

The post Balcony Gardening – Big Food Production in Small Spaces appeared first on The Grow Network.

Herb Spirals: The Best Way To Grow Maximum Plants In Minimum Space

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Herb Spirals: The Best Way To Grow Maximum Plants In Minimum Space

Spring is finally here, and it is time to plan for the upcoming gardening season. While it is easy to just get back into the routine of how you have typically gardened in the past, it is worth considering that there are now many techniques that can make your gardening easier, more productive and even require less space.

One of these making-gardening-easier techniques is known as an herb spiral, a specialized raised-bed gardening method that originated from permaculture.* An herb spiral is essentially a three-dimensional helix that coils up to 20-30 linear feet of growing space into a vertical spiral that measures approximately five feet across.

The mound shape of an herb spiral ensures that plants are growing in all directions and in a variety of microclimates. For example, the sunny south-facing slope creates hotter conditions than in the north-facing slope, and the soil at the top of the spiral will be higher than the soil at the bottom.

Need Non-GMO Herb Seeds For Your Herb Spiral? Click Here!

An herb spiral has many of the advantages of a raised bed garden, but with additional features:

  • Herb spirals allow you to easily grow many different plants within arm’s reach without the need to bend over very far to access most of them. This is great for older and wiser folks and those with back problems!
  • Because of its raised bed nature and the fact that you can add the best soil and materials to grow in, herb spirals allow you to grow a productive garden despite poor soil conditions on site, and to significantly reduce the opportunities of weed growth from seeds that are present in the soil on site.
  • You can take advantage of the opportunity to grow different plant varieties in a variety of microclimates (e.g., hot and dry conditions at the top as well as moist and cooler conditions at the bottom).

There are other reasons you should consider an herb spiral. For example:

1. Grow a variety of plants. Although herb spirals are ideal places to grow herbs, you can grow many different types of small plants in them, such as strawberries, lettuce salad greens, and flowers. Both annual and perennial plants can be grown in herb spirals.

2. Build it within an afternoon. Because the process of building an herb spiral simply involves laying down bricks or rocks on top of one another into a spiral pattern, you don’t need any special carpentry or masonry skills to build one.

3. Save space. Because you are primarily growing vertically instead of horizontally, you can grow many plants within a much smaller garden space than a traditional herb garden.

4. They look beautiful. An herb spiral is a very attractive addition to your garden and yard. After your neighbors see your beautiful new herb spiral, they might want one of their own!

New “Survival Herb Bank” Gives You Access to God’s Amazing Medicine Chest

Read to get started? Then try these tips for successful construction and maintenance …

Add additional compostable substrate materials to your herb spiral at the beginning of each garden season if the growing substrate in your herb spiral is composed primarily of organic materials such as straw, twigs, logs and leaves that break down over the course of a gardening season.

Story continues below video

 

To help provide some bulk and support for the growing substrate in your spiral, you can place some rocks, concrete rubble or subsoil at the base and add your topsoil for growing in over that. Primarily using soil for the bulk of the substrate in your herb spiral will help to support your growing medium structurally, but you will want to regularly enrich the soil with organic matter or compost, just like you would in any other garden.

To build the structure of your herb spiral, you can certainly buy new rocks or bricks, but an herb spiral can also be constructed using extra rocks or bricks that you have lying around on your property.

You can also check with your neighbors or on websites like Craigslist to see if anyone is getting rid of these materials for free. This typically occurs in the spring, when people are doing landscaping projects in their yard. Access to a pickup truck or a trailer will come in very handy to haul these materials!

Put down a few layers of cardboard prior to laying down any stones or bricks to keep weeds from being able to grow through your spiral.

Build your herb spiral close to your back door, where you can easily access it and harvest fresh herbs and other plants for preparing meals in your kitchen.

Do you have any tips on building an herb spiral? Share them in the section below:

*Permaculture is an ecologically-inspired design system founded in Australia in the mid-1970s for sustainable living and land use that can be applied to many areas of our modern lives, including gardening, farming, building design and local economies. Permaculture design projects are being used today on both small and large scales around the world.

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

Homemade vs. Store Bought: Make Your Own Sauces, Dips and Dressings

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homemade vs store bought

Let’s face it, life is busy and we all love convenience. Especially me. Instant anything works. Most of us have many bottles of something in the back pantry that we can pour over the chicken before we toss it in the oven or a can of sauce that we dump over warm pasta. Oh how I love dinners that I can just assemble instead of prepare! Sometimes I have made real homemade dinners, but most were semi homemade. That is how many of our family dinners have been most of my adult life. No one complained.

A few years ago, I slowly converted our family to eating food as close to the way as nature intended. Think of it as an “almost” whole food diet. You’ll notice I stated that it was a slow conversion. I did not want the family to notice too much and show resistance to the new menu. Much of the change was welcomed and easy to do. What became a challenge were the bottled items that we dip, dump, marinade and pour. Many of these foods have a high sodium and/or sugar content, which we were trying to cut back on. So began our endeavor to find recipes that we could make ourselves. We found recipes that were flavorful, easy to make and sometimes have more than one use.

Implementing these recipes with what I had in my food storage was also a consideration. I wanted to maintain a variety of foods that could be versatile in different recipes. For example, a can of tomatoes could be used for a homemade or a semi homemade dish. So a variety of store bought foods, along with more “whole foods” sit side by side in my pantry.

One item that is most helpful is my Kolder Salad Dressing Bottle. It has 8 different recipes on the glass bottle, along with the fill lines for each ingredient. No recipes to keep track of or measuring cups to clean. It is all on the bottle! There are other bottles available, the Charcoal Companion Marinade Bottle and Helen Chen’s Asian Kitchen Easy Stir-Fry Sauce Bottle. These are inexpensive and can be found on Amazon.com.

I am sharing some yummy recipes that are simple to prepare, that use common ingredients and are easy to store. In many of these, I have reduced the amount of salt or have used a sugar substitute. Experiment and tweak them to suit your personal tastes. Enjoy!

Homemade vs Store Bought: Simple Homemade Recipes

Homemade Creamy Avocado Dressing

Ingredients
1 large ripe avocado
1 large jalapeno, seeded
2 tablespoons fresh, minced cilantro
2 tablespoons sour cream
½ cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons milk
½ teaspoon cumin
Salt to taste
Instructions
1. Skin and pit the avocado.
2. In a blender, add all ingredients together. Pulse until smooth.
3. It can be stored in refrigerator for 3-4 days. Makes 12 ounces.

 

Italian Herb Dressing

Ingredients
⅓ cup olive oil
⅓ cup white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
1½ teaspoons honey or maple syrup (I used honey)
Pinch salt
Instructions
1. Add wet ingredients in a bowl and stir together.
2. Add the dry items in a separate bowl.
3. Add both wet to dry together and mix.
Notes: Some people mix the wet and dry ingredients together in a blender bottle or jar with lid and shake. Remember, the oil will solidify when kept in the fridge. Let it warm to room temperature before serving. Makes 1 cup of dressing that will last a few weeks in the fridge. Recipe can be found here.

 

Homemade Balsamic Vinaigrette

Ingredients
⅓ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
½ tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic minced or pressed
¼ scant teaspoon ground mustard
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Instructions
Mix all the ingredients in a mason jar or other container with a lid. Shake it up. Let it warm to room temperature before serving. Makes ½ cup
Original recipe.

 

Healthy Honey Mustard Dressing

Ingredients
½ cup plain Greek yogurt (vegans can try coconut yogurt)
2 tablespoons yellow mustard
1½ tablespoons raw honey (maple syrup to keep it vegan)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Instructions
Mix ingredients in a bowl or jar. This will stay good for about 1 week.  Makes 1 cup. Recipe can be found at this link.

Easy Homemade Fudge Sauce

Ingredients
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons butter
⅓ cup sugar
⅓ cup heavy whipping cream or evaporated milk
2 tablespoons water
Pinch of salt
Instructions
1. Melt butter and chocolate chips in sauce pan.
2. Add cream, sugar, water and salt. Mix together and bring to a boil.
3. Reduce heat, continue to boil for 9 minutes. Occasionally stir to prevent scorching.
4. Take off heat and allow the sauce to sit for a few minutes. While warm, drizzle over ice cream.
5. Left over fudge sauce can be stored in the refrigerator. Microwave to reheat. Recipe can be found here.

Easy Homemade Caramel Sauce

Ingredients
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup butter
½ cup heavy whipping cream
Pinch of salt
½ teaspoon vanilla
Instructions
1. Mix brown sugar, butter, cream, and salt in a sauce pan. Cook over a medium heat until sauce boils.
2. Allow sauce to boil for 2 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent scorching.
3. Add vanilla and stir. Allow the sauce to sit for a few minutes. Great with ice cream or apples. Serves 12
Recipe can be found here.

Easy Semi-Homemade Recipes

Taco Salad Dressing

1 part French dressing and 1 part salsa. Shake and serve.

Semi-Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix

Ingredients
4 cups powdered milk
21.8 oz. box Nestle Nesquik
16 oz. instant coffee creamer
1 cup powdered sugar
Instructions
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Pour into an air tight storage container. Fill mug (about 8 oz.) with warm water or milk. Add 3-5 heaping tablespoons of cocoa mix and stir. I found this recipe here.

Semi-Homemade Caesar Dressing

Ingredients
1 cup Ken’s Creamy Caesar Dressing
3 cloves minced garlic
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
Instructions
Pulse all ingredients in a blender for 10-15 seconds. Store in a jar in the refrigerator. Recipe can be found at this link.

Semi Homemade Enchilada Sauce

Ingredients
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 cup onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
Salt, pinch
1 (14.5 ounce) petite diced tomatoes, undrained
2 tablespoons ground ancho chile pepper
2 tablespoons ground pasilla chile pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 (28 ounce) RED enchilada sauce
3/4 cup beef or vegetable broth
1/2 ounce unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoon honey
Instructions
1. Heat oil in a large skillet.
2. Mix in onion, garlic and salt; stir for 2 minutes.
3. Then mix in the tomatoes, ancho pepper, pasilla pepper and cayenne pepper.
4. Simmer  for about 2 minutes.
5. Pour ingredients in a blender or food processor.
6. Mix until smooth.
7. Pour ingredients from blender to skillet; stir in enchilada sauce, broth, chocolate and honey.
8. Simmer until sauce thickens (20 minutes).
9. Add salt to taste.
10. Take off from heat and allow to cool.
Sauce can be stored in a freezer bag or air tight container. Makes about 5 cups. Use for enchiladas, Spanish rice or any other Mexican dish.

Semi-Homemade BBQ Sauce

Ingredients
1 18 oz. bottle BBQ sauce – favorite brand or type
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Instructions
1. Over medium heat, melt butter
2. Stir in remaining ingredients
3. For 10-20 minutes, simmer on low heat, stirring occasionally. It becomes thicker in consistency and develops a deeper taste the longer you simmer it. Store in refrigerator up to 2 weeks. Recipe can be found here.

Comeback Sauce

Ingredients
1 cup Duke’s mayonnaise or our favorite brand
1/4 cup Heinz ketchup
1/4 cup chili sauce (DO NOT substitute Thai Chili Sauce)
1 heaping teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
1/4 cup light olive oil
Juice of one lemon
Instructions
Stir together all ingredients and keep overnight in refrigerator. Use for a dip for veggies and chips, a dressing for salads, spread for sandwiches, or a sauce for seafood or chicken. Recipe can be found at this website.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Download this free mini-guide, Make the Switch From Store-Bought to Homemade, from The Survival Mom, for more recipes from scratch!

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Can You Handle Living Off The Grid? Part 2

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March 7th, 2016

Video courtesy of SeekerStories

One family left everything they had behind to live without electricity, running water, or any means of communication in the backwoods of Eastern Idaho. After a series of hardships, Esther was ready to call it quits on the off-the-grid lifestyle. Now Nick and Esther discuss their new approach and what they learned. In Going Off Grid, Laura Ling examines how 180,000 Americans a year are choosing to live entirely disconnected from our modern internet-focused world in pursuit of a more sustainable, simple lifestyle.

Part 2 of 2

New Book Reveals the Little Known Secrets of How To Maintain An Extremely Low Profile In An Age Of Hackers, Snoops, Data Miners, Corrupt Bureaucrats and Surveillance Grid Profilers.

 

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Grow Your Own Off-Grid, Heal-Anything Herbal Medicine Chest

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Grow Your Own Off-Grid, Heal-Anything Herbal Medicine Chest

Chamomile. Image source: Pixabay.com

 

Long before penicillin and other antibiotics, herbal remedies were a standard prescription for a variety of ailments. Here, I’m going to discuss some of the most well-known herbal medicines and highlight the ones you can grow in your own backyard or as potted plants in your home. I’ll also cover basic preparations, administrations and conditions.

The availability of herbs in your garden can vary depending on the seasons, but most can be grown as potted plants on a kitchen windowsill or anywhere in the house where you have regular sunshine. You also can dry herbs or preserve them, but make sure you refrigerate or process any herb that you store as a paste or solution for any period of time.

The herbs we have listed here are in no particular order related to effectiveness. (It’s not like there’s one “super herb” that works for everything.) Their effectiveness varies. Some offer immediate relief, while others need to be taken regularly over a period of time to present results.

You should always check with your doctor before using herbal remedies, especially if you are taking prescription medications. Some herbs diminish or contradict the effectiveness of some pharmaceuticals.

Beet Powder: The Ancient Secret To Renewed Energy And Stamina

Here’s what you should have in your herbal medicine chest:

1. Garlic

Grow Your Own Off-Grid, Heal-Anything Herbal Medicine Chest

Image source: Pixabay.com

Garlic is a natural blood thinner and stimulates circulation. It has been shown to reduce blood pressure when used regularly, and has both antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. It can be eaten as an ingredient in a meal, chewed raw if you can stand it, or roasted and spread on bread like butter. It’s a perennial plant, and the bulbs can be easily divided and replanted to deliver a steady supply. It also grows easily as a houseplant and the flowers are actually quite sweet smelling.

2. Peppermint

Peppermint is used as a remedy for sore throat and congestion when taken as a tea (you can steep both fresh and dried leaves in hot water). It also can relieve canker sores as a tea or a gargle. When pulverized and spread on the skin, it can soothe muscle aches. It also relieves indigestion and cramping. It’s a perennial but be careful; it truly spreads like a weed. If you don’t have a large and distant patch of property for a peppermint patch, it’s best raised as a potted plant, even outdoors. If it flowers, trim the blooms or the leaves will become bitter.

3. Calendula

Calendula is sometimes referred to as a pot marigold. Historically, it has been used as an antiseptic and anti-fungal treatment both internally and especially externally as a wound-healing and skin-soothing agent. When made into a paste, it was often used as a diaper cream and remedy for other skin irritations. It’s a self-seeding annual that grows well as a potted plant indoors. The yellow/orange petals are the primary source of healing agents.

4. Lemon Balm

A member of the mint family, lemon balm is known for its antispasmodic effects on the stomach, as a remedy for irritable bowel syndrome, and for its relaxing effects on the nervous system. It’s also a topical skin reliever and in one study done by the NYU Medical Center, it was found to relieve and diminish the effects of herpes simplex. It makes an excellent tea – served hot or cold – when steeped in hot water. It’s a perennial but does not spread like its mint cousins and can easily be grown as a potted plant.

5. Rosemary

A member of the pine family, rosemary has long been used as both a culinary and medicinal herb. Its primary benefit, according to the Georgetown University Medical Center, is its stimulant properties related to circulation and oxygenation to the brain. Some people see this as an alternative to the stimulant properties of coffee. It’s a perennial in southern climates but must be potted and taken indoors in northern latitudes in North America.  Keep it well-watered and replant outdoors in late spring.

6. Mullein

Grow Your Own Off-Grid, Heal-Anything Herbal Medicine Chest

Image source: Pixabay.com

Mullein is an ancient herb used by the Romans for coughs and colds. It is usually taken as an infusion or tea from the steeped flowers. Some pharmaceutical companies also add a mullein extract to their cough formulas. It is a perennial plant and often grows wild. It’s easy to spot in a meadow or field because its stalk stands six feet tall above the grass and weeds. The tall stalk and flowers are the parts of the plant you harvest.

7. Chamomile

There are a lot of opinions about natural sedatives and natural anti-depressants like St. John’s Wort. One that is often underappreciated is chamomile. The National Institute of Health reports that chamomile is one of the best herbs for treating colic, nervous stress, infections and stomach disorders in children. It’s an annual plant but reseeds prolifically. The small flowers are the prime ingredient often infused in a tea.

There are many other herbal remedies, from gingko to ginseng. All can be grown in your yard and garden. The key is to know you have options.

What would you add to this list? Share your advice in the section below:

Harness The Power Of Nature’s Most Remarkable Healer: Vinegar

How To Create A Simple Garden For Salsa, Sauces, Soups and Salads!

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Nothing compares to the taste of freshly made salsa, pasta sauce, soup or a beautiful salad from your very own garden! With nothing more than a tiny plot of backyard space or a sunny patio – you can easily create and

The post How To Create A Simple Garden For Salsa, Sauces, Soups and Salads! appeared first on Old World Garden Farms.

Planting a Lavender Hedge

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How to plant a lavender hedge for a beautiful garden windbreak | PreparednessMama

Make a beautiful windbreak for your garden There are few herbs that bring as much delight as lavender. Its sweet smell and beautiful color brighten any home garden. Scent and color aside, lavender is a hard worker too, providing flowers for cooking, crafting, and herbal preparations.  Lavender also mounds nicely into hedges to enhance your […]

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Plants vs. Pests!

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Plants vs. Pests
Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live

Plants vs. PestsLearn how to use plants to repel venomous and disease-bearing pests, such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas and spiders. These creepy-crawly, biting bugs, can mean anything from a minor itch to death. And while there are a number of natural remedies for many kinds of bug bites, it would be even better not to get bit in the first place.

2-28-16 51In order to avoid getting bitten by one of these pests, most people reach for the common, toxic bug repellents, such as DEET. DEET is known for its effectiveness. The only problem is that DEET can lead to health problems. This might be a mild skin irritation. But for children, DEET can spell more serious, neurological risks. DEET must be diluted for use with adults, and even more so with children. Plus, it is not to be used at all by infants under 2 months old.

2-28-16 Cat_flea_full_of_human_bloodWhere does this leave us when we are faced with the risks of mosquito-borne illnesses like the Zika virus? What about West Nile Virus, Eastern or Western Equine Encephalitis, or dengue? And what about the diseases carried by ticks and fleas. That covers everything from Lyme to plague. And let’s not forget about spiders, many of which seek shelter in firewood piles, and are attracted to the heat of a warm cabin during cold spring nights.

Do we just douse ourselves and our homes with questionable chemicals? Sometimes, DEET and such products are absolutely appropriate. They are certainly effective. But, what if we are in a TEOTWAWKI situation and supplies run out?

Join me to learn all about plants and essential oils shown to repel common pests that can make you sick. Some can be just as effective or even more effective than DEET as repelling pests. Plus, non-chemical ideas for pest control for infants who shouldn’t be exposed to any of these options.
Herbal Prepper Website: http://www.herbalprepper.com/
Join us for Herbal Prepper Live “LIVE SHOW” every Sunday 7:00/Et 6:00Ct 4:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat

Listen to this broadcast or download “Plants vs. Pests” in player below!

Get the 24/7 app for your smart phone HERE! 
Put the 24/7 player on your web site HERE! 
Archived shows of Herbal Prepper Live at bottom of THIS PAGE!

The post Plants vs. Pests! appeared first on The Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Antibiotic Alternatives

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Several people have asked me questions about antibiotics like:  How can I get prescription-quality antibiotics for my emergency kit? Are animal antibiotics safe for human consumption? And then there is my question, how can I get antibiotics cheaper? At the beginning of the yearRead More

The post Antibiotic Alternatives appeared first on Preppers Survive.

Medicinal herbs, the ones to grow!

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Medicinal herbs, the ones to grow!
Cat Ellis “Herbal Prepper Live

I’ve been reading a number of blog postsMedicinal herbs Prepper's Natural Medicine lately, each listing what herbs are most important for preppers to grow in a medicinal herb garden. This is my chance to weigh in, because I think most of them have got it all wrong. Sure garlic and chamomile and thyme are wonderful, but there’s more- so much more than can and should be done.

11-8-15 Solomon's_SealAnd here is just one of many reasons why: the primaries in South Carolina and Nevada may have given us a glimpse of who will be the next President of the United States. While things could still change, the front runners are Hillary and Trump. I just finished listening to Trump promise to repeal the ironically named “Affordable Care Act”, aka ObamaCare, if he’s elected President. The Hildebeast pushed single-payer when she was the First Lady, and wants to build onto ObamaCare if elected President.

Either way, access to the medical system and how medical bills get paid, are likely to change in the next couple of years.

Whether this change will be good or not, remains to be seen. Will we still have access to only one option- sick care from our medical system? Sick care has a place. People get sick. But, the goal should be to improve and get off the maintenance medicines, something rarely seen, and not to just maintain a state of unwellness. Plus, it will still probably be expensive.

I cannot stress enough the necessity to grow your own herbs, learn to identify the medicinal plants in your area, and make your own herbal remedies. If you truly want affordable health care, this is where you start. Herbal medicine is your medicine. You have a right to grow your own herbs and make your own herbal preparations.

In this episode, I cover some of the herbs that I think are “must grow” herbs. Some of these will be antibiotic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, decongestant, analgesic, and some will repel disease or venom-carrying pests.
Herbal Prepper Website: http://www.herbalprepper.com/
Join us for Herbal Prepper Live “LIVE SHOW” every Sunday 7:00/Et 6:00Ct 4:00/Pt Go To Listen and Chat

Listen to this broadcast or download “Medicinal herbs, the ones to grow” in player below!

Get the 24/7 app for your smart phone HERE! 
Put the 24/7 player on your web site HERE! 
Archived shows of Herbal Prepper Live at bottom of THIS PAGE!

The post Medicinal herbs, the ones to grow! appeared first on The Prepper Broadcasting Network.

Top 5 Tips For High-Yield Container Gardening

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February 8th, 2016

Video courtesy of GrowYourGreens

John from GrowingYourGreens shares with you his top 5 container gardening tips that will enable you to be successful at growing food in a container garden whether you are a beginner or someone who has more experience. John shares with you his small container garden, and his most important tips that has enabled him to be successful growing a vegetable garden in half wine / oak barrels.

New Book Reveals the Little Known Secrets of How To Maintain An Extremely Low Profile In An Age Of Hackers, Snoops, Data Miners, Corrupt Bureaucrats and Surveillance Grid Profilers.

 

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‘Kitchen Cures’ For The Common Cold

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‘Kitchen Cures’ For The Common Cold

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If you get a cold this winter, help is just a few steps away, right in your kitchen. While I can’t promise that these remedies will heal you overnight, they will definitely make you feel better and may reduce the degree and length of time that you suffer.

Make a Steam Tent or Take a Bath

One of my favorite home treatments for a cold is an herbal steam. Simply take a couple of spoonfuls of dried herbs and toss them in a large heatproof bowl. Cover the herbs with boiling water. Sit in front of the bowl. Cover your head and the bowl with a towel. Inhale the head-clearing moisture and herbal medicine.

You can use this technique for children, but ensure that the water is quite a bit cooler. Make a game out of it. With very young children, you may need to go into the “tent,” too.

Ordinary cooking herbs contain powerful properties which inhibit viruses and bacteria. Oregano, rosemary and marjoram possess some of the most active antimicrobial actions. Sage is very soothing if you also suffer from a sore throat. For herbal steams, inexpensive bulk-size containers of herbs are just fine. Don’t use kitchen spices such as ginger or cinnamon for steams, as they are too stimulating and can be irritating. Add a bit of citrus peel to your steams, too.

Just 30 Grams Of This Survival Superfood Provides More Nutrition Than An Entire Meal!

Use the same herbs for herbal baths. Children benefit from the use of catnip, dill, mint and fennel. They are soothing and gentle. The catnip and mint help relieve fevers if used in a tepid bath.

Enjoy Hot Brothy Soups

Mom was right when she fed you chicken soup when you were sick. Soups are terrific medicine for colds. While chicken soup is fine, any brothy soup is beneficial. Soups are easy to digest, so they conserve what energy you have for healing. If you suffer from chills, a cup of hot soup may be just what you need to warm from the inside. While most children and many adults prefer mild-tasting soups, I recommend spicy types for maximum benefit. They warm you up better.

Use plenty of the germ-fighting herbs mentioned above in your soups. Other herbs and spices which are particularly beneficial include cayenne, turmeric, ginger and black pepper. The hot-flavored herbs improve your circulation, including that of germ-fighting lymphatic fluid. They also help to relieve the aches and pains that may occur when you have a cold.  Hot soups get everything flowing. Your nose may run more while you are eating your soup. That is healthy. It gets the offending virus or germs out of your tissues.

Include mushrooms, particularly shitakes, in your soup. They are powerful immune-boosting aids. Include plenty of colorful, fresh vegetables, which are packed with vitamin C and other antioxidants which promote healing. Be sure to toss in lots of garlic and onions.

Make Some Cough Medicine

‘Kitchen Cures’ For The Common Cold

Image source: Pixabay.com

Very effective cough medicine can be made by heating up some honey. Pour the heated honey over some kitchen herbs in a heatproof container. Use at least one teaspoonful of dried herbs, or one tablespoonful of fresh herbs, for each cupful of honey. Place a lid over the container. After 20 minutes, strain out the herbs. Use up to one tablespoonful of syrup every four hours. Any of the aforementioned herbs work well. Try thyme, lemon and fresh garlic for a potent antiviral blend. It will soothe irritated throats and reduce coughs.

If your throat is particularly sore, use sage and a pinch of cayenne. While it might seem odd to add such a potent herb to a syrup which is formulated to ease a sore throat, cayenne possesses numbing properties once the heat wears off.

All of the children’s herbs mentioned above may be made into syrups for them. Make a delicious honey syrup with chamomile. It has antispasmodic actions which gently quiet children’s coughs. Plus, it tastes great. The amount to administer is based upon the size of your child. Do not administer honey to babies.

Juice Your Favorite Fruits and Vegetables

Dehydration makes mucus thicker, and may cause fevers to intensify. Stay hydrated with freshly made juices. Juices contain concentrated amounts of vitamins and minerals which your body needs to heal. They are particularly useful if you have little appetite. Like soups, drinking juices conserves your body’s energies so that it can fight off the cold more efficiently.

Smoothies made with a little yogurt are fine in moderation. While many dairy products shouldn’t be consumed when you have a cold because they may increase thick mucus production, a little bit of Greek yogurt added to a smoothie provides protein. Yogurt sooths inflamed tissues of the throat and gastrointestinal tract as well.

There is no guaranteed cure for the common cold, but kitchen remedies are tools which promote healing, provide your body with the nutrients needed for healing, keep you hydrated, and help to relieve symptoms.

What kitchen foods or advice would you add to this story? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Discover The Trick To Saving Thousands At The Grocery Store. Read More Here.