Easy Herbal Remedies

Kathy McCabe

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Being a Meniere’s disease patient, these tips are very welcome. Read on for more information:

Vertigo can be a life-changing condition. Many people experience vertigo occasionally but if you suffer from chronic vertigo you never know when the world around you will suddenly begin to spin. Dizziness isn’t the only symptom that vertigo sufferers experience. Vertigo can also be associated with headaches, nausea, and anxiety.

Because vertigo can strike at any moment you should avoid dangerous activities like driving a car until the condition is under control. While there are many causes of vertigo, one of the most common is BPPV or benign positional paroxysmal vertigo. BPPV is caused by a displacement of calcium crystals, called canaliths, in the ear canal. When these crystals are displaced they affect your sense of balance causing you to experience vertigo.

Migraines and other inner ear problems like infections can also cause vertigo. If you experience vertigo don’t despair. There are many natural remedies that can help you overcome this condition.

1. Ginkgo Biloba

5 Natural Remedies to Treat Vertigo - Gingko Biloba TreeStudies have shown that Ginkgo Biloba is effective at treating vertigo. Ginkgo is associated with Chinese medicine but the tree can be found growing throughout the United States. A large tree that can grow to over one hundred feet tall it grows well in direct sun. It is a common ornamental tree in cities as it thrives in disturbed land. The leaves have a distinctive fan shape and change to a beautiful yellow in fall.

You can harvest the Ginkgo leaves when they turn yellow in the fall to make a tincture to treat your vertigo or purchase Ginkgo in capsules. You can make a tincture easily in your own home with materials you likely have already.

Ginkgo Biloba Tincture

  • 3-4 ounces of ginkgo leaves (you can use dried leaves as well)
  • Vodka (or other alcohol at least 80 proof)
  • Mason jar
  • Coffee filter
  • Funnel
  • Tinted bottles for storage

Related: How Long Do Dried Herbs, Ointments, Syrups and Tinctures Last?

Steps:

  1. 5 Natural Remedies to Treat Vertigo - Gingko Biloba TinctureFirst, crush the leaves to increase the surface area
  2. Place the crushed leaves in the mason jar
  3. Cover the leaves with vodka to a minimum of two fingers above the top of the roots. If you are using dry leaves add more vodka as the material will absorb the liquid. Do not exceed double the height of leaves or your tincture will not be as strong.
  4. Seal the jar and leave in a cool dark place for at least two weeks
  5. When your tincture is ready place a coffee filter inside a funnel and strain the liquid into a tinted bottle for storage.
  6. Store in a cool dark place

Use a little as a few drops to start and no more than a teaspoon daily.

2. Blessed Thistle

5 Natural Remedies to Treat Vertigo - Blessed ThistleBlessed thistle, Cnicus benedictus, is a plant native to the Mediterranean region that is now commonly found growing in North America. A member of the thistle family, it can grow to two feet tall and produces yellow flowers surrounded by small spines. It has been used in traditional remedies since the middle ages to treat vertigo and other conditions.

The flowers, leaves, and stems can be harvested from June until August and used to make either a tea or a tincture. To make a tincture follow the recipe for the Ginkgo Biloba but replace the Ginkgo leaves with leaves, flowers, and stems from the blessed thistle. Use just a few drops to start and don’t exceed a teaspoon daily.

3. Ginger

Ginger is one of those plants that have many uses medicinal and culinary. There is evidence that shows ginger is an effective treatment for vertigo and accompanying nausea.

Ginger is excellent when it comes to increasing the circulation of your blood. If you are feeling dizzy, chew on a little fresh ginger or drink ginger tea several times a day.

You can use ginger to make a spicy tea that will help alleviate your vertigo. Use either fresh or dry ginger rhizomes to make tea.

Ginger Tea

  1. 5 Natural Remedies to Treat Vertigo - Ginger Teaslice the ginger finely
  2. place 1-2 tablespoons of sliced ginger in a cup
  3. Pour 8 ounce of boiling water over the sliced ginger
  4. Let steep for 5-10 minutes depending on how strong you prefer
  5. Strain

You can sweeten the tea with honey to taste.

4. Lemon Balm

Lemon balm is believed to have healing properties that help with nervousness and vertigo. This is, in part, attributed to the health effects of the balm on the circulatory and nervous systems. The latter is important because vertigo results from the constant sending of nervous signals from the ear.

Considered one of the fastest home remedies, lemon balm is effective in treating vertigo, migraines, insomnia, nervous tension, and even depression.

You can rub its leaf and take a whiff to smell the cozy subtle lemon aroma of its leaves. Lemon balm oil helps you stay calm and relaxed because it reduces stress.

Drinking the strained tea of dried lemon balm seeped in a cup of boiling water can be an almost immediate relief for vertigo attacks.

Lemon Balm Tea

  1. 5 Natural Remedies to Treat Vertigo - Lemon Balm TeaPlace the cup of water in a pan and boil.
  2. Add the lemon balm to the hot water and lower the heat to let it simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Pass the tea through a strainer and drink daily to help alleviate the symptoms of vertigo.

You may also inhale the balm as it simmers.

Do this for about 5 minutes to allow you to regain some balance and reduce the ‘off-balance’ feeling.

5. Exercise

Exercise is a common way to treat vertigo and is particularly effective in treating BPPV. While there are several different exercise regimes to choose from the most common is the Epley maneuver. A series of movements designed by Dr. Epley, this maneuver is designed to return the displaced calcium crystals to where they belong. This will then relieve the feelings of dizziness and loss of balance.

To perform the Epley maneuver simply follow these steps:

For the right ear

  • 5 Natural Remedies to Treat Vertigo - Epley ManeuverBegin by sitting on a bed
  • Turn your head 45 degrees to the right
  • Lie back onto a pillow, keeping your head turned to the right
  • With your head reclined on the pillow, stay in position for 30 seconds
  • Next without raising your head, turn 90 degrees to the left so you end with your head positioned 45 degrees to the left
  • Stay in the position for 30 seconds
  • Now turn your head and body another 90 degrees to the left so you are facing into the bed
  • Stay in the position for 30 seconds
  • Sit up on the left side

Do the same for the left ear.

After completing the Epley Maneuver you may experience immediate relief. However, you may find you need to repeat the maneuver a few times to get the crystals to return where they belong. Once your vertigo has subsided you can stop the exercises.

Get Plenty Of Sleep And Stay Hydrated

All of us suffer from bouts of insomnia from one time or another. As a vertigo sufferer, insomnia can exacerbate your symptoms. The longer you go without sleep the more likely you are to find yourself facing the consequences and experiencing dizziness and loss of balance.

Having a regular sleep routine can help ensure that you get enough sleep each night. Also, avoid caffeine and alcohol which can disturb your sleep patterns.

Dehydration can be another factor in triggering vertigo. While staying hydrated is always important it is even more important if you suffer from vertigo. You may have heard to drink 64 ounces of water per day but current standards now recommend that you drink between half an ounce to an ounce of water for every pound you weigh. To stay hydrated in hot weather you should make sure you are consuming on the higher-end of these guidelines. By keeping yourself hydrated you can eliminate one of the factors that can trigger bouts of vertigo.

While vertigo can be life-altering, with these simple home remedies you can begin to regain control of your life. Taking simple steps like staying hydrated and getting plenty of sleep can make a real difference. And when you are faced with an attack of vertigo, knowing exercises and herbal remedies can help you regain your equilibrium. (By

Source: 5 Natural Remedies for Treating Vertigo

I have always felt the pain caused by weather changes. I knew I wasn’t the only one and this is an excellent article on some things you can do to alieve it.

~*~

Weather changes do not only affect our environment, but also our personal well-being as well. When weather change occurs, it affects the air that we breathe which, in turn, affects our overall health. It affects our entire system from our immune system to our musculoskeletal system. Hence, there are some people who experience pain whenever they experience changes in climate.

As a matter of fact, weather change and joint pain are relatively linked. Joint pains may be caused by weather changes through a clear connection that hasn’t been determined yet. Some people may often feel more joint pain when the weather is cold or humid. They may also feel the pain whenever it is raining. Other people experiencing pain brought about by other conditions like migraine and fibromyalgia may also experience weather-affected pain.

What Is Barometric Pressure?

Barometric pressure is the pressure in the earth’s atmosphere. While it is mainly environmental in nature, this pressure has a tremendous effect on our body as evidenced by the pain we have to deal with whenever this atmospheric pressure changes. The change can affect the expansion and contraction of our body’s bones, joints, and muscles. It also affects our sinuses as it fills up with air.

These effects can lead to the development of pain such as arthritis, headaches, and migraines, among many others. Unfortunately, we cannot control weather changes. But it doesn’t mean that we have to live up to the pain it causes. Thankfully, there are different ways that you can do to alleviate the pain brought about by the shifting weather.

How To Reduce Pain Triggered By Weather Changes?

These are the different things you can do at home to help reduce pain triggered by weather changes.

1. Increase Your Vitamins A, D, E, And K Intake

How to Reduce Pain Triggered by Weather Changes 1

Vitamins are essential to keep your body healthy. These vitamins help boost your immune system and will also ease inflammation brought about by pain. Though a diet change will not abruptly reduce pain, you will benefit from it in the long run.

Hence, you should consume foods like fish and nuts. Vegetables such as celery, broccoli, and spinach are also highly recommended. When it comes to fruits, get yourself some avocado, watermelon, and nectarines. Moreover, use healthy oils for salad dressings such as coconut or olive oils.

2. Eucalyptus Oil

How to Reduce Pain Triggered by Weather Changes 2Eucalyptus is a potent remedy for pain due to its anti-inflammatory compounds. It contains cineole and limonene that can help relieve the pain you are feeling. Specifically, eucalyptus is a good way to help ease joint pains. Rubbing eucalyptus oil on the affected joint promotes pain reduction as well as relaxation to the entire body due to its aroma.

To make eucalyptus oil, I suggest the infusion method. Gather, wash, and dry ¼ cup eucalyptus leaves. Place the leaves inside a jar and add a thin layer of sea salt. Mash the eucalyptus leaves while inside the jar to squeeze out its oil.

Add 1 cup of carrier oil (olive, coconut, or almond oil) to the eucalyptus and salt mixture. Cover the jar with a lid and place it under direct sunlight for a minimum of 2 weeks. Shake the jar once or twice daily.

After 2 weeks, strain the leaves from the oil. Move the oil to another jar and label it accordingly. This oil is best stored in a refrigerator and can last for up to 6 months.

3. Ginger Tea

How to Reduce Pain Triggered by Weather Changes 3Studies show that ginger is beneficial for decreasing pain. It is an immune modulator, which reduces inflammation. It also aids in reducing the severity and length of migraine attacks. Moreover, having ginger in the form of tea is a pleasant way of keeping your body warm during rainy and cold days. Since ginger helps increase your body temperature, it will help promote proper blood circulation throughout your body.

To make a fresh ginger tea, thinly slice an inch of ginger into several smaller pieces. Place it in a saucepan with 1 cup of boiling water. Simmer to 5-10 minutes depending on how strong you want your tea to be. Strain the tea to remove traces of solid ginger. Before serving, you may add lemon or honey for added flavor.

Aside from helping ease weather-related pain, ginger tea will also help your digestion, reduce nausea, and soothe upset stomachs.

4. Aloe Vera

How to Reduce Pain Triggered by Weather Changes 4The use of aloe vera is very common among people who are suffering from pain. Aloe vera has healing properties that are not only good for joint pains but also heal skin abrasions and sunburns. Drinking the plant juice on a daily basis might also help lessen tension headaches as well as headaches caused by weather changes.

Making an aloe vera gel is easy. You only need 1 aloe leaf and a couple of kitchen tools. Cut off an outer leaf from the plant base. Wash the leaf and let it stand upright for 10-15 minutes to remove the resin that might cause skin irritation. Once the yellow-colored resin is completely drained, wash the leaf and peel the thick skin with a knife or peeler to expose the gel.

Scoop the aloe vera gel into a blender and blend gently until it becomes frothy and liquid. The gel is now ready to use for topical application on the affected painful area! To store, place the gel in an airtight container and store it in a refrigerator. This gel can last for about 1 week. You may also freeze aloe gel in a freezer, and it’ll last for up to 6 months.

5. Cayenne Peppers

How to Reduce Pain Triggered by Weather Changes 5Cayenne contains capsaicin. Capsaicin is an active compound that is helpful in relieving joint and nerve pain. It also helps clear out nasal and sinus passages. Hence, cayenne is a good home remedy to reduce pain triggered by weather changes.

You can simply add cayenne peppers to your diet if you can tolerate spicy foods. However, if you want to make a salve to rub on your joints, you can easily do it too.

To do this, melt 3 tablespoons of cayenne pepper, 2 tablespoons of beeswax, and 1 cup of neutral oil (almond oil, olive oil, or grapeseed oil) in a double boiler. Melt in slow and gentle heat. Once melted, transfer to a jar and wait for it to solidify. For a stronger salve, you can infuse cayenne with your base oil for 24-48 hours and proceed with the steps mentioned earlier. To use the salve, apply it directly to the painful area. Apply only the amount that you can tolerate or else it’ll be too hot on your skin and will cause a burning sensation.

Weather changes are unpredictable. Knowing how to treat pain brought about by weather change will help you deal with it better. You also need to remember to dress warmly during cold weather, especially now that winter season coming. Drinking enough water will also keep you well-hydrated, which is an important factor to avoid pain. These simple techniques – along with the right herbs – can ease your struggle and will allow you to resume some, if not most, of your daily activities despite the shift in weather.

Source: How to Reduce Pain Triggered by Weather Changes

White Snakeroot
White Snakeroot. Image by Daina Krumins from Pixabay

In my yard, a beautiful weed has popped up, White Snakeroot. It got abundant white flower clusters all over and looks just gorgeous! Curious, I began to research it to see if I should harvest.

White Snakeroot, of the Asteraceae family, is native to the Eastern and Central regions of North America. Its properties include: diaphoretic, diuretic, feberfuge, stimulent, tonic. Topically it was used by Native Americans as a remedy for snake bite (hence the name).

But what I also found out, this plant is responsible for the Milk Sickness that killed countless early settlers – perhaps including Abraham Lincoln’s mother! When the cows eat this, the tremetol contained in the plant gets into the milk and in high enough doses it’s toxic. It causes “staggers” in cows and can kill them too.

Apparently this is not as much as issue these days because of the volumes of milk, any tremetol in the milk is diluted to a safe level.

So, for my purposes this goes into my Not Usefull Weeds Category and I won’t harvest it. But I won’t stop looking at how gorgeous it is!

Grey Field Speedwell (Veronica polita)

This is an amazing little herb that is part of the plantain family. It can be used for rheumatism, coughs, and as an expectorant. Its good for skin conditions and can combine freely with plantain in wound/rash healing.  It is rich in vitamins, tannins and the glycoside aucubin which has anti-inflammatory, diuretic and liver protective actions.

Grey Field Speedwell is full of vitamins and tannins. The speedwell (Veronica) species are used as a diuretic, for wound healing, rheumatism, diaphoretic (sweat inducing), diuretic, antioxidant, antimicrobial.

Modern studies are delving into the vast properties of the over 200 species of the Veronica plants – particularly for more glycoside properties as well as antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, also for use in food preservation and pharmacological industries.

It has a somewhat sweet flavor and can be eaten raw, tossed in salads and cooked with other greens.

Harvest and dry for teas after the growing season or infuse in oil with plantain for a skin healing salve.

Use the young leaves and stems in salads or with other greens.

Feverfew (tanaceum parthenium)

Although there has been extensive research about the benefits of feverfew for migraines, I thought I’d share my own – real world – observations.

Feverfew (transplanted from Jale’s Garden) Photo by Kathy McCabe

Feverfew is a gorgeous little shrub that is closely related to chamomile and tansy. It can grow to about 3 feet in height and readily reseeds. It is a perennial and features a white daisy-like flower with what seems (to me) a popped-out sort of rounded button center.

Feverfew Flowers. Image by Katharina N. from Pixabay 

Nicolas Culpeper once touted feverfew as a women’s herb, saying that it is a great strengthener of the womb., Culpeper wrote The English Physitian – also known as Culpeper’s Complete Herbal – in 1652, and much more is known about this herb now.

Feverfew is mainly known for its headache reducing and migraine prevention properties. Taken daily it can lessen the frequency of migraines, as well as taken at the first sign of the migraine can help to stop it. For tension headaches I have found a tea/infusion made of feverfew with chamomile to be very useful. Tincture:10-15 drops daily for long-term prevention; Tincture: 5-10 drops with chamomile tincture (20 drops) is my go-to for headaches and for when a migraine hits. For an infusion: 1 part dried chamomile, ½ part dried feverfew, infuse (steep) with freshly boiled water, and cover the mug, for 10-15 minutes. Sweeten with honey, or sugar or stevia as desired. Drink up to three times daily for tension headaches.

An infusion of feverfew with willow bark may help reduce fevers and you can use feverfew in conjunction with St. Johns wort and comfrey in an infusion to help ease inflamed joints.

Creating a tincture using the folk method is extremely easy but I think the following article is highly beneficial. This is from The Herbal Academy: (https://theherbalacademy.com/how-to-make-a-tincture/)

Cautions: Avoid feverfew if you are taking blood thinners, or if you are pregnant. Use caution when eating fresh leaves as they have been known to cause mouth sores.

How to Make a Tincture

1. Remove the fresh or dried herbs off of the stalks. If using freshly dug roots, wash and scrub them of dirt.

2. Chop fresh herbs and grind dried herbs to increase the surface area for the maceration. Place herbs into a clean, dry jar with a wide mouth.

3. Pour high proof alcohol (vodka or brandy) over the herbs until the alcohol level is an inch above the top of the herbs. Dry herbs may absorb the liquid, so check and add alcohol as needed.

4. Cover tightly with a lid and place the jar in a dark cupboard and allow to soak or macerate for 4-6 weeks.

5. During this time period, give the jar a shake every 2-3 days. Keep an eye on the alcohol level to ensure all your herbs are still covered.

6. Once macerating is complete, layer cheesecloth a few times over top of a clean bowl and secure with rubber band if possible.

7. Strain the mixture through the cheesecloth and with clean hands, gather the cloth up and squeeze strongly so every bit of possible liquid is drained from the herbs.

8. Allow material to settle overnight and strain again, or decant, through a smaller filter such as filter paper or a thin wire screen.

9. Use a funnel to transfer into labeled, amber bottles and store out of the light.

An alcohol based tincture will last many years. Using a standard sized dropper bottle, adult dosages are typically 30 to 60 drops in a little water, taken three times a day. However, drop size can be variable depending on the viscosity of the preparation and the dropper size, so if you prefer more precision in your dosage you can consult a reputable publication like Medical Herbalism by David Hoffman.

Learning how to make a tincture is just one of the first things beginners learn in herbalism. If you are interested in studying herbalism, start your journey in the Online Introductory Herbal Course or the Online Intermediate Herbal Course. Learn more about herbs and how to use them as medicine and as food!

REFERENCES

Cech, Richo. (2000) Making Plant Medicine. Williams, OR: Horizon Herbs

Gladstar, Rosemary. (2012) Medicinal Herbs: A Beginners Guide. North Adams, MA: Storey Publishing.

Herbal Academy of New England. (2013) Herbal First Aid, Herbal Academy of New England’s Medicine Making Handbook

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