Easy Herbal Remedies

Herbal Journal

September 7th, I am a casualty of the war on opioids.

According to the powers that be, the opioid pain medication shouldn’t be prescribed for cases like mine. They, of course, don’t talk to the patients, they only make up these ‘guidelines’ (read: rules) and expect that everyone will fit into those tiny little boxes.  So, my pain doctors have reduced my opioid pain medication and will not prescribe more (suggested that if I want more I should doctor shop for a clinic that still prescribes opiate pain meds).

Unfortunately, I don’t fit into those boxes. It’s important with people who have multiple conditions, to not rock the boat so to speak. I have Meniere’s disease (incurable), migraine with aura (incurable), chronic pain (not cured so far), hypothyroidism (on medication), and polycystic kidney disease (incurable). All these conditions – especially Meniere’s disease, I have to be careful to not take or eat anything that triggers a flare. The medications specifically for nerve pain that I tried last year put me into a tailspin and confined me to bed for a very long time. Yet these are the medication that have been ordered for me – or I will not be treated.

I didn’t choose to be a statistic. No one does. But I also didn’t choose to have a government agency (state or federal it doesn’t matter) tell my pain doctor how to treat me.  I’m tired of being likened to a criminal or an addict just because I’m a chronic pain patient. So, I am experimenting with different tea blends to bring about pain relief. So far, my results have been moderately successful. Now, if I had been searching for a nice ‘go to sleep’ tea, I’d have found that several times over!

I’m trying:

Chamomile – in all the blends I’m using dried organic chamomile. Not only is it wonderfully relaxing, but it is also a great anti-inflammatory.

Wild Lettuce – organic wild lettuce has natural opiate “like” properties, without containing opiates. Which I really like because my ultimate goal was to be off pain medication anyway. However, it does have sedative properties that make it not really ideal for daytime use. But it puts me into a good restful sleep.

California Poppy – organic California poppy, the California State Flower, is a cousin to the opiate containing poppy but does not contain opiates. California poppy is analgesic, antispasmodic and can provide relief of nerve pain – which is what I have. So far, other than making me very sleepy, it does help with moderate pain relief.

Rose Hips – Surprisingly, rose hips – which I already loved due to their blast of vitamin C and immunity-boosting powers – also helps relieve pain. I have been happily adding them to each version of the teas I make.

Valerian – although Michael hates the smell and generally walks right back out the door as soon as he smells it, Valerian is good for pain and is better known for its sedative properties. Although it doesn’t taste that good to me so I’ll probably add it to capsules instead of tea.

Lavender – Another surprise, lavender is a really good pain reliever because of its calming effects on the nervous system. (and it tastes good).

Rosemary – Which is a good anti-inflammatory.

I’m busy developing teas using these herbs and many more at this time to find an effective blend to relieve pain. But ultimately, I want this to be as convenient to me as taking the prescriptions are, so I also want to create capsules.  I’m also very aware that this might be an ongoing odyssey to find the right fit. Bodies change and needs change, maybe I’ll have to have a daytime version and a nighttime version – that seems realistic.

Today’s not a good day pain wise. I woke up with some pain, then got up and took a shower and by the time I was out the pain was excruciating – and because showers always destroy my equilibrium so it’s generally bathing for me – I’m also dizzy. But in the morning, when I need to get upstairs to work, feed the puppies and take them out, there’s not enough time for a bath.

The Mankoski Pain Scale

I found a pain scale that really is the best one I’ve seen, and believe me, I’ve seen tons of them over the last few years. Today, I’m in bed, trying to work through the pain.

Today, I’m a 7.

(This post first appeared on my personal blog at www.tobenamedlater.com)

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The medications I was on made it imperative that I not be left alone. But this is what I’ll be forced to go back to now that the government has stepped in and told my doctor how to treat me. It’s not fair, and I’m really angry about it. But, there is only one thing I can do, and that is to stop taking the medications. I shouldn’t be forced to, but I’m very tired of being pigeon-holed into the drug addict category and having to justify why I should be on them.

I’m an herbalist!  I can and WILL find an alternative that is better for me and has no harsh side effects. I’ve already started researching and experimenting.

And please, before you start talking to me about using marijuana, just don’t. I don’t want to be rude, but, I’m not about to start using something the federal government considers illegal. I’m not about to lose my 2nd Amendment Rights just for using an illegal substance. It’s a whole argument I’m not going into here, just understand that it’s my choice and this is how I feel.  I am currently looking at the CBD oils and salves though.

The first round of testing is underway and showing promising results! Already, after a cup of tea, my pain level is drastically reduced. So, I’m really hoping I’ll be able to find effective pain relief and kiss prescription pain meds goodbye.

(This post first appeared on my personal blog at www.tobenamedlater.com)

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Everyone knows that essential oils are the next new ‘big thing’ for all-natural healing.  It’s true that essential oils can improve your health, help your skin, and improve your mood. But with all the different essential oil companies, do we as consumers know the best companies to buy from? The number of companies and brands is staggering. I work with a select few:

Mountain Rose Herbs: excellent company, extremely dedicated to providing the best information possible, and affordable. And they have a huge selection.

NYR Organic offers some very good oils and blends, as well as wonderful skincare products.

Penn Herb Co. is a wonderful company with a long history of providing quality and good prices. My go-to for bulk herbs.

In addition to these three, there are hundreds more, and I’m not going to list them here. There are numerous “Best” lists but please do your own research, and pay particular attention to whether the companies have paid to be on the list. For example, I have seen a number of such lists with Young Living Oils listed as their number one pick. Personally, I will not order Young Living Oils, for one thing, they are extremely expensive, have been sanctioned several times by the Food and Drug Administration in the US, and do not cure all the diseases they claim. Be very wary and do your own research.

For the record, essential oils are not cure-alls, they do not heal cancer, cure diabetes or blindness and so on. Any company that claims their essential oils CURE or somehow reverses conditions isn’t telling you the truth.  Always, ALWAYS dilute oils before using them on skin. If you do take them internally do so ONLY with a qualified practitioner.

Here’s an interesting site about Young Living and Doterra, as being the biggest frauds in the EO game. While I don’t agree with everything on the site, it’s still very informative about what each of the companies has been cited for previously and the sheer lack of research each company has to back up their claims. This is a big buyer beware!  At any rate, the site is below, enjoy! (This post first appeared on my company’s blog at www.hilltopgrp.net)

https://www.sequenceinc.com/fraudfiles/2015/03/essential-oils-scam-not-a-medical-treatment/
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Digestion Dressing

I’m a huge fan of home remedies! I know whenever I’m sick I’m putting together chicken soup with all the goodies. Turns out there is science to back up that one! My salves and balms are based on home remedies that really work.  I make zesty vinegar (recipe below), bitters, cordials, all for digestion, as well as spice blends that fulfill a specific need at the time. Yes, your home cooking can also be your home remedy.

Kathy’s Zesty Vinegar

I also like to call this my “Digestion Dressing” as it’s ingredients are so wonderful in aiding digestion. Onions are great internally and externally, internally they can help to increase circulation, and externally, either raw or bruised and in a poultice can help sprains and bruises, and inhale the aroma of a fresh cut slice of onion to clear the sinuses (now we know why we always cry when cutting Onions!).

Rosemary aides the digestion in calming stomach cramps, and improving circulation – externally it can help prevent dandruff when used as a hair rinse. (Because there is some speculation that rosemary in large enough doses can help to bring on a late menstrual period, pregnant women should use caution and common sense before taking it).

Dill is a great remedy for constipation, Thyme and orange are also beneficial in helping the digestion. If your digestion seems to be sluggish, add some of this vinegar to your salad for relief!

1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dill seed dried
1/2 teaspoon peppercorns
1 tablespoon dried thyme leaves, crushed
1/2 teaspoon dried minced onion
1 teaspoon dried orange peel
apple cider vinegar

1. Crush everything and place into a pint size jar.

2. Top with Apple Cider Vinegar.

3. Check frequently, top as necessary, but let set for one month.

4. Straining the herbs is not necessary after the month since they are all dried. If preferred, strain and decant to a bottle with cork top. (Vinegar will destroy metal).

Tips
Any combination of herbs can be used. I’ve found it helpful that when using dried herbs, don’t mix fresh herbs into the vinegar. Either all dried or all fresh.

For Constipation: simmer 1 teaspoon bruised dill seed in 1 cup boiling water for 10 minutes. Let cool to lukewarm then drink.

Enjoy! This post first appeared on my company blog at www.hilltopgrp.net)

P.S. Read below for an excellent article about great home remedies!

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