Herbal medicine is the most ancient form of healthcare in the world. It often takes the form of some harvested loveliness from the garden or strong-smelling tonic combining various food types. But did you know that up to a quarter of all modern prescription drugs are derived from plants?
Modern plant derived drugs like Aspirin have been used for centuries. Aspirin uses salicyclic acid, which is found in jasmine, beans, peas and clover. Who would’ve thought it was derived naturally?
However, natural derivatives in modern medicine are only part of the herb story. Herbal treatments are centuries old. They remain popular as they take the outlook that the individual is healed by stimulating the body’s natural healing powers. They are also readily available in your garden or kitchen.
Common herb examples include chamomile, garlic, ginger, aloe vera, sage, lavender and lemon balm. These very common herbs can help with anything from gastrointestinal complaints to respiratory problems, skin irritations and sunburn. More information on the healing properties of different herbs is available online. Try Healthline.com and Wellbeing.com.au
While herbs are generally safe and well tolerated, its important to do your research and consider how they may combine with prescription drugs. Consulting your doctor is recommended.
The healing properties of herbs can be used in a variety of ways:
- Compress: mostly used for skin complaints and involving cloth and water
- Decoction: herbs simmered or boiled in water
- Extract: dried or powdered herbs
- Infusion: teas using herbs
- Healing oil: herbs infused in hot or cold oils
- Tincture: herbs soaked in alcohol or water and applied to infected wound or skin
- Ointment/cream: combination of herbs, oils, fats and water
- Poultice: mixture of fresh, dried or powdered herbs
To get started try this Calendular Salve for a delightful herbal skin treatment. It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that make it useful in healing wounds, soothing eczema and relieving nappy rash. It may also be used as an antiseptic. Read on to start creating your home apothecary now.
Get herbed up with these eBooks:
- Grow your own herbal remedies: How to create a customized herb garden to support your health and well-being by Maria Groves
- Homegrown herbs: A complete guide to growing, using and enjoying more than 100 herbs by Rosemary Gladstar
- The garden apothecary: the happy gut by Reece Carter
- The kitchen herb garden: Growing and preparing essential herbs by Rosalind Creasy
Borrow up to 30 eBooks on your device. To get started download the ePlatform by Wheelers and Libby apps. Select Sunshine Coast Libraries and enter your member number and password. Need help setting up your device for eBooks? Watch this video tutorial.
Libraries love these natural healing eAudiobooks:
- Yang Sheng by Katie Brindle
- Gut well soon: a practical guide to a healthier body and a happier mind by Catherine Rogers
- Sleep by Lisa Varadi
Borrow up to 30 eBooks on your device. To get started, download the BorrowBox and Libby apps, select Sunshine Coast Libraries and enter your member number and password. Need help setting up your device for eAudiobooks? Watch this video tutorial.
Try these herb healthy eMagazines:
- ABC Organic Gardener
- The Art of Healing
- Natural Health
- Earth Garden
Get started using free eMagazines online or download the Libby app. Select Sunshine Coast Libraries and enter your member number and password.
Listen on the go with these podcasts:
Subscribe to podcasts on Apple, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts.
On the web
- Using herbs safely with Queensland Government Health Advice.
- Herbal homemade recipes with Learning Herbs.
- Boost your Juice with Herbs.
- Make your own Herbal Remedy Teas with No Fuss Natural recipes.
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