Yarrow

May 10, 2017

YARROW

(Achillea millefolium)

Yarrow is often used internally to treat excessive bleeding, indigestion, and diarrhoea amongst other ailments, and externally to help heal minor cuts and scrapes. Yarrow is also used in cosmetics to treat oily skin and as a cleanser. It is a flowering plant in the Asteraceae (aster, daisy, or sunflower) family and is native to temperate regions of Asia, Europe, and North America. Its name is derived from the Greek hero Achilles as he supposedly used it to heal soldier’s wounds during the Trojan War. It is also known as: blood wort, carpenter’s weed, knight’s milfoil, old man’s pepper, nosebleed, and staunch grass.  

HEALTH BENEFITS:

  • Reduces fevers by inducing sweating
  • Has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties
  • Aids with diarrhoea, indigestion, flatulence, and dyspepsia by getting the bile and pancreatic juices required for digestion flowing
  • Stimulates circulation
  • Reduces blood pressure
  • Treats colds and the flu
  • Lessens menstrual bleeding
  • Relieves tooth aches
  • Acts as a decongestant to clear up coughs and sinus infections
  • Treats skin conditions such as eczema
  • Alleviates allergies
  • Prevents haemorrhaging and treats varicose veins by toning blood vessels and dilating capi

April 28, 2017

GINGER

Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is a flowering plant that is popularly used as a spice or medicinal herb. This plant grows about a metre tall, with narrow green leaves and yellow flowers that originated in the tropical rainforest of Southern Asia. This herb no longer grows wild but is commonly found in India. Indian ginger also has the largest amount of genetic variation. Ginger was exported to Europe in the first century AD and was used extensively by the Romans. The rhizome (root cluster) is the main part of the plant that is harvested and used.  

HEALTH BENEFITS:

  • Stimulates the production of saliva, making swallowing easier
  • Alleviates nausea caused by seasickness/ motion sickness, morning sickness, and chemotherapy
  • Powerful antioxidant
  • Boosts the immune system
  • Decreases blood pressure
  • Alleviates arthritis
  • Decreases the risk of cancer and destroys ovarian and colon cancer cells
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Aids digestion
  • Aids with heartburn and acid reflux
  • Eases headaches and sore throats
  • Helps with the cold or flu
  • Aids with asthma, bronchitis, coughs, and other lung/throat disorders
  • Alleviates colic, loss of appetite, heart palpitations, and diarrhoea
  • Reduces menstrual pain
  • May lower cholesterol levels

April 17, 2017

Glycine max, commonly known as soybean or soya bean, is part of the legume family, and native to East Asia. It is grown for its edible bean which has high levels of protein and has a wide variety of uses. Soybeans have only been introduced to the Western world since the 20th century, and are a relatively easy to grow and hardy plant, due to their adaptation to a variety of soils and climates. The most common type of soybean is a yellow colour, but rarer varieties can come in black, brown, or green colours. Some uses for this bean include: animal feed (defatted soybean meal), meat and dairy substitutes, industrial products such as lubricants, plastics, and waxes, and the production of foods such as soy vegetable oil, soy milk, tofu, tofu skin, soy sauce, fermented bean paste, natto, and tempeh. Any given area of land planted with soybeans can produce more protein than land planted with other crops, or especially, meat animals.   FOR: The soybean is:

  • High in fibre
  • High in protein
  • High in phytoestrogens
  • High in antioxidants
  • Low in saturated fa

April 3, 2017

SAGE

Common sage (Salvia officinalis) is a perennial, evergreen dwarf shrub, which can grow up to 2 feet, and is characterized by woody stems, purple/blue flowers, and grey/green leaves. It is part of the mint family, Lamiaceae and is native to the Mediterranean and the Balkan region (a peninsula and cultural area in South-eastern Europe). The botanical name, Salvia, is derived from the Latin word salvere which means ‘to be saved’. Sage was a sacred ceremonial herb of the Romans, being associated with immortality, and was used by the Greeks as a ‘coronary herb’ because it flushed disease from the body and relieved strain on the heart. In the Middle Ages sage was ingested as a tea to treat colds, fevers, memory and concentration loss, inflammations, ulcers, and many other ailments. There are approximately 8 different types of sage, each differing in appearance and use. These are:

  • Garden sage (Salvia officinalis): This is the most common type of sage, and is used for cooking, tea brewing, decoration, and medicinal use
  • Pineapple sage (Salvia elegans): This variety of sage has tubular red flowers and is used mainly for medicinal purposes
  • Russian sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia): This type has silver/grey leaves, and produces small, blue/purple tubular fl

March 27, 2017

HOUSEHOLD TOXINS AND THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF HOUSEPLANTS

Not only can indoor plants be aesthetically pleasing, they’re also great for your health. There are many benefits of having indoor plants, from clearing toxins and pollutants, to creating a calming environment and an increase in productivity. There are three main types of household toxins. They are: benzene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene. These toxins are produced in the production of synthetic materials, and are often produced from these new materials for some time. Some new items of furniture are coated with polybrominated diphenylethers (PBDE’s) which are a class of flame retardant chemicals notorious for emitting toxins into the air for years after manufacture. Other toxins or toxic compounds around the home can include: mould, lead, radon, bisphenol A, Triclosan, carbon monoxide, perfluorinated chemicals, volatile organic compounds (VOC’s), and phthalates. These toxins live in walls, air fresheners, paints, varnishes, fabric softeners, carpets, couch cushions, baby products, household cleaning products, deodorants, candles, vinyl, non-stick pans, Teflon, insulation, and many more seemingly harmless items. Studies suggest that the indoor areas where we spend most of our time may be 2 – 5 times more polluted than outdoors. Exposure to household toxins causes a variety of health concerns, in

August 11, 2016

CINNAMON

Cinnamon is a spice that is made from the inner bark of several trees called Cinnamomum. Its medicinal benefits have been used throughout history, as far back as the Ancient Egyptians. There are two types of cinnamon: first Ceylon Cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum): known as true cinnamon, and Cassia or Chinese Cinnamon (Cinnamomum aromaticum): which originates from China and is generally less expensive.

HEALTH BENEFITS:

  • Has loads of antioxidants
  • Anti inflammatory properties
  • May reduce the risk of heart disease
  • Reduces cholesterol
  • Reduces blood pressure
  • Dramatically reduces insulin resistance, allowing the hormone to do its job and therefore reducing blood sugar levels
  • Therefore cinnamon has and anti-diabetic effect by lowering blood sugar, reducing insulin resistance, and the presence of a compound in cinnamon acts by mimicking insulin
  • May help prevent Alzheimer’s disease by inhibiting the build up of protein called Tau in the brain
  • May help prevent Parkinson’s disease by protecting neurons, normalizing neurotransmitter levels, and improve motor functions
  • May help prevent cancer
  • Helps to prevent and treat bacterial and fungal infections due to the presence of Cinnamaldehyde which is a strong antibacterial/antifung

February 10, 2016

What is Olive Leaf?

The term “olive leaves” refers to a mixture of leaves and branches from both the pruning of olive trees and the harvesting and cleaning of olives. The production of olive leaves from pruning is 25 kg per olive tree, and 5% of the weight of harvested olives collected at the oil mill can be added to that weight.  Olive tree (Olea europaea L.) leaves have been widely used in traditional remedies in European and Mediterranean countries. They have been used in the human diet as extracts, herbal teas, and powder and contain several potentially bioactive compounds with a range of health benefits.  

Where Does Olive Leaf Come From?

The olive is an important crop in the Mediterranean Basin, which produces 98% of the world total (approximately 11 million tons)  and lends important economic and dietetic benefits to the people of that region. The introduction of olive cultivation coincided with the expansion of the Mediterranean civilizations, and the olive has been used widely in traditional remedies in European Mediterranean islands and countries such as Spain, Italy, France, Greece, Israel, Morocco, Tunisia, and Turkey.

Olive Leaf Benefits

In alternative medicine, olive leaf extract is typically touted for treatment or prevention of the following health problems: Allergies, Alzheimer’s disease, candida yeast, chronic fa