There are plenty of examples from herbalism, both the Eastern herbal tradition of Ayurveda and Western herbalism, of home remedies that we can use to keep ourselves in tip top condition.
During my annual spring clean of our bathroom cabinet last week, I noticed how very different the contents had become. No longer is it packed with painkillers and other over the counter pharmaceuticals. In my bid to use mostly foods and herbs as home remedies, the bathroom cabinet has started looking sparser and sparser. We keep a First Aid kit, some herbal ointments, essential oils, plasters and a few homeopathic remedies.
The contents of the kitchen cupboard also lend themselves to concocting some useful home remedies for our most common ailments and the occasional unusual one too, with spices forming a particularly useful complement to the herbs. In addition, we are now growing a lot of our own food and many medicinal herbs and foods, such as mint, sage, rosemary, thyme, bergamot, basil, comfrey, calendula, valerian, camomile, guilder rose, rose, dandelion, raspberry leaf, rhubarb, nettle, aloe vera, hawthorn, feverfew, fennel and lavender.
Whilst chronic conditions might call for something more man-made, for those who are are mostly in good health, nature’s pharmacy seems to be all that is needed.
Home remedies, for me, form an integral part of a sustainable approach to wellbeing that prioritises optimum health and preventive medicine. What I love about this is the self-empowerment that comes from spotting when we’re off balance and acting promptly to restore bodily harmony using the abundance of nature. I also enjoy the simplicity and beauty in the fact that much of what grows around us, whether in our back gardens, in parks and public spaces or in the countryside, has nutritional and healing qualities, if we only know what to look for.
How do we know what to use, when and how to prepare remedies? Here are some favourite books that we refer to regularly:
Natural Home Pharmacy. Keith and Linda Scott.
The Complete Book of Ayurvedic Home Remedies. Vasant Lad.
Food For Free. Richard Mabey.
Nature’s Pharmacy. Deborah Fowler.
And I’m particularly fond of my wall charts, purchased from Lemonburst.
I’ve been on the lookout for some informative (rather than sales based) blogs on home remedies, to no avail. If you are a Herbalist or Nutritional Therapist who writes such a blog, do get in touch. Equally, if you subscribe to a home remedies blog that you think might benefit others, let us know all about it.