The interest in natural remedies has grown enormously over the past few years and now enjoys wide recognition in the medical world. Herbs, oils and flower remedies are sourced from locations around the globe and despite the fact that many of the preparations used today are based on ancient knowledge, new discoveries are being made continually.
Herbal remedies were in use long before the advent of western medicine. First used by the Chinese more than five thousand years ago, today the use of herbs is one of the fastest growing areas of complementary medicine in the west and is attracting a large number of practitioners and advocates. Treatments are manufactured from plants, or parts of plants, and can take various forms such as oils, tablets or loose herbs, as well as roots, barks and powders. The Chinese discovered how effective these treatments can be and without doubt their civilisation held a vast knowledge bank into which we are only just beginning to tap. Users of herbal remedies are discovering anew their efficacy in the treatment and alleviation of symptoms of illnesses as well as the role they have to play in maintaining good health.
The underlying principle in herbal medicine is that of restoring balance to the body by use of remedies containing plant material. The types of illnesses that can be treated with herbs are wide ranging and extend from respiratory problems to skin complaints, yet they are not only used to treat disease: many people find them effective in relieving stress, encouraging sleep, improving the immune defence system or providing extra energy.
The use of herbs should be undertaken with the same level of care as one would use when taking conventional medicine. Herbal treatments can be powerful and should be treated with the same sort of respect as a bottle of aspirins or prescribed medicine from your GP. After all, many treatments in western medicine consist of drugs that are derived from plant extracts. It is extremely important to buy your herbal remedies from a known and trusted source where advice is on hand and instructions on dosage are provided. If you are using, or plan to use, herbal remedies alongside conventional medicine or if you are suffering from a long term or serious illness, you should always talk to your doctor and consider visiting a herbal practitioner, who will be able to advise on the best and most effective treatments.
Some herbal remedies can interfere with the action of prescribed drugs, or vice versa, so it is particularly important to consider your treatment as a whole. As with any medicines, not all herbal remedies are suitable for use during pregnancy or breast-feeding, so always make sure you read the label thoroughly to find out about contraindications.
At Baldwins we stock a wide range of herbs in many different preparations, including organic herbs which are fully certified by the Soil Association, and a range of popular and easy to cultivate seeds so that you can grow your own herbs in your garden or window box. Above all, we are dedicated to assuring our customers of top quality herbal remedies and free advice. Our helpline staff are experienced and knowledgeable and will give you all the advice you require – 020 7703 5550.
How to Take Herbal Remedies:
These are normally taken as an infusion made with boiling water. Add 1 teaspoon to a cup of boiling water, leave to infuse for 5 to 10 minutes, then strain.
Roots and Barks
Roots and barks needs to be simmered in boiling water for about 10 minutes. Use 1 to 2 teaspoons of the root or bark with 1.5 cups of water. After simmering, strain and cool slightly.
Many people prefer to use tinctures because they need no preparation. Simply add 2 to 5 mls of tincture to a glass of water. Tinctures are alcoholic extractions of herbs and are normally available in 1:3 or 1:5 parts herb to liquid in 25% to 60% alcohol. If the tincture is put into boiling water, almost all the alcohol will evaporate.
Herbal fluids are similar to tinctures but are 3 to 4 times their strength, and hence dosages are reduced. Fluids are made with equal parts of dried herbs and liquid. Alcohol free extracts are available. Herbal fluids should be prepared in the same way as tinctures.
Herbal tablets are a convenient way to take herbs, especially when travelling. Tablets are made from herbal extracts that have either been dried and powered, or made into oils for capsules. Always look at the dosage on the label, and take note of instructions about whether the tablets should be taken with, before, or after food.
Ointments and Creams
Ointments and creams consist of herbal extracts combined with oils, fats and water. These are often used for skin complaints.
Many people like to drink herbal teas simply because they enjoy the taste! The selection of herbal teas is now enormous, using herbs from locations as far apart as the Far East, Europe, and the Caribbean.
No related posts.