Simple Ways to Stay Healthy

 

herbs

 

First Posted on American College of Healthcare Sciences Health and Wellness Blog.

Herbs for Women: Coping with Women’s Health Issues

By Valerie Lull

Are you familiar with this scenario? You go to the doctor’s office with a health issue unique to women. You get prescribed a synthetic hormone or some other pill only to find it has undesirable side effects. You are concerned, but you’re not sure what to do. Women are faced with these difficult decisions every day, and many are turning to natural and alternative methods for support.

Some of the problems women face include: discomfort and bloating before a period, period cramps, morning sickness with pregnancy, fibroids, and menopause. And those are just a few of the issues women deal with throughout their lives. Can natural remedies—such as herbs—help?

You may have noticed you feel bloated a few days before your period, your breasts are tender, you gain weight, and you might even feel depressed. One time-honored folk remedy is dong quai (also called angelica), Angelica sinensis (Oliv.) DielsDong quai is often called “female ginseng.”

Dong quai can also be made into an infusion, tea, or even a soup. Dong quai A. sinensis is known for supporting healthy blood flow, reducing normal pain associated with menstruation, and aiding in balancing the menstrual cycle.[1]

However, there is some evidence that taking dong quai over a long period of time, or in large quantities, may cause increased cancer risk[2], so it’s wise to be cautious and work with an herbalist or a qualified health practitioner.

Another fantastic herb that has been used for hundreds of years is cinnamon, Cinnamomum cassia (L.). Research shows that cinnamon C. cassia may be helpful for supporting women with irregular menstrual cycles. One theory is that cinnamon regulates blood sugar, and this helps support regular menstrual cycles.[3]

The traditional way of making cinnamon tea is with powdered cinnamon and a strainer, though I prefer to make a tea by putting a cinnamon stick in a cup and pouring hot water over it. Steep ten minutes, and add a sweetener if desired. This is delicious in your morning latte!

Another herb I love is dandelion root Taraxacum officinale (F.H.Wigg.). I like it purely from a comfort standpoint. Dandelion is a natural diuretic,[4] and helps relieve the discomfort of bloating and fluid retention that plague women before a period.[5] Dandelion root is often used as a tea, but it is also available as a supplement.

Pregnancy can be difficult. If you use herbs, it means staying away from almost all of them. There are two herbs that are used for pregnant women under guidance. Be sure to check with your physician before using them.

One of these herbs is ginger Zingiber officinale (Roscoe). Ginger has been used for thousands of years for nausea and vomiting with morning sickness. Today, however, the subject is controversial, but there are studies suggest that one gram of ginger per day may reduce nausea and vomiting when used for short periods of time.[6]

Another ideal herb for pregnancy is raspberry leaf Rubus idaeus (L.). One study showed women were less likely to receive an artificial rupture of their membranes after drinking raspberry leaf tea, or need a caesarean section or forceps at the time of birth.[7]

Do you struggle with hot flashes and night sweats? One herb is maca, Lepidium meyenii(Walp.). This Peruivan herb has been part of folk medicine for centuries, and is effective for supporting women struggling with menopause symptoms.

A 2005 study on maca L. meyenii for early postmenopausal women found that changes in hormone levels showed reduced discomfort associated with menopause. There was a placebo effect after one month of placebo capsules. The conclusion was that there should be further study of maca as an alternative to HRT.[8]

Do you like pumpkin Curcubita pepo (L.) seeds? Crunchy and delicious, they are one of my favorite snacks! Pumpkin C. pepo seeds may also help with menopausal symptoms. In a study done in 2011, women were given wheat germ oil and pumpkin seed oil. The results showed that with pumpkin seed oil there was significant improvement in menopausal symptoms, with a decrease in the severity of hot flushes, headaches, and joint pains. The study concluded that pumpkin seed oil had some benefits and provided strong evidence for further study.[9]

Here is a recipe from HerbaZest that you may find helpful for menopausal symptoms.

Maca Infusion

Sage Salvia officinalis: 2 teaspoons

Maca Lepidium meyenii root (powdered): 2 teaspoons

Blue vervain Verbena hastata: 1 teaspoon

Vitex/chaste tree Vitex agnus-castus berry: 1 teaspoon

Combine all ingredients. Boil a quart of water. Pour water over herb mixture and let it steep 30-60 minutes. The longer it steeps the stronger the infusion will be. The infusion can be refrigerated up to four days. It is taken in ¼ cup servings throughout the day, up to three cups daily.

 

This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a graduate of American College of Healthcare Sciences, the Institution that publishes this blog. However, all opinions are my own. This blog may contain affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

[1] University of Maryland Medican Center, 2013 (2015) Dong quai. Retrieved fromhttp://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/dong-quai (Accessed: 19 August 2016).

[2] Mayo Clinic. (2013) ‘Dong quai (angelica sinensis)’, Mayoclinic. Retrieved fromhttp://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/dong-quai/safety/hrb-20059206

[3] Salmon, M. (2013, October 16). Cinnamon May Help Ease Common Cause of Infertility, Study Says. Health Day. [Online]. Retrieved from: https://consumer.healthday.com/diseases-and-conditions-information-37/misc-diseases-and-conditions-news-203/cinnamon-may-help-ease-common-cause-of-infertility-study-says-681150.html

[4] Tierra, M. (1998) The way of herbs: Fully updated with the latest developments in herbal science. Pocket Books.

[5] University of Maryland Medical Center, 2013 (1997b) Premenstrual syndrome. Available at: https://umm.edu/Health/Medical-Reference-Guide/Complementary-and-Alternative-Medicine-Guide/Condition/Premenstrual-syndrome (Accessed: 19 August 2016)

[6] University of Maryland Medical Center, (2013) Ginger. Available at:https://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/ginger (Accessed: 19 August 2016).

[7] Parsons M1, Simpson M, Ponton T, Raspberry leaf and its effect on labour: safety and efficacy. Australian Coll Midwives Inc J. 1999 Sep;12(3):20-5. Retrieved from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10754818 

[8] H. O. Meissner,1 W. Kapczynski,2 A. Mscisz,3 and J. Lutomski3, Use of Gelatinized Maca (Lepidium Peruvianum) in Early Postmenopausal Women, Int J Biomed Sci. 2005 Jun; 1(1): 33–45. PMCID: PMC3614576 Retrieved from:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23674952

[9] Gossell-Williams M1, Hyde C, Hunter T, Simms-Stewart D, Fletcher H, McGrowder D, Walters C Improvement in HDL cholesterol in postmenopausal women supplemented with pumpkin seed oil: pilot study. Climacteric. 2011 Oct;14(5):558-64. doi: 10.3109/13697137.2011.563882. Epub 2011 May 5. Retrieved from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21545273

Topics: herbsherbal medicinerecipes

 

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Simple Ways to Stay Healthy by Valerie Lull

Herbal Remedies for Healthy Holiday Digestion

 Posted by Valerie Lull  First published on American College of Health Sciences Blog, ACHS.edu

thanksgivingdinner152027355-copy
Turkey dinner

Can you relate to this? You go to Thanksgiving dinner at Grandma’s, eat a bit too much, and feel exhausted, full, and uncomfortable for the rest of the evening. I get it–who can resist the gastronomic delights of the traditional holiday feast, especially when it is with loved ones who have prepared the meal? While I always recommend eating a balanced diet full of whole foods, the holidays are often the time of year where we push our limits. The only problem is that you end up feeling bloated, irritable, and generally uncomfortable after over-eating.

Luckily for us, there are several herbal teas that can support normal, healthy digestion during the holidays.

Ginger Zingiber officinale (Roscoe) Tea 

Ginger Zingiber officinale (Roscoe) is a spicy tea that l love. Its notable warming effect is lovely during the chilly weather of fall and winter. Ginger Z. officinale is a popular spice during the holidays with ginger bread, ginger cake, ginger cookies, and (for the kids!) gingerbread people and houses.

Ginger Z. officinale tea is also ideal for normal digestion. A nice cup of ginger Z. officinale tea helps promote normal movement through the digestive tract and elimination.[1] Ginger also aids in the normal digestion of fat, which can be abundant in holiday meals.[2]

Peppermint Mentha ×piperita (L.) Tea

Peppermint Mentha ×piperita (L.) makes me think of candy canes and sweet after-dinner mints! Traditionally, mint has been used after a meal to ease healthy digestion. It can be in the form of a candy, or if you want to ditch the sugar (which I suggest!), it makes a delicious herbal tea! Additionally, peppermint P. ×piperita supports optimal food transit time and normal elimination.[3]

Cinnamon Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Blume) Tea

The perfect warming spice for a cold winter day! We all know the holidays are filled with sugary sweets. But did you know that cinnamon C. zeylanicum can support healthy blood sugar levels already in the normal range and soothe and support digestion? Since you’re probably already cooking with cinnamon this winter, save a teaspoon for your evening cup of tea!

German Chamomile Matricaria recutita (L.) Tea

There’s a reason Peter Rabbit’s mother gave him chamomile tea when he was feeling unwell! Chamomile Matricaria recutita (L.) is another herbal remedy that has been used in folk medicine for centuries. It has traditionally been used to ease the stomach. It’s relaxing qualities are so soothing and gentle, that it’s been traditionally used with children and babies.Caution: Be sure to look up all contraindications and ask your pediatrician before giving chamomile M. recutita (or any herb) to an infant or child. Children under the age of five should not be given more than half a cup of tea per day.[4]

Licorice Glycyrrhiza glabra (L.) Tea

When thinking of licorice, many think of the imitation-flavored candy. But when purchasing licorice Glycyrrhiza glabra (L.) for medicinal purposes, you need the real thing. Licorice G. glabra is especially soothing to the stomach. Be aware that licorice G. glabra may have side effects, so be sure it is the deglycyrrhizinated kind.[5] Tablets are a common way to take licorice, but a calming tea is a wonderful way to wind down after a big meal. Licorice G. glabramay not mix well with some medications, so be sure to check contraindications and ask your trusted holistic health practitioner before using licorice.

Brewing Your Tummy Teas

Of course, you can brew these herbs individually as teas, or get creative and blend them together. Just be sure to use the correct ratios and check for any contraindications.

Basic Tea Recipe (from the ACHS eBook: Preparing Herbal Teas)

Herb: 1 teaspoon

Purified water: 1 cup

Place your herbs into a ceramic or glass teapot.

Bring the water to a boil. Do not use an aluminum pot.

Turn off the heat and pour the water over the herb.

Cover the pot and let steep for five to 10 minutes.

Strain the tea in a non-aluminum strainer and then drink. Use immediately. Do not store

Simple Ways to Stay Healthy

This week for my blog I am sending out a copy of Chapter 1, Introduction and Folklore, from my book “The Sweet Side of the Stinking Rose, how to use garlic to feel good and live longer”garlic-health-benefits-2

This week for my blog I am sending out a copy of Chapter 1, Introduction and Folklore, from my book “The Sweet Side of the Stinking Rose, how to use garlic to feel good and live longer” The book is available on Amazon.

By Valerie Lull. MH

I believe garlic is one of the most versatile of all the herbs. I like garlic because it is readily available at the local supermarket, it is very inexpensive, it has multiple uses, and it works

.
Garlic’s scientific name is Allium sativum, which comes from the Latin. Allium was the Latin name for garlic and sativum means cultivated. Allium describes a group of plants which include onions, leeks, shallots, and chives.
Historically garlic was called Poor Man’s Treacle because people thought it counteracted poison in animals. Garlic has been studied extensively for its health benefits, and Garlic is one of the most studied of all herbs.

Garlic is a well-known herb. People use it all the time, but it should not be taken to excess. Some folks eat a few raw cloves every day. Most people either love garlic, or they hate it.
One of the reasons people don’t like garlic is the odor. It comes from a chemical called allicin which is in garlic. If you are one of the people who do not like the odor, there are many garlic products on the market that give you the benefits of garlic without the odor.
Some folks like the smell and taste of garlic. It is used extensively in cooking, and Garlic tea with a little cayenne or chicken bouillon added to it is helpful for a sore throat or stuffed up sinuses.
Garlic has a long and colorful history. Garlic is thought to have originated in northwestern Asia. The ancients believed that garlic gave you strength. According to folklore, garlic was fed to the Hebrew slaves in Egypt to strengthen them. Clay figures of Garlic were found in Tutankhamen’s tomb. Garlic is mentioned in the Bible and the Talmud.
The Chinese used garlic for centuries. They used it for heart attacks and circulatory problems. The ancient Greeks and Romans used garlic. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, prescribed garlic for ailments such as leprosy, wounds, digestive complaints, cancerous tumors, and heart problems.
Galen and Dioscorides used it for common disorders like poor digestion and parasites. The ancients believed that Garlic had an effect on the immune system. Both Romans and Greeks used garlic in wartime for their soldiers 1.

Garlic is legendary for repelling vampires, and garlic was used to keep away evil spirits. In the middle ages, it was used in an attempt to ward off the plague.
There was a medieval doctor by the name of Bald in A.D. 900 in England. He used garlic as a remedy for illness. Later garlic fell out of favor and was disliked by the English. Shakespeare refers to garlic as an aphrodisiac. Culpepper, a herbalist from 17th century England refers to the offensiveness of the garlic smell on the breath.
Historically the Arab doctors like Avicenna used garlic. The medieval medical school at Salerno, Italy used garlic. St. Hildegard of Bremen refers to the medicinal use of garlic in her writings.
The London College of Physicians in 1649 used garlic as an antidote to bites from venomous beasts. They also believed garlic was good for disorders of the urinary tract and the bowels. Garlic was considered to be an antidote to the bubonic plague of the 17th century.
The Chinese used garlic for worms. They used Garlic for animals. They used it for people as a preventive of influenza. Garlic was and still is used extensively in Eastern Europe. The Russians use a head of garlic with a cup of milk for dysentery, seizures and threadworms. In the new world, garlic was introduced by the explorers from Europe.
In 1858, Louis Pasteur studied garlic and documented its antibacterial properties.
In both World War I and World War II when there were shortages of medicines, British army medics made a wash of it that they used in treating wounds. The Russians used garlic extensively on the battlefield and garlic won the title of “Russian Penicillin”.
Albert Schweitzer used garlic and was aware of its antibacterial and antifungal properties. He used it to treat typhus and cholera

.
For centuries, the people in northern Europe associated garlic with the Mediterranean countries and suggested that they had “hot blood” from all the garlic they ate. Japan is another country where garlic is not popular.
Whether you like it or hate it, garlic appears to be an exceptionally good herb that has stood the test of time.

1http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=60

Simple Ways to Stay Healthy

By Valerie Lull, MH

Apple Cider Vinegar

 

Apple cider vinegar is a remedy that has been around for a long time. It was an important part of American folk medicine. There is a book by D.C. Jarvis called Folk Medicine. Jarvis was a Vermont country doctor and throughout his book he frequently refers to remedies that include apple cider vinegar. In Vermont they used it for the various ailments of their farm animals as well as for human use.

Apple cider vinegar is one of those universal remedies that has been used for everything from morning sickness, to diabetes to warts. It has been highly promoted as an aid in weight loss. It can also be used in cooking and for cleaning purposes. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence for using ACV, but there are few scientific studies. People say they use it because it works.

Apple cider vinegar is antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal. It contains vitamins A, B6 and E, lots of minerals,antioxidants, acetic acid and malic acid. Traditionally it has been used for ear and skin problems, fungus and warts, digestive disorders, inflammation, and detox. Some people use it daily as a tonic. ACV is a starch blocker which is why many people use it for weight loss. It is also said to lower blood sugar. As with any natural remedy, be sure to discuss using ACV with your health care provider, especially if you are pregnant or diabetic; it could make your sugars go too low. .

When purchasing ACV be sure to buy it in its natural state. The ACV you buy in supermarkets is usually clear, which means it has been processed and refined. Natural ACV has a cloudy look and there is a membrane called the “mother of vinegar”. It has to have this to be natural. There is an excellent ACV vinegar known as Braggs. (I get no remuneration from the company; I just know it is a good product that I use myself).It can be taken with some honey added to make it more palatable.

Check out my website at http://www.valerielull.com.

Sources:
Jarvis, D.C. M.D., Folk Medicine: A New England almanac of natural health care from a noted Vermont country doctor, 1958, Fawcett Books, New York
www.thealternativedaily/the-apple-cider-vinegar-fat-loss-mystery-explained
www.thealternativedaily/Zap-bacteria-with-apple-cider-vinegar-and-these-six-other-superfoods

Valerie Lull
Author
Ten Healthy Teas

Simple Ways to Stay Healthy

Herbal Remedies for Healthy Holiday Digestion

 Posted by Valerie Lull  First published on American College of Health Sciences Blog, ACHS.edu

thanksgivingdinner152027355-copy
Turkey dinner

 

Can you relate to this? You go to Thanksgiving dinner at Grandma’s, eat a bit too much, and feel exhausted, full, and uncomfortable for the rest of the evening. I get it–who can resist the gastronomic delights of the traditional holiday feast, especially when it is with loved ones who have prepared the meal? While I always recommend eating a balanced diet full of whole foods, the holidays are often the time of year where we push our limits. The only problem is that you end up feeling bloated, irritable, and generally uncomfortable after over-eating.

Luckily for us, there are several herbal teas that can support normal, healthy digestion during the holidays.

Ginger Zingiber officinale (Roscoe) Tea 

Ginger Zingiber officinale (Roscoe) is a spicy tea that l love. Its notable warming effect is lovely during the chilly weather of fall and winter. Ginger Z. officinale is a popular spice during the holidays with ginger bread, ginger cake, ginger cookies, and (for the kids!) gingerbread people and houses.

Ginger Z. officinale tea is also ideal for normal digestion. A nice cup of ginger Z. officinale tea helps promote normal movement through the digestive tract and elimination.[1] Ginger also aids in the normal digestion of fat, which can be abundant in holiday meals.[2]

Peppermint Mentha ×piperita (L.) Tea

Peppermint Mentha ×piperita (L.) makes me think of candy canes and sweet after-dinner mints! Traditionally, mint has been used after a meal to ease healthy digestion. It can be in the form of a candy, or if you want to ditch the sugar (which I suggest!), it makes a delicious herbal tea! Additionally, peppermint P. ×piperita supports optimal food transit time and normal elimination.[3]

Cinnamon Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Blume) Tea

The perfect warming spice for a cold winter day! We all know the holidays are filled with sugary sweets. But did you know that cinnamon C. zeylanicum can support healthy blood sugar levels already in the normal range and soothe and support digestion? Since you’re probably already cooking with cinnamon this winter, save a teaspoon for your evening cup of tea!

German Chamomile Matricaria recutita (L.) Tea

There’s a reason Peter Rabbit’s mother gave him chamomile tea when he was feeling unwell! Chamomile Matricaria recutita (L.) is another herbal remedy that has been used in folk medicine for centuries. It has traditionally been used to ease the stomach. It’s relaxing qualities are so soothing and gentle, that it’s been traditionally used with children and babies.Caution: Be sure to look up all contraindications and ask your pediatrician before giving chamomile M. recutita (or any herb) to an infant or child. Children under the age of five should not be given more than half a cup of tea per day.[4]

Licorice Glycyrrhiza glabra (L.) Tea

When thinking of licorice, many think of the imitation-flavored candy. But when purchasing licorice Glycyrrhiza glabra (L.) for medicinal purposes, you need the real thing. Licorice G. glabra is especially soothing to the stomach. Be aware that licorice G. glabra may have side effects, so be sure it is the deglycyrrhizinated kind.[5] Tablets are a common way to take licorice, but a calming tea is a wonderful way to wind down after a big meal. Licorice G. glabramay not mix well with some medications, so be sure to check contraindications and ask your trusted holistic health practitioner before using licorice.

Brewing Your Tummy Teas

Of course, you can brew these herbs individually as teas, or get creative and blend them together. Just be sure to use the correct ratios and check for any contraindications.

Basic Tea Recipe (from the ACHS eBook: Preparing Herbal Teas)

Herb: 1 teaspoon

Purified water: 1 cup

Place your herbs into a ceramic or glass teapot.

Bring the water to a boil. Do not use an aluminum pot.

Turn off the heat and pour the water over the herb.

Cover the pot and let steep for five to 10 minutes.

Strain the tea in a non-aluminum strainer and then drink. Use immediately. Do not store.

As we move into the holiday season, with so many goodies readily available, it’s easy to overeat. While we should do our best to make good choices around our nutrition, these delicious and tasty herbal teas can help support a healthy, happy tummy for the holidays.

This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a graduate of American College of Healthcare Sciences, the Institution that publishes this blog. However, all opinions are my own. This blog may contain affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

[1] Rodriguez-Fragoso, L., Reyes-Esparza, J., Burchiel, S., Herrera-Ruiz, D., & Torres, E. (2008). Risks and Benefits of Commonly used Herbal Medicines in México.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2322858/227(1), 125–135. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2322858/

[2] Prakash, U., & Srinivasan, K. (2011). Fat digestion and absorption in spice-pretreated rats.Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.3(92), 203–210. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21918995

[3] Rodriguez-Fragoso, L., Reyes-Esparza, J., Burchiel, S., Herrera-Ruiz, D., & Torres, E. (2008). Risks and Benefits of Commonly used Herbal Medicines in México.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2322858/227(1), 125–135. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2322858/

[4] German chamomile. (n.d.). Retrieved 23 October 2015, fromhttps://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/german-chamomile

[5] Graedon, J., & Graedon, T. (2008). Best Choices From the People’s Pharmacy. NAL.

 

 

Simple Ways to Stay Healthy

parsley-leaves-on-burlap-copy

By, Valerie Lull, MH

Parsley

Parsley, Petrosalinum sativum,  is that little bit of green stuff that’s on the side of your plate as a garnish when you go to a fancy restaurant. Parsley is also a popular herb that was used for centuries in cooking and is easily grown in a herb garden.

Parsley gets its name from a Greek word “petrose” which means rock or “rock celery”.  Parsley probably originated in southern Europe or eastern Asia.  There are two kinds of parsley, curly and flat. The flat variety is thought to be the hardier of the two kinds and grows well in northern climates.

In the nutrition department parsley is loaded with nutrients. It  has vitamins A, C, K, and folate. It is also a source of iron, copper, and manganese. Parsley has the constituents myristicin, eugenol and limonene. It has flavonids like luteolin and apigenin.

Parsley is high in fiber and is also known as a diuretic. A popular way of taking it is in the form of a tea. The tea is an old remedy for colic, gas and indigestion. It purifies the blood and is thought to help detoxify heavy metals like mercury from the body.

Here is a recipe for making parsley tea from fresh parsley. 

Bring water to a rolling boil. Put a quarter cup of fresh parsley in a mug. Pour one cup of the water over the mug. Steep for 5 minutes. Remove the parsley leaves and discard. Enjoy your tea. 

Check out my website at www.valerielull.com  A new form of my book Ten Spices for Health and Longevity Revised is now available at Amazon.com  Check it out. It contains all kinds of good information about ten common spices and how they can help you in various ways,

References

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=100

http://foodfacts.mercola.com/parsley.html

http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/make-parsley-tea-fresh-parsley-7478.html

Simple Ways to Stay Healthy

By Valerie Lull, MH

Herbs for Cats

People who are interested in holistic medicine are often interested in using natural methods with their pets. Animals are instinctively drawn to certain plants for certain needs that they have. For instance, cats will often nibble on grass. This is their way of taking a laxative.

cats-herbs
As holistic medicine has become more popular for humans, it has become more popular for treating pets as well. There is now an American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association that is dedicated to using natural remedies for animals. Following are a list of several herbs and how they can help your cat.

Dill – is an herb that can relieve a cats upset stomach, nausea and flatulence. You can crush some dill and add it to your cat’s food dish, or make a tea and add a few drops to their wet food.

Eyebright – can help ease irritation and can clear up a discharge coming from your cat’s eyes. To enhance the healing process, you can make an infusion of eyebright. You may need a dropper to get the cooled tea into your cat’s mouth.

Cat Grass – Cat grass is usually wheat grass, oat grass, barley grass or orchard grass. Cat grass does not give your cat a high like catnip, but the cats do seem to enjoy it. Cats eat it for various reasons; to induce vomiting to bring up hairballs, or for a laxative that helps the hairballs pass through the system.

Parsley – Another herb that cats often nibble on is parsley. It helps with their digestion and with kidney ailments. Veterinarians say parsley is good to support your cat’s urinary health because it is antifungal and fights infection. Parsley is included in a lot of health supplements for cats.

Catnip – is loved by felines the world over. It makes them feel good and relieves them of stress and nervousness. A catnip tea bath can be used to soothe itchy ski on your cat.

If you have any questions about using herbs for your cat consult your veterinarian. Do not use essential oils on cats. Their bodies don’t metabolize it well and it can be toxic.

Sources:

Rogers, Lura, Ten Herbs for a Happy, Healthy Cat, 2011, Storey Publishing, LLC
http://www.petmd.com/cat/wellness/evr ct herbs
http://www.cat-world,com.au/General-Cat-Articles/catgrass.html
http://pets.thenest.com/parsley-cats-4108.html

Go to my website at www.valerielull.com and learn more.
Valerie Lull

Author

Ten Healthy Teas

Ten Spices for Health and Longevity