Easy Natural Remedies & Impressive Benefits Of 5 Common Herbs
Herbs and their properties have been utilized to flavor food, to heal, and to transform environments for centuries. Walking through a lavender field at twilight, one could see how easily the herb tickles the senses. With its intoxicating aroma and its delicate beauty, it is nothing short of magical. The botanical world as our primary source of medicine can be traced back to the first few tribes in Europe; where evidence indicates a strong connection to the natural world. As hunter-gatherers, these tribes would have had to rely on their knowledge of plants and the seasons to survive. As mankind transitioned to relying more on agriculture, our early ancestors continued to study the information provided by Mother Nature. Herbs not only have many medicinal properties, but they carry an enormous amount of good vibrations as they hold the earth’s energy within them. Each herb has unique properties that can be utilized to enhance goals. Whether you choose to use herbs for physical healing or you want to stack the energy odds in your favor, here are some common herbs and my favorite ways to use them.
Some of the most interesting health benefits of rosemary include its ability to boost memory, improve mood, reduce inflammation, relieve pain, protect the immune system, stimulate circulation, detoxify the body, protect the body from bacterial infections, prevent premature aging, and heal skin conditions. Native to the Mediterranean region, rosemary is one of the most commonly found herbs in a spice rack, and for good reason – not only does it have a wonderful taste and aroma, but also a wealth of beneficial health benefits when regularly added to our diet. Similar to many other useful herbs, rosemary is in the same taxonomic family as mint, but doesn’t have that characteristic flavor.
Medicinally, rosemary is used for:
- Mood and Stress: The aroma of rosemary alone has been linked to improving mood, clearing the mind, and relieving stress in those with chronic anxiety or stress hormone imbalances. When the plant is consumed or applied topically it can have similar effects as ingested.
- Antibacterial Potential: While the general immune boosting qualities of rosemary are impressive enough, it is specifically powerful against bacterial infections, particularly those in the stomach. H. pylori bacteria is a common and very dangerous pathogen that can cause stomach ulcers, but rosemary has been shown to prevent its growth when consumed. Similarly, it is linked to preventing Staph infections, which kill thousands of people each year.
- Stomach Soother: Rosemary has traditionally been used by dozens of cultures as a natural remedy for upset stomachs, constipation, bloating, diarrhea, and everything in between. Its anti-inflammatory and stimulant effects are largely the cause so adding it to your weekly diet can quickly help your gastrointestinal system.
Energetically, rosemary can be used for:
- Mental clarity
Rosemary is male in nature and ruled by Leo, the element fire, and the sun. It’s sacred to Hebe, Aphrodite, and the Virgin Mary.
How can you use it?
- Getting the health benefits of many herbs can be as easy as simply cooking with them. Rosemary has a warm, bitter, and more astringent taste that gives a wonderful flavor to soups, sauces, stews, roasts, and stuffing.
- Aromatherapy also uses rosemary essential oil for this purpose, but that concentration of active components isn’t necessary to have positive effects on stress and mood.
- Steep rosemary leaves in a glass of hot water and then gargle or swish the water in your mouth to eliminate bacteria and give you naturally fresh and clean breath all night!
- To reduce pain, apply rosemary essential oil to the affected area. Try to apply oil to the temples, or simply smelling the aroma of rosemary since it has been linked to reducing the severity of migraine symptoms.
- Rosemary is useful for ritual baths, and for making sacred herbal water for ritual cleansing, blessing, and purification. Bathing in rosemary will enhance your memory and will make you more memorable to those you meet throughout the day.
- Burn rosemary as an incense to enhance memory (even for success in school). Also, use when meditating or doing dream work to remember past lives.
- Place rosemary under your pillow to help you to remember your dreams and to keep away nightmares and other unwanted night time visitations.
- Wear Rosemary oil on those occasions that you want to make a lasting impression.
Out of the many health benefits of sage, some of the most important include its ability to improve brain function, lower inflammation throughout the body, prevent chronic diseases, boost the strength of the immune system, regulate proper digestion, alleviate skin conditions, increase the health and strength of bones, slow the onset of cognitive disorders, and prevent the onset of diabetes. Don’t let the name of “common” sage or garden sage fool you; this perennial woody herb is anything but normal or average when it comes to its impact on human health. Scientifically known as Salvia officinalis, sage is closely related to rosemary, and they are often considered “sister herbs”. In fact, many of Sage’s health benefits are derived from rosmarinic acid, the organic compound found in rosemary that makes it so powerful.
Medicinally Sage can be used for:
- Cognitive Boost: Research has shown that even small amounts of sage, whether smelled or consumed, can increase recall abilities and memory retention in subjects.
- Inflammation Issues: The anti-inflammatory qualities of sage extend to health issues such as arthritis and gout, as well as general inflammation of the cardiovascular system, which can result in heart disease and increased blood pressure. The flavonoids and phenolic compounds found in it are responsible for these beneficial effects.
- Immune System Strength: There are some antimicrobial properties that have been identified in sage, and while it is usually consumed in relatively small quantities, you can create a topical application of sage (salve or tincture) and use it to prevent bacterial and viral infections that attack the body through the skin.
Energetically, Sage is known for:
It is associated with the element of air and the planet Jupiter. Sage is sacred to the Greek Zeus and Roman Jupiter. It is also a symbol of the Virgin Mary. While there are many verities in the sage family, white sage Salvia apiana is sacred in many Shamanic and Native American belief systems and is used in smudging, and other ceremonies to purify the body and space. Read my post on Energy Cleansing here.
How can you use it?
- Creating a tincture or steeping leaves can also do the trick, but if you suffer from inflammatory issues, particularly in the respiratory or gastrointestinal tracts, you can eliminate that inflammation with this sage brew (or tea). I like to mix sage and raw honey in a jar. Let it steep for a few months, and use this in teas to treat or prevent colds and flu.
- Diffuse essential oils. The neural pathways stimulated by the extracts and essential oils of sage can keep the mind fresh and youthful well into your older ages.
- Create a topical application of sage (salve or tincture) and use it to prevent bacterial and viral infections that attack the body through the skin. Sage has been shown to be effective against certain skin conditions, including eczema, psoriasis, and acne.
- Adding sage leaves to your diet can increase your vitamin K levels significantly and strengthen bones. Just a single service has 27% of your daily recommended intake.
- There’s more than one way to smudge. By far, the most common ritual use for sage is in smudge bundles, usually by lighting the tip and burning them during cleansing. But if you are smoke intolerant, or you just prefer a cleaner method, you can also boil sage on the stove for a cleansing effect. Or, use my Smokeless Smudge Spray recipe here.
- Include in money sachets for prosperity. Throw a pinch of dried sage in your abundance bag.
- Scatter around an outdoor sacred space to bless the ground. If you use a specific spot in your yard or a nearby natural area, scatter dried or fresh sage leaf on the ground to bless the space and clear it of negative energy.
- Place a sage sachet in your pillow to drive away nightmares. Sage has a protective quality that is specific to mental disturbances like nightmares.
The health benefits of chamomile essential can be attributed to its properties as an antispasmodic, antiseptic, antibiotic, antidepressant, antineuralgic, antiphlogistic, carminative, cholagogue, cicatrisant, emenagogue, analgesic, febrifuge, hepatic, sedative, nervine, digestive, tonic, antispasmodic, bactericidal, sudorific, stomachic, anti inflammatory, anti infectious, vermifuge, and vulnerary substance…. just to name a few. There are two types of Chamomile, the Roman Chamomile, which is scientifically known as Anthemis Nobilis and the German Chamomile, whose scientific name is Matricaria Chamomilla.
Some medicinal properties of both types are:
- Induces Perspiration: Which helps to remove toxins and agents that cause infections while simultaneously cooling down the body and effectively providing relief from fever.
- Antiseptic, Antibiotic, Disinfectant, Bactericidal & Vermifuge: Both varieties have very good antiseptic and antibiotic properties which do not let biotic infections develop, which are those infections due to biotic factors such as bacteria and fungi. They also eliminate infections that are already present.
- Anti-inflammatory & Sedative: While Roman Camomile is found to be effective in calming down annoyance, anger, and irritation, particularly in small children. The German variety, on the other hand, is found to be more effective on adults for curing inflammation, particularly when it is located in the digestive or urinary system. They also reduce blood pressure and curb the swelling of blood vessels.
- Reduce Scars: They are both very popular in the world of cosmetics, since they diminish the scars, m, rks and spots on the skin and on the face, making them a cicatrisant. They both also protect wounds, cuts, and bruises from becoming infected.
Energetically, chamomile is used to:
- Attract money
It is associated with the sun, Leo and the element of water. It helps cleanse and invigorate the throat chakra (5th). It is associated with various Sun Gods, including Ra, Cernunnos, Lugh, among others.
How can you use it?
- Herbal baths are making a comeback for kids and adults alike. Assemble your own herbal bath in a mix matched sock, along with other herbs.
- Looking for something natural to use for pink eye? Chamomile is the traditional go-to herb we reach for when dealing with this troublesome infection. Learn more here.
- Soothe aches and pain with a salve that uses Roman chamomile essential oil. Chamomile salve is a quick and easy way to soothe burns. It’s equally effective as a way to quiet “butterflies” in a nervous tummy.
- Making your own herbal hair rinses can help you avoid the questionable hair ingredients found in many commercial products.
- An infusion used to wash thresholds (doors and windows) will help keep unwanted energies or entities from passing through.
- Or sprinkle powdered chamomile flowers around your self or home.
- Add to sachets for luck or money. Or place pressed chamomile flowers in your wallet to attract money to it.
- Of course, you can make a brew or tea.
Some of the most important health benefits of lavender include its ability to relieve stress, improve mood, promote restful sleep, reduce inflammation, lower skin irritation, prevent infections, eliminate dandruff, and soothe stomach bloating.
Nearly forty plants within the mint family are classified as lavender, although the most common version of lavender is Lavandula angustifolia, which is the variety on which the color “lavender” is based. The reason that it is so widely used is its massive range of applications, from food and fragrance to cosmetics and herbal medicine; this plant is chock full of essential oils that can have powerful effects on the human body, as well as one of the most unique and beloved scents in the world.
Lavender can be used medicinally to treat:
- Anxiety and Stress: There are a number of methods to use lavender to soothe anxiety and stress. The natural organic compounds in the leaves and flowers of lavender can be grounded between the fingers and then rubbed onto the temples. This topical application can soothe the body and mind, relieving anxious thoughts and balancing out mood.
- Sleep Issues: If you regularly struggle with insomnia, apnea, or restless sleep patterns, it can seriously impact your life. The flower’s impact on the nervous system can also help to clear your mind of negative thoughts or clutter. It is commonly combined with meditation techniques, either in essential oil or aromatherapy form.
- Antiseptic Ability: Although many people turn to lavender to relaxation and aromatherapeutic applications, its effect on infection is impressive, to say the least. Many people apply crushed lavender leaves on wounds and injuries to promote not only quick healing of the wounds but also to prevent the development of infections at those sites. This has been a popular use for lavender since antiquity.
- Bloating and Digestive Issues: The polyphenols found in lavender have a wide range of effects on the body, including anti-aging impacts, but it can also help prevent the development of harmful bacteria in the gut. Essentially, this will prevent the accumulation of gas in the gut from the emissions of those bacteria. This will ease stomach discomfort, reduce bloating, and eliminate cramping.
Energetically, Lavender is used to:
- Sharpening the mind
- Encourage or strengthen
- Pure love
Lavender is masculine in action and associated with Mercury. It is also associated with the element of air and the astrological sign Virgo.
How can you use it?
- Again, cooking with an herb is a great way to absorb its benefits. As a culinary element, lavender is used in salad dressings, honey, sauces, beverages, various teas, and as a flavoring spice for a number of other cultural dishes.
- By brewing a few lavender flowers in hot water, you can steep a wonderful tea that has been used to induce sleep and relaxation for thousands of years.
- When your skin is feeling dry or irritated, simply spray some of the infused water on the area and enjoy the quick relief that it can provide. This can also work for chronic conditions, like psoriasis, eczema, and even acne.
- Make your hair healthy and beautiful by steeping lavender flowers as though you are brewing tea and then apply that mixture to your hair. It will function as an effective shampoo and significantly boost the health of your follicle beds and hair.
- Mix crushed and dried lavender flowers in baking soda and sprinkle on carpets before vacuuming.
- To bring love your way, carry lavender flowers in a sachet on your person, or hang stalks of it in your home.
- To get a good night’s sleep, with calming dreams, stuff a pillow with sprigs of lavender.
- Lavender in the home brings peace, joy, and healing.
- Dried lavender leaves are great for placing into mojo bags.
This popular herb has several benefits which include proper digestion and weight loss, relief from nausea, depression, fatigue and headache, treatment of asthma, memory loss, and skin care problems. Mint, the well-known mouth and breath freshener has more than two dozen species and hundreds of varieties. It is an herb that has been used for hundreds of years for its remarkable medicinal properties. The market is full of products like toothpaste, chewing gum, breath fresheners, candy and inhalers which have mint as their base element. Most of us are familiar with the refreshing application of mint, but it has far more to offer than that.
Medicinally, mint can be used to aid:
- Digestion: Mint is a great appetizer or palate cleanser, and it promotes digestion. It also soothes the stomach in case of indigestion or inflammation. If you are someone who travels long distances via plane or boat, the menthol oil derived from mint can be very soothing for nausea and related motion sickness.
- Headaches & Migraines: Balms with a mint base or basic mint oil, when rubbed on the forehead and nose, gives quick relief in case of a headache. The herb is a naturally soothing substance, so it can alleviate the inflammation and temperature rise that is often associated with headaches and migraines.
- Skin Care and Pimples: While mint oil is a good antiseptic and anti-pruritic material, mint juice is an excellent skin cleanser. It soothes skin and helps to cure infections and itchiness. In addition to being a good way to reduce pimples, it can even relieve some of the symptoms of acne. It’s anti-pruritic properties can be used for treating insect bites like those of mosquitoes, honeybees, hornets, wasps, and gnats. The cooling sensation will relieve you of the irritating sensation and the constant urge to scratch, and the anti-inflammatory nature of mint will bring down swelling. In that same vein, mint oil is often a basic component of bug repellent products like citronella candles, because the strong aroma is unappealing to most insects.
- Weight Loss: Apart from all the other health benefits of mint, it also can help in your efforts to lose weight in a healthy way. Mint is a stimulant, as we’ve already mentioned, but it also stimulates the digestive enzymes that absorb nutrients from food and consume fat and turns it into usable energy. Therefore, by adding mint to your diet, you are increasing the amount of fat that is being consumed and put to use, rather than being stored and contributing to your weight gain.
Energetically, mint can be used in:
- Cleansing and consecration
- Dream work
- Psychic development
All mint plants are associated with the planet Venus. Other associates of peppermint are with the signs Virgo or Aquarius, and the element of air.
How can you use it?
- Mint can be eaten before the main course so the food will digest comfortably.
- Balms with a mint base or basic mint oil, when rubbed on the forehead and nose, gives quick relief in case of a headache.
- Studies have shown that mint oil can reduce the nipple cracks and nipple pain that so often accompany breastfeeding.
- Boosting your memory is another reason to pop that stick of gum in your mouth or chew some leaves when you’re feeling less than brilliant.
- Use in ritual baths for strength and vitality.
- Write a wish on paper and wrap it in spearmint leaves; place in a red cloth and sew with red thread, then keep in a safe and secret place.
- Place a few leaves in your purse or wallet, or rub where you keep your money.
- Spearmint used in amulets carries the qualities of success and protection and is believed to add clarity, vividness, and color to dreams.
And all of these herbs can be used:
In a brew or tea.
Or to infuse drinking water. I like to do this coupled with gem elixirs.
I try to use as many of these ideas to enrich my life with both the medicinal and magical properties of these herbs. Do you have a favorite way to incorporate herbs into your daily life? If so, tell me in the comments.