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The Healing Power of Herbs

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Eastern Medicine, which includes Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Ayurveda, is founded on the balance of Qi (pronounced “Chi”) or Prana, which is the essential life-force of the body. When Qi or Prana are in balance, we are healthy. When, there is an imbalance we experience illness and disease. In both TCM and Ayurveda, health is founded on nutrition, exercise (such as Tai Chi, Chi Qong or Yoga), acupuncture, acupressure or massage and herbs. In Eastern Medicine, herbs and flowers are paramount to the treatment of disease.

Herbs and flowers have been used for centuries to treat diseases. As a matter of fact, some common medications are derived from traditional herbs, such as the drug ephedrine which is used to treat asthma (based on the ephedra plant). Herbs can help to strengthen one’s immune system, digestive system, or as an antimicrobial to help fight disease. Essential oils and flower remedies (such as Bach Flower Remedies), based on extracts of flowers and plants, are also useful in bringing the body back into balance. Dried herbs can be used in teas, and essential oils can be used in baths or oil diffusers.

Some common herbs:
Aloe Vera—used to heal and soothe skin irritations.
Chamomile—used as an anti-inflammatory, a digestive, and to calm the mind.
Ginseng—used to calm and strengthen the body
Garlic—used as an antimicrobial to protect the body from infection and helps the body to digest fats and oils
Ginger—used to treat nausea or indigestion and helps with blood circulation
Gingko—used to increase oxygen and blood flow to the brain.
Lavender—used to cleanse and soothe burns or skin irritations, and to calm the mind.
Parsley—used as a source of vitamin C and to help cleanse toxins from the body.
Peppermint—used to help calm the mind, stomach and respiratory system.
Tea Tree Oil—used as an antibacterial or antifungal.
Thyme—used as a digestive and antimicrobial herb.
Turmeric—used as an anti-inflammatory.

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Quote of the Month

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“Every time you don’t follow your inner guidance, you feel a loss of energy, loss of power, a sense of spiritual deadness.”

—Shakti Gawain

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I am the mother of four daughters and a Certified Health Counselor, as well as a passionate advocate of organic and local food and a healthy lifestyle. I decided to become a health counselor to fulfill my passion of working with children and parents to improve their health and family life. Learn more about me at healthytiffin.net/about.html

In this issue:

Recipe

Herbed Tomato Soup

  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 ½ lbs tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 lbs diced tomatoes, in a jar
  • 3 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 Tbsp thyme, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  1. Heat the butter in a large saucepan, add the onion, and cook until soft, 5–10 minutes. Add the fresh tomatoes, stir well, then add the diced tomatoes from the jar and vegetable stock, and simmer for about 15 minutes.
  2. Reduce the heat to very low and blend soup with a hand-held blender or in a food processor. Add herbs and garlic and Parmesan and blend again.
  3. Season with salt and pepper.

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