by Dorje Root, RH (AHG)
For those of you who have been following this series of articles, you know that we’ve talked about 30 different herbs that are easy to wildcraft anywhere in the country, easy to grow, and/or easy to find in a grocery store. All of these herbs are common, not exotic, and none are endangered or threatened. With a little effort one can learn what to do with them to take care of common health concerns.
Herbs are different from OTC and prescription drugs, in that each
Elderflower (Sambucus nigra).
herb has many uses. Because they have many constituents that work synergistically they act on multiple systems of the body. That being said, they can also be categorized into different broad systems. For instance, chamomile, peppermint, dill, fennel, ginger, catnip and basil are all helpful for the digestive system. For colds and flus we have: elder flower and berry, echinacea, yarrow, garlic, onion, ginger, thyme, horehound, pine, mullein, and sage. Motherwort, chamomile, and lemon balm as nervines are all helpful for anxiety and depression. Dandelion, burdock, calendula, and thistle benefit the liver.
Here are a few specific combinations that have been used over time:
Elder flower, yarrow, and peppermint, combined in equal parts and made into a hot tea has been used to reduce fever. It’s beneficial for children and the dried herbs can be mixed in advance.
Thyme, mullein, oregano, sage (garden), and peppermint can be used singly or in combination in a steam for colds and flus.
Chamomile and catnip are both helpful for babies and children with colic. Dilute teas for small children. Strong chamomile tea is helpful as a digestive aid for adults.
Many of these herbs have nutritional benefits too. Nettles and dandelion leaf have more vitamins and minerals than any greens you can buy in a store.
So now here’s a disclaimer: I count on common sense to be work– ing when you’re inexperienced with herbs (or children) especially because I’m talking about using herbs for kids. If your child has more than a passing thing, check it out, go to a MD or ND and get a diagnosis. Err on the cautious side, especially at first or when you have doubts. And although there are some truly fabulous books out there, partner with someone who knows herbs well while you’re learning. I haven’t said a lot in these articles about exact preparations or dosages for a reason, partly space, but also because these articles are meant to be educational but not a how-to manual. Enjoy and learn enough to be useful!
Dorje Root, RH (AHG) is an herbalist and natural healer, also working with Plant Spirit Medicine, Intuitive Energy Healing and ‘The Journey’ cellular healing. For an appointment call 719-937-7786 or visit www.rootsofhealing.com.