12 Sep Healing Herbs You Can Grow Yourself
Nothing beats the empowering feeling of plucking some fresh medicine straight out your garden, or even off your windowsill.
We know the herbs we cook with smell and taste delicious but they are also pretty powerful little healers that can bring some relief when we are under the weather, or even add that boost to your nutrition that makes all the difference to your daily health. To top it off, you can’t get much more convenient and cost effective than growing your own medicine chest.
Here are a few common herbs that you can easily grow that have medicinal properties
Basil is so deliciously fragrant you hardly need an excuse to add it to your daily diet. Apart from being a perennial favourite Italian herb, it has some wonderful health benefits too.
• Rich in cancer and age-defying antioxidants
• Calms the stomach
• You can chew basil leaves to ease up coughing when you have a cold
• Basil is a natural antibiotic for those times you have a touch of the dreaded lurgy
• Chew on a leaf and rub it onto insects stings or bites for relief
• It can help balance blood sugar if you drink it as a tea regularly
• It has high doses of vitamin C which also helps stave off those nasty free radicals and viruses
Love it or hate it coriander is a super healing herb. If you don’t like the leaves, the seeds taste great, different to the leaves, and also have healing benefits.
• Aids with digestion by stimulating gastric juices and reduces inflammation in the gut
• Balances blood sugar by helping you produce insulin
• Is a tonic for your liver and kidneys
• Can remove heavy metals and toxins from your body
• Anti-inflammatory effects are good for arthritis
• Helps lower bad cholesterol and raise the good
• Antimicrobial and antifungal properties are good for easing up diarrhea
• It acts as a strong anti-histamine for seasonal allergies
• Can lower high blood pressure
• Acts as a powerful antibiotic against salmonella
• The leaves are high in bone-building calcium and vitamin C
Note: Cilantro can be irritating to some people’s skin or if used too excessively can cause a skin sensitivity to sunlight
Marjoram is in the same family as oregano but has sweeter, more floral tones than oregano’s peppery bite. It has similar properties, being a great antibiotic and all-round green medicine.
• Protects against food poisoning and relieves nausea
• Improves digestion by stimulating enzymes and saliva production
• Helps clear mild intestinal infections
• An antibacterial and antiviral treatment for colds and flu
• A support for mumps and measles
• Anti-inflammatory effects help with asthma, headaches, body aches and fever
• Antidepressant and calming to help you overcome the blues and anxiety
• A handy remedy for PMS
Sage is more than just yummy in stuffings, it also can be used to:
• Reverse greying hair
• Soothe fevers
• Treat gum infections, as well as mouth and throat infections
• Calm anxiety and nervous disorders
• Stimulate digestion
• Support your liver
The flowers of sage are also edible – a pretty and nutritious addition to your salads, as well as making a lovely healing tea infusion.
• A great source of vitamin A which is beneficial for your eyes, skin, hair and nails
• Antiseptic and antibiotic, a useful remedy for colds and flu that also helps relieve congestion
• A thyme infusion can be used to rinse your scalp as a dandruff treatment
• A digestive aid and treatment for gassy, unhappy stomachs
• Its antifungal properties combat yeast infections
It was believed in medieval times that Thyme could help prevent nightmares and make you brave – worth a try!
This humble so-called weed that pops up everywhere, is one of the most amazing natural medicines in plain sight and is good for more than just blowing a few wishes into the air.
• An all-round healer and strengthener for your body
• A wonderful aid for when you are detoxing
• An excellent liver remedy. When you support your liver it has a knock-on effect beneficial for allergies, eczema and acne
• Natural antioxidants to help your body stay young and healthy
• Diuretic that increases urine production by your kidneys, alleviating edema
• A digestive aid
It’s much more than just a garnish you decorate your plate with, perhaps those garnishing are meant to be eaten!
• It’s a great breath freshener
• Helps you digest your food better
• A really good kidney tonic that can cleanse the kidneys, dissolve kidney stones and treat kidney infections
• It has anti-inflammatory properties
Parsely can cause uterine contractions so is not recommended for pregnant women.
Rosemary means Dew of the Sea, but it has more than just a poetic name and delicious taste.
• The traditional saying that rosemary is for remembrance is more than just an adage, rosemary has been found to be extremely beneficial for preserving your brain and memory
• A rosemary rinse for your hair is a well-known tonic for stimulating hair growth and relieving dandruff
• A great insect repellent
• It helps sooth indigestion
• Rich in antioxidants and is anti-inflammatory
• It helps protect your eyes and keep them healthy
Peppermint is super tasty and a refreshing summer addition to your iced teas, as well a perfect companion to desserts. It also happens to make a delish and healthy tea.
• Peppermint is a classic remedy for digestive issues and upset stomachs and can help relieve the symptoms of IBS
• Freshens your breath
• Helps clear sinus congestion
• Soothes headaches
• Peppermint can ease menstrual cramps
Even if you don’t have a garden, you can cultivate a delightful row of herbs on your kitchen windowsill. The wonders of the herbal world are just a pick away if you take the time to cultivate these beautiful green friends that just keep giving in so many ways.