October 14th, 2014Oats: Avena sativa

Jo Francks, M.H.

 

Oats; we often overlook this common food as an effective medicine. Oats are a good source of magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, calcium and are also high in silica.

Different parts of the plant are used at different stages of growth. Oat straw is used for its high amounts of calcium and silica. This is used in Dr. Christopher’s Herbal Calcium formula.

The green tops can also be used as a tonic for the nervous system. A tincture or a tea of the green oats is recommended for nervous strain. They have been used for heart trouble and depression. It is also taken as an antidote for drug addiction and alcoholism.

Oats are exceptional for skin care. Used in the bath they help with itchy skin and help to soften and sooth the skin. Use 1 cup blended dry oatmeal in a tub of water. Another way to use it in the tub is to make a gallon of tea from the oat straw and add that to the tub. Blended oatmeal is also used as a scrub. Mix 1/2 cup blended oatmeal with 1/4 cup shavings of natural soap and 1/2 cup ground apricot pits or almonds. Put 2 tablespoons of the mixture into a reusable muslin tea bag. Get the bag wet and use as a facial scrub or a body scrub. Hang to dry and reuse 3 or 4 times.

In his book Back to Eden, Jethro Kloss referred to oatmeal as “one of the finest foods we have to prevent disease” and that it is “the ideal basic food for children during the winter months to prevent infection from all zymotic diseases.” Oats are also especially helpful when recovering from an illness.

Whether it is being used for food or medicinal purposes, oats provide many qualities worth looking in to. Try using oat straw tea to calm your nerves or have a nice warm bowl of oatmeal on a cold morning to get your day started. Or for a raw breakfast soak some oat groats in distilled water overnight, strain and blend with fresh berries and a sweetener of your choice and enjoy.

 

Jo Francks is a Master Herbalist graduate of The School of Natural Healing. She is also a Holistic Iridologist and Quantum Touch practitioner. 


June 30th, 2014Constipated Babies

 

Tonya Judd

 

Over the course of the past few weeks I have received quite a few phone calls concerning constipated babies. Most of these sweet, new little beings have not had a bowel movement within a 7-10 day time period.  Their tummies were hard and when they would try to eliminate, they would cry because of the pain caused from the hardened stools. Their concerned and loving mothers were at a loss as to what to do for such little ones. In most cases breastfed babies do not have a problem with constipation, but it can happen. On the other hand, formula fed babies do tend to have frequent bouts with constipation. If this is the case, you might try switching formulas or switch to goats’ milk which is much less mucus forming. If you are breastfeeding, your baby should have a bowel movement each time they nurse. If this is not happening, do not be alarmed, but look at your own diet and the foods you may be consuming that may be causing constipation. Regardless of your situation, if your wee one is having constipation issues you can try some of the following remedies to alleviate constipation and bring your baby relief.

 

            1.  Dr. Christopher’s Kid-E-Reg Formula. The Kid-E-Reg Formula is a gentle bowel formula that supports the intestines, acts as a mild laxative, and is safe to use for an extended period of time.  It contains: Slippery Elm Bark, Licorice Root, Fennel Seed, Anise Seed & Fig Syrup in a glycerin base.

2.  Molasses water. 1/2 to 1 teaspoon black strap molasses to 8 ounces of water. This can be given by using an eye dropper or adding to a bottle. Molasses softens hardened stools making elimination easy and painless and is soothing to the intestinal tract.  Molasses is also a great source of iron.

3.  Licorice Tea. Licorice is a mild laxative, and stimulates peristaltic action.

4.  Lemon water. Lemon increases bile and peristalsis which causes a bowel movement.

5.  Diluted prune juice. Softens the stools and is very nutritive.

6.  Gently massaging the abdomen in the area of the colon. This can be done using extra virgin olive oil.

7.  Reflexology. Work the area on the foot that corresponds with the large and small intestines.

8.  Exercising/bicycling your baby’s legs. The colon is a smooth muscle and becomes more efficient with exercise. This simple exercise can help to get the peristaltic action going just like when we as adults exercise.

9.  A warm catnip enema. Lay your baby on a towel in the tub and keep the upper half of their body covered for warmth. Never give all of the solution at once. Remember to go slowly with babies and massage the abdomen as you go.

10. The Lower Bowel Extract. This formula can be used on babies if the Kid-E-Reg is not producing the desired results. The dosage would obviously not be what is listed on the bottle. You could start with 5-10 drops and work up if needed. This formula contains Cascara Sagrada Bark, Barberry Bark, Cayenne Pepper, Ginger Root, Lobelia Herb, Red Raspberry Leaf, Turkey Rhubarb Root, Fennel Seed and Goldenseal Root in a base of pure vegetable glycerin and distilled water.

Tonya Judd is a Master Herbalist graduate of The School of Natural Healing and an Emotional Release practitioner.



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