5 Natural Remedies for Your Medicine Cabinet
If you consider yourself health conscious, you're probably fed-up of using pharmaceutical medicines to ease every little ache, pain, or skin issue. In addition to all the chemical ingredients that make up conventional medicines (good luck trying to pronounce the names, let alone spell them), using lab created remedies leave you open to a plethora of unpleasant side effects. The most common, and dare I say "most pleasant" include nausea and vomiting, allergic reactions, drowsiness, and insomnia. It doesn't end there, some of the strangest drug side effects include (brace yourself) inability to hold bowel movements, amnesia, vision changes, compulsive behavior, and birth defects. Seriously, that's just not right.
Besides the possible side effects, most chemical-based medications only treat one symptom, so you're stuck buying a ton of medicines and hoping they react OK together. Then they sit in your medicine cabinet for who knows how long and the next time you think about taking one they've already expired (has anyone else frantically researched drug shelf-lives at 2am?). All this adds up to a lot of wasted money, overflowing medicine cabinets full of chemicals, and the increased risk of side effects when you mix medicines together.
The great news (that we often forget about) is that Mother Nature has always had our back when it comes to combating many common health issues. While you might not be able to replace all your pharmaceutical meds right away, there are many easy, affordable, and all natural (really natural, not natural flavoring natural) remedies that can help you clean up your medicine cabinet. And the best part is that most natural remedies treat more than one ailment - so you're not buying one remedy for every symptom (plus natural remedies often smell good, taste good, and are less expensive than the factory made medicines).
Lucky for us, there are many natural remedies available, but the following are my top 5 picks you need to know about:
Ginger is a natural remedy powerhouse. This root plant boosts immunity, relieves nausea and motion sickness, has anti-inflammatory properties, increases metabolism which assists weight loss, aids in digestion, improves circulation, increases insulin sensitivity, and opens up the sinus passages. Ginger is available fresh, in powder, and pill form (such as Wakaya Perfection's Ginger-Eze.) You can make a simple ginger paste to apply directly to your skin, take a daily pill (a homeopathic doctor prescribed this to me years ago to improve my circulation), or try some delicious ginger recipes (ginger tea and cookies perhaps?).
2. Dilo Cream
If you haven't heard of dilo cream, you're not alone. Dilo cream is made from the oil of the dilo tree - called the tree of a thousand virtues - which only grows close to ocean water in the Pacific and tropical regions of Africa. Dilo cream is becoming a popular natural skin remedy because its magical ingredient, calophyllic acid, is only found in dilo oil. Calophyllic acid enhances your skin's own repair system - this means better hydration, firmness, elasticity and less appearance of lines and wrinkles. It also soothes sunburns, rashes, insect bites, and various skin irritations.
3. Bee Propolis
Propolis is a sticky resin used by bees to keep their hive together and protect it from outside dangers. Because of its function, bee propolis has strong anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory properties and is rich in flavonoids. Typically honey has trace amounts of bee propolis, but you can buy pure propolis as a liquid to ingest orally or directly put on your skin to treat minor cuts or sores. If you choose to take it orally (that's how I always use it), it does have a strong taste so you might want to mix it with quality honey. I don't travel without bee propolis and I always take it at the first sign of a cold.
Eucalyptus is one of my favorite refreshing scents. Of course, it made the list because it's a powerful sinus and chest decongestant, encourages breathing by opening up airways, and relieves achy and sore muscles. It's easy to use and available fresh or as an essential oil. You can simply smell the oil, make a homemade vapor rub (minus the petroleum), massage the essential oil into your legs or sore areas, or add it to a hot bath. One of my favorite ways to enjoy eucalyptus is a drinking a fresh eucalyptus martini (I told you natural remedies could taste good too)!
Garlic makes the list because it's easily available worldwide, full of natural healing properties, and it's really had my back the last couple of years. Garlic strengthens the immune system, fights colds and infections, treats hypothyroid conditions, combats bad cholesterol, provides a good dosage of B6 to create new cells and ward off mood swings, regulates blood sugar, and keeps mosquitoes away. Garlic is available in pills, powders, and fresh. It's great to cook with and you can use it directly on your skin.
Have you tried these natural remedies before? What other ones do you swear by? I'd love to have a conversation in the comments below.
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