Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Parsley is Blood Purifying

Parsley is a Blood Purifying SuperFood

parsley blood cleanser         Parsley is considered the world’s most popular garnish. Parsley was originally cultivated in Europe and the Middle East but has become a staple in American cuisine. This herb has remarkable healing and blood purifying benefits that classify it as a superfood.

Parsley has been revered throughout history and used for both culinary and medicinal purposes. The Greeks made crowns of parsley to bestow upon their sports champions. It was used for the Hebrew celebration of Passover as a sign of rebirth in the spring. The Romans used it to deodorize corpses before funerals.

It contains a unique combination of nutrients that make it a powerful superfood. The volatile oil compounds myristicin, limonene, eugenol, and alpha-thujene have been shown to inhibit tumor cell formation. Additionally, parsley is rich in flavonoids-including apiin, apigenin, crisoeriol, and luteolin that have strong anti-oxidant properties.

Parsley also contains about three times the amount of vitamin C by volume as an orange. Vitamin C is extremely important for healthy immune function and youthful skin & joints. Additionally, it contains carotenoid anti-oxidants lutein and zeaxanthin which enhance eye function and help the body neutralize damage from UV radiation.

Super rich in chlorophyll

Parsley is super rich in chlorophyll, the energy producing substance that gives herbs and plants its characteristic green color. Chlorophyll helps to alkalize the body, purify blood, and form new red blood cells. In addition, the chlorophyll and flavonoids in parsley help to enhance cellular glutathione formation. Higher levels of cellular glutathione allow the body to detoxify and heal more effectively.

Through these properties, parsley is able to improve cellular oxygenation properties. Increased oxygenation = increased cellular energy = increased detoxification & healing mechanisms.
Parsley is a fantastic source of folic acid which is extremely crucial for its ability to reduce homocysteine levels. Homocysteine is an inflammatory mediator that is linked with cardiovascular disease and brain degeneration. Folic acid is also important for pregnant women as it plays a critical role in fetal development. It is also an important nutrient for cancer prevention.
Parsley is also known as a powerful diuretic that reduces blood pressure and enhances kidney function. In particular, parsley increases sodium and water excretion thru urine and increases potassium reabsorption into the kidneys. This is particularly useful for anyone with poor circulation, swelling, cellulite, and other cardiovascular problems.

Juiced parsley is also believed to stimulate uterine contractions during labor. This juice has also been used to enhance skin and hair texture. It is also thought to reduce inflammation and mucous formation throughout the body. This is why many individuals see results using parsley to reduce symptoms of asthma, allergies, bronchitis, & urinary tract infections.
The rich chlorophyll content is also a great body odor and breath freshener. Chlorophyll acts as an anti-mutagen and it reduces odor causing bacteria which are responsible for producing bad breath and body odor. Parsley combines well with garlic and onions and reduces the strong pungent body odor these sulfur rich foods are known to cause.
Parsley dipped in apple cider vinegar is especially useful for reducing body odor and improving digestive function. The natural acids, chlorophyll and enzymes present in this food combination synergize to enhance the intestinal microflora. This is one of the best aids for neutralizing acid reflux, gas and bloating.


Plantain plant    Plantain
Botanical: Plantago major (LINN.)
Family: N.O. Plantaginaceae

Here's an excellent picture of a plantain, with it's seed spikes. (just ignore the weed behind it).

Synonyms---broad-leaved plantain, ripple grass, waybread, slan-lus, waybroad, snakeweed, cuckoo's bread, englishman's foot, white man's foot, buckhorn plantain, dog's ribs, hock cockle, lance-leaved plantain, rub grass, dooryard plantain, round-leaved plantain, (Anglo-Saxon) weybroed, Che Qian Zi (China), Breitwegerich (German), Tanchagem-maior (Portuguese), Llantén común (Spanish), Llantén major (Spanish) 
Parts Used---Root, leaves, flower-spikes. 

Growth & Habitat --- A perennial "weed" that can be found almost anywhere in North America and much of Europe. You probably have some in your backyard! Plantain is thought to be indigenous to Eurasia. It will grow in sun to shade, and in almost any soil - plantain is very adaptable. Plantain spreads by seeds.

Plantain is a low-growing, green plant with oval, ribbed short-stemmed leaves. The leaves form basal rosettes which tend to hug the ground. The leaves may grow up to about 6" long and 4" wide, but tend to vary greatly in size depending on their soil and light conditions. Plantain sends up a leafless flower stock in summer/fall - the stalks can be up to ten inches tall.

There are over 200 species in the plantain family, and they are found worldwide. Many have herbal uses. Plantago major is the most common one in North America, but Plantago lanceolata can also be found. Both have the same medicinal uses, and are very similar in appearance. Plantago major has wide rounded leaves, with a flowering spike covered with small nubbly seeds; Plantago lanceolata has longer, slender leaves, and a mostly bare flowering stem, with a conelike cluster of flowers on the top.

(Please note that plantain - the starchy, banana-like fruit, is completely different and not related to the plantain "weed" we are talking about!)

Plantain is edible - harvest the young, tender leaves for use in a salad, or steamed and used as a spinach substitute. The leaves do get tough quickly, so make sure to harvest only the youngest leaves. The immature flower stalks may be eaten raw or cooked. If you're really adventuresome, you can harvest the seeds. They are said to have a nutty flavor and may be parched and added to a variety of foods or ground into flour. The leaves, seeds and roots can all be made into an herbal tea. 

Plantain was brought to the US and also to New Zealand by European settlers who valued it for it's culinary and medicinal properties. The settlers seemed to leave the plant wherever they went, thus earning it the name "White Man's Foot' or "Englishman's Foot" by the natives of both countries.
Plantain has been used medicinally by Europeans for centuries. Herbals dating from the 1500's and 1600's are full of recipes and uses for plantain. It was considered to be almost a panacea - a cure-all, and a quick search shows that is has historically been recommended as a treatment for just about everything, up to and including dog bites, ulcers, ringworm, jaundice, epilepsy, liver obstructions, and hemorrhoids! Plantain was so commonly known it is even found referenced in works by both Chaucer and Shakespeare. 

Plantain is usually plentiful and can be easily harvested anytime from early spring until frost. Please do be careful where you harvest it - roadsides are notoriously dirty and dusty, and ditches are often sprayed with herbicides. Leave a spot in your backyard where you allow it to grow, and you can harvest your own all growing season! If your neighbors think you are crazy, let them know that plantain is a food source for some friendly wildlife such as butterfly caterpillars, and that the seeds are a food source for many varieties of birds. 

Plantain is very high in beta carotene (A) and calcium. It also provides ascorbic acid (C), and vitamin K. Among the more notable chemicals found in plantain are allantion, apigenin, aucubin, baicalein, linoleic acid, oleanolic acid, sorbitol, and tannin. Together these constituents are thought to give plantain mild anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antihemorrhagic, and expectorant actions. Acubin has been reported in the Journal Of Toxicology as a powerful anti-toxin. Allantoin has been proved to promote wound healing, speed up cell regeneration, and have skin-softening effects. 

Modern medical research is proving to uphold many of the historical uses of plantain - especially as a wound healer, and as a treament for lung conditions such as bronchitis or asthma. Medicinally, plantain is astringent, demulcent, emollient, cooling, vulnerary, expectorant, antimicrobial, antiviral, antitoxin, and diuretic. Plantain is approved by the German Commission E (a sort of German "FDA" that studies and regulates herbs and herbal uses) for internal use to ease coughs and mucous membrane irritation associated with upper respiratory tract infections as well as topical use for skin inflammations. Two Bulgarian clinical trials have suggested that plantain may be effective in the treatment of chronic bronchitis. 

How much is usually taken? The German Commission E officially recommends using 1/4-1/2 teaspoon (1-3 grams) of the leaf daily in the form of tea made by steeping the herb in 1 cup (250 ml) of hot water for 10-15 minutes (making three cups (750 ml ) per day). The fresh leaves can be applied directly three or four times per day to minor injuries, dermatitis, and insect stings. Syrups or tinctures, approximately 1/2 teaspoon (2-3 ml) three times per day, can also be used, particularly to treat a cough. Finally, 1/2-1 1/4 teaspoons (2-6 grams) of the fresh plant can be juiced and taken in three evenly divided oral administrations throughout the day. Of course as with all herbal medicines, you are your own best doctor - listen to your body and pay attention to it's interaction with the herb, and you will undoubtedly figure out your own best uses and dosages. 

Plantain is not associated with any common side effects and is thought to be safe for children Plantain is classed as "able to be safely consumed when used appropriately" by the American Herbal Retailers Association. Some preliminary research does show, however, that some allergy sufferers may have a reaction to plantain pollen, so if you feel this may be a problem for you, you may want to only use the plantain leaves for your herbal preparations. 

One of plantain's most common uses is as a poultice for stings, bites, scrapes and rashes. The simplest way to harness plantain's healing powers is to crush a few fresh leaves, and apply to the affected area. Replace fresh leaves as necessary. The fresh plantain "juice" takes the pain away and seems to work wonders at staunching blood flow and closing wound edges. It's also wonderfully refreshing and soothing to sunburn. 

Plantain infusion (tea) can also be used as a soothing wash for sunburn, windburn, rashes, or wounds. To make a plantain infusion, simply add a small handful of fresh plantain leaves to a cup or two of water, and bring to a gentle boil. Turn off heat, and let steep, then strain out the leaves. The infusion is best when fresh, although it can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days. 

Our favorite way to use plantain is in a herbally infused oil. Gently fill a container with fresh plantain leaves that have been lightly bruised or crushed. (Dried plantain can be used - if you are using dried plant material, you only need to fill the jar one-half full). Cover the leaves with oil - any vegetable oil will do, cover the container, and let sit in the sun for a couple of weeks. The will turn a beautiful dark green color. Strain out the leaves and you have a lovely herbal oil to use. It's wonderful to soften, soothe and heal any manner of skin conditions. We love to make a herbal salve from this oil - simply add 1-2 oz. melted beeswax to warmed infused oil. Stir over low heat until the beeswax and oil are uniformly combined, and then pour into clean jars or tubs. 

Susun Weed recommends using plantain oil on babies and small children instead of lotions or vaseline. Natural vegetable oil that has been infused with the gentle, healing essence of plantain is far healthier to put on a baby's delicate skin than chemical-laden lotions or petroleum by-products. She also recommends using whole, clean, gently crushed fresh plantain leaves directly on a baby's diaper rash as an overnight polutice. This will help heal common diaper rash, as well as a yeast-infection diaper rash. Of course a plantain oil or salve can also be an excellent cure for diaper rash or cradle cap.

We use plantain-infused oil in just about all of our oil-based products, such as salves, lip balms, body oils, etc. We wildcraft chemical-free plantain from our property and the land next to ours. It dries well; the dried herb makes and excellent infusion and can be used to make an herbally infused oil that is almost as potent as the oil made from fresh leaves.


Raise Your Serotonin

Monday, June 25, 2012

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


Healing Benefits of Bell Peppers
 Photo Credit bell pepper image by Chef from
Bell peppers are available in a variety of colors, including red, yellow and green. Although the three are similar in calorie content, the vitamin and mineral content varies widely among the three types of peppers. Try adding one or all of these nutrient-dense vegetables to your next salad or stir-fry to increase the vitamin C and B content. 

All three types of bell peppers contain a similar amount of calories per cup. Green peppers are the lowest in calories, with 30. Yellow peppers contain 40 calories per cup, and red peppers contain 46 calories. Each type of bell pepper contains between 7 and 10 g of carbohydrates, 1 and 2 g of protein and less than 1 g of fat. Red peppers contain the most fiber, with 3.1 g per cup. Green peppers contain 2.5 g and yellow contain 1.3 g.

Bell peppers are packed with several nutrients.  They are a good source of vitamin C, thiamine, vitamin B6, beta carotene, and folic acid.  Bell peppers also contain a large amount of phytochemicals that have exceptional antioxidant activity.  Those phytochemicals include chlorogenic acid, zeaxanthin, and coumeric acid.  

When comparing the nutrient values of the different bell peppers, studies have shown that red bell peppers have significantly higher levels of
nutrients than green.  Red bell peppers also contain lycopene, which is a carotene that helps to protect against cancer and heart disease. 

 Possibly due to their vitamin C and beta carotene content, bell peppers have been shown to be protective against cataracts.  Just like other nutrient-dense vegetables, bell peppers contain many different powerful phytochemicals.  Bell peppers have also been shown to prevent blood clot formation and reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes probably due to their content of substances such as vitamin C, capsaicin, and flavonoids.  Although chili peppers contain a higher amount of those substances, bell peppers should still be promoted especially for individuals with elevated cholesterol levels.

Bell peppers belong to the plant family Capsicum annuum and are native to countries like Mexico, Central, and Northern-south America. The main producers of this vegetable species are China, Turkey, Romania, Spain, Mexico, and Nigeria. They are also called sweet peppers, are glossy in appearance and come in a variety of colors, like red, yellow, orange, purple, brown, and black.
Due to their high vitamin and mineral content, bell peppers are known for their beneficial effects on a number of systems in the human body, like cardio-vascular system and optic system, and are also important for maintaining general health and hygiene.
To help you get a clear idea about the nutritional value of bell peppers, a Food Rating Chart has been provided in the lines below.
Bell Pepper Nutrition Facts
Amount of Bell Pepper: 1 large
Total Weight of Bell Pepper: 164 g
Basic Components
1.6 g
10.3 g
151 g
0.8 g
Total Calories
213 KJ
Calories From Fat
18.4 KJ
Calories From Carbohydrate
167 KJ
Calories From Protein
27.2 KJ
Dietary Fiber
3.4 g
3182 mg
3706 mg
Total Fat
0.5 g
Poly Fat 
0.1 g
Vitamin A
5135 IU
Vitamin A
Alpha Carotene
Beta Carotene
32.8 mcg
2663 mcg
0.1 mg
0.1 mg
1.6 mg
Vitamin B6
0.5 mg
0.2 mg
Vitamin C
209 mg
Vitamin E  (Alpha Tocopherol)
2.6 mg
Vitamin E (Beta Tocopherol)
0.1 mg
Vitamin E (Gamma Tocopherol)
0.2 mg
75.4 mcg
Vitamin K
8.0 mcg
Pantothenic Acid
0.5 mg
11.5 mg
0.7 mg
19.7 mg
0.2 mg
42.6 mg
346 mg
0.2 mcg
6.6 mg
0.4 mg
Saturated Fats
16:0 Palmitic
41.0 mg
18:0 Stearic
3.3 mg
Mono Fats
18:1 Oleic
3.3 mg
Poly Fats
18:2 Linoleic
73.8 mg
18:03 Linolenic
41.0 mg
Other Fats
Omega 3 Fatty Acids
41.0 mg
Omega 6 Fatty Acids
73.8 mg
Amino Acids
42.6 mg
59.0 mg
466 mg
31.2 mg
346 mg
45.9 mg
27.9 mg
34.4 mg
59.0 mg
59.0 mg
82.0 mg
39.4 mg
82.0 mg
65.6 mg
19.7 mg
14.8 mg
50.8 mg

              Murray , Michael N.D.. The Encyclopedia Of Healing Foods.
               New York: Atria Books, 2005.

              Centers For Disease Control And Prevention-5 A Day.
              National Agricultural Library-USDA.
              Wikipedia The Free Encyclopedia

Saturday, June 16, 2012



I can’t quite bring myself to pay over $5 for a quart of Pedialyte when I know that I can make it at home and that it not only costs pennies to make, but is far superior in nutritive value and function.

The goal of Pedialyte is to replace the electrolytes and trace minerals that are lost when you become dehydrated, which is especially dangerous and can happen quickly in little ones.  However, the “beneficial” contents of pedialyte (Sodium, Potassium, Chloride, and Zinc ) are not bio-available; meaning that these minerals are synthetically produced and more or less flush right out of your child’s system.

So instead of reaching for the food-color laden, artificially flavored dextrose (aka, Pedialyte), make your own natural electrolyte replacement drink at home!  The ingredients to this ARE bio-available; they occur naturally and are easily absorbed, making them more effective (and healthier!)

Here is the recipe that I use, but it can be tweaked for flavor and age (see below)

Lemon Electrolyte Drink
  • 1 quart of water
  • juice of 2-3 lemons (fresh is preferable, but I’ve also used 1/3 c. lemon juice concentrate in a pinch)
  • 1/3 c. raw honey (do not give raw honey to children under the age of 1) (see my note at the bottom for an alternative for little ones)
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp. sea salt (not table salt – but unrefined sea salt)
I typically warm about 1/2 c. of the water and place it in the bottom of a quart-sized Mason jar.  Make sure it’s not hot water, but warm enough to help the honey and sea salt dissolve.  Mix the warm water with the honey and sea salt and until mostly disolved, and then add the lemon juice and remaining water to fill the top of the jar.  Mix thoroughly and there you go!

Here’s why it’s so easy and so effective:
The raw honey is naturally anti-microbial and great for infections. (see our post here for more info on raw honey) There may be a myriad of reasons for the dehydration, but in the case of illnesses, raw honey is my go-to sweetener because of it’s beneficial minerals and soothing properties.  Also, the sugar content will help restore low blood sugar levels that are common after bouts of diarrhea or vomiting.

Real, freshly squeezed lemon juice is a natural thirst quencher and helps fight fatigue.  It is also great for fever reduction and a natural source of vitamin C (source).

And finally, the amazing power of sea salt is what gives this drink an extra punch and is what aids in replacing the lost trace minerals and electrolytes.  Make sure that you are NOT using regular ol’ table salt; which has been refined at high temperatures, is often bleached for uniform color, and contains almost no trace minerals.  Sea salt contains all 92 of the vital trace minerals that our bodies need, so make sure to use pure, unrefined, high quality sea salt in order to make sure that you are truly replacing the minerals that are needed during re-hydration. source   

I don’t technically worry about dosage when we have the stomach flu because honestly, you’ll know when they’ve had too much… I simply try to get my kids (and myself and hubby) to sip on this throughout the day as much as possible, or several sips per hour.  This is a basic electrolyte replacement drink , so you don’t just need to use it when you’re sick – it’s ideal for workouts, traveling, and hot summer days.  My hubby does manual labor and in the summer time, I send several containers of this with him to work each day, to make sure that he stays hydrated.

NOTE FOR BABIES: It’s generally not recommended that you give babies under 1 year of age raw honey, so instead, I substitute palm sugar to sweeten the concoction.  It has a very low glycemic index and is rich in Potassium, Magnesium, Zinc and Iron. Here’s a great article about palm sugar and it’s uses.


Friday, June 15, 2012


I’m a firm believer that God has put everything we need on this earth to prevent diseases and to heal ourselves.

Here is a list of some of top healing herbs that may be in your cupboard:

Rosemary has shown a lot of cancer-protective potential.” Frying, broiling, or grilling meats at high temperatures creates HCAs (heterocyclic amines), potent carcinogens implicated in several cancers. Rosemary contains carnosol and rosemarinic acid, two powerful antioxidants that destroy the HCAs.

Oregano this super herb is very rich in anti-oxidant phytochemical flavonoids and phenolic acids. Oregano oil has been classically used as a disinfectant, an aid for ear, nose, & throat/respiratory infections, candida, and any sort of bacterial or viral conditions.

Dill contains calcium and iron, and the oils in the plant may help to neutralize carcinogens, which are substances that have been shown to cause cancer. Dill also has a number of beneficial healing properties for the digestive system and has been used since ancient times to treat heartburn and diarrhea.

Cayenne highly effective pain reliever and is an ingredient in some over-the-counter pain relieving creams. It is also great for improving circulation, healing sore throats, and stimulating sweating to help relieve cold symptoms. 

Cilantro the carboxylic acid in cilantro binds to heavy metals such as mercury in the blood and carries them out of the body. Their removal reverses the toxin buildup that causes chronic fatigue, joint pain and depression.

Mint counteract nausea and vomiting, promote digestion, calm stomach muscle spasms, relieve flatulence, and ease hiccups. Menthol, the aromatic oil in peppermint, also relaxes the airways and fights bacteria and viruses. Menthol interferes with the sensation from pain receptors, thus it may be useful in reducing headache pain.

Curry Powder could relieve your pain. It might also: PREVENTCOLON CANCER AND ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE.

Parsley diuretic herbs such as parsley prevent problems such as kidney stones and bladder infections and keep our body’s plumbing running smoothly by causing it to produce more urine.

Basil it is anti-inflammatory and antibacterial, as well as being a good source of magnesium and antioxidants. Medicinally, it is used to treat constipation, indigestion, diabetes and hypothyroidism (under active thyroid). 

Ginger it is excellent for treating upset stomachs and is still recommended to pregnant women today as a way to combat morning sickness. Ginger is also effective at treating gas and bloating, sore throats and colds. It is also anti-inflammatory and aids in digestion.

Source: 10 Herbs That Heal

Sunday, June 10, 2012


Benefits of following the Alkaline Diet
(* Alkaline Foods prevent Cancer )

There are many benefits to following a diet high in alkalizing foods. One of them being that one gets more of the essential Vitamins and Minerals your body needs in its natural form which means that it gets Absorbed Better.

A diet high in alkalizing foods also means that one has more energy to tackle the daily stresses and less dis-ease in many respects. On the Alkaline Diet you might just find that some of the things that have ailed you disappears overnight. Symptoms like Cancer , acid Reflux, İndigestion, IBS, Allergies, Hay Fever, Gout, Arthritis, Athletes Foot, Constipation and more can disappear literally overnight on this diet.

To get the best benefits out of alkaline health, there are things that you can do to get more alkaline into your body, and certain things that you should avoid.

Alkaline Diet Tips :

a ) Have the juice of a Lemon or Lime each day, 1 tablespoon full at a time in a glass of water

b) Drink more Water – at least 8 glasses a day ( 2 lt )

c ) Eat more *Green Leafy Vegetables – raw, cooked or steam fried

d ) You must eat * Spicey Foods , add your food ( Black Pepper ,Cayenne pepper, Cinnamon, Curry, Ginger, Garlic etc. Spices – all of these are excellent for your health

You must stay away from These ( Acidic Foods ) in Alkaline Diet :
1) Microwaved Foods : the Microwave Changes the Chemical structure of any food you cook in it

2 ) Soft Drinks & Sodas : cold drinks like Coke and other sodas are really acidifying

3) Processed Meat : Processed meats include bacon, sausage, hot dogs, sandwich meat, packaged ham, pepperoni, salami and virtually all red meat used in frozen prepared meals.
They are usually manufactured with a Carcinogenic ingredient known as " Sodium Nitrite"

4 ) Sugar

5 ) Alcohol

6 ) White Bread