The use of herbs as natural medicines goes back thousands of years, to when their use was first recorded in China. Throughout the ages, their uses have been recorded and passed down from generation to generation. Herbs seemed to drop out of favor with the rapid development of synthesized drugs. They have recently made a resurgence, with many people realizing, that although the quick fix associated with the drugs, may temporarily alleviate a problem, it may not be the best way of remaining healthy.
What Is A Herb?
Basically a herb is any plant that can be used medicinally to treat the body. Such definition includes fruit, vegetables and culinary herbs.
Garlic is a good example, because it has so many medical applications. They include, colds and flu, blood pressure, high cholesterol, and urinary infections amongst many others.
Many people include culinary herbs, such as parsley, coriander, fennel, fresh mint, basil and others, in recipes, and food preparations. They are, perhaps unwittingly, getting regular doses of herbal medicine.
How Do Herbs Work?
Herbs, or shall we call them medicinal plants, work in a variety of ways. The active content of different herbs determines which medical conditions they are able to treat.
There are herbs that treat infections.
Herbs to assist with blood circulation.
Herbs to treat mucus membranes.
Herbs to stimulate appetite and digestion.
Herbs to detoxify and assist with waste elimination.
Herbs to assist with hormone problems.
This list is by no means exhaustive, as there are herbs to use with most afflictions, but it serves to demonstrate that different herbs can help to strengthen, and balance bodily systems, and treat a host of maladies.
How to Take Herbs
There are many ways to take herbs internally, and the most obvious is as a food, as already indicated. Otherwise they can be taken as teas, tinctures, capsules, tablets, and powders. Some herbs may also be useful for gargles, and mouth washes. Herbs are also beneficial for external usage as herbal baths, ointments, lotions and creams, and essential oils.
Where Do Herbs Come From?
Because herbs are natural plants, they are obtained from different parts of the world, depending on the climatic and other conditions they require. Modern international trading means that it is probably easier than it has ever been, to purchase anything, including herbs and herbal preparations, from wherever they originate.
There are at least hundreds and more probably thousands of different medicinal herbs growing in our world. As with orthodox medicine, expert help should be sought, before taking any herbal preparation that you are not 100% sure about. Professional advice is readily available, and there are also excellent books and periodicals that are informative.
There is much concern these days about poor diet, obesity, malnutrition, and lack of exercise. People are slowly coming to realize, that to a large extent, they are responsible for their own health and well-being. Some are seeking a natural health lifestyle, including wholesome organic food, free from highly toxic pesticides and fertilizers.
There is nothing more wholesome than naturally grown herbs and plants. They provide not only the food you eat, but also the air your breathe.
If you care for them – they will care for you.
Olive Oil is pressed from the Olive fruit which grows on the Olive tree.
The wild Olive tree originates in Asia Minor. Successive civilizations have spread the olive tree over a large area of the world. It reached Greece in the 14th century BC and in the 6th century BC the Romans introduced the Olive all around the Mediterranean.
After the discovery of America the Olive tree spread to the West Indies and the American continent.
Olive oil is the oil obtained from the fruit of the olive tree (Olea europaea L.).
Virgin olive oils are produced solely by mechanical or other physical means under conditions, particularly thermal conditions, that do not lead to alterations in the oil, and which have not undergone any treatment other than washing, decantation, centrifugation and filtration. There are several categories of olive oils varying in quality and taste. Olive oil connoisseurs talk about Olive Oils in a similar way as wine fans rave about their favorite vintage.
There are two types of olive oil: “huile vierge” (virgin oil) and “pure” oil. Good olive oil (cold pressed from ripe fruit) must have a pale clear color and be absolutely odorless.
Virgin oil is produced by the cold pressing of only first class fruit. This oil is never bleached and always shows it’s natural color. It is excellent for the making of vinaigrettes and dressings. This fresh and fruity oil combines well with green salads. It is also an excellent base for delicious sauces such as pesto, which is made by mixing olive oil, fresh basil, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese and garlic. Or add that special touch to some warm, crusty bread by spreading it with olive oil, some crushed garlic and tomato.
Pure olive oil is pressed from both the olive pits and the olive fruit. It is excellent for baking, frying and marinading. The advantage of using olive oil rather than butter or margarine for baking and frying, is that it can be heated to high temperatures without burning. This makes it very suitable for the stir frying of vegetables as well as meat, chicken or fish. It is important to heat the oil prior to frying as this scalds the outside of product being fried, keeping all the juices contained within and allowing very little fat to absorb. The combination of olive oil and garlic makes a delicious, healthy marinade.
Olive oil is probably the most versatile of all oils used in the kitchen. Greece, France, Italy and Spain are the most important producers of olive oil and make up the largest part of the annual world production of 1.5 million tons.
Fruits not only contain vitamins and minerals which are necessary for the body, but also provide lots of plant nutrients. These fruits with different colors have different functions. Understand the characteristics of each kinds of fruits with different colors, choose reasonable food, it is good for women who want to lose weight.
Orange color fruits
The representatives of orange color fruits are lemon, mango, oranges, papayas, persimmons, pineapple and orange. All of them contain natural antioxidants β-carotene, which can improve immune function. In addition, the orange pigment in citrus also fight with cancer, its effect may be stronger than β-carotene.
Red fruits include tomatoes, pomegranate and so on. Carotenoid which have antioxidant effects is their root. As is known to all, Carotenoids can clean up free radical, inhibit the formation of cancer cell and improve human immunity. In addition, most red fruits have very low calories, so it good to health.
Dark purple fruits
Purple fruits contain proanthocyanidins which can eliminate eye fatigue, such elements which can enhance the elasticity of blood vessels to prevent cholesterol accumulation is the best ingredients to prevent cancer and arteriosclerosis. The representatives of dark purple fruits are grapes, blackberries, blueberries, plums and so on. Compared with light-colored fruits, dark purple fruits contain more vitamin C which cans increase the body’s resistance.
In addition, the purple fruits have higher mineral contents such as potassium, magnesium, calcium than normal fruit. These ions mostly exist in fruits with the form of organic salts. It has a crucial role in balancing ion in people’s body.
Green fruits such as green apples contain lutein or zeaxanthin, their antioxidation can protect the vision.
In addition to the color, when we select fruits, we should also consider our own constitution. People with heat body are advised to eat cold fruits such as pear, banana, watermelon, cantaloupe and other fruits. People with cold body are advised to eat chill litchi, longan, cherry, chestnut, etc. Myocardial infarction, stroke patients should eat fruits help digestion such as bananas, oranges and peaches, not to eat persimmons, apples and other fruits which contain more tannic acid. Coronary heart disease, high blood lipid of patients should eat fruits which are rich in vitamin C and niacin such as hawthorn, citrus, grapefruit. All of them can reduce blood fat and cholesterol.