Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Food As Medicine? Home Remedies

I had a really great question from a client today, who had read something about cinnamon and honey being a great combination for improved health.

A few weeks back, when lots of mamas I know were struck with the cold, I was recommending lots of garlic, and honey and ginger tea.

These ideas generally come from the practices of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayuvedic medicine, both of which strongly believe in the healing power of foods. In my training as a holistic nutritionist I have been exposed to these schools of thoughts, and have put some of these remedies to the test in my own life with amazing results.

Here are some of the more common, and most interesting ones - things you can keep in mind and try out when you feel a cold or a headache coming on, or if you are looking for relief from joint pain:

Cinnamon & Honey
Taken daily in a tea form, or when added to hot food like oatmeal, these foods will combine to have an antimicrobial effect in the body (as would a tablespoon of raw honey on its own). The cinnamon acts as an expelling agent, and is thought to speed up the work of the honey, and help the body to push out whatever it is fighting.

This combination is also thought to help with weight loss (likely because cinnamon helps to balance blood sugar), and if applied as a paste to joints can help
relieve pain.
*Be sure to use raw, unpasturized honey, otherwise there will be no effect as enzymes have been killed in the cooking process.

Honey & Apple Cider Vinegar
Making a hot drink out of these two, or even a salad dressing (classic combination!) is thought to have an anti-inflammatory effect. That makes this combination great for athletes, and those with joint inflammation. This is also midly detoxifying.

Ginger, Garlic and Spring Onion
Want to kick something quick? Make a tea from these ingredients, chopped up, and allow to steep for 5-10 mintes. Drink this all day long, and benefit from the pungent herbs which will work to gear up your immune system and expel whatever you are fighting. Honey and ginger is a common combination for this reason as well.

Raw Garlic
Everyone knows it drives away vampires, and that is exactly what you can hope it will do with a cold, or parasite! This pungent food will help to move things out of the body more quickly, so munch away, or make a salad dressing with some raw garlic in it.

Rosemary water
Add some leaves from a rosemary stalk to your warm water, and watch as your headache lifts! Pepermint may also have a similar effect, but rosemary can work surprisingly quickly, especially for headaches associated with tiredness or fatigue.

Happy Healthy Healing!

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