Herbs

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris) Herb Profile

Thymus vulgaris is said to be one of the world’s most healthy herbs. It is a delicate herb with a strong aroma that can be used in a variety of dishes.

An evergreen herb with tiny, white, pink and purple flowers, thyme grows quickly in areas that are sunny with well-drained soil.

Three-hundred varieties of thyme are in existence today. Each variety has different uses and different unique flavors. It can be used for cooking, oils, medicine, or even decoration.

Lemon thyme and common thyme are used for cooking. Creeping thyme and Spanish thyme are used in supplements.

The history of thyme dates back as far as ancient Rome and Egypt. It was used by the Egyptians as part of the mummification process.

The Romans used it to give to soldiers as a sign of bravery and respect as well as consuming before meals.

The Latin word for thyme, thymus, means courage and strength. Giving the herb to soldiers carried on as a tradition until the Middle Ages.

After that, people in England began using it as a cooking spice.

Health Benefits of Thymus vulgaris (Thyme)

Remaining influential throughout the years, thymus vulgaris has a rich profile of various vitamins, minerals, and nutrient compounds.

It is a source of calcium, iron, fiber, and manganese as well as Vitamins A, B6, and C.

Listed below are a variety of other wonderful health benefits you can gain by using this herb.

1. Antioxidant Properties

Apigenin, luteolin, saponins, and tannins are antioxidants that thymus vulgaris contains.

These compounds will neutralize free radicals before they cause oxidative stress and other harm to your body. [R]

Iron is often taken along with thyme to keep balance and reduce risks of oxidative stress.

2. Repels Bugs Safely

Thyme oil is a repellant for mosquitoes and other pesky insects. Not only does it repel bugs, but it is completely safe because it has no harmful chemicals.

In addition to repelling mosquitoes, it repels certain types of flies, hornworms, cabbage loopers, and cabbage maggots.

3. Resistance of Harmful Organisms

Thymus vulgaris contains chemical compounds such as carvacrol and thymol that resist harmful organisms.

Fungal balance is believed to be promoted by thyme.

Some evidence also suggests that the compounds found in it are helpful in dealing with harmful organisms that are aggressive. [R][R]

4. Mood Booster

Daily consumption of this powerful herb can enhance your mood by influencing neurotransmitters that control chemicals in the brain.

There is a compound found in thyme oil that has been proven to positively affect dopamine and serotonin levels. The herb must be consumed for seven days in order to reap the benefits of enhanced moods.

5. Preserves Food

Since the herb is resistant to harmful organisms, it can preserve food and increase shelf life. Large scale food producers have observed this effect and used it to keep food safe.

Not only does thymus vulgaris have a wonderful taste, it prevents food poisoning by fighting harmful organisms that spoil food.

6. Oral Health Enhancement

This herb protects oral health by targeting harmful organisms that attack the mouth. Because of this, bad breath and gingivitis can be prevented.

Since thyme works as an antiseptic, mouth sores and ulcers are prevented from becoming infected. If infection occurs, thyme oil can fight it. [R]

7. Respiratory Health

Respiratory health in all seasons is supported by using thymus vulgaris.

Medical studies demonstrate that thyme can relax the air passages which would promote and maintain optimal lung health.

Thyme also alleviates coughing which can help you to get more rest at night if you have a cold.

8. Heart Health

Your blood pressure and cholesterol levels must be healthy to maintain good heart health.

The nutrients in thyme will support healthy cholesterol levels and normal blood pressure.

The herb can reduce your heart rate when it is too high which helps keep the body from stress.

9. Healthy Skin

Studies indicate that thymus vulgaris can maintain skin health. For years, nurses put thyme into bandages they used to wrap patients’ wounds because they knew thyme had healing properties for wounds. [R]

Thyme’s disinfecting power is gentle which means it will not cause side effects with its use.

10. Healthy Hair

Thyme oil aids hair growth and aids with various hair problems. Hair growth can be stimulated because the herb improves blood circulation to the scalp.

Thyme essential oil makes the hair healthier and shiny. If your hair is thinning, or even if you have lost a great deal of hair, thyme can thicken hair and restore what has been lost.

The antibacterial properties of this herb will cleanse the scalp, thereby, treating dandruff flakes that accumulate in the scalp. It is often used as an ingredient in anti-dandruff shampoos. [R]

You must be aware that there are two varieties of thymus vulgaris. One is red while the other is white.

Overuse of the red variety can cause skin irritation. More use of the white variety is recommended. [R]

11. Bone Health

As an excellent source of Vitamin K, iron, calcium, and manganese, thymus vulgaris promotes proper bone growth and development.

Since this herb plays a vital role in maintaining bone health, the risk of bone disorders and diseases is reduced.

Bone breakdown is combatted which will keep your bones from becoming brittle as you age.

12. Promotes Healthy Blood Cells

Iron is essential for healthy blood cells. It also gives energy. Often, iron deficiency causes chronic fatigue. This herb is a great source of iron providing 20% of the daily recommended allowance.

Iron deficiency can result in anemia and other issues. Having this herb in your diet maintains healthy blood cells which prevent iron deficiency.

13. Diuretic Properties

Thyme oil has properties that aid the body with ridding itself of excess salts and toxins by increasing urination.

Not only are these diuretic properties helpful for lowering blood pressure and promoting weight loss, but they are also good for preventing renal failure.

14. Promotes Sound Sleep

Many people do not get the recommended amount of sleep needed to function healthily which is approximately 7 to 8 hours per night.

When some do sleep, they often wake up several times throughout the night.

Thyme tea induces sleep and reduces nightmares. The calming effects of thyme oil can enhance your mood and lessen fatigue.

15. Enhance Cognitive and Mental Health

If you inhale the scent of the fresh leaves, you can stimulate your mind as well as relieve stress and anxiety.

Memory and concentration can also be increased using the same method. You can also add thyme oil to your diffuser or oil burner.

How to Use

Thymus vulgaris can be used in a variety of different ways for you to reap the benefits. Many people use it in oils, seasonings, and tea.

The following are some ways to use this wonderful herb.

1. Tea

Not only is the tea delicious to your taste buds, but it also contains antiviral, antifungal, and preservative properties.

Buying organic prepackaged thyme tea is also an option, but you can make your own using the fresh or dried thyme you purchase for cooking.

If you are using the fresh herb, spread it on a countertop or other safe surface until it is dry. It usually takes a few days. Once it is dried, transfer it to a jar.

When you begin making the tea, you will need about three sprigs for one and one-half cup of boiling water. You can chop sprigs before steeping if you have a tea ball infuser.

Simply place the sprigs in a teacup, pour the boiling water over it. Let it steep for about five minutes. Remove the sprigs before drinking.

Although thyme tea tastes great, you can add lemon, ginger, or honey depending upon your personal preferences.

You can infuse the tea with different fruits. Add apples or peaches to cold thyme tea for additional flavor.

2. Herbal Butter

Adding homegrown thyme to butter will enhance buttery flavor. Meats, vegetables, and pasta will be livened up when cooked and prepared with this flavorful herb.

Additionally, thyme garlic butter has a wonderful flavor to add to your foods.

3. Lemon Thyme Salt

Flavor can be added to roasted vegetables or fish dishes by using lemon thyme salt.  What a healthy way to add flavor to your food. This recipe will not raise your blood pressure.

4. Soups and Sauces

Thyme can be paired with citrus, garlic, cream, peppercorn, butter, olive oil, and Dijon mustard.

When making soups, the herb can be mixed with potatoes, vegetables, mushrooms, chicken, and leafy greens. Using it in soups and sauces gives an additional flavor that no one could refuse.

5. Bread and Pastas

Drizzle thyme-infused oil or vinegar on your homemade bread. You can also mix the herb into the dough. Add the herb to your pasta to enhance taste and flavor.

Many people recommend French bread with thyme or garlic thyme focaccia.

6. Salads and Salad Dressings

Many people do not always think of using this herb in salads and salad dressing, but it can make a salad more robust with flavor.

Fresh or dried thymus vulgaris works well in most salads. Some salads that are great with it are chicken salad, pea salad, and apple and spinach salad.

7. Desserts

This herb works well in many savory dishes, but it can lend great fragrance and flavor to desserts too. Many cookies and cakes can have an addition of thyme to enhance aroma and taste.

Figs and other fruit desserts work well with it as well. Some people have reported that using the herb in lemon cake brings amazing results.

Using it to enhance sweet treats is not an idea that people normally entertain, but it has been proven effective.

8. To Fight Mucus and Ease Congestion

Thyme has been known for its use as an expectorant, reducing mucus, and relieving congestion. Acting as an antitussive, thyme relieves coughing spasms. [R]

Pour boiling water into a heatproof pan. Stir in two teaspoons of fresh or dried herb. You can even stir in oil if you wish.

Lean over the pan and breathe in the vapors for about ten minutes.

9. Improve Oral Health

If you are looking for a natural alternative to improve oral health, this is what you need.

The oil can be used to treat tooth decay, gingivitis, bad breath, and plaque due to its antibacterial and antiseptic properties. [R]

If you will read the ingredients on most mouthwashes, you will find that thymol, an active component in thyme oil, is a primary ingredient in many of them.

10. Scalp Treatment

Massaging the oil into your scalp can kill fungi and bacteria that contribute to scalp conditions such as dandruff.

Impurities are removed, hair follicles cleared, and the scalp is stimulated by the use of thyme oil on your scalp. As a result, hair growth will increase.

11. Skin Treatment

The herb can be used to fight eczema, acne, and inflammation. Signs of aging can be decreased as well because it has antioxidant properties.

Because thyme also has antiseptic properties, it can treat minor cuts, scrapes, and wounds.  The oil can be applied to the affected area using a cotton ball. [R]

Caution/Side Effects

As with any herb or supplement, there are certain precautions that must be taken.

1. Pregnant Women/Breastfeeding Mothers/Children

Thymus vulgaris should be used in small amounts by children, breastfeeding mothers, or pregnant women.

There is not enough research available to indicate if thyme is safe when used in excessive amounts in these cases.

In some cultures, thyme tea is commonly used to induce labor; and in some instances, to perform abortions.

2. Surgery and Bleeding Disorders

A possibility exists that thyme could slow the blood clotting process. The risks of bleeding can be increased if you are having surgery, or if you have a bleeding disorder. [R]

Stop taking this herb at least two weeks before a scheduled surgery. Always consult your physician in these cases.

3. Allergies

If you are allergic to oregano or the Lamiaceae species, you could also be allergic to thyme. It is strongly recommended not to use thyme in these cases.

4. Hormone-Sensitive Conditions

Thyme can act like estrogen to the body. If you have hormone-sensitive conditions such as breast cancer, uterine cancer, endometriosis, fibroid tumors, or ovarian cancer, you should not use thyme. [R][R]

5. Drug Interactions

Since there is a moderate risk of thyme slowing the blood clotting process, it is strongly recommended that you avoid taking it along with medications such as Aspirin, Plavix, ibuprofen, naproxen, and others.

Where to Buy

Both fresh and dried thymus vulgaris is available in most supermarkets or health food stores.

The essential oil is also available in most health food stores and on Amazon.

If you wish to purchase thyme online, you can order it from Amazon, or The Growers Exchange. Thyme is available online in its dry form, essential oil, or tea.

Basil (Ocimum basilicum) Herb Profile

Basil can be used in a variety of creative ways in order to make use of its unique health benefits. With a Latin name of Ocimum basilicum, basil has been in use medicinally for ages.

The herb is said to have great healing power, and it is easy to grow indoors. It is as easy to use as it is to grow. Basil is believed to be one of the most important medicinal herbs.

It is simple to use. An aromatic herb belonging to the mint family, basil adds flavor to a variety of recipes.

The parts used are mainly the leaves and the flowering tops, though the seeds have been popular in Asian cuisine in the past.

Ocimum basilicum itself, when fresh, can be kept for limited amounts of time in the fridge as long as it is in a plastic bag.

To freeze it, blanching in boiling water is first needed. Neither method of preservation would do significant damage to the health benefits.

The most common way to use basil is its fresh leaves at the end of cooking.

Adding it at the last minute is normal. This is because cooking the herb results in a different, more bitter flavor than the known flavor that comes with the raw leaves.

Basil Health Benefits

Since Ocimum basilicum is one of the most important medicinal herbs, it has numerous benefits.

These benefits extend into various areas of your health. The following are some of the benefits of using basil. [R] 

1. Great for Brain Function

With relevant problems such as cognitive decline affecting millions, especially the elderly, having an option to counter it is a definite help.

Studies have shown that by incorporating this herb into your daily diet, your brain function will increase. Preventing cognitive decline and degradation is one of the helpful side effects of the basil herb. [R]

It is such an easy herb to add to any meal, that it can easily take the place of its pharmaceutical equivalents. The healing properties contained inside of basil are what help it give a person the necessary preventative measures.

Mental reflexes are particularly important when it comes to eating certain foods to balance them.

Manganese, which is present in fair amounts in basil leaves, increases the capacity of sending electronic transmitter activity from the body to the brain.

The minerals such as manganese are what promote good mental reflexes. In addition, elements such as copper, which are found in the herb, can have great effects.

Copper, in the quantities found in basil leaves, help to stimulate the mind. It is said that your diet is just as important as performing mental exercises.

Adding basil to your daily diet, which is possible due to its versatility, greatly enhances the functionality of the brain.

Another element found in the basil herb is Glycosylceramides metabolism. This has a direct link to the reflexes that the brain needs to function properly.

These Glycosylceramides can actually serve to act as a sort of preventative measure—a protective shield—that surrounds the brain.

This means that not only will the minerals and nutrients inside of Ocimum basilicum actually prevent the effects of mental deterioration, but it has things set in place that will help protect the mind from anything already hurting it.

2. Natural Aphrodisiac

The aroma alone of basil has shown to be enough to increase both libido and arousal. This is due to the immediate increase in blood flow, energy levels, and the reduction of inflammation. [R]

3. Protects Against Diabetes Development

Basil reduces blood glucose level and inflammation which protects against the development of diabetes. Diabetes patients are at a higher risk of developing high cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

Basil oil can lower these levels which present a more ideal situation for diabetics and those with other metabolic issues. [R] 

4. Aids Metabolism

The large quantity of Manganese found in basil helps the body release the enzymes it needs to benefit the metabolization of amino acids and carbohydrates.

This Manganese also helps the body to metabolize any of the vitamins that are related to glucose. [R]

5. Improves Digestion

Ocimum basilicum improves digestion by balancing acid and restoring the body’s normal PH level.

Healthy bacteria in the gut can be maintained by basil while harmful bacteria are decreased. Bloating, water retention, cramping, and acid reflux are reduced.

Basil also rids the body of harmful stomach worms and parasites. [R]

6. Regulates Blood Sugar

Balancing the glucose level is key to better health. Basil can help you achieve that goal.

Using basil as a seasoning for your food, drinking the tea, or using the oil in your water can regulate your blood sugar levels. [R]

7. Relieves Headaches

Since basil has analgesic and muscle relaxing properties, it can relieve a tension headache. [R]

A tablespoon of dried basil leaves, a handful of fresh leaves, or oil put in three cups of boiling water can bring quick relief. You can also massage a few drops of essential oil into your temples. 

8. Antioxidants that Help Fight Disease

One of the herb’s greatest feats is its ability to harness its antioxidants and fight off disease in the human body. [R]

At the same time that the minerals within it protect a person’s DNA structure and cells, it can actually help fight most of the free radical damage. This is due to the two flavonoid antioxidants held by the herb.

Orientin and vicinage, both water-soluble, serve to help prevent any harm directed to the white blood cells of the body. The white blood cells are key for preventing illnesses through the immune system.

The antioxidants help protect the body from sickness, as well as maintaining the cellular structures containing DNA.

Chromosomes are not altered by the antioxidant properties in basil which is important for the prevention of cancer. Toxins in food, radiation, and pollution can cause oxidative stress. Basil alleviates these problems. [R]

9. Thwarts the Growth of Cancerous Cells

Many of the aforementioned antioxidants that can be found in basil serve to keep any of the body’s chromosomes from being altered by outside forces.

It is these alterations that promote cell mutations that ultimately result in an increase of cancerous cells.

Repetitive mutations are what cause cancer, and so basil can prevent any of the oxidative stress that occurs within the cells in each bodily system.

This means that the toxins found in the body will be flushed out by the antioxidants in this herb, and cancerous cells can be slowed down. [R]

10. Antimicrobial

Basil contains microbial properties that effectively fight viruses. This will give you added protection against yeast and mold along with protection from skin infections and candida.

Basil essential oils protect you from what is viral as well as bacterial. [R][R] 

11. Anti-Aging

It can also slow the effects of aging through its capacity of fighting off oxidative stress. It is the free radical damage to the skin that can make a person feel and look older.

The antioxidants found in basil help combat this and act as a sort of preventative measure.

12. Maintains Bone Health

Women tend to lose bone density as they age which leads to osteoporosis leading to bone injuries and other physical conditions.

Basil is a great source of Vitamin K, which helps absorb the calcium needed to maintain bone health. [R] 

13. Anti-inflammatory

Due to its excessive amounts of essential oils, basil is great for combatting inflammation.

Eugenol, Linalool, and citronellol are all essential oils that inhibit enzymes while helping to stop the spread of inflammation that is the cause of diseases like rheumatoid arthritis. [R]

They also have the capacity to target swelling directly and can help soothe it.

14. Antibacterial

Basil provides protection against harmful bacteria. Studies have shown that its extract inhibits the resistant strains of bacteria.

In a case study, the oil was used against a strain of E-coli. Basil was effective against this strain of bacteria. [R]

15. Helps to Combat Stress

The basil herb is known to contain certain compounds, including adaptogens. It is these compounds that serve to help the physical and emotional stress on the body lessen. [R]

Balance is a large part of what these adaptogens found in basil leaves serve to keep. This balanced functionality is meant to be kept even during the most stressful of situations, such as test-taking or a doctor’s appointment.

Hormone levels balance themselves out through the aid of the adaptogens, and so basil is a great herb to help fight any physical or mental stress.

16. Manages Arthritis

Basil contains beta-caryophyllene which are anti-inflammatory chemicals that soothe burning sensations in the joints. Effective pain management for inflammatory issues is possible with this herb. [R]

17. Manages Epilepsy

The extract from basil has been known to reduce brain spasmodic activity. Eugenol in basil leaves benefits the nervous system. Both factors lead to the effective management of epilepsy.

18. Post Menstrual Syndrome

Many women experience painful periods. Cramps, depression, and fatigue can seem merciless at times.

Basil contains manganese that relieves the symptoms of post menstrual syndrome by balancing the hormones, thereby, relieving stress and fatigue. [R]

19. Healthy Eyes

Basil contains beta-carotene, an essential compound that prevents muscle deterioration. It also contains Vitamin A and Ascorbic Acid which is said to cure dry eye and Stargardt’s Disease.  [R]

20. Fights Depression

By positively impacting the brain function in the adrenal cortex, depression is directly targeted. This means that the compounds within the basil help to fight off depression.

21. Supports Liver Function

When the liver is not functioning properly, a great amount of toxins builds up in the body.

The production of detoxifying enzymes caused by the nutrients in basil promotes a reduction of fat buildup in the liver, meaning that there would be less risk for disease.

Detoxifying enzymes help the liver to do its job properly, keeping it healthy. [R]

22. Cardiovascular Health

The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties in basil relax the muscles that control blood vessel function to contract and relax. Healthy blood pressure is promoted. Inflammation that causes heart disease is reduced.

Basil prevents dangerous platelet aggregation which is the clumping together of blood platelets that could form a clot. When a clot forms in the arteries, cardiac arrest is the most likely result.

23. Eases Congestion

Breathing in steam has been a proven way to reduce congestion. Adding this potent herb to the steaming water can enhance the effects of decongestion.

Basil has natural antihistamine and analgesic properties that will have you feeling better quickly.

24. Lowers Blood Pressure

Many people have high blood pressure due to poor diet and lack of exercise. Basil has been proven to lower blood pressure for a brief period. [R]

You can drink basil tea, or add a few drops of the oil to your water.

25. Source of Energy

Copper can be found in basil. Because copper is a vital producer of adenosine triphosphate, the effects of exhaustion and fatigue are eliminated.

Using the herb in smoothies is said to be a great way to maintain high energy levels. 

How to Use

A variety of ways to use basil are available. It can be used to season food, or, it can be used as a health supplement. The following are ways you can use basil.

1. Herbal Tea Infusion

The best way to make basil tea is either from the dried herb or from the leaf. To prepare it from the dried herb, the task is essentially just to pick what to put with the basil into a teabag. Little to no preparation is required.

To make a tea from fresh leaves, which may allow for more minerals than the pre-dried alternative, the process is simple. First, the basil leaves should be selected to find the freshest ones possible.

The plant and cuttings should be kept at room temperature, with the stems and roots evenly moist for storage. Storing fresh flowers should be the mindset when thinking about basil leaves.

Basically, the desire is to cut the leaves as finely as possible, for the flavor and nutrients to draw out quickly. Snipping them with scissors away from the plant is a good idea.

The typical ratio for a pot of tea would be 2 tablespoons of chopped basil for every 1 cup of boiling water.

The chopped basil should be put at the bottom of the teapot with the boiling water being slowly poured over it. The liquid should be covered with a lid.

For the most efficient vitamin, mineral, and taste output, a steeping time of 7-10 minutes is generally recommended. These pieces can be a great combination when used with lemon zest, turmeric, or marshmallow root.

The health benefits in these other three components balance out perfectly with the ones not found in basil. They also complement the taste.

2. Basil Essential Oil

Your own essential oil can be made from a homegrown plant in which you can reap many health benefits.

Basil leaves can be infused into a carrier oil such as olive or jojoba for three to six weeks.

Once the essential oil is ready for use, you can apply to the oil to insect bites, rub into sore muscles, or give a massage.

3. Herbal Butter

Like other herbs, basil can be used in butter as a delicious addition to your grilled meats, bread, potatoes, or pasta. Making your own organic butter can cut the cost in your food budget.

Combine garlic and some basil leaves in a good processor. Pulse until finely chopped.

Add in some lemon juice and a little salt. Place some butter into the mixture and process until smooth.

4. Vinegar or Oil Infusions

By creating a vinegar or oil infusion, the herb can be used well for its nutrients. To the fullest extent, its health benefits will be drawn out of the herb.

A vinegar or oil infusion is one of the easiest and most efficient ways to store excess leaves. The creation of a basil vinegar can be done without any fancy equipment.

It also has been known to help with the ability to incorporate the power food into any meal.

Basil vinegar can be used in recipes requiring the use of vinegar. The oil can be used for a variety of recipes including vegetables and bread.

5. Salad and Sandwiches

Basil’s leafy nature as an ingredient makes it a perfect addition to any salad. From a basil salad to an additive in a Caesar or Greek salad, the leaf is versatile.

The numerous health benefits contained within the basil leaf — including a variety of minerals — make it healthy. It is a light, fresh, and tasty leaf, which makes it essential to the fridge of a health guru.

The fresh leaves are wonderful chopped up with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and other salad ingredients. It can also be added to any cheeses that you plan to use with your salads.

Sandwiches can also have the added flavor of basil. The herb can be used on pita bread, flatbread, and wraps. Adding some basil to your sandwich meats is not a bad idea either.

6. Desserts and Drinks

Basil’s peppery flavor can work in sweet dishes. Strawberry basil shortcakes, basil ice cream, or basil sorbet are a few dishes you can use. Two other recipes you can use are strawberry galette and mint basil syrup.

A different flavor can be added to your cocktails with basil. Strawberry and basil margarita, basil and lime vodka cooler, and cucumber and basil vodka are just a few of the drinks you can prepare with this herb. 

7. As an Added Spice

Perhaps one of its most famous uses, basil is the perfect natural additive to replace a fattening spice component.

For ages, it has been used with pesto sauce to create the unique and scrumptious taste that is pasta with pesto sauce.

Ocimum basilicum as an herb can be added to a variety of different meals — from sauces to dips to omelets — to help add a touch of flavor.

Basil is usually added at the very end of the cooking sequence. This is because of the way that it loses some of its flavor potency as soon as it gets cooked too long or heated up.

Adding this spice to every-day recipes such as game-day snacks is one of the best ways to ensure that you get your daily dose of nutrients.

The mineral, vitamin, and electrolyte content make it a superfood. Even ingesting it in such small portions as a spice in a lunch or supper dish means that your health benefit intake will be increased.

It is one way to be sure that you are gaining your necessary nutrients naturally, without the need for medicinal supplements.

8. To Flavor Carbs

Another great and known way to get your daily dose of basil is to cook it into your foods such as bread or pasta. Not to use it as a spice or topping or garnish, but to bake it into your meal.

While it is true that some of the potency of the flavor may be cooked out, that is not usually too much of a problem.

When cooked, Ocimum basilicum tends to grow a slightly more bitter taste. This complements perfectly the soft and sweet taste of the bread or pasta and actually reverts most of the taste to normal.

Any lost nutrients are sucked up by the ingredients in the carbohydrate formula, meaning that an extra kick of nutrients is granted.

This is an easy way to get children to eat the leafy vegetable. It also allows them to get the minerals, vitamins, and natural chemical compounds that go along with it.

9. Dressings and Marinades

Fresh basil can be added to salad dressings or marinade sauces for extra flavor.

Available in most supermarkets, fresh basil makes a tasty addition to your salad dressings, especially if you are tired of the same dressings or sauces.

10. Natural Body Deodorizer

Toxic chemicals are in many deodorants that you purchase in various stores. If you are looking for a more natural alternative to avoiding displeasing body odor, basil oil can be used as a deodorizer.

11. Added to Bath

Basil oil or leaves can be added to your bath. Relieving anxiety is one of the benefits that come from using the herb. A nice relaxing bath will be just what you need.

Adding Epsom or Himalayan Pink Salt to the bath is a great idea. The antiseptic properties of Ocimum basilicum will keep your skin free from acne and other infections.

Side Effects/ Caution

Like any other herb, precautions should be taken concerning the use of basil. Certain medications could cause interactions with basil, and some people might have allergies to basil.

The following are some precautions you should take.

1. Prolonged Use May Increase Risk of Liver Cancer

Basil is a relatively safe herb as far as most go. It is safe when ingested, as food or as medicine, unless the medicine is used over extended periods of time.

The herb contains estragole, which means that prolonged use in medicinal forms may increase the risk of liver cancer. [R]

2. Pregnant Women/Breastfeeding Mothers/Children

Basil is most likely safe in food amounts for pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers, and children. Larger medicinal amounts could be unsafe.

Ocimum basilicum has been known to cause liver cancer in mice because it has a chemical compound called estragole.

3. Bleeding Disorders and Surgery

The extracts and oils can slow blood clotting and increase bleeding. People with bleeding disorders should not use basil.

If you have a scheduled surgery, you should stop taking basil at least two weeks before your procedure. Inform your doctor that you are taking basil if you are having surgery.

4. Low Blood Pressure

The extracts from the basil plant have the capacity to lower blood pressure. [R]

It would be wise for those with low blood pressure to be careful when ingesting copious amounts of basil, especially when combined with other foods.

As always, large amounts of any one food item has the capacity to do damage. However, this herb is generally safe when ingested in moderate and sparing amounts.

5. Drug Interaction

Some evidence exists that indicates drug interactions with basil. People who take medication for diabetes, high blood pressure, or cholesterol should avoid using basil. 

Where to Buy?

Basil, for the most part, can be found year-round in any supermarket or grocery store. It can be found either in its leaf form, in pre-made tea packages, in its dried bits form, or its ground herb form.

Even with its seasonal sprouting, there is almost always an abundance of the product, making its addition to a daily diet easy.

If you wish to order online, Amazon and The Growers Exchange have the dried herb, supplements, and tea available.

Oregano (Origanum vulgare) Herb Profile

Oregano or oreganos as some call it, is a perennial herb that has many benefits. The plant is approximately 50 cm tall, and its purple leaves are 2 to 3 cm long. Its scientific name is Origanum vulgare.

For thousands of years, oregano has been proven valuable in both medicinal treatment and culinary use.

It is native to the Mediterranean area, and it is closely related to mint. Its genus is in the same family as mentha.

The part of the plant that is used most is the leaves. Oregano is unusual because it has a better flavor and aroma when it is dried rather than when the leaves are fresh.

Its unique and pleasant smell is from carvacrol, ocimene, pinene, limonene, caryophyllene, and thymol.

Throughout the years, oregano has developed a popular following. From Australia to Egypt, it serves as an effective treatment for many ailments as it contains antibacterial and antioxidant properties.

Origanum vulgare has many potent ingredients which have been deeply studied. Since it is so potent, it must always be diluted.

This herb is used to flavor many foods such as pizza, vegetables, soups, salads, pasta, and sauces.

Oregano Health Benefits

Listed below are a variety of health benefits that come from oregano.

1. Antibacterial Properties

Due to thymol and carvacrol, Origanum vulgare compounds can defend the immune system against harmful bacteria. Some of the bacteria include that which affects the gut, the skin, and other areas of the body.

Since oregano is a slightly stimulating agent, it can increase white blood cell production and speed up the metabolism. This results in a more rapid recovery from various illnesses. [R]

The essential oils contained in Origanum vulgare are effective against 41 strains of Listeria monocytogenes, a known food pathogen.

Some medical teams have reported oregano as a possible source of protection against MRSA, the hospital superbug. [R]

2. Improves Immunity

Rosmarinic acid and thymol, components of oregano, have powerful antioxidant properties. Oxidative stress can be reduced in the body by using this herb.

Free radicals are destructive products that come from cellular metabolism that can cause cancer and chronic illnesses. Using oregano with your meals can keep your body safe from these dangers. [R]

Oregano has been used to treat headaches, sore throat, allergies, sinus infections, and colds. These irritating symptoms can lead to other serious illnesses.

Using this herb can keep you well which prevents you from having to make numerous doctor visits and take synthetic medications.

3. Heart Health Improvement

Origanum vulgare is a natural form of omega-3 fatty acids. These acids rebalance cholesterol levels and reduce cardiovascular system inflammation which will prevent heart attacks and strokes.

Adding oregano to your diet or using it as an essential oil can protect and maintain heart health. [R]

4. Digestion Aid

Packed with fiber, oregano can have a positive impact on your digestive system. Fiber in your diet is vital to a healthy digestive system.

Peristaltic motion is stimulated by fiber, and gut health is increased and maintain causing the food you eat to give you more benefits. [R]

Protecting against intestinal parasites and bloating, your digestive health is further boosted with the use of oregano with its fiber qualities.

Diarrhea and constipation are prevented which balances the digestive system.

In addition to these benefits, oregano is a preventative treatment for stomach flu since it contains properties that boost your immunity. [R]

5. Improves Bone Health

Manganese, iron, and calcium are needed in our bodies, and as we get older, we tend to lose certain levels of these minerals. The negative result of this is that our bones can become weaker.

Oregano has significant amounts of manganese, iron, and calcium. Having it in our diet can prevent osteoporosis which is one of the effects of losing minerals as you age. [R]

6. Rids the Body of Toxins

In addition to being rich in manganese, iron, and calcium, oregano is rich in Vitamin K. These vitamins and minerals are essential to detoxifying the body.

Origanum vulgare enhances liver function and speeds up the process of eliminating toxins. One teaspoon can give you up to 8% of the Vitamin K you need in one day. [R]

7. Protection from Cancer

Medical research has suggested that oregano demonstrates anti-cancer activity. Some scientists have stated that the Origanum majorana can slow and prevent the progression of breast cancer.

Indian physicians found oregano to be effective against colorectal cancer. Other cancers that oregano has been effective against are leukemia and brain cancer. [R][R]

The herb has been proven to have anti-mutagenic effects. Genetic material is altered through a mutagen, such as DNA, which leads to cancer.

Oregano suppresses the mutagens. Carvacrol, which is in oregano, is said to help protect delicate tissue, such as kidney tissue, from toxicity. [R]

8. Manage Type 2 Diabetes

Origanum vulgare contains compounds that can help manage type 2 diabetes. Some studies have indicated that the management of type 2 diabetes through oregano has been as effective as medication.

Experts have claimed that oregano safely lowers the blood sugar. [R]

9. Relief from Menstrual Cramps

Women can experience menstrual cramps in the legs, back, and stomach. Because oregano has pain-relieving properties, it can relieve menstrual cramps.

Some health experts recommend chewing the leaves when experiencing cramps. Oregano has been said to relieve menopausal symptoms and prevent the early onset of menopause.

10. Helps with Acne

Oregano is helpful with acne and other skin ailments because of its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Experts recommend that you dilute the oil before use since the phenol content can cause issues for sensitive skin.

One teaspoon of aloe vera gel along with 2 to 3 drops of oregano should be combined and applied to problem areas with a cotton ball. Avoid areas where the skin is broken. [R]

11. Oral Health

Bacteria, bad breath, plaque, toothaches, and even periodontal disease can be alleviated through oregano. One drop of oregano should be added to your toothpaste.

Another option is to combine 1 to 2 drops of oregano with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, then, swish the contents in your mouth.

How to Use

There are numerous ways to prepare oregano for use to take advantage of the variety of health benefits it offers.

Oregano can be applied to various areas of the body to treat certain types of infection. It can also be mixed with water and coconut oil to be used as a natural antibiotic.

For sinus infections, it can be diluted in water to drink. Origanum vulgare can be used as a spice and applied to various foods and eaten.

The following are some detailed preparations and uses for this medicinal herb.

1. Barbecued and Grilled Meats

Fresh or dried oregano can be applied directly to meats as they are being grilled or barbecued. Animal proteins can produce free radicals as they are being cooked.

Not only will oregano buffer these negative effects, but it will also improve the flavor of the meat.

When using oregano with meats, it is important to understand the difference between fresh and dried. The type of oregano you use on your meats will depend upon the flavor you prefer.

The flavor of most herbs intensifies as they are dried. When using oregano, the flavor is more bitter when it is dry.

The fresh leaves have a less bitter flavor. If you use too much of the dried oregano, you could have a bitter flavor when eating your grilled meats.

Keep in mind that other herbs or spices that you add can make flavor alterations as well.

2. Salads

Both fresh and dried can be used in various salads. It is recommended that salt and pepper be put with one teaspoon of dried oregano in some salads.

Dried oregano works well with tomatoes and various types of cheeses along with olive oil.

If fresh oregano is being used in a salad, it is recommended that plenty of green vegetables be used as well as salt and pepper.

Olives and olive oil work well with fresh oregano too. If you love meat in your salad, grilled chicken will taste great with the fresh herb.

3. Soups, Stews, and Bone Broths

Dried or fresh oregano can be used in soups, stews, and bone broth. Most herbs should be added at the beginning of the cooking process, but the fresh herb should be added toward the end.

Adding it at this point will prevent the leaves from being overly cooked. Dried oregano can be added earlier in during the process.

4. Essential Oil for Ear, Nose and Throat Infections

When using oregano essential oil in water, place 1 to 3 small drops in your water.

Drinking the right amount of the essential oil in our water can serve as prevention or therapy for respiratory infections and sore throats.

If you are using the essential oil for ear infections, place 1 to 3 drops in your hand and rub it around the outer region of the ear.

5. Essential Oil for Oral Health

When using oregano essential oil to maintain or improve oral health, place 1 to 2 drops of the oil along with a one-half teaspoon of coconut oil in your mouth. Rinse for several minutes before spitting.

Using the essential oil in this manner will decrease the likelihood of cavities and gingivitis. If you already have oral health issues, the use of the oil can improve your condition.

6. Household Cleaner

Many people are concerned about the use of chemical cleaners in their homes. The health of some people has been put at risk due to exposure to chemicals in household cleaner.

You will be relieved to know that oreganos essential oil can be safely combined with water and white vinegar, or, water and hydrogen peroxide to be used for cleaning.

7. Burns, Wounds, Acne, and Warts

For a disinfectant and first aid treatment for burns and wounds, apply a drop of oregano oil with coconut oil, or another carrier oil to the affected area.

Acne and warts can be treated by dipping a Q-tip in oregano oil and applying the Q-tip directly to the acne or warts.

Applying the oil in this manner will reduce both bacteria and inflammation.

8. Hand and Laundry Sanitizer

Many people prefer a more natural method of hand sanitation. Often, good bacteria will be removed with some hand sanitizers.

Ten drops of oregano oil combined with two tablespoons of coconut oil will provide a natural sanitizer for you to rub on your hands.

Adding a few drops of the oil to your clothes while they are in the process of being washed will provide a pleasing aroma to your clothes.

Caution/Side Effects

Since oregano is extremely potent, it is important to be aware of the necessary precautions you should take before use.

1. Allergies/Pregnancy/Breastfeeding

People who are allergic to plants in the Lamiaceae family should not use oregano. A mild to severe reaction could result.

Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should consult a physician before using. Insufficient research is available concerning pregnant and breastfeeding women and the use of Origanum vulgare. [R]

2. Surgery and Bleeding Disorders

If you are facing any type of surgery, or, you have a bleeding disorder, use oreganos cautiously. Bleeding can be increased in these cases.

If you plan on having surgery, this herb should not be used at least two weeks before your procedure.

Inform your doctor that you have been using oreganos to avoid any complications.

3. Drug Interactions

Lithium has been known to interact with this herb. Sometimes, the herb can have the same effects as a diuretic.

The way your body rids itself of lithium can be hindered with the use of oregano resulting in serious side effects.

If you take lithium, it is highly recommended that you consult a physician before using it. It is possible that your lithium dose might need to be changed.

Where to Buy

Oregano in its various forms is not difficult to find. Most supermarkets and health food stores have both fresh and dried forms. The essential oil can be purchased in health food stores as well.

Online stores such as Amazon and Puritan’s Pride carry oregano in dry form and essential oil.

Turmeric (Curcuma longa): An Ancient Healing Spice

A perennial native to South Asia, turmeric has been a staple in worldly cuisines for ages. Its Latin name is Curcuma longa, and it is the plant’s long orange root that produces the familiar yellow spice found in so many Indian dishes.

With its historical roots in Ayurvedic culture, turmeric root is one of the oldest known medicinal herbs.

Between its countless uses and numerous health properties, turmeric is one of those spices and foods that should be a staple in every household.

Its nutritional contents and versatility as food are just two of the reasons why. It is also popular because of its orange-yellow coloring and has been utilized for even beauty purposes.

Not only is the root good for the body nutritionally, but it can have some major benefits to the mind.

Curcuma longa has a unique chemical profile that allows it to be included in a variety of treatments for health issues ranging from cold and flu to circulation problems. [R]

The properties are good for health, sure, but are also what gives it its distinct flavor and undeniable appeal.

It is for those reasons that health gurus can testify that turmeric in all forms can help keep the body healthy and prevent diseases.

Turmeric Benefits

Used for centuries for its healing properties, turmeric root is thought to have many powerful benefits.

1. Full of Nutrients

Curcuma longa possesses numerous nutrients and factors beneficial to health. These are vitamins, minerals, amino acids, natural oils, and phytochemicals. [R]

The phytochemicals alone are what cause the amelioration of bodily functions. These include better functioning cell tissues, organs, and muscles. [R]

The compounds will also help prevent certain diseases due to their health properties that serve to boost the functions and pick up slack where vitamins and minerals may be lacking in the body.

Turmeric contains more than 300 components that are found naturally in the root.

These include, but are not limited to, vitamin C, calcium, fiber, beta-carotene, iron, flavonoids, zinc, niacin, and potassium.

2. Prevents and Treats Cancer

Laboratory studies have shown that curcumin found in Curcuma longa can target cancer cells and kill them. It has anti-cancer effects. [R]

Not only can it kill cancer cells, but the curcumin can actually be used as a preventative measure to stop more from growing. [R]

Lower rates of cancer have been found in countries where more turmeric is ingested on a daily basis.

3. Treats Arthritis and Supports Healthy Joints

Arthritis is a common inflammatory disorder characterized by painful swelling in the joints.

Various studies have shown that curcumin can help treat symptoms of arthritis by keeping the joints from getting swollen and inflamed. [R]

In some cases, curcumin was even more effective than prescription drugs when given to osteoarthritis and RA patients. [R]

4. Natural Anti-Inflammatory Agent

Turmeric contains an anti-inflammatory component called curcumin that helps regular the natural inflammation of the body. [R]

Inflammation is a constant problem in the body, either bringing pain or some form of swelling largely due to the foods that a person consumes.

By helping to prevent inflammation, turmeric can actually be a factor in preventing things like heart disease, obesity, and heart problems. [R] [R]

Turmeric fights inflammation at the molecular level. [R][R][R]

5. Fights off Bacteria

Curcuma longa contains anti-inflammatory and antibacterial components that are beneficial in fighting bacteria and viruses. [R][R]

It also allows for a boost in the immune system (your body’s natural defense against diseases).

The same unique blend of vitamins and nutrients in turmeric target specific areas of the body where the average Western diet is lacking.

Through this, a balance is restored and the capacity to fight off bacteria is heightened.

6. Boosts Stress Tolerance

Turmeric has shown progress through its antioxidants to lower oxidative stress in humans. It can also help to cure mental stress with the way in which its many nutrients work together. [R]

Particularly when used as a tea, the turmeric root can have a calming effect on the brain. [R]

7. Aids Digestion

Turmeric can aid digestion and absorption in the body. Its nutrient formula can help open up passages for the nutrients of other foods to properly be absorbed into the body.

Its work as a detoxifier also helps this process. In addition, metabolism is helped by the influx of natural products found within turmeric’s chemical formula. [R]

Turmeric’s antibodies also provide the base for a way to quell nausea. When taken as a hot tea, the root is perfect for settling the stomach and helping the digestive process run smoothly. [R]

8. Remedy Acid Reflux

While it would be difficult to ingest enough turmeric in a single day to be able to properly treat acid reflux, it does help. [R][R]

Curcuma longa can play a key role in the way acid reflux is treated as curcumin is rapidly metabolized by the liver.

Even in small doses, ingesting turmeric for its extracted curcumin in order to help balance the pH level of your body will work.

There also exists a way to get the full recommended amount of this healing spice, and that lies in supplements.

Organic turmeric extract can be taken and used as a simple way to get the full daily medicinal dose.

9. Treats Hay Fever

Turmeric, in its spice form, has often been used as a medicinal ingredient to treat hay fever. The symptoms that this spice treats include a sore throat, congestion, runny nose, sneezing, wheezing and some headaches. [R]

Turmeric tea is often preferred for treating these symptoms due to its warmth and ability to retain a wholesome dosage.

This spice is excellent as a natural alternative to taking pharmaceutical drugs when hit with a cold or similar.

10. Fights Against Depression

The curcumin contained within turmeric has been tried and tested to help relieve the effects of depression. [R]

Those already taking anti-depressant drugs had seen a decrease in their symptoms when they added turmeric to their steady diet. [R]

11. Treats Stomach Ulcers

Research has shown that the chemical found in turmeric, curcumin, has the potential to treat stomach ulcers. It may be consumed in powdered form — taken 3-4 times daily for 6-8 weeks. [R]

However, it’s recommended that you consult with a health care practitioner before including that much turmeric in your diet.

There are certain groups of people that should not consume turmeric in large doses like that (see side effects/caution).

How to Use

When eating turmeric in its raw form, the curcumin is poorly absorbed into the bloodstream.

The reason this presents somewhat of a challenge for the body is that the chemical compound is not one it is used to.

  • Taking turmeric with black pepper, high in a compound called piperine, enhances curcumin absorption by up to 2000%. [R]
  • By eating Curcuma longa with healthy fats like coconut or avocado oil, it is more easily absorbed into the bloodstream. [R]
  • A study also shows that heating turmeric for up to 10 minutes increases the solubility of curcumin 12 folds, thereby enhancing its absorption by the body. [R]

Here are some ways of incorporating this healthy spice into your diet.

1. Making a Tea

One of the easiest and most effective ways to incorporate turmeric into your diet is through an herbal tea.

By crushing the root, adding other herbs of choice, and steeping the mixture into hot water, a tea can be made. Let it cool before adding a sweetener of choice.

It is effective due to the way that the root is still practically raw when ingested. This means that any and all nutrients will be absorbed to the fullest extent. [R]

In addition, the heat from the tea can help with other conditions as well. It can help aid digestion, not only for settling the stomach but since it will lessen the effects of bloating or gases.

Making a pot of turmeric tea can also be an excellent way to use the root’s anti-inflammatory assets. The heat and facilitated entry into the digestive system will serve to add a bit of a boost to the already-there soothing nature.

During cold and flu season, drinking turmeric tea infusion daily can help fight off infections that might attack the immune system.

Turmeric tea is easy to make, helps soothe the digestive process and any inflammatory problems.

2. As a Spice

Perhaps the most common way to use Curcuma longa is as a spice. It has been used this way for centuries and is often times the main form in which you’ll find turmeric.

Curries, sauces, soups, breads, salads or dips. Turmeric is a spice that can be used in just about anything. Since it does have such a versatile set of nutrients in it, ingesting turmeric in your weekly diet is a must.

It has such a savory taste that it can easily be incorporated into any dish. Not only is using the crushed root as a spice the easiest way to ingest turmeric, but it is one of the most effective.

This ancient healing spice has antibodies and antioxidants that work inside the body to relieve many ailments. [R]

3. As a Paste or Poultice

Turmeric powder combined with castor oil can be a big aid when used topically on the skin any place on the body, which can help with inflammation through the nutrients soaking into the body by way of the skin.

Besides, applying a paste of turmeric and castor oil has the potential to improve one’s complexion.

All of the nutrients soak into the skin and have the capacity to remedy wounds and clear blemishes, including any spots on the body where the sun may have caused damaged or where oil may be built up. [R]

Other methods of preparation:

  • A paste can be mode out of turmeric and manuka honey to remedy cuts and wounds and reduce scarring.
  • Combine aloe vera and turmeric powder to make a soothing paste for sun damaged skin and skin bruises.
  • Reduce inflammation and scaling by applying a turmeric mask or cream on psoriasis-affected skin.
  • Mix together turmeric powder with water and apply to psoriasis-affected skin as a nighttime treatment. Leave on for a couple of minutes before washing off.

It is always important to know which beauty products not to put on our face due to chemicals. The chemical build up in store-bought products can often be harmful to the skin and make it less resistant to the sun’s rays.

By making your own natural turmeric paste, you can avoid this. Doing it at home ensures that everything is natural and organic.

This means that you are able to oversee exactly what is going onto your skin, safe in the knowledge that it is doing far more good than harm.

Placing a poultice or a spread onto the skin can also be great to soothe it. With the nutrients found within turmeric put to work, it can be a great relaxer.

Heat coupled with the minerals and electrolytes can work to soothe a rash or fight off an infection. The antibodies that are present in curcumin are perfect for that.

Infection and inflammation can be easily remedied by using turmeric as the base for your beauty paste.

Side Effects/ Caution

1. Blood Thinning Effects

Since turmeric can be used as a natural blood thinner, it should not be taken if you are on medication that thins the blood. This can cause serious medical issues. [R]

Additionally, when too much is ingested daily alongside other medications/ingredients that have the same properties, problems may arise.

2. pH levels

Especially when combined with certain drugs, pH levels can go out of balance when turmeric is used as a complementary remedy.

As always, check your prescriptions to make sure that they are compatible with the nature of turmeric.

3. Gallbladder Issues

Turmeric may exacerbate gallbladder issues when taken too often or in large amounts.

4. Can Lower Blood Sugar Levels

Curcuma longa can lower blood sugar levels. Those with diabetes are not recommended to add turmeric to their daily diet. [R]

When eaten consistently or in large quantities, turmeric can cause a diabetic’s blood sugar level to drop too low. This can become life-threatening in extreme cases.

5. May Affect Iron Absorption

When taken in large amounts, turmeric may hinder iron absorption.

Where to Buy

Turmeric, like most spices nowadays, can be bought all year. The root may end up being seasonal, depending on your location.

For the most part, turmeric root can be found in local grocery stores or farmer’s market.

Turmeric is also available online in powder form, capsules, and fluid extracts.

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Chive (Allium schoenoprasum) Herb Profile

Chive. As a plant that has long graced the shelves of supermarkets worldwide, it comes as no surprise to hear that the ingredient that has been used in many recipes.

From omelets to breads for ages, chive is one that actually has numerous health benefits.

Known for its distinct taste and for being often times confused with its cousin, garlic, chives are plants that can be added into just about any dinner in order to give it that extra little burst of flavor — and nutrients.

Its scientific name being Allium schoenoprasum, it is native to many parts of North America, Asia, and Europe.

The widespread nature of this plant coupled with its ability to survive practically all seasons and regrow without having to be replanted each year.

Easily planted in any garden or found at any local supermarket, the herb has been used in medicines since medicine was invented. It has also has been used as a garnish for just as long.

With such, it is not difficult to see why chives should, if not be labeled as a staple ingredient. Chive should also be considered a great addition to a consistently well-balanced diet.

Chive Health Benefits

Chive contains many health benefits, some of which are listed below.

1. Vitamins and Minerals

One of the largest and most prominent health benefits of chives is its ability to provide a person with a variety of points filled for their daily requirement of certain vitamins and minerals.

Chives are nutrient-rich plants, serving not only as a small but significant source of energy, but containing also carbohydrates, proteins, and dietary fiber.

Chive has 0 mg of cholesterol and thus is able to be added to any dish. Its vitamins range from folates to thiamin and include niacin, pantothenic acid, pyridoxine, riboflavin, and vitamin A, C, E and K.

In addition to those vitamins, it contains almost overwhelming amounts of potassium and some sodium. Its minerals also have a fine list, including Ca, Cu, Fe, Mg, Mn, P, and Zn.

This makes it have not only a great detoxifying factor but is also great for getting in enough nutrients to result in a proper amount without having to turn to pharmaceuticals.[R][R]

2. Low in Calories

Since chives are particularly low in calories, they can be a great source to turn to for alternative seasoning. A quarter cup of chives would contain just 4 calories, making it a great additive to any meal.

3. Protects Against Cancers

Quercetin and vitamin K, two vitamins found in chives, are superb antioxidants and can work to protect from and prevent cancers in the body. [R][R][R][R]

4. Antioxidants

In addition, these antioxidants (Quercetin and vitamin K) detoxify the body and can help with skin health.

Through the unique combination of minerals and electrolytes found in the plant, skin cells are targeted and strengthened, giving the skin a healthy glow. [R][R]

This is especially helpful in a breakfast setting due to the fact that you would have your entire day for the nutrients to really be processed.

It will also allow them to start working throughout the skin, targeting the cells and helping with acne problems.

5. Anti-inflammatory

The nutrients found in chives are so powerful that they can actually be used as anti-inflammatory preventatives, meaning that they can help with pain and just general swelling. [R][R]

6. Improves Heart Health

Heart health is also helped by enough of the same nutrients, which are easy to acquire considering the condensed package that is the chive plant. [R][R]

7. Fiber

The fiber found in the plant can also be a large factor in reducing nausea and easing the digestive process.

Another reason why it is good as a garnish is that even just that small, concentrated amount of nutrients can help with the digestion of even the largest meals.

8. Bone Health

The vitamin K found in the herb plays an important factor in protecting bone density and increasing function.

As a rule, vitamin K should be one of the most important factors when deliberating what makes up a healthy diet.

It acts to preserve and retain calcium in the bone matrix, and prevents the urinary excretion of this calcium.

In addition, sufficient consumption of this mineral that is ever so present in the chive herb can actually help fight off osteoporosis. [R][R]

9. Digestive Process

Chives can be a great factor in aiding the digestive process. The nutrients in it alongside the subtle taste it can give a meal will serve as great stomach-settlers. [R]

10. Improve Mood

In chives, folate also occurs. This means that not only may it help relieve depression, but any excess of homocysteine that would form in the body would be prevented.

This means that by consuming chives, your mood would automatically improve.

The main problem with having an excess amount of homocysteine, which is an amino acid in your blood that you get from eating meat, is that it can prevent other nutrients and blood from reaching the brain.

Furthermore, it also has the ability to interfere with the making of any serotonin in your brain, which is one of the best feel-good hormones.

Other positive hormones such as dopamine and norepinephrine could also be affected by an excess of homocysteine.

Ultimately, the folate present in chives helps keep a person happy.

These hormones that are known to regulate sleep, appetite, and mood are all aided by the production of the folic acid that comes in chives in a rather concentrated amount. [R]

11. Immune System

The vitamin C found in chives will give that extra little boost to the immune system each time it is ingested. [R]

12. Eye Health

Lutein and zeaxanthin are two carotenoids found in chives that are believed to be good for the health of a person’s eyes. The two of them reduce oxidative stress, which is a big issue in the eyes of many aging people.

They also serve to show the development of cataracts as early as possible. This all means that just by adding chives to their daily diet, a person’s vision and eye health could both very well be boosted. [R][R]

How to Use

1. To Flavor

Chives are perhaps best used as a flavor for dishes such as eggs, omelets, quiches, or dips. Their low-calorie count allows them to be added to any meal in order to give it flavor without hurting the health impact.

In fact, adding chives as a flavoring instead of spices allows for it to actually boost the health quality of a dish.

To make the most out of the health properties of the chives, it is best to add them either raw at the end or add them close to the end of the dish’s cooking time.

This is because chives are really a soft-stemmed herb, and to cook them for too long would be to cook out the flavor and nutrients.

Adding them close to the end of cook time allows them to retain most of their nutrients and flavor.

2. To Garnish

Rather than add them into the actual dish, it could also help to garnish a dish, such as a soup, with chives.

This allows for the raw herb to bring its nutrients to the dish but gives the flexibility of adding it in later, and in the desired quantities.

In addition, it eliminates the risk of over-cooking the herb, which would suck out some of the nutrients.

It also shows the versatility of the plant with the way in which it can be added to things that are either already cooked or dishes that are eaten raw.

3. The Flowers

Rather than sticking with solely the more versatile, well-known part of the plant — the leaves — you could also add its flowers to a dish.

To add them to a salad or something similar would give it all the same health properties as the leaves would.

It would, however, allow for a different texture than the alternative, making the plant just as useful in its whole raw form as when it is cooked into a dish.

The plant only flowers while near the end of its yearly life, usually at the end of summer. That makes the flowers something that cannot be used all the time.

However, if you had a plant in your garden, then you would be able to make new recipes as the summer months progressed.

They also allow for a little bit of color into a dish, since they are usually a purple-like color. This makes a difference in a dish’s aesthetic, which is beneficial when having to decide which health products to put in something like a salad.

4. Insect Repellent

The juice of the chive plant, when applied topically, can be used as a natural option for an insect repellant. Juicing is simple, and can be done using lemon juice as an additive.

The fungicidal properties present in the plant can be used to both repel certain common insects and repel moles.

This juice can either be applied directly onto skin in the same way as you would apply insect repellent spray or be placed in a dish in hopes of keeping insects away in a more distant way.

It is one of the less-common usages of the chive plant but has been shown to be an effective one regardless.

5. With Butter or Cheese

Chives have also been known to be something to incorporate into dairy products such as butter or cheeses. This is because it can help flavor both of the aforementioned items, sure, but also to boost their nutritional properties.

Butter and cheese both contain calories and fats. Chives contain neither.

Being such a nutrient-dense herb, adding chives to dairy products boosts the vitamin and nutrient intake alongside boosting the flavor in a healthy, natural way.

6. An Herbal Vinegar

Chives are also popular among herbal vinegar lovers. The plant’s leaves give off the perfect flavor and the right amount of nutrients to be a great choice for cooking with.

White wine vinegar works best as a base for use with chives or other oniony plants. By soaking the leaves of the chive plant in the white wine vinegar, the flavor will soak out and into the liquid mix.

This not only gives a flavor that can be added to practically any dish in the place of a regular vinegar, but the vitamin C and other health benefits of the chive plant will leak out and into the vinegar.

That means that any dish will have an extra boost of healthy eating just by first making an herbal vinegar from the chive plant or herb.

Side Effects/ Caution

1. Poisonous to Dogs

While completely fine normally, some pets have been known to be poisoned by the plant when ingesting it in large quantities. This is due to how packed the herb is with nutrients. [R]

Dogs, in particular, seem to be susceptible to this.

Due to this, it is best to either be conscious of how much your dog may have access to consuming, or limit the availability for your dog to access the plant.

2. Upset Stomach

Though good for digestion in smaller quantities due to the vitamins in it, too much of the plant can certainly cause an upset stomach.

It could also lead to indigestion. This also happens to be due to the combination of minerals and electrolytes found in the plant’s leaves.

3. Pregnancy or Breastfeeding

While there have been no known cases of hospitalization due to an excess of chives during pregnancy or breastfeeding, it could have effects.

Considering how nutrient-rich the food is, as is the problem with a dog’s ingestion, digestion could be worse in a woman who is in the stages of pregnancy.

It is always better to be safe than sorry, and so women in the breastfeeding or pregnancy stages should limit their intake to small or moderate amounts.

Where to Find?

Chives are a June to July flowering plant that can be found ready for a garden in the early to late spring. Otherwise, it can be found year-round in supermarkets with leaves or in herb-form.

It can also be found online on Amazon.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) Herb Profile

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis). Used in alternative medicine since the time of ancient Greeks, it is a perennial woody herb native to the Mediterranean coastal region.

It has a slim and long stern, with fine needle-like leaves disposed of in a radial section, belonging to the mint family (Lamiaceae).

The color palette of rosemary is based on silver leaves with blue, white, pink or purple flowers. Both its aromatic properties and refined look make it a common find in most spice racks.

Rosemary has different names: Romero (Spanish), polar plant, compass weed, compass plant, dew of the sea, incensier or mi-tieh-hsiang (Chinese).

However, its uses are the same worldwide — harnessing the entire plant (stems, branches, leaves, and flowers).

The aromatic herb is composed of a variety of phenolic acid derivatives, phenolic diterpenes, and oils:

  • Phenolic acid derivatives: Rosmarinic acid, which offers lung protection and helps fight Alzheimer’s, is found in the leaves. It also contains Carnosic acid, which has strong antioxidant properties.
  • Phenolic diterpenes: Rosemary contains Carnosol, a potent antioxidant which protects the liver improves brain function.
  • Essential oil: The essential oil contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties: 1.8-cineole, α-pinene, α-terpineol, camphene, and borneol.

Rosemary Health Benefits

Rosemary contains a plethora of health benefits, some of which are listed below.

1. Brain Function and Protection

The carnosic acid found in rosemary is the primary inhibitor against brain-cell damage.

Its main function is protecting the brain against oxidative stress, one of the leading causes of Alzheimer’s disease, as well as preventing beta-amyloid plaques. [R][R]

Carnosic acid along with rosmarinic acid has been found to protect the brain from tissue damage, by reducing brain swelling and blood clots in rats.

Rosmarinic acid in low doses also helps with various cognitive disorders like dementia or ataxia, by suppressing acetylcholinesterase (AChE). [R][R][R]

A study done on 144 volunteers has proven that memory quality, working memory performance, and increased alertness can be obtained using rosemary essential oil. [R]

Another study trial conducted with the help of 28 elderly subjects demonstrated that memory speed could be improved using low doses (750mg) of rosemary powder. Higher dosage use obtains the contrary results. [R]

2. Antimicrobial Properties

Studies confirm that the growth of multiple strains of bacteria, gram-positive and gram-negative, can be stopped entirely with the help of rosemary extracts. Gram-positive bacteria showed better results.

This is due to the rosmarinic acid and carnosic acid that comes from the plant’s leaves. The most significant results came from its antiviral effects against HIV when used in low doses. [R][R][R]

3. Liver Detoxification

Rosemary has been proven helpful with liver healing, especially in severe cases of cirrhosis, by counteracting the depletion of liver glycogen, which is the liver’s energy storage molecules. [R]

At the same time, it decreases malondialdehyde, one of the liver’s primary source of oxidative stress, and the plasma glutamic-pyruvic transaminase which contributes to liver injury. [R]

4. Skin Care Improvement

Most of the oils and phenolic acids in rosemary have antioxidative properties. It is known that antioxidants are essential in the anti-aging processes and blemish reduction. [R]

A study conducted by Dr. Alice L. Pérez Sánchez has proven that rosemary extract is also helpful against UV-induced skin damage. Rosemary oil has also shown its effectiveness against P. acnes, the bacteria that causes acne. [R][R]

5. Rosemary Against Asthma

Asthma is a common condition nowadays, especially among children in urban areas.

Luckily, a study conducted on 40 patients has proven that rosemary extracts can help reduce asthma symptoms like sputum production (saliva and bronchial mucus), coughing, wheezing, and chest pain. [R]

6. Promotes Weight Loss

So far, 2 studies have proven that liver steatosis and weight gain in rats fed with high-fat diets with the aid of rosemary extracts are 64% lower than that of rats on a “regular” high-fat diet.

Without modifying the food intake, glycemia and cholesterol levels were also limited. [R][R]

7. Antioxidant Properties

In the conditions mentioned earlier, most of the results have been obtained due to rosemary’s antioxidant properties. Rosemary extract is useful in treating many ailments.

The antioxidant properties in crude fresh rosemary extracts were found to be more potent compared with that of antioxidants like ascorbic acid, Trolox, and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT), that are widely used food. [R][R]

8. Digestive Microbiome Improvement

Several studies prove rosemary’s multifunctionality in aiding gastrointestinal (GI) and inflammatory conditions, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis (UC):

  • Decreased infections (rat study with colon infections) [R]
  • Relieves gas [R]
  • Bile discharging [R]
  • Increased bile flow [R]
  • Potentially helps fight gut disease [R]

9. Pain-Relieving Properties

In Eastern European homeopathy, rosemary has been widely used for centuries to ease arthritis pain, treat dysmenorrhea, kidney colic pain, and stomach cramps.

This is not only due to its anti-inflammatory properties but also because it has been proven helpful in treating gastrointestinal issues and lower urinary tract symptoms. [R][R]

10. Antispasmodic Properties

The antispasmodic properties of rosemary help women during their menstrual period. It also helps in reducing involuntary muscle spasm.

One study conducted on guinea pigs has shown that heart spasms (ileum and atria) are reduced with the aid of rosemary oil. [R][R]

11. Cancer- Fighting Properties

Probably the most widely-known condition of the 21st century, cancer, is a very frightening word.

However, naturopathic approaches have been found helpful over the years in combating the various types of cancer. In tests performed, rosemary has proven effective in killing ovarian cancer cells and halting their growth. [R]

A rosemary antioxidant powder and rosmarinic acid were evaluated in the cancer-causing molecules — heterocyclic amines (HCAs) — found in meat.

The results showed that at the higher cooking temperatures, rosemary extracts were capable of reducing mutagenicity in beef patties. [R]

Rosemary has also been used in the complementary treatment of various cancer types, like lung, liver, bladder, cervical, prostate, breast, pancreatic, colon, and blood cancer.

How to Use

Rosemary can be used in many forms, according to one’s needs or pleasure. It is best known as an aromatic herb, pairing perfectly with baked or boiled potatoes.

However, if you wish to benefit from of its medicinal properties, having the tea, tincture, or rosemary oil are the best ways to use it.

1. Rosemary Tea

Even though it is preferable to use fresh leaves, not having rosemary in your backyard garden is not an issue at all.

You can still make tea by adding 1 ½ teaspoon of dried rosemary leaves to a cup of hot water and letting it sit for approximately 3 to 5 minutes.

The result will be a highly aromatic tea, caffeine-free, which you can drink to reduce stress and strain after a hard day’s of work, or deep anxiety.

At the same time, drinking 3 cups per day for at least 3 weeks will help with digestive tract issues and improving the microbiome environment in your stomach and colon.

2. Infusion

Similar to rosemary tea, rosemary infusion can be used for both its aromatherapeutic properties, to relieve stress and anxiety, but also for colds and the flu and to help with respiratory problems.

Use 5 teaspoons of dry rosemary leaves to 1 liter of boiled water. Let it sit for 5 minutes in a wide pan and then place your face over it and cover yourself and the pan with a clean towel.

Try to sit as long as possible and inhale the steam that comes from it. Its effect is to reduce and release the bronchial mucus, easing the cough, and cleaning your airways.

Because rosemary has a calming effect, it is best to try this infusion before you go to bed, ensuring you will have a restful sleep.

3. Tincture

Rosemary tincture gives you the benefit of the tea but packed with a punch. However, it takes longer to make and you have to pay attention to the dosage, as its concentration can lead to unwanted side-effects.

To make rosemary tincture, it is best to use fresh leaves and flowers. There are no exact quantities, but the ground rule is to fill a glass container with them while pressing down the content inside.

When it has been filled, ad pure 85% to 95% alcohol and keep away from direct sunlight for the next 4-6 weeks. It is important to shake the bottle every 3-4 days.

When the period has passed, strain the content and place it in a dark tincture bottle.

The recommended dosage is no more than 2 teaspoons per day — once in the morning and once in the evening.

4. Rosemary Oil

Another way to reap the benefits of rosemary is by making and using the oil. Rosemary oil can be used in the kitchen, or as a complementary aid for various illnesses.

To prepare it, you’ll need about 5 fresh rosemary sprigs, 2 cups extra-virgin olive oil, and a glass jar. Completely immerse the herb in the jar with the olive oil, ensuring no part is exposed to air.

Cover the jar tightly and place it in a warm (or sunny) location for at least 6 weeks. After which you’ll strain the mixture with a clean muslin to separate the oil from the herb.

5. Other Uses

Rosemary oil will give you the Mediterranean feel to any dish you choose, making your pasta unbelievably rich. However, it can also be used for light massages and to relieve muscle tension.

Massaging your scalp daily with rosemary oil has been proven to increase scalp circulation. It also provides nutrients to restore hair root keratin, required for hair growth.

Another area in which rosemary oil has been proven effective is skin care and hair growth.

With its antioxidants and phenolic acids, it is helpful in regenerating the skin’s collagen, thereby counteracting stretch marks.

Caution/Side Effects

As with almost every medicinal plant, rosemary also has multiple side-effects, which should not be taken lightly, especially when using high doses.

1. Fertility Reduction

Tests conducted on adult rats have shown that their reproductive organs became smaller after long-term exposure to rosemary extracts.

In the male subjects, the sperm count, density, and mobility of the cells were reduced. In female rats, a higher percentage of fetal loss has also been observed. [R]

2. May Increase Scalp Itching

Used for hair-loss treatment, even if efficient, a study conducted with 50 permanent bald patients has shown that rosemary oil increased scalp itching. [R]

3. Skin Irritation

This might seem surprising, but rosemary oil and infusions can affect people with sensitive skin instead of helping them. Prolonged exposure can lead to erythema (skin redness) or even dermatitis. [R]

4. Blood Glucose Level Spikes

As helpful as it may be with its anti-inflammatory properties, when it comes to blood glucose levels, rosemary can significantly affect such.

A study conducted on rabbits with induced diabetes showed a spike in blood glucose levels by 55% in just 2 hours. [R]

5. May Induce Convulsions

Even though rosemary is widely known for its calming properties, camphor, one of its components can induce epilepsy-like convulsions. [R]

6. Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Even though rosemary has antispasmodic effects, it is not recommended to use during pregnancies, as in large amount, may induce abortion.

High doses of may also impede implantation of fertilized eggs. It is also not recommended to take while breastfeeding.[R]

Where to Buy

Rosemary can be found on almost every supermarket’s spice rack, health foods stores, or at the farmer’s market.

Buying online in dried form, oil or tincture, from reputable Mediterranean suppliers is also another way of acquiring this powerful herb.

Parsley (Petroselinum crispum) Herb Profile: Health Benefits & More

Parsley. Easily found in just about any supermarket at any time of the year, this herb, scientifically known as Petroselinum crispum, has health benefits that ensure its place as one of the necessary staples for any modern diet.

From smoothies to salads, this versatile leafy green is something that will not only help you maintain a healthy lifestyle but just by consuming it, it will make you feel as though you are a right health guru.

Having originated in the southern parts of Italy, Tunisia, and Algeria, parsley is one of those foods that has become widely-accessible.

Though the plant is not something that most households buy with their weekly grocery list. It is more of a “buy when the recipe calls for it” type of ingredient. That needs to be remedied.

With health properties akin to vitamins currently on the market, parsley is one of the most underrated, transformative herbs there is. The fact that it is something that can be incorporated into so many of our everyday meals.

Whether using the fresh herb or dried spice, knowing parsley’s distinct properties will not only make you healthier, but the knowledge of how it works makes it the perfect ingredient to keep in your kitchen.

Parsley Health Benefits

There are a plethora of health benefits to using parsley, some of which are listed below.

1. Pain Reliever

One of Parsley’s best-known health benefits is as a pain reliever. Vitamin C and its anti-inflammatory nature could make sports injuries more bearable and general pains more tolerable. Parsley also contains a volatile oil called eugenol, that can help dull the pain that is caused by rheumatoid arthritis. [R] [R]

Stomach cramps, nausea, and bloating are also inconvenient realities that can be aided by the ingestion of this abundant plant. It not only relieves some of the struggles with gastrointestinal issues such as indigestion but also helps build up the immune system. [R]

2. Antioxidants and Vitamins

In addition to these medicinal benefits, parsley can also be consumed for its numerous antioxidants and vitamins. Research points to its ability to help protect our cells from free radical damage and keep up our metabolism and general well-being. [R]

When ingesting its leaves, it can be reassuring to hear that they contain not only carbohydrates but also proteins and fats. Its volatile compounds like limonene and myristicin also show how much of a health plant parsley is.

While it just so happens to be a good source of iron and vitamin B6 due to its dark green nature, it also has enough of niacin, folate, zinc, thiamin, riboflavin, and vitamin A, K, and E to make a real impact in your diet. [R] [R]

Its more prominent vitamins include vitamin C, potassium, calcium, sodium, phosphorus, and magnesium. [R] [R]

3. Urinary Tract Infections

While not as popular, there are those who use parsley as an aid for their urinary tract infections. While this mainly goes along as another natural pain reliever, many of the nutrients previously stated have actually been known to help with UTI. [R]

Parsley roots is an ingredient in many prescribed pain reliever drugs. By having parsley on-hand, it can do a lot to facilitate the healing process when faced with such infections or health problems.

4. Liver Detoxification

In fact, liver detoxification is one of the main uses of parsley juice. This is why many hangover cures have been known to include parsley as one of the main ingredients. Not only because of the obvious health benefits but also because it really takes that extra step to help in liver detoxification. It also aids in creating a sense of normalcy the morning after a period of alcohol drinking.

5. Kidney Cleanser

It is often recommended for those who have recently suffered kidney stones. In the form of a smoothie, and when paired with other ingredients such as cucumber and watermelon, parsley can also be used to detoxify the kidneys. This not only helps with, as mentioned, passing kidney stones but supports overall healthy kidney function. [R] [R]

6. Appetite-Inducer

One of the more consistent uses of parsley that can be applied to the average person’s life is its work as an appetite-inducer. It stimulates the glands just enough so that a person gets their appetite back, even after a long period of stress.

Parsley has also been shown to improve digestion in its leaf form due to the breakdown process and the nutrients that are released because of it.

7. Treats and Prevents Iron Deficiency

Especially with vegetarians and vegans, iron deficiency is common. That is why it is so important to note that just two tablespoons of parsley provide enough iron to make up 2% of your necessary daily intake. That is one of the reasons why parsley is consistently recommended to those with anemia. [R]

Combine this with all the other vitamins and nutrients that make it the rich and refreshing herb that it is. It is clearly not hard to see how much of an impact just the smallest incorporation of this leafy vegetable could make in your life.

8. Promotes Healthy Bone Health

The abundance of vitamin K that is found in parsley is actually what makes it a great help in bone health. The beta-carotene that can be found is a specific antioxidant that provides anti-aging benefits to those who consume it. The nutrient-packed leaves are what make parsley such a necessary component of a healthy diet. [R]

9. Prevents Cancer

Early studies suggested that there were compounds in parsley that could aid in the resistance of tumor growth. A recent study in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture solidifies the fact that parsley contains powerful and potent cancer-fighting compounds. [R]

First, the antioxidants destroy free radicals before they have the opportunity to damage the cells, then it actually protects the DNA against harm. It also has properties that will inhibit the formation, reproduction, and movement of cancerous cells in the body. [R]

Research is still being done about this, but it just goes to show what a superfood parsley really is.

How To Use

Just as there are many different and distinct ways in which parsley is able to help the body fight off and prevent all different sorts of diseases, there are also numerous ways in which to prepare parsley so to maintain a number of its unique health properties.

1. Salad

The first, and likely the easiest, would be to chop up its leaves in order to use in a salad. Often times mixed with quinoa so as to create a nutritious, filling meal, it allows for the leaves to retain all of their natural health benefits.

It is a well-known fact that raw vegetables include more of their nutrients than they do if they were to be cooked, where it is a commonplace activity for multiple nutrients to be lost in the cooking stages. However, that is not to say that parsley should never be cooked.

In fact, cooking with parsley leaves allows for it to act as part of virtually any meal, from salads to sandwiches to pasta, while keeping its level of iron. This is vital for vegans or vegetarians, who have to consciously search for foods high in iron to maintain their respective lifestyle.

2. Smoothie

Blending the leaves would also be an effective way to reap the health benefits that they provide. It allows for all of the health benefits of parsley to be present while being presented in a convenient smoothie. This is also the best way if you are looking for a fix for any digestive or gastrointestinal issues such as indigestion, cramps or nausea.

It allows for a smooth transition from intake to the stomach, with its mostly-liquid nature eliminating the need for heavy processing or digesting once it enters the body.

3. Juicing

Another way, and perhaps the most efficient way, to fully reap the health benefits that parsley offers is to juice the leaves. This is different than making a smoothie because the product will be a more concentrated version of whatever is put into the smoothie, meaning that less of it would be required for the same quantity of nutrients.

Often times, lemon juice is the best ingredient to aid the juicing process due to the way in which it contrasts the vitamins and minerals that are already in the parsley. This means that the outcome is even more nutrient-rich than before.

Additionally, this is the recommended way to ingest the product when the end goal is primarily liver or kidney flushing due to the liquid base that will target those two areas.

4. A Paste

One health benefit of parsley is that it will promote cell repair and reproduction, as previously mentioned, and can even help prevent cancerous cells from evolving. The other upside to this is that it will also lead to the faster growth of a new layer of skin.

Smoother skin is often the result of this, as parsley contains anti-aging antioxidants. Waiting for these things to happen purely through ingestion is too flippant for some, and so there has been a recent increase in popularity concerning the use of an external method to aid the process.

Often times, you can find creams and face masks in stores that contain parsley in order to achieve the no-wrinkle effect. However, to keep things even more natural, there is always the option of applying the plant directly to the outside of the skin.

By creating a mixture of finely chopped parsley, lemon juice, and honey, it would then be able to be placed upon one’s face in order to fully soak into the skin cells.

5. Tea

Another solution for the treatment of muscle spasms or digestion issues would be by making parsley tea from its herb form. Leaves, roots, or even seeds can be used to brew tea, and its benefits are numerous.

For one thing, it is perfect to settle the stomach and easily remedy the stomach and gastrointestinal issues that parsley has the capacity to help with. Parsley tea is also a quick and reliable answer to urinary tract infection issues or even aid with menstrual flow.

Taken in either of its forms of leaves roots or seed tea, the herbal remedy has many of the same properties as juicing the parsley would have, except in a more subtle manner that makes it perfect for a daily dose rather than a dosage of every second day.

Any of the forms will have the same properties as each other, so it is really a personal choice of preference between the three. Parsley is such a versatile and reliable herb that no matter how it gets prepared, the health benefits will be plentiful.

Caution/Side Effects

As mentioned, parsley juice is both a powerful and potent way to take in your daily dose of nutrients. With such, it’s not recommended to ingest it this way every day.

1. When Juicing

During a juice cleanse, it is only recommended to include a parsley juice around every second day, and in a regular time-frame, parsley juice should be ingested sparingly.

2. Facial Application

When using the parsley, lemon juice, and honey mixture on the face to help the skin cells that reside there, it is important to note that it should not be used daily. Such a face mask can dry out the skin and even, when used for lengthy periods of time, make the face less resistant to the sun. With such, it is a good idea to limit the usage to no more than twice a week.

3. Pregnant Women

Pregnant women should also be wary when ingesting parsley in its raw or medicinal form consistently. This is because the numerous nutrients found in it are so potent that, when coupled with the hormones of pregnancy, parsley could cause serious side effects.

It has been known to act as a method of commencing a woman’s menstrual flow and, in extreme cases, even causing abortions. In some cultures, parsley has a history of being used as a method for natural abortion.

The important thing is just to be conscious of how many vitamins, minerals, and nutrients parsley really has.

Where to Buy

The purchase of parsley is not a difficult thing considering its low price and abundance in local health food stores. While it is more of a summer plant than a winter plant, it can still be found year-round at most supermarkets.

It can also be found in reputable online stores such as Amazon.com, in the forms of Capsules, Dried Herb, and a Tincture.

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