Herbs for Life

5 04 2008

I just want to make a disclaimer before I start this blog. I’m not a doctor or a professional of any kind. Always check with your doctor before starting any kind of new program. And most of all don’t go off any medications without the help of your doctor.

 I call myself an herbal apprentice. Last June of 2007, I had an overwhelming desire to learn more about natural medicine. I knew that my priest and his family had studied natural medicine for a decade. So I asked my priest’s wife if she would lend me some books from her own personal herbal library. She was very happy to do that for me. I also went to our public library to see what they had on herbal studies. Little did I know how important this journey would become for me since near the end of 2007, I was diagnosed with breast cancer.

One of the books my priest’s wife loaned me was : HERBAL HEALING FOR WOMEN by Rosemary Gladstar. It is a very interesting read but involves a great deal of knowledge in how to make homemade recipes. I did find Gladstar’s book for a $1.00 on www.half.com It is a reference that I hope to use more when I move out of the apprentice stage.

My library had a book entitled EARL MINDELL’S HERB BIBLE. This book is written in language that most anyone can understand. I particularly like his section on the top 100 herbs. He tells you how they work and the proper dosage to take. If there is a necessary caution for an herb-he tells you. He has a section on the history of herbs and a section on just how herbs work in one’s body. Here is an excerpt: “The living cells of plants can be likened to miniature chemical factories. They take in raw materials-carbon dioxide, water, and sunlight-and convert them into useful nutrients. Oxygen is a by-product of this process. Many herbs are rich in compounds that are pharmacologically active, that is, they exert a profound effect on certain animal tissues and organs. Therefore, they can be used as drugs in treating, curing, or preventing disease. A plant may consist of several components including leaves, roots, fruit, flowers, bark, stems, or seeds. Any of these parts may contain the active ingredients that give the plant its medicinal properties.” I also looked for his book on www.half.com  and found it for a $1.00.

About midsummer I visited a little bookstore in the country. This little store is in a home. My eyes caught the title of a book entitled: PRESCRIPTION FOR NUTRITIONAL HEALING by Phyllis A. Balch, CNC. I bought the book for $23.00 dollars. It is a very extensive work. The book contains three parts. Part one is entitled: UNDERSTANDING THE ELEMENTS OF HEALTH. Part two is entitled: THE DISORDERS. Finally part 3 is entitled: REMEDIES AND THERAPIES. I have used this book a great deal concerning my breast cancer and my osteoarthitis. I particulary enjoy the section on herbs. Like Earl Mindell, Phyllis Balch gives exact doses and all of the cautions that are needed. I would imagine there are some copies for sale on www.half.com. It is worth a try to find a good used copy if money is tight. This is book that I will use the rest of my life.

I have found two great sources to buy my herbs and vitamins from. In my research last summer I came across an herbal company that has been in business since l987. This company is based in Oregon. They try to run their company with a zero tolerance for waste. Nearly all of their products are organic. The average price for a bottle of herbs is $9.50. Each bottle contains 100 capsules. I think that is a terrific price for an organic herb. The web address is  www.mountainroseherbs.comThis company also does international business. I also buy many of my vitamins and some herbs from a chiropractor in my church. His products are very high quality. His business is called Myostar and he can be reached at myostar@aol.com.

Today, I’m only on one prescription which is my cancer pill. For the rest of my disorders I take vitamins and herbs. I take green tea, curcumin, wormwood, cloves, black walnut and various vitamins for my cancer. I take nettle for my allergies. For occasional respiratory problems, I use capsules which contain a blend of the following herbs: pleurisy, slippery elm, wild cherry, plantain, chickweed., horehound, licorice, mullein, kelp, ginger and saw palmetto. For my osteoarthritis, I take cod liver oil, calcium with Vitamin D in a capsule ( three times a day) and the herb white willow bark for pain.

My search into natural medicine continues. This winter, for the first time in my life, I have not gotten the flu or bronchitis. I strongly believe that good natural preventive medicine helped me. From time to time, I will try to post as I make progress in becoming more knowledgeable about natural medicine. In the meantime, I hope my resources will be the beginning a healthier lifestyle for my readers.

God bless each of you!