Indigenous peoples of South America, from the Incas to shamans of present-day tribes, have turned to the red inner

Pau d'Arco Trea

Immunity fighter

bark of the native pau d’arco (meaning “arrow wood”) tree to cure all kinds of ailments.  The bark has been credited with the power to heal infections, joint pain, digestive distress and wounds.  North American and European herbalists have caught on to the potential of pau d’arco to remedy fungal, viral and bacterial infections such as herpes, candida and flu.  Pau d’arco is also an anti-inflammatory and seems to enhance lymphatic function and overall immunity.

Preparation of tea: Boil 4 tsp. of the bark in 1 qt. of water for 5 min.  Take the tea off the burner and let it steep for 15 min.  Stain the tea through a fine strainer to catch all of the tiny particles.  Drink this tea warm or cold.

Pau d'Arco Bark

Bark from the Pau d'Arco Tree

Tea for Weakened Immunity: 1 tsp. pau d’arco bark, 1/2 tsp. echinacea, 1/2 tsp. astralagus root   Bring all 3 herbs to a boil in 1 1/2 ups of water; simmer for 5 min.  Steep for 10 min.  Strain.  Drink 1 cup a day to prevent infections, or 3 cups a day to fight an acute infection.

Tea for candida-yeast infections:
2 tsp. pau d’arco bark, 1 tsp. licorice root, 1/2 tsp. chamomile flowers     Boil the pau d’acrco and licorice in  3 cups of water.  Remove from heat and add the chamomile flowers.  Steep for 10 min.  Strain and drink 1-3 cups a day.  This tea helps to kill off proliferating Candida albicans fungi that causes yeast infections.

Tea for Joint and Back Pain: 2 tsp. pau d’arco brk, 1/2 tsp. dandelion root; 1 tsp. stinging-nettle leaves  Boil the pau d’arco bark and dandelion toot in 4 cups of water.  Remove from heat and add the nettle leaves.  Steep for 10 min.  Stain and drink a t least 2 cups a day.  This tea eases joint and back pain due to inflammations.

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The hop plant (Humulus lupulus) is native to North America, western Asia and Europe.  It is one of the oldest cultivated plants.  It was found in ancient Roman gardens as a twining vine, and by the ninth century most European brewers were using the herb’s female flowers, or the hops, to flavor beer.  Hops provide a range of medicinal properties due to their glands, which contain essential oils comprised of more the 150 chemical components and resin like substances with bitter principles.  Because of these bitters, hops tea helps to regulate the appetite.  The tea is prescribed for nervousness and sleep disorders, and the plant hormones in hops tea regulate menstrual cycles, ease menopausal symptoms and help to decrease sexual hyper-stimulations, especially in men.  Hops tea also treat nervous heart ailments, skin conditions as well as bladder and kidney problems.  Hops are most effective when used with other medicinal herbs, so they are a good choice in tea blends for nervous system ailments.

Hops Tea: Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 2 heaping tsp. of hop flowers, cover and steep for 10-15 min.  Drink 2-3 cups of tea every day as a general calming remedy; or use 1 cup half an hour before bedtime to help prevent insomnia.  Note that the bitter principles in this tea become quite strong as the steeping approaches 15 min.

For Nervous Tension: 1 1/2 oz. hops, 3/4 oz. hawthorn flowers, 3/4 oz. lemon-balm leaves, 3/4 oz. valerian root   Prepare the tea by puring 1 cup of boiling water over 2 tsp. of the blend and steep for 10 min.  This blend helps relieve nervous heart symptoms, waking in the night and an inability to calm one’s thoughts.

For Sexual Hyper-stimulations: 1 1/2 oz. hops, 1 oz. marjoram, 3/4 oz. valerian root, 1/3 oz. peppermint leaves  Prepare as above.  drink 2-3 cups daily.  This tea relieves excessive erotic preoccupations, which can cause restlessness and poor concentration.

For Menopausal Complaints: 1 oz. hops, 3/4 oz. black-cohosh root, 3/4 ox. lady’s mantle, 3/4 oz. St. John’s wort 1/3 ox. sage leaves.  Prepare the tea.  This tea blends helps improve the most common menopausal complaints, including hot flashes and depressive moods.


Weak Bladder? Frequent and small urination? Urinary tract infections? Try Goldenrod Tea, it can help improve the tone of the badder and urinary tract, as well as reduce the likelihood that an infection will develop. Pour 1 cup of water over 1 tsp. of goldenrod, boil, let stand 2 min. and strain.


When you think of vitamin C, you are most likely thinking of grapefruit and oranges, but rose-hips, the fruit of the wild rose, have more vitamin C than do citrus fruits.  The vitamin C content of rose-hip tea is its primary benefit – along with that is its ability to help prevent and treat colds and flu.  Rose-hip tea is refreshing, pleasantly tart and contains vitamins, A, B, C, E and K, pectin and organic acids.  Besides battling colds, this nutrient-rich tea boost your health in other ways as well:  It helps strengthen the body’s resistance to infections, reinforces digestive function, combats all kinds of illnesses with fever, flushes out the kidneys and urinary tract and relieves mild rheumatic pain.

Preparing the tea: Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 2 heaping tsp. of chopped rose hips. You can use rose hips with or without their seeds.  Steep the tea, covered, for 15 min.  Sweeten the refreshing, slightly sour tea with honey, if desired.  Drink the tea lukewarm at bedtime for maximum effectiveness.

Cold Prevention Tea: 1 1/2 oz. rose hips, 1/4 oz. linden flowers, 3/4 oz. marsh-mallow root, 3/4 oz. mullein flowers and leaves    This tea stimulates the immune system.  When you have a cold or flue, the tea loosens bronchial mucus and makes coughs more productive.  For a cut of tea, use 1 cup of water and 2 tsp. of the tea blend.

For Abdominal Craps and Mild Diarrhea: 1 oz. rose hips, 3/4 ox. peppermint leaves, 3/4 oz. lemon-balm leaves, 3/4 oz. blackberry leaves   This tea regulates bile flow and relieves intestinal cramping and mild diarrhea.  IT is also a first-aid remedy for queasiness and nausea.  Use 1 cup of water to 2 tsp. of the tea blend.

For gout and Kidney Gravel: 1 1/2 oz. rose hips, 3/4 oz. nettle leaves, 3/4 oz. goldenrod leaves, 3/4 oz. horsetail leaves  This tea flushes gravel for the kidneys, combats chronic urinary tract infections and helps eliminate uric acid in gout patients.  For each cup of tea, use 1 cup of water and 2 tsp. of the tea mixture.


Lemon Balm Herb

Lemon Balm

Lemon-balm tea offers multifaceted healing effects and were known as far back as the eighth century when Emperor Charlemagne ordered that the medicinal lemon balm be grown in every garden.  The plant emits a fresh, lemony aroma when you rub it between your fingers.  The essential oil in lemon balm – aldehyde (commonly known as citronella) – is responsible for the plant’s characteristic lemony aroma as well as its many medicinal properties.  Lemon-balm tea is useful for alleviating nervous digestive and heart disorders and promoting sleep.  Also know by the common names “gentle balm,” “garden balm” and “sweet balm, ” the herb reduces menstrual cramps and calms tension headaches, migraines and gastrointestinal cramp.  The herb is also beneficial for improving concentration and lifting depression.

Healing tea mixtures:

Calming Tea for Children:  1 oz. lemon-balm leaves, 1 oz. passionflower green parts, 2/3 oz. chamomile flowers, 2/3 oz St. John’s wort      This tea has a calming effect and is helpful for difficulties in concentration or falling asleep.  Mix herbs well. Steep 1-2 tsp. of the tea mixture in 1 cup of boiled water, covered, for 10 min.  Strain.

For Stress-related Gastrointestinal Cramps: 1 ox. lemon-balm leaves, 3/4 oz. fennel seeds, 3/4 oz. peppermint leaves, 1/2 oz. valerian root    This combination increases the antispasmodic effects of each of these herbs.  Mix herbs well. Steep 1-2 tsp. of the tea mixture in 1 cup of boiled water, covered, for 10 min.   Strain.

For Nervous Heart Complaints:  1 oz. lemon-balm leaves, 1 oz. hawthorn flowers, q oz. chamomile flowers, 1 oz. valerian root   This tea may be helpful for nervous heart complains caused by stress or anxiety.  Mix herbs well.  Steep 1-2 tsp. of the tea mixture in 1 cup of boiled water, covered, for 10 min.  Strain.  Honey may be added for taste.

Preparation of Lemon-Balm Tea:  The leaves of this herb have long been appreciated for their flavor.  Pour a generous cup of freshly boiled water over 1-2 tsp. of dried lemon-balm leaves and steep, covered, for 10 minutes.  Keep the leaves covered to prevent most of the essential oils from escaping.  Drink a total of 3-4 cups over the course of a day, preferably before meals.


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There are two ways to extract medicinal properties from herbs to make teas – infusing and decocting. Infuse – herb leaves or flowers, decoct – roots, bark, twigs and berries.