With the arrival of spring, I've noticed that many people are being affected my colds, allergies and different ailments. So, today I'm sharing some of the medicinal uses of natural ingredients that most people have at home. I learnt some of these uses while in India visiting a spice farm plantation in Goa
- Relieve upper respiratory infections: Ayurveda suggests making a tea with cloves to lessen or prevent colds and flue. It is also used as an expectorant, making it easier to cough up phlegm. Cloves are natural painkillers and also attack germs, so they will help you get rid of sore throat.
- Treat a toothache: you can temporarily alleviate toothache by dabbing a little clove oil (crush a teaspoon of whole cloves with a tablespoon of olive oil and mix together) on a cotton ball and placing it on the sore tooth or on your gums. This can also help clear infections.
- Reduce inflammation: use clove oil to massage sore muscles, it can also be used for pain related to arthritis and rheumatism.
-Improve digestion: cloves can help alleviate stomach aches, intestinal gas, and diarrhoea but you have to be careful as they are strong so can also irritate the stomach if used in excess.
- Antiseptic: Apply either a slice of fresh turmeric or turmeric powder on any wound or cuts on the body.
- Cold and throat infection: add 1 or 2 teaspoons of turmeric powder in a glass of hot water or hot milk (organic oat or rice milk as diary milks create more phlegm) and drink before you go to bed.
- Cancer fighter: the curcumin is considered to be a top cancer agent. You can ass turmeric to a smoothie, hot water or hot milk and drink daily.
- Toothache: you can make a paste of cinnamon powder with agave or sustainable honey. Apply the paste directly onto the aching tooth 2 to 3 times a day.
- Cold and cough: Boil some water and add cinnamon sticks to it, use this water to make tea. I use this all the time, it gives a yummy sweetness to teas.
- Cholesterol: Drink tea with a cinnamon stick or powder twice daily. It is said to even prevent the formation of blood clots.
- Sinus headache: inhale a pinch of cinnamon oil in each nostril.
- Cold & throat infection: Place one glass of water with the powder of 8 to 10 peppercorns in a pot and bring to a boil. Drink twice a day
- Reducing pain: Mix pepper powder along with cumin powder with coconut, almond or sesame oil and make a paste. Rub this on sore muscles or joints to reduce pain.
- Reduce inflammation: When used regularly whether it is on a tea or on foods, ginger reduces inflammation and reduces pain that are caused by inflammation such as menstrual cycles pains, osteoarthritis, etc.
- Cold & flu relief: ginger tea promotes sweating, warming the body from within, apart from that, being antibacterial, it helps to release germs. To make ginger tea at home, chop thin slices of ginger and add it to a cup of hot water. Adding a slice of lemon will also boost your vitamin C.
- Tendinitis: Apply 1 tbsp of grated ginger mixed with coconut oil or honey to the tender area as needed.
- Digestion: Ginger helps relieve gastrointestinal irritation, stimulate saliva and bile production, and suppress gastric contractions as food and fluids move through the GI tract.
- Cardiovascular health: Just as cinnamon, ginger is believed to help in reducing cholesterol, lowering the risk of blood clotting, and helping to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
I normally make chai tea in which I place filtered water in a pot and add cloves, cinnamon sticks, anise star, cardamom pods, chaga mushrooms, bring to a boil and let simmer for about 10 minutes. To drink you could add coconut milk or any milk of your choice and some agave or other sweetener if you wish. Now, that you know some of the benefits of the ingredients, you might enjoy healthy chai even more =)