Kitchen Herbs for Your Immunity
Garden herbs do more than just make our food taste good, they have useful antimicrobial, immune boosting and anti-inflammatory properties that can help keep us well. Herbs were revered and traded for their medicinal properties over 4,000 years ago and with the resurgence of medicinal medicine, it is worth checking out these kitchen herbs for their many health benefits. Here is a look at some of the most commonly found varieties.
This has to be the most universally used herb as it features in cuisine worldwide. It is has SO many health benefits, including keeping your digestive tract, heart and vascular system as well as your immune system healthy. For the brave, crush a clove of garlic and take it with a spoon of honey.
The best winter warmer! Taken with honey and lemon in hot water this is the best tonic for those winter colds. Ginger is also good for nausea including morning sickness; digestive issues, and some pain conditions such as painful periods as it promotes circulation in the body.
A hot topic right now. It is one of the best anti-inflammatory herbs and because of this it is beneficial for numerous conditions from improving your immune system to joint pain, to post-exercise recovery and also Alzheimer’s. However this herb isn’t well absorbed on its own so is best taken with black pepper to improve its absorption or for better therapeutic effects as a supplement that’s been potentiated or in a liposomal form.
This is helpful for the common cold and coughs as well as being a carminative which makes it good for headaches and particularly good for symptoms of IBS and other digestive complaints.
Features is the Mediterranean diet. It’s great for gut health and helping keep the gut microbes in balance due to its antimicrobial and
anti-inflammatory properties. By keeping the gut healthy it also boosts immunity, it’s a great antioxidant and can help improve cholesterol levels.
Works wonderfully as a gargle for sore throats. Just steep a couple of tablespoons of fresh in hot water for 15 minutes and gargle when cooled. Can also be taken warm with sage and honey & lemon for winter ills and chills.
Traditionally used for menopausal hot flushes and night sweats, but also particularly useful for mouth and throat infections. Caution: - use with caution in pregnancy and lactation.
This herb is protective of the liver and promotes mental alertness and memory, as well as being a great antioxidant. Diffusing the essential oil of rosemary is shown to be helpful for study and concentration. https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-33519453
Using the above herbs regularly can help provide additional health benefits on a daily basis. After all the father of medicine once said –
…let food be your medicine and medicine be your food…(Hippocrates)
Any of these can also be steeped in boiling water for 15 minutes to make a tea and taken with honey and lemon. But for a more therapeutic effect these and many more herbs are also available in liquid extract form, that can be blended into individual medicinal tonics (usually 3-6 herbs are combined for the best therapeutic effect), or alternatively can be obtained in capsule or liposomal form. Send me a message if you are interested in a more therapeutic form or would like to make an appointment.
Caution: care should be taken and advise sought from your GP if you are on Warfrin or other strong blood thinning medications as some herbs such as ginger and garlic can increase the blood-thinning.
Mills, S & Bone, K. (2000). The Principles and Practice of Phytotherapy: Modern Herbal Medicine: Churchill Livingstone
Rasmussen, P.H.I.L. (2000). Culinary Herbs and Spices to Know above in Infectious Times. Retrieved 22 April 2020, from http//Herbblurb.com