Saturday, April 17, 2010

Smell that Smell

Herbs. Not just for flavoring cuisine.

Sage has many healing properties. Eighteenth-century herbalist John Evelyn once claimed that the use of sage could "render men immortal." That's a bit of a stretch, but it can be used to whiten teeth, decrease sweating (my personal favorite), and soothe a sore throat. It can also aid in the digestion of gas-producing foods.

Thyme was used by the Egyptians to embalm their dead. What, you're not into embalming your dead? Well then, it was also used in WWI as an antiseptic and can be used to combat a respiratory infection and cough.

Rosemary has been used by healers for its memory-boosting properties. The ancient Greeks wore rosemary garlands to aid in recall - many modern day students continue to use it.

In a small test, three minutes of rosemary aromatherapy seems to have increased the test subjects' math abilities while decreasing anxiety.
Add to this antiaging powers, antibiotic properties, and it's ability to aid in hair growth.

Oh yeah, and though Eucalyptus is a potent weapon against coughs and asthma, don't eat it unless you're a Koala.

Creams that include Chamomile (or is it Camomile?) have been found to be as effective as over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream.

Creams containing Arnica should be applied immediately after an injury for quicker healing.

Peppermint will ease the pain of a sinus headache. Using a cooling and refreshing peppermint compress is pure heaven.
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