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Herbs & Botanicals E – H

Common Name: EucalyptusScreenshot 2018-04-13 at 5.44.56 PM

Scientific/Latin Name: Eucalyptus globulus

Symbolism/Spiritual Meanings: Healing, Protection. It is seen as a protecting and nurturing tree. It can also symbolize ‘sloth’ due to its narcotic foliage. The eucalyptus is a holy tree for the Aboriginals, for them it represents the division of underworld, earth, and heaven. At a spiritual level the eucalyptus has a purifying effect, negative energy disappears in the place where you burn a eucalyptus leaf.

Medicinal Properties:

Eucalyptus features in a range of preparations to relieve symptoms of the common cold, for example, cough lozenges and inhalants. Eucalyptus oil may have antibacterial effects on pathogenic bacteria in the upper respiratory tract, including Haemophilus influenzae, a bacterium responsible for a range of infections, and some strains of streptococcus. It can be used to treat fungal infections and skin wounds. Eucalyptus extract may act as a pain reliever, and research indicates that the oil may have analgesic properties. Other conditions that eucalyptus may help with include arthritis, potentially due to its anti-inflammatory properties, a blocked nose wounds and burns, ulcers, cold sores, bladder diseases, diabetes – eucalyptus might help lower blood sugar, and fevers. Eucalyptus essential oil is highly effective for treating respiratory problems, such as asthma, bronchitis, COPD, pneumonia and even tuberculosis. Using eucalyptus for asthma is a proven treatment that dilates the blood vessels and allows more oxygen into the lungs. Simply mix eucalyptus oil, peppermint oil and coconut oil for a Homemade Vapor Rub, and put on upper chest.

Practical Uses:

Eucalyptus oil is a great hands and feet cleanser so if you’re up for a real treat you can have a refreshing salt soak for hands or feet. It’s also an effective insect repellent and insecticide. Grease can’t stand a chance against it, making a strong case for its inclusion in homemade cleansers.If you have stained fabric surfaces, give eucalyptus essential oil a try at removal. Of course, you want to make sure (in an inconspicuous spot) that the oil is compatible with the blend of fabric you have, just in case a random synthetic blend reacts poorly to the eucalyptus oil. Refresh the mind and lift the spirits with ten drops of eucalyptus essential oil added to a small spritzer bottle filled with distilled water. Simply spray 12 inches from your face and enjoy inhaling the gentle mist. Run stinky clothes and shoes through the dryer with a rag soaked in water and a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil. For shoes, stick the rag down into the shoe. This can help prevent odors as well as help keep the shape intact!

 

Common Name: Fir BalsamScreenshot 2018-04-13 at 5.24.08 PM

Scientific/Latin Name: Abies balsamea

Symbolism/Spiritual Meanings: Springtime, fortitude, immortality, hope, promise, and renewal

Medicinal Properties:

Historically, it has been used for burns, sores, cuts, tumors, heart and chest pains, cancer, mucous membrane swelling (inflammation), colds, coughs, warts, wounds, and as a pain-reliever. It

can be applied directly to the skin to treat hemorrhoids and kill germs. It has great antiseptic and healing properties of balsam fir pitch. Simply dab it on cuts, abrasions, sores, and wounds as a salve. The pitch will form a protective cover that aids in healing and destroys organisms that would otherwise find the area a hospitable place to grow and multiply.

Practical Uses:

Balsam fir pitch can be used as a tonic and quick pick-me-up when consumed, though you probably would not want to eat more than a few dabs at a time. Fir needle oil can be added to many homemade cleaners and disinfectants. The wood is also used for light frame construction, interior knotty paneling, and crates.

 

Common Name: GingerScreenshot 2018-04-13 at 5.26.00 PM

Scientific/Latin Name: Zingiber officinale

Symbolism/Spiritual Meanings: Love, Money, Success, Power

Medicinal Properties:

Whether we’re talking about curing a simple tummy ache or morning sickness and severe nausea from pregnancy, ginger has been used for thousands of years as an effective digestive aid and natural remedy for nausea. Ginger helps people who are bloated, constipated and have other gastrointestinal disorders. Since ginger is so effective at warming the body, it can help break down the accumulation of toxins in your organs and is known to cleanse the lymphatic system. Ginger has been shown to be effective against exercise-induced muscle pain. Since ginger has anti-inflammatory effects it can help with osteoarthritis. This area of research is relatively new, but ginger may have powerful anti-diabetic properties. Ginger has been shown to speed up emptying of the stomach in people with chronic indigestion. Gingerol, the bioactive substance in fresh ginger, can help lower the risk of infections. There is also some evidence that ginger can enhance brain function directly. Ginger may also be effective against pancreatic cancer, breast cancer and ovarian cancer. Ginger appears to be very effective against menstrual pain when taken at the beginning of the menstrual period. It may prevent stomach ulcers caused by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as aspirin and ibuprofen.

Practical Uses:

Great for use in teas, tinctures, capsules or in cooking. To make tea, simmer 3/4 teaspoon of chopped ginger in 1 cup of hot water for five minutes in a closed teapot. A few tablespoons of dried, powdered ginger root added to a hot bath is effective in relieving sore muscles or body aches (can also lower fever). You can also nib­ble crystallized ginger. Taking 1 gram of dried, powdered, encapsulated ginger 30 minutes to two hours before travel can help ease travel related nausea.

 

Common Name: HibiscusScreenshot 2018-04-13 at 5.28.09 PM

Scientific/Latin Name: Hibiscus rosa-sinensis

Symbolism/Spiritual Meanings: Joy, Happiness, Lust, Love, Divination, Beauty, Fertility

Medicinal Properties:

The health benefits of hibiscus tea include its ability to treat high blood pressure, high cholesterol, disturbed digestive and immune system, and inflammatory problems as well. It helps to cure liver diseases and reduces the risk of cancer. It can also speed up the metabolism and help in healthy, gradual weight loss. It is rich in vitamin C, minerals, and antioxidants and helps in the treatment of hypertension and anxiety. The health benefits of hibiscus tea include relief from cramps and menstrual pain. It helps in restoring hormonal balance as well, which can reduce the symptoms of menstruation like mood swings, depression, and overeating. Hibiscus tea is also used as a sports drink in order to satiate thirst.

Practical Uses:

To grow your hair create a paste out of crushed hibiscus flower and leaves by mixing it to your shampoo. Apply it to your hair and lather it like you would normally do for the normal shampoo. Leave it on for about 5 minutes then rinse off. If you want, you can also mix the hibiscus paste to your conditioner. The dried flowers of this plant make a tea with a distinct red color and a somewhat tart, lemony taste.

 

Common Name: Holy Basil TulsiScreenshot 2018-04-13 at 5.46.15 PM

Scientific/Latin Name: Ocimum tenuiflorum

Symbolism/Spiritual Meanings: wealth, love, and prosperity

Medicinal Properties:

Holy basil is a powerful antioxidant with demonstrated antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. Holy basil functions as an adaptogen, enhancing the body’s natural response to physical and emotional stress. Holy basil is also high in antioxidants and helps your body detox. Studies show that holy basil can protect your body against toxic chemicals. It may also prevent cancer by reducing the growth of cancerous cells. If you have prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, all parts of the holy basil plant can help reduce your blood sugar. Since holy basil targets metabolic stress, it can also help with weight loss and cholesterol levels. It can even help people with arthritis or fibromyalgia. Holy basil can counteract the effects of stress-induced ulcers.  It is also beneficial in treating respiratory ailments like chronic bronchitis, asthma et cetera.

Practical Uses:

Use the pill and ointment form for eczema. Use an essential oil made from the leaves for insect bites. You can also make holy basil tea using the leaves, flowers, or dried leaf powder.  The leaves are also commonly used in cooking, though some people eat the leaves raw. Holy basil tastes spicy and bitter.

 

Common Name: Ho wood

Scientific/Latin Name: Cinnamomum camphora var linalool

Symbolism/Spiritual Meanings: Peace, Relaxation

Medicinal Properties:

Ho Wood is calming to the mind without causing drowsiness. Due to its high % of linalol, the oil is thought to be deeply nourishing and supportive to the immune system. Use this oil for healing from an infection, cold or flu. Ho Wood is also a great oil for reducing inflammation, spasms and pain in muscles and joints. The oil has important antibacterial properties. The oil can also boost the immune system, kill germs, fungi and parasites, and improve sex drive (aphrodisiac).

Practical Uses:

Mix up to 15 drops of Ho Wood oil into a cup of Himalayan or Epsom salt, and add it to your steaming bath. The steam will diffuse the oil molecules and improve your mood. The oil can clear your skin, sinuses, etc.Be it a candle oil burner, an ultrasonic or a nebulizer, they can all be used to diffuse Ho Wood essential oil. Skin applications are the best option to make good use of Ho Wood essential oil. You can blend/mix up to 25 drops of essential oil per ounce carrier oil and apply with gentle massage movements directly on the affected area.

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