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December 7, 2015

It is a wonderful time of the year with the Christmas and New Years season upon us! It’s fun to have the many delicacies and delicious treats to enjoy and to view the beautiful lights and scenery. Today, I want to remind you of five holiday herbs that can enhance our health.

Peppermint is an excellent remedy for chills, colic, fevers, dizziness, gas, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dysentery, cholera, heart trouble, influenza, and hysteria. It is helpful in cases of insanity and useful for convulsions and spasms in infants. A general stimulant, this herb quickly diffuses itself throughout the body and brings back its warmth. It also cleanses and strengthens the entire body. A cup of strong peppermint tea can help a headache, and it will strengthen the nerves instead of weaken them like drugs.

Cinnamon is a favorite holiday herb used in many ways throughout the year. It is a powerful antiseptic, and has been shown to suppress completely the cause of most urinary tract infections and the fungus responsible for vaginal yeast infections. It also contains eugenol which helps to relieve pain, and helps as a digestive aid in helping to break down fats and boosting the activity of some digestive enzymes. Some Japanese researcher report that it helps to reduce blood pressure as well.

Ginger is a great tasting herb that is mainly used for help in digestion. It is great for relief of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy, is anti-inflammatory, and boosts the immune system. It also promotes perspiration which helps to eliminate toxins and break a fever. It has been used for kidney problems, fever, arthritis, female issues, and to prevent seasickness. Ginger’s pleasing taste makes it appealing to children as well as adults.

Cloves have been an ancient breath freshener, and has been used to treat indigestion, diarrhea, hernia, ringworm, and athlete’s foot. Like cinnamon, cloves also contains eugenol which is anesthetic and antiseptic. Cloves have been used for toothaches as well.

Horehound used to be a popular candy and cough remedy, but was banned by the FDA in 1989 for cough remedies, claiming it was ineffective. Yet, it had gained popularity because of its effectiveness. It can still be found in preparations that do not claim its value for helping coughs.

I hope you enjoy these herbs as you celebrate the holidays.

We’re here to help you!Amy Willis, Your Local Herbalist