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Health Blog

Helpful herbs from A to Z-The letter O.

 Today’s blog is on helpful herbs that begin with the letter O. This information is to inform only. This information is never meant to treat, diagnose, or cure anything. Always use caution and common sense when taking vitamins or herbs and check with your physician for any contraindications.
 
    In the last blog we talked about the taste of herbs and why they are important. In this blog I want to briefly discuss the energy of herbs and why that matters when considering which herb to take. Some herbs are cooling in nature (think of a cucumber) and others are warming in nature (think of ginger). This is important to consider when you are trying to find the right herbal treatment for what you are trying to address. Warming herbs are best used to treat cold conditions. Think of a person who has achy bones on a cold winter day. You wouldn’t offer that person a plate full of cucumbers to make them feel better but you might offer them a warm cup of ginger tea. Cooling herbs help to detoxify and to remove inflammation. Think of someone who is experiencing symptoms of a heat stroke. This is where you would possible offer a plate full of cold cucumbers or watermelon.
 
   There are numerous other things to consider when you are choosing the right herbs for your health. This is just a much abbreviated explanation that I hope helps to explain why the energy and taste of herbs are mentioned in these blogs. Now on to today’s herbs.
 
Western Herb

Oregon grape Root(Mahonia Aquifolium)
 
Parts Used: Rhizome and Root
 
Energy and Taste: Cool and bitter
 
Constituents: Berberine alkaloid, columbamine, hydrastine, jatrorrhizine, oxyacanthine, tetrahydroberberine, tannins.
 
Internal Uses: Liver, menstrual irregularities, skin diseases, arthritis. The yellow rhizomes are used as a hepatic biliary stimulant enhancing the flow of bile throughout the liver and gallbladder. This helps to improve the liver function. Can be taken as a tincture or tea form. Do not take if you have hyperthyroid issues.
 
Topical Uses:  A cream containing 10 % can be applied to rashes to help irritation.
 
 

Osha Root(Ligusticum Porteri)
 
Parts Used:  Root
 
Constituents:  Alkaloids, camphor, sapononins, ferulic acid, terpenes, phytosterols.
 
Energy and Taste: Bitter and cool
 
Internal Uses:  Aids in digestion, colds, cough, and flu fevers. 3-9 grams or 10-30 drops of tincture.
 

 
Chinese Herb

Oyster Shell (Mu LI)
 
Concha Ostrea Gigas
 
Energy and Taste: Astringent, cold and salty.
 
Constituents: Calcium, copper, iron, polysaccharides, sodium, magnesium.
 
Internal Uses:  Good for anxiety, palpitations, insomnia, irritability and excessive anger. 15-30 grams
 
 
Hope any of this information was helpful. Check back for the next blog on helpful herbs beginning with the letter P.
 
 
 
 
 
Resources
The Way of Ayurvedic Herbs: A Contemporary Introduction and Useful Manual for the World's Oldest Healing System, Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa and Michael Tierra
 
The Way of Chinese Herbs, Michael Tierra
 
The Way of Herbs: Fully Updated with the Latest Developments in Herbal Science, Michael Tierra

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