By Bridgette Ruge, M.A., CPT
If you haven’t started already, it is time to start a garden! The more you can grow your own food, the healthier you will be. This is the best way to ensure you’re eating some real food, can control the soil and avoid pesticides and GMOs. I recently took this on myself by starting with fresh herbs. Herbs have incredible and varied health benefits, and nothing beats a meal with fresh herbs—am I right? This is a great way to get started on growing your own and easily increasing the nutritional power of your meals. What’s even better is that herbs can be easily grown indoors. I keep all of mine on the windowsill inside and they continue to flourish beautifully! It can be challenging sometimes to start from seeds, so it’s okay to buy small herb plants and keep them growing.
So, let’s discuss some of the herbs and their benefits. Chinese medicine has been using herbs for medicinal purposes for hundreds of years with incredible results. Below are some common herbs, but there are so many more to explore and add to your food preparation. Visit The World’s Healthiest Foods at www.whfoods.com to read about all of the herbs and all-natural foods and their health benefits. This is a wonderful resource for anyone looking to improve their health and treat or prevent disease using food, not medicine!
Basil—Anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, helps rid the body of free-radicals (which plays a huge role in anti-aging), excellent source of iron, which determines the oxygen-carrying capacity of your blood.
Oregano—High in fiber, which controls cholesterol levels; often used for the treatment of colds, influenza, mild fevers, indigestion, stomach upsets, and painful menstruation conditions; protection against free-radicals; proven super “functional food”, providing a huge dose of nutrition for a small amount consumed.
Sage— Improves mental concentration, attention span and quickens the senses; hence, sage infusion has long been recognized as “thinker’s tea;” protection against cardiovascular disease; rich source of B-vitamins; improves night-vision; eliminates free radicals; and fights against lung and oral cancers.
Cilantro— Reduction of “bad” LDL cholesterol, high in minerals and antioxidants, richest herbal source of Vitamin K, which is vital for bone building, used as a treatment for Alzheimer’s by limiting neuronal damage in the brain, and can detox 80% of heavy metals in the body when combined with chlorella.
Rosemary—Anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, anti-fungal, anti-septic; high in B-vitamin, especially folate; rich in vitamin C to boost immunity; excellent source of iron, which determines oxygen-carrying capacity of your blood.