I don’t ever remember being given herbal remedies when I was growing up. Instead, it was the dreaded pink Pepto Bismol, or aspirin, or the new kid on the block, Tylenol.
When did we start to fear Mother Nature’s Medicine?
I guess my mother didn’t have any role models to teach her natural healing and thus, couldn’t pass it along to me. So, when my own children were young, I followed suit, not knowing any better. I gave them antibiotics when the doctor deemed them necessary. Ditto any other prescription or over-the-counter drug.
Oh, how I wish I’d had a Dr. Aviva Romm-type around when I was younger. Or a wise elder healer. I didn’t know either of my grandmothers.
But there must have been something inside of me that suspected there was a better way (I did make my kids’ baby food from scratch, I’m proud to say). Maybe it was a past life memory.
At any rate, it wasn’t until decades later when I had fibromyalgia that something shifted and I fully began to embrace what I think is the greatest truth that has been with us from the beginning of time.
Food is Medicine
When I think that I had never bought fresh ginger root or healing spices like turmeric, cardamom, fennel, etc. until I was in my 50s, I can hardly believe it.
Healing herbal infusions of nettle, oatstraw, or comfrey? I’d never heard of such a thing. But now, it all seems so crystal clear to me. Why wouldn’t someone reach for #1 instead of #2 for nausea?
- Pepto Bismol (Each mL contains bismuth sub-salicylate 17.6 mg. Nonmedicinal ingredients: benzoic acid, D&C Red No.22, D&C Red No. 28, flavor, magnesium aluminum silicate, methylcellulose, sodium saccharin, salicylic acid, sodium salicylate, sorbic acid, and water)
When I traveled to Michigan over the holidays to visit family, I brought along dried elderberries, cinnamon sticks, cloves and fresh ginger root. I cooked up a batch of elderberry syrup to give to family and friends.
It’s the height of cold and flu season and elderberries are famous for their high antioxidant level and ability to boost the immune system. Well, you would have thought I was whipping up a witch’s brew for all the suspicion it garnered.
I’ve let go of hoping that my family jumps on the holistic healing bandwagon. We all have our own beliefs and I respect that. And of course, no matter how much education we have, in the eyes of our family, we’re often still in kindergarten.
For years now I have been studying everything from a natural or holistic point of view. Ayurveda became my main focus because it is so rooted in the elements, in living in harmony with Mother Nature.
What’s so scary about that?
How sad is it that prescription drugs have become the norm, are advertised on TV (we’re one of only two countries that allow this), but that you can’t make a statement or claim that a herb, food, or plant can possibly cure an illness.
For many of us living in today’s modern world, Western medicine was all we were taught. But if you think healing with food and herbs is a new or far-fetched idea, take a look at this chart from the Taste of Herbs online herbal learning course. It speaks volumes!
60,000 years ago neanderthals used herbs!!!
If you don’t already, I urge you to look to your own garden, your farmer’s market or other sources of healthy whole food to discover the healing properties right in front of you, courtesy of Mother Nature. I think you’ll be amazed.