We have been experiencing a revival of herbal medicine, in this country, starting as far back as the 1970’s, both as an alternative to pharmaceuticals as well as in an effort to live more sustainable. Today, with health care reform in the fore front, prevention and ‘quality of life’ are standards that Americans can not only agree upon, but are more committed to than ever. Herbs play a big role in upholding these new standards and as we develop our understanding and education, we’re finding they fulfill a broad health care niche.
Treating the common cold has been the #1 driving force for people making the switch from over-the-counter drugs to herbal remedies. Considering modern medicine still has no cure, people are willing to try something more natural, without side-effects, that has the potential to cut the duration of a cold in half or better yet, prevent it from coming at all. Repeat sales of herbal remedies is proof that their popularity is more than just wishful thinking.
The fact is, herbs are extremely effective healers. Beyond cold prevention, we can start to explore the many facets of herbal medicine. From culinary spices to acute remedies, herbs are multifaceted allies. Take symptom relief, for example. Common complaints such as headaches, heartburn, overwhelm, and sleeplessness, do not necessarily require a prescription. There are a myriad of herbal choices that are safe and effective that could stand to be our first choice, instead of our last resort.
Once we experience our first “miracle” cure, that’s what it feels like when we nip a cold in the bud (“this stuff really works!”), we can start to explore the other realms of self-care, where herbs reign affordable, reliable, and thankfully, accessible. Working as fast and as well as pharmaceuticals without the side effects, we can begin to rely on plant medicine for a whole range of ailments, including preventative care.
According to the World Health Organization, 80% of the world’s population uses herbal medicine as part of their primary health care. This is what the rest of the world could learn from. When resources are limited and we want to cut down on doctor bills and drug costs, we can look to the plants around us, our grandmother’s wisdom, the pioneers of the herbal renaissance for making smart and effective products that we can find in our local health food stores.
For those of us wanting to make sustainable choices for our own longevity, herbs are useful, resourceful, powerful healing agents that are good for our bodies and for the planet.
Written by Marcie Goldman and Ryah Nabielski
The Student Study Savior.
As an over-worked, terminally exhausted student at the University of Colorado-Boulder, I am constantly searching for a new energy source to boost me through another drawn-out study session. Unfortunately, I often resort to caffeine to jump-start by mind which unfailingly results in an unavoidable energy crash accompanied with the characteristic caffeine jitters. Because I am especially susceptible to sleepless nights if I indulge my coffee habit late in the afternoon, I am an eager candidate for an energy alternative. Voila! Brain Food.
WishGarden Brain Food comes in a small, 1 oz. dropper bottle and packaged in an appealing “earthy” label with details of the herbal supplement’s benefits and ingredients. It claims to provide “mental clarity without stimulants,” as well as being an “excellent study aid & creative process support”. Brain Food was made with a stress-case like me in mind.
The ingredients include “Gotu Kola leaf, Ginkgo leaf, Siberian Ginseng root, Dandelion root & Prickly Ash bark” which is strongly reflected in the smell and taste. Although not the most favorable flavor, the supplement seems natural and refreshing. When used alone, the taste is strong and bitter but when mixed with water, the flavor is hardly recognizable and extremely pleasant.
So, does it work?
I have found that adding a few drops to my afternoon water canteen provides some welcome stimulation after my morning coffee buzz has died and the onset of a sugar-slump is imminent. The only times that I recognize the effects of the Brain Food is when my other resources are depleted. WishGarden Brain Food is certainly not a replacement for the energy in food but it is a welcome supplement when I need a natural pick-me-up.
Aside from hosting all-natural ingredients, WishGarden is also a Boulder-based company. Cutting the distribution costs (both environmental and physical) is also a good source for providing some metal clarity.
For more information on WishGarden’s line of all-natural herbal supplements, please visit there website.