Spring is a time of renewal, growth, and transformation. As the world awakens from its winter slumber, we too can take this opportunity to refresh our bodies and minds. One way to do this is by creating a spring apothecary, filled with natural remedies to support our health and well-being. Here are some things to consider keeping in your spring apothecary:
Nettle tea: Nettle is a nutrient-dense herb that is particularly beneficial during the spring months due to its natural antihistamine properties and its ability to reduce allergy symptoms. It is also known for its ability to support the liver and kidneys, helping to detoxify the body after winter. Nettle tea is also rich in antioxidants, which can help reduce inflammation and support the immune system.
Butterweed: Butterweed has been traditionally used to treat digestive issues such as bloating, gas, and stomach pain. It has anti-inflammatory properties that can be helpful in treating conditions like arthritis and other inflammatory disorders.
Eleuthero: Eleuthero, also known as Siberian ginseng, is a medicinal plant that is native to Asia. It is an adaptogen that is often used to support physical and mental endurance. Eleuthero is also thought to have immune-enhancing and anti-inflammatory properties.
Elderflower: The delicate white flowers of the elderberry plant have been used for centuries to support respiratory health. Elderflower tea is a soothing remedy for allergies and sinus congestion, both of which are common in the spring.
Dandelion root: Dandelion root is another herb that is particularly beneficial for the liver and kidneys. It is a natural diuretic, which can help to flush toxins from the body. Dandelion root tea is also rich in vitamins and minerals, making it a nourishing tonic for the whole body.
Schisandra: Schisandra is a medicinal berry that is native to China and Russia. It is an adaptogenic herb that is often used to support the liver and promote overall vitality. Schisandra is also thought to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Lavender essential oil: Lavender is a calming and grounding herb that can help to reduce stress and anxiety. It is also a natural antihistamine, which can be useful for those with seasonal allergies. Diffusing lavender essential oil in your home or adding a few drops to your bath can be a simple yet effective way to promote relaxation and ease.
Cleavers: Cleavers, also known as stickyweed or goosegrass, is a common weed that is often found growing in damp areas. It is a gentle herb that is traditionally used to support the lymphatic system, which can be especially beneficial during the spring months when allergies and congestion are common.
Lemon balm: Lemon balm is a gentle herb that has a calming effect on the nervous system. It is also known for its antiviral properties, making it a useful remedy for colds and flu. Lemon balm tea is a refreshing and soothing drink that can be enjoyed throughout the day.
Goldenrod: Goldenrod is a flowering plant that is often used as a natural remedy for seasonal allergies. It is thought to have anti-inflammatory and antihistamine properties, making it a useful herb for reducing allergy symptoms such as sneezing and congestion
Peppermint essential oil: Peppermint is a refreshing herb that can help to clear the mind and invigorate the senses. It is also useful for digestive issues, such as bloating and indigestion. Adding a few drops of peppermint essential oil to a diffuser or inhaling it directly from the bottle can help to promote mental clarity and digestive health.
Chickweed: Chickweed is a common weed that is often found growing in gardens and lawns. It is a gentle herb that is traditionally used to support the skin and promote healthy digestion. Chickweed is also thought to have anti-inflammatory properties, making it a useful herb for spring allergies and skin issues.
Red clover: Red clover is a flowering plant that is often used as a natural remedy for respiratory issues such as coughs and bronchitis. It is also thought to support the liver and lymphatic system, making it a useful herb for spring cleansing.
Calendula salve: Calendula is a healing herb that is particularly beneficial for the skin. It has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, making it useful for a variety of skin issues, including eczema, psoriasis, and acne. Calendula salve can be applied topically to soothe and heal the skin.
Butterbur: used for centuries to treat allergies and migraines. It has been shown to have natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties.
Reishi Mushroom: contains compounds called triterpenes, which have been shown to have natural anti-inflammatory effects. It can also help regulate the immune system and has antihistamine compounds.
Ginkgo Biloba: contains compounds called flavonoids and terpenoids, which have been shown to have natural anti-inflammatory effects. It's also antioxidant and a natural antihistamine.
Ginger: has natural anti-inflammatory properties.
Turmeric: has natural anti-inflammatory properties.
Quercetin is a flavonoid that is found in many fruits, vegetables, and other foods. Here are some foods that are particularly high in quercetin:
Onions: the best dietary sources of quercetin, with red onions having the highest concentration. Eating raw onions or lightly cooked onions can increase the bioavailability of quercetin.
Apples: another good source of quercetin, particularly the skin of the apple. Eating an apple a day can provide a significant amount of quercetin. "An apple a day keeps the doctor away."
Berries: blueberries, cranberries, and raspberries are high in quercetin, as well as other beneficial compounds like anthocyanins and vitamin C.
Citrus fruits: oranges, lemons, and grapefruits are good sources of quercetin, especially the pulp and inner white membrane.
Leafy greens: swiss chard, spinach, and broccoli are also high in quercetin.
Tomatoes: they contain quercetin in their skin and flesh. Cooked tomatoes, such as in tomato sauce or paste, contain even higher levels of quercetin due to the concentration of the nutrient during cooking.
Green tea: high in quercetin, as well as other polyphenols that have been associated with various health benefits.
Creating a spring apothecary can be a fun and rewarding way to support your health and well-being during the spring months. Whether you choose to grow and harvest your own herbs or purchase them from a trusted source, incorporating natural remedies into your daily routine can help you feel revitalized and renewed.