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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

How-To-Tuesday -Taking Herbs

One of the most frequent questions/comments I get is: I really want (honest) to use herbs, but I don't know how. I'm going to show you one way to take herbs...if fact, it's one of the BEST ways to actually get the good stuff from herbs into your body. It's called


Making an infusion is so stinkin' simple you'll wonder why you haven't been doing it all along.

You will need:

a quart jar complete with lid
herb of choice (more on that later)
boiling water

That's it. See how simple?

Fill the quart jar about 2/3s full of dried herb
Pour on just-under boiling water
Screw on lid.

Wow, Elizabeth, didn't know it was THAT easy! I hear that a lot, too.

Let it sit on your kitchen counter a minimum of four hours--overnight is ideal. Think of it as a really REALLY strong tea. You want to get all those juicy, healthy consituents, all those vitamins and minerals out of the herb and into the water. (Actually, you are not geting ALL of the good stuff out. We'll do that another day.)

After what I call the "stewing" time (4-8 hrs), strain the herb off, throw it in your compost pile (what? you don't compost? Well do that another day, too). Now, you have several helpings of all that nice herby liquid. Green goodness. Refrigerate your quart jar of liquid health, keep the lid on. It will keep around 36+ hours in the frig.

At this point you have several options.

You can drink a glass now, but most folks want it either hot or cold, not somewhere in between! A cup a day trumps a synthetic vitamin in any universe. You can add honey and/or lemon to up the "palatableness". You can add it to other juices you drink (oj, tomato, grape, etc). Be creative!

You can pour it into ice cube trays and freeze. This is great to pop into smoothies or any cold drink; you can even throw the cubes into soups/broths while cooking. Or, freeze into "herb pops" for the kids. Sneaky mom.

Which herb to use? Today, let's start with oatstraw (same as oatgrass). I love this herb. It is a wonderful restorative NERVE tonic. It gently works with stress, exhaustion, grief, any nervous condition. With regular use it reduces inflammation. It's a great balancing herb for female cycles and strong bones.

It is VERY high in chromium (a great blood sugar balancer), magnesium (you need this for your calcium to work & oatstraw is the BEST source of it) and silicon (good nails, ladies! It is high in calcium, fiber, niacin & vitamin A. It has average amounts of iron, phosphorus, riboflavin, selenium, thiamine and vitamin C. Plus oatstraw has trace amounts of many other nutrients.

I love infusions because they are so ABSORBALE and USABLE by our bodies. Plants know where to go inside our bodies and what to do when they get there. Hmmm, just the way the Creator intended! Plus, herb infusions give us BALANCED nutrients which is so much healthier than taking them singly.

Oatstraw is fairly common; you should be able to find it at any herb store. I also have it HERE

Green Blessings, and if you have any questions...ask away! :)

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