UNCOMMON USES FOR THE COMMON DAISY

Who was to know that the Common Daisy, Bellis perennis is such an over-looked medicinal gem growing prolifically all around us. Who doesn’t love daisies?? When my children see the lawnmower coming out in summer, they throw themselves on the grass wailing “Noooo….. leave the daisies alone!!!” From the mouth of babes. 
 
Although it is not part of the material medica of the modern medical herbalist, Daisy has had a long history of medical use and has been the subject of recent interesting research, affirming its folk uses. Many of the chemical constituents present in the daisy have been the subject of research that indicates the source of many of the medical actions of plant. However, I recommend using herbs in their whole form because a natural synergy occurs and we reap the benefits of this, even if we can’t fully understand it. 
 
Having read from old herbal texts, recent research and folk stories I will...
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CAYENNE SALVE - THE NATURAL ANWSER TO DEEP HEAT!

Growing up in a house with a football and hurling obsessed father where the smell of Deep Heat was a regular, almost comforting aroma, when I first came across the recipe I share below I thought “Now that will give Deep Heat a run for its money!” 

There is so much to say about Cayenne Pepper. It was one of the first of many surprises I got when I began to study herbal medicine. Not being a fan of spices in general, and having no knowledge of them other than in cooking foods that my palette couldn’t handle, Cayenne Pepper what one hell of an eye opener as to how food can be medicine and in the most powerful of ways! Cardiovascular health, Pain Relief, digestion and metabolism. The list goes on. 

The health benefits of Cayenne deserves a whole article to its self but for today, I just want to share a herbal remedies recipe using this wonderful plant that is so simple anyone came make it and benefit from it. Paint by numbers and...

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HYDROTHERAPY FOR NATURAL HEALING

The indigenous peoples call it the First Medicine, it’s considered sacred in all the perennial wisdom traditions, being used as a Holy substance for blessing, healing and protection.  The medicinal use of it hails back to the times of Hippocrates, the Father of Modern medicine and has endured in many forms across cultures and through the ages.
 
Water – The most basic of human needs and rights. We, the privileged minority of humans who are lucky enough to have water delivered to our homes every day, tend to take this for granted. It is only when there are shortages, cut-offs, contamination and oh yes, water charges talked about that we begin to think about water and how essential it is for life as we know it. The use of water as a natural healing tool is something that most people aren’t conscious of and has lost its prominence with the advance of modern medicine. There are many ways to utilize this resource for our health on an ongoing basis as a...
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HAWTHORN - CRATAEGUS

HAWTHORN- CRATAEGUS

Botanical name: Crataegus oxyacantha
Family: Rosaceae
Parts used: leaves, flowers, berries
Properties: slightly cool/dry, cardiac trophorestorative, relaxing nervine, digestant, astringent, diuretic, antioxidant
Used for: heart related illness, cardiac weakness, stagnant digestion, regulation of blood pressure
Plant preparations: tea, tincture, vinegar, syrup, honey.
 
There is nothing that pleases me more than using native, abundant plants that are growing all around us and just waiting to restore health and balance to our bodies and minds. And this time of year is such a treat as “berry season” is in full swing.
 
Today I want to talk about our wonderful Hawthorn. Such a familiar presence in the Irish countryside, almost “common”, and also having a long medicinal history in the Eastern traditions and the American traditions. But what we often pass by is the incredible health food that it bears right...
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THE ORDERS OF LOVE

Working with people on both a physical and emotional healing level, there is one area that presents again and again as central to the healthy functioning of the individual. The Heart. On a physical level, when it stops functioning we die. On an emotional and energetic level, when its negatively impacted we disconnect and our relationship with those around us, the world a large and life itself can be hindered.

The Heart is always at the heart of the matter.
 
l recentIy wrote a piece on our abundant, native heart tonic Hawthorn – Crataegus. You can read about its benefits and how to use it here. I love to share when there are simple, local, abundant plants that nourish and strengthen our system on all levels, and it inevitably leads me to consider what other means can be used to tone and support us on a mind-body level.
 
As a natural healer, I’ve been trained to consider the emotion or energy that is connected to different organs in the body.
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POSITIVE MENTAL HEALTH – A NATURAL MIND-BODY APPROACH

Having worked therapeutically with people for many years, I have become all too familiar with the “revolving door” syndrome that can occur with people who struggle with mental health issues, particularly when prescription medication becomes the only solution on offer.
 
People tend to go up and down, in and out of that door until it gets to a point where the door is closed, locked and barricaded resulting in a life sentence of pills and more importantly a sense of disempowerment where people become victims of a choiceless situation.
 
Did you know that its estimated that 1 in 5 Irish people are on anti-depressant medication?
 
That is 20% of the population and does no include sleeping medications and anti-anxiety medication such as Xanax & Valium. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not an advocate of extremism in any form be it natural or pharmaceutical and there is most certainly a valid place for prescription medication. However, these statistics...
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3 Biggest Barriers to Sustainable Natural Health

Many people these days are looking to live a healthier life. There are the younger millennials who have grown up with a health and fitness conscious media and advertising industry where “healthy living” is marketed to within an inch of its life. 
 
Then there are the mummies. Now that they have little ones to be caring for and well lets just say, their energy and waistline are not what it used to be, suddenly they become aware of not only their own health and wellbeing but of the weight of responsibility for their children to boot.  
 
Last but not least there are the middle-aged upward population whose vincibility inevitably presents itself and the focus becomes how can I grow older with the best health, energy and least debilitation and illness possible?
 
Regardless of where you fit into this picture, the desire and drive is there to live the healthiest life possible. So why is it that its so bloody hard to stick with the plan??? I...
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Resourced & Resilient using Plant Medicine & Psychological Principles

There is much talk of resilience these days. The resilience of the children, what sectors of the economy are resilient in the face of Covid-19 and of course the need for resilience in the face of the mental health challenges that our current situation presents. 
 
So what exactly is resilience, how do we cultivate it and what do we need to be watching out for when it comes to keeping ourselves well resourced in the face of challenging times? 
 
The dictionary definition of resilience is - 
 
“ the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.”
 
So we're talking about the ability to bounce back, shoulder the burden, carry on carrying on.  Some of us naturally have more of this than others. Each person is unique in their strengths and areas of vulnerability. However what we do all have in common is the oppurtunity to build on, strengthen and expand our resources at any given time...
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ANTI-VIRAL HERBS – THERE IS SOMETHING YOU CAN TAKE TO HELP!!

I came across this blog post from my old site which was written about 3 years ago. Its a bit erie to say the least considering where we find ourselves now. I have left it unchanged as it still rings through and is like a bit of an echo chamber. Now more than ever we need to start taking charge of you health and wellbeing and not just be waiting till we get sick. 
 
DISCLAIMER: Herbs do not TREAT Covid-19 or any other illness. Herbal medicine supports the body in its natural processes to fight infection and come back to balance. 
 
                            _______________________________________
 
 
Having been away over the Christmas period, arriving home to headlines about flu epidemics, contact from schools urging us to keep our children home if they had any symptoms of sickness and general stress and panic about the level of debilitating viral infection doing the rounds, lets...
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GETTING THE GATEWAY READY

One of the fabulous benefits of having 9 months of pregnancy is that it gives us time to adjust and prepare for what is without a doubt one of the biggest transitions in life. The first trimester is often a time of wonder or maybe shock, excitement but with a mix of nerves, worry and anticipation of what's to come. 
 
Getting over that initial 12 week period for many is a huge relief, both from a safety perspective and physical comfort perspective. It often feels like your over a hump and able to get into your stride. Its a time to enjoy the life and the experience of carrying your baby. 
 
Most of us make a conscious effort to take good care of ourselves from the time we get pregnant until the baby is born. We are aware of the importance of good nutrition, gentle exercise and the minimising of stress and negativity. It can often be more challenging than one would think as knowing whats best and doing whats best are sometimes not that easy to align in reality!
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