FOLK MEDs : Honey, Garlic, Pumpkin Seeds…

 

Sometimes old ways are superior to drugstore remedies. (BadPharma would prefer these approaches were forgotten, working diligently to discredit them, according to careful investigations by Dr. Ben Goldacre.) ¶ A recent study reported that raw honey (miel cruda) outperformed numerous commercial cough remedies. I’ve taken to gargling with raw honey, straight—no chaser, at the slightest tickle. (Don’t rinse the potency away.) There are plenty of recipes online that add other stuff to honey, which seems silly to me, as this is already perfect product. And there’s science behind this product of nature. (But don’t use it to treat infants, or children under two.)

Sometimes old ways are superior to drugstore remedies. (BadPharma would prefer these approaches were forgotten, working diligently to discredit them, according to careful investigations by Dr. Ben Goldacre.) A recent study reported that raw honey (miel cruda) outperformed numerous commercial cough remedies. I’ve taken to gargling with raw honey, straight-no chaser, at the slightest tickle. (Don’t rinse the goodness away.) There are plenty of recipes online that add other stuff, which seems silly to me, as this is a perfect product. And there’s science behind this product of nature. (But don’t use it to treat infants, or children under two.)

Sometimes old ways are superior to drugstore remedies. (BadPharma would prefer these approaches were forgotten, working diligently to discredit them, according to careful investigations by Dr. Ben Goldacre.) A recent study reported that raw honey (miel cruda) outperformed numerous commercial cough remedies. I’ve taken to gargling with raw honey, straight-no chaser, at the slightest tickle. (Don’t rinse the goodness away.) There are plenty of recipes online that add other stuff, which seems silly to me, as this is a perfect product. And there’s science behind this product of nature. (But don’t use it to treat infants, or children under two.)Sometimes old ways are superior to drugstore remedies. (BadPharma would prefer these approaches were forgotten, working diligently to discredit them, according to careful investigations by Dr. Ben Goldacre.) A recent study reported that raw honey (miel cruda) outperformed numerous commercial cough remedies. I’ve taken to gargling with raw honey, straight-no chaser, at the slightest tickle. (Don’t rinse the goodness away.) There are plenty of recipes online that add other stuff, which seems silly to me, as this is a perfect product. And there’s science behind this product of nature. (But don’t use it to treat infants, or children under two.)

Mayan pumpkins (calabasa)

Next we come to the mineral, zinc. This essential mineral is best consumed as nuts and seeds, instead of as processed supplements. Pumpkin seeds (pepitas; seeds from the cucurbita family) come from locally grown calabasas. (I buy pepitas at Slow Food Market on Saturdays, Reforma at c.33-d; 9am-1pm.) Pepitas are high in zinc, according to Dr Andrew Weil. A fascinating article about the modern discovery of the health import of zinc appeared at npr (National Public Radio). There is some question in my mind about the availability of zinc in Yucatan soils, but I don’t have access to the research article (which US taxpayers likely funded). Walnuts (nueces de castilla)are another healthy source of zinc, offering significant additional benefits (see two-year nurses study).

Homegrown garlic from western NY state.

Garlic bulbs with untrimmed roots, I’m told, indicate that it is locally grown, as the Chinese trim roots severely for shipping. Key to using garlic both as a flavor additive in cooking, and as a treatment, is oxidation, caused by smashing. Use the flat of a large knife, pounding with your fist to crush the garlic tooth; peel, and let it sit for a few minutes to oxidize. If for treatment, slice into slivers to swallow (without chewing)! Garlic is a healthy additive with many surprising benefits as indicated by these numerous mentions at Dr Weil’s blog.

From the same blog, Weil’s colleague, Dr Low Dog (her real name!) offers this excerpt, on respiratory homecare:  “I’d say upper respiratory infections, coughs and sore throats are at the top of the list. For these alone, we spend a fortune on antibiotics, over-the-counter prescriptions and health care visits. Yet there are simple steps you can take at home for pennies. One of the simplest ways to ease a sore throat is to gargle with sage and saltwater, which is both soothing and has wonderful antimicrobial effects. Studies have also shown that a sage and echinacea gargle is as effective as lidocaine for relieving the pain of a sore throat.  ¶  “You may not realize this, but according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the number one illness-related reason for visits to physicians in the U.S. is for cough. There are definitely many herbs that can address this common and annoying problem. My favorite is thyme – an amazing cough suppressant. It tastes delicious, and the science shows it has potent tracheal and laryngeal anti-spasmodic action. Honey is also very good. Honey alone has been shown to be a more effective cough suppressant for children than many over-the-counter medications. When you combine thyme and honey – I show various ways to do that in the book – you end up with a highly effective cough remedy.“ 

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