Spice Up Your Health: Easy Natural Cures For Common Conditions
Try these common kitchen staples to cure everyday ailments at home in the time of coronavirus
From a toothache or insomnia to gastric distress or premature greying, everyday ailments can be a nuisance but the solutions are closer at hand than you think. Your kitchen cupboard is packed with easy and effective cures for a wide range of common health problems. Here’s a handy guide on how to use some of them. Remember that even natural cures can interact with medication. If you take pills regularly or have a chronic health condition, check with your doctor before trying these.
Mace has long been a traditional cure for gastrointestinal disorders—a mace and lemon herbal tea taken three to four times a day can alleviate gastric distress. Mace is also an effective remedy for halitosis (bad breath)—boil one teaspoon of crushed mace in 200 ml water; add 10 mint leaves and allow it to steep for 5 minutes. Gargle with this twice a day.
Black pepper is a jack-of-many-trades herbal remedy, used for a gamut of ailments, including digestive disorders, toothaches, earaches, insomnia, hernia, joint pains, liver and lung disease.
One teaspoon of a mix comprising two parts ginger juice,two parts fennel powder,half part powdered black pepper, one part turmeric powder and four parts mint powder, mixed with a few drops of honey and ghee,first thing in the morning can fight upper respiratory tract infections. Insomniacs can get some restful sleep by drinking a cup of warm milk with a pinch of pepper powder and turmeric powder an hour before bedtime.
The aptly named star anise pods come from the evergreen plant Illicium verum. A much sought-after ingredient for its licorice-like flavour, this spice is also known for its many health benefits. For example, one teaspoon of star anise powder added to a 200-gm-mix of sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chironji and walnuts can improve memory. Grind the mix into a coarse powder and have one teaspoon at breakfast. Store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator. Star anise and ginger tea taken morning and night helps alleviate asthma and bronchitis.
Myristicin, a natural organic compound in nutmeg, inhibits the production of the enzyme that promotes Alzheimer’s. Apart from its beneficial effect on memory and sleep, it also resolves digestive issues—four tablespoons of apple juice with a pinch of nutmeg powder taken an hour before dinner will improve one’s appetite.
Curry Leaves (kadi patta)
Curry leaves are a great addition to meals as much for their health benefits as their distinct aroma and taste. Rich in vitamin A, calcium, iron and amino acids, they can reverse premature greying. Here’s how: boil 20 curry leaves, one chopped amla and five guava leaves in 200 ml pure coconut oil. Let them turn black in the oil, turn off the heat, cover and let cool. Pass the oil through a muslin cloth and store in a dark-coloured bottle. Use this oil on your scalp once a week.
Check out more natural remedies from this author here later this week.
Charmaine D’Souza is a health and nutrition consultant with more than 25 years of experience in the field. She is the author of Kitchen Clinic, and Blood Sugar and Spice. Visit http://www.goodhealthalways.in/ to learn more.