Medical

Foraging Feral Food: Trout Lily

by Todd Walker

Foraging Feral Food: The Trout Lily

Craving feral food? Now’s the time to hit the woods. The Trout Lily is blooming!

Before going wild on this gem of the woodland, you should have an introduction to this short-lived blooming beauty.

In the creek bottom near the shelter I’m building, the forest floor is covered with a yellow carpet of trout lilies. They are known to grow in huge colonies that can be hundreds of years old. The bulbed plant takes about seven years to produce a one-leafed plant. A two-leafed plant with a yellow flower on top of its red stem is a mature plant.

Its scientific name is Eryhronium americanum. You may know them by other common names: Fawn lily, Deer tongue, Adder’s tongue, or Dog’s-tooth violet. Someone along the way said the grayish green leaves with purplish brown spots resembled a brook trout.

The Dog’s-tooth handle was a mystery to me though. Nothing about the plant above ground shouted ‘dog’ or ‘tooth’. Upon digging a lily from the ground, the bulb (corm) resembles a dog’s canine tooth. The corm is edible and tastes sweet in early spring. By May the bulb has turned starchy.

The entire plant is edible and has medicinal uses. Be aware that the plant is considered an emetic – too much will cause vomiting. And they take seven years to mature, so only harvest sparingly from large colonies. A mature plant produces two mottled leaves and one flower. At this rate of growth, you can why it takes hundreds of years to grow a huge colony.

Medicinal Uses

  • Native American women ate raw leaves to prevent conception
  • Root tea to reduce fever
  • Poultice from the crom is used to draw splinters and reduce swelling
  • Leave poultice is used on hard to heal ulcers and skin conditions
  • Fresh or dried leaves soften skin – always test for allergic reaction on a small area of your skin
  • From the early to mid Nineteenth century the plant was used to treat gout

 Edible Uses

  • The flower, leaves, and bulb are edible
  • Mass quantities will cause you to throw up – take it easy on them, unless you need to vomit
  • Crom/bulb can be roasted – raw they have a cucumber taste
  • Flowers are slightly sweet due to their nectar
  • Leaf tea
  • Ground croms can be used as a thickening agent for cooking

Other Uses

  • Native Americans chewed the bulb and spit the juice water to attract fish
Foraging Feral Food: The Trout Lily

The view across the creek at my shelter

Identification

Flower: The yellow Trout lily produces a single, nodding flower with six pedals. The flower closes at night and opens in the day light. The flower has both male and female sex organs.

Leaves: This perennial produces one to two lance-shaped leaves. A one leaf plant has not yet matured. Give it a year or seven. The stem of the plant is brownish-red.

Crom/bulb: The mature bulb resembles a dog’s canine tooth and is covered with a brown paper-like skin. Peel the skin before eating raw.

Habitat: In North America, Trout lilies grow in moist, rich soils in the eastern deciduous woodlands from Georgia to Canada.

Get out and enjoy this lily while you can. The blooms only last through spring.

Hope this was useful as you get some dirt time in this year.

Keep Doing the Stuff,

Todd

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Categories: Bushcraft, Doing the Stuff, Medical, Natural Health, Wildcrafting | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Herbal Medicine Kit: Preparations for Internal Use

Part 2 in our Herbal Medicine Kit series. See the other posts in this series at the end of this article.

by Kat Yorba

Kat Yorba

Kat Yorba

Herbs: “Trees, shrubs, mushrooms lichens and fruits & vegetables that have medicinal properties…or ALL medicinal and cosmetic plants as herbs.”

Welcome Back

There are countless different herbs and as many different combinations of herbs that are used for our good health and healing.  Thankfully, there are only a few basic and different types of preparations that are used in treating illnesses and wounds.

These preparations take dried or fresh herbs and transform them into life giving medicine that can be taken internally in the form of teas, capsules and the like, or applied topically such as salves, oils, bath salts and compresses.

Sometimes you will use both methods of preparation for a single herb with differing expected outcomes such as using St. John’s wort to make capsules and also a salve.  The nature of your ailment will ultimately determine your preparation.

Ingredients for your various preparations can be obtained from a variety of sources:

  • Your own kitchen/back yard
  • Harvesting from the wild
  • Your whole foods market
  • Your local Herb Store
  • Online Herbal Supply Companies (links will be provided for who I use)
  • Recycle & Re-use containers

For most of your preparations the supplies you will need on hand are quite basic and once you purchase or acquire them, you can get a lot of use for quite a long time out of them!

  • Quart Mason Jars, Pint Jars, Recycle sauce & salsa jars**
  • Amber or Blue 2 oz. bottles with droppers
  • Labels
  • Strainer OR Cheesecloth
  • Herbs (of course)
  • Liquid of Choice (Alcohol, Glycerin)
  • Beeswax, Olive Oil, Shea Butter, Almond oil, Apricot Oil, Oils of your preference, clays
  • Cheesecloth or Muslin for compresses
  • Capsules (capsule maker-inexpensive, will provide links)
  • Honey, Vinegar
  • Re-fillable tea bags OR Tea Spoon/ball

Image source

Now lets look at various basic Preparations for Internal Use…

Preparations for Internal Use

Glycerites

Glycerites provide an alcohol-free alternative to the popular tincture in which the herbs properties are extracted with alcohol.  Glycerine is used to create a Glycerite…the Glycerine extracts the herbs medicinal properties instead of alcohol.  Glycerin has a syrupy consistency and is sweet, but does not affect the blood sugar like honey/sugar can.

There are two types of Glycerin; one derived from animal fat, a by-product of soap making and the other is derived from vegetable oil.  Animal fat Glycerin is sold in Pharmacies, vegetable oil Glycerin can be found at Natural Food Stores.  Be careful, there is also a petroleum Glycerin becoming more and more available!

Average dosage for Glycerite: 30 drops or ¼ tsp. to ½ dropper-full.

Dosage should be diluted in water, tea or juice as irritation may develop.  Glycerites are not as potent as tinctures and are more expensive than teas.

They are easy to prepare and make other preparations from such as syrups.

Capsules/Pills

Capsules or pills release their herbal contents in the stomach as they dissolve.  They provide an easy way to take herbs without the bitter aftertaste.

They are slower acting and generally less potent than tinctures.  But armed with a variety of intake can be an excellent addition to your arsenal come cold/flu or allergy season.  Hit illness with all fronts, I say!

Pills are more convenient when feeling really, really ill as they do not require preparation such as teas would.  They are also easily portable to work or school so you would be able to keep up with your remedies on the go.

After purchasing empty capsules and a capsule maker, your Herbal Capsule selection is only limited by your creativity…not your herbal/whole food store of choice’s availability!

The typical capsule is comparable to half a cup of tea or 1/6th of an ounce of herbs.

Syrups

A syrup is a tincture, liquid extract, glycerite or sometimes even a very strong tea.  All are normally sweetened with sugar, honey or glycerin.  I prefer honey for the added benefits honey brings to the table, however if you have issues with your blood sugar glycerin would be an excellent choice for you.  Also any preparation made with honey should NOT be given to children under the age of 2)

Syrups make ideal cough syrups as it coats and soothes the throat.

Syrups herbal content can be lower due to dilution, the average dosage is 1 TBSP.

Teas

Teas are the simplest and least expensive way to prepare herbs.  A cup of tea only costs a few pennies.  The typical dosage is usually 1 tsp per Cup and 1 C. 3-4 times a day.  That’s roughly 6-10 cents a day!  Some tea remedies are fever reducing teas and work only when taken as a hot tea because of the heat promoting sweat.  Tea does have certain advantages…forcing you to be still, quiet and relax for the few minutes your are partaking of it’s health benefits.  But it can also be a hard cup to swallow when the herbs that will help you are strong, bitter and foul smelling!

Methods:

Infusion:

Pouring hot water over herbs and allowing to steep for 5-10 minutes either in cup or kettle.  Flower and leaves are the usual herbal ingredients.

Decoction:

Gently simmering herbs in a pot of water for 15-30 minutes. Roots and bark are the usual herbal ingredients here.  Keep heat low and cover with lead to keep all of the essential oils in the tea.

Cold Infusion:

Soaking herbs in cold water for 8 hours or more. Delicate fragrant herbs are used in this infusion.  In this manner they do not lose their essential oils.

Tinctures

Tinctures are a concentrated liquid for of herbal medicine.  A tincture is easy to carry with you, easily to take and needs no refrigeration.  It will keep for years as well.  With tinctures it is easier to take those strong tasting and smelling herbal preparations especially when you need large doses.

Average dosage: 30 drops, ¼ tsp or half a dropper-full.

The liquid medium of choice for tinctures is alcohol which draws out very important properties from the herbs.  It also extracts compounds which are not water-soluble.  Making a tincture requires no heat which means that precious essential oils are retained.

Tinctures are more costly than tea…about 35-40 cents a dose, or a couple bucks a day.  But there is something to be said for convenience!

If alcohol is a concern for you then you can eliminate much of the alcohol by dropping a dose of the tincture into a cup of hot boiling water or tea.  The alcohol will evaporate behind.

Vinegars

Herbal Vinegars are prepared like Tinctures, using vinegar to infuse the herbs instead of alcohol.

Most Herbal Vinegars are made for culinary use, however an herbal vinegar is easy to make and can be used as an additional weapon in your arsenal when combating illness such as sore throat…use as a gargle!  It can also be used quite effectively externally as a hair rinse or skin wash for fungal infections or even perhaps as a douche for yeast and other infections.

Typical dosage: 1-2 tsp.

That concludes our look at Preparations for Internal Use.  Next post we will cover Preparations for External Use and give you a shopping list for your first recipes!

Here are resource links that may help you in gathering ingredients for upcoming preparations…

Resources for Ingredients On-Line

Mountain Rose Herbs

Herbs, Essential Oils, Packaging, Equipment,

Bulk products such as clays.

From Nature With Love

Same as Mountain Rose

Capsule Connection

I suggest 00 size which is smaller, this is what I purchased…0 is a bigger capsule, okay if you are used to taking larger pills.  You can find various capsule machines and empty capsules on Amazon when doing a search…this is just a suggestion.

The Bulk Herb Store

Same as Mountain Rose and FNWL

StarWest Botanicals

Starwest Botanicals is your on-line supply source for bulk herbs and natural products. Dried herbs, organic herbs, bulk spices, loose leaf organic teas, organic essential oils and aromatherapy supplies are part of the nearly 3000 natural products to choose from at Starwest Botanicals.

About Kat Yorba: I am a “red-neck country wife” to one wonderfully amazing man, mother to many outrageous children, daughter of the ONE Glorious God. Learning to be more self-reliant & self-sufficient in a semi-homemade, homesteading way! Connect with Kat on her blog, Simply Living SimplyFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Google+.

Go-to Herbal Medicine Kit series

Part 1: Go Herbal: Putting Together Your Go-To Herbal Medicine Kit

Copyright Information: Content on this site (unless the work of a third-party) may be shared freely, in part or whole, with a link back to this site crediting the author. If you are interested a third-party article, please contact the author directly for republishing information.

Thanks for sharing the stuff!

 

Categories: Doing the Stuff, First Aid, Herbal Remedies, Homeopathy, Medical | Tags: , , | 7 Comments

21 Home Remedies for a Toothache

[Editor's note] I’ve put off getting my bottom wisdom teeth pulled for about 20 years. I had my top two removed 10 years back and had planned to remove the bottom as they look like the x-ray below.

They get sore occasionally. Nothing too bad. DRG will tell you I put up with pain to avoid doctors and pharmaceuticals. I need to schedule an appointment for this ‘elective’ surgery before it becomes emergency surgery at a most inopportune time. Until then, these home remedies will get me through.  

Today’s post first appeared on Survival Life and is republished here with the author’s permission. Check out Joe’s bio at the end of the article.  

By 

impacted teeth x ray

This week I had to write my article a little ahead of time as I will be out of the office for a few days.

I went for an annual cleaning at my dentist and a routine X-ray showed that my lower wisdom teeth had turned sideways and were now completely impacted.

I had put it off long enough and it was finally time to schedule in to get them removed.  I was lucky this time that they hadn’t caused me any pain and have not started to damage my other teeth, but I really started to think and I realized one very important thing…

You can’t schedule a toothache and it never fails that a major toothache hits when it’s late at night and your dentist’s office is closed, or you’re somewhere remote and getting to a dentist any time soon is just not an option.

Anyone who has ever had the misfortune of a toothache knows that it is not just your mouth that hurts.

A toothache can be felt in just about every part of your body.  I have had a few so bad that they made me sick to my stomach from the pain alone.

Although in most cases only a doctor can cure the source of the problem, this list of treatments & pain relief remedies should get you through until you can visit the dentist.

It is important to note: If you have a toothache, there is a reason for it and it’s best to have it taken care of by a professional as soon as possible, rather than having it treated at home in hopes that the underlying issue will go away on its own. If it’s infected (if your gum area is swollen), don’t delay in getting professional medical care.

Directions: Apply the below remedies directly to both the problem tooth and surrounding gums unless otherwise directed.

For items that direct you to chew, or for liquids that are to be swished around inside mouth, direct the liquid on and around the sore tooth as much as possible.

Do not swallow liquids. Rinse your mouth and spit them out when done.

  1. Salt Water: Mix a heaping tablespoon full of salt in a small glass of warm water; swirl around inside your mouth for as long as you can, spit out. Repeat as needed.
  2. Hydrogen Peroxide: Swoosh a bit of hydrogen peroxide. If the taste is too horrid for you, try diluting with a bit of water.
  3. Alcohol: Swoosh a bit of whiskey, scotch, brandy or vodka. A strong mouthwash that contains alcohol will do the trick too.
  4. Vanilla Extract: Saturate a cotton ball with vanilla and hold in place. Can also use a cotton swab dipped in extract.
    Other extracts that have the same effect are:
    Almond Extract
    Peppermint Extract
    & Lemon Extract
  5. Tea Tree Oil: Just a drop or two will do the trick. You can also add some to a cotton swab and hold in place or add a few drops of tea tree oil to a small glass of lukewarm to warm water and rinse your mouth with it.
  6. Oil Of Oregano: Mix a few drops with a bit of olive oil, then saturate a cotton ball with mixture. Can replace the olive oil with lukewarm water if preferred.
  7. Apple Cider Vinegar: Soak a cotton ball with apple cider vinegar (ACV) and hold it in place. Can also try regular household vinegar.
  8. Ginger Root: Take a fresh piece of ginger and chew it a bit.
  9. Garlic: Take a clove of garlic, smash it and apply (settle it inside cheek). You can also mash some garlic with salt.
  10. Peppermint Leaves: Chew on fresh peppermint leaves. You can also dried leaves, just hold them in place.
  11. Potato: Cut a fresh piece of potato (raw, skin off) and hold in place. Can also pound a piece of raw potato, mix in a bit of salt and use the mash.
  12. Lime: Cut a slice or wedge of lime and apply, bite into it if you can to release some of the juice.
  13. Onion: Slice a piece of fresh onion and hold it inside your mouth. The onion needs to be freshly cut (so it provides a bit of onion juice).
  14. Plantain: Chew up a fresh plantain leaf. If you’re too sore to chew, use the other side of your mouth. Once the leaf is macerated a bit apply it to the problem area and hold in place.
  15. Cucumber: Slice a fresh piece of cucumber and hold it over the sore area. If refrigerated, you might want to bring the cucumber to room temperature before using (if sensitive to cold) otherwise a cool piece can be soothing.You can also mash a piece with a bit of salt and pack it around the sore tooth.
  16. Cayenne Pepper: Make a paste with cayenne pepper and water.
  17. Black Pepper: You can use this full strength or make a mix of pepper and salt.
  18. Baking Soda: Take a cotton swab and moisten it with a bit of water, dip it in baking soda (coat the swab really well with baking soda) then apply. You can also make a mouth rinse by mixing a heaping spoonful of baking soda in a small glass of lukewarm to warm water, dissolve the soda then swish the mixture in your mouth.
  19. Cloves: This is remedy from the old timers (my great grandparents), rest a clove against the sore area until pain goes away. You can also use a drop or two of clove oil (BE CAREFUL: too much can be toxic) or make a thick paste of ground cloves and water or ground cloves and olive oil.
  20. Tea: Make a fresh cup of tea then take the used tea bag (still warm) and stick it in your mouth. Careful not to tear the bag. The tannins that are naturally in tea leaves can help numb things.
  21. Ice Pack: Cover an ice pack with a face cloth or towel then hold over your cheek where the problem is. This will help numb things. Make sure that you have some type of cloth between your skin and the ice, otherwise you can severely damage your skin.If that doesn’t work, try the opposite–a hot compress (making sure that it is not so hot as to scald your skin).

Tips

  • If the pain is unbearable and there’s no dentist available, call your local hospital’s emergency room–chances are they have a dentist on call that can treat you (for a fee of course).
  • Try gently brushing your teeth and flossing–this might bring some relief.
  • One old-time remedy that you should not follow is to place an aspirin against the sore tooth.  You will have just as much if not more of an effect by swallowing the aspirin.Aspirin is actually an acid (acetylsalicylic acid to be exact) and placing it directly against your gums or teeth will cause corrosion of your teeth and acid burns on your gums.
  • If the side of your face is in severe pain and it feels like you’re going to lose your mind (I’ve been there, done that)–it could be a sinus infection or an allergy that affects your sinuses rather than a problem tooth (even though it definitely feels like it).Try taking a decongestant or if that is not available, a shower set on the hottest setting may help clear your sinus cavities.This might help relieve things until you get to a doctor. Chances are a prescription antibiotic is what you’ll need to clear up the sinus infection.

    If it is a sinus infection please don’t wait to get it taken care of!  I have permanent damage to my left eardrum from a sinus infection that became so congested it literally burst my eardrum as a pressure relief valve.

Have I missed any of your tried-and-true methods to relieve tooth and gum pain?

Please share it below in the comments section.

Please be aware: These are notes I have collected in my personal life over the years, in my own research as well as tips gathered from my grandparents and great grandparents.

They are not by any means professional medical advice and a trained dentist should always be contacted as soon as possible.

P.S. If you have a toothache it may be in your best interest  to go on a soft food diet until you get to the dentist.

Click here to see what I ate for days after my surgery that has earned a permanent spot in my pantry.

About ‘Above Average’ Joe: 

I am the managing editor of Survivallife.com I am just an average guy with an exceptional passion for learning. I am excited to share the things I learn with you but I am most interested in learning from you. Survival Life is more than just one man. It is a growing and living community of individuals; all with the desire to be prepared to survive and thrive no matter what this world throws at us. I look forward to growing with you! Feel free to follow me on facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest

Categories: Herbal Remedies, Homeopathy, Medical, Preparedness | Tags: , | 16 Comments

Once Bitten Twice Shy: Taking the Sting Out of Yellow Jackets

by Todd Walker

I’m typing this post with a very swollen left hand.

I’ve always reacted badly to insect bites. While putting up a wooden fence for a friend yesterday, I disturbed a yellow jacket nest in a bed of ivy. One power-packing bugger hit my in the knee. I killed it and ran about 10 feet away. Then one hit my left hand. I hightailed it away from the area. Fortunately, I only ended up with two stings.

One yellow jacket sting to my left hand and one on my right knee - pictured below.

One yellow jacket sting to my left hand and one on my right knee – pictured below.

wasp sting kneeKnowing my reaction to wasp stings, I started walking the yard to find my favorite remedy, plantain leaves. I quickly chewed a few to activate the goodness and applied the greenery on my bites. The plantain immediately worked to relieve the stinging. The painful sting was not my biggest concern. The swelling and reaction worried me.

The Band Aid I used to hold the plantain on my knee lasted all of 3 minutes before coming off. Sweat and Band Aids don’t mix well. I used medical tape from my first aid kit to secure the natural remedy to my hand. I put my gloves on and went back to work.

Now for the unprepared part.

I didn’t have Benadryl in my work/construction kit. Bad move, Todd! I keep antihistamine meds in all my other kits (hunting, backpacking, get home bag, etc.), but failed to pack any in my construction kit.

Had I been stung multiple times, a hospital/doctor visit would have been necessary. Dirt Road Girl gave me Benedryl when I got home that afternoon with an added dose of lecturing about my not being prepared. My wasp encounter left me uncomfortable, but could have been worse.

Tips to avoid and treat stings

1.) Avoidance –  This is the obvious choice. But sometimes you encounter them anyway. What to look for when outdoors:

Photo credit

  • Eastern Yellow Jacket – Yellowish with black bands around its body. Only 3/8 to 5/8 of an inch in length, their smooth stingers, unlike honeybee’s barbed stingers, allow them to inject painful venom in victims multiple times.
  • They build underground nests in cool, shaded areas.
  • When disturbed, their attack zone is about 15 feet from their nest. They will get in your clothes and continue their stinging assault. Steer clear if at all possible!
  • These wasps are actually valuable to have around when they’re not mad at you. Their beneficial in that they kill and eat spiders, caterpillars, and other garden pests. They forage up to one mile from their nest. 
  • They’re fond of sweet stuff. You’ll see them hovering over sweets, meats, and sugary drinks at picnics. Stay away from an area if you notice yellow jackets flying in and out of the ground. 
  • Avoid wearing brightly colored clothing, scented perfumes, and ‘girly’ smelling body soap. These strong odors and flashy colors attract wasps and bees.

If you are allergic to stinging insects, take precautions before you have a run in with these dangerous pests protecting their turf! An allergic reaction happens when your body over-defends against the venom.

2.) Treating stings

The key to reducing damage from wasp stings is to treat them as soon as possible.

Immediately after being stung, I started looking for plantain. I applied it as quickly as I could chew it. Even getting it on that soon, my hand and knee are still swollen and itchy.

For folks that are extremely allergic to the venom, I recommend seeking immediate medical attention. Serious allergic reaction symptoms include:

  • Difficulty swallowing or breathing
  • Slowed speech
  • Tightness in the throat or chest area
  • Fainting
  • Losing consciousness
  • Anaphylaxis

People have died from mass envenomation from stinging insects. If you are aware of serious allergic reactions from venom, have your doctor prescribe epinephrine (adrenaline) injecting devices and carry them it in all your kits, home, and office.

Remedies and treatments for mild reactions from stings:

  • Topical and oral antihistamines work to help reduce inflammation and itching. Scratching the itchy sting site could introduce bacteria into the skin and cause infection.
  • If you have cold presses or ice available, apply 10 minutes on and ten minutes off (repeat as necessary) to help reduce the itching and swelling.
  • Plantain - Where there is no doctor or medical treatment available, I highly recommend plantain (weed – not banana) leaves. Release the juices by chewing or crushing and apply ASAP. Plantain is a common weed found in most places.
  • Apply a clay/mud pack to the affected area. Wrap it with clean cloth or bandage and allow the pack to dry.
  • Meat tenderizer mixed with water to form a paste can be applied to neutralize the venom.
  • Along the same lines, baking soda and water can help heal the sting.
  • Activated charcoal and water will help as well.

Yellow jackets, though small in size, pack a wallop. Take precautions to avoid them, be prepared to treat nasty stings, and don’t let stinging insects keep you from enjoying the great outdoors.

Doing the stuff,

Todd

P.S.

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Categories: Bushcraft, Herbal Remedies, Medical, Preparedness | Tags: , , | 19 Comments

13 Reasons to Use this Wicked Herbal Remedy

by Todd Walker

What if wicked chickens laid deviled eggs?

That’s probably not going to happen. But then again, Monsanto hasn’t tried – yet.

Either way, here’s a wicked sounding herbal remedy that you should consider adding to your home apothecary.

Witch Hazel

Image credit

Witch hazel is a common flowering shrub found in North America. The witchy name came about by its limbs being used in divining, dowsing, or witching for water. A dowser would use a witching wand made out of a stick or branch of witch hazel to find a vein of water underneath the earth. Finding water by witching is still used today.

This practice was considered witchcraft by some religious folk. Whatever your beliefs on witches and magic, this scary sounding plant actually offers many healing qualities.

Here’s 13 of the wicked good benefits of using witch hazel:

NOTE: Witch hazel tinctures made from the plant can be ingested in small amounts. However, the witch hazel on the drug store shelves contains isopropyl alcohol and should never be used internally.

A.) Acne. The leaves, twigs, and bark of the plant are loaded with tannins which act as an astringent. When applied to the skin they help tighten and dry skin.

B.) Hemorrhoids are a pain in the arse! Witch hazel is one of the main ingredients in Preparation H because it works so well to shrink blood vessels. When the SHTF and your run out of over the counter medication, this herbal remedy will be your bottom’s new best friend.

C.) Sore throat and laryngitis. Gargle with a mixture of WH and cloves to relieve and heal sore throats. Again, NOT the drug store kind!

D.) Teething babies with diaper rash. WH will help sooth both ends of your baby.

E.) Bruises, bumps, and sprains. Soak a cloth with WH and wrap it around a bruise overnight to reduce swelling and discoloration. Test your skins reaction before applying any new herbal remedy.

F.) Bleeding. Minor internal bleeding (ulcers and gums) can be treated with WH. Some doctors prescribe WH to help stop bleeding after surgery when appropriate.

G.) Cleanse wounds and reduce inflammation. On my last tattoo, I asked the my artist what he was applying on my tat. Witch hazel. It works as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory. Use WH on minor scrapes and cuts on your body.

H.) Diarrhea from stomach flu and irritated bowel. Make a sipping tea with WH. Add some mint for taste.

I.) Itchy skin. From poison ivy to sun burn, apply witch hazel to stop the itching. Bug and spider bites respond well to WH, too.

J.) Shaving aid. WH stops razor burn. Styptic pencils contain astringents and use the same properties found in WH to stop bleeding.

K.) Fever. Apply a damp cloth with WH to the forehead or back of the neck to help break a fever. I’ve never tried this, but lots of people swear by this trick.

L.) Swimmers ear. This one I’ve tried. As a kid, my brother and I spent lots of time in the water and got swimmers ear often. Mama would stick a cotton ball soaked in WH in our affected ear(s) to wick the moisture.

M.) Dry and cracked hands. Though it removes oils, the astringent properties also seal moisture in the skin. Use it on your hands when they begin to show signs of cracking from hoeing on your homestead.

Here are two DiY recipe for witch hazel extract: The Mountain Rose Blog and New Life on a Homestead if you’re interested.

Witch hazel is one of the few remaining American medicinal plants allowed by the FDA in over the counter drugs. Our earliest American pioneers knew the effectiveness of witch hazel for all manner of ailment and illness – even without the Food and Drug Administration’s stamp of approval. And they stocked it in their home apothecaries and covered wagons.

How about you? Got any good witch hazel stories? Share them if you’d like in the comment section.

Doing the stuff,

Todd

P.S.

This information is solely for educational purposes. IT IS NOT MEDICAL ADVICE.  I am not a licensed physician, just sharing information, folks. Do your own due diligence before using any herbal remedy.

 

Categories: Bushcraft, Herbal Remedies, Homeopathy, Medical, Wildcrafting | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Survival Properties of Garlic and Apple Cider Vinegar

Guest post by 

Garlic is one of the earth’s greatest health tonics and does indeed have scientifically-proven medicinal properties. It contains a substance called Allicin, which has anti-bacterial properties that are equivalent to a weak penicillin. It is a natural antibiotic and is useful in treating everything from allergies to tonsillitis. Garlic contains many sulfur compounds which detoxify the body, boost the immune system, lower blood pressure and improve circulation. Garlic has also demonstrated anti-cancer, antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti-oxidant effects. Garlic has powerful anti-viral properties.

 

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Garlic can stimulate the production of glutathione, an amino acid which is known to be a very potent antioxidant and de-toxifier and the smooth muscle relaxant adenosine, also found in the herb, will lower blood pressure.

Today people use garlic to help prevent atherosclerosis (plaque build up in the arteries causing blockage and possibly leading to heart attack or stroke), reduce colds, coughs, and bronchitis.

Survival Properties:Garlic is a great antibiotic and also has powerful antiviral properties making it a good choice all year to combat colds, flu, ear infections, and maintain a healthy circulatory system.

Latin Name: **Allium sativum
**Common Names: **Allium, Garlic, Rustic Treacle, Stinking Rose

Properties: antibiotic, antibacterial, anti-fungal, antiseptic, anti-viral, expectorant, fungicide, antihistamine

Uses: Lowers blood pressure and LDL Cholesterol. Prevents atherosclerotic buildup. Lowers or helps to regulate blood sugar. Helps to prevent blood clots from forming, thus reducing the possibility of strokes and thromboses. Removes heavy metals such as lead and mercury from the body. Reduces yeast infections. Relief from rheumatism. Protects against heart disease and strokes. Wounds, ulcers, skin infections, flu,

“Garlic Acid Tincture Recipe”

Apple Cider/Garlic Tincture Recipe
Ingredients:
4 cloves of fresh Pressed Garlic
6 oz. Raw unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar

1 clean glass jar

Potato Ricer and or cheesecloth

Directions:
Mix both together in a glass jar for 2-4 weeks the longer the stronger shaking daily.
Strain garlic and squeeze well in a cheesecloth and or potato ricer put 1/4 of raw pressed garlic back in jar and bottle. The raw garlic will help maintain the potency level at optimal

1. Place 4 oz. of Cider vinegar in a jar add minced or pressed garlic cloves.

2.Cover and shake daily for a min of 2 weeks, longer will give you a stronger and more potent tincture.

3. After 2 weeks or more strain garlic from cider vinegar and press the juices from the garlic with a cheesecloth or place the socked chopped garlic wrapped in a cheesecloth and press it in a potato ricer and squeeze the juices back into the cider vinegar them replace the chopped garlic back into the vinegar and bottle.

Use 1/2 teaspoon or 1 full eyedropper into a 6 oz. glass of WARM filtered water for cold and flu and even Bronchitis or as a daily healthy Tonic this is great for the circulatory system.This is good for cold and flu and as a natural anti-viral antidote a great travel aid and first aid companion.
Do Not Use if pregnant or breast-feeding.

“Garlic for ear infections”

Take 1/4 cup of olive oil and 2 cloves of pressed garlic mix well, microwave or heat for 2 minutes let get down to a warm state, put 2 drops in affected ear followed by a sterile piece of cotton. By morning you should feel more than relief if not well altogether.

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Categories: Herbal Remedies, Homeopathy, Medical, Natural Health | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

How to Starve Cancer Cells

Editor’s note: In my F-bomb article, fructose and glucose are culprits behind obesity, liver damage, and a host of other nasty, chronic health issues. We had one doctor tell DRG to eat an alkaline diet to help fight the cancer. Here Dr. Mercola shares promising info on eating a ketogenic diet to recover from cancer.

Source: Mercola.com

By Dr. Mercola

To some, a ketogenic diet amounts to nothing less than a drug-free cancer treatment. The diet calls for eliminating carbohydrates, replacing them with healthy fats and protein.

The premise is that since cancer cells need glucose to thrive, and carbohydrates turn into glucose in your body, then cutting out carbs literally starves the cancer cells.

This type of diet, in which you replace carbs with moderate amounts of high quality protein and high amounts of beneficial fat, is what I recommend for everyone, whether you have cancer or not. It’s simply a diet that will help optimize your weight and health overall, as eating this way will help you convert from carb burning mode to fat burning.

Ketogenic Diet May Be Key to Brain Cancer Recovery

The featured video shows Thomas Seyfried, Ph.D, who is one of the leaders in teasing the details of how to treat cancer nutritionally. I am scheduled to interview him shortly and hope to have that interview up later this year. In the video, Professor Seyfried discusses how, as a metabolic disorder involving the dysregulation of respiration, malignant brain cancer can be managed through changes in the metabolic environment.

“In contrast to normal neurons and glia, which transition to ketone bodies (beta-hydroxybutyrate) for respiratory energy when glucose levels are reduced, malignant brain tumors are mostly dependent on non-oxidative substrate level phosphorylation due to structural and functional abnormalities in mitochondria. Glucose and glutamine are major fuels for malignant cancer cells.

The transition from glucose to ketone bodies as an energy source is an ancestrally conserved adaptation to food deprivation that permits the survival of normal cells during extreme shifts in nutritional environment. Only those cells with a flexible genome, honed through millions of years of environmental forcing and variability selection, can transition from one energy state to another.

We propose a different approach to brain cancer management that exploits the metabolic flexibility of normal cells at the expense of the genetically defective and metabolically challenged. This evolutionary and metabolic approach to brain cancer management is supported from studies in orthotopic mouse brain tumor models and from case studies in patients.

Calorie restriction and restricted ketogenic diets (R-KD), which reduce circulating glucose levels and elevate ketone levels, are anti-invasive, anti-angiogenic, and pro-apoptotic towards malignant brain cancer.”1

Current conventional cancer treatment typically involves chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Chemotherapy is a cytotoxic poison, and radiation is devastating to the human body. More often than not, the treatment is what eventually kills the patient. This can no longer be accepted as “the best we can do.” As Dr. Seyfried says:

“The reason why we have so few people surviving is because of the standard of care. It has to be changed, if it’s not changed, there will be no major progress. Period.”

Metabolic Therapy/Ketogenic Diet Being Investigated as Cancer Treatment

CBN News recently published an article on the ketogenic diet.2 Clearly, many people are realizing that what we have been doing in terms of fighting cancer is simply not working, and we cannot afford to continue in the same way. Prevention mustbe addressed if we ever want to turn the tide on the growing incidence of cancer across all age groups. But even more astounding, in terms of treatment, is that cancer may respond to diet alone.

“Dr. Fred Hatfield is an impressive guy: a power-lifting champion, author of dozens of books, a millionaire businessman with a beautiful wife. But he’ll tell you his greatest accomplishment is killing his cancer just in the nick of time,” CBN News writes. “The doctors gave me three months to live because of widespread metastatic cancer in my skeletal structure,” he recalled. “Three months; three different doctors told me that same thing.”

Dr. Hatfield was preparing to die when he heard of metabolic therapy, also known as the ketogenic diet. He had nothing to lose so he gave it a try, and… it worked. The cancer disappeared completely, and at the time of his interview (above), he’d been cancer-free for over a year.

 

The video above also features Dr. Dominic D’Agostino who, along with a team of researchers at the University of South Florida studies metabolic therapy. They found that when lab animals were fed a carb-free diet, they survived highly aggressive metastatic cancer better than those treated with chemotherapy. CBN reports:

“’We have dramatically increased survival with metabolic therapy,’ [Dr. D’Agostino] said. ‘So we think it’s important to get this information out.’ It’s not just lab mice. Dr. D’Agostino has also seen similar success in people – lots of them. ‘I’ve been in correspondence with a number of people,’ he said. ‘At least a dozen over the last year-and-a-half to two years, and all of them are still alive, despite the odds. So this is very encouraging.’”

 Read the rest here

 

Categories: Healthcare, Medical, Natural Health | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Medicinal Moonshine to cure coughs

 I’m always interested in home remedies to keep me away from doctors. I pick plantain from our yard and school yard when it pops up to use for insect bites and other ailments. For sore throats I use is raw apple cider vinegar, honey, and water. James over at Survival Punk shares a home remedy for a stubborn cough that uses three of my favorite ingredients – medicinally, of course. Check it out…

Medicinal Moonshine to cure coughs

For this article I wish I had a gypsy wagon for selling snake oil from. Crazy James’ Snake Oil Wagon of Wonder. Maybe a new business venture for me if this Survivalpunk thing doesn’t pan out. So I got over the stomach virus thing and a few days after I started having a sore throat and a horrible cough. I felt really bad for a few days, achy, tired, runny nose, the works. I thought I might have caught the flu going around. Actually I might have or maybe bronchitis, I’m not sure I don’t go to the doctor and I’m not a doctor, I don’t even play one on the internet. All I know is five days later I’m still coughing and it sucks. One of my good friends who knows a lot more about both herbal remedies and a lot more about moonshine told me to take some to get rid of my lingering cough. Well I’m never one to turn down a chance for booze so this is what I did for my cough.

The recipe my friend gave me, after I already made this one, is as follows:

  • One Shot of Moonshine
  • A spoon full of Honey
  • A squeeze of Lemon juice

I might try that when I wake up but right now I’m drinking another recipe. I knew she had said to combine Moonshine, Honey and Lemon and Googled that while waiting for her to text me back with her recipe. I came across a whole slew of Moonshine remedies on this site. What I followed was his Pleasant-tasting syrup for a nagging cough, and a nagging cough was exactly what I have. The recipe looked super easy so let’s make some Moonshine cough syrup.

Ingredients

Ingredients

You will need three things to make this cough syrup. Moonshine, Honey and a lemon. I love short shopping lists. If you can get real Moonshine or make it then that’s the best. I was in a pinch and even living in Tennessee couldn’t get any quickly. The local liquor stores now sale moonshine. It is not as strong as the real stuff but close enough for me. For the honey I suggest going local if you can. I bought the most local stuff I could get with the cone still in it. For the lemon just get one, unless your Florida Hillbilly you probably don’t have them growing in your backyard.

Read the rest of the recipe here

Categories: Homeopathy, Medical, Natural Health, Self-reliance | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

Slippery Elm Bark and its wonders

A week ago I came down with 24 hour stomach bug with a 102 fever – the day before DRG and I had planned to leave on our mini-vacation. Fortunately it was only a 24 hour bug. The fever broke the next morning and we set sail. The effects of the bug had me pulling over several times for ‘rest stops’ since I had to ‘go’ 6 times on what would have been a 5 hour trip.

That was probably too much info. However, the article below is another example of how nature provides so many avenues for healing our bodies – not only when pharma drugs aren’t available, but in place of the local pharmacy.

Source: Totally Organic

The Wonders of Slippery Elm
 
 
 
 

Traditional Use
Slippery elm was one of the most useful medicinal plants of the American wilderness. Native Americans from the Missouri River Valley used a tea of the fresh inner bark to make a soothing laxative. Among the Creek, a poultice of the bark was a toothache remedy. The Osage and other groups applied bark poultices to extract thorns and gunshot balls. Surgeons during the American Revolution used bark poultices as their primary treatment for gunshot wounds, and a soldier, separated from his company, survived for ten days in the wilderness on slippery elm and sassafras barks. During the War of 1812, when food was scarce, British soldiers fed their horses on slippery elm bark. Nineteenth-century physicians recommended slippery elm broth as a wholesome and nutritious food for infants and invalids, and the tea has long been the herbal treatment of choice for acute stomach ulcers and colitis.

 

How to make a “moc” chocolate milk drink with slippery Elm.

 

The Recipe:
Take 10 oz. Hot Milk
2 tblspns Slippery Elm Bark Powder
1 tspn spoon honey
This can be added to fruit juices and create a freshness / earthy flavor. It adds a healthiness to a good quality fruit juice or add it to a freshly juiced juice e.g. apple celery carrot  or sprinkles some throughout your cereals hot or cold. Watch the difference!!!
So why is it so Great !!!
Slippery Elm was also used by native americans to remove the gamey taste out of their meats. It was also used to gel certain kinds of foods. this is because slippery Elm will absorb almost 20 times its volume and becomes like a liquid oatmeal ( this is also known as a gruel).

Read the rest here

Categories: Bushcraft, Herbal Remedies, Homeopathy, Medical, Natural Health, Wildcrafting | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

6 Cold and Flu-Fighting Recipes Your Doctor Probably Didn’t Tell You About

Thanks to Caroline Cooper (a top Sherpa contributor) for the practical advice in her article over at eatkamloops.org. Fight back smarter with these natural remedies.

Healthy Household: Comfort for Colds

by Caroline Cooper

licorice lozenges Healthy Household: Comfort for Colds

March is one of the worst months for colds and flu. Here are some strategies for avoiding colds and flu.

Tip Number One: Eat a diet of nourishing traditional foods. Avoid all processed foods and sugary snacks. Make sure your diet has plenty of healthy fats. Eat coconut oil which has anti-viral components. During the winter, eat pastured lard which is high in vitamin D. During the winter and early spring, supplement your diet with fermented cod liver oil and high vitamin butter oil. If you have a source of raw milk you only need to supplement with fermented cod liver oil. Remember to eat your garlic. Use at least one crushed or minced fresh garlic clove everyday in your food.

If you do get sick, there are a few recipes below that will help your family avoid taking pharmaceutical drugs. Remember that colds and flu come from viruses which hate heat. Fevers kill viruses. Fevers should be allowed to take their course in most cases, except in very young children or very high fevers. An out-of-control fever is a medical emergency. Use good sense and get to emergency services.

Tip Number Two: Take care of yourself early in the illness. When you first get that sense that you are getting sick try taking Aconite 30c . This is a homeopathic remedy for stopping colds and flu but only works in the very earliest stages of an emerging illness. I started using homeopathic remedies because I wanted to do something very gentle for my children when they were ill. I have found homeopathic remedies work surprisingly well with young children. I use the Helios Homeopathic First Aid Kit.

If you prefer herbs, this is the time to use oregano essential oil (Origanum vulgare) which is a good addition to your Herbal First Aid Kit. (I will talk about making your own Herbal First Aid Kit in a later posting.) This is a very strong essential oil and can be used many ways. For an emerging sore throat, try 1-2 drops in the mouth twice a day. Swish the oregano essential oil around your mouth for a few minutes and then swallow. Some people find straight essential oils too powerful and will cut it with a small amount of olive oil. This treatment is better for adults. Children don’t like the strong taste.

If you prefer herbs, this is the time to take Echinacea Extract or Angelica Extract. Extracts take three to six weeks to prepare so it would be best to make the extracts in the fall or you will have to purchase the extracts at a health food store. Many people find Echinacea Extract works very well to improve immune function. I find Angelica Extract to work better for me. We are all different so you will have to experiment to find which extract will work best for you. The extracts should be taken three times a day in hot water. Along with talking an extract, make up a Ginger Infusion or Cold Away Infusion and drink this throughout the day. If you have a really sore throat find a local supply of propolis and suck on a small piece.

Remember food should always be your first medicine. If you are feeling poorly, this is the time to make some nourishing bone broths, stews and soups. Warming drinks are very comforting. Get plenty of rest. This is the time to increase your consumption of coconut oil to a therapeutic level which is thought to be 2-3 tablespoons a day.

Tip Number Three: Have some cold supplies in your pantry, ready for use. Here are six recipes that will come in handle if someone gets sick in the household. The Ginger Infusion will work for most colds and is liked by children. Cold Away Infusion is better when you are really sick and can’t seem to shake the cold or flu. Elderberry Syrup can be taken during flu season to avoid getting sick or can be used after the cold or flu sets in. Licorice Lozenges are really nice on a sore throat. Honeyed Ginger is good for a sore throat or nausea.

angelica extract Healthy Household: Comfort for Colds

Making extracts are very easy but will take about six weeks to infuse. Start making medicines in the fall for the winter months.

Echinacea or Angelica Extract
1/2c Echinacea root (Echinacea purpurea) or Angelica root (Angelica archangelica)
2c clear Vodka or Tequila, 40% alcohol
Use a small pint-sized glass canning jar with a plastic lid. Put either the Echinacea root or Angelica root into the jar. Add the alcohol of choice and fill the jar. Label the jar with the name of the plant, percentage of alcohol, today’s day, and the decanting day. Decanting day will be in six weeks. The jar will need to be turned over every day for at least the first week. On decanting day, use a cotton cloth to squeeze out all the liquid from the roots. Some herbalists use a juicer to get all the goodness out of the plant materials and into the extract. (Due to all the woody parts, I broke part of my juicer trying this, so be careful if you try this with your juicer. For home preparation, squeezing out all the liquid is far easier. Sometimes it’s best not to copy the professionals!) Store the extract in a dark glass bottle. If available, use a dropper top for easy dispersal.

Ginger Infusion
1/2c fresh ginger (Zingiber officinale), grated finely or 1/3c dried ginger
1L boiling filtered water
local raw honey, to taste
lemon, freshly squeezed, to taste
Put fresh or dried ginger into the glass jar. Pour boiling filtered water over the ginger and fill the 1L glass canning jar to the top. Put the lid on the jar and let the infusion steep for 4 hours or overnight. Squeeze out all the juice from the plant material into the infusion. When ready to drink, gently re-heat the infusion. Do not allow the infusion to boil or you may lose some of the medicinal properties of the plants. Add freshly squeezed lemon juice and local raw honey to taste. This drink is very soothing on a sore throat.

Cold Away Infusion
1/4c Rosehips (Rosa canina) or Yarrow Leaf (Achillea millefolium)
1/4c Elder Flowers (Sambucus nigra)
1/4c Peppermint Leaf (Mentha piperita)
2L boiling filtered water
Put plant materials into 2L glass canning jar. Pour boiling filtered water over plant materials and fill the 2L glass canning jar to the top. Put the lid on the jar and let the infusion steep for four hours or overnight. Squeeze out all the juice from the plant material into the infusion. When ready to drink, gently heat up the infusion. Do not allow the infusion to boil or you may lose some of the medicinal properties of the plants. Consume as needed.

Elderberry Syrup
Take 1T of syrup everyday to avoid colds and flu. Or if ill, take 1T three times each day.
1/2c Elderberries (Sambucus nigra)
5-10 cloves (Syzygium aromaticum)
1 cinnamon stick (Cinnamomum zeylanicum)
1-2T fresh ginger (Zingiber officinale), grated finely
2c filtered water
1/2c local raw honey
Bring filtered water to a boil. Add Elderberries, cloves, cinnamon stick and ginger. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes until liquid is reduced by one half. This is known as a decoction. Squeeze out all the juice from the plant material into the decoction. Let the decoction cool before adding the local raw honey. Stir well and refrigerate. This syrup will last for months in the fridge.

Licorice Lozenges
1c Slippery Elm powder (Ulmus rubra)
1/2c Licorice Root (Glycyrrhiza glabra)
2c filtered water
1/4c local raw honey
Bring the filtered water to a boil and add the Licorice Root. Simmer for about 30 minutes until at least half of the water is gone. This is a decoction. Squeeze out all the juice from the plant material into the decoction. Let the decoction cool before adding the local raw honey. This avoids destroying the healing properties in the raw honey. Put the Slippery Elm powder in a bowl and add enough licorice decoction to make a soft dough. Roll out the soft dough on more Slippery Elm powder to a thickness of about 1/4 inch. Cut the dough into small 1/2 inch squares. Place the lozenges in a dehydrator overnight until dry. The lozenges will last for months in a metal tin.

Honeyed Ginger
1 organic ginger root (Zingiber officinale), sliced diagonally
1c filtered water
enough local raw honey to cover ginger
1 pint glass canning jar
Slice the organic ginger diagonally. You do not have to peel the ginger if it is organic. Put ginger slices in boiling water and reduce heat to very low. Cook the ginger for about 40 minutes until the ginger becomes translucent. Reserve the ginger liquid and water down for a soothing tea. Traditionally, this honey would be cooked with the ginger, but I feel it is best to just store the ginger in enough raw local honey to cover the ginger. If you find the ginger just too spicy, very gently warm some of the honey while stirring the ginger. Gently heat for another 40 minutes. The ginger will become more and more translucent. Store in a glass jar in the fridge. The ginger flavored raw honey can also be used as a treatment for a sore throat. Just spoon it out by the teaspoon. The relief will be immediate.

 

Categories: Herbal Remedies, Homeopathy, Medical, Natural Health | Tags: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

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