We all know herbs are great for cooking. But, did you know they are remarkable natural healers as well? Herbs have been used for thousands of years as natural medicines that soothe, heal, and treat various ailments. Ancient scholars wrote about their potency and praised their healing powers. With such a long tradition of promoting health and vitality, no home should be without a few basic herbs for healing.
You know it tastes great in pesto and pasta, but basil has plenty more to offer! Basil is a natural anti-inflammatory and it also shows antiseptic properties that can help heal minor cuts, scrapes, and bruises. In addition, it helps soothe minor tummy issues like gas and nausea.
Chamomile is a very popular herb and is grown for its amazing healing properties. The flower heads are used in countless teas, herbal infusions, and homemade salve concoctions. Chamomile is great for indigestion and supports good digestion overall. It is also a nice herb to have on hand for its calming properties. Use it in a tea as a mild natural sedative to promote sleep or lessen worry and anxiety. Chamomile can also help lessen skin inflammation. I use my homemade chamomile salve for everything from chapped lips to diaper rash.
Suffer from migraines or headaches? If so, your garden should not be without this powerful herb. Feverfew is literally named from a Latin word that means “fever reducer.” It is good for calming headaches, joint pain, arthritis, and yes … fevers! Chew on a few clean leaves to combat migraines and headaches instantly. (I’ve also heard this is a good treatment for earaches and sinus issues.) You can also make a tea with the leaves and flowers for headache relief.
Best known for its calming effects on the mind and body, lavender can promote a sense of well-being. It’s good for treating stress, anxiety, and sleep problems. It’s also great for treating mild skin problems like cuts, sores, and even acne.
This amazing herb is good for nearly everything! It is a calming herb and can help reduce stress and anxiety. It also improves good sleep, eases pain, and aids in digestion. Use it to help heal cuts, scrapes, bruises, insect bites, and stings. Lemon balm is easy to grow and just a small plant or two will bless you with plenty of leaves.
Do you know why parsley is used as a garnish in fancy restaurants? There’s more to this culinary tradition than meets the eye. A sprig of parsley will instantly cure bad breath! It also promotes good digestion and keeps the tummy calm. Parsley is also good for treating anemia and can help with fatigue.
Who hasn’t heard of drinking a cup of healing peppermint tea? Peppermint (in all forms) is good for treating nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, indigestion, bloating, and irregular bowel movements. This is because the leaves contain menthol, a powerful natural substance that can really do wonders for the digestive system! It’s the one herb my family uses the most for healing.
This herb is best known for promoting good mental health. It sharpens your mental clarity, improves memory, and stimulates brain function. In addition, it is good for treating digestive problems and headaches. Use it in a hot bath for muscle pain.
A natural bacteria fighter, this plant is good for stopping minor skin irritations. It is also good for treating sore throats and gum problems. Chew on the leaves or make yourself a cup of sage tea for calming a sore throat.
This herb is packed with thymol, a natural antiseptic that is very potent. Thyme is great for treating wounds and skin irritations. It is said to also help with fungal infections. Use it also for relieving coughs and congestion and minor stomach ailments.
Your Healing Garden
You don’t have to start with all these herbs, and in fact I wouldn’t suggest it unless you’re already a veteran gardener. Choose a two or three that are most appealing for the problems you want to treat. You can plant them directly in the ground, or you can easily plant them in pots on the back porch! Either way, make sure you plant them and actually use them. Don’t just plant them and forget them. Put the plants to work for you. You will be amazed at how well they work for many different ailments. Having a healing garden at our house has saved us many a trip to the doctor’s office, that’s for sure.