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This article is a guest post from Adana Lima, a stay at home mom with 3 cute kids (Jamie, Pablo, and Guerrero) who writes on the topic of dumbbells set. Enjoy!
Some of the things that you have to do, when money is tight, are a real drag. It’s all about cutting back on life’s little luxuries, or having to work that little bit harder to get things done.
But, some ways of living frugally actually open up doors and let you look at the world in a very different way. That can definitely be the case when presented with the weekly medicine bill. If you put on your ‘money saving hat’ to find ways to cut it, you will find that the answer is literally on your doorstep!
Almost on reflex, when it comes to life’s minor ailments, we turn to the drugs from the corner pharmacy. That’s because the doctors tell us to do so – as do the thousand-and-one television ads selling the latest advances in medical science.
Of course, they are right – the pharmacy industry spends vast sums developing and testing drugs for your illnesses and complaints. And, they wouldn’t ask you to spend your scarce cash on them if they didn’t work. But what if there were some ailments that didn’t require you to cough up dollars at all – because you could just reach out the window and pull up a cure.
That’s the potential offered by that square of green in your backyard. Because many of the pharmacy drug compounds, so carefully isolated and purified for us, come from plants we could all grow there, at little or no extra cost. And if you delve a little into the history of medicine, behind all of the pill boxes, blister packs and medicine bottles, is the ancient tradition of herbalism – one that has helped cure people for thousands of years.
Now obviously, a lot of the herbal remedies, dating to a time of superstition and lore, were pretty wacky and misguided. But, the modern science of herbalism is based around the solid chemical analysis of the active components of plants – and on the known effect of those ingredients on the human body. Much of the ancient herbal lore has been backed up by all of this modern research. The plants in the wild really can be a help- especially to those looking put a little less of their earnings into the pockets of big pharma.
Of course, you need to be careful here. If you want to start growing your own remedies, you need to do a lot of research on what plants you might need – and to check out some serious literature on herbalism. A good plan is to back that up by a little more research in the alternative health section of the drugstore. See which herbal remedies they are selling, for what problems- and see which plant extracts they are derived from. You will then need to learn about the various ways to extract and prepare such remedies for yourself.
Armed with that info, you can start planning your own garden pharmacy. Some common plants that are definitely known to be of use, and unlikely to be dangerous include :
- Peppermint: excellent in soothing the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, upset stomachs and flatulence.
- Sage: not just good in cooking, this herb is great for many infections of the gum, mouth and skin- and can aid the healing of insect bites.
- Garlic: again a great tasting foodstuff that doubles up as a helpful herb. Garlic is reputed to aid the relief of cold symptoms of the throat, nose and chest- and is quite toxic to intestinal parasites.
These may already be in your garden. But before you go ahead in trying any herbal remedy, especially from non-foodstuffs, make sure you’ve consulted with your doctor. And double check the identification of the plant, and its active ingredients, with a reputable guide book. You want to save money, but to do so safely. However, as long as you are careful, turning your garden into a herbal haven will bring you plenty of other benefits- fresh air, exercise, and a hobby that slashes your drug-bill.
How about you all? Have you ever used any herbal remedies to help cure your colds/ailments? Did they work?
Share your experiences by commenting below!
Jacob’s Thoughts – Listed below are some of my random thoughts while reading this unique article on personal finance!
- Being a former engineer in the pharma industry and knowing all of the science and testing that goes in to making not only prescription, but also OTC drugs, I admit that I have my doubts about whether or not herbal remedies will be as potent at stopping pain, relieving sinus pressure, etc, as active pharmaceutical ingredients.
- Having said that, I think that herbal remedies can be used as a supplement whenever the need isn’t dire to have medicine. For example, maybe you just have a slight headache. Instead of popping a name brand Advil, you might find an herbal remedy that you could take!
***Photo courtesy of http://www.examiner.com/images/blog/wysiwyg/image/herbal-medicine.jpg