Tag Archives: nutrients

5 Ways To Preserve Your Herbs

5 Ways To Preserve Your Herbs

5 Ways To Preserve Your HerbsYou can store herbs in several ways: drying, freezing, tinctures or glycerites, oils and vinegars.

Your desired use will determine the way you preserve them:

  • Drying is perfect for teas.
  • Freezing offers fresh tastes even during the cold winter.
  • Tinctures or glycerites are great tonics if you want an immunity enhance.
  • Oils and vinegars are full of the minerals and vitamins from the herbs, not captured in the tinctures and may be used in your cooking.

Drying Herbs

Hang herbs upside down in a dry, dark, well-ventilated location. Attics are ideal for this. Put a paper bag around them to avoid dust.
Put them in a jar once they are dry. Use a glass container, not plastic and place away from direct sunlight or heat. Your basement or a closet is perfect.

Freezing Herbs

Freezing can be achieved in 2 ways:

  • Clean and dry the fresh herbs and put on a cookie sheet in the freezer. When they are frozen, place them in freezer bags. A few herbs may turn brown or dark after freezing, but the flavor remains preserved.
  • Another way is to mix the herbs in some water or oil and freeze in ice cube trays. Employ 2 cups washed leaves to 1 ½ cups water or 6 cups leaves to ½ cup oil. Freeze then place in freezer bags. Just add the cubes to your recipes.

Tinctures

You can make tinctures with alcohol or vegetable glycerin, which is technically a glycerite.

Alcohol should be 80-100 proof. Use fresh herbs if you can ,. The ratio is 1:2 for fresh, i.e. 50g of fresh herb per 100g of menstruum. The ratios for dried are 1:5, i.e. 50g of dried herb for 250g of menstruum.

Put the herbs in a jar, cover completely with the liquid and cap. Place in a cool, dark place – back to the basement, for 4-6 weeks shaking daily. Always label your tinctures with the date. When done, strain the herbs off with gauze and bottle the liquid.

Normally ½ to 1 teaspoon, 3 times a day is a good dosage. As with anything medicinal, if you see an allergic reaction like rash, trouble breathing etc., cease use immediately.

Oil Infusion

Herb infused oils are fantastic to employ in cooking, but also if you want to make a salve or ointment, you already have the base ready. They’re also perfect for massage or liniments.

Only use fresh virgin olive oil. Fill a jar ¾ full of fresh chopped herbs. Put oil to cover the herbs to ¼ inch below the jar top. Put a piece of gauze over the jar top and secure with the metal ring. This will let the moisture to escape and keep the oil from becoming rancid. Place in a warm, sunny location for a minimum of 14 days, stirring daily. After you have let the oil steep, strain off the herbs and cap. Store in a cool, dark location.

Vinegars

Tincturing draws out the therapeutic properties of herbs, but not the minerals and vitamins. The best choice is to use raw, organic apple cider vinegar. Always use fresh herbs. Lightly position the herbs in a jar, don’t jam. Cover with vinegar and top with a plastic lid. If you haven’t one, put some plastic wrap over the jar and screw down the lid. Label your jar with the date. Shake daily for 6 weeks. Strain and store. Use to marinate meats, fish, vegetables, or on your salads or take as a tonic, ¼ tsp at a time.

5 Natural Ways To Help Your Immune System

5 Natural Ways To Help Your Immune System

Five natural, but uncommon ways to boost one’s immune system are consuming antioxidants, getting adequate sleep, consuming certain fats, adequate sunshine and moderate exercise. Boosting one’s immune system naturally can be easy with just a few modifications to diet and lifestyle.

Antioxidants

Everybody knows that vitamin C can boost immunity. Many vitamin C containing foods are also packed with antioxidants. Protecting one’s body from the damage of free radicals can help contribute to a healthy immune system. Not only do antioxidants boost the immune system, they can also help to lessen the effects of aging and arthritis. They have even been shown to mitigate the effects of certain cancers.

Antioxidant Rich Foods

  • Blueberries
  • Blackberries
  • Raspberries
  • Strawberries
  • Pinto Beans
  • Prunes
  • Red Delicious Apples
  • Granny Smith Apples
  • Russet Potatoes Plums
  • Artichoke Hearts
  • Black Beans

Sleep

Getting adequate sleep seems remains one of the most important ways to naturally boost one’s immune system. Going without sleep can increase the likely hood of getting sick. Getting enough sleep helps one’s body to recharge. Instituting a ‘bedtime’ may help to get one in the habit of going to bed earlier. Forcing a habit is okay to begin with.

Fats

Omega-3 fatty acids are great at boosting the immune system. Adding fat to a diet to boost health may seem counterproductive. When it comes to fat, omega-3 fatty acids are essential for good immune system health. Omega-3 fatty acids have shown to lessen inflammation and aid in production of white blood cells. Not everybody eats fish three times a week, so adding omega-3 fatty acids to a diet has to be a conscious decision. Fish oils are a great way to supplement an omega-3 deficient diet.

Foods Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids

  • Fish
  • Shellfish
  • Spinach
  • Winter Squash
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Beans
  • Nuts and Seeds

Sunshine

A little bit of sunshine goes a long way. Some foods are fortified with vitamin D. Absorption of vitamin D through foods may not be as effective as sun exposure. It is actually beneficial to the immune system to get a little bit of sunshine. It is recommended to get from 5 to 30 minutes of sun exposure a few times each week. The sun exposure can be coupled with a brisk walk for an additional immune system boost.

Moderate Exercise

The tip to boosting immunity with exercise is to keep it moderate. Over straining or stressing one’s body with training can actually weaken the immune system. Taking a brisk 30 minute walk two or three times per week is a great way to get moderate exercise. The walk can be coupled with sun exposure to take advantage of two immune boosting strategies.

The five natural ways to help boost one’s immune system are eating foods rich in antioxidants, sleeping more, including omega-3 fatty acids into the diet, adequate sunshine and moderate exercise. Making these minor changes to one’s diet and lifestyle can make a positive impact on one’s immune system.

 

Sally writes on behalf of Trac Services, a regulatory affairs consultancy that help pharmaceutical companies with the clinical trial application process throughout Europe. Sally enjoys reading health and fitness blog and is particularly interested in the power of food as a medicine. Any opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily represent the business Sally writes for.