Herbs and essentials to relax


Medicinal herbs can be taken as infusions or capsules to fight tiredness. While essential oils, also made from herbs can be used in aromatherapy. In the following pages, we have developed a guide of the most efficient plants that work as remedies for tiredness and a list of essential oils from A to Z, that when used externally can help fight fatigue.

Tonic Infusion

TONIC INFUSION

Place 2 teaspoons of dried echinacea in 1 cup with boiling water. Let steep for 5 minutes, drain and drink.

NOTE

You should always consult your physician before starting any herbal treatment.

Echinacea

(Echinacea purpurea and Echinacea angustifolia)

Parts used. The root and flowers are used. Powdered echinacea and tincture are made from the plant's roots. Relatively recently, the flowers began to be used to make capsules.

• Echinacea is a wild flower native to North America. Native Americans used the plant for a variety of conditions, including high fevers and venomous bites.

• This is one of the most widely used natural remedies in the West, because of its antiviral and antibacterial properties. It supports and stimulates the body's immune system.

• It is not known what causes echinacea's curative actions, but it can be used in cases of fatigue for its stimulating-tonic properties.

Ginkgo Biloba

(Ginkgo biloba)

Parts used. The seeds and leaves are used in homemade infusions, which haven't been proven effective. However, it has been demonstrated that ginkgo extracts and capsules made from the plant's leaves are very effective. You can find them in health food stores.

Ginkgo Biloba

• The ginkgo tree species is native to China. During the Middle Ages, it was believed by Europeans that this tree came from the Garden of Eden.

• It is a powerful tonic for the mind. Ginkgo extract activates the metabolism of the brain, improving blood and oxygen circulation.

• Its active properties improve memory, lack of concentration, depression and other ailments related to fatigue.

Warning. Although this plant doesn't have serious side effects, the seeds can be toxic. It's not recommended for children or the elderly to take this remedy. You shouldn't use the seeds, because their extract can be irritating.

RINGING IN YOUR EARS

Ringing in your Ears

This persistent and bothersome symptom can be caused by insufficient circulation in the brain. This ailment can cause headaches, exhaustion and fatigue. Take 80 to 120 mg of ginkgo extract capsules a day, always under medical supervision.

ESSENTIAL OILS FROM A TO Z

Essential Oils from A to Z

ANGELICA

Stimulates the nervous system, relieves fatigue and improves concentration. Use in baths, vapors, massages and compresses. It blends well with clary sage and lemon.

Safety. Excessive use can have a narcotic effect and decrease blood circulation. Can be toxic in high doses. It increases your photo-sensibility, making it important to avoid direct sunlight after using.

CLARY SAGE

This potent sedative can be used in vapors. It releases tensions that prevent the free flow of energy. It also calms the nerves and clears the mind. As it helps to awaken contemplation, it is good for meditation.

Safety. It should be used in low doses, because it can be soporific.

WARNING

Essential oils are for external use only , they should never be ingested. Keep stored away from children and keep away from your eyes.

Siberian ginseng

(Eleutheroccoccus senticosus)

Siberian ginseng

Parts used. The roots. Fresh or dried Siberian ginseng root is not available on the market, you can only buy it in capsule form, made from a base of the root.

• Stimulating effects that increase physical and mental stamina, especially for cases of extreme exhaustion.

• There are three varieties of this plant, but when it is used in Chinese medicine it is used in particular for cases of energy deficiency, or lack of vital energy in the heart. It also has physical therapeutic effects, calming heart palpitations, supporting the immune system and assisting the body in tolerating aggressions.

Warning. Do not take ginseng continuously for more than four weeks. It can cause insomnia and high blood pressure. It's best to avoid coffee or caffeinated tea while using ginseng. You should not take this remedy if you are healthy, only take it if you have signs of tiredness or physical fatigue. This remedy is not recommended for pregnant women or for children under 12 years old.

FOR MORE ENERGY

It's recommended to take 1-2 tablets of Siberian ginseng once a day, always under medical supervision.

ENERGETIC TONIC

For a lasting effect, prepare a decoction with guarana seed. Prepare by adding 2 teaspoons of crushed guarana seeds to 1 cup of boiling water and let steep for 5 minutes. Drain and drink 2 or 3 cups a day.

Guarana

(Paulina cupana)

Parts used. The seeds, covered in a shell are toasted and ground to make a brown powder. The roots are also used.

• This plant native to the Amazon area, produces a seed rich in caffeine and other stimulating substances. The indigenous people of the Amazon rain forest use crushed guarana seed as a beverage and a medicine.

• Stimulates the central nervous system and promotes the release of adrenaline. Keeps your arteries clear, elastic, supporting good blood circulation in the body.

Guarana

• Thanks to its caffeine content, it prolongs stamina and increases the body's capacity to use physical strength.

• It promotes the use of glucose in the muscles, benefiting the muscular tissue, increasing the muscle's stamina against fatigue. Used as a tonic and general stimulant, it fights against physical exhaustion, fatigue or low energy.

• Can be used in tablets (made with the dried extract) or in a powder to mix with juices and other liquids.

• It shouldn't be used with other stimulants (ginseng, coffee, maté, etc) or with tranquilizers.

Warning. Avoid guarana if you suffer from caffeine intolerance, high blood pressure, serious cardiovascular disorders, ulcer and insomia. It shouldn't be taken during pregnancy and lactation. Avoid giving children guarana.

A REMEDY FROM THE AMAZON

In the Amazon forest guarana is traditionally prepared by toasting the seeds to avoid fermentation. Natives use a traditional method of preparation by drying and roasting the seeds and mixing them with water to make a paste. The mixture is cooked over fire. This is called “guarana paste”, which the indigenous people drink by placing it in a cup of hot water throughout the day as an energetic tonic.

ESSENTIAL OILS FROM A TO Z

Essential Oils from A to Z

EUCALYPTUS

Its aroma stimulates and clears the mind; strengthens the nervous system and immune function, increasing your body's defenses when you are tired or fighting an illness. It purifies the air and body. This potent aroma can be used in sprays, baths, compresses or massages; when using on the skin eucalyptus should be diluted.

Safety. Can irritate the skin. Shouldn't be used if you suffer from high blood pressure.

GINGER

Intense stimulant that at the same time comforts and brings on a sense of euphoria, which can help to relieve states of extreme tiredness. This nervous tonic calms your emotions and improves your memory. It also has revitalizing effects, especially when used with other oils like ylang ylang, lavender and angelica. It can be added to baths, vapors, massages and compresses.

Safety. If you have sensitive skin, it is advised to use this oil diluted.

Huang qi

(Astragalus membranaceus)

Huang qi

Huang qi

Huang qi

Parts used. The roots are extracted from the plant when it is 4 to 7 years old; the roots are cultivated in the spring. It is used to prepare infusions, make capsules or tinctures, which can be found in most natural food stores.

Huan qi in extracts strengthens the body's inmune system and increases the production of antibodies to fight off external cell destruction and tumor cells.

Chi or essential energy tones the body. It is also called the factor of resistance because in Chinese medicine it is prescribed for cases of fatigue or weakness.

• There are three ways to take huang qi: decoction of fresh or dried root; in capsules or tablets made from dried extract of the plant; in tincture (made with alcohol maceration).

Warning. Do not take with other stimulants, like gingseng, coffee, tea or maté.

Recommended dose:

• Take 3 to 5 teaspoons of fresh root per day in a decoction.

• Supplements usually contain 500 mg of huang qi . Take 2 or 3 capsules per day.

• Tincture, take 1 teaspoon 3 times a day.

FIGHTING TIREDNESS

Prepare a decoction of the bark, placing I tablespoon of the bark in 2 cups of cold water and let boil 5 to 15 minutes. Filter and drink throughout the day.

Pink trumpet tree

(Tabebuia avellanedae)

Parts used. The internal bark that is collected from wild trees, to prepare in decoctions, medicinal tinctures and salves.

Pink trumpet tree

Pink trumpet tree

• This tree, native to South America, is valued for its hard wood and its curative properties for treating complex ailments like post-viral fatigue, recuperating from an illness, loss of energy and fighting cancer with coadjutant treatments.

• Many of its components stop the growth of tumors, by impeding their metabolism of oxygen.

• Because of its properties it is used to restore a body tired out by fatigue.

ESSENTIAL OILS FROM A TO Z

Essential Oils from A to Z

JUNIPER

Its stimulant properties clear and tone the mind. Especially good if you are under a lot of pressure or with a lot of responsibilities, if you feel tired or if you feel anxious or antsy. Excellent antidepressant, this oil develops the spirit's harmony; its fresh aroma lifts up your spirits and improves your self-esteem. It blends well with geranium, lavender and vetiver.

Safety. Shouldn't be used during pregnancy, because excessive use can bring on birth. High doses and concentrates can irritate the skin.

LEMON

Used to treat psychological symptoms of tiredness because it clears and refreshes the mind, increasing concentration, improving energy and emotional well-being. Blend with incense, ylang ylang or camomile.

Safety. This essence can irritate the skin if it isn't diluted. Because of its photo-toxic effects it's best to avoid exposure to sunlight after using it.

Kola nut

(Cola acuminata)

Parts used. The seeds are used to make powder or tincture. The powder or seeds are used in infusion or tincture form diluted with water.

• This majestic tree is native to Africa where it has been used as a medicinal remedy and aphrodisiac.

• General stimulant that tones the nervous system and heart. It also helps to recover energy.

• Used for cases of psychological and physical fatigue and for nervous depression.

Warning. Although this is a stimulant for the nervous system, in high doses it can have a depressing effect; it can produce over-excitement followed by depression.

Kola nut

Recommended doses:

• Infusion of powder made from seeds.

Up to ½ teaspoon per cup.

• Seed infusion. Use one teaspoon per cup of tea. Drink 2 cups a day before meals.

• In tincture form. Drink up to 30 drops diluted in a glass of water, 3-4 times a day.

ENERGETIC WINE

Macerate 2 tablespoons of kola nut in 1 cup of high grade alcohol (in general 30 grades). After mixing add 3 cups of wine spirits and allow to age for 3 months. Filter and drink 3 small cups a day as a general tonic.

Rosemary

(Rosmarinus officinalis)

Parts used. The leaves, fresh or dried are used in infusions. They are also used to make essential oils and medicinal tinctures.

• Native to the Mediterranean, it was used in ancient culture to improve and strengthen the memory.

• Used for cases of tiredness, stress and slight depression.

• Its aroma and flavor is penetrating and is used in cooking. It is said that rosemary “lifts up the spirit.”

• Stimulates blood pressure, especially in the head, improving concentration. It also helps to relieve headaches, improves memory and restores and invigorates the body after a long tiring day.

FOR EXHAUSTION

  1. Infusion for headache. Take every 3 hours, 2 tablespoons of rosemary infusion prepared with dried leaves.

Infusion for headache

  1. Revitalizing tincture. Drink I teaspoon of tincture diluted in water, 2 times per day. It is an excellent tonic for the body.

Revitalizing tincture

ESSENTIAL OILS FROM A TO Z

Essential Oils from A to Z

LIMONCELLO OR LEMON HERB

Strengthens the body, and acts as an excellent muscular stimulant. This herb also helps to relieve the nervous exhaustion produced by tiredness. It also is good for headaches and exhaustion brought on by change of routines. Its aroma acts as a natural antidepressant. It can be blended with ginger and jasmine for a potent remedy.

Safety. If you use in baths and massages, it's important to use small doses because it can be irritating.

NIAULI

Physical and mental stimulant. Its tonic effects improve concentration and clear thinking. It's one of the most beneficial essential oils and it doesn't present side effects. It doesn't irritate the skin, always use high quality oil.

Safety. Because of its stimulant characteristics, it's best to use it in the afternoon, combined with other sedative oils, such as lavender and fennel so that it doesn't cause insomnia.

Sage

(Salvia officinalis)

Sage

Parts used. The leaves, fresh or dried are used to make infusions, essential oils and medicinal tinctures.

• It is known as a plant used in cooking. In Mediterranean cuisine, the plant's native region, sage is a common herb. Its name is a key to its curative properties: it comes from the Latin word salvare, which means “to save.”

• Its components act as a gentle stimulating tonic for the central nervous system, for which reason it gives relief for everyday tiredness.

• In Chinese medicine it is considered to be a yin tonic, which calms and at the same time stimulates the nervous system.

Warning. Do not drink this remedy during pregnancy and breastfeeding, because it is a strong hormonal stimulant and one of its components, tuyona, disrupts the production of breast milk.

Sage

FOR EVERYDAY EXHAUSTION

Prepare an infusion with I tablespoon of sage flowers and leaves, add hot water to 1 cup, let sit for 5 minutes and strain. Drink 3 cups a day.

Yerba maté

(Ilex paraguaiensis)

Parts used. The leaves, which contain active components. It is cultivated by cutting the branches, which doesn't harm the tree.

• This plant species is native to the bordering regions of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. The indigenous people of this region, the Guarani, chewed on maté leaves during the day and would drink this herb as a comforting elixir that gives strength and energy.

Yerba maté is a stimulant to fight mental and physical fatigue. It supports intellectual work. Yerba maté contains vitamin C, complex B vitamins and minerals such as calcium, potassium and magnesium.

• It doesn't present any side effects except in cases of nervousness and insomnia.

HOW TO DRINK YERBA MATÉ

How to Drink Yerba Maté

This beverage can be used in two infusion forms:

  1. • As a tea, by boiling water with 2 teaspoons of yerba maté (per cup) and draining before drinking.
  2. • The most traditional way to drink yerba maté is in a small cup or gourd called maté through a bombilla (metal filter straw).

How to Drink Yerba Maté

ESSENTIAL OILS FROM A TO Z

Essential Oils from A to Z

PINE

Its balsamic properties restore and invigorate the mind. It is used for cases of low self-esteem and other psychological symptoms caused by fatigue.

Safety. This oil can cause allergic reactions for some people and bronchial spasms in children. When used in excess this oil can cause hypertension.

ROMAN CAMOMILE

Powerful sedative for muscular pains caused by extreme tiredness. Its curative effects are not only physical but also psychological, because they are used for emotional problems caused by fatigue and stress. Can be combined with angelica and jasmine to make it more potent and to enrich a soft aromatic blend.

Safety. It shouldn't be used during the first four months of pregnancy.



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