The Benefits of Herbs And Essential Oils

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For thousands of years the human race has used herbs in various ways. These uses can be categorized into three distinctive groups; religious, culinary and medicinal. In the article below we will take a close look at each of these categories in order focusing upon the medicinal uses and essential oils.

Through the ions o time there have been many other uses of herbs which we will not be discussing here and these include them being used as currency, as a disinfectant and as a perfume or powerful smell to overpower sickening odors. Herbs come from many parts of the world and each culture usually had unusual uses for them. It is interesting to note that the Ancient Egyptians, Ancient Greek and Sumerians, the Romans all wrote about them in detail and other writings exist from Ancient India and China. We shall be concentrating on modern uses.

Herbs And Religion

Herbs are still used in numerous across the world.  A large number of Christians will remember myrrh from the Nativity (myrrh is the dried sap of Commiphora myrrha). Hindus will be extremely familiar with the Tulsi plant, which is a species of Basil, as it is grown by many and praised as a Goddess. In Wiccan beliefs herbs are used widely in spells, rituals as well as for healing.

Kitchen Uses of Herbs

The leaves of different plants are used in cooking but there is a difference between leafy vegetables, such as lettuce, and a herb, such as oregano, in that the latter are used in very small amounts due to their distinctive, and powerful flavor. Virtually every person in the world has benefited from the these amazing plants which are capable of lifting the blandest meal into the realms of a culinary masterpiece.

The Medicinal Uses of Herbs

As well as being powerful in flavor herbs can also have a profound effect upon the human body. Some types are used as recreational drugs, such as cannabis, which can cause legal problems as they can also have useful medical properties which are still being investigated by scientists.

Essential Oils

An essential oil is the substance extracted from a variety of plants. Essential oils are usually created by the method called distillation but some need a different process of extraction such as by using solvents or expression.

Essential oils have a number of uses, such as perfumes, bath oils, flavorings, burning (for scent) and in cleaning products. However most folk know of their use in medicine and especially in aromatherapy and other forms of alternative medicine. I use lavender oil in a number of ways, I add it to my mixture for my oil burner to make the room smell nice but I also use about three drops in a bath when I suffer from aching limbs. When my legs are extremely painful I massage it into the muscles but only when it is mixed with a carrier oil. As well as helping to relax the muscles it also helps me sleep better.

Herbs should be handled with with safety in mind as some can be extremely harmful to the human body (in large quantities). Special care should be taken if you are about to have a child as something that you may consider safe could be terribly problematic, such as peppermint oil which should be avoided completely in its dilute state. However spearmint and a few other mild oils can be used but to avoid any of miscarriage I would avoid all herbs and essential oils unless you know for definite they are safe.

The awesome thing about herbs is that growing your own is as hard as buying a herb kit and placing it near a window. To discover more visit

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