Wednesday, August 3, 2016

How to Use Essential Oils for Allergies


Nothing is more frustrating than the unrelenting urge to sneeze, sniffle, and wheeze through a nose plugged up with pollen. Allergies are no fun, but the conventional allergy medications used to treat them can be even worse, often leaving you feeling amped up and groggy all at the same time. But you can find relief without nasty side effects by learning how to use essential oils for allergies.

How to Use Essential Oils

Essential oils are concentrated fragrant oils distilled from natural plant sources and used for aromatherapy and alternative wellness. Essential oils enter the body through two primary avenues, either topically or through inhalation. Ingestion should be avoided in most cases because of potency. Learning how to use essential oils can help you treat a range of ailments more naturally. Application methods include:

1. Diffuser

A diffuser disperses the essential oil by either exposing it to air, heat, or water.

2. Spray

After diluting essential oils in water you can use them in a spray bottle. For example, this lavender magnesium spray is great for relaxation just before bed.

3. Topically

Essential oils applied directly to the skin need to be diluted with a carrier oil (for example, a vegetable or nut oil). The essential oil should have a concentration of no greater than three to five percent. That means in one teaspoon of carrier oil, you would add three drops of pure essential oil. This would make a three percent solution that could be used on a portion of the body. If you’re using the oil for massage therapy over the entire body, it should be diluted to one percent.

[Tip: Use an organic and cold pressed carrier oil like almond, grapeseed, jojoba, or avocado oil. It can either be added using a compress or applied directly to the skin through massage.]


5 Scientifically Backed Essential Oils for Allergies

Everything You Need to Know About How to Use Essential Oils for Allergies

Allergies like hay-fever come with a host of symptoms from runny nose to sinus headache, sinus pressure, itchy eyes and throat, and the list goes on. But a number of essential oils may relieve those irritating symptoms. While essential oils do have some side effects, for example, they can be irritating to the skin as well as the mouth, nose, and eyes, they don’t cause side effects like allergy medications, which can make you feel amped up, groggy, and dehydrated. Essential oils are also controversial for pregnant women and children. You should talk to your doctor before using them.

Essential oils can be less expensive than over-the-counter or prescription medications when you consider that just a few drops go a long way. A one-ounce bottle of eucalyptus oil costs around $6, but it takes just a few drops added to a diffuser to have an impact on the respiratory system. Compare this to allergy medications like Claritin and Zyrtec, which range in price from around $15 to $40.

Science is behind the curveball when it comes to essential oils, but according to researchers at the University of Maryland Medical Center, some experts believe that olfactory smell receptors in the brain communicate to other parts of the brain like the amygdala and hippocampus, influencing physical, emotional, and mental health.

Add a few drops of essential oil to a diffuser to open up the airways and reduce inflammation. These essential oils for allergies are worth trying:
1. Eucalyptus

A study published in April 2010 issue of Alternative Medicine Review found that eucalyptus has antimicrobial effects. It can be used to treat colds and flu by opening the respiratory system and reducing inflammation.

2. Rosemary

Rosemary is slightly more mild than eucalyptus, but it also works to open up inflammation in the sinuses. According to a 2011 Penn State University Medical Center study, rosemary oil also has antimicrobial qualities and can neutralize some pathogens.

3. Clove

Clove oil has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial characteristics, and can help to reduce allergy symptoms. Research published in an October 2012 issue of the Brazilian Journal of Microbiology found that clove oil can be used as an antimicrobial to kill internal and external pathogens.

4. Lavender

Lavender is a natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory. It may help reduce irritation and relax your breathing. A study published in the July 2014 issue of the journal Life Sciences, found that lavender essential oil inhalation effectively suppressed inflammation in the airways.

5. Chamomile

Chamomile is another anti-inflammatory that relaxes and relieves sinus headaches. Working with chamomile essential oil months before your hay-fever sets in may boost your immune response and decrease your reaction. One study, published in the November 2010 issue of Molecular Medicine Reports, found that chamomile can be used to treat inflammation of the mucus membranes in the mouth and throat.
When it comes to naturally clearing up your respiratory system, eucalyptus and peppermint oil are both highly effective, according to certified nutrition specialist and natural medicine expert, Dr. Josh Axe. This homemade Vapor Rub by Dr. Axe uses both and helps to open up the airways.

Homemade Vapor Rub

Ingredients

1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup grated beeswax
20 drops peppermint essential oil
20 drops eucalyptus essential oil
Glass Jar

Directions

1. Place olive oil, coconut oil, and beeswax in a jar. Place a saucepan with 2 inches of water over medium low heat. Add jar to saucepan to melt oils.

2. Let cool before adding essential oils. Pour in a jar and allow to set up.

Essential Oil Allergies for Children

Essential oils are potent and even poisonous to children when they haven’t been properly diluted. Take precaution when it comes to the little ones. Here are a few tips:
  • Keep essential oils out of reach for children.
  • Never give them to children orally.
  • Always dilute with a carrier oil.
  • Keep them away from a child’s nose. Applying diluted essential oils to the feet are often best.
  • Introduce them slowly and watch for any reaction.
  • Avoid use on children less than three months old because of extreme skin sensitivity.
  • Stick to really mild oils for babies like chamomile, dill, and lavender.
  • Talk to your child’s pediatrician before use.

Where To Buy Essential Oils

Everything You Need to Know About How to Use Essential Oils for Allergies

Not sure where to buy essential oils? When it comes to choosing essential oils, look for brands that are made purely of the oil and not diluted with fillers like propylene glycol. Bonus if they’re wildcrafted and made from organic plants grown in their indigenous locations. Read labels, and if you can’t tell from the label, call the company. If it’s hard to get a response, choose another company. Mountain Rose Herbs and Plant Therapy are both smaller companies that produce pure, high quality oils.

[Note: Always consult with your primary care physician before using essential oils to treat any type of health concern.]


How to Use Essential Oils for Allergies


Nothing is more frustrating than the unrelenting urge to sneeze, sniffle, and wheeze through a nose plugged up with pollen. Allergies are no fun, but the conventional allergy medications used to treat them can be even worse, often leaving you feeling amped up and groggy all at the same time. But you can find relief without nasty side effects by learning how to use essential oils for allergies.

How to Use Essential Oils

Essential oils are concentrated fragrant oils distilled from natural plant sources and used for aromatherapy and alternative wellness. Essential oils enter the body through two primary avenues, either topically or through inhalation. Ingestion should be avoided in most cases because of potency. Learning how to use essential oils can help you treat a range of ailments more naturally. Application methods include:

1. Diffuser

A diffuser disperses the essential oil by either exposing it to air, heat, or water.

2. Spray

After diluting essential oils in water you can use them in a spray bottle. For example, this lavender magnesium spray is great for relaxation just before bed.

3. Topically

Essential oils applied directly to the skin need to be diluted with a carrier oil (for example, a vegetable or nut oil). The essential oil should have a concentration of no greater than three to five percent. That means in one teaspoon of carrier oil, you would add three drops of pure essential oil. This would make a three percent solution that could be used on a portion of the body. If you’re using the oil for massage therapy over the entire body, it should be diluted to one percent.

[Tip: Use an organic and cold pressed carrier oil like almond, grapeseed, jojoba, or avocado oil. It can either be added using a compress or applied directly to the skin through massage.]


5 Scientifically Backed Essential Oils for Allergies

Everything You Need to Know About How to Use Essential Oils for Allergies

Allergies like hay-fever come with a host of symptoms from runny nose to sinus headache, sinus pressure, itchy eyes and throat, and the list goes on. But a number of essential oils may relieve those irritating symptoms. While essential oils do have some side effects, for example, they can be irritating to the skin as well as the mouth, nose, and eyes, they don’t cause side effects like allergy medications, which can make you feel amped up, groggy, and dehydrated. Essential oils are also controversial for pregnant women and children. You should talk to your doctor before using them.

Essential oils can be less expensive than over-the-counter or prescription medications when you consider that just a few drops go a long way. A one-ounce bottle of eucalyptus oil costs around $6, but it takes just a few drops added to a diffuser to have an impact on the respiratory system. Compare this to allergy medications like Claritin and Zyrtec, which range in price from around $15 to $40.

Science is behind the curveball when it comes to essential oils, but according to researchers at the University of Maryland Medical Center, some experts believe that olfactory smell receptors in the brain communicate to other parts of the brain like the amygdala and hippocampus, influencing physical, emotional, and mental health.

Add a few drops of essential oil to a diffuser to open up the airways and reduce inflammation. These essential oils for allergies are worth trying:
1. Eucalyptus

A study published in April 2010 issue of Alternative Medicine Review found that eucalyptus has antimicrobial effects. It can be used to treat colds and flu by opening the respiratory system and reducing inflammation.

2. Rosemary

Rosemary is slightly more mild than eucalyptus, but it also works to open up inflammation in the sinuses. According to a 2011 Penn State University Medical Center study, rosemary oil also has antimicrobial qualities and can neutralize some pathogens.

3. Clove

Clove oil has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial characteristics, and can help to reduce allergy symptoms. Research published in an October 2012 issue of the Brazilian Journal of Microbiology found that clove oil can be used as an antimicrobial to kill internal and external pathogens.

4. Lavender

Lavender is a natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory. It may help reduce irritation and relax your breathing. A study published in the July 2014 issue of the journal Life Sciences, found that lavender essential oil inhalation effectively suppressed inflammation in the airways.

5. Chamomile

Chamomile is another anti-inflammatory that relaxes and relieves sinus headaches. Working with chamomile essential oil months before your hay-fever sets in may boost your immune response and decrease your reaction. One study, published in the November 2010 issue of Molecular Medicine Reports, found that chamomile can be used to treat inflammation of the mucus membranes in the mouth and throat.
When it comes to naturally clearing up your respiratory system, eucalyptus and peppermint oil are both highly effective, according to certified nutrition specialist and natural medicine expert, Dr. Josh Axe. This homemade Vapor Rub by Dr. Axe uses both and helps to open up the airways.

Homemade Vapor Rub

Ingredients

1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup grated beeswax
20 drops peppermint essential oil
20 drops eucalyptus essential oil
Glass Jar

Directions

1. Place olive oil, coconut oil, and beeswax in a jar. Place a saucepan with 2 inches of water over medium low heat. Add jar to saucepan to melt oils.

2. Let cool before adding essential oils. Pour in a jar and allow to set up.

Essential Oil Allergies for Children

Essential oils are potent and even poisonous to children when they haven’t been properly diluted. Take precaution when it comes to the little ones. Here are a few tips:
  • Keep essential oils out of reach for children.
  • Never give them to children orally.
  • Always dilute with a carrier oil.
  • Keep them away from a child’s nose. Applying diluted essential oils to the feet are often best.
  • Introduce them slowly and watch for any reaction.
  • Avoid use on children less than three months old because of extreme skin sensitivity.
  • Stick to really mild oils for babies like chamomile, dill, and lavender.
  • Talk to your child’s pediatrician before use.

Where To Buy Essential Oils

Everything You Need to Know About How to Use Essential Oils for Allergies

Not sure where to buy essential oils? When it comes to choosing essential oils, look for brands that are made purely of the oil and not diluted with fillers like propylene glycol. Bonus if they’re wildcrafted and made from organic plants grown in their indigenous locations. Read labels, and if you can’t tell from the label, call the company. If it’s hard to get a response, choose another company. Mountain Rose Herbs and Plant Therapy are both smaller companies that produce pure, high quality oils.

[Note: Always consult with your primary care physician before using essential oils to treat any type of health concern.]


Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Food Freezing Tips: How Long Can You Store Meals in Your Freezer? [Infographic]

Food preservation in cold temperatures has been practiced since the early days of mankind, although not as effortlessly as today when we have powerful freezers, polythene bags and plastic containers, freezer labels and other utensils that help us better preserve food. We also have the knowledge of how to do it properly.

To make sure defrosted food is as fresh, nutritious and tasty as before freezing it, there are certain rules to follow. For example:
  • Food should always be frozen at the peak of its ripeness/freshness;
  • Some types of food do not freeze well, such as eggs in shell or potatoes;
  • Liquids expand in cold temps, so it’s important to leave enough room in the container when freezing beverages, etc.
Most importantly, we must know how long we can keep each type of food in the freezer before it loses its taste or even becomes unsafe to eat (if air gets in).

The following infographic is created as a guide to help you figure out how long you can keep meat, seafood, ice cream and other food products in the freezer. Keep it on your fridge or freezer for quick reference when planning meals.




Tuesday, July 19, 2016

10 Vegan Recipes Worthy of a Cookout


For the non-animal product eating, summer cookouts can occasionally feel, how shall we say, limiting: ribs! Burgers! Cheeseburgers! Ice cream! Potato salad swimming in mayonnaise! This — despite an otherwise excellent selection of picnic sides — can be a little discouraging. But! Cookouts need not be so — and vegan folks need not just linger by the spread of side dishes hoping for an ear of corn or a frozen veggie burger, either.

Here are 10 delicious vegan recipes from Food 52's Gena Hamshaw worthy of a summer afternoon barbecue:

Creamy Vegan Avocado Potato Salad

https://food52.com/recipes/54970-creamy-vegan-avocado-potato-salad

Tempeh Kebabs with Homemade BBQ Sauce

Sweet, tangy homemade barbecue sauce is a perfect complement to the nutty, earthy taste of tempeh. 
 
https://food52.com/recipes/29199-tempeh-kebabs-with-homemade-barbecue-sauce

Grilled Avocado Halves with Cumin-Spiced Quinoa and Black Bean Salad 

Creamy, satisfying avocado meets a hassle-free, versatile quinoa salad that works on its own as an anytime summer side dish.

https://food52.com/recipes/36747-grilled-avocado-halves-with-cumin-spiced-quinoa-and-black-bean-salad

Black Bean and Corn Burgers

These veggie burgers are a little bit spicy, thanks to a mixture of paprika, cumin, and chili, and a little bit sweet, thanks to fresh summer corn. 

https://food52.com/recipes/23748-black-bean-and-corn-burgers

Penne with Sweet Summer Vegetables, Pine Nuts, and Herbs

Think of this recipe as summer in a bowl. The sweet corn, bursting cherry tomatoes, and tender zucchini lighten up a savory, satisfying bowl of pasta. 

https://food52.com/recipes/18440-penne-with-sweet-summer-vegetables-pine-nuts-and-herbs

Vegan Sweet Potato Biscuits

A sweet or savory spin on biscuits that feature sweet potato for a tender, moist interior and a very pretty golden color.

https://food52.com/recipes/56321-vegan-sweet-potato-biscuits

Vegan Summer Succotash

The combination of sweet vegetables and buttery coconut oil makes this easy dinner an irresistible delight.

https://food52.com/recipes/23077-vegan-summer-succotash

 Perfect Vegan Pie Crust

This pie crust is totally authentic and yet totally dairy free -- all thanks to the magic of coconut oil. 

https://food52.com/recipes/19559-perfect-vegan-pie-crust

Strawberry Vanilla Coconut Ice Cream

This rich, dreamy ice cream -- which no one would ever guess is vegan -- benefits from fresh ingredients: seasonal, freshly picked strawberries and fresh vanilla bean. 

https://food52.com/recipes/23281-strawberry-vanilla-coconut-ice-cream

No-Fuss Vegan Cornbread 

This cornbread is a perfect balance of savory and sweet, rich and light.

https://food52.com/recipes/31697-no-fuss-vegan-cornbread

[via Food 52]

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

26 Vegan Recipes For Comfort Food

1. Butternut Squash Mac ‘n Cheeze: Two Ways
Butternut squash pureed into macaroni and cheese just sounds like a match made in heaven, doesn’t it? It is also a fun way to sneak in another veggie. Get the recipe here.

 

2. Nirvana Enchilada Casserole 
Layers of corn tortilla sopping up spicy, fragrant, red sauce then overstuffed with mushroom, pinto beans and roasted potatoes. On top is a voluptuous cashew creme that will have you rolling your eyes to the back of your head like a zombie. An enchilada zombie.


3. Matzo Ball Soup
These matzo balls are firm and hold together awesomely well. They’re soft on the outside, but delightfully dense and toothsome in the middle. Try it out for yourself.


4. Tofu Popcorn Chick’n (+ it's gluten free)
This tofu chick’n recipe is so versatile. You can eat them on their own as popcorn chick’n or nuggets. You can put it in a wrap or a sandwich, on a pizza – so many possibilities! Try it!


5. Broccoli & Cheeze Soup
Why should dairy eaters have all the creamed soup fun? Create this delicious vegan option, instead.


6. Almost Famous Fried Pickles
It’s hard to believe the pickle can be improved upon, until you fry it up and taste it for yourself. Get the recipe here.

7. Peanut Butter Banana Chip Cookies
In this amazing recipe the sugar content is fairly low. They aren’t cakey, but not too crisp either. Somewhere in the middle with a pleasant crunch and a complex sweetness. And of course, they have a lovely peanut buttery undertone.


8. Mushroom Stout Pie With Potato Biscuits
A fluffy potato biscuit soaking up a deeply savory gravy that is at once mysterious and familiar. The stout really gives this dish an allure, and two kinds of mushrooms make it meaty and earthy and just umami like nobody’s business. And ya know, for a special occasion, it’s not too fussy.


9. Crispy Baked Onion Rings
Crispy, flavorful, and good-for-you, these onion rings make a great snack or addition to any meal. I could also see a big batch of these being made for a party served with a homemade dip. Can also be made gluten-free.


10. Vegetable Lasagna With Kale, Beluga Lentils & Carrots
This delicious lasagna recipe will make you forget about meat and cheese with kale and lentils!! Get the recipe here.


11. Creamed Kale
Nondairy milk and cashews combine to create a creamy sauce for kale or your favorite leafy greens. Try it for yourself!


12. Homemade Vegan Caesar Cocktail
Is this a vegan version of a Caesar cocktail or is it an adapted version of the Bloody Mary? I can’t decide. Whatever you call it, this is one fantastic drink with a whopping 4 servings of vegetables per 500 ml glass. Be sure to add the seasonings to taste and you can’t go wrong. Bottom's up!


13. Chocolate Cupcakes With Avocado Chocolate Icing
They say avocados and chocolate are brain foods right? (I don’t know who says, but it seems like something I might have read somewhere). I know it sounds weird and maybe a little gross to put them together but it actually works to make really thick and rich chocolatey frosting. Try out this recipe.


14. Creamy Polenta And Mushrooms
Creamy polenta, chickpeas and a mix of sautéed mushrooms & tarragon. This recipe is sure to be a main stay.


15. Mushroom “Alfredo”
Almonds blended with almond milk make a rich sauce for this vegan pasta dish. We like the flavor and smooth texture of spelt pasta and the way rotini traps the sauce, but feel free to substitute your favorite pasta. Get the recipe here.


16. Mozzarella Sticks
For the full diner experience, crack open a jar of pickles, whip up some vegan milkshakes, and make sure you have marinara sauce on hand. And remember, all food tastes better around 2AM. Dig into the recipe here.


 17. Double Cinnamon Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
A double dose of cinnamon gives these cookies a wonderful spicy aroma and even bigger cinnamon flavor.  Try them out now!


18. Vegan Chili
Hearty, healthy, and always ready to make you happy, this chili makes for a dependable partner. Whip up a batch with this popular recipe.

19. The Philly Reuben Sandwich 
A hefty sandwich, filled with sauerkraut and tangy Russian dressing that oozed out of the edges of the sandwich with each bite. Filled with marinated seitan and wrapped in warm rye bread. Try the recipe yourself


20. Spinach “Chicotta” Stuffed Pasta Shells
“Chicotta” is a new creation that will change the way you look at plant-based cheeses. It’s a ricotta-like cheese made from… chickpeas! With just some chickpeas and a few other simple ingredients, you can whip up the creamiest and most delicious non-dairy cheese you’ve ever tasted. Try this recipe tonight.
 
 

21. Miso Shitake Soba Soup
This soup is full of warming healing ingredients (shiitakes, ginger, miso, etc)… and would be the perfect thing if you’re under the weather… figuratively or quite literally. Get the recipe here.


22. Brownie Ice Cream Sandwich
Being a sandwich, this is totally a legit lunch. Grab a pink of Trader Joe's "Soy Creamy" vegan vanilla ice cream! Get the recipe here.


23. Creamy Broccoli And Mushroom Pasta
The vegan parmesan goes so well with the creamy mushrooms, the salty broccoli and the toasted pine nuts with the touch of heat from the red chili flakes. Yum yum yum! Try this recipe tonight!



24. Butterfinger Candy
This recipe is very simple, but you need to know two things before we begin: you must have a candy thermometer for this recipe, and you must read through the entire recipe before you start. Everything comes together quickly, and I certainly don’t wish a candy disaster on anyone.


25. Vegan Big Mac
Not only is this burger healthier and yummier than the original, it is also extremely easy and crazily filling! What a great way to impress your dinner guests with a vegan Big Mac! Try this recipe now!


26. Easy Cheezy Pizza
Nothing beats a yummy cheezy pizza…. Mmmmmm.  Get the recipe here.


[via Buzzfeed]

Friday, May 13, 2016

8 Healing Herbs You Can Grow

Please note: Healing herbs are not meant to be medicinal, and that you must be careful that any plant you ingest is safe for you and your family.

1. Chamomile

Chamomile is known by almost everyone for it’s ability to ease us into sleep, when steeped into a tea. It also is used for stomach upset. Dry the flowers for long term storage in ziploc bags, or use them fresh steeped into a tea. This is a gentle herb that can be used for children as well.

The best variety to grow, and the most commonly used for tea is German Chamomile. This is an annual that grows into a bushy plant about 2 feet tall. It prefers well draining soil, full sun to part shade, and moderate water. Chamomile is easy to grow from seed.

2. Feverfew

Feverfew (Tanacetum) has had some scientific studies done on it’s use for migraine headaches, with some positive results. Brewed into a tea, feverfew is best used as a preventative for migraines.

Grow Feverfew from seed, sprinkled onto the soil in early spring. Like Chamomile, it needs light to germinate, so don’t cover, just water in. Give it plenty of sun and you will be rewarded with hundreds of tiny button daisy flowers on a 20 inch bush. This is also an annual, but tends to self seed liberally. Also like Chamomile, brew flowers into a tea.

3. Lavender

Lavender is used to ease tension, and is generally used in aromatherapy… that is, the scent is used in oils and infusions. It is also edible, the flowers being used in salads or drinks, and can also be brewed into any tea.

Easy to grow, lavender loves the sun, and is drought resistant. It does fine in poor soil, but the soil must be well drained. It will not tolerate heavy soil. Several different types and colors are available , the most common is English Lavender, but French Lavender and Spanish Lavender are popular as well, although less hardy. The varieties bloom at slightly different times, but usually from later spring through mid summer, with another short flush in the fall.  A short lived perennial, it will come back for several years, but will then tend to die back, stating in the center of the plant. Luckily, you will find many volunteers popping up ready to take it’s place. Did we mention, it’s gorgeous as well?



4. Peppermint

Peppermint is one of the tummy trouble remedies I actually use, and so do my kids… It really does help relieve nausea and even stomach cramps. It can be energizing as well.

Peppermint is an aggressive plant that can take over a garden if you let it! Although I love growing any kind of mint, if you don’t want to be pulling it like a weed, plant it in pots. Prefers afternoon shade in hot areas, can tolerate some shade in any area. Perennial that comes back every year. Grows best in fertile, moist soil. Flowers are not showy. Foliage is aromatic, and leaves are edible in salads, sauces and can even be frozen in ice cubes to refresh cold drinks.

5. Thyme (Thymol)

Thyme is a powerful antiseptic and astringent. Used for coughs and sore throats, it is gargled with or made into a tea, usually in combination with other herbs. Also used as a disinfectant spray.

Thyme is an herb that has become popular with several decorative varieties in the last few years, including one of my favorites, ‘Doone Valley Thyme’ with its pink flowers. Flowers are tiny but plentiful, and the plant loves sun and tolerates drought. Varieties exist from the low growing ‘creeping Thyme’, to the parent variety, common thyme. Common thyme has been said to have the highest level of Thymol, or oils. A semi woody shrub, it is useful in the garden as well as the kitchen.  Easy plant to grow.



6. Garlic

Garlic is one of those herbs that continues to prove it’s health benefits. Long known for it’s cardiovascular health benefits, it is also used as an anti viral and anti fungal… In my opinion, the best way to take advantage of the healing powers of garlic is to cook with it!

Garlic is easy to grow, especially if you already grow vegetables. Each clove from a garlic bulb will grow into it’s own bulb, and yes, you can plant from grocery store garlic. Simply soak them in a jar of water with a tablespoon of baking soda before planting, to prevent fungal diseases.

Plant garlic in fall, and allow to overwinter. In June or July, when the green stalks are 3/4 brown, gently dig up bulbs and tie together several bunches, then hang to dry. Store in a dry, cool place. Make really good pasta!



7. Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm is used in a tea for anxiety. Just pick the leaves as desired and brew.

Grow lemon balm in  partly shady area for best results. Rich, moist soil will give you the best plants with the highest amount of oils in the leaves. Being a tender perennial, it will not survive any but the modest winters.



8. Parsley

Lastly, we have parsley. More than a garnish at the side of the plate, parsley helps cleanse the liver, flush the system of excess water and soothes the stomach.

Parsley prefers part shade and rich soil, and does well grown indoors in a sunny windowsill. I prefer to grow the flat leaved variety. Give afternoon shade in hot areas. Harvest by cuttings leaves as needed.