A Quick Guide to Natural Remedies

There are some natural remedies that work for a variety of ailments, but — as with anything — they must be used correctly and with care.

| August 2016

  • Apple cider vinegar isn’t just a delicious addition to recipes, but it may also help treat anything from acne to heartburn.
    Photo by Fotolia/ksu_ok
  • “Home Remedies: An A-Z Guide of Quick and Easy Natural Cures” by Meredith Hale.
    Photo courtesy of Wellfleet Press

Throughout history, civilizations have compiled natural remedies for health and healing. But where should you begin sifting through this flood of possible solutions to solve the problem plaguing you? From supplements to herbs and plants to “kitchen cures” straight from your fridge and pantry, Meredith Hale’s book Home Remedies (Wellfleet Press, 2015) is a collection of the best cures for common ailments. Whether you’re plagued by fever, toothaches, insomnia, or anything in between, this book contains a comprehensive and unique list of natural fixes for your illness.

You can purchase this book from the Mother Earth Living store: Home Remedies.

Home Remedy Superstars

As you read these pages, you’ll discover that certain remedies come up again and again. That’s because certain plants and kitchen cures are used to treat a wide variety of ailments, because they have natural anti-inflammatory and/or antimicrobial properties. (“Antimicrobial” refers to medicines that fight microorganisms, such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses.) Here are just a few of the repeat remedies in this book:

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera’s history dates back six thousand years to ancient Egypt, where it was presented as a burial gift to deceased pharaohs. Historically used to heal wounds and treat skin conditions, today aloe vera gel is found in hundreds of skincare products, including sunblocks and after-sun lotions.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Is there anything apple cider vinegar can’t treat? Also known as ACV, this popular ingredient in salad dressings and marinades is used for ailments as diverse as acne, dandruff, food poisoning, heartburn, jock itch, kidney stones, psoriasis, and more. Cheap and easily accessible, ACV has antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties that make it a staple in any home-remedy arsenal.

Baking Soda

Sodium bicarbonate—also known as baking soda— does more than just freshen up your refrigerator. Used by ancient Egyptians in its natural form as a cleansing agent, baking soda has a number of contemporary medicinal uses, including treating body odor, poison ivy, calluses, heartburn, and the itching of chickenpox.

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