The coronavirus pandemic invites us to ponder on how we might have ignored what the environment offers. If you think about it, nature did not allow us to contract ailments without offering a salve from plants—even those that grow in the wild. These plants are not only important for erosion control, reforestation, and nature preservation, but they’re also essential for healing. After all, many modern medicines are based on past home remedies, which tells you something: some home remedies do have a scientific basis.
Take, for instance, the natural malaria treatment, quinine, from the cinchona bark, which turned out to be good for atrial arrhythmia. Molds, which were used for treating infections in ancient Greece, India, and Egypt, eventually led to penicillin, as a byproduct of the fungus, Penicillium. How many more medicines have we not discovered from current home remedies?
Medicine from Nature
Despite the rapid development of science and medicine, home remedies have not lost their following – and may never will. It will just be a matter of producing the remedies cost-efficiently and quickly to benefit more people. We shouldn’t ignore how nature can heal us. Here are some really good home remedies.
Honey is often used to make sweets and other delectable desserts. But by itself, honey contains a lot of useful properties that can help us health-wise. It’s one of the usual remedies for sore throat and cough (maybe that’s the reason menthol cough drops are often honey-flavored). Mixed with natural spices, honey is also effective in suppressing the common cold. Thanks to its anti-bacterial properties, honey is also used for dressing light wounds. Of course, caution must be exercised, as some people might be allergic to honey.
While commonly used as a spice to add flavor, turmeric packs a lot of health benefits for short and long-term healing. Turmeric can be used to alleviate pain and inflammation. It can be as effective as other over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen in treating immediate pain. Turmeric helps increase antioxidants that strengthen your immunity, helping you fight or avoid diseases. It helps manage heart ailments as well.
Ginger is a sturdy plant that grows almost throughout the year, making it readily accessible and cheap. Like honey, it is a popular remedy for sore throat because of its anti-inflammatory properties that relieve itchiness in the throat. It’s boiled to make ginger tea. But the benefit of ginger tea doesn’t stop with sore throat; it’s also helpful in treating pharyngitis and tonsillitis and boosting the immune system. If you’re not a tea person, you can opt for ginger candy or eating ginger raw.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has been included in home remedy books and is a staple in kitchens for being a multipurpose ingredient for cooking, cleaning, and healing. When applied topically, apple cider vinegar acts as a toner to deter acne breakout. It helps smoothen and improve the texture of the skin and absorbs excess oils as well. It can be used as a remedy for common bug bites, like mosquito bites. It alleviates itchiness and soothes the skin. Interestingly, apple cider vinegar also has long-term health benefits. Studies have shown that it can aid with managing type 2 diabetes and lowering blood sugar.
Of course, these home remedies are temporary; if symptoms of any kind continue, a visit to the doctor is necessary. However, as these ingredients are found in nature (and in your kitchen and pantry), it’s to your benefit to take advantage of them for temporary ailments. Also, since they are popular ingredients used in a wide variety of dishes, you might as well use them as a regular cooking component.