Ar­ti­choke vera gel. 9Chick­weed essences pow­ders

Living Now - - Summer Health Now -

(Cy­nara

scoly­mus) sup­ports di­ges­tive and liver func­tion. With the in­creased al­co­hol and sugar in­take of the sum­mer sea­son, our liv­ers might take a beat­ing. Globe ar­ti­choke pro­tects and re­stores the liver. It’s also a mild bit­ter tonic that works at mul­ti­ple points along the di­ges­tive tract to in­crease the release of di­ges­tive en­zymes and bile. With in­creased bile come softer stools; so this one is also a gen­tle lax­a­tive. Avoid if you have gall­stones. 6Aloe

Mov­ing on from in­di­ges­tion and onto sum­mer sun­burn. Aloe vera gel is a tra­di­tional cool­ing balm for sun­burn. Fresh from the plant is best – just make sure you cut the spines off first! Bottled aloe vera gels are also avail­able. The resin of Aloe bar­baden­sis is also a pow­er­ful lax­a­tive

(Stel­laria me­dia)

oint­ment for in­sect bites, wounds, and burns. This sooth­ing, cool­ing, mul­ti­pur­pose oint­ment is avail­able from health food shops or can be made up by your herbal­ist. I al­ways have a jar by the bed to rub onto itchy sand fly and mos­quito bites, and it works like magic.

( Witha­nia

som­nifera). If there were one herb I could spike the pub­lic wa­ter sup­ply with, it would be Ash­wa­ganda. It is one of a num­ber of herbal adap­to­gens, a fam­ily of herbs that en­hances our abil­ity to deal with stress – men­tal, phys­i­cal, and en­vi­ron­men­tal. The hol­i­day sea­son can take its toll on our adrenals and leave us fa­tigued. Ash­wa­ganda comes from the Ayurvedic tra­di­tion and trans­lates to ‘strength of a bull’. I re­cently used it to re­cover from giv­ing birth and tol­er­ate new­born-in­duced sleep de­pri­va­tion, and it’s the rea­son I’m able to write this ar­ti­cle! Add a tea­spoon of the pow­der to smooth­ies or have your herbal­ist make up a tinc­ture for you.

(Pas­si­flora

in­car­nata). Re­lieves any anx­i­ety sur­round­ing fam­ily re­unions, and is great for ir­ri­tabil­ity too! Along with mag­ne­sium, it’s lovely for tension headaches that can pop up af­ter too many hours stuck in­doors with a dron­ing rel­a­tive, or scream­ing kids. 12Flower

for stress, such as Bach Res­cue Rem­edy, or Aus­tralian Bush Flower Essences Emer­gency Essence, are es­sen­tials to have on hand when things just seem un­man­age­able. Black-eyed Susan (Aus­tralian Bush Flower Essence) is also good for im­pa­tience and ir­ri­tabil­ity. 13Cal­cium

flu­o­ride tis­sue salts are great for joint pain, mus­cu­lar strains and in­jured lig­a­ments re­sult­ing from overly bois­ter­ous foot­ball games and pool­side slips. 14Ar­nica

(Ar­nica mon­tana) is a bril­liant anti-in­flam­ma­tory and anal­gesic and can be used top­i­cally for bruises, sprains, and in­flamed in­sect bites as a cream. Home­o­pathic prepa­ra­tions are also avail­able. 15Green

such as bar­ley grass, chlorella, and spir­ulina help pro­mote detox­i­fi­ca­tion, and are an­ti­in­flam­ma­tory as they pro­vide an­tiox­i­dants – things we all need a lit­tle more of dur­ing this sea­son to com­bat the ef­fects of stress. They can help sup­ple­ment the lack of green leafy veg­eta­bles of a busy life­style or when drought strikes and the gar­den greens die!

Re­mem­ber, foods are our most im­por­tant source of nu­tri­tion – food is medicine! But many of us can do with an ex­tra boost of just a few nu­tri­ents and herbs to keep us hum­ming hap­pily along over sum­mer. If you have spe­cific health con­cerns, team up with an in­te­gra­tive doc­tor, nu­tri­tion­ist or natur­opath to help you get through sum­mer in one piece, and feel­ing great. n

Casey Con­roy is a holis­tic di­eti­tian, nu­tri­tion­ist, herbal­ist in-train­ing, yoga and Acroyoga teacher who loves kale sautéed in but­ter and dark chocolate. She is the founder of Funky For­est Health & Well­be­ing on the Gold Coast, and ad­vo­cates a light-hearted and prac­ti­cal ap­proach to nat­u­ral health.

The third point – stom­ach merid­ian ST3, which im­proves cataracts and swelling un­der the eyes – is lo­cated on the cheek­bone at the same level as your nos­trils, about one-and-one-half fin­gers out­wards. Use three fin­gers and you are sure to touch this point. Do gen­tle cir­cu­lar move­ments. Al­ter­na­tively, you can also just press and release.

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