The Chinese have used herbs for medicinal purposes for over 4000 years. Today, the medical community, who once shunned the use of herbs for medicinal purposes, is starting to take notice of the benefits of using herbs. Herbs are nutritionally sound and can offer a healthy, natural alternative to nourish and heal the body. Herbs can also give the body the nutrients that the body does not always get through a regular diet.
Herbs can include leaves, bark, berries, roots, seeds, stems, gums and flowers. They can also come in many forms including tablets, capsules, bark pieces, powders, extracts, creams, lotions, oils, liquids and salves. When buying herbs of any kind, it is important to look for the word “standardized” on the label. Because most herbs are not FDA approved, the label on herbs provides important safety and dosage information. When purchasing herbs you should look for freshness. Those that are loose and sold in bulk have almost no nutritional value. Instead opt for freeze-dried over air-dried herbs.
Herbs have always been used as a weight loss remedy. There are many herbs that can be used both safely and efficiently to suppress appetite and help control weight loss. For people need or want to shed a few pounds but who already eat healthy and participate in regular exercise, adding natural herbs to the diet can help aid in weight control. Herbs may not be a good choice for those seeking to loose a lot of weight in a short amount of time. Some herbs do have side effects and some should be taken carefully. As with any weight loss program or diet, caution should be used and it should be used in conjunction with regular diet and exercise. The following are good starters to help you curb your appetite with herbs.
Brazilian Cocoa: This herb is almost identical to caffeine. Both stimulate the central nervous system and increases metabolic rate. Brazilian Cocoa has a very mild diuretic effect. The side effect of this herb is that is also similar to caffeine. When taken in excess, it can cause restlessness, trembling, nervousness and anxiety.
Cayenne: Cayenne pepper when added to food can help stimulate capsaicin, which stimulates saliva. It also stimulates digestion and can help accelerate the metabolism at a safe level.
Green Tea: Green tea is a natural stimulant that acts much like coffee, but has the added benefit of vitamin C and antioxidants. By steeping the tea quickly or for a longer period of time, it is possible to control the strength of the tea. Green tea is available as a capsule formula, but works better in the body as a liquid.
Evening Primrose: This herb has been shown to be effective as a natural alternative to help reduce cholesterol levels and help people who do not process fats correctly loose weight.
Seaweed: Seaweed is a good natural source of trace mineral and is a natural thyroid stimulant. It is widely available in capsule or tablets forms at many health food stores.
Psyllium: Studies show that the granules of these seeds consumed with water before a meal helps control the appetite. This herb causes an instant reduction of appetite by making the stomach feel full. The full feeling leads to less caloric and fat consumption.
Queen’s Flower: Queen’s flower has been shown to be one of the most effective plant used in alternative weight control and diabetes.
Herbs can be taken in using different methods. Infusion involves using the soft part of the herb plant including the leaves, flowers, and the whole herb. Infusion of herbs is much like tea is made. Boiling water is poured over the plant and allowed to steep. Then liquid is then strained and the liquid is consumed. Honey may be added to the infusion liquid to improve the bitter taste. With decoction, the tough part of the plant-the bark, root, twig and stem are simmered for about thirty minutes and then consumed.
Juice can also be made using small pieces of the herb. The juice is taken right after it is made because the vitamin content declines rapidly. This method works well for getting vitamins and are sensitive to heat. Tinctures are often considered the best way to take herbal supplements. It is a good way to take well-preserved herbs. During this method, the herb is soaked in alcohol or a water mixture. The mixture is pressed and this makes the tincture.
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Gregg Hall is a business consultant and author for many online and offline businesses and lives in Navarre Florida with his 16 year old son. Get these and other great health products at www.shop4betterhealth.com
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