11-24-2015 Cold and Remedies and an update on Drug Shortages

Specific cold and flu treatments.

We have always talked on how to take care of the dreaded flus and colds. But its been rare that we have given individual recipes.

Now a cold formula is as individual as, well, individuals. This is because herbalism is both a science and an art. While the principals behind the basic skills needed to make them are the same, regional differences in available plants, as well as the personal preferences of the herbalist result in a wide variety of formulas.

Lets talk about some of the tops herbs for the upcoming season

Echinacea: This herb’s main claim to fame is its ability to enhance general immunity: It stimulates white blood cells, one of the body’s first lines of defence against illness; increases production of interferon and other virus-fighting substances; and increases immune cells’ ability to engulf and destroy invading microbes.

Astragalus: This is well-known in China as a tonic and adaptogen. One study,

Echinacea, Astragalus Glycyrrhiza glabra On immune cell activation, show that it boosts the immune system and fights viruses, bacteria, and inflammation. Taken regularly over time, it can provide ongoing ­immune-system support.

Elderberry: This is one of most herbalists top 5 herbs. It can inhibit the enzyme that flu viruses use to penetrate cell membranes. This study, Randomised study on Elderberry details on how in a study it worked on Influenza A and B

Garlic: It’s benefits health in many ways, including its ability to boost immune function and inhibit or kill a broad range of microbes. Test-tube studies show that garlic is active against viruses that cause colds and flus. Some of garlic’s active ingredients are eliminated through our lungs, right where you want them to target infections.

Licorice root: Somewhat like echinacea, licorice contains polysaccharides that can spark the body’s production of interferon (proteins released by virus-infected cells to prevent the virus from multiplying) and activate various white blood cells.

Ephedra: This contains ephedrine, a chemical related to the hormone epinephrine, also known as adren­aline, and the synthetic decongestant pseudoephedrine. It is found in the wild as what we call Mormon Tea, Squaw tea etc. Ephedrine clears up respiratory congestion and relaxes the airways. At the same time, though, ephedra stimulates the cardiovascular and central nervous systems.

And lets not forget the essential oils. They have a big place in your med kit.

Peppermint and Eucalyptus: These are often included in commercial products such as nasal decongestants, throat lozenges, cough drops, chest rubs, and inhalants. Each herb contains compounds that relax the airways and open congested sinuses and nasal passages.

Lavender: By itself, lavender is both a gentle and effective decongestant. And it’s scent is so relaxing its what we call palliative care. It makes you feel better.

This is by no means a complete list of the herbs and oils available. This is just the tip of the herbal iceberg. That’s what the main topic of this weeks show is about. How to choose and then combine and administer.

Part 2 is a bit of WHY we use and teach herbal medicine. For one reason or another we

see in healthcare a shortage of needed drugs. This link, Current Drug Shortages has a list of all the drugs on shortage. Now let’s think a bit on this,

Lidocaine Injection Nov 12, 2015. Lidocaine. I use a BUTT load of. On shortage.

Sodium Chloride 0.9% Injection Bags, Oct 30, 2015 Normal Saline. We are short of Normal Saline

The shortages we have are so frustrating. There at time is no real reason except for 1 Lack of materials. 2 Greed. 3 Government. These 3 reasons alone are enough to learn some herbal medicine.

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