Natural Alternatives for Depression

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 07-12-2015

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depression 4

 

There are many alternative treatments available to choose from that can help with depression. Some of them will help to relax and de-stress you, which is half the battle, and others will help to balance your glands, get your circulation moving, open up the channels of energy that have become stagnated, and more. Scientists still don’t have a clear grasp on why these alternative treatments work, but the fact is that many of them do. In fact, they often work faster than any conventional chemical medication would normally work too!

While plenty of doctors continue to dole out chemical medications like they are going out of style, did you know that many of the very medications that they give to people for symptoms like stress and anxiety can actually cause symptoms of depression? Medications like Valium, for example, can actually cause symptoms. Many high blood pressure medications do the same thing. Also some sleeping pills can too. And one of the worst “drugs” of all that isn’t often thought of as a drug is alcohol. Alcohol is one of the biggest offenders in the world of depression. So, if you are suffering from depression, and you drink, then you may have found your problem. The only solution is to stop. (That is one of the advantages of living in a alcohol free country like Kuwait).

As we have said, depression is a huge problem that is also dangerous, due to the chance of suicide (and even murder) among its sufferers. For the past few weeks we have been talking about various methods to deal with depression, and this week we will continue on that quest for a cure, and talk about body therapies that can help people suffering from depression.

A lot of people swear by chiropractic for treating depression. Since depression seems to be an organic disorder coupled with a psychological one, chiropractors say that with certain spinal adjustments depression can be lessened or overcome completely. It’s easy to say that but can it be backed up scientifically? Yes it can! Recent scientific study has shown certain chiropractic adjustments (particularly of the cervical spine) to be extremely effective against depression. More research will naturally have to be done in order to show how and why this works, but it stands to reason that whenever you have decreased blood flow to the brain, there is a good chance that something bad is going to happen, so it is possible that certain forms of depression are a result of a lack of blood flow to the brain, for whatever reason. Chiropractic also helps to open all the channels of the flow of energy in our bodies, so once everything is returned back to normal, the symptoms of depression just seem to magically disappear. While it may sound a little simplistic and far fetched, the fact of the matter is that some of the best alternative medical treatments are the simplest ones, so don’t discount anything until you have given it a fair chance. (I’m sure the only reason more research into alternative methods of treatment for depression and other disorders hasn’t been done, is because the big pharmaceutical companies aren’t backing such studies, because there is no way that they can make money off of them).

Chinese Traditional Medicine has been successfully used for the treatment of depression for centuries. The treatment for depression is acupressure (while acupuncture is also widely used, I don’t prefer it since it is more invasive and acupressure can do the same thing with an experienced and gifted practitioner). Along with acupressure come deep breathing exercises, which are also very effective against depression.

the healing power of breath           the oxygen advantage

Deep muscle, deep tissue, and other forms of strenuous body massage are effective against depression. It seems that any treatment that is done that effectively reduces stress, tight muscles, pressure on the spine and skull, and gets the circulation moving is effective against various forms of depression. Again, more research needs to be done to figure out why this is so, but does it really matter to the sufferer? It probably doesn’t.

the reflexology atlas

Reflexology is one of the effective forms of bodywork as well. Modern reflexology is generally done on the feet, but it can also be done on the hands and other areas of the body. Like other forms of body treatments, reflexology is effective in getting the circulation moving again, opening up blockages, getting the body’s natural energy moving again, and more. It also naturally relaxes the muscles, and balances the glands, which, in turn, helps to reduce the stress reaction in the body that makes people feel so miserable.

organic yoga cushion

Yoga (which is more like a self-therapy when it comes to body work) has been reported to be highly effective in the treatment and management of people suffering from depression. The only drawback with it is that in order to do yoga, the person must actually get up and do it. Sometimes people who are depressed simply can’t make themselves get up and move. In those cases, some other form of intervention is preferable. Ayurvedic massage can be effective in the cases where the people themselves are too depressed to do yoga.

organic yoga pants

 

Another body technique that has been reported effective against depression is the Alexander Technique. Apparently the changes in the posture that come about with Alexander treatment help the body back into a natural state of homeostasis, and all the glands, vessels, etc, can get to working properly again. Thus, the body returns to a relaxed and stress-free state. While I don’t know of anyone in Kuwait who practices the Alexander Technique, if you travel overseas, you may be able to find someone who does it, particularly in Western countries.

alexander technique

There are many other forms of body work that we haven’t mentioned here, but you have the idea. If there are other forms that you are aware of, try them! Whatever action you take to help yourself will be beneficial as long as you are confident that it will. No one needs to be depressed, and each person must take steps on the journey for a depression-free life himself, so take the first step and get out there are do something about it!

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

Quick and Easy Natural Remedies for Depression

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 20-11-2015

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depression 3

 

When you are feeling down, it might be because something awful has happened in your life, or it might just be that you are bored. So, how about getting out there and taking up a hobby? Think of all the things you love to do and choose one or two of them to do on a regular basis. If you can’t think of anything, then why not try something completely new and different? You’d be surprised at what you might end up liking! Don’t limit yourself to certain things though, keep your mind open and go for something unusual or something that you would never have thought of yourself as doing. Whatever it is might just be the answer you’ve been looking for, and you’ll never know till you try it. You might even make some new friends while doing your new hobby!

    matchitecture set                wool felting set

 

Doctors are quick to give medication for depression and other problems, when medication is not necessarily the answer, and it definitely isn’t the first line of action in any case. Why take medication when you can get similar results from fairly simple changes in your life, along with some simple dietary rules that aren’t THAT difficult to follow. If you go to the doctor for something like depression or any other kind of anxiety disorder, don’t be quick to jump on the chemical medication bandwagon. Wait for a while and take your cash in hand. There is almost no time when this ordeal happens that medication is a good answer. So, leave that market to the hucksters and others, but in order to keep your good health at a maximum, pay attention to your own body, make sure that you take as few medications as possible, and stay as natural as you can.

 lemon balm herb  linden flowers herb  st johns wort

There are some natural alternatives to the chemical medications that conventional medicine prescribes for depression and other similar ailments. They act to relax, reduce the stress reaction, and calm the nerves, as well as to balance glands. These are herbs such as lemon balm, lemon verbena, linden flowers, chamomile, lavender, Siberian ginseng, valerian, fennel seed, mint, rose petals, licorice root, basil, gingko, rosemary, marjoram, and Saint John’s wort. These can be infused as a tea, with only a teaspoon of the dried herb for a half or whole liter of water in a thermos. You do not boil the herbs, but only the water, and then put the herbs in the hot water and cover it for 15 minutes or so, until a light colored tea has been gotten. Then you can drink that throughout the day. You can choose any one or more of these herbs, but whichever you choose, make sure that you still only use one teaspoon total of the herbs for your tea. It shouldn’t be too strong. Remember, as always, less is more.

     lavender oil   melissa oil     chamomile oil    jasmine oil    ylang ylang oil

Essential oils can also be used for the same purpose and they are basically the same as the herbs. Lavender is good, as is marjoram, basil, rose, lemon balm (Melissa), chamomile, neroli, patchouli, lemongrass, sandalwood, frankincense, myrrh, ylang ylang, rosemary, jasmine, clary sage, bergamot, geranium, orange, and grapefruit essential oils are all good for depression, so choose oils that you like the aroma of, and use them in oils (with just a few drops), inhale them, burn them (in oil burners to diffuse the aroma in your home), in the bath (a few drops in the very warm bath water), and some people even put a drop or two in their tea (although I don’t recommend this unless you are under the care of an aromatherapy professional).

It is important to remember though, that if you decide to try herbal teas or essential oils you can’t take chemical drugs along with them. While herbs and oils are generally extremely safe to use, you must still consider the fact that they are natural medications nonetheless, and will react in your body, so you mustn’t use the two together. Also, if you are under the care of a medical, psychiatric, and/or psychological professional, please make sure that you inform them of your desire to try going natural for your problems, and if you find that they are not very receptive to your wishes, then perhaps you would be better off finding another professional who is more receptive and willing to help you and work with you in your quest to become a healthier, happier person.

stresstabs

When you are depressed it is important to make sure that you are getting the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that your body needs, so make sure that you are taking a good multivitamin (preferably without iron). A good one on the market here is Stresstabs. They are very inexpensive and loaded with high levels of important vitamins and minerals. You might also want to take evening primrose oil or borage oil as well. I personally don’t like fish oil capsules, just because when they melt in my stomach they make me feel ill and I feel like I’m breathing fish (which isn’t pleasant), but if you don’t suffer from those problems then by all means, fish oil is another great supplement. And, if you have been tested and you know that you need a certain supplement, then you really need to make sure that you are getting it. If your iron is low, then take iron, or preferably get natural iron from eating good, wholesome foods with iron, such as liver, dark green leafy vegetables and the like. We mentioned food last week, but again, please remember that there is no replacement for a good diet. Keep away from the dairy products if you suffer from depression. Also, too many carbohydrates, particularly refined ones will keep you feeling lethargic and miserable, which will make you feel worse than before. Additionally, some research is pointing to the idea that for some people the diet they are eating is what is actually causing the depression in the first place, and that has been my own hypothesis all along. So, if you are suffering from depression, check your diet and lifestyle, make necessary changes, take supplements if you need them, change your attitude, drink herbal teas, use essential oils, and get happy!

(To be continued)

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 

Do You Suffer From Depression? Natural Ways to Deal with Depression

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Natural Alternative Diet, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 19-11-2015

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depression-1

The widespread problem of depression is being talked about practically everywhere these days. Oprah is always talking about it, and so is Dr. Phil and others. There are literally hundreds and thousands of self help books out there on the market today based on peoples’ struggles with depression. Statistics show that around one million people commit suicide worldwide every single year, thousands (if not millions) more who tried but didn’t succeed, and many, many thousands, or probably millions, who are thinking about it or have thought about it. Most of those people began their quest for death with depression. In fact there are almost 20 million people a year, in the USA alone, with depressive disorders. Now THAT is scary!!! So, the big question is what can we do about it? The answer to that is A LOT! We can actually do a lot, and if you are someone who suffers from depression, then read on, because you are going to learn tools that can help you get over and out of your slump and back into life.

Let’s face it. Life is sometimes hard, and it isn’t going to get any better unless we take a different viewpoint. We have to begin looking at the glass as “half full” instead of “half empty”, or another famous saying that really sums it all up is, “When life gives you a lemon, make lemonade”. Looking on the bright side may seem like an effort in the beginning, but it will become easier and easier as time goes on and soon you will be able to do it automatically without even thinking about it. It’s all just basically mind over matter.

depression cure book

Before we get into the mental aspects of the problem, let’s look first at the physical aspects. The first thing that you have to do is take an inventory of your diet. This is imperative, because no matter how much mental work you do, if your diet is a contributing factor in the problem, then you won’t feel completely better. Do an honest food diary for several days and analyze what you are eating. The ideal would be to have plenty of fresh vegetables, fresh healthy proteins, and a small amount of fresh fruit and whole grains. Keep away from things with artificial colors, flavors, and additives as much as possible. Try to stay away from tea and coffee and other toxins (like tobacco, etc) also. This change alone might be all you need!

Here is a book that will get you started on the proper anti-depression and good health diet that you need…

the primal blueprint

Proper sleep is extremely important, and if everything is right in your body, you will be able to sleep. The only time that will go wrong is when you turn your schedule around, for whatever reason, for example work hours, staying up regularly watching TV, chatting on the Internet, studying late hours, or whatever. The fact is that your body has an internal system of regulation and if something is not going well you have got to do something about it. Otherwise you’ll most likely be in for a host of diseases and other problems. The correct way to do this is to wake up early in the morning and stay up until whenever you go to bed at night (which shouldn’t be too late). The body thrives on the idea that the daylight hours will be your waking hours, and the dark hours should be your sleeping hours. You should also get enough sleep without getting too much, so try to make sure that you sleep at least 6 hours a day, preferably 8. Staying up all night at your friend’s house or sitting in the diwaniyah all night long isn’t good for your health. The bottom line is that your body was created to make sure that you don’t get into negative emotion, so don’t let yourself.

21 day primal

Exercise is a very important activity that you need to get involved in if you are trying to beat depression. Any kind of exercise will do, including walking, swimming, jogging, yoga, martial arts, aerobics, and more. Do what you enjoy, because you need to have an activity that you are going to stick with for the long term, and make sure that you have more than one choice, if possible, so that you don’t get bored.

get your shift together

Jog your funny bone. If you want to stop feeling depressed then you have to laugh. Even laughing when you don’t feel happy, when you feel miserable, when you are totally depressed will have a positive effect on you immediately. Even when you are feeling like a total fake, it is still working, so keep it up anyway. Scientifically it has been discovered that laughing and smiling actually releases some important hormones into the body that help to make us feel better. Also, it’s important to remember that you will feel and be what you think of, so make sure that you always visualize and think of good things. So, remember, if you are suffering from depression, don’t watch sad and depressing movies. Watch comedies only. Watch happy shows, read happy and uplifting stories and news, and try your best to have a positive attitude, even in the face of adversity. You’ll be surprised what a little “mind over matter” action will do for you! Don’t hang around with people who are negative, depressing, or mean. You don’t need to add to your problems, and they will just drag you down with them unless you are extremely careful.

the end of stress book

Try to keep stress to a minimum at all times. If something happens that wasn’t quite what you expected, don’t worry about it. If it’s something that you are capable of changing then great, but if it isn’t, big deal. Just accept the idea that situations and people are different, that not everyone likes the same things that we do, that things happen, and get on with it. There is no benefit whatsoever in whining about things you can’t do anything about. All that does is bring in more and more negativity, which is exactly the opposite of what you are supposed to be doing. You need to think positively, be positive, and put yourself in the best possible state of mind. It’s not that difficult to do, but it takes a little bit of time to get the hang of what is required to do to get there, particularly if it doesn’t come naturally to you. No matter what your life is like, you can always find someone who has more problems than you do, more illnesses than you have, and more stress. So, don’t look up to those who are doing better than you, but always look down at those who don’t have it as good as you. You can always find people who are better off than you, no matter how rich, how happy, or how whatever you are, but looking at people whose situations are worse than yours will help ground you and make you understand how lucky you really are. That alone will make you smile for real.

(to be continued)

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

Quick and Easy Ways to Get Rid of Minor Hearing Problems

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 18-11-2015

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hearing problems

The next time you notice that you are saying “excuse me” or more likely “huh” to your friends too much because you can’t hear what they are saying, think about the idea that whatever you are suffering from might be something to look into and not a figment of your imagination. Don’t ignore it and let it slide, because minor ear problems can easily turn into something serious. Remember, you might have an infection and your ear is close to your brain! You don’t want whatever is bothering you to get in there do you? While an infection is one of the most serious of the possible problems, chances are it’s something much less frightening than that.

Hearing problems are commoner than you think. They can be caused by lots of different things, including loud noises (yes, turn the music down please), injury, infection, and more. Lot’s of people have hearing problems and most of these problems are quite easy to take care of. If you are having trouble hearing and the onset was sudden, then chances are that you have some wax buildup in your ear canal. Also, if you are suffering from itchiness, tinnitus (ringing in your ears), or dizziness, etc, those are also signs that you could possibly have wax buildup in your ears. This is something you can clear up fairly easily most of the time. And you must keep in mind that it is quite normal to have ear wax. If you didn’t have it your ear would end up being one unhealthy place! One of the reasons it is there is to protect your ear from invaders of the bacterial and viral type, to keep out the dirt, and also to act as a water-repellent. It’s just a problem when it is produced in an over abundance, which can sometimes be natural (for some people), and sometimes it is a response to a problem in the ear.

Did you know that those cotton buds that you are so in love with are really not so great after all? You should really be cleaning your outer ears with plain (or perhaps mildly soapy) water (when you bathe or shower), or, at most, a towel or tissue on the outer part of your ear. But, you’re not supposed to be shoving those cotton buds halfway (or all the way) into your ear to coax that earwax out. All that does is poke the wax in deeper and can cause possible problems. Some people have even caused eardrum perforations by using cotton ear buds too vigorously.

One of the problems that can occur in your ear is that the ear wax can get impacted in the ear, and sometimes it goes up against the eardrum and causes further problems. This can happen due to over zealous cleaning with ear buds, or naturally. This is not usually serious but can cause hearing loss, which can often be quite severe. When this happens you need to do something right away. The doctor will normally give you ear drops right away to begin breaking down the earwax. Then, when you go back several days later, they can use a vacuum machine to draw out the excess wax that has built up. If you want to try your own natural solution, there are also several ways you can do it. One of the most interesting and oldest methods is called “candling”. This consists of taking a special cone shaped contraptions (such as reeds, wax cones, candles, etc, and lighting a flame at the outer end, which causes a vacuum to form, it turn pulling out the earwax. Some people claim that this method not only cleans out the ears but also does something for a person’s inner self as well. This method is said to have been used by the ancient Egyptians, and is used by the Native Americans to this day. Some professionals claim that it doesn’t work and can be dangerous, but natural practitioners continue to use it, and swear by it. (If you are going to try this yourself, please do it under the supervision of an expert, and make sure that you do not have perforated ear drums or no ear tubes, because in those cases this method could be detrimental). So, in this case, when in doubt, don’t. Some people use a simple hot water bottle to heat the earwax and allow it to come out on its own. The hot water bottle method is a lot simpler and safer than candling.

lamb hot water bottle

Other people use a wash of hydrogen peroxide (which is a naturally occurring chemical). Apparently all you have to do it pour a small amount of it in your ear and wait. Shortly ear wax and other things will begin to come out. Another method is to use the hydrogen peroxide on a cotton ear bud. That method won’t get rid of serious wax buildup but it will make you feel better.

hydrogen peroxide

An even safer method is to put olive oil in your ear. Olive oil is like a natural antibiotic and it is oily as well. If you want an even stronger remedy, you can also try adding some squeezed garlic juice in with the olive oil before you put it in. After allowing it some time, the wax should begin to soften and will often come out on its own.

cortijo de suerte alta picual extra virgin olive oil

The fact is that some people just produce more earwax than others. Those people have the choice of doing nothing and leaving it, or, if it is bothering them, they can try one of the solutions mentioned above. You can always take preventative measures and use a softening agent (like olive oil) once in a while to make sure that it doesn’t become worse. If your problem is chronic though and bothers you, or if it is accompanied be severe deafness or pain, you should do something right away. Even if you decide to use a natural home style remedy it is better to consult the doctor before doing so, just to rule out any organic ailment like a perforated eardrum, etc. Don’t leave your ear health to chance because once you lose your hearing you may never get it back. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 




Quick and Easy Way to Keep Those Mosquitoes and Bugs at Bay

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 11-11-2015

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Mosquito
The mosquitoes are out in force these days, as are the biting ants, and other annoying insect pests. Some people just never seem to get bitten by them at all, but others just attract them it seems, and are usually covered in annoying itchy bites. So far, for us here in Kuwait, the idea of a mosquito bite, while being unwanted and really uncomfortable, is not something that we need to consider extremely dangerous, but there are places on the earth where they are, such as in places where malaria, yellow fever, encephalitis, etc. are prevalent. Also, West Nile disease is more and more worrying, although we have not had to deal with it in Kuwait so far. So, what can you do if you’re one of those sweet smelling human beings that those mosquitoes and ants want so badly? Plenty!

mosquito essential oil blend

The first plan of action is to prevent those insects from coming around you at all. That is the ideal situation, so that you don’t have to deal with the bites afterward. The most obvious protection is the basic mosquito net. It might be cliché but they are still probably the most effective protection around. The only problem is that you can’t go out with a mosquito net wrapped around you. So, while mosquito nets are great for when you are going to sleep, you would look kind of funny walking around with one draped over your head. The “practical version” of the mosquito net is to simply wear clothing that covers all of your exposed areas. Also, it is important not to wear colors that look too flowery or bright, so the best thing is to wear light and dull earthy colors. Some perfumes and soap fragrances can also attract mosquitoes (and other bugs). The worst time for mosquitoes to bite is during the dark hours (specifically at the exact times of dusk and dawn), although that is not the only time they bite, and they are particularly pleased with dank, stagnant areas, swampy areas, or places where the humidity is high and it is hot. Also, having yellow tinged outdoor lights for places that might have mosquitoes is supposed to help reduce their numbers.

mosquito bracelets

There are practically countless products on the market right now, including some that are really not that safe or healthy. There are several that are safe and hopefully as healthy as chemical formulations would allow without being totally ineffective. There are yet others that are natural and considered totally safe under all circumstances, even pregnancy! Mosquito repellents are what you need to ward off those little rascals. They don’t kill the mosquitoes but they make life so miserable for them that they stop coming around. Citronella is one of the most well known natural items on the market. You can get it in the form of pure essential oil, and also as a blend and in products containing certain quantities of it. Probably the most well known product containing citronella oil is “Skin-So-Soft” from Avon. The great thing is that this product is available right here in Kuwait. Other important mosquito repelling essentials oils that have been included in many name brand marketed products include lemongrass, geranium, cedar, and peppermint.

mosquito sticks

As far as chemical repellents go “Deet” (which is actually N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide or N,N-diemethylbenzamide) is probably the most well-known (or at least one of the most) mosquito repellents around. It is sold practically everywhere too, and comes in several brand names, such as “Off!”, so it’s not difficult to find. These come in many different forms including sprays, wristbands, creams, oils, and more. Just be careful to follow the directions for use, because overusing can result in too much absorption through the skin, which can be toxic. Permethrin is another well known repellent chemical mosquito repellent that is particularly effective on clothing and cloth, and in fact is effective for weeks. If you can’t find one of the types that I have mentioned, then just make certain that whichever type of repellent that you end up using it has been approved by a bona fide, official, and respected health agency. I’m not certain whether any of these are available right now in Kuwait, but even if they aren’t, you should be able to get something similar, if need be.

citronella fire log mosquito repel

Some scientific studies also suggest that if you are prone to being bitten by mosquitoes, taking thiamine (which is vitamin B1) regularly will prevent mosquitoes from bothering you, and this is supposed to be particularly true for those who have serious allergic reactions to the bites.

skin so soft mosquito

But, if it’s already too late and you have already gotten bitten, then relief is easier than you think. There are some great herbs and essential oils out there on the market that you can use to get practically instant relief from mosquito bites. You can use pure lavender or tea tree essential oils directly on the mosquito bites, or you can blend calendula or olive oil (as a base) with several drops of pure lavender, tea tree, peppermint, geranium, German or Roman chamomile, or cypress essential oils. You will get immediate relief from the itching and redness and if the bite is swollen that will improve as well. These essential oils work so well that it is practically miraculous.

lavender mosquito       calendula oil mosquito

There are also several herbs that are great for bug bites, and some of them even grow in your garden. Marjoram, basil, marshmallow leaf, chamomile flowers, calendula flowers, licorice, and aloe (which is widely available in Kuwait) can all be used topically right on the mosquito bite for quick relief, and if you don’t have the herbs fresh, then you can also use dried herbs. You can either soak them in warm water, or brew them into an herbal infusion and then put them on the bites in the form of warm compresses. (These remedies are good for other types of bug bites as well).

calendula 2 mosquito      calendula mosquito

So, if you are one of those people who are prone to getting bitten, you don’t have to worry any more. Even if you can’t prevent the bites, you can get quick relief by using one of these great natural remedies.

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 

Quick and Easy Way to Get Rid of Sinus Congestion Due to Cold, Flu, or Allergies

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 07-11-2015

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sinus problems

Well, here we are again in the middle of the changing of the seasons here in Kuwait. Practically everyone is suffering from sinus and ear problems, allergies, colds, or the flu. They are sniffling, coughing, sneezing, wheezing, and worse! So, what can we do about this difficult time? Plenty!

There are so many alternative methods of dealing with the symptoms that come alongside any of the above-mentioned ailments. Some of the symptoms are:

  • excessive sneezing
  • coughing (either dry or productive, depending on the problem)
  • drippy or clogged nose
  • wheezy or whistling sounds when breathing (coming from the throat or chest area
  • tightness or pain in the chest area
  • feeling of pressure or pain in the forehead, temples, sides of face, cheeks, and       teeth (in the absence of other dental problems)
  • dizziness
  • ear pain with or without popping or whooshing sounds
  • headache concentrated in the frontal area, over the eyes
  • inability to taste or smell

 

The first thing you must do if you are suffering from any of these symptoms or others that may not have been mentioned here is to stop all dairy products immediately. Dairy (like milk, cheese, cream, etc) will cause you to have more phlegm, which you definitely do not want, since you already have a problem with too much phlegm. There are other foods that you would be better off stopping, for example oranges (that includes the juice)(I know, I know, since you were a small child everyone has been telling you to eat more oranges and drink orange juice whenever you were sick because you needed the vitamin C, well just pretend you didn’t hear it from them), onions, most store bought fruit (because they are usually loaded with pesticides and other preservatives that will cause you to become worse), heavy spices, tomato products (again the phlegm problem), and anything else that you have noticed increases your symptoms (you may have an allergy or sensitivity to some other type of food and not even realize it).

eucalyptus essential oil

Once you have reduced the influence of the foods that you are eating you can then move on to do something about your actual symptoms. If you are suffering from migraines, pressure or pain around the head and face, drippy or stuffed nose, or any number of other sinus type symptoms then there are several plans of action that you can take. The more you do of these the better you will feel. Steaming will always make you feel much better and more clear-headed. Just boil some water until it is steaming hot, and prepare some essential oils or fresh (or dried) herbs. The ones that I have found to work best are the camphorous ones, like eucalyptus, sage, thyme, and pine, but there are others that also work, like mint, marjoram, and rosemary. If you can get these in essential oil form great, otherwise, you can buy the fresh or dried herbs in the supermarket, or even better, grow your own. Once the water is hot and steaming, get your large bowl and towel ready, pour the hot water in the bowl, put in a few drops of the oil or a small handful of the herbs and immediately put your face over the steam with the towel over your head to make sure that none of the steam escapes. Breathe as deeply as you can until you can’t smell the oil or herbs anymore or until the steam dissipates. This process can be repeated up to several times a day. If you try this you will love it, because its action is fast and relieving. Steaming is definitely one of the best remedies for this type of problem. You can use essential oils for small infants as well, either with a vaporizer in the bedroom, or by putting a few drops of the essential oil on their pillow case before they sleep.

essential oil vaporizer

You can also have herbal teas. Naturally different teas will have different actions, but all of them will be soothing and warming, which is exactly what you need. The best to have are sage, thyme, marjoram, marshmallow (the plant not the confection), basil, eucalyptus, lavender, rosemary, mint, and the list goes on, but those are the best choices, and since some of them are available in practically every supermarket, it won’t be difficult for you to find them. These are herbs that are good to always keep on hand, just in case, and even the smallest infant can drink these safely (just remember with a small baby to reduce the concentration of the tea by half or more). When you make your tea, boil the water first, and then when the water is in your cup add a scant teaspoon of the herbs (or you can also put a heaping teaspoonful into a thermos), cover it will a saucer and let it steep for at least 10 minutes. The idea is that the water should be tinted but not dark, preferably. The reason that you cover it is because you don’t want the essential oils (which are the most important part of the herb) to escape and evaporate. You can add sugar if you want but you probably won’t feel that you need it since most of the western herbs (American and European) are mild and tasty on their own. You can drink several cups of this type of tea daily until you feel better.

marshmallow herb

Remember, you don’t HAVE to suffer from sinus problems, colds, the flu, etc. All you have to do is take action and do something about it. We tend to get lazy when we aren’t feeling well, and don’t really feel like preparing whatever it is that we need to do to help ourselves, but we find it easy to get up and make a trip to the doctor. So, instead of making trips to the doctor, make that little extra effort in order to cure yourself. Herbs and essential oils are certainly better choices than the usual antibiotics that conventional medical practitioners love to give out. And when you’re not feeling well, it is difficult to get yourself up and out in the first place. Also, don’t forget that if you catch whatever you are suffering from early, when you first feel it coming on, you will be able to prevent it from getting worse and taking hold. You may never have to be ill again! Wouldn’t that be great?!

thyme essential oil

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 

Quick and Easy Way To Get Rid of Muscle Spasms From Exercise

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 30-10-2015

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muscle spasm in leg

Lot’s of people complain of muscles spasms in various parts of their bodies, particularly their legs or lower extremities. Some people say that the problem is worse when they are in bed sleeping (or trying to). The really bad spasms even have their own name. We call them Charlie horses (when they are in our leg muscles), but don’t let that cute name fool you. They hurt like crazy, and some people get them quite often. Some people get muscle spasms in their feet too, which is very painful and makes it difficult to walk or move around, particularly when they come regularly. So, the question is… what is happening inside the body that would cause the muscles to go into a spasm like that? There are several possibilities, with some being commoner than others. Let’s look at these causes and see what we can do to remedy the problem.

Probably the commonest reason of all for muscle cramps is over exercise. Naturally, if you have just done a super workout, don’t be surprised if you feel the burn, as they say. Also, if you have taken up a new sport, it is perfectly normal for the muscles to go into a kind of shock in the beginning, so don’t worry about it. The best thing to do in these cases is to soak in hot salty water. It will help your body to work out the lactic acid buildup/low mineral intake that is causing the cramping feeling. But, don’t worry too much, since this problem is only temporary, and will go in a day or two.

Another of the reasons that people may get muscle spasms in their lower extremities could be dehydration. This is a fairly common cause. Here in Kuwait this is particularly likely since the weather here is hot most of the year and it is easy to forget to drink enough water if you are not careful. While this isn’t usually a very dangerous problem, it can quickly turn into one, so always make sure that you drink enough water. Besides the obvious dangers of getting dehydrated, muscle spasms in your legs and feet are not pleasant and if you can avoid them with a little water, do. This is particularly important in the Holy Month of Ramadan, since you are not able to drink water all day. So, do make sure that you get in enough water at night. If not water, at least some kind of liquids, but water is the first choice.

himalaya salt

Click HERE to get Himalayan Salt from Amazon

Another common reason for muscle spasms is the lack of salt in the body. Now, you don’t have to go out and buy a salt block to lick all day long. Just make sure that you’re eating a balanced diet, and that, if you are suffering from leg or foot cramps, you get a little more salt in with your daily intake of liquids. This problem of salt depletion can also occur with the depletion of calcium and other minerals and vitamins, which upsets the equilibrium in your system and can cause all sorts of other problems as well as the muscle cramps. So, always make sure that you eat a well balanced diet, drink plenty of liquids and, if you need to take a multivitamin with minerals, take one! This is particularly important if you are suffering from some type of acute ailment, such as diarrhea, or vomiting, where it is easier for you to become dehydrated and depleted of these important things. But, if you are well and still complain of muscle cramps, drink more water, eat food with a little more salt, and eat foods with plenty of magnesium (like dark leafy greens, avocados, nuts, seeds (especially pumpkin seeds), fish, bananas, dried beans, lentils, brown rice, and yes! dark chocolate).

organic sprouted pumpkin seeds

Click HERE to buy raw sprouted organic pumpkin seeds from Amazon

Sometimes there is no internal problem perse that is causing your cramps… but there are also external factors that can contribute to the problem. The most common external factor would be the cold. While you wouldn’t necessarily think that in Kuwait this would be a problem (everyone knows that the weather here easily goes up to 50 C in the summer months) yet, it really can be a problem here, even in the summer. This is due to the extensive use of air conditioning. So, if you tend to suffer from cramps in the lower extremities, in the summer be careful from overly cold air conditioners, and in the winter make sure you keep warm and out of the cold desert air. Keeping your muscles warm is a simply way of solving your problem. If you must be in a cold environment, either indoors or out, make sure that you are properly dressed. You might even want to go as far as wearing leg warmers and heavier socks. While this might look slightly unusual in the summer, no one will blink an eye in the winter, and don’t worry about it anyway, since your health is more important. Another good remedy is to soak your legs and feet in hot salty water. This is a great remedy for muscle spasms, and just feels good, even after just walking too much. You can also put hot salt water compresses, which will give you the same effect.

heated calf wrap

Click HERE to get this heated calf wrap from Amazon

It is also very effective to use black pepper and ginger essential oils in a base of organic olive oil (or any other organic oil like almond, etc…. all you have to do is put a few drops of each in the base oil and rub it all over the affected area for practically instant relief.

black pepper essential oil ginger essential oil

And a good old foot bath will do wonders for any type of leg muscle spasm. Use water that is quite hot, as hot as you can stand, but not hot enough to burn you obviously 🙂

leg spa foot and leg bathClick HERE to get this foot and leg spa from Amazon

There are some other possible causes of muscles spasms in the legs and feet, but they are rare and caused by a variety of organic diseases, most of which are less common, so before you run off to the doctor to see what the problem is, consider the possible causes that I have mentioned above. Once you have ruled out all of these possibilities, then a trip to a general doctor or other medical practitioner might be in order. It isn’t a good idea to leave this type of ailment too long, without finding out what the problem is, just in case.

If you or someone you know suffers from muscle spasms (cramps) in the legs or feet, it is usually easy to get rid of. Don’t worry about it too much, but just take action, and don’t leave it. You need to make sure that your health in number one on your list of things to do!

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

Quick and Easy Way to Get Rid of Irritable Bowel Syndrome

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 15-08-2015

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ibs

Irritable Bowel Syndrome isn’t the most pleasant of topics that we ever attempted to broach. But, there are millions of people around the world who suffer daily from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) (also known as spastic colon), thousands of them right here in Kuwait, and something needs to be done to help them.

If you aren’t sure what IBS is, here are some of the possible symptoms:
• bloating or gassiness (sometimes very severe)
• diarrhea
• constipation
(or vacillating between the two for no apparent reason)
• mucus in bowel movement
• abdominal pain (either in one place or radiating)
• cramping (sometimes severe)
• pain in legs, back, sides
• tightness in chest (sometimes it seems like a heart attack)
• nausea
• headaches
• stomachache
(and more)

In reality, IBS is basically a catch-all term for all those symptoms that were mentioned above, when they don’t have any obvious organic reason. After all the normal testing is done, including barium enema, barium drink, scopes (possibly upper and lower), and more, and nothing noteworthy shows up, the label IBS is attached. IBS can be chronic or acute. There are people who suddenly suffer from certain symptoms, and after testing comes up negative on everything, are diagnosed with IBS, and then soon after spontaneously recover. Others suffer for years and even while taking medication, never really feel much better for very long. Treating IBS is also a challenge for conventional medicine, since it is often merely a diagnosis of the process of elimination lacking the presence of organic evidence of anything else, so how do you treat it? Normally it is only the symptoms that are treated, for example the upset stomach, the gas, and the constipation or diarrhea, often with little or no relief.

Alternative medicine takes a bit of a different view when it comes to IBS. I have been successfully treating IBS for years, with an almost 100% success rate. How is that? My view (along with many other alternative practitioners) is that IBS is basically a result of sensitivities or allergies of one sort or the other. These sensitivities (or allergies) manifest themselves in a variety of ways, including sinus problems, skin problems, migraines, and IBS. So, one way to treat IBS is to treat the underlying sensitivity or allergy. While this isn’t a simple task, it isn’t difficult to do, and there are basic rules that seem to apply to most people and work in most cases

The diet is one of the most important areas to look at when dealing with IBS. Dietary changes are often all that is needed to “cure” the problem. In fact, the elimination of high carbohydrate foods is often all that is required. Foods like potatoes, bread, rice, sugary foods, and more are often the problem. For some reason, it seems that many people simply cannot process these foods and thus, suffer with the symptoms of IBS when eating them. If you suffer from IBS try cutting out these things, along with artificial colorings, preservatives, additives, soy (and its byproducts), dairy (and its byproducts), corn (and its byproducts), tomatoes, high citrus fruits, tea, coffee, chocolate, and anything else that causes discomfort when eaten.

Stress also plays an important part in the manifestation and treatment of IBS. So, keeping your stress levels down is always going to help. Now, while I am well aware that in this day and age, keeping stress low is going to be an almost insurmountable task, it can be done, nonetheless. You must do whatever it takes, as your health depends on it. So, if you suffer from this or other stress-related diseases lowering the stress in your life is of utmost importance. This can be done in many ways, including decompressing in a warm bath, taking a leisurely walk, reading a good book, relaxing with good friends, meditating, playing your favorite sport, going horseback riding, painting, or whatever it is that you like to do. Don’t keep on saying, “later”, because later will never come.

reflexology tutor

Click HERE to buy this book from Amazon.

There are many alternative therapies that have been found to have good results for IBS, including: reflexology, aromatherapy, Chinese acupressure (and acupuncture), hypnotherapy, ayurveda, yoga, and more. These can be used together or individually, and are often so effective that they can even completely cure the problem.

In our herbal pharmacy, we have many choices, and most of them can be found right in our own kitchens! Herbs like peppermint, fennel seed, anise seed, chamomile, thyme, sage, ginger, rosemary, and marjoram, to name a few. Some other herbs that, while they probably aren’t going to be available in your own pantry, are widely available in the herbal marketplace worldwide are: marshmallow leaf, slippery elm, psyllium husks, ginseng, evening primrose, golden seal, Echinacea, and more.

Here are some good choices for herbal remedies that you can do easily at home:

marshmallow herb

Click HERE to buy marshmallow leaf herb from Amazon.

slippery elm

Click HERE to buy Slippery Elm Bark from Amazon.

psyllium husks

Click HERE to buy Organic Psyllium Husks from Amazon.

kefir starter

Click HERE to buy Kefir Starter from Amazon.

Clearly IBS is a miserable problem that no one wants to suffer from. It is painful and embarrassing. So, for those who suffer, a solution is extremely important. The solution that you look for is right here in the world of alternatives, and right there in your own kitchen!

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

This article first appeared in the Arab Times newspaper in Kuwait in July 200.

Quick and Easy Way To Get Rid of Tinnitus

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 11-08-2015

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tinnitus

There are many people who suffer horribly from tinnitus or similar diseases. If you haven’t heard of it, don’t feel bad. You’re not alone. There are many more where that came from, you’re in good company. The fact is that just because you haven’t heard of it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist. Indeed it does, and if you aren’t sure, just ask one of the thousands, even millions of people around the world who suffer from tinnitus on a daily basis. In fact there are almost 36 million sufferers in the USA alone!

Tinnitus can be described as a ringing in one’s ears. Some people report hearing other sounds as well, such as popping, whistling, pulsing, screeching, whooshing, buzzing and worse, and that din is going on right inside of your head. Some people even report being able to hear music! Normally, the sufferer is the only one who can hear the sounds, but in a very few people, the noises can even be heard from the outside. The problem can be in one or both ears, and can be very debilitating for some. In certain cases the tinnitus comes and goes and isn’t present all the time. In other cases the tinnitus is there constantly and never goes away. Some sufferers report that the only relief for them from the noise is sleep. Some others don’t even get relief when they sleep! For some people the problem is minor and bearable, but for others, the problem is not as bearable, and in some extreme cases people have even committed suicide because they couldn’t take the noise any more. It literally drove them to death. Now, while the cases of very severe tinnitus are rare, they do happen, and even the simple cases where the tinnitus is mild are cases where the people would do practically anything to get rid of it. The problem is that it’s sometimes not that easy to do.

Tinnitus can have many causes, including sinus problems (like sinusitis, infection, allergy, etc), ear inflammation or infection, various ear defects (like damage to the nerve endings of the ear), exposure to loud noises (this is particularly a problem of young people who go to rock concerts and can even result in permanent hearing loss, so if you know a teenager who listens to his stereo at high decibels (too loudly), stop him immediately, before it’s too late), ear wax build up, high or low blood pressure, diabetes, tension or stress (anxiety), vitamin deficiencies, jaw problems, eye or optical nerve problems, certain medications, neck and head injuries, brainstem or brain injuries, and worse of all tumors (but those are extremely rare). Elderly people tend to suffer more than others.

Once you find out the cause of your particular tinnitus, then you can work on doing something about it. While there isn’t a lot of success in treating it with medications, certain therapies have been found useful and effective for many. For example, if your problem is sinus related, then you can take antihistamines (or other anti-allergy medications). While there are other medications that have been known to be effective as well, most medications aren’t very effective and chemical medicaments are not ideal in any case. In some rare cases surgery is performed, but it isn’t always effective either.

The advice that most doctors give sufferers is to avoid loud noises, get plenty of rest, and eat good wholesome foods (since there is evidence showing that dietary changes and eating certain chemicals and additives can even cause tinnitus). Get plenty of exercise too, because an increase of beneficial activity has also been found quite effective. If you smoke or drink a lot of caffeine or diet drinks, stop!

complete reflexology book

Click HERE to buy this book from Amazon

There are some alternative choices to try when it comes to treating tinnitus. Some are reported more effective than others, but when you are suffering from an illness that is as annoying as this one is, you will generally be willing to try almost anything. Reflexology has been noted to be quite effective against many kinds of tinnitus, even the worst kinds. It appears to affect the workings of the ear and the symptoms that caused it in the first place. Along the same lines acupressure and acupuncture have been noteworthy as well.

Organic Gingko

Click HERE to buy Starwest Organic Gingko Herb from Amazon

Some people have found that taking the herb Gingko biloba is effective, and also vitamins, such as Vitamin A, the B vitamins, folic acid, or Zinc.

Here are some good vitamin choices from Amazon…

 

While tinnitus is a real disease, and affects people physically, hypnosis can be of help in many cases. While it isn’t completely understood why this therapy works, it does, and thus cannot be overlooked when dealing with such a stubborn problem.

Yes, tinnitus is a big problem for those who suffer from it, but there are ways to help it, and hopefully more on the way!

Email me: mia@yournaturalhealtonline.com

This article originally appeared in the Arab Times Newspaper in Kuwait in June 2006




Cure Quick and Easy Way To Cure Almost Any Eye Inflammation with Black Tea!

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 08-08-2015

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When I say black tea is a cure, I’m not joking.

It works for humans, horses, cats, dogs, and probably any other animal with eyes that you can hold down long enough to put the tea in!

Black tea is fantastic for any type of inflammation at all.

It is much stronger than any antibiotic that the doctor can give you!

(Of course they don’t want you to know that, do they though!).

Black tea is great for full blown infections, too.

Even if the infections are viral, and just as good for bacterial.

Even if you are suffering from eye allergies, black tea is just what the doctor ordered.

People who suffer from dry eyes and have to put natural saline eye drops all the time (artificial tears) should try black tea to solve their problem.

Black tea works just as well or better.

Black tea is just a miracle eye cure, no matter how you look at it!

Mighty Leaf Tea

Mighty Leaf Tea, Organic Breakfast, Whole Leaf Pouches, 1.32-Ounces, 15-Count (Pack of 3)