5 Natural Remedies For Common Ailments
A few years ago, many of us would take acetaminophen for headaches and pop an antacid after a spicy meal. Today, we’re turning to homeopathic and herbal remedies to cure our common health issues instead. From headaches to insomnia, try these drug-free treatments to get better fast.
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#1 Nausea: Ginger
Ginger, a flavorful root used in many different cuisines, is often marketed as a natural way to reduce nausea, but don’t be fooled by ads from brands of ginger ale—you need real ginger to alleviate nausea and vomiting. Get raw ginger from your local grocery store and use it in cooking, drink it in tea or eat the candied form, which you can eat as you would mints.
How it works: It’s unclear exactly how ginger works to ease nausea, but it’s thought that active components such as gingerol directly affect the digestive and central nervous systems.
#2 Acne: Tea tree oil
We’re all plagued by whiteheads, blackheads or pimples every now and then. The good news is you don’t have to throw expensive products on it or wait a week until it disappears—all you need is tea tree oil. To get rid of acne, mix two drops of tea tree oil with 12 drops of carrier oil, such as olive oil, coconut oil or almond oil. Alternatively, you can mix five or six drops of tea tree oil into a facial moisturizer and apply it to your entire face.
How it works: Tea tree oil is known to have antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce the inflammation associated with acne.
#3 Headache: Peppermint oil
Peppermint has been used in alternative medicine for thousands of years. Today, it’s one of the most popular essential oils to treat headaches and migraines. If you have a pounding headache you just can’t seem to get rid of, try applying diluted peppermint oil directly to the temples to help relieve pain. You can also add a few drops to your bath, diffuse it into the air or inhale peppermint oil with steam by pouring hot water into a bowl and adding three to seven drops of essential oil.
How it works: Peppermint oil contains menthol, which can help muscles relax and ease pain.
#4 Insomnia: Lavender
Studies show that lavender oil can help improve sleep quality. This popular aromatherapy choice for sleep and relaxation can be found in most health and department stores. To help you sleep, leave a little bottle of lavender oil on your night table or diffuse it into the air before you go to bed. You can also find lavender spray for your pillow.
How it works: Research shows lavender increases drowsiness, slows your heart rate, lowers your blood pressure and promotes calming.
#5 Sore throat: Honey or saltwater
Your mom probably made you gargle saltwater when you felt a sore throat coming on (combine 1/4 teaspoon of table salt with 4 ounces of warm water for this natural remedy), but did you know that honey can give you the same result (with a much more pleasant taste)? To bring relief to your sore throat, simply mix two tablespoons of honey with warm water and drink like tea. Alternatively, swallow a tablespoon of honey to feel instant relief. This also works with tough-to-get-rid-of coughs.
How it works: The honey breaks up mucus and helps relieve the discomfort.