Healing herbs | Age old remedies

Herbal medicine is the most ancient form of healthcare in the world.  It often takes the form of some harvested loveliness from the garden or strong-smelling tonic combining various food types. But did you know that up to a quarter of all modern prescription drugs are derived from plants?

Modern plant derived drugs like Aspirin have been used for centuries. Aspirin uses salicyclic acid, which is found in jasmine, beans, peas and clover. Who would’ve thought it was derived naturally? 

However, natural derivatives in modern medicine are only part of the herb story. Herbal treatments are centuries old. They remain popular as they take the outlook that the individual is healed by stimulating the body’s natural healing powers. They are also readily available in your garden or kitchen.

Common herb examples include chamomile, garlic, ginger, aloe vera, sage, lavender and lemon balm. These very common herbs can help with anything from gastrointestinal complaints to respiratory problems, skin irritations and sunburn. More information on the healing properties of different herbs is available online. Try and

While herbs are generally safe and well tolerated, its important to do your research and consider how they may combine with prescription drugs. Consulting your doctor is recommended.

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The healing properties of herbs can be used in a variety of ways:

  • Compress: mostly used for skin complaints and involving cloth and water
  • Decoction: herbs simmered or boiled in water
  • Extract: dried or powdered herbs
  • Infusion: teas using herbs
  • Healing oil: herbs infused in hot or cold oils
  • Tincture: herbs soaked in alcohol or water and applied to infected wound or skin
  • Ointment/cream: combination of herbs, oils, fats and water
  • Poultice: mixture of fresh, dried or powdered herbs 

To get started try this Calendular Salve for a delightful herbal skin treatment. It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that make it useful in healing wounds, soothing eczema and relieving nappy rash. It may also be used as an antiseptic. Read on to start creating your home apothecary now. 


Get herbed up with these eBooks:

Borrow up to 30 eBooks on your device. To get started download the ePlatform by Wheelers and Libby apps. Select Sunshine Coast Libraries and enter your member number and password. Need help setting up your device for eBooks? Watch this video tutorial.


Libraries love these natural healing eAudiobooks:

  • Yang Sheng by Katie Brindle 
  • Gut well soon: a practical guide to a healthier body and a happier mind by Catherine Rogers
  • Sleep by Lisa Varadi 

Borrow up to 30 eBooks on your device. To get started, download the BorrowBox and Libby apps, select Sunshine Coast Libraries and enter your member number and password. Need help setting up your device for eAudiobooks? Watch this video tutorial


Try these herb healthy eMagazines:

  • ABC Organic Gardener
  • The Art of Healing 
  • Natural Health 
  • Earth Garden
  • Wellbeing 

Get started using free eMagazines online or download the Libby app. Select Sunshine Coast Libraries and enter your member number and password.  


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On the web

9 herbs you can grow in water over and over

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