Why Medicinal Herbs?
The Ancients of many cultures used the innate power of medicinal herbs to heal their bodies, purify their spirits, achieve balance, and enhance their connection to nature. Eating them in copious amounts, these herbal remedies became the foundation of health care in ancient times, and even continue to inspire today’s modern western medicine. While modern medicine, also known as allopathic medicine, does not necessarily embrace its natural roots, the majority of pharmaceuticals and over-the-counter medicines are actually derived from, or inspired by, healing herbs and other healing plants. Take White Willow Bark, for example, which in Hippocrates’ time was chewed to relieve pain and inflammation. In modern times, the Bark’s active compound salicylic acid is the ingredient that inspired common over-the-counter pain relievers such as Aspirin.
Are healing herbs just folk medicine?
Herbal remedies and natural medicine are not new, yet in our modern culture, they are often defaulted into the category of “folk medicine” or “bush medicine”- even passed off as “quackery”. But as anyone who has experienced the healing power of these herbs can attest to, their natural derivation should not bely their legitimacy. Medicinal healing herbs are special herbal plants that have powerful healing properties. They are Earth’s gift, vital for our health and prosperity. And now, we at Medicinal Foods are honored to be sharing our Healing Medicinal Herb Tonics with you. Many medicinal herbs are also adaptogenic, meaning they help the body resist stress, as well as help build strength and vitality.
Healing Plant Power Passed to Our Bodies
Plants have their own resistance to stress and disease and when we consume those plants, their strength passes onto us, enhancing our own immune system. Just as a Reishi Mushroom has a one cell thick wall that is an impenetrable barrier of protection in a forest full of pathogens, this feature of their immune system passes onto us when we eat them. Hence, plants provide more than just nutrients, many are healing plants that provide important medicine for our bodies to heal.
Medicinal Herbs in Traditional Chinese Medicine: The “Candle Metaphor”
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, all of our health issues are caused by imbalances, excesses, and deficiencies. In this light, optimal health is only achieved when the body’s three treasures, or the “essential energies sustaining human life”, are in balance. The Three Treasures are: Jing, Chi and Shen.
Jing Herbs support your “Candle and Wick”
Jing relates to the kidneys, and is believed to be inherited from parents. Jing, like DNA, is your essence you came into this life with. Like the wax of a candle, if you burn the candle at both ends, your life expectancy drops twice as fast. When the candle is gone, so is your life. Think of Jing as the mitochondria powerhouse of your cells. For women, childbirth can be a major Jing leak. For men, semen retention is a way to prevent Jing leakage. Jing can be rebuilt with medicinal herbs like Cordyceps Mushrooms.
Chi Herbs support your “Candle Flame”
Chi, or “Qi”, is the vitality or energy that relates to the spleen, and is likened to the flame of the candle. “Heaven Chi” enters through our breath and penetrates the 12 meridians (or energy pathways in the body). Tonifying the spleen can help with the breakdown of our food into energy. Chi is like the ATP, or energy that is produced by the mitochondria in the Krebs cycle. If the Chi isn’t there to provide the fire to break down the food and supply the minerals to build the blood, then the Jing begins to become depleted. Yang is the release of energy from organs. Chi tonics are also known as adaptogens and are the rasayana or “restorative” tonics of Ayurvedic medicine.
Shen Herbs support your “Candlelight”
Shen, or Spirit, or Mind, is like the aura or light that comes off the flame of the candle. Taoist and Zen masters consumed Shen producing medicinal herbs for use on their spiritual paths. The Ancients used different combinations of medicinal herbs to maintain the balance of the Three Treasures. In Traditional Chinese Medicine only 70 of a total of about 30,000 herbal plants are considered to actually be medicinal herbs.
These highly revered herbs were believed to help tonify where there is deficiency and bring “life” back into our organs, building vitality, energy and resistance. The ancient Chinese believed when an organ becomes deficient in Chi, the energy or life force of the organ needs to be tonified. Five-thousand years of Ancient Wisdom can’t be wrong; medicinal herbs have anti-aging properties and aid the attainment of longevity; have broad-spectrum health-promoting benefits; and improve spiritual and emotional well-being. What’s more, most of them have no negative side effects and are easily digestible and assimilable.
Superior Medicinal Herbs
Due to their near perfect composition, there are some medicinal herbs considered Superior Herbs, or, revered as Quintessential Substances, which cultivate all three treasures and regulate all 12 organ systems. These Superior Herbs were termed Immortal Foods as distinguished in the Divine Farmer’s “Materia Medica” and the Yellow Emperor’s, “Classic of Medicine” by the legendary Qi Bo. “In ancient times the art of herbology was practiced by categorizing all herbs into three classifications. The first category of herbs was called superior, or immortal foods because of their lack of side effects and strengthening qualities.” These Superior Herbs, such as Schizandra and Reishi Mushrooms, were considered superfoods to the ancient people, and can now be incorporated as food in the diet to enhance health, vitality, and especially for Taoist and Zen masters, spirituality. Because of the power of these healing herbs, we should all consider incorporating them into our diets for better health and longevity.
Most of all, we at Medicinal Foods are excited and honored to make these amazing adaptogenic, medicinal herbs available to you again. May these formulas of healing herbs help you resist stress and bring vitality, health, and balance to your lives. I promise, it’s not too good to be true. In bringing you the ancient future of tonic herbalism, I consulted with many tonic herbalists, acupuncturists and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practitioners to distill a few very powerful, yet safe tonic formulas. Medicinal Foods Tonic herbal formulas contain ancient wisdom in a powdered herbal form. You can mix it in with your Cacao Elixir, Tea base or even sprinkle on your food. The recommended dosage is 1-2 Tablespoons per serving, which is more effective and closer to what the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) protocol is, rather than taking a handful of tablets or capsules. Think grams, not milligrams when dealing with these herbs.
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