For years, sisters Joan Wilen and Lydia Wilen have been collecting and incredible home remedies. These range from old treatments that have been passed down for centuries (but forgotten by modern medicine) to methods recently uncovered by doctors and medical researchers. Healing Remedies combines the best entries from the Wilens’ Chicken Soup & Other Folk Remedies books, plus a significant amount of new material, including sections on diabetes, osteoporosis, ADD, anxiety, and children’s common ailments–from colic and diaper rash to tantrums and teething. Also, check out these other remarkable remedies:
• Eating two pectin-packed apples a day may help lower blood pressure.
• For an energy boost, slap the inside of your elbows and the back of your knees.
• Eating one-half avocado a day may lower cholesterol by up to 42 percent.
• Vaporize a headache by bringing a cup of apple cider vinegar to a slow boil, then put a towel over your head, bend over the pot at a safe distance, and inhale/exhale through your nose for about 10 minutes.
• To tone up your circulatory system and strengthen your heart, pretend to vigorously conduct an orchestra for 10 minutes a day.
• To improve your memory, pop six raw almonds a day.
• Add pizzazz to your sex life by consuming any fruit beginning with p: peaches, plums, pears, pineapple, papaya, and persimmon.
• Practice “girth control” by killing your cravings with pure grape juice.
Though not meant as a substitute for doctor’s visits, this amazing guide also features special sections on men’s health challenges, especially prostate concerns, and women’s symptom relief, from cramps and morning sickness to vaginitis and hot flashes. Remedies galore–and more–are at your fingertips!
|Publisher:||Random House Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||7.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)|
About the Author
Joan Wilen is a health investigator and author, well known for her books, media tours, and frequent appearances on national and local television shows with her sister, Lydia Wilen. They have appeared on the Today show, CBS This Morning, and Good Day New York, and have been guests on hundreds of radio shows. Wilen lives in New York City.
Read an Excerpt
Throughout the book, we refer you to this Preparation Guide when a remedy calls for using ingredients in a way in which you probably haven't used them.
The information and simple instructions included here should take out the guesswork and replace it with answers to all of your questions with regard to processing specific ingredients.
Hippocrates, the father of medicine, felt that everyone should drink barley water daily to maintain good health. Barley is rich in iron and B vitamins. It is said to help prevent tooth decay and hair loss, improve fingernails and toenails, and help heal ulcers, diarrhea, and bronchial spasms. Pearl or pearled (also called Scotch) barley has been milled. During the milling process, the inedible hull and some of the bran layer are removed, which takes away some of the nutrients. Hulled barley (most often referred to as just “barley”), with only the outer, inedible hull removed, is more nutritious. It is also rich in dietary fiber and has more iron, more trace minerals, and four times the thiamine (vitamin B1) of pearl barley. Packages of pearl barley and (hulled) barley are sold at supermarkets; packaged and loose pearl barley and (hulled) barley are sold at most health food stores.
Boil 2 ounces of either pearl or hulled barley in 6 cups water until there's about half the water—3 cups—left in the pot. Strain. If you find it hard to drink, add honey and lemon to taste.
Of course you can eat the barley. If it is not soft enough to eat, add just-boiled water and continue cooking it until it's the degree of softness you prefer.
Beans! They're so good for you. If only …
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is said to have come up with the following way to prepare beans, which should reduce the gas-producing (indigestible) sugars by about 80 percent, without sacrificing the nutrients.
Fill a pot that will easily hold three to four times the amount of beans you want to cook three-quarters full of water. Bring it to a rolling boil. Meanwhile, go through the dry beans, cleaning out the pebbles and empty bean shells, and wash the beans. Once the pot of water boils, add the beans and let it continue boiling for two minutes. Remove from the heat, cover, and let it stand for one hour. Drain and discard the water. Now use your regular recipe to cook the beans, adding fresh water or broth.
If that doesn't do it for you, there's another way to de-gas beans. Soak dry beans overnight in a pot of water along with ⅛ to ¼ cup apple cider vinegar. The next morning, thoroughly rinse the beans, put fresh water and 1 or 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar into the pot, and cook the beans as usual. Good luck!
You'll need an eye cup (available at drugstores). Carefully pour just-boiled water over the cup to clean it. Then, without contaminating the rim or inside surfaces of the cup, fill it half full with whichever eyewash you've selected. Apply the cup tightly to the eye to prevent spillage, then tilt your head backward. Open your eyelid wide and rotate your eyeball to thoroughly wash the eye. Use the same procedure with the other eye, starting with pouring just-boiled water over the cup to clean it and prevent cross contamination.
When a remedy calls for garlic juice, peel a few cloves of garlic, mince them finely onto a piece of cheesecloth, then squeeze the juice out of the pieces. Chances are a garlic press would make the job easier.
Peel or scrub a nub of fresh ginger and cut it into 3 to 5 quarter-size pieces. Pour just-boiled water over it, let it steep for 5 to 10 minutes, strain, and enjoy. If you want stronger ginger tea, grate a piece of ginger, then steep it in just-boiled water, strain, and drink. We keep a piece of ginger in the freezer at all times. It makes it much easier to grate and doesn't affect its healthful qualities.
Besides offering a good, relaxing time, an herbal bath can be extremely healing. The volatile oils of the herbs are activated by the heat of the water, which also opens your pores, allowing for absorption of the herbs. As you enjoy the bath, you're inhaling the herbs (aromatherapy), which pass through the nervous system to the brain, benefiting mind, body and soul.
Simply take a handful of one or a combination of dried or fresh herbs and place them in the center of a white handkerchief. Secure the herbs in the handkerchief by turning it into a little knapsack or closing it with a twist-tie. Toss the herb-filled bundle into the tub and let the hot water fill the tub until it reaches the level you want. When the water cools enough for you to sit comfortably, do so.
After your bath, open the handkerchief and spread the herbs out to dry You can use them a couple of times more.
Instead of using dried or fresh herbs, you can use herbal essential oils (available at health food stores). Follow the instructions on the bottle.
Place a teaspoon of the herb, or an herbal tea bag, in a glass or ceramic cup and pour just-boiled water over it. (The average water-to-herb ratio is 6 to 8 ounces of water to 1 round teaspoon of herb. There are exceptions, so be sure to read the directions on the herbal tea package.)
According to many herbalists, never use water that has been reboiled. The first boiling releases oxygen dissolved in the water, and so the second boiling results in flat and lifeless tea.
Cover the cup and let the tea steep for the amount of time suggested in a specific remedy or on the tea package. The general rule of thumb is to steep about 3 minutes for flowers and soft leaves, about 5 minutes for average seeds and tougher leaves, and about 10 minutes for hard seeds, roots, and barks. Of course, the longer the tea steeps, the stronger it gets.
Strain the tea or remove the tea bag. If you need to sweeten it, use honey (preferably raw) or stevia; never use sugar, because it is said to negate the value of most herbs. When the tea is comfortably cool, drink it slowly.
The onion is in the same plant family as garlic and is almost as versatile. The ancient Egyptians looked at the onion as the symbol of the universe. It has been regarded as a universal healing food, used to treat earaches, colds, fever, wounds, diarrhea, insomnia, and warts, among other ailments. It is believed that a cut onion in a sickroom disinfects the air, as it absorbs the germs in that room. Half an onion will help absorb the smell of a just-painted room. With that in mind, you may not want to use a cut piece of onion that has been in the kitchen for more than a day unless it was in plastic wrap and refrigerated.
When a remedy calls for onion juice, grate an onion, put the gratings on a piece of cheesecloth, and squeeze out the juice into a glass bowl.
PESTICIDE REMOVAL FOR FRUITS AND VEGETABLES
Jay “the Juiceman” Kordich shared his method of removing poisonous sprays and pesticides from produce. Fill the sink with cold water, add 4 tablespoons of salt, and squeeze in the juice of half a lemon. This makes a very diluted form of hydrochloric acid.
Soak most fruits and vegetables 5 to 10 minutes; soak leafy greens 2 to 3 minutes; soak strawberries, blueberries, and all other berries 1 to 2 minutes. After soaking, rinse thoroughly with plain cold water and enjoy
An alternative to the Juiceman's method is to soak produce in a sink or basin with ¼ cup distilled white vinegar. Then, with a vegetable brush, scrub the produce under cold water. Give them a final rinse, and they're ready to be eaten.
Raw, peeled, boiled, grated, and mashed potatoes; potato water; and potato poultices all help heal, according to American, English, and Irish folk medicine. In fact, a popular nineteenth-century Irish saying was, “Only two things in this world are too serious to be jested on: potatoes and matrimony.”
Do not use potatoes that have a green tinge. The greenish coloring is a warning that there may be a high concentration of solanine, a toxic alkaloid that can affect nerve impulses and cause vomiting, cramps, and diarrhea. The same goes for potatoes that have started to sprout. They're a no-no.
The skin or peel of the potato is richer in fiber, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin C, and B vitamins than the inside of the potato. Always leave the skin on when preparing potato water, but scrub it well.
Scrub two medium-size potatoes (use organic red potatoes whenever possible) and cut them in half. Put the 4 halves in a pot with four cups of water (filtered, spring, or distilled, if possible) and bring to a boil. Lower the flame a little and let it cook for 30 minutes. Take out the potatoes (eating them is optional) and save the water. Drink 1 or 2 cups of potato water— whatever the remedy calls for—and refrigerate the leftover water for next time.