3 Medicinal Fall Flower Suggestions For Breast Cancer

This fall use Echinacea, Lavender and Sage for your medicinal infusions to relieve anxiety and tension. These three medicinal garden flower suggestions are tailored to breast cancer health concerns. Our hope is that the information below inspires you, as jumping board of sorts, in creating your own unique dream medicinal healing garden. Each plant was picked based on its ease of cultivation and medicinal usefulness and versatility.

Echinacea
Purple coneflower is one of the most popular garden ornamentals with its showy purple flowers that attract all manner of butterflies and bees. Not only is it gorgeous, it is easy to grow—Echinacea is a decidedly unfussy plant, withstanding drought, disease and insect infestations. Purple coneflower (another name for Echinacea) roots, seeds, and fresh flowers are all medicinal, and can be made into a tingly tasting, immune-stimulating tea or tincture.

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Lavender
Lavender aromatherapy to help reduce stress, anxiety, insomnia and mild depression. It is often referred to as a mood balancing herb that possesses a sedative and calming effect. It can also have an uplifting, refreshing and rejuvenating effect on the psyche.

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Sage
Growing the medicinal herb sage can be fun and emotionally therapeutic. Learn how to grow, harvest and dry sage as a breast cancer gardening therapy. Another therapeutic benefit of sage is smudging. Sage smudging is a powerful cleansing technique from the Native American tradition in which herbs are burned for emotional, psychic and spiritual purification.

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Dawn Breast CancerAbout Dawn Bradford Lange:  Co-founder of Breast Cancer Yoga. Dawn is making a difference with Breast Cancer Yoga therapeutic products designed to support you emotionally and physically during breast cancer . We want to give you the attention and personal service you need so please email us at info@breastcanceryoga.com if you have questions.

Breast Cancer: A-Z Mindful Practices: Self Care Tools For Treatment & Recovery

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Echinacea: A Medicinal Flower For Your Breast Cancer Garden

By Breast Cancer Yoga Staff.

You will want to consider planting Echinacea as a valuable and beautiful flower in your breast cancer healing garden. Echinacea Purpurea…aka “Purple Coneflower”  has been involved in herbal medicine and enjoyed for it’s bold purple blooms for decades. Let’s look at three reasons why you will want to consider planting this valuable and beautiful flower.

1. Echinacea Attracts Butterflies and Pollinating Insects

This flower is covered with pollinators when in full bloom.  And it’s no wonder why either when you look at the giant cone center with the drooping petals which provides an easy resting spot for butterflies and lots of nectar and pollen for insects. If you leave the seed heads of the flowers alone in the fall, you’ll also attract goldfinches which love their seeds.  This flower is one of the best plants to bring nature right into your own backyard.

2.  Echinacea Easy-Care and Drought Resistant Perennial

That’s right; very easy to plant and take care of.  Once sown, either by seed or by plants, echinacea will establish itself very easily.  A native to Texas and out west, it’s used to living on less than ideal water which means this plant is tough. Echinacea likes fertile, well-drained soil in a sunny location.  With rich soil, it should grow about 3-4 feet high and produce flowers 4-6 inches across and it makes a nice addition to the back of your flower or herb bed.

3.  Echinacea is an Immune System Builder

Native Americans long valued this plant for it’s immune system medicinal properties and should be in every established herb or flower garden. Even though echinacea augustifolia is the more well-known medicinal flower of the two varieties, purpurea is easier to grow and much hardier.  Typically the roots are used in herbal preparations of tinctures,  and teas, but the leaves and flowers have some medicinal value as well, especially in teas.  If you don’t want to sacrifice your plant by digging up the roots harvest the topmost leaves and newest flowers for your tea blend.

Using this medicinal herbal flower will help you in your breast cancer recovery.  You can grow plants and harvest your own roots, or you can order them online to make your own teas or tinctures.  At least I have the plant available if I did need the roots for stronger medicine.  You typically want to harvest roots from 3 year old plants and during the fall once they are done flowering.

Hopefully after reading this, you’ll understand the immense value of this versatile and wonderful plant.   So, if you haven’t planted one yet, now is the perfect time.

Learn More:

1. Learn More About Growing Echinacea

2. How To Dry Echinacea For Tea

3. What To Do With Echinacea

Dawn Breast Cancer

About Dawn Bradford Lange:  Co-founder of Breast Cancer Yoga. Dawn is making a difference with Breast Cancer Yoga therapeutic products designed to support you emotionally and physically during breast cancer . We want to give you the attention and personal service you need so please email us at info@breastcanceryoga.com if you have questions.

What Are Allergies: Why Are They Common!

By Ellen Kamhi, PhD, RN, HNC, AHG
The Natural Nurse®, http://www.naturalnurse.com

When a person with an allergy to foods or environmental factors encounters an offending substance, the immune system interprets it as the enemy. To help ward off the intruder, the human body activates antibodies, and releases a substance called ‘histamines’. Allergies are abnormal reactions to everyday substances such as pollen, dust, dander, house dust, mold or common foods. Allergy medications are referred to ‘anti-histamines’ because they attempt to turn off this natural, although over zealous, body reaction. The immune system readies for battle with a vengeance, and attacks the offending substance, along with other body tissues, imposing an uncomfortable variety of symptoms on the allergy sufferer. These can range from annoying but bearable conditions–such as rashes, scratchy throats and toothaches– to more frightening reactions like a closed throat and difficulty breathing. Frequent bouts of bronchitis, asthma and severe eczema, conditions that can be physically and emotionally painful—are all the more common in allergic individuals.

In rare cases, food allergies can even be deadly. For example, some people are so severely allergic to peanuts that even a teaspoon of peanut butter can cause them to go into anaphylactic shock, a severe allergic reaction that can be life threatening. They must constantly carry epinephrine to counter these ever-present dangerous effects- in this case herbs and natural remedies are not enough!

The most common food allergies include dairy products, nuts, wheat, yeast, eggs, soybeans, shellfish, and tomatoes. Some foods can cause an allergic reaction as soon as you take a bite, while others can take hours or even days to elicit an allergic response. Immediate food allergies are moderated by a group of immunoglobulins in the body, referred to as IGE, while the delayed allergies are related to a different immunoglobulin called IGG. Conventional allergy screening often looks for IGE mediated allergies, while ignoring IGG based allergies.

No one understands exactly why certain people are allergic. The propensity to develop allergies can run in families and may be inherited to some extent. Many people who suffer from food allergies, are also more prone to other types of allergies such as sensitivities to pollen and chemicals. Especially during spring and fall pollen seasons, allergens can be blown onto melons and other food crops. “Cross-reactivity” for pollen sensitive individuals is also common with avocados, bananas, kiwi, papaya and chestnuts.  Interestingly, babies who are breast-fed are less likely to develop allergies than their formula-fed peers.

If you have any type of allergy carefully scrutinize the labels of any substance you ingest.  Even supplements may contain allergens that you are unaware of. For example, if you are allergic to shellfish, then you should probably think twice before taking an oyster shell calcium supplement, or Glucosamine/Chondroitin , usually made from the exoskeletons of shellfish. If you are allergic to pollen avoid bee pollen supplements such as royal jelly and honey. On the other hand, honey made from the exact flower pollen that a person has a sensitivity to, can sometimes help the allergy by de-sensitizing the immune system.

Dyes, preservatives and other chemicals found in abundance in both the Standard American Diet, as well as the environment can increase allergy symptoms.  If you eat preserved or non-organic items and are experiencing an allergic reaction, consider switching to all natural, organic, preservative-free foods. People with environmental allergies may also have to remove sources of toxic chemicals and fumes from the home, including cleaners, carpeting and other sources of ‘out-gasing’.

In the 30+ years that I have been working with allergic patients, I have seen them make remarkable progress once they commit to tracking down the ‘triggering’ substances (including stress inducing thought patterns) that set off their symptoms. The use of nutritional supplements and herbs can be extremely helpful, non-toxic adjunctive therapy to dietary and life-style changes.

Anti-Allergy Cocktail:

2000mg powdered , buffered Vit C
100 mg Vitamin B-6
1000 mg Magnesium
1000 mg Calcium
250 mg Bioflavonoids

mix all into 1/2 glass water up to  2 times / day during an allergy attack

Bromelain( a digestive enzyme from Pineapple) and Quercitin( one of the bioflavonoids) work well together to offset an allergic reaction

Allergic reactions involve many different organ systems of the body, besides the area that manifests symptoms. These include the respiratory system, the liver and the adrenal glands. Using herbs to strengthen these systems will give your body a preventative edge over allergic reactions, and will further help decrease the severity of uncomfortable symptoms.

Herbs for Allergies:

Licorice – the most widely studied adrenal herb. Licorice has anti-inflammatory actions similar to the glucocorticoids (which are produced by healthy adrenals) and are involved with resolving allergic reactions. It also preserves the effects of cortisol, the adrenal hormone involved in clearing allergies.(avoid with high blood pressure)

Ginseng- the onset of allergies can be attributed to stress. The adaptogenic properties of Ginseng allow the adrenal glands to balance stress while creating an overall resistance to allergic reactions, colds, flu and infections.

Dandelion – nutritive and strengthening herb for the liver. It helps clear toxins and stimulates the liver to work towards the resolution of the allergic reaction.

Milk Thistle- acts as both a protector and regenerator of the liver. This herb helps repair damaged tissue and support the actions necessary for dealing with allergens and their accompanying symptoms.

Nettles and Eyebright- work well together to calm nasal congestion, watery eyes and stuffiness often experienced by allergy sufferers.  They are appropriate remedies for short-term relief, and may also be taken before the season begins as a means of prevention for pollen allergies.

Ma Huang- contains natural ephedrine. Psuedo-ephedrine is the active ingredient in prescription and over-the-counter allergy medications. Ma Huang acts to open the bronchial passageways.  Due to its stimulating nature, use Ma Huang with caution if you have high blood pressure, heart disease, etc.

Elder Flower – acts to increase bronchial secretions and is a natural decongestant. Helps to soothe mucous membranes.

Mullein and Fenugreek- traditionally used for upper respiratory problems. Helps to clear mucous and support the lungs.

Echinacea and Goldenseal- combat both the discomfort of allergies as well as reduce excess mucous from the nasal and respiratory tract.

Ellen KamhiEllen Kamhi PhD RN , The Natural Nurse®  is the author of The Natural Medicine Chest, Arthritis, The Alternative Medicine Definitive Guide, Cycles of Life, Herbs and Energetics for Women, Weight Loss: The Alternative Medicine Guide, and other books. She is on radio/TV daily, and consults with individuals and the Nutraceutical Industry.  http://www.naturalnurse.com

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