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The Many Benefits of Flowers

Flowers have a long past of being heralded for more than just their beautiful scents and appealing looks. The tradition of utilizing flowers as herbal remedies goes back to 500 A.D., and throughout the world’s history we have often cultivated them for clothing, herbal medicines, foods and teas. Additionally, many flowers have an abundance of homeopathic health uses, including reducing toxins in the air, aiding in digestion and increasing vitamin C levels.

As the old saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers,” which means that this month is a great time to discover a few of the many blooming buds that contain various health benefits. Keep reading for tips on how to take full advantage of some of the gorgeous flowers that will be blooming all month long.

Rosehips: A plant that grows up to ten feel tall with a white, fragrant flower, rose hips are the fruit of a rose. Packed full of vitamin C and antioxidants, studies suggest they may also contain a substance that helps to fight inflammation. To take advantage of their health properties, try sipping them in tea form or incorporating rosehips oil into your nightly skincare regimen.

Peace Lily: A low-maintenance, white flower that does well in shade and cooler temperatures, a well-known study by NASA reported that peace lilies can help to reduce the levels of a number of toxins in the air of your home. The tropical plants break down and neutralizes gases like carbon monoxide, formaldehyde and benzene. For cleaner air, plant one in your home and water only when the leaves start to droop.

Lavender: A tall, purple flower belonging to the mint family, lavender is utilized for everything from sleeplessness to pain treatment. In fact, according to published sales, lavender is the most used essential oil in the world. Try adding a few drops of the oil to your nightly bath water to promote rest and relaxation. If you are not in a mood for bath, many of my patients will heat a cup of water to a rolling boil; then place a few drops of lavender essential oil in the hot water and allow the scent permeate their bedroom (do not drink).

Safflower: A bright yellow and orange thistle-like plant, safflower is commercially grown for vegetable oil. There is some research suggesting safflower oil helps to lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL or “bad”) cholesterol. The cooking oil can be heated to higher temperatures than many other oils, so try using a bit of it to sauté your veggies or cook your eggs.

Chamomile: Similar in looks to a daisy, the chamomile has been used for centuries throughout ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome in teas for stomach ailments such as acid reflux, diarrhea and nausea. It also has a reputation for lightening hair and skin. Try brewing the tea and using it regularly as a final hair rinse in the shower to add bright, golden highlights.

Dr. Axe. (2015). 7 Lavender Oil Benefits for Healing. Retrieved from http://draxe.com/lavender-oil-benefits/
Carey, Elea. (October 22, 2014). Healthy Cooking: Safflower Oil. Retrieved from http://www.healthline.com/health/safflower-oil-healthy-cooking-oil#2
Herb Wisdom. (2015). Chamomile Benefits. Retrieved from http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-chamomile.html
Judd, Joe. (January 30, 2013). Plant of the Month: Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum). Retrieved from http://www.engledow.com/green-scene/2013/01/plant-of-the-month-peace-lily-spathiphyllum/
Oliver, Dana. (June 7, 2013). Rosehip Seed Oil: Why This Miracle Skincare Product Will Be the Next Coconut Oil. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/07/rosehip-seed-oil-benefits_n_3375871.html
Margolin, Cathy, OM. (May, 15, 2011). 7 Flowers that Promote Your Overall Health. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/cathy-margolin-lac-dipl-om/flowers-chinese-medicine_b_858412.html
Science Daily. (February 20, 2009). Indoor Plants Can Reduce Formaldehyde Levels. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090217141419.htm
UPMC HealthBeat. (February 17, 2015). Health Benefits of Flowers. Retrieved from http://share.upmc.com/2015/02/health-benefits-flowers/


Health Tips On the Go!

Improve Posture

  • 1.Avoid slouching. Be aware of your posture as you walk, sit, and drive, keep shoulders squared and head pulled back and up.

  • 2.Imagine a thread pulling the top of your head toward the ceiling. Visualization can help improve your sense of position.

  • 3.If your job requires you to sit for long periods, take frequent breaks to stand, stretch and shake it out.

  • 4.Maintain a strong core to help support proper posture. Add core-training exercises to your daily routine.

  • 5.A firm mattress and ergonomic pillow help achieve proper back support while you sleep, so you'll stand straighter in the a.m.

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