It’s fall, it’s colorful, it’s cool and it’s the best time to be outside! Last month, we looked at Green Bandaids for accidents in the outback, but have you ever been away from home when diarrhea, vomiting or any other trip-ruining health disaster struck? Who do you call? Not Ghost Busters! Unless you are seriously ill and need immediate medical care, you may not need to call anyone if you have your trusty herbal Camp/Travel Kit with you. You might say it’s natural ways to treat injuries in nature.
Whether I am traveling or in the boonies or just traveling away from home, there are several items I consider vital for a good–stay-well-but-just-in-case–safe trip. They include Tei Fu EO, activated charcoal capsules, ginger capsules or tea, silver gel (cleaning and disinfecting cuts, wounds, etc.), and the following tinctures: burdock/dandelion, teasel, valerian root, wood Betony, echinacea, and mullein. I also take some of my handy-dandy poultice kits with me for bites, burns and cuts/wounds. In fact, I have put together my “Trayfoot Mountain Camp Herbal Kit” which includes all of the above. Let’s take it from the top:
Activated Charcoal: A must have for mild food poisoning or food additives reaction resulting in a fun-ending round of diarrhea. (You just can’t have a good adventure when you can’t leave the porcelain throne.) Also good for chemical poisoning, belching, blood poisoning, gas and bloating; motion sickness and poisoning in general. To be on the safe side, if you think you have any type of poisoning, contact the Poison Control Center! Of course, they may recommend you take activated charcoal.
Ginger Capsules or Tea: Ginger may help with nausea and vomiting and also motion sickness. It may even relieve flu and cold/cough symptoms.
Tinctures: Tinctures are strong herbal medicine made by soaking herbs in alcohol such as vodka or brandy and then taking the strained liquid by the drop. The tinctures I have chose for my kit are ones that can be used for several different symptoms.
Burdock/Dandelion Tincture: This one is definitely a must have for about two dozen reasons from balancing blood sugar levels to purifying the blood. It is also good for arthritis, gout, allergies, sinus, sinus infections, liver support, kidney support (a natural diuretic) and more. This is one I make big batches of so we never run out.
Echinacea Tincture: We all know this one is good for colds, bronchitis, and infections however, never take it for more than 10 days at a time or if you have an overactive immune system.
Mullein Tincture: Mullein is wonderful for allergies, but it is also a good pain reliever. It has narcotic-like properties, however, don’t get all excited and gather the leaves for a relaxing smoke…you may relax, but you will not get high and it does not taste good! Native Americans smoked the leaves for lung issues.
Silver Shield Rescue Gel: I keep this anyplace I might need to disinfect a wound, cut or bite. It is in my studio, my bathroom, my car and my Camp Kit.
Teasel Tincture: Matthew Wood says teasel tincture is a remedy for Lyme disease. Any time we get a tiny bite we start using this tincture immediately. FYI: Wood says that taking Teasel Tincture daily for 18 months will eradicate all of the parasites associated with Lyme Disease. We spend a lot of time in tick country so this is another one that is essential!
Valerian Root Tincture: This one is wonderful after a long strenuous outdoor day. It relaxes muscles/muscle spams, pain, promotes sleep, is very calming and is good for the heart.
Wood Betony: I wrote an article about Wood Betony a couple of months ago and I have been hard-pressed to keep up with the demand for the tincture. Must have something to do with helping with short term memory loss. Here is an excerpt from that article: “Wood Betony is a nervine that both relaxes and strengthens muscles, nerves and organs and has a very potent effect on the brain and mental functions. The following list are some the symptoms expert Matthew Wood says may be helped with Wood Betony: promotes cerebral circulation, opens the arterial blood supply, and may reduce high blood pressure. Used in the past for vertigo, headache, loss of memory, comprehension difficulties, facial neuralgia, migraines, irritated and watery eyes. Traditional authorities say it may prevent strokes or will stimulate improvement when given shortly after a stroke. Other sources say that it may help with learning disabilities, bed wetting, bronchitis, convulsions, gout, heartburn, insect bites, jaundice, parasites, sprains, tonsillitis and varicose veins.” If you want to read the whole article, go to my website trayfoot.com, tap on the Wholistically Speaking button and scroll down though recent articles until you find it.
We came up with this idea one day while making tea bag blends. Wondering out loud, we thought of putting dried herbs that are used on injuries (poultices) in these little bags, sealing them closed and then keeping them on hand. To use, lay the bag in a shallow dish, add enough water (hot is possible) to just cover the bag and let set for 5-10 minutes. Remove from the water and apply to affected area. The following poultice packs are included in my Camp Kit: plantain for bites and stings; burdock, comfrey and yarrow blend for all the other things that could happen in nature or while traveling. This is a synergistic blend that my be used to stop bleeding, for swellings, broken bones, sprains, sciatica, burns and bruises. Notice I have burdock in a poultice and in a tincture. This way you can heal from the inside out!
I left the best one for last. Tei Fu Essential Oil. This is a tiny bottle of a wonderful essential oil blend which I never, never go anywhere without. I have a bottle in my pocket, beside my chair, beside my bed and down at the pond. I use it for bug bites and stings, headache and arthritis pain (rub a drop on painful area), stuffy nose and sinus (rub a drop briskly between your palms and then hold over your nose and inhale). You may also rub a drop on painful sinus areas, but keep away from your eyes because it really burns the eyes. I even add a few drops to bottled water and sip if I am feeling queasy. Well, to tell the truth, I just put a drop on my tongue. Also great for mouth ulcers and fever blisters. There is more, but I am out of space!
Please know that I have just given you a few uses of each of the herbs. All have many more healing talents and I encourage you to research each for more remedy ideas. Get outside this fall, but don’t forget to take your Camp Herbal Kit!
Note: If you are interested in purchasing a custom herbal kit, contact me to place your order and get pricing.Important Note! The information in Wholistically Speaking is for educational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose and/or treat diseases. If you have a health problem, I highly recommend you consult a competent health practitioner and educate yourself before embarking on any course of treatment.