Herbs have been grown at my various gardens since I started gardening, both culinary and medicinal. For me the difference between herbs for cooking and herbs for treating ailments is not totally separate. For instance nasturtiums which we use for their spicy flavour also have antiseptic properties and contain vitamin C and iron. Lemon Verbena which makes the most delicious tea has mild sedative properties and is good for bronchial and digestion problems.
On April 30tht the Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products Directive comes into force in all EU countries. This directive is set to remove access to the vast majority of herbal medicinal products. Herbalists will be restricted in what they can prescribe. Under the new rules, herbs, many of which have been in common use for thousands of years, will have to undergo the same testing procedures as pharmecutical drugs. As this costs between 80,ooo to 120,000 euros for each herb the outcome is already known, the road is clear for Big Pharma. The lobbyists have won the day, or have they? I for one will increase my stock of herbs and the remedies I make with them.
St.John’s Wort grows and spreads very easily. A tincture can be made from it which is known to be very effective for depression. Natural and without the side-effects of Prozac, but of course that does’nt create income streams for Big Pharma. Does’nt disempower people and turn them into addicts. The flowers and leaves covered with olive oil and left in a sunny spot for 4-6 weeks will turn a lovely red colour, that is good for burns, swellings and other skin traumas.
Pot Marigold which self-seeds here each year is a visual delight sprinkled on a salad. It also has soothing, healing and antiseptic properties. Do empower yourself if not already doing so, grow some herbs, eat some herbs, make tinctures and ointments. It is an enjoyable process and liberates you from Big Pharma.