Astragalus Oil And Its Herbal Healing Qualities

astragalus oil 41119Astragalus oil comes from a plant native to Northern China. Its proper name is Astragalus Membranaceus and it’s made from the root. Other names it is known by are also Huang Qi, Hwanggi and Bei Qi. This plant is really a member of the pea family. It has yellow roots and has a sweet-smelling flower.

Health Benefits

Astragalus oil has great health benefits and can be used as a massage oil, made into a cream and also into tea. It is commonly used for many things from fatigue, low immunity, ulcers, flu and to prevent allergies. It may also assist with shortness of breath, bloating, night sweats and urinary tract infections. Due to the fact that it assists in raising immunity is can assist with many other illnesses also.

The Astragalus plant contains zinc, iron, copper, magnesium, manganese, calcium, potassium, selenium and sodium. Some of the benefits of using the oil are that it may help increase your white blood cell count, stimulate antibody production, lower cholesterol levels, glucose levels and improve the digestive system. The oil in some instances has been known to assist greatly with stomach ulcers, liver and kidney function.

Before using Astragalus oil it is best to check with your health care practitioner. Don’t just go and buy any aromatherapy oil without consulting a natural therapist. Also make sure you buy the proper brands – organic and no chemicals. There are certain times you should not use this oil though such as while you are pregnant or breast feeding or if you are under a doctor’s care then you need to check with both the doctor and the natural therapist if it is not conflicting with treatment or prescribed medications. Also check if you have any allergic reactions to the pea family with your natural practitioner through a simple test.

Making Astragalus at home

If you want to make Astragalus oil at home you will need Astragalus roots, a carrier oil, which is the base of your mixture – like sweet almond, coconut or grapeseed oil. You need to use an unbleached cheesecloth and have a way to store it.

Combine the Astragalus root with the base carrier oil, 1 cup of carrier oil to every ¼ ounce of Astragalus. Heat the mixture slowly over low heat 60 degrees Celsius for about 6 hours or so. Once done strain the mix through the cloth and put it into a glass jar. To store place the jar in a cool, dark place and it will last for about 6months before its properties will decline. This mix can only be used externally.

If you want to use Astragalus as an herbal tea the recommended dose is 3 to 6 grams of the dried root to 12 ounces of water up to three times a day. However, I would consult your healthcare professional for advice before you use any aromatherapy oil.


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What To Do For Anxiety Issues

woman working girl sitting

Photo by Alexander Dummer on

Feeling tension is often a normal response to uncertainty in our lives but if it turns to overwhelm it can translate as stress and anxiety. Constant change can bring too many disruptions to our lives and make us feel unstable. This may in turn stop us from doing things that allow us to live to our full potential. This is when we need to do something to manage the anxiety so that it doesn’t control us.

Reasons we get anxiety

Some of the most common causes of anxiety are lack of boundaries, taking on too many things at once, neglect of yourself over others needs and compromising your principles to try to fit in. Often behaviour patterns run in families so whilst anxiety may not be heredity the pattern within a family may be. Issues such as low self-esteem, risk avoidance, and thinking patterns like perfectionism and control issues which can cause anxiety are often passed as patterns from parents, unknowingly, to their children and in turn down the inheritance line. Sometimes our previous life experiences can also trigger an anxiety attack when we are put in similar situations. If anxiety is unchecked it can develop into panic attacks and depression.

Managing the anxiety

The first step to starting to manage and control the anxiety is to recognise that it is causing issues for you. If your anxiety is severe you may not be able to manage it yourself and will need to seek help from a professional.

In some cases, where your anxiety is being caused by things such as a job interview or examination it may be ‘good’ anxiety as it can push to work better or  project yourself better to the interviewer. This kind of anxiety is only temporary. Anxiety can be managed more easily by meditation and mindfulness, yoga, tai chi and meridian tapping such as EFT. Seek out a trained and certified teacher to help you with these.

Add to this some relaxing herbs to help keep you calm which you can get from a qualified practitioner (not the health food store as they don’t know your particular case). Acupuncture also can have a positive effect as it can help balance the flow of energy through your body, heal your organs and create a positive ‘chi’ affect.

Counselling can help you get some of the causes into perspective and hypnotherapy can help you eliminate the cause, help overcome fears and phobias.

So instead of letting your anxiety take control of your life and stop you from living your life to your full potential, take control of your anxiety by seeing a qualified practitioner to help you get things back on track.

Contact this clinic for help with most of the above and we will teach you some techniques to cope with your stress and anxiety.

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Listening – how to make it work for you

listening.Are you a good listener? Many people think they are and get very surprised when they find that they are not. It’s important in business and in your personal life to listen. Especially if you are in customer service areas as you need to understand your customers’ needs and wants. The better you do this the more successful your business will become.

Many people think good listening is about letting the other person finish what they want to say, not interrupting and making appropriate sounds to let them know you are listening. That is not the case. Often people also repeat back to you what you said as an exercise to show they are listening to you. This can be very annoying and even sometimes patronising.

Recent research shows that good listeners are usually people who ask questions that show interest and prompt discovery of new information. Questions that may challenge a little yet are constructive. A good question tells the speaker that you have understood what they said and want extra information. So good listening is a dialog meaning an active conversation.

Sometimes it’s good to give positive feedback to what the person said as this makes the speaker feel supported, more confident and lets them know there is an atmosphere open to free discussion. Feedback can then be smooth without defensives. It shows you are not looking for errors to pick on and you are not looking to give a challenging response. Of course if you disagree you may challenge what was said but it’s not an argument to be won, it’s a conversation with a constructive end in view.

Good listeners make suggestions and provide solid feedback which may lead to altered perspectives without attacking the other person. Often it is not the fact that someone has a different perspective to you it is the way that perspective is presented. If your objections are presented in a defensive way it can be off putting to reaching solid, constructive conclusions.

Being a good listener does not mean you need to absorb like a sponge the other person’s comments. It’s not about being passive, shaking your head and being silent. Instead you need to bounce back ideas of them, give positive ideas filled with energy to spark interest in what you have to say and ask questions to clarify your thinking.

A quick guide to some things you can do to be a better listener may be to clear away distractions, turn off phones and laptops, focusing on the other person, make eye contact. This creates a good respectful atmosphere for both of you which can enable you to discuss even the most difficult of issues. Taking a step forward there needs to be a genuine desire to understand what the person is saying. What are their ideas? Ask them questions and make sure you clarify anything you don’t understand. Also look for non-verbal cues – facial expressions, perspiration, how are they breathing, sitting etc. Are they crossing their arms, shutting you out? Are they leaning forward – interested? This will help you to add flow to your conversation with them and once you get started you will find the rapport will build and resolution will come more easily to the discussion.

As hard as it may be sometimes try to be non-judgmental and supportive to their opinion, even if you disagree. Don’t jump in with your emotions and stamp on everything they say. Instead clarify why they feel the way they do.

Finally empathy is a very important part of listening. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes and imagine things from their perspective. Maybe then you will see a sliver of their point of view.

Listening is a skill and the more you use it the better you will become at it. Being a good listener also has a flip side. It will help you understand when someone is actually listening to you and gives insight into how to bring about reconciliation when they are not listening. Good communication is one of the most important skills we can learn in both our business and personal lives.

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Hearing Loss Can Easily Happen – Protect It

earHearing is one of those things that we don’t think about much when we are young. Only when we get older and start to notice that we struggle to hear clearly does it gain importance. By then it could be too late. We might find that we need to turn up the volume on our TV or radio or we can’t hear people say things to us sometimes. Hearing loss is common and happens to a lot of people.

Our hearing works by a combination of 3 sections in our ears. These three sections in our ear convert sound vibrations into messages that are sent to the brain. The vibrations first pass through the outer ear, they are then turned into pressure waves by the middle ear and finally translated by the inner ear. The inner ear translates it into signals our brains understand. When something interrupts this process, it causes problems with hearing.

Types of hearing loss

Some people have congenital hearing loss when they are born. This is usually tested before a new born baby leaves the hospital. Others hearing loss is progressive and due to a number of things. Progressive hearing loss can be caused by noise, age or it can be caused by an injury or illness. Some peoples hearing loss is preventable which is why we should be paying attention to our hearing from an early age.

The two types of hearing loss are conductive, which is due to something blocking the ear such as wax, liquid from a cold, infection or allergy. This is usually temporary and can be relieved by medication. The second type is sensorineural hearing loss caused by too much noise, injury, ageing and illnesses. This type of damage is most likely permanent.

Protecting your hearing

To protect your hearing, you need to be conscious of the situations around you at all times. Hearing loss happens over a period of time. We can help protect our hearing by avoiding loud noises, by wearing ear plugs when you are around loud noises such as loud machinery, power tools, fireworks and even music concerts. Be mindful of the volume of headphones when wearing them, keep it down and always take breaks when wearing them for long periods of time.

When working in a noisy environment be sure to always wear your protective ear plugs, as when we are exposed to loud noise for this amount of time it can cause damage. If ear plugs are not supplied you can ask for them or alternatively you can buy them at the chemist.

There are different tests available to check your hearing. There are also home hearing tests that you can get but if you feel you have hearing loss you should see your health care professional to organise to get your ears professionally tested.


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Resolving the inflammation of Chronic Disease – Wellness Review

The rise in chronic inflammatory disease

Did you know that half of the Australian population lives with a chronic disease? Chronic inflammatory diseases have reached epidemic levels in many countries; they can occur throughout the body and affect all body systems. You may be currently managing one of these conditions, such as asthma and allergies, obesity, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, cancer, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, coeliac disease, ulcerative colitis, or cancer. The good news is that by resolving the inflammation that underlies these conditions, you may experience reduction in symptoms or reduce the risk of these conditions occurring.

Inflammation: the new epidemic?

Inflammation is a protection mechanism; the body’s natural and healthy response to injury or threat. When the body is exposed to an injury, microbe or tissue damage, these stimuli will call the inflammatory ‘troops’ to the area to help address the issue. Inflammation will prevent further injury by causing:

  • Swelling – immobilises the area to prevent further damage
  • Pain – reminds the brain to protect the area and forces the body to stop and rest
  • Redness – increased blood flow to the area to aid healing

In small amounts and for a short term period, inflammation is a beneficial process that prevents further injury and induces the healing process. However, when this process fails to resolve, the ongoing presence of pain, redness and swelling creates new problems; the development of chronic inflammatory disease.

SPMs help switch off inflammation

The body is very effective at switching inflammation ‘on’, but how does it switch it ‘off’? It does this by creating specific messenger cells called Specialised Pro-Resolving Mediators (SPMs) which migrate to the inflammation source in the body and help turn off or resolve the inflammatory process. SPMs are made from omega-3 essential fatty acids, mainly eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), obtained from fish oil. Unfortunately, during chronic inflammation states, your body’s ability to produce these SPMs is compromised, which leaves the inflammation switch in the ‘on’ position, leading to chronic pain and other symptoms.

Fish oil and SPMs work together to reduce inflammation

While derived from fish oil, SPMs have unique properties that differ from those of fish oil. Fish oil is the perfect first line of defence when it comes to combating inflammation generally, especially if dietary intake is inadequate or if there is an increased demand (e.g. pregnancy). SPMs may be considered the second line of defence and have a key role in resolving existing chronic inflammation. As they have complementary actions, there is benefit in taking both fish oil and SPMs together – fish oils can prevent new inflammation from occurring while SPMs resolve existing inflammation; making it perfect for targeting the chronic disease conditions mentioned above.

Live an anti-inflammatory lifestyle

The following tips can help reduce inflammation in your daily life, for better health:

  • Adopt an anti-inflammatory diet: The food you consume can help to reduce the overall inflammatory load on the body. Get creative experimenting with some of the following foods in your daily diet: oily fish, olive oil, avocado, walnuts, turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, dark leafy green vegetables, blueberries, purple grapes, broccoli, cauliflower, beetroot and carrot.
  • Incorporate gentle movement: Moving your body increases emotional resilience, improves pain management, and range of motion. Try low impact activities such as yoga, tai-chi, walking, cycling, water aerobics and swimming.
  • Stay hydrated: Dehydration causes your muscles and joints to shrivel up, so it makes sense that having well hydrated ‘juicy’ and fluid muscles and joints helps ease pain. Aim to drink 30 mL of water per kilogram of body weight each day.• Sleep soundly: Your body does its best repair work when you are solidly catching Z’s. Ensuring you are getting adequate rest is vital to heal the inflamed parts of your body.

Do you need help putting out the inflammation fire?

Talk to your Practitioner today if you are stuck in the cycle of chronic inflammation with recurring pain and symptoms. SPMs and other natural medicines can help resolve the underlying inflammation and support your body’s ability to heal, to provide you with greater relief.

Call us or email today if you are stuck in the cycle of chronic inflammation with recurring pain and symptoms. This wellness review is produced from Metagenics Australia. This clinic uses these and other natural products to assist your wellbeing.

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Aromatherapy And How It Can Assist Your Health

aromatherapy and your health 270619Aromatherapy oils smell great as well as being beneficial for your health. They can help you to relax after a stressful day or help calm you if you suffer from anxiety or panic attacks. Aromatherapy oils can be used as massage oils or burned in an oil burner to fill the air in a room. When looking at the different oils it is important to know that if the base ingredient in the oils is chemical you will be absorbing those chemicals into your blood stream as well as the aromatherapy oil. It is important to only use natural based oils. If making a base for a massage oil you can use sweet almond, grapeseed or jojoba as carrier oils which are more easily washed out of sheets and absorbed easily by the skin.

When mixing oils, you only need to mix a few at a time. Use those that you like and smell good but there are a few rules you need to follow. If you are pregnant or suffer with epilepsy stay away from oils such as Neroli and Rosemary as they can cause early contractions or increase blood pressure and bring on seizers. If you have low blood pressure you also need to avoid Ylang Ylang.

If you suffer with panic attacks or are feeling anxious try Geranium, Lavender, Frankincense, Neroli, Rose Chamomile or Sweet Orange oil. However, don’t use them all together, just choose a few to put in a carrier oil. Geranium and Rose can help balance hormones. You can put the oils on a tissue or in an oil burner and they will have a calming effect.

Having trouble sleeping? Try some lavender, chamomile and a little eucalyptus, or if you are unwell with the flu, use pine instead. These will help you get a better night’s sleep.

Cyprus, Fennel, Geranium, Juniper, Orange, Rosemary or sage will help you with fluid retention if you get puffiness anywhere in your body. Vitamin B6 is a good supplement to use for this as well. It is important to remember we need to drink at least 2 litres of water a day to keep our kidneys working properly. You can use the oils either in a bath or as a massage oil but you must always mix oils with a carrier oil if you use them in this way.

Aromatherapy oils can also help with a body detox. Oils that are effective for detoxing include Rosemary, Tea Tree and Juniper Berry. An easy and effective recipe using these is in a carrier oil of grapeseed or sweet almond (50ml) use 4 drops Juniper, 5 Rosemary, 3 Tea Tree and 8 Lemon but make sure they are the pure essential oil.

If you suffer with eczema use avocado, bergamot, chamomile, evening primrose, geranium, jojoba, lavender, melissa and orange oils which may offer some temporary relief from symptoms.

Aromatherapy oils are effective when used correctly however you must be mindful of what you can and can’t use if you are pregnant or suffer with pre-existing health issues such as high or low blood pressure, kidney or urinary disorders or epilepsy. It is always good to consult a natural therapist or Aromatherapist who can help you get the recipes right.

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How To Stay Happier In Your Life

coupleBusy, stressful days take their toll so it is important to remember to slow down and chill out sometimes. If you don’t do this then life can become overwhelming, you become stressed, anxious, unhappy and depressed. If you are starting to feel this is happening to you there are a few things you can do to make your life happier.

Don’t hold onto the past and stop making excuses

If you want to move forward in life you need to be able to let go and forgive the past. This does not mean to forget as the past is a good way to learn what not to do. However holding onto anger, sadness and negative thoughts or feelings just holds you back, weighs you down and stops you from achieving goals and dreams. Most people that are unhappy find that this is a huge part of the reason. Learn to be kind to yourself and treat yourself as you would a best friend. It’s ok to mistakes, it’s ok to fight with someone and get angry and it is ok to be sad and unhappy at times but we need to also remember to move on from these things otherwise we end up making our whole lives a misery. Don’t make excuses – replace them with positive thinking and to help you with that smart people see a counsellor or therapist for new input, to bounce ideas off or to teach them new coping and management skills for their life.

You don’t have to be always right but you do need to take responsibility for your actions

Some people have to always be right and take it personally if they are caught out and considered not right. If you are wrong then you need to own up. It’s ok to say you were wrong. This kind of behaviour is a leftover from our past when we were children and praised for good behaviour. Sometimes if we did the wrong thing we would blame others and not take responsibility for our actions for fear of punishment. In this way as adults we sometimes always try to be right and not take responsibility when we are wrong. It’s a left over bad habit we learnt as a child. A compulsion to always be right and reaction to shift the blame can come from a fear of losing friends, becoming isolated and fear of being isolated and unhappy. Controlling the urge to be right all the time will help stop this from happening. Taking responsibility for your mistakes and own up. This will earn people’s trust and respect.

Lose your unreasonable expectations and limited beliefs

Reaching a goal at work or a promotion in some ways might be more burdening than you think. Are you struggling to get through the work load? This often leads to feelings of self-doubt and a belief of failure when this is not the case. If something is too much for you then you may need to be more practical and step back from the situation as it could be compromising other areas of your life and affecting your happiness. Are you putting unreasonable expectations on yourself? Are you trying to please everyone else? This needs to stop and you need to sometimes put your own happiness first. Or is it the reverse? Are your limiting beliefs telling you that you are not good enough and that is holding you back from something your heart dearly desires? In that case you need more faith in yourself and your abilities and to just ‘do it’. Often you will find you are more capable than you expected.

Eating habits and your health

These have a lot to do with your happiness. If you eat the wrong foods then they will impact on your weight, physical health and moods. A high sugar and fatty diet may give you a sugar rush but it will impact on all three of these. It is therefore important to have a healthy diet of fruit, vegetables and protein and some carbohydrates. It is important to eat smaller meals at least 5 times a day rather than large ones and to not overeat. Drink plenty of water, get enough sleep, exercise a few times a week for about an hour at a time and you will find that on all levels your health and energy levels will improve.

There are many people that will help you put into place ways to make your life happier. See a therapist, a naturopath, a nutritionist, an energy worker, get a massage, fix your back with a chiropractor if you need to, use NLP to change those patterns and get a check-up with a doctor every six months with a blood test. No person is an island. We all need people around us to assist us in our lives. All of these practitioners can make your life easier and happier so every so often consult a professional to help you stay on track with your health and goals.

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