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Spring Herbal Tonics

The season of spring is aligned with the direction of east and the element of air. It's like a baby taking its first breath being born into this world, or a tiny seedling when it finally pushes up through the surface of the soil and feels the cool spring breezes. Or like the morning sun, greeting you as you stir from your night's slumber.

As we shift away from winter's colder days and the spicy, heavier foods that kept us warm all winter, our liver often needs support. A bogged down liver that is holding the heat from our winter meals and less activity expresses itself through skin rashes, headaches, maybe even migraines, frustration and a higher than normal blood pressure. All of these symptoms says your body has too much heat.

Fortunately, there are several spring plants that are cooling and make great remedies for decreasing the heat in your liver.

Dandelions - you can buy dandelion greens in the grocery store this time of year and toss them in your salads, your smoothies or saute them on the stove. You can also buy dandelion root tea or coffee and have it as your morning drink. It has a wonderful mild taste and is so good for cooling your liver. And of course, you can always harvest your own spring greens. You want to harvest them when their young and before they flower so the leaves don't get too bitter.

Beautiful patch of chickweed!

Chickweed - we have a large patch of chickweed growing near our pond. In the spring, I gather a handful each morning and add it to my smoothies. It's super good for you and is one of the main plants used in spring tonics.

Chamomile - chamomile is another plant that's great for cooling your liver and so easy to find in the tea section of your grocery store. My chamomile doesn't grow this early at Hawk Circle, so I can't use it fresh, but the tea works great.

There are also a variety of essential oils that you can rub on your feet and over your liver area to help reduce excess heat. Here's a list of several common oils: Chamomile, helichrysum, Jasmine, lavender and lemon.

Please remember: When harvesting plants, make sure you have identified them correctly and are harvesting from a clean area, free of pesticides, road pollution and animal or pet feces. And when using essential oils, PLEASE test a very small amount on your skin OR add several drops to a small bottle of a carrier oil such as olive, grape seed, jojoba, or almond so as not to irritate or burn your skin.

Happy Spring!


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