Category Archives: Herbal Care

Broccoli Boosts Aging Immune Systems

A chemical in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables may help to restore your immune system as you age. UCLA researchers found that the chemical, sulforaphane, switches on a set of antioxidant genes and enzymes in specific immune cells, which fight the damaging effects of free radicals.

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Free radicals are a supercharged form of oxygen that can cause oxidative tissue damage — for example, they can trigger the inflammation process that causes clogged arteries. Oxidative damage is thought to be one of the major causes of aging.

According to researchers, treating older mice with sulforaphane increased their immune response to the level of younger mice.

The ability of sulforaphane to reinvigorate the immune system abilities of aged tissues could play an important role in reversing much of the negative impact of free radicals.
Sources:
Science Daily March 10, 2008
The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology March 6, 2008

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Can Anise Cure What Ails You?

The licorice-flavored herb anise contains high levels of health-boosting compounds called phenylpropanoids.

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A team of researchers isolated 22 compounds in anise essential oils, and found some phenylpropanoid compounds that were unique to anise, and four of the compounds had never before been identified in any plant.

Aside from effectively controlling aphids and the plant fungus Colletotrichum, the compounds also showed promise for human health problems. Specifically, some of the compounds were effective against:

Plasmodium falciparum, the parasite that causes malaria in humans.
Mycobacterium intracellulare, a bacterium that can cause illness in people with compromised immune systems.
Further, some phenylpropanoids had anti-inflammatory and phytoestrogen properties.

The researchers suggested that compounds in anise essential oils may be useful for developing pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals.
Sources:
Science Daily March 12, 2008
Pure and Applied Chemistry 2007, Vol. 79, No. 4, pp. 539-556

Some General Hair Care Tips

Proper hair care can give you fabulous, shining, thick, beautiful, gorgeous, and dandruff free hair:

Tips:
1.Oiling hair regularly will prevent various hair problems.
2.Trim the split-ends of the hair regularly.
3.Do not over brush your hair.
4.Brush your hair regularly with a good quality hairbrush/comb. Use a broad toothed comb brush on wet hair. Wash your brush or comb regualrly with soap or shampoo.
5.Avoid the use of other’s comb. Always clean your comb.
6.Do not use very hot air for drying wet hair. Avoid over-exposure to the sun.
7.If you color your hair, try to organic dyes such as henna(mehndi)or coffee and avoid non-organic dyes like peroxides.

HAIR CARE RECIPES:
1.Olive Oil Hair Mask
Mix 5 tablespoon of olive oil with 2 eggs. Apply throughly to hair. Wrap head with plastic wrap or a shower cap. After 15 minutes rinse well.

2.Honey & Olive Oil Hair Mask -1
Mix 2 tablespoon honey with 3 tablespoon olive oil. Apply throughly to hair. Cover hair with plastic wrap or a shower cap. After 15 minutes shampoo and rinse well.

3.Beautiful Gorgeous Hair Mask -2
After you shampoo your hair, pour 1 cup fresh lemon juice or vinegar through hair and massage and rinse with water. Apply your usual conditioner and wash with water. It will remove all the dirt and your hair will be shine sparkling. Do not repeat this method before 2 weeks.

4.Beautiful Gorgeous Hair Mask

Grind fenugreek (methi) seeds soaked in water overnight. Massage this paste on scalp and hair and leave it for15-20 minutes. Wash it off with a mild shampoo. This paste is good for all types of hair problems, viz. dandruffs, falling hair, thinning of hair, baldness, split hair, etc.

5.Hair Rinse for soft and shiny hair
Mix 1 Tbsp of following herbs with enough boiling water and let it stand for 1/2 an hour. Add 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar and mix well. Shampoo your hair. Pour mixture over hair repeatedly. Vinegar will seal the hair cuticle.

6.Use the herbs as following:
For hair general care: rosemary leaves, nettle, burdock root, elder flowers
For dry hair: chamomile flowers, comfre, elder flowersy root, nettle
For oily hair
: lemon peel, , peppermint, lemongrass

7.Shining Hair
Mix juice of one fresh orange, water, 1 tablespoon Honey and a few drops (5-7) of sandalwood oil. Use as an after-shampoo rinse.
Beat two eggs in a tablespoon of milk and apply on your hair. Rinse your hair after 5-7 minutes to get an instant shining.
Add a 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in water and rinse your hair.

8.For Damaged Hair
Mash a ripe banana with a few drops of almond oil and massage into hair. Leave it for about 15 minutes. Rinse with soda water and then shampoo and condition.

9.Dry Hair
Mix 1 tablespoon of honey in half cup of full cream milk. Massage on the scalp and leave it for 15 minutes. Wash with a mild shampoo.

Combine 1 banana, 1 egg, 1/4 cup honey, about 3 Tbs of milk and about 5 Tbs spoons of olive oil. Massage on the scalp and leave it for 15 minutes. Wash with a mild shampoo.

Zinc and essential fatty acids (pumpkin seeds, nuts, vegetable oils) are good for dry hair. Eating the foods rich in zinc help.

10.Falling Hair, Hair Loss
Rub Indian gooseberry (Amla) into the scalp regularly. It can show wonderful results, it will stop hair falling.
Eat a protein rich diet inluding green leafy vegetables, carrots, mango, dried apricots, whole grain cereals, sprouts, lentils in the daily diet for the hair loss and falling hair.

11.Split Hair
Oil your hair twice a week with coconut oil mixed with fresh lime juice.

12.Frizzy Hair
Make an after-shampoo rinse by mixing one tablepsoon of honey to a liter of water. Use it after every hair wash with your usual shampoo.

Source:http://www.fatfreekitchen.com/beauty/hair-care.html

Going The Sunny Way

A rating of 15 means 93 per cent of UV rays are blocked

Some studies have shown that people typically apply just 10 percent of the amount recommended (TOI Photo)

Everyone knows that an SPF rating of 60 provides double the protection of SPF 30 or does it? Studies over the years have shown that sunscreen with an SPF, or sun protection factor, of 30 blocks about 97 per cent of ultraviolet rays.

A rating of 15 means 93 per cent of UV rays are blocked, and anything higher than 30 remains in the 97 or 98 per cent range.

In 1999 the US Food and Drug Administration recommended that sunscreens with an SPF higher than 30 be labelled 30+, mostly to prevent people from developing a false sense of security that might lead them to spend more time in the sun. What many people do not realise is that the amount of sunscreen applied plays an enormous role.

A study in The British Journal of Dermatology this year found that applying less than two ounces over the entire body at one time can leave people with an SPF rating far lower than what is on the bottle.

Some studies have shown that people typically apply just 10 percent of the amount recommended. It is also important to look for sunscreens that protect against UVA and UVB radiation. SPF ratings apply only to UVB rays, and some sunscreens provide no protection at all against UVA rays, which penetrate the skin more deeply.

For broad protection, look for sunscreens with avobenzone, zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, all of which block UVA.

SOurce:The Times Of India

Champagne for Your Skin?

I drink Champagne when I win, to celebrate… and I drink champagne when I lose, to console myself,” said Napoleon Bonaparte. The loyal patrons of the bubbly look for reasons to toast the flute and then, trivial reasons turn into occasions. Said Dom Perignon joyously, the inventor of the champagne, “Come quickly, I am tasting the stars!”

Champagne has witnessed special moments between lovers, always been there to make victory and merrymaking special! Now, there’s something extraordinary to add to the list: the magical effects of the bubbly on our skin. Find out…

Cleopatra owed her glowing skin to donkey’s milk, Teri Hatcher of Desperate Housewives  fame owes it to wine and Cindy Crawford to the leftover milk from her kid’s  feed. Celebrities do different things to preserve their vanity, but do you know how the beautiful aromatherapist Blossom Kocchar manages to look radiant always? The secret is a glass of Champagne. Not to cheer her mood, but to cheer up her skin so that it blooms like a flower. Bathing in the rich and bubbly Champagne does wonders to our moods and is magical for our skin.

Blossom Kocchar is my beauty guru who taught me how to look beautiful. Recently I read an article where she talks about the benefits of Champagne on skin. Now, I was curious and to pacify my curiosity I called her up. You will be amazed to know what she said…
Our skin is constantly exposed to pollution, sun, smoke and stress. It needs constant pampering to look good at all times. Champagne can do that task well because it has antioxidants. Antioxidants are components that prevent the free radicals from damaging our cells. These free radicals can react extensively to rob our skin of oxygen, making it look haggard. But an antioxidant prevents the damage and gives our skin an eternal youthfulness.

Champagne contains Tartaric acid, which lightens your skin, i.e., prevent pigmentation. It is a relief to know this as I have eternal complains of pigmentation. Kocchar adds,  The molecules of Champagne are so small that they never sit on our cells.” The thick creams that we get from the market are so heavy that they settle on our cells, doing no good to our skin. But Champagne is so fine that it can seep into our skin and rejuvenate our cells.

Last but not the least is the fizz that is produced when Champagne is poured into a dry glass. Not only does it look beautiful, but it also does wonders to our skin… helps close pores, making the skin tight, firm and glowing.

Here are a few more tips on Champagne from the herbal world. Dr Pammi Kapoor, a consultant, trainer and manager at Amatrra says,  Champagne helps in detoxifying. It is a good toner but leaves the skin dry, so it works well for oily skin. People with dry skin should avoid it.  Another herbal expert Suman Seth says,  Champagne is great to set your hair.

Never knew a bottle of bubbly packed so many goodies! In Kochhar’s words, “Drink it and use it.”

Source: The Times Of India