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Is It OK to Take Expired Medicines?

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Do You Take Expired Medications.Lots of people do. Here’s what you need to know.

Oct. 27, 2006 – Last week Debi Loarie was straightening her medicine cabinet when she noticed a 2003 expiration date on some Sudafed. She decided to check everything in her Highland Park, Ill., home.  “I would say 70 percent of the medicine I had in my cabinet was expired,  she says.  Nobody looks. I had stuff from 2001, 1996. ”   She tossed it all.  Why do you want to take a chance,   she says.  When you  are really sick, and you want to feel better, you need that to work.

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Loarie is not alone in holding onto expired medications. This month a survey of more than 1,000 adults by the pharmacy chain Medicine Shoppe found that 65 percent of Americans said they took expired medication. Unlike Loarie, more than half of them said they took them knowingly.


So, does the expiration date matter? Experts say it depends on the individual drug and on storage conditions. Over time, medications do lose some of their strength.  Usually, the worst thing that could happen is it won’t be as potent as you expect it to be,  says Dr. Edward Langston, a pharmacist and family physician in Lafayette, Ind., and chair-elect of the American Medical Association Board of Trustees.

But it can be a more serious problem. Some drugs such as the epinephrine used to treat anaphylactic shock by people allergic to bee stings and certain foods   lose effectiveness faster than others.   When you are having a potentially fatal reaction, that’s not the time you want to find out the drug isn’t as potent as it should be, says pharmacist Michael Negrete, vice president of professional affairs for the California Pharmacists Association. Store Epi-Pens at a consistent temperature, and promptly replace expired ones.

Storage is important for all drugs. Medications break down more quickly in unstable environments. Incredibly, the bathroom, where, according to the survey, 49 percent of Americans store their medications, is a poor choice because of fluctuating temperatures and humidity. (The kitchen, where 29 percent keep their drugs, is a problem for the same reasons.) “Drugs degrade more rapidly   in such conditions, says Negrete. It’s also important to remember that medicine often comes in colored vials to keep out light, which can degrade some drugs. A bedroom, where the temperature is consistent and where medications can be kept out of humidity and sunlight is a better option

In general, expiration dates are shorter on injected medications and longer on oral ones. Anything that comes in a solution form has the potential to degrade very rapidly,   says Todd Cecil, vice president of standards development for the United States Pharmacopeia (USP), the standard-setting authority for prescription and over-the-counter drugs and dietary supplements.  When items are in solution, theres a lot more ability for changes in a molecule to happen vs. in a solid form.â Some products, like aspirin, may last for years past their expiration dates. As aspirin ages, it may become more acidic, smell like vinegar and upset the stomach more, says Langston.  If it has a peculiar odor about it, there must be some decomposition.

Many drugs are fine long after their expiration date. An FDA study of 122 drug products  including Cipro and amoxicillin (both antiobiotics)   for the U.S. Department of Defense, published in July 2006, found that 88 percent were OK up to five years after their original expiration date. (The drugs that did not always remain stable included the antibiotic penicillin G procaine powder and the antimalarial mefloquine HC1 tablets.) Despite the FDA’s findings, most experts say it’s not worth it for the rest of us to take a chance on expired medications. For one thing, the military stores its medications in their original, unopened containers, under rigorously controlled conditions, not in humid bathroom cabinets. My recommendation is, if it’s expired, it’s expired. You  are not going to get the effects you intended,  says pharmacist Bill Bailey, director of specialized care centers for Medicine Shoppe.   The medicine may not work as you intended or have the effects you intended.   Not surprisingly, drugs are more likely to last longer when they  are sealed.   Once you open a bottle up, you begin to have air in there, humidity, in some cases different temperatures and sunlight,  says Bailey.

The FDA requires manufacturers to submit expiration dates   based on    real-time stability data   when they apply for new drug approval. These dates are usually about two years after manufacture, says Langston, but drug makers can submit data and petition for a longer date later, using so-called accelerated stability studies and actual real-time stability data. The longest shelf life is five years. Stability testing is usually conducted at 77 degrees, but manufacturers may do accelerated testing at up to 104 degrees. They run that through their computer models and make a reasonable estimate,   says Langston. These tests aren’t intended to be accurate to the day.  It’s a lot of science, and a little bit of art,   says Langston.

To get rid of expired drugs, check with your local pharmacy, city and county to see if they dispose of medications. If not, remove labels with personal information and then put medicine in the trash  in a childproof container. Be careful, particularly with dangerous drugs.   There are people who rummage through old garbage,   says Langston.   There are reasons medications are prescription drugs.

What does the government recommend?   There  is no clear guidance at the federal level,  says Negrete. In fact, government agencies, along with manufacturers and groups like the American Pharmacists Association (APhA), are looking into the disposal issue now.   It is so difficult,   says Rogene Waite, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Anything you can come up with is going to have an opposite side. There  is not going to be any easy answer    The best answer we have right now is: people are working on it, and stay tuned.   The East Bay Municipal Utility District in Oakland, Calif., is working with the Drug Enforcement Administration to set up a pilot project to allow medicine disposal at pharmacies and other locations. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has no regulations about disposal. There’s just the agency encouraging consumers to be environmentally smart,  says EPA spokeswoman Enesta Jones. Currently, the EPA is evaluating proposals   submitted through Sept. 29  for the disposal of unwanted and unused medications

The bottom line: clean out the medicine cabinet. Besides getting rid of drugs that may not be at their full strength, you could get some unexpected benefits. Once she got rid of two dozen old bottles, Loarie realized she had more cabinet space. And she felt so good about her efforts that she decided to tackle the expired food in her kitchen, too.

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Sources:The News week

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Herbs & Plants


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A Field Marigold flower (Calendula arvensis)Image via Wikipedia

Botanical Name : Calendula Officinalis
Family:    Asteraceae
Tribe:    Calenduleae
Genus:    Calendula
Kingdom:    Plantae
Order:    Asterales

Common Names:  Garden marigold, Poet’s marigold, Pot marigold

Habitat : Calendula  is native to southwestern Asia, western Europe, Macaronesia, and the Mediterranean.

The petals of the calendula plant (Calendula officinalis) have been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. Often referred to as pot marigold or garden marigold, calendula is native to Mediterranean countries but is now grown as an ornamental plant throughout the world. It is important to note, however, that not all household plants called marigold are members of the calendula family.
Folk medicine healers in Europe used infusions, extracts, and ointments prepared with calendula petals to induce menstruation, produce sweat during fevers, and cure jaundice. Calendula preparations were also used in the United States during the 19th century to treat stomach ulcers, liver complaints, conjunctivitis (pink eye), and wounds. Researchers soon discovered that compounds in calendula petals help reduce inflammation and control bleeding. Today, the dried petals of the calendula plant are used in tinctures, ointments, and washes to speed the healing of burns, bruises, and cuts, as well as the minor infections they cause.

Calendula is an annual plant that thrives in virtually any soil but can typically be found in Europe, Western Asia, and the United States. Its branching stems grow to a height of 30 to 60 cm. Calendula has a flowerhead situated on a well-defined green floral receptacle. The inner portion of the flowerhead consists of orange-yellow, tubular florets (often called petals).

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Different Species include:
*Calendula arvensis (Vaill.) L. – field marigold, wild marigold
*Calendula denticulata Schousb. ex Willd.
*Calendula eckerleinii Ohle
*Calendula incana Willd.
*Calendula incana subsp. algarbiensis (Boiss.) Ohle
*Calendula incana subsp. maderensis (DC.) Ohle – Madeiran marigold
*Calendula incana subsp. maritima (Guss.) Ohle – sea marigold
*Calendula incana subsp. microphylla (Lange) Ohle
*Calendula lanzae Maire
*Calendula maritima Guss. – sea marigold
*Calendula maroccana (Ball) Ball
*Calendula maroccana subsp. maroccana
*Calendula maroccana subsp. murbeckii (Lanza) Ohle
*Calendula meuselii Ohle
*Calendula officinalis L. – pot marigold, garden marigold, ruddles, Scottish marigold
*Calendula palaestina Boiss.
*Calendula stellata Cav.
*Calendula suffruticosa Vahl
*Calendula suffruticosa subsp. balansae (Boiss. & Reut.) Ohle
*Calendula suffruticosa subsp. boissieri Lanza
*Calendula suffruticosa subsp. fulgida (Raf.) Guadagno
*Calendula suffruticosa subsp. lusitanica (Boiss.) Ohle
*Calendula suffruticosa subsp. maritima (Guss.) Meikle
*Calendula suffruticosa subsp. monardii (Boiss. & Reut.) Ohle
*Calendula suffruticosa subsp. tomentosa Murb.
*Calendula tripterocarpa Rupr.

Edible Uses:
Calendula species have been used in cooking for centuries. The flowers were a common ingredient in German soups and stews, which explains the nickname “pot marigold”. The lovely golden petals were also used to add color to butter and cheese. The flowers are traditional ingredients in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes. Calendula tea provides health benefits, as well as being delicious.
Meditional Uses:

Throughout the ages, tinctures made from calendula blossoms have been used to treat headaches, toothaches and even tuberculosis. The ancient Romans used calendula to treat scorpion bites and soldiers in the American Civil War found it helped stop wounds from bleeding. There is nothing better for sore or inflamed eyes than to bathe them in marigold water. Calendula is a popular salve and cream ingredient because it decreases the inflammation of sprains, stings, varicose veins and other swellings and soothes burns, sunburn, rashes and skin irritations. Laboratory studies show it kills bacteria and fungus such as ringworm, athlete’s foot. It is gentle enough to be applied as a tea to thrush in children’s mouths.

Taken internally, it has been used traditionally to promote the draining of swollen lymph glands, such as in tonsillitis and as part of the therapy for uterine or breast cancer, both as a poultice and as a tea. Herbalists report success in using a swab of calendula preparation or calendula boluses to treat abnormal cervical cells. Some antitumor activities have been observed in scientific studies. The infusion or tincture helps inflammatory problems of the digestive system such as gastritis, peptic ulcers, regional ileitis and colitis. Calendula has long been considered a detoxifying herb, and helps to treat the toxicity that underlies many fevers and infections and systemic skin disorders such as eczema and acne. The herb is also considered cleansing for the liver (promotes bile production) and gallbladder and can be used to treat problems affecting these organs. Makes a healing mouthwash for gums after tooth extraction.

Calendula has a mild estrogenic action and is often used to help reduce menstrual pain and regulate menstrual bleeding. The infusion makes an effective douche for yeast infections.

Ancient cultures recognized and used the healing properties of calendula. In some of the earliest medical writings, calendula was recommended for treating ailments of the digestive tract. It was used to detoxify the liver and gall bladder. The flowers were applied to cuts and wounds to stop bleeding, prevent infection and speed healing. Calendula was also used for various women’s ailments, and to treat a number of skin conditions. During the American Civil War, calendula flowers were used on the battlefields in open wounds as antihemorrhagic and antiseptic, and they were used in dressing wounds to promote healing. Calendula also was used in this way during World War I. Calendula has been historically significant in medicine in many cultures, and it is still important in alternative medicine today.

Burns, Cuts and Bruises
Calendula tinctures, ointments, and washes are commonly used to speed the healing of burns, bruises, and cuts, as well as the minor infections they cause.

Professional homeopaths often recommend ointments containing homeopathic doses of calendula to heal first-degree burns and sunburns. In fact, some homeopaths consider this remedy the treatment of choice for children. Homeopathic calendula ointments may also be used in the healing stages of second- and third-degree burns to stimulate regrowth of skin and to diminish scar formation.
Ear Infection
Homeopathic doses of calendula also appear to reduce pain caused by ear infections in children. In a study conducted in Israel, 103 children with ear infections were given herbal ear drops or drops containing pain-relieving medications. The herbal ear drops contained a variety of herbal extracts including calendula, St. John’s wort, mullein flower, and garlic. The researchers found that the combination of herbs in the ear drops were as effective as the medication ear drops in reducing the children’s ear pain

Preliminary laboratory studies also suggest that extracts of dried calendula petals inhibit the activity of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in test tubes. Calendula has not been studied in people with HIV, however, so it is not clear whether this herb is safe or effective for people with this condition.
Available Forms :
Fresh or dried calendula petals are available in tinctures, liquid extracts, infusions, ointments, and creams.
Calendula products should always be protected from light and moisture, and should not be used after three years of storage.
How to Take It

Use only topical and homeopathic preparations for children.
Calendula can be used externally in the form of creams and ointments in dosages of 2 to 5 g calendula per 100 g cream or ointment.
For homeopathic dosages follow instructions on product labeling or consult an experienced and licensed homeopath.
Recommended adult doses are as follows:
Infusion: 1 tsp dried florets in 8 oz water; steep 30 to 40 minutes; drink two to three cups per day
Fluid extract (1:1 in 40% alcohol): 0.5 to 1.0 mL three times per day
Tincture (1:5 in 90% alcohol): 2 to 4 mL three times per day
Ointment: 2 to 5 g crude drug in 100 g ointment

The use of herbs is a time-honored approach to strengthening the body and treating disease. Herbs, however, contain active substances that can trigger side effects and that can interact with other herbs, supplements, or medications. For these reasons, herbs should be taken with care, under the supervision of a practitioner knowledgeable in the field of botanical medicine.

Frequent skin contact may result in an allergic reaction to the herb.

Calendula is also known to affect the menstrual cycle and should not be used during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Possible Interactions
There are no known scientific reports of interactions between calendula and conventional medications.

Ayurvedic uses of Calendula:    An anti-inflammatory component flavonoids, triterpene saponins are found. The flowers contain calenduline, and oleanolic acid glycoside, sterol glycosides, a- and ß-amyrin, taraxasterol, y – taraxasterol, lupeol, brein, faradiol, arnidiol, erythrodiol, calenduladiol, coflodiol (ursadiol) and manilladiol.. They also contain Calendula also contains carotenoids. Investigations into anticancer and antiviral actions of calendula are continuing. There is evidence suggesting use of calendula for some viral infections
Medicinal propertie from Ayurvedic view
: It has stimulant, bitter, tonic, sudorific, febrifuge, carminative, anti-emetic and anthelmintic properties. Calendulas have been used to treat conjunctivitis, blepharitis, eczema, gastritis, minor burns including sunburns, warts, and minor injuries such as sprains and wounds. Calendula flowers have been considered beneficial in reducing inflammation, wound healing, and used as an antiseptic. Calendula has been used to treat a variety of skin diseases and has been seen effective in treatment of skin ulcerations and eczema.

If taken internally through a tea, it has been used for treatment of stomach ulcers, and inflammation. Calendula has been effective in treating juvenile acne and dry phthiriasis. It has also been used to treat cramps, coughs, and snake bites. Research continues into the healing properties of Calendula.

Other Uses:
The beautiful flowers were once used as a source of dye for fabrics. By using different mordants, a variety of yellows, oranges and browns could be obtained

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider




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Medicine in Food we eat

Borage from Project Gutenberg EBook of Culinar...Image via Wikipedia

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‘Let our foods be medicines and our medicines be food’ – the old aphorism first coined by Hippocrates is coming back into vogue. In an age where medicine has become a multi-billion dollar industry and the market is flooded with thousands of ever new permutations of various synthetic compounds that make it impossible to keep track, it may well be a good idea to simplify matters a bit. Even the natural remedy department is seeing an explosion of ever more pills and extracts which will do little but confuse the average consumer. Nobody knows what’s what anymore. Confronted with conflicting messages and a glut of magic pills the task of sorting the wheat from the chaff is not an easy one. Thus, it is essential to start with the basics and to educate oneself about health and nutrition.

The word health derives from the Anglo-Saxon root ‘hal’ meaning ‘whole’. Health is a state of wholeness, of balance and harmony between mind, body and soul. Disharmony and imbalance manifests as dis-ease. Thus, the first principle of healing is to restore balance. The three main factors responsible for that balance are: proper nutrition, exercise and relaxation.And he who maintens this balance keeps good health all along.
The average convenience diet barely contains enough nutrients to keep the system running, much less to keep it healthy. Refined carbohydrates, sugars and fats are the main ingredients, supplemented with gene manipulated, processed vegetables and meats, often with artificial flavors and preservatives added to the chemical concoction. Is it really that surprising that so many people suffer from degenerative diseases, allergies, food sensitivities, cancers and immune system deficiencies? To compensate the lack of nutrients in the normal diet many people are now on an expensive regime of vitamin and mineral supplements. Vitamins and minerals are extremely important to keep the body healthy and in general all essential nutrients can and should be obtained from a wholesome, well balanced diet. However, deficiencies can result in various ailments.

A balanced diet should supply all necessary vitamins and minerals, preferably obtained from natural, organic sources. Certain conditions can deplete vitamin and mineral levels in the body and it may become necessary to boost them with nutritional supplements. However, unfortunately vitamin pills don’t always live up to what they promise. If at all possible fresh pressed juices are the best way of obtaining nutrients from organic sources, facilitating easy absorption for the body).

Many foods and vegetables provide far more than essential nutrients, though. In fact, most can be used directly as healing agents. The distinction between staple foods, vegetables, spices, herbs and drugs are often rather arbitrary. Lets take a closer look at this scale of distinction:

Grains, (such as oats, barley, wheat and rice) and starchy root vegetables (such as potatoes, yams or cassavas) are sometimes called ‘the staff of life’. They should form the basis of a balanced diet, as they supply not only energy in the form of complex carbohydrates but also contain a large range of nutrients. They are rich in fiber, too, which is especially important for maintaining a healthy digestive system, vital for the process of eliminating toxins and keeping cholesterol levels low.

Then there are different kinds of vegetables. Some of these are root vegetables, such as carrots,radish and parsnips, others are leafy, such as spinach or cabbage. They supplement the staple foods and ensure a balanced intake of a wide range of nutrients. However, one should not let them dominate the diet completely, as too much of a good thing can be just too much: Fat soluble vitamins are stored in the body and can be damaging if built up to excessive amounts. Too much asparagus can damage the kidneys and too much spinach leeches the calcium from teeth and bones.

Next on the scale are the spices, which not only add flavor to a good meal, but also subtly insure that it can be digested comfortably. Most herbs commonly used in the kitchen are rich in volatile oils and thus stimulate the digestive juices. Their action is carminative and soothing. Additionally, many, kill worms and bacteria in the intestinal tract or add nutrients to the diet. In fact, most commonly used kitchen herbs are very useful medicinal herbs.
At the very far end of the scale, beyond these simple herbs and spices are the medicinal herbs, which don’t usually feature in the diet at all, but are generally only used as medicines. Most of these tend to have a tonic and restorative effect on the body. They are not fast acting magic bullets, but over time restore the bodily balance by toning the entire system. Beyond these are the toxic herbs, which, depending on the dosage, can either heal or harm. These are the plants that tend to be favored by the pharmaceutical industry as potential sources for their drugs, as they usually depend on one or more very definitive ‘active principles’, which can be isolated and synthesized with relative ease. In contrast to the gentler herbs, which act as toning restoratives, they tend to provoke a strong re-action from the body in response to the biochemical assault. Only experienced herbalists should attempt to use strong and potentially dangerous herbs in their practice. When such plant drugs are isolated and synthesized into chemical medicines the effect tends to become even stronger and oftentimes downright toxic as the herbs natural buffer substances (thought to be ‘inactive waste materials) are eliminated from the formula.

When faced with a subject as vast as herbal medicine, the number of different remedies available can be quite overwhelming. Thus, the simplest strategy is to start with herbs and spices that one is already well familiar with. There are dozens of simple home remedies that over time have proven to be extremely effective and safe,I therefore, try to include these types of remedies in most of my blogs for common diseases. Although they have almost slipped into the realm of ‘old wife’s tales’ and are forgotten by the general public, who tends to prefer the convenience of ‘modern’ processed chemical medicines, herbal pills or tinctures. This trend is supported by the ferocious advertising campaigns of the herb (and drug) companies, who find it more profitable to hype exotic, (thus expensive) and processed herbal remedies.

The truth is, that one rarely has to look beyond one’s own kitchen garden and spice cupboard to find all the remedies anybody could need to treat most common ailments. For more complicated conditions, such as heart disease, cancer, kidney disease and any other potentially life-threatening diseases one should never attempt to be one’s own doctor, but rather find a practitioner who is open towards integrating herbal remedies and nutritional therapies into his/her overall approach.

Herbal medicines and all home remedies one should always apply to mentain a good health all along one’s life through and this really gives very good result rather than taking modern chemical medicine for a very common day to day ailment and having various side effects which may cause afterwards serious desiases as mentioned above.

Most of the fruits,vegetables,herbs and spices that we eat daily as our food has healing power. Only we are to keep our eyes and ears open and learn a little bit about them and eat as per requrement.
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Herbs & Plants Herbs & Plants (Spices)


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Botanical Name : Cinnamomum aromaticum
Family: Lauraceae
Genus: Cinnamomum
Species: C. verum
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Laurales

Synonyms:Cinnamomum zeylanicum,Cinnamomum verum

Common Names:Cinnamon, “true cinnamon”, Ceylon cinnamon or Sri Lanka cinnamon,Cinnamomum cassia, called Chinese cassia or Chinese cinnamon.

Habitat :Cinnamon is native to Asia, it  is an evergreen tree originating in southern China, and widely cultivated there and elsewhere in southern and eastern Asia (India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam,Combodia & Sreelanka). It is one of several species of Cinnamomum used primarily for their aromatic bark, which is used as a spice. In the United States, Chinese cassia is often sold under the culinary name of “cinnamon”. The buds are also used as a spice, especially in India, and were once used by the ancient Romans.

The tree grows to 10–15 m tall, with greyish bark and hard, elongated leaves that are 10–15 cm long and have a decidedly reddish colour when young.The leaves are ovate-oblong in shape, 7–18 cm (2.75–7.1 inches) long. The flowers, which are arranged in panicles, have a greenish color, and have a distinct odor. The fruit is a purple 1-cm drupe containing a single seed.  click to see the pictures
Cinnamon is one of the oldest spices known on earth.
The use of cinnamon can be traced back to Egypt around 3000 B.C., where it was used as an embalming agent, to China around 2700 B.C., where it was used medicinally by herbalists. In traditional Asian medicine, cinnamon has long been used to treat blood pressure and poor blood circulation

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Cinnamon is also known by the names Sweet Wood, Cassia and Gui Zhi. The parts of this plant used medicinally are the dried inner bark of the shoots, and the oil distilled from the bark and leaves. Cinnamon is an ancient herbal medicine mentioned in Chinese texts as long ago as 4,000 years. Cinnamon was used in ancient Egypt for embalming. In ancient times, it was added to food to prevent spoiling. During the Bubonic Plague, sponges were soaked in cinnamon & cloves, and placed in sick rooms. Cinnamon was the most sought after spice during explorations of the 15th and 16th centuries. It has also been burned as an incense. The smell of Cinnamon is pleasant, stimulates the senses, yet calms the nerves. Its smell is reputed to attract customers to a place of business. Most Americans consider Cinnamon a simple flavoring, but in traditional Chinese medicine, it’s one of the oldest remedies, prescribed for everything from diarrhea and chills to influenza and parasitic worms. Cinnamon comes from the bark of a small Southeast Asian evergreen tree, and is available as an oil, extract, or dried powder. It’s closely related to Cassia (Cassia tora), and contains many of the same components, but the bark and oils from Cinnamon have a better flavor. Cinnamon has a broad range of historical uses in different cultures, including the treatment of diarrhea, rheumatism, and certain menstrual disorders. Traditionally, the bark was believed best for the torso, the twigs for the fingers and toes. Research has highlighted hypoglycemic properties, useful in diabetes. Cinnamon brandy is made by soaking crushed Cinnamon bark a “fortnight” in brandy. Chinese herbalists tell of older people, in their 70s and 80s, developing a cough accompanied by frequent spitting of whitish phlegm. A helpful remedy, they suggest, is chewing and swallowing a very small pinch of powdered cinnamon. This remedy can also help people with cold feet and hands, especially at night. Germany’s Commission E approves Cinnamon for appetite loss and indigestion. The primary chemical constituents of this herb include cinnamaldehyde, gum, tannin, mannitol, coumarins, and essential oils (aldehydes, eugenol, pinene). Cinnamon is predominantly used as a carminative addition to herbal prescriptions. It is used in flatulent dyspepsia, dyspepsia with nausea, intestinal colic and digestive atony associated with cold & debilitated conditions. It relieves nausea and vomiting, and, because of its mild astringency, it is particularly useful in infantile diarrhea. The cinnamaldehyde component is hypotensive and spasmolytic, and increases peripheral blood flow. The essential oil of this herb is a potent antibacterial, anti-fungal, and uterine stimulant. The various terpenoids found in the volatile oil are believed to account for Cinnamon’s medicinal effects. Test tube studies also show that Cinnamon can augment the action of insulin. However, use of Cinnamon to improve the action of insulin in people with diabetes has yet to be proven in clinical trials. Topical applications of Cinnamon include use as a hair rinse for dark hair, and as a toothpaste flavoring to freshen breath. As a wash, it prevents and cures fungal infections such as athletes foot. It is also used in massage oils. You can also place Cinnamon in sachets to repel moths. Its prolonged use is known to beautify the skin and promote a rosy complexion. The common name Cinnamon encompasses many varieties, including Cinnamomum cassia and Cinnamomum saigonicum, which are used interchangeably with.

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This well known spice is also a medicinal plant. The best cinnamon comes from Sri Lanka. In the wild, cinnamon trees can grow to 60ft tall, but when cultivated, they are kept cropped shorter so there is always a supply of new shoots. Young shoots are cut and the bark removed. The outer bark is peeled away, the inner bark is left to dry. It curls as it dries into the familiar cinnamon “quills”.

click to see the pictures

In traditional Asian medicine, cinnamon has long been used to treat blood pressure and poor blood circulation. Cinnamon even contains an antioxidant, glutathione. It has been used as a carminative (relieves wind in the digestive system), and to relieve nausea and vomiting.
It reduces muscle spasms and is slightly astringent, so is good for tummy upsets and painful periods.

Cinnamon encourages the digestive system to work efficiently and improves the appetite so is a good herb to use after a flu or other illness to aid convalescence. It is warming and improves circulation, so is good to take if you suffer cold hands and feet, or chilblains.

Recent research has shown that cinnamon is very effective in reducing blood sugar levels. People suffering late-onset diabetes (Type II), especially if it is mainly controlled by diet, are now being recommended to add a teaspoon of cinnamon to their daily diet. It is nice sprinkled on porridge in the mornings (and oats are good for lowering blood sugar too, so it is a good combination).

Therapeutic: Analgesic, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, carminative, digestive, emmenagogue, expectorant. germicide, sedative, stimulant, stomachic, styptic, vermifuge.
Internal: – Amenorrhea, candida, circulation (slow), colic, cough, diarrhea, exhaustion, flatulence, infection, intestinal parasites, stress and typhoid.
It is used to treat colds, sinus congestion, bronchitis, dyspepsia
high pitta, bleeding disorder.
External:– bites, colds, coughs, influenza, lice, rheumatism, scabies, tinea (athlete’s foot), toothache, warts & calluses.

Medicinal properties of cinnamon:
It acts on plasma, blood, muscles, marrow and nerves.
It affects circulatory, digestive, respiratory and urinary systems.
Cinnamon has been associated with the ability to prevent ulcers, destroy fungal infections, soothe indigestion, ward off urinary tract infections, and fight tooth decay and gum disease. The pharmaceutical industry currently uses cinnamon in toothpaste and mouthwash as a natural flavoring.

It is a stimulant, diaphoretic (increases perspiration), carminative (helps prevent gas formation), expectorant, diuretic (increases urine production), and painkiller.

As per Ayurveda:It is katu, sheeta veerya, laghu, beneficial in derabged kpha, expectorant, spermicidal, antidysentric and remover hoarseness of voice.

Parts used: Leaves and bark.

Therapeutic uses:
In the form of oil used externally in the treatment rheumatism, neuralgia, headache and toothache.
It is internally used in common gastro-intestinal symptoms such as dyspepsia, flatulence, diarrhoea, nausea vomiting; useful in menorrhagia, gonorrhoea, tuberculosis and enteric fever.

A must for cold days in autumn and winter
Ayurvedic Cinnamon Insoles not only warm your feet but also strengthens your immune system.
*Warm feet in winter
*Regulated foot temperature
*Stimulated blood circulation
*Distaunched heavy legs
*Smelly feet forever
*Calluses & painfully cracked heels

Fight old age Type II diabetes
To regulate blood sugar levels

Not to be worn in final stages of pregnancy.Due to a toxic component called coumarin, which can damage the liver, European health agencies have warned against consuming high amounts of cassia. Other possible toxins founds in the bark/powder are cinnamaldehyde and styren.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.