Alcohol Free Vitamin Rich Formulas
In this edition of the Wild Spirit Apothecary blog post we are continuing with the theme of detoxification. In Traditional Chinese Medicine Springtime corresponds to the liver and gallbladder organs. The liver in particular is responsible for the smooth flowing of Qi (energy) throughout the entire body, so during this season it is especially important to focus on building our liver Qi. When liver Qi becomes stagnant many different symptoms can present themselves such as having a short-temper, hormone imbalances, digestive disturbances, fluid retention, and much more. To help build a strong and happy liver we like utilizing herbs that tone and help clear impurities that may have accumulated in our bodies throughout the Winter. Tonics help restore and invigorate the systems in our body, which is why Spring tonics are an important addition to your daily routine. Just as we like to Spring clean our homes during this time of year, we also like to Spring clean our bodies!
So what herbs are tonics?
As it turns out many of the herbs that naturally grow this time of year are the herbs that we use to tone the body. Some examples found in the Pacific North West include….
- Dandelion, that’s right the dandelion that grows in your backyard! The root is a powerful liver detox herb that promotes the flow of bile and as a result relieves constipation while cleansing the liver of toxins. Dandelion leaves are a strong diuretic that also rebalance minerals through the kidneys.
- Cleavers, a strong lymphatic herb that helps move and clear lymph throughout the body and can relieve fluid retention as well as support immunity.
- Stinging Nettle, an herb that grows prolifically around here and one of our favourite Spring herbs to highlight!
A note about Nettles
While foraging in the wild woods on Texada we found the most stunning field of Stinging Nettles and stopped in our tracks to harvest. Every year I go to Texada with my family to harvest Nettles, it's especially magical because my youngest son is named Nettle. This was his first year really enjoying harvesting with us. Nettles are full of nutrients, vitamins and are also great at detoxifying the system with its diuretic properties. Nettle is mainly used internally as a tea, steamed or fried and then added to meals, or in a tincture or oxymel. Nettle however has been traditionally used topically to treat arthritis by gently whipping your body with it in the area causing pain. By intentionally stinging your body it causes a localized inflammation, bringing in fresh blood and immune cells to heal the area. It's quite a sensation and I do recommend a little Nettle sting for everyone to help move things around and get that blood circulation happening.
If you’re not into the sting, here are some other benefits to incorporating Nettles into your diet this Spring. Nettles are high in protein, vitamins, and minerals making them an excellent nutritive tonic. They work on mucous membranes in the body making them a great herb to relieve seasonal allergies and they also help the liver build blood proteins which tone blood vessels reducing fluid retention and improving low blood pressure. Nettle is also a restorative herb that brings back function to tissues that have been under-active such as kidneys, thyroid, menstruation, hormones, and much more! What’s not to love about Nettles?
In honour of this amazing plant we have created three products with our wild-harvested nettles to get you started on your Spring detox. We hope you love them as much as we do!
Immune-boost Nettle Oxymel
This oxymel is chock-full of supportive herbs! Echinacea and Elderberries are anti-viral and support your immune system to fight off colds and flus while Alfalfa and Nettle support digestion and are healthy tonics full of nutrients. This formula is alcohol-free and safe for the whole family!
Ingredients: Nettle, alfalfa, cloves, echinacea, ginger, elderberry, honey, ACV.
Bitter Nettle Oxymel
Nettle and alfalfa are paired together in this formula to give you a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals while the dandelion and burdock roots encourage liver detoxification and bile flow. This formula also includes oatstraw, which is a gentle herb to soothe the nervous system and reduce anxiety. This is a great formula for anyone who might be feeling a little burnt out and could use a little boost.
Ingredients: Nettle, alfalfa, dandelion root, oat straw, licorice root, burdock, lemon zest, honey, ACV.
Balance Nettle Oxymel
A combination of herbs to help strengthen and tone your adrenal glands, and bring balance to your hormones. The seasonal spring plant, Nettles, are known for their strength and power boasting dense nutrients, high in minerals and protein. This formula is especially wonderful for women as it helps to regulate your menstrual cycle, brings balance to your emotions, and is high in iron. Burdock, Yellow Dock, and Licorice all help your digestion and support your liver, which is often the underlying root cause of hormone imbalance.
Alcohol-Free Formula. Not recommended for children.