How to Use Aloe and Cactus to Heal Wounds and Diabetes

I am like the dad in the movie, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” except instead of Windex I often yell, “Put some salve on it!”  It is my go-to for everything.  My daughter and I make a fine pain salve.  It literally heals everything from nerve pain to sun burn.  I have an intense skin salve that heals irritated and damaged skin…unless the patient keeps scratching!

Doug gets some pretty wicked patches of eczema in the winter.  As if it weren’t dry enough here in Colorado, winters are filled with forced hot air from furnaces that further leave our throats parched and skin in shambles if we don’t moisturize every day (with our lotion, of course). http://whitewolfherbs.com

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Here it is July and one patch on Doug’s leg is not going away.  “Did you put salve on it?” I holler from the next room.  “Yes” is always the response but I know he is not applying it as much as he needs.  And it itches, so he scratches.

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It now looks like I threw a kettle of boiling water on his leg now.  (I didn’t.)  The heat was gently rising from it yesterday.  So, I took over treatment.  Thank goodness I am an herbalist.  I gave him a shot glass of infection killing herbal extract and set to work cutting two pieces of aloe open long ways.

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After about ten minutes the heat was gone from his leg and the gel was saturating into the wounded skin.  I cut off the end of a sock and had him wear the tube around his leg.  He put salve on it this morning.  I will continue working on it and he should be healed in no time.

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The same gel that is found in aloe vera is found in some cacti, particularly prickly pear, which is very common around these parts.  Our new farm that we are moving to has a bit of it.  I dream of prickly pear margaritas in the summer on the porch watching the sun set behind the mountains.  (It’s medicinal, folks.)  We had so much rain this year that the cacti flowered majestically and there will surely be fruit now to juice.

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Nopales are found in many grocery stores.  They are the fronds of de-spiked prickly pear used in many Mexican dishes.  Succulents and cacti heal themselves by sealing the wounded end with their own gel.  That gel is what we are using to heal wounds.  The gel inside prickly pear and aloe vera is anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-biotic, anti-fungal, anti-parasitic, and demulcent (meaning gelatinous and soothing).  Scrape the gel from the pods and use.  Careful with store bought aloe vera gel, it is often full of chemicals.

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Aloe Vera and Prickly Pear have another super power.  That same gel helps stabilize blood sugars and offers pancreatic support.  Simply place a six inch piece cut in half into a quart jar.  (Please use gloves if you are harvesting prickly pear.  Took me a month to get all those thorns out of my hand!)  Add a cinnamon stick, 3 bay leaves, the peel of an organic orange, a 1 inch knob of ginger, and a 1/2 inch knob of turmeric.  1 Tablespoon of Ginseng will really help because it is an adaptogen (helps heal organs).  It is, however, endangered and mighty expensive.

Now fill this concoction with vodka or rum.  Sit it in the window for a week and then place in a cupboard or somewhere you won’t forget for another three weeks.  I put mine out in the full moon.  It does make a difference.  Do not strain it out.  Let it keep brewing.  The dose for diabetes is 1 teaspoon a day.  One can check their blood sugar, take a teaspoon of medicine, then check it again in 15 minutes.  It works that fast!  (I have to do the obligatory statement of I am not a doctor, stay on your medicines, talk to your doctor…yadiyadiya.) I have two more recipes for Diabetes and a miracle wound healer in my book, The Homesteader’s Pharmacy

An aloe vera plant in the window is good practice for any homesteader and a prickly pear in the yard is lucky…unless you step on it.

The Kitchen Herbalist

“Oh no…” I said when I saw my husband.  He was coming down with the virus that has kept me doling out medicine from my shop all hours for the past six weeks.  I went over to retrieve my medicine bag, that I always keep on me, and noticed I had somehow left it at the shop.

I considered driving back to Elizabeth but then it occurred to me that there is a whole lot of medicine in the kitchen.  Not made up into sparkling colors of extracts and such but in spice jars.

I pulled out every herb I knew to be anti-viral, anti-biotic, and started cooking.

1 teaspoon of thyme

1 teaspoon of oregano

1 teaspoon of basil

a shake of turmeric

a shake of chipotle

slivers of fresh ginger

a cinnamon stick

I started to pour honey over it (1 or 2 parts honey to the herbs) and starting running out after a tablespoon.

1 Tablespoon of maple syrup and 1 Tablespoon of molasses followed

Roughly, I didn’t measure.  That is the nice thing about herbalism and cooking, you can wing it.  A bit more honey, maybe there are more things in your cupboard…cumin, rosemary, garlic, it all works.

Simmer very lightly over low to medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes until well combined and infused.  Pour half into a mug and pour hot water over it.  Lemon or orange slices can go into the mug.  It doesn’t sound very good but the mixture of sweet and spice in a mug of hot water when you are just going under the weather tastes mighty fine and it will kick that cold quickly!  Your artillery is right in front of you.

Serves 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trusting Plant Medicine

 

IMG_1987I have a rather unique profession.  A calling, if you will.  I have a knowledge that used to be well known.  There were and always will be the medicine people that know intimately the plants and make most of the medicine for the tribe and community.  However, everyone ought to have some basic knowledge.  The empowering feeling of knowing how to break a fever in minutes or to quickly help a sprained ankle is priceless.  Even more empowering to know how to kill strep in twenty-four hours or to help a cat with a urinary tract infection or a child with a severe burn or….

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There is a lot of fear mongering out there regarding holistic health and herbs.  Don’t take this with that (most of it fallacy, the medical community has no idea what the herbs do; it’s not their fault, they aren’t taught herbalism), herbs that cause thyroid failure (are you kidding me?  Salad causes thyroid issues?!), and then of course there are the folks that come in to my shop to tell me about the ten alternative doctors that have been mysteriously killed off over the past year.  They were developing cancer cures.

With all due respect, there are thousands of cancer cures out there in the form of plants.  Any herbalist worth her tincture bottles knows this.  There is nothing that needs to be reformulated, nothing that needs to be created, it’s all done.  I hear things like (oh, I used to say this too), God created people to discover remedies for ailments.  May I respectfully call BS on this one too.  The Creator doesn’t need us to “fix” anything.  It is perfect as it is.  If you knew all the things I’ve seen healed by plants you would be forever a gardener of medicinal plants.

So, how come folks don’t turn to herbs?  Why don’t they think about herbal cures first?  I convinced a friend to come see me instead of heading to urgent care for a virus.  I could hear the shock from her friends through the facebook screen.  These viruses are easily handled with herbs.  But, I am a rarity.  There are not a lot of people that do what I do.  In fact many herbalists I know will simply send people to the doctor.  The fear mongering again.  The herbs at the store contain little to no medicine.  But there are good medicine people out there.  They know what you need.  They know what to take.  They know the current viruses, what’s going around, what interacts, what works for what.  They know.  There are not enough of them.  And some folks would just rather have someone else do it.  And that is alright too.

My shop is a special place.  A mixture of cedar, sage, sweetgrass, and tobacco wafts lightly in the air.  The medicines glow and show off in the window.  Teas long to be brewed.  A sense of calm and peace will overwhelm you as you walk in.  Spiritual, emotional, and physical healing is at one’s fingertips as they enter.  The herbalist is not the healer.  The plants are.  You have every resource at your fingertips.

I ship medicines internationally and all over the country.  Just contact me and tell me what you need.  I don’t just make medicines.  A huge part of my mission is to train more herbalists.  I have three spots left in my master certified herbalist course starting this Sunday.  I have a hundred dollar correspondence course that is very comprehensive and filled with knowledge on how to help anything and anyone.  It’s already in you.

Plant medicine was here before we were.  In the Cherokee stories, the plants held a council and decided to help the humans.  And so they still do.  How lucky we are.

White Wolf Medicine

http://whitewolfherbs.com

796 East Kiowa Ave, Elizabeth, CO 80107 (P.O. Box 2012)

303-617-3370

Wildflower@sacredowlschool.com