Just in time for Christmas, I’ve made a list of some of my very favorite herbal (and natural living) resources. These would make lovely Christmas gifts for naturally-minded family members… or to add to your own wish list!
1: Herbal Drugstore by White and Foster
If I could only choose one herbal book, it would be the Herbal Drugstore. Why? Because it’s thorough, well-written, and laid out in such a user-friendly format. I turn to it regularly to find the best treatment for my daughter’s ear infection, natural remedies for skin problems, or to see if astragalus is safe during pregnancy. Herbal Drugstore has staved off several visits to the doctor and a regular pharmacy (as well as helped me recognize when a visit is necessary immediately.)
I think it’s an exceptionally good resource for those who are just getting into herbs because it’s written by a team of doctors. In addition to the most effective herbs for each ailment, they also list the pharmaceutical drugs commonly prescribed and whether or not they’re as safe or effective as the herbal counterparts.
2: 10 Essential Herbs by Lalitha Thomas
This is the one book on this list that I don’t own. My sister-in-law Amber said it’s her very favorite book on herbs. I just borrowed her copy and can already see why. I have learned so much just in the first couple of chapters!
My favorite thing about the book is that Lalitha doesn’t overwhelm you with fifty new herbs. She just takes the ten herbs that she thinks are most essential for everyday life and shares in-depth uses for them. Most of the herbs are ones that you probably already use regularly. Her first “essential herb” is cayenne.
Did you know that when cayenne is heated it can lead to stomach problems, but dried non-heated cayenne can help stomach problems? (Plus cayenne helps circulation, stops bleeding wounds, helps vision problems, kills parasites, works as a carrier to make other herbs work better, and much more!)
Order now from Amazon!
3: Food – Your Miracle Medicine by Jean Carper
“Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food,” wrote Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine.
After combing through over 10,000 studies on food, Jean Carper concludes: food is a miracle medicine. She pulls from these studies and highlights foods that studies show help combat disease. For example
- According to studies, an ounce of fatty fish a day reduces your chance of heart disease by 50%
- Garlic and onions contain over 30 different carcinogen-fighting properties
4. Mommy Diagnostics by Shonda Parker
Written by a mom to moms, Shonda’s book is practical field-guide, written from a distinctly Christian perspective. Shonda urges moms to be proactive in their child’s health and to use herbs as the first line of defense to health. Mommy Diagnostics is filled with practical suggestions for diagnosing and treating minor illnesses, but the thing I love most about her book is the way she views sickenss (and herbs) from a Biblical worldview.
As Shonda points out, sin brought sickness and death into the world and no amount of herbs is gonna let you escape the curse of death. But God has give us such a wonderful treasure-trove of resources in His creation. Exploring the world of herbs can not only increase our health, but should make us worship our Creator!
5. Nutritional Herbology by Mark Pederson
After reading glowing reviews of this book on the Bulk Herb Store’s site, I could not wait to read it. I have to admit though, when I first opened up Nutritional Herbology I was overwhelmed and let it gather dust for months. It’s not been until the last few months that I’ve begun to appreciate it’s value.
Have you ever wondered what herbs are good if you’re lacking calcium or iron? This book takes you beyond the basics of what herb is good for what problem and analyzes the properties of the herbs in detail. For each herb, Mark lists the nutritional properties as well as how it has traditionally been used to help various maladies. This a great resource for those who wish to get a better understanding of herb!
Well, there’s my five top herbal books, but I just had to mention a couple other favorite resources:
It’s not just a book, but Shoshanna Easling’s “Making Babies” DVD series is an excellent series for pregnant or nursing moms (or those who hope to be someday!) Shoshanna’s enthusiasm and knowledge make listening (and learning) an delight.
I hesitate to recommend a book by a non-Christian feminist, but Taking Charge of Your Fertility taught me so much about how a woman’s body works and made me stand in awe of God’s incredible wisdom in His design. It answered so many questions I’ve had. I really think that many of the things she talks about used to be passed down from mother to daughter but have been lost as we’ve become more and more dependent on doctors to just tell us what’s going on. (And I don’t think that’s just the doctors fault!)
[Full disclosure: links to products in this post are my referral links.]
Now it’s your turn. What are your favorite books on herbs and natural living?