© 2017 Mantra Yoga + Health

Herbs and Spices to Soothe Winter Blues, Naturally

 MANTRA Wellness

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Instagram: @mantramagazine
 

Changing seasons usher in more than just cold weather and dorky sweaters; you might find yourself combating funky moods, restlessness, insomnia, low-energy and immune deficiencies. Here are our favorite herbs for tea, oil diffusions and topical treatments to soothe the winter blues.

Apply 
 

Apply these herbs topically in the form of gel, cream and infused oils to alleviate muscle pain, heal minor wounds and relieve tension:
 

  • Arnica montana is a potent herb for combating aches, pains, bruises and inflammation. Our favorite application of arnica is in Boiron’s topical gel, which is odorless, oil-free and dries instantly, leaving zero trace residue.

  • Calendula contains antibacterial properties, making it extremely useful as a cream to heal cuts, burns, chafing and other minor wounds.

  • Rosemary and peppermint are antispasmodics that work wonders for relaxing restless muscles. Apply topically as infused oils or body salves, both of which you can make at home.

Diffuse 
 

Diffuse a few drops of these essential oils 35 minutes before bedtime:
 

  • Frankincense balances and calms emotions and supports the body’s natural response to healing.

  • Cedarwood encourages healthy function of the pineal gland, which releases the body’s natural sleep hormone, melatonin.

  • Roman chamomile soothes restlessness and anxiousness.

  • Lavender helps eliminate nervous tension and treats respiratory problems.
     

Drink 
 

Crafting the perfect cup of tea before bed: a combo of passionflower, valerian and hops can ease restlessness, increase sleep quality and alleviate insomnia.

  • Valerian is beneficial for combating insomnia and restlessness, calming anxiety and frazzled nerves. Side benefits include lowering blood pressure, easing menstrual pain and bolstering stress management.

  • Passionflower improves your quality of sleep, reduces the effects of menopause and inflammation, and addresses ADHD symptoms.

  • Hops contain natural sedative properties. They can be very bitter, so consider adding a teaspoon of agave to your cup.

 

Throw these herbs & spices in your morning smoothie to boost energy & immunity:

  • Maca root boosts energy levels, is rich in nutrients and has a higher calcium level than milk. It mindfully sustains your energy level rather than the sharp dropoff effect of coffee.

  • Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin, which improves skin health, mental cognition and menstrual pain, reduces inflammation, aids in the treatment of depression and protects against cancer. Turmeric is best absorbed when paired with black pepper, a great combo in a booster juice or smoothie.

  • Ginger is your best friend the morning after... decadent dessert! This superpower plant aids in digestion and immunity, and helps prevent the common cold with its antiviral properties.

  • Chlorella is a great source of chlorophyll, iron, magnesium and amino acids. It’s also a well- known detoxifying supplement, able to bind to heavy metals and unwanted chemicals in the body. 

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