Herbs are so much part of our everyday lives we probably don’t realise how much we use them. Equally, we don’t realise how much they can help us so we wanted to give you more information on these valuable plants.
Herbal medicine is ancient wisdom that has been used throughout the world over centuries. Herbal preparations are made directly from the plant, and use different parts from leaves, flowers, seeds, rhizomes through to roots. Depending on the herb they can come in tincture, paste, tablets or teas.
Our everyday use of herbs includes
Like all medicine, herbs do require specialist knowledge to ensure they are used correctly. We are providing you with an overview of the more commonly known herbs. Our blog will identify the traditional associations relating to each herb. EFSA do not issue any supported claims for herbs.
We are all familiar with sage, it is a regular herb used within our cooking. You may well have sage growing in your garden. Sage is traditionally associated with women’s menstrual cycle, in particular the menopause.
Today we are lucky to have so much information available to us. However, at times this can be daunting, the Menopause has been subject of much publicity in recent times. This has left many women anxious and concerned about the menopause.
In its simplest terms the menopause is simply the ceasing of your menstrual cycle. In most cases there is a transitional period referred to as the peri-menopause when symptoms may appear or your cycle may change becoming heavier, lighter, longer or shorter. There may be variations in frequency too.
In recent months there has been much more discussion about the emotional side of the menopause and the potential for anxiety, loss of confidence and mood swings alongside the hot flushes, night sweats and aching muscles.
Each woman has a different experience and the age range for menopause starting can be as wide as mid-thirties to sixty years. Most women will experience the menopause in their 50’s but each experience will be totally different.
One of the most inconvenient symptoms is the hot flushes. Sage is, in our experience, a good solution for many women. Our good friends at A.Vogel state that 80% of women experience hot flushes and/or night sweats.
These can range from a slight skin glow to a full on body soak. I have witnessed a patient have a hot flush that left her wringing out her clothes and tipping water out of her shoes. Most people do not get these extreme symptoms.
How can I help myself?
I have been advising women on their menopause for many years and these are my guidelines:
- Reduce the stress in your life. Stress only exaggerates any health condition.
- Water, water, water. If you are getting drenched on a regular basis then you need to replace that water. Regular readers will already be aware of the importance we place on staying well hydrated. Our bodies function to their best with good hydration.
- Sugar, chocolate, coffee, tea, alcohol, chilli and spices can all stimulate an already overactive system. While you are transitioning through the menopause go for a more vegetable based, less stimulating diet. Consuming lots of stimulating foods will just exacerbate your symptoms further.
- Get regular exercise. Staying fit helps us all maintain better levels of health. Exercise is also a great stress reliever.
- Get into a regular sleep pattern. Your body is going through changes, it needs its energy to deal with those changes. Anyone who has had a bad night’s sleep knows the impact it can make, so make sure you read our blogs on good sleep habits.
Ways to use Sage
Obviously, you can use it in cooking to flavour your food. The most convenient form is tablets or tincture because you can then be sure of getting a defined dose. A.Vogel offer sage in both tincture and tablets so the choice is yours.
A.Vogel get many positive comments from women saying that the sage products have made a significant difference to their flushes.
Other options for menopause support include:
Do not take if you have an allergy to any ingredient. It is not recommended to take sage whilst pregnant or breast feeding.
This is the second entry in our herb series and we hope you will continue to enjoy finding out more about these varied and valuable additions to our health care.