When I first became interesting in natural healing I used echinacea when I became ill. I guess in a way it is a main stream herb, and everyone knows that it is the herb to use when sick. I used to purchase Dr. Vogel's Echinaforce when I lived in Europe. I still use echinacea, but I have since then discovered many other herbs to use as well.
I found this echinacea spray mist recipe in a book I received as a gift a few years ago. According to the authors, this recipe 'provides therapeutic relief from sore throat and upper respiratory distress". The book, American Indian Healing Arts by E. Barrie Kavasch and Karen Baarr, is very fascinating and I found many interesting facts about how herbs were used before modern medicine. For example, echinacea has a long history of healing use among many tribes. Plains Indians ate the whole plant, especially the roots, as a vegetable. The Sioux chewed the roots to treat sore throats, toothache, and stomach problems. They also made the roots into poultices for snake bites and other infections. The Comanche also chewed the roots to treat toothache and sore throats. The dried herbal parts were also burned and inhaled the smoky essence to relieve depression, head aches, and to treat congestion and respiratory disorders.
Why not share the gift of healing this holiday season? A bottle of Echinacea Prairie Spray Mist and/or the tincture make great gifts. Use nice bottles and add it to a gift basket.
1 teaspoon echinacea root tincture
1 teaspoon raw honey
2 ounces mineral or spring water
Combine ingredients in a spray bottle and shake well to mix. Spray in mouth or throat. Keep refrigerated.
7 1/2 ounces dried or 11 ounces fresh finely chopped echinacea roots.
1 quart of vodka with 35-40 % alcohol content
Combine ingredients in a large, sterile jar and cover. Shake vigorously for 1-2 minutes. Store in a dark, cool place for two weeks. Shake the mixture daily.
Pour mixture through a fine cheesecloth, or a filter, squeezing all the liquid from the roots. Discard the roots and pour the fresh tincture into dark glass bottles. Label and date the bottles.
For a more gentle but still immune stimulant tincture, use the same amount of the above ground herbal parts of the echinacea, including the flowers.
To use the tincture:
Take 1/2 teaspoon in water or hot tea, one to three times a day as needed. Don't take it daily for more than seven days.
Add the tincture to the Spray mist above.
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