Pregnancy is a very special time. If chosen wisely herbs can give tremendous support throughout the entire process. However, due to the vulnerability and sensitivity of the unborn child it is especially important to make sure that the herbs you are using are safe. (This also applies during the time of breast-feeding as all substances ingested by the mother are processed and passed on with the mother's milk). Many herbs may be useful during the latter stages of pregnancy or during labour, but could be dangerous during the first few months. Inform yourself - don't risk regret.
CLOVES - Organic
History and Folklore
In Asia Cloves are known as 'Flowers of the Gods'. Although native to the Spice Islands and the Philippines, Cloves have long been known and traded in the West. Until the 16th century the Arabs were the chief importers and traders of spices from the East. But once Portuguese explorers discovered the true origin of precious, exotic spices, wars were waged over the dominion of the spice islands - the tropical climate produced an abundance of wonderful exotic spices and Europeans were crazy for them: Cloves, Nutmeg and Cinnamon were among the most precious substances of commerce in those days, and a man's fortune could be made or lost depending on the outcome of their adventures in the East. The name 'Cloves' actually derives from the Latin 'clavus', meaning 'little nail', which survives in the Dutch name 'Kruidnagel' - Herbnail. In Asia, garlands of Clove flowers are placed around children's necks for protection. It keeps evil spirits away and protects against nasty gossip. In Indonesia, one of the traditional growing areas, Cloves feature predominantly as a flavouring agent for cigarettes, rather than a spice. They are also commonly used as an incense ingredient. The Chinese not only use it as an ingredient in their famous 5 spice mixture, but also as medicine. In western cuisines it is mostly associated with Christmas baking, mulled wine and apple spice. When the plague raged through Europe, Cloves were in great demand as they were believed to offer protection against the deadly disease. Their anti-septic properties probably indeed saved quite a few souls. Today, Cloves are mostly known for their insect repellent properties and their usefulness as a local anaesthetic, particularly in the treatment of toothache.
The highly aromatic clove is best known as an analgesic for minor dental trouble. Toothache and gum infections can be soothed by chewing on a clove, though the taste is quite overpowering. Added to food it aids digestion and acts as a warming, stimulating carminative, that allies nausea and flatulence. It is a powerful antiseptic and antifungal agent, though the oil is more powerful in this regard. Cloves make a good addition for teas for colds, especially if there is a respiratory component, such as bronchitis or phthisis. The oil is used in rubefacients for rheumatic aches and pains.
The scent is invigorating and punchy and can be used to boost energy levels or to add extra potency to incense blends or ritual cups. Beware though, of its aphrodisiac powers! It is commonly used in love philtres and potions or carried in the pocket to attract a lover. Cloves offer protection and ward off evil spirits and jealousy. They also make a very potent ritual cleanse. Sometimes they are used for prosperity magic.
Plants nourish and feed us, add spice to our life, bestow health and beauty, scent and colour and brighten our days. They mediate love, hope and gratitude; they clothe and cleanse us, they heal and soothe our bodies, minds and souls. They touch every aspect of our existence, from our daily sustenance to the air we breathe, to the keys to other dimensions. They are the alchemists that turn sunlight into the green force of life, continuously revolving, restoring, rebirthing through the cycles of time. They truly are the greatest gift of nature, yet also the one we most take for granted.
Star Child's range of botanicals derives from many regions and traditions of the world. We supply only the best quality herbs, using organically grown and sustainably harvested sources if available. The greater the demand for organic products the more readily they will become available. Your choice to buy and our commitment to supply organic herbs is part of the driving force that sows the seeds for a greener, healthier future.
There are dozens of ways in which herbs can be used. Many culinary herbs not only impart a great flavour but also have subtle effect on the digestive process. Other herbs are more medicinal than culinary and can be used as remedies, based on the wisdom of age old traditional plant knowledge. For more detailed information on the different types of preparations that can be made with herbs, please refer to the BOTANICALS USAGE section.
We support the notion of taking responsibility for one's own well being and thus strive to make all herbs available for use at your own discretion. It should be noted however, that not all herbs are safe to use in all circumstances. Special cautions may apply when suffering from certain medical conditions, when taking synthetic prescription drugs and during pregnancy. Research and familiarize yourself with any herb you intend to use and make sure you are aware of all special cautions that may apply. The information given here is based on thousands of years of traditional use. It is intended for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace a visit to a medical professional where this is necessary.
If symptoms persist or re-occur, or if you are suffering from a serious medical condition, or if you are presently taking prescription drugs, we recommend that you consult a qualified doctor or practitioner before attempting to help yourself. Look for a practitioner/doctor who you can trust and who is prepared to explore natural health alternatives with you.
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