Why are natural health remedies overlooked while prescriptions for harmful substances, with side effects that read like an encyclopaedia or horror story, are plentiful? Over 100,000 people die every year from the side effects of drugs prescribed by doctors.
Clearly, it is money. The powerful pharmaceutical industry has no interest in natural remedies that it cannot control - and cannot patent - and wilfully exerts pressure to restrict the use of natural products (with no side effects).
Plants have been used for medicinal purposes since time immemorial. Plant medicine, or botanical medicine, refers to the use of a plant's seeds, berries, roots, leaves, bark, or flowers for medicinal purposes.
Long practiced outside conventional medicine it has become more mainstream as up-to-date analysis and research shows the real value in the treatment and prevention of a vast number of ills. In the scramble for progress through chemistry, we have forgotten that the curative power of plants is far broader that our current research has catalogued.
Many animals eat certain types of foliage when they are sick that they wouldn't ordinarily eat as food, and for thousands of years indigenous people have extensively used rainforest plants for their health needs.
Plants contain enormous numbers of genes and mixtures of hundreds if not thousands of chemicals. This makes rainforest species an excellent reservoir of medicines - the ultimate chemical laboratory - with each species having various chemical defences to ensure survival in the harsh world of natural selection.
Sadly, as their homelands continue to be invaded and destroyed, rainforest peoples and their cultures are disappearing. When these indigenous people are lost forever, gone too will be centuries of accumulated empirical knowledge of the medicinal value of plant species in the rainforest.
At Highland Heritage, we are blessed with a wide range of medicinal plants that can treat most ailments and provide relief from many others - at no cost and with no side effects.
Need toothpaste free from fluoride - a rat poison? When the bark of the Red Targua tree is cut, the tree exudes a blood-red resinous sap. This astringent and antiseptic sap was popular in colonial times as a toothpaste and is also used to treat gum diseases such as pyorrhoea.
Suffer from dandruff? The Wild Tobacco Tree can be used to make a hair rinse to treat dandruff, and as a gargle to soothe sore and inflamed throats. For a hair conditioner we have Aloe Vera.
Our herbal first-aid is the Tuete plant which grows all around our centre and has a long history as such in Costa Rica. Campesinos have traditionally used it to treat wounds and bruises. Fresh leaves are simply masticated and applied directly to the wounded area. An infusion is and effective natural laxative.
Much like Aloe Vera, the Mozote de Caballo plant soothes the stomach and intestinal lining. It has a mucilaginous substance used to treat gastritis, ulcers, kidney problems, colds and flu.
Vervain is a small plant that grows in profusion around our centre. An infusion has remarkable healing powers and is well known as a treatment for fevers, kidney and liver problems, jaundice and nervous disorders (it has nervione - an agent that has a calming and soothing effect on the nerves).
For Sarsaparilla you need to go a little way into our primary rainforest - it is only found in the rainforest. Indigenous tribes have used sarsaparilla to treat a variety of illnesses. It has been successful in treating skin problems such as psoriasis and eczema, as a blood purifier for anaemia, energy depletion and acidosis. Traditionally it has been used to treat impotence, liver problems, stress, rheumatism, gout, epilepsy, nervous disorders, diabetes and stomach problems.
After a long hike to our waterfalls, a tincture of the fresh leaves and flowers of the tiny arnica plant (looks like a dandelion) works well to treat sore muscles as well as strains and sprains.
Aloe Vera is one of the most important medicinal plants and often called the 'potted physician' since it can be used to treat a wide range of health problems. The gelatin inside the leaf is used to alleviate skin problems such as burns, sunburn, insect bites, cuts, bruises, eczema, psoriasis, fungal infections and acne. 'Cancer Science' magazine states that it is 'widely preventative or suppressive against various human cancers'.
Cola de Caballo has been used worldwide as a diuretic to treat kidney and bladder problems. It is said - though we cannot verify it - to prevent hair loss and to strengthen teeth, bones and skin - the leaves having high concentrations of calcium and silica.
And, we could go ON AND ON!
To take a simple examples, a bottle of locally bought Clairol Herbal Essences, which kind-of implies that it might be 'naturally good', contains the following unimaginable chemicals – just to wash your hair!?
Sodium laureth sulfate – sodium lauryl sulfate – cocamidopropyl betaiune – fragrance – cocamide mea – sodium chloride – sodium benzoate – tetrasodium ethylenediamine tetra-acetic acid – polyethylene glycol 60 almond glycerides – guar hydroxpropyltrimonium chloride – linoeamidopropyl PG-dimonium chloride phosphate – citric acid – citrus nobilis peel oil – cymbopogon schoenanthus oil – elaeis guieensis oil – ascorbyl glucoside – orange 4 – methychloroisothiazolinone – methylidothhiazolinone – and, of course, water!
As you will have seen above, shampoo at The Place that Time Forgot is totally and wholly natural and doesn't do unimaginable things to your hair like the above just has to do!
Many people faced with problems that they feel are insurmountable turn to therapies and other programs at clinics, with a gallimaufry of practitioners, much of which proves to be worthless within a short space of time – but it's a cash cow.
Others who seek guidance or help with difficulties such as alcohol and substance abuse, marital relations, depression, anxiety, obesity, feelings of inadequacy, anger, etc., rarely know where to turn. You can, in a moment of weakness, too easily give your credit card number over the phone to someone chain-smoking in a basement flat in Stepney, and hope to obtain inspirational 'guidance' from them! But, let's get real, if you simply want a bit of meaningless fun, then fine.
For those who seek revitalisation (new life and vitality), an answer to a problem, or an insight into their future, and have sought other ways which have failed, the inspired help that has emanated from Chapel-in-the-Clouds coupled with the magnetic presentiment and aura surrounding the chapel can have a surprising and very positive impact and influence.
If you are in a troubled situation and need tranquility in your life, here you can develop a sense of wellbeing, with guidance for both today's problems and for the future.
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