Our ancestors who knew anything about anything were called healers and usually there was one in each tribe. A healer passed on his or her information from generation to generation. As you can imagine, in the beginning it literally was trial and error and, of course, they did get it wrong, but it was only by this process that future generations benefited from their success.
Most healers used plant-based medicines in the form of poultices/plasters, teas, infusions, and decoctions; all were simply to make.
Plasters were mixed in exactly the same way as poultices, but because they frequently called for herbs that could irritate the skin, they were folded in cloth before they were placed on the body. A poultice was made from dried or powdered herbs which were mixed with water, using adding a good amount of oatmeal or flour to thicken and bind it all together. Probably about two ounces of the particular herb with about twenty ounces of the thickener with water to make the paste, the mixture was always placed directly onto the skin and covered with a warm cloth.
Teas were made by dropping an ounce of dried herbs into a pint of boiling water for a couple of minutes, then straining the liquid and using when needed. The infusions on the other hand even though they used the same amount of herbs and boiling water it was left to simmer for about fifteen minutes, sometimes a little longer.
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I’m Nina Bagnall, author of various books for women, and a firm believer in natural alternatives for healing mind, body, and soul. Our bodies are not only unique but are most definitely a miracle to be proud of.
Born and raised in Staffordshire, England, educated at a private convent school.
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