I'm shocked by the decline in the use of medicinal herbs for skin and our general health. There are many excellent herbal skin care products out there, but our Western medicine has moved us so far away from using herbs that it seems the only thing we think of them for now-a-days is cooking.
What a waste. Herbs have been nature's healing gift to us for many thousands of years. Most cultures, including our own, have used them for medicine until modern medical discoveries and research diverted our attention from them. Medicinal herbs for skin are one of the few areas perhaps where they are still openly discussed.
Ironically, medical research projects frequently study herbs and their healthy properties. But often the findings are disguised in scientific words and packaged in synthetic modern medicine look-likes, so we don't always see that what we're using is as herbal as a jungle cure plucked from a vine by an Indian in a loin cloth up the Amazon. Medicinal herbs for skin are an exception, as I've just said.
Our connection with nature has also been cut with the move from the countryside into cities that began to transform the West from the time of the industrial revolution 150 years ago, and is now moving huge crowds of poor people into the slums of gigantic cities in the Middle East and Asia.
Something significant has been lost in this. We've adopted an illness-approach to our health. When we are hit with a sickness we go to a doctor. Not before. Instead of taking medical help to maintain our health, we wait until something strikes us and then try to ward it off.
This is back to front, and completely the opposite of what our ancestors did when they enjoyed a slower, healthier life eating unprocessed food and getting simple, helpful exercise in the daily routines of pre-industrial Europe. They used medicinal herbs for skin and their health, and while they could not cure cancer, neither can we.
Herbal medicine looks at health holistically. This is certainly true with herbal skin care products. It uses natural herbs to get us living as healthily as we can, so that illnesses are prevented.
Of course just because something is found in nature it is not automatically helpful. Here in New Zealand, where I live, there are native plants growing along streams and forest edges that have such a powerful poison that strong cattle die when they eat their shiny green leaves.
But when herbs are brought together carefully they have a natural ability to heal and prevent illness and disease by strengthening and maintaining the body's own healing powers. And for something as visible as skin, this is wonderful. Fortunately medicinal herbs for skin are well-researched and known and can be found is quality creams and lotions that care for our skin.
Watch the labels, though. Read the reviews. Sometimes herbal products claiming to contain medicinal herbs for skin care don't carry the active ingredients they claim. Or they include them in minute quantities (as a profit-making strategy) they are barely effective.
Alarmingly, toxic chemicals are frequently added to cheaper, mass personal care products as a way of making them smell beautiful and last longer on store shelves.
For example, Blue No. 1 is a commonly used artificial coloring that has been shown in animal studies to be carcinogenic.
DMDM Hydantoin, is another example. This preservative often releases formaldehyde which can trigger skin reactions, allergies, headaches, chronic fatigue and sleep loss.
In conclusion, medicinal herbs and herbal supplements will benefit your health. Neither replaces a balanced diet of good food, of course. But carefully selected and blended herbs promote your own body's immune system and help you maintain good health. I recommend you find good herbal skin care products and begin to use them to maintain and enhance your general level of skin health.
William Leonard is writing expertly on skin care and skin care products from his web site http://www.elegant-skincare.com . Click there now to read more about skin care and see his recommendations for medicinal herbs for skin care products that work.