Summer is a great time for planting, eating, and growing natural herbs. Fresh herbs have health-boosting properties that also add zest and flavor to light and refreshing summer meals. Here are six of the best healing herbs to add to your herbs list this summer.
Basil is so versatile, and its scent is divine. It is high in Vitamin A and is known to be excellent for eye health and vision, eliminating bad bacteria and viruses in the body, reducing inflammation, and promoting a healthy gut
From pesto to caprese salads, you’ll want to have this plant front and center on your countertop. Pick its fresh leaves and sprinkle liberally in salads, sauces and even desserts for a sweet and savory contrast.
Stinging nettle has been used for at least 2,000 years to treat arthritis and other inflammatory diseases. It’s most famous as a hair tonic and its other benefits include regulating blood sugar, enhancing circulation
, and treating gout and impotence.
Dried stinging nettle leaves can be steeped to make a delicious herbal tea, while its fresh leaves, stems and roots can be cooked and added to soups, stir-frys, and smoothies. The leaves get their ‘sting’ from histamine and formic acid contained in their underleaf hairs. But once cooked, stinging nettle is nothing but tasty.
Mint smells great, grows fast, and has many healing properties. It’s great for reducing flatulence, masking bad breath, relieving headaches, soothing digestion, and has a calming quality that’s good for heart health
Having a supply of fresh mint water or tea is a great way to keep cool. The easiest way to enjoy this lovely leaf is to place a handful of fresh mint leaves in a quart pitcher or jar, add spring or distilled water and leave it in the refrigerator overnight for a cold-brewed infusion. Sip, hot or cold throughout the day.
Similar to mint’s attributes, a warm dill tea treats an upset stomach, is a light aromatic that freshens breath and adds a tasty zing to any dish. Another surprising benefit of dill is its high calcium content and antibacterial properties.
Mix this feathery favorite in with your favorite tuna or chicken salad or use it to garnish grilled asparagus.
Rosemary, fresh or dried, is a pungent, sturdy herb with superb health benefits. Rosemary, high in antioxidants and volatile oils, has long been used for everything such as pain relief, digestion, hair growth, and treating depression.
One of its lesser known benefits is as a memory enhancer. Studies have shown that rosemary boosts memory
and helps students recall facts if they smelled the herb while studying, and again while taking their tests.
Use a fresh sprig of rosemary or some essential oil as an herbal cheat sheet during your exam for better recall! Also, while cooking, rosemary goes great with a variety of dishes such as soups, salads, stews, fish, and grains.
Mild and oniony, chives are a delicious addition to many dishes. They are high in Vitamins A and K. Chives also contain allicin (similar to garlic, onions, leeks), a plant compound that is good for keeping cholesterol levels in check.
The best way to eat chives is to snip them with scissors instead of chopping and add them to garnishes, salads, sandwiches, soups, and sauces just before serving.
Who knew these summer herbs had so many healing properties? If you’re interested in a free online course that shows simple healthy recipes to try at home, check out Healthy Eating Tips: Easy Vegan Recipes
led by certified rejuvenation chef, Kryssi Gala.
Let us know in the comments below what you think and if you have any tips or recipes you’d like to share!