so this is part one of two. the second part will be an overall skin health tincture and hand / body salve. so keep an eye out for part two coming soon(ish)!
in part one, we're talking about psoriasis. i've been struggling to write this post because 1) i'm not a dermatologist and 2) this is one of those instances where i am taking my very best instincts, information, and advice from trusted herbalists and throwing it at the wall with my fingers crossed.
i don't suffer from psoriasis, personally. but a relative does. she came over recently and listed a bunch of different things that she's tried. so of course i wanted to add my own remedy to the mix: a psoriasis tincture! you might be thinking "but it's her skin. why would she take something internally to fix something externally?" and that's a great question. one that i'm not medically qualified to answer perfectly but the gist is this: apparently psoriasis, even though it shows up on your skin, is an immune problem that starts inside your body and presents as a buildup of scaly skin cells externally. your skin is an organ. all of your body's organs react, in some way, to what you ingest. and the tissue of your skin is no different. it's busy protecting your insides and secreting toxins and all sorts of cool things. and anything you can do to boost those functions, like taking a rad anti-inflammatory, liver supporting tincture, should help your skin be better at what it does. including, in theory, shedding dead skin cells instead of building them up in scaly patches.
sometimes an herbal medicine is tried and true. and sometimes it's an educated hypothesis using knowledge of a specific client's condition, other illnesses and medications, and an understanding of the herbal actions of my ingredients. this is the latter. if YOU have a tried and true psoriasis remedy, i would love to hear about it in the comments!
psoriasis tincture: pau d'arco, oregon grape root, turmeric, black peppercorn, calendula, burdock root, yellow dock, licorice root, milk thistle, oregano, thyme, and arnica, all extracted in vodka
most people don't think about it much, but there are lots of different kinds of breathing. the shallow kind that happens when we're anxious or stressed. the deep belly breaths that happen when we're being mindful and relaxed. the breath that happens on auto-pilot and helps us heal while we sleep.
and the other kind of breathing. the kind we are almost too aware of. when we struggle to get a deep breath because of tight chest muscles. or seasonal allergies. or asthma. or mucus (i know, i hate it too). or the flu. or inflammation. so many reasons it can become difficult to do this vital thing.
just so you know, the heart chakra is energetically connected to your lungs (at first i wrote "lunch"... i should grab a snack). if you are struggling with grief, relationship trouble, no time for self care, etc, there is a good chance your body is communicating this to you via chest discomfort. tight muscles, heartburn, difficulty breathing, etc. or vice versa! the physical symptoms may be the very thing causing the chakra blockage. here are a few recommendations! you can see a reiki practitioner to unblock your heart chakra, add some hawthorn berries to your tea for heart support, ask me for a respiratory health tincture (or make your own!)
here are the details:
mullein leaf, turmeric, black peppercorn*, lungwort (seems appropriate), elecampane, echinacea, thyme, oregano, lobelia, peppermint, licorice root (watch this one if you have high blood pressure), valerian (watch this one if you plan on operating heavy machinery), extracted in vodka
* in case you notice this as a theme, i always pair black peppercorn with turmeric because it helps with absorption! now ya know.
i did just deliver a fresh batch of these babies to Farmacy at Heckel Farm in baltimore! if you're in the mood for some lung health goodness once those pollens start flying around, go grab a bottle! if you don't like (or don't drink) alcohol based tinctures, give me a holler and i'll whip you up a glycerin-based batch just for you.
i've never tried to conceive. nor do i wish to, at this juncture in my life. but i can imagine if you are someone who would like to create a new human the "traditional" way (fertilizing an egg with a sperm - [i tried typing this lots of different ways and there was just no way that didn't look clinical...]), and you are having biological setbacks, it must be frustrating at best. i know there are lots of options, some expensive, some time consuming, some painful, etc, and the degree of success varies with each. so i am offering my two cents from my own areas of... well, expertise might be a stretch. but i offer my humble suggestions here:
1. clear your sacral chakra!
the sacral chakra, located around your belly button, is a hotbed of creativity and fertility when it's unblocked and balanced. the sacral chakra is tied, energetically, to your reproductive organs and hormone producing glands. of course i recommend seeing a reiki practitioner to get yourself unblocked and see what other issues may be underlying (come see me if you're in baltimore!), but you can also try this sacral chakra balancing meditation by yourself, at home:
find a comfortable place to sit or lay, undisturbed and un-distracted.
direct your attention up to the navel, wrapping around to the middle of the back. this is your Sacral Chakra. the Svadhisthana. creativity and sexuality and fertility live here. begin to picture this area glowing with orange light. yours may be amber, or coral, or a deep red orange, or anything in between. go deep into it and explore the colors as you feel that band of light and warmth begin to grow. what does it look like to you? explore the visuals and the sensations of your Sacral Chakra as it comes into balance. breathe into this place, sending your breath all the way down. continue to breathe into it, this band of orange light. and feel your creativity, your abundance, your fertility, your virility.
you are rich and fertile soil where things can grow. ideas, joy, abundance, pleasure, and wellness can grow from you. feel yourself moving freely with change, finding new solutions to old problems. feel yourself creating. creating your own emotional identity and space for yourself. you are abundant. lush. fertile. virile.
2. try a fertility tincture!
i have found these to be successful for friends, taken 10-20 drops per day.
if you want some good information on tincture making, i recommend these instructions from starwest botanicals or this page from mountain rose herbs! you can also buy bulk herbs from either one and they are both fantastic, imho. if you're feeling shy about making your own, get in touch! i will gladly make you anything you need, customized just for you. <3
Christina is a reiki practitioner, herbalist, and ordained minister living in Baltimore with 1 wife, 1 cat, and 1 day job.