Stay WELL this winter!

Cold weather brings with it all the joys of Fall and Winter: The apple picking! The leaf piles! The holidays! That first beautiful snowfall before it all goes terribly wrong! But, cold weather also brings the misery that's otherwise known as the cold and flu. 

Now, the fact that the cold weather makes you sick has been debunked. In fact, cold weather has a few benefits—it kills off insects and microorganisms that spread disease and helps burn brown fat—so if it's not the cold, what is it? In short... it's the cold. 

Cold weather contributes to making us sick by perpetuating a number of factors: 

All of this comes together to create the perfect storm: virus + weakness = illness. Rinse and repeat as we all pass it around until the summer returns.

Now, you can't change the fact that it's cold and you probably can't do much about the close quarters and poorly ventilated areas we're all forced to inhabit. So, it all comes down to one thing: strengthening your immune system is the best defense against getting sick. Luckily, we knew a few easy, natural ways to do it!

  • Bundle Up!—Bundling up when you go outside—just like your parents always insisted—is a great way to help protect your immune response. Just don't forget your nose! 

  • Sleep!—It feels like this piece of advice is given all the time... but that's because it's true! Studies have shown that the sleep deprived are more likely to get sick and take longer to recover.

  • Take care of your tummy.—70-80% of the immune system lives in your gut. Incorporating prebiotics into your diet feeds your good gut flora, maintaining gut health and, by extension, healthy immune function. 

  • Don't stress!—Okay, easier said than done but... stress damages your immune system. Taking adaptogens—herbs that regulate cortisol levels and help us adapt to stress—in preparations like Immune Tonic, can help! (Bonus, this Tonic's adaptogens double as immunomodulators, to help people with stress-depleted systems and autoimmune diseases!)

  • Take your vitamins.—Specifically Zinc and Vitamin C. Zinc and Vitamin C are powerful antioxidants that support T-Cells (Zinc) and stimulate the production and function of T-Cells and other white blood cells that fight viruses (Vitamin C). 

And last but absolutely never, ever least...

LOOK TO THE HERBS!

The herbal world is filled with natural powerhouses that will stimulate and protect immune function. You just have to know where to look! Because most herbs have wide and varied uses, it can be difficult to pinpoint which is the best for any given situation, but there are two particular herbs that we favor for safe, gentle, and effective immune support at Found Herbal:

  • Astragalus Root

Astragalus Root has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries to strengthen wei chi, the protective energy that guards our body against outside illness.

An adaptogenic, tonic herb—that is, an herb that has benefits that compound andincrease when taken over time—Astragalus is great for:

  • Inflammation

  • Managing stress

  • Enhancing energy

  • Cardiovascular, Liver, and Kidney health

  • Chronic asthma. 

It's also traditionally used to slow the growth of tumors which is due, in part, to its powerful immune strengthening abilities. 

Astragalus Root is an immune stimulant, boosting immune function and building up resistance over time. Its stimulating effect has the ability to restore the immune function in those whose immune systems who have been compromised or weakened by chemotherapy or chronic illness. While this makes it an ideal preventative, Astragalus Root is also helpful in treating illnesses like the common cold and respiratory infections.

  • Elderberry

Elder is an ancient plant that's considered sacred in many cultures because of the healing properties found in each part of the plant—from the flowers to the leaves to the berries. Elderberries are extremely high in Vitamin C as well as other antioxidants and compounds called flavonoids, which makes them a powerful immune stimulant and supporter.

This sweet but tangy berry is also an antiviral that inhibits the spread of viral infection. Combined with its diaphoretic ability—or its ability to induce perspiration—Elderberries can be used to treat cold and flu.

Elderberries, so long as they're properly prepared, i.e. dried correctly, are an extremely safe way for everyone from children to the elderly to receive natural, dynamic, effective immune support before or during illness

Astragalus Root and Elderberry are strong herbs on their own but, together, they are extremely effective. We've taken these herbs—plus a few more of our signature plant-based ingredients—and created several different 100% natural, organic ways for you to take advantage of their powerful immune supporting abilities: 

For prevention:

Immune Oxymel's vinegar & honey blend combines Elderberries and Astragalus root with Rosehips—for an added kick of Vitamin C—to create a delicious preventative treatment. This Oxmel makes day-to-day maintenance and protection easy. Take it as an invigorating shot or add a kick of flavor to your favorite vegetables or salad!

Immune Syrup is a tincture with a sweet-tangy taste that the whole family will enjoy taking. This gentle, effective preparation of Astragalus and Elderberry is traditionally used to support the immune system as a daily preventative but it can also improve recovery from colds, flu, and other viruses. 

Elderberry Honey is the perfect start for people who don't enjoy taking medicines. Infused with Vitamin C rich Elderberries and Rosehips, this honey is a sweet supporter that's an easy addition to your daily routine. Use it in place of your regular honey or think of it as a daily sweet treat! 

If you do happen to get sick, as is sometimes the case, you can harness the power of herbs to treat symptoms and even shorten the length of your illness. Any of our Elderberry and Astragalus preparations are great to take when you're sick, but we've also created several targeted treatments!

For symptom relief: 

Kids Cold & Flu is a gentle, tasty brew with Peppermint and Lemon balm that eases symptoms of cold and flu, encourages healing, and pleases the palate of children and picky adults alike! This blend is also multi-use! For children who won't or are too young to drink tea, Kids Cold & Flu makes an effective hot bath treatment. 

Coughs can be the most difficult and disruptive symptoms of the cold and flu (they're also a great way to spread them!). These cough treatments—Soothing Cough Syrup, with respiratory healer Mullein Leaf and expectorant Pleurisy Root to move dry, unproductive, irritating coughs, and Drying Cough Tincture, with expectorant Wild Cherry and strengthening Thyme for wet coughs with a lot of mucus—

Hot Tonic is a vinegar extract of hot herbs and spices to energize and stimulate the system—and it's here to help you kick cold and flu out! Warming Ginger and Peppercorns, analgesic Chili Pepper, decongestant Horseradish, and immune boosting Garlic make a delicious everyday salad dressing and a powerful stimulant. Take in large doses at the first sign of illness to reduce the severity and length of the cold or flu!

This powerful tincture is packed with immune boosters like Astragalus Root, antimicrobial Echinacea, and powerful lymphagogue Calendula, to make a fast-acting stimulant to support and increase immune function. Immune Boost was created to act as the first line of defense at the first sign of illness like the cold or flu. 

The cold and flu can make life during the cold weather months miserable. But that's why we're so excited about our extensive immune support line! When you take care of yourself and your immune system—with the power of herbs on your side—you can enjoy all the fun opportunities this beautiful season provides, without having to watch from the sidelines (or under a blanket pile)! 

Why we're loving CBD!

You've probably heard some incredible things about CBD already, and that it's widely recommended for it's anti-anxiety, anti-inflammatory, and pain suppressing properties. Maybe you’ve heard about its potential for treating seizures in the news. For all its popularity however, it can still be pretty unclear, so we wanted to share some information on CBD, how we're using it, and why we are LOVING it....

WHAT EXACTLY IS CBD?

CBD stands for cannabidiol. It’s a cannabinoid, a naturally occurring compound found in two types of the cannabis family of plants: hemp and marijuana. Before we go on....don’t worry! CBD is a non-psychoactive compound, and comes from the hemp plant. It does not get you “high” like THC can, and is 100% legal in all 50 states.

Of the 113 known cannabinoids, the two most-commonly and best understood are THC and CBD. THC is slowly becoming known for its health benefits, but because of its psychoactive effects, the use of THC is only legal in certain states with a prescription. CBD offers the same health benefits without the psychoactive effects — and few side-effects for most. 

CBD that's available over-the-counter — that is, without a prescription — is made from hemp, which has <0.3% THC.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

Most cannabinoids, like THC, work within the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a system of neurotransmitters, called endocannabinoids, and their receptors, found in every major body system. The ECS helps maintain homeostasis, or balance, and regulates functions like:

  • Nerve protection

  • Immune function

  • Stress relief (mood)

  • Pain perception

  • Appetite & metabolism

  • Sleep

  • Cognition

CBD, however, is a unique cannabinoid — it doesn’t bind to the classical endocannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2. Instead, it works with several non-cannabinoid channels, which means it affects other systems as well as the ECS.  

CBD enhances and inhibits the binding actions of certain types of receptors like serotonin, and vanilloid, that moderate mood and pain perception respectively. CBD also stops enzymes from destroying neurotransmitters like adenosine, important to combating inflammation, and  Anandamide, an extremely powerful chemical— often called the “bliss molecule” — that plays an important part in all major functions of the ECS.

Okay! That’s a lot of information! But it all boils down to this: CBD is a unique cannabinoid that helps our bodies maintain balance, not just by bolstering the positive effects of the ECS, but through other important systems as well.

WHAT DOES IT DO?

CBD is most commonly used  — and best proven to be effective  — in three ways:

  • Anxiety

In a 2011 study of patients with social anxiety who were asked to speak in front of a large crowd, low doses of CBD meant less reported “anxiety, cognitive impairment, and discomfort.” A year later, CBD was confirmed to have anxiolytic, or anti-anxiety affect in humans and animals.

CBD’s natural ability to balance serotonin receptors is similar to that of SSRI drugs, which are generally prescribed to treat mood disorders. Animal studies would even suggest it can affect serotonin faster than SSRIs. CBD can be an alternative treatment for mood disorders like anxiety without the risk of negative side effects that come with traditional medication.

  • Pain relief

Vanilloid receptors! You may not have heard of them but they’re known to affect pain perception, inflammation, and even body temperature. CBD binds specifically on one vanilloid receptor that regulates pain. Unlike NSAIDS and other over the counter medications, CBD does not cause gastrointestinal ulcers, bleeding, and cerebrovascular accidents.

Human studies done in 2003 and 2008 showed that cannabinoids like CBD offered “significantly superior” pain relief as opposed to a placebo and was effective for “difficult to treat pain”. Since CBD doesn’t have many known side-effects and no risk of overdose, it looks like a very safe candidate for the treatment of chronic or long-term pain.

CBD has been reported to successfully treat pain from migraines, menstrual cramps, and even MS .

  • Inflammation

CBD’s effect on pain is, in many ways, related to its effect on inflammation. Vanilloid receptors are just some of the inflammation related receptors that CBD effects, and a reduction of inflammation in muscles and nerves is a key way to reduce pain. As with the treatment of pain, CBD is favorable to NSAIDS because it doesn’t have the same damaging side-effects. 

AND THERE'S STILL SO MUCH POTENTIAL!

Each confirmed use of CBD opens up a new world of potential uses — to the point where it seems that we’ve just barely scratched the surface of CBD's healing capabilities.

  • Acne & skin aging

Acne. It’s difficult to treat — mostly because we’re still not sure exactly what causes it. We do know that it involves the overproduction of sebum, an oily substance produced by glands in our skin. Studies done on cultured human sebocytes and skin show that CBD reduces the amount of sebocytes, inhibits their production, and (as always!) reduces inflammation. Bonus? It does this without killing cells around it — so this acne treatment won't dry out your skin.

Hemp oil is filled with things other than CBD like omega 3 fatty acids and vitamins like C,B, and E — all of which are important for skin health. Studies have shown that the endocannabinoid system is important to the regeneration of skin cells, so it's possible CBD could be a good anti-aging agent. CBD is also a powerful antioxidant that protects skin from free radicals and it’s already on the fast track to becoming a new beauty essential for skin care.

  • CBD could treat PTSD… and more

CBD’s positive effects on generalized and social anxiety are so promising that researchers are examining what it can do for other anxiety based disorders. This includes disorders like OCD, panic disorders, and PTSD, even in cases that had previously been considered untreatable.

Several studies have shown that the stabilizing effects of CBD and cannabinoids could be antipsychotic. Therefore it could be a great alternative treatment for disorders like Schizophrenia.

  • CBD could offer a way out of addiction

CBD's ability to relieve chronic pain is leading researchers to believe that it can be used as an "exit drug" for opioids. Pre-clinical trials suggest that CBD blocks opioid reward in mice. This means it could help treat pain and reduce the need or desire to take opioids. Another study on animal models has demonstrated what researchers call the “anti-relapse” potential of CBD on rats with addiction.

It's also shown positive effects on cigarette addiction in humans, and alcohol addiction in rats.

  • CBD has anti-tumor properties!

Many cancer patients already use medical cannabis to treat pain, nausea, and improve appetite after chemotherapy treatments.

While there are a limited number of human studies, and we want to be clear on that, CBD is showing potential for use in the treatment of cancer in studies conducted with animal models. In a 2015 study showed that CBD “inhibited the progression” of cancers like colon, breast, lung, and prostate cancers, as well as glioblastomas. One way it works? CBD is anti-tumor — it seems to make tumor cells non-viable, which stops their growth.

  • CBD can protect our nerves

CBD is neuroprotective  which means it can protect nerves from damage and degradation. This makes it extremely beneficial for the treatment of nerve-based pain. But, some researchers think it can go even farther.

The fact that CBD protects nerves from degrading means that it has huge potential for treating Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, MS, and other degenerative diseases. Which is directly related to...

  • The treatment of epilepsy

The CBD Movement actually started when the Figi Family used CBD to treat their daughter Charlotte. Charlotte suffers from Dravet syndrome — a debilitating form of childhood epilepsy — and no other conventional treatment was helping her. When they used high-CBD strain cannabis as a last resort, Charlotte suddenly showed significant improvement.

The FDA has just recommended the approval of the first pharmaceutical grade CBD called Epidiolex to treat Dravet syndrome and another form of childhood epilepsy, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.

So, we're clearing loving CBD. Now the question is…

WHERE CAN YOU GET IT AND HOW DO YOU USE IT?

We've been studying the wide range of benefits CBD has to offer for the past several months. Last month, we attended a Patients Out Of Time national clinical conference, where we met and learned from doctors, scientists, and researchers on the cutting edge of medical cannabis research. Everything we've learned about CBD has made us eager to share it’s benefits.

We're excited to share Found Herbal Apothecary is now offering CBD Oil and a topical CBD Salve! It took a lot research and time to find the very best, organic, broad-spectrum product available and we are thrilled to say that we now carry it in our store.

Not all CBD oils are the same! Since CBD, and cannabis in general, is still fairly new to the market, many products available are not completely pure and have harmful additives, dangerous solvents - like carcinogenic butane, and loaded with herbicides and pesticides.

Found Herbal's CBD Oil is 100% natural CBD extract in organic hemp oil. Made from the whole hemp plant — because we believe that using the whole plant is the best way to benefit from its medicinal qualities — our CBD Oil has no added ingredients.

The hemp used in our oil and salve is grown on an organic farm in Colorado. Each batch comes with reports ensuring there are no heavy metals in the soil, and no herbicides or pesticides were used. This means that we can ensure our products are 100% natural and 100% safe.

CBD can be used in oil form, by taking drops internally, or it can be used topically. Found Herbal’s CBD Salve combines CBD with other pain-relieving, and inflammation decreasing herbs to make a very powerful topical product, great for arthritis, pain, inflammation, injuries and sore muscles.

WE’RE NOT STOPPING THERE!

We’re already working on more CBD based products that will take advantage of even more CBD benefits. Products in development include a face serum (be gone acne and aging!), roll on oil for pain and headaches, and a body cream.

From anxiety and pain relief to treating tumors and epilepsy, CBD has a broad spectrum of relief and healing potential. At Found Herbal we believe that everyone can benefit from giving it a try. Come visit us in our store to start — or continue — your CBD journey today! We can't wait to see you!

CBD Oil and CBD Salve are available in store only. Shipping available for orders placed by phone.
 

Sources:

  1. https://www.leafscience.com/2017/10/25/what-are-cannabinoids/https://ministryofhemp.com/blog/cbd-oil-side-effects/

  2. https://www.projectcbd.org/science/cannabis-pharmacology/how-cbd-works

  3. https://www.projectcbd.org/science/cannabis-pharmacology/how-cbd-works

  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27790143

  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21307846

  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22729452

  7. https://www.leafly.com/news/health/cbd-for-treating-anxiety

  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26711860

  9. https://www.projectcbd.org/science/cannabis-pharmacology/how-cbd-works

  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2503660/

  11. http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1191/0269215503cr581oa

  12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2503660/

  13. https://ministryofhemp.com/blog/cbd-for-pain-relief/

  14. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3026637/

  15. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3026637/

  16. http://www.beyondthc.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/CBD-for-Acne.pdf

  17. http://www.beyondthc.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/CBD-for-Acne.pdf

  18. https://news.medicalmarijuanainc.com/cbd-hemp-oil-works-skin-care/

  19. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/30/style/cbd-oil-beauty-cannabis-pain-relief.html

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  28. https://www.alchimiaweb.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Cannabidiol-and-other-cannabinoids-reduce-microglial-activation-in-vitro-and-in-vivo-relevance-to-Alzheimers-disease1.pdf

  29. https://www.medicalmarijuanainc.com/parkinsons-disease-medical-marijuana-research/

  30. https://www.cnn.com/2013/08/07/health/charlotte-child-medical-marijuana/index.html

  31. https://www.forbes.com/forbes/welcome/?toURL=https://www.forbes.com/sites/michelatindera/2018/04/19/fda-panel-votes-to-approve-marijuana-based-drug-for-epilepsy/&refURL=&referrer=#8fe9d294f691

99 problems, and turmeric solved almost all of them...

Turmeric, a traditional curry spice, is a superstar when it comes to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activity. Not only is it used and prized for both its color and earthy flavor in cooking traditions around the world, but it is revered for its health benefits. While it is recognized by modern medicine, turmeric has been used extensively in natural and folk medicine for centuries.

Here are just a few of its many benefits:

  • Can relieve chronic pain, including rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
  • Improve circulation, prevent heart disease, fight cancer
  • Alleviate depression
  • Improve digestion and liver detoxification

Did you know that cultures that consume a lot of turmeric in the diet -- like those of Indian and Okinawa -- have low rates of cancer and Alzheimer’s?

When consuming turmeric in any form, we recommend adding black pepper, as it dramatically increases the absorption and thus effectiveness of the spice.

It’s important to know that the effects of turmeric build over time with regular use.

Also important to note is that turmeric is not for everyone. It is important to talk to a doctor or qualified practitioner before using this or any substance medicinally.

TURMERIC ELECTUARY:

What is an electuary, anyway? An electuary is a dried or powdered herb mixed with honey. Since both dried herbs and honey are shelf stable, this creates a remedy with a long shelf life.

Turmeric Electuary is one of our most popular products. It is a spicy turmeric tea in local New York honey and is a warming blend that is great for inflammation, digestion, pain, and immune support. In addition to organic turmeric and local honey, this product contains all organic black pepper, ginger root, cinnamon, cardamom, and fenugreek. 

This blend is great for golden milk, in coffee, on toast or pancakes! 

Are you ready for the simplest way to use our Turmeric Electuary? Simply add 1/2 - 1 teaspoon to warm coconut milk or hot water, stir, and enjoy.

 

Sun Safety 101

It’s officially summertime, people!—and that means sun. And though the sun is great for filling us up with bone-strengthening vitamin D, there are also certainly some things it’s not so great for: sunburn, accelerated skin aging, and all the other dangers that can come with too much sun exposure.

So. Time to lather up with heaps of good ol’ sunscreen, right? The answer is yes… and no. Sunscreen can be an excellent protector from the sun’s harmful rays, but when it comes to quality sun protection, not all sunscreens are created equal. In fact, many of the conventional sunscreens you’ll find in the store can actually do more harm than help, despite what their colorful labels may claim.

Too often chemicals found in sunscreen are absorbed through the skin, and can be found in people’s blood, urine, and even breast milk. Here are a few examples of harmful chemicals known to be found in conventional sunscreens:

·      Oxybenzone: Chemical by day, hormone by night, this femme fatale is a synthetic estrogen that can sneak through the skin and disrupt the hormone system. Oxybenzone can lower testosterone levels, modifies sperm production in animals, can filter into women’s breast milk, and has been detected in over 96% of the US population. She’s a popular one—found in almost 65% of the non-mineral based commercial sunscreens tested by the Environmental Working Group in their 2017 database.

·      Octinoxate: Another hormone imposter, Octinoxate not only joins Oxybenzone in causing some skin allergic reactions; in studies it has also been found to affect the thyroid, reproductive system, and, yes, even alter behavior in animals. Octinoxate? Octi-nothankyou.

·      Vitamin A, a.k.a. retinol or retinyl palmitate: This ‘vitamin’ seems innocent enough, as it is an antioxidant that fights against skin aging. Don’t judge a book by its cover, though; federal government studies show that when put on skin and exposed to light, this chemical may activate the development of lesions and skin tumors—not exactly something you want in your sunscreen. Watch out for Vitamin A in skin lotions, cosmetics, and lip products as well.

 

Don’t be fooled into thinking that higher SPF equals more protection, either. Sunscreen with SPF ratings higher than 50 have been called “inherently misleading” by the FDA, as they don’t necessarily do much more than their lowly SPF counterparts; plus, SPF only signifies protection from UVB rays (associated with sunburn), not its equally harmful cousin, UVA radiation (associated with DNA and cell damage, skin aging, and skin cancer).

In fact, most scientists and public health agencies, like the FDA, have not found much evidence to support the idea that sunscreen even protects against most skin cancers! Rather, despite top-dollar sunscreen industries and increased knowledge about sun protection, the most fatal type of skin cancer, melanoma, is three times more rampant now than it was in the 1970s.

We know… sounds pretty bad. But fear not! We’ve put together some tips to help you find a sunscreen that really does just what it’s supposed to, minus the hang-ups:

1.    Repeat After Me: Mineral, Not Chemical

Mineral-based sunscreens, made with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, tend to be a better choice than chemical-based ones, because they do a good job of blocking both UVA and UVB radiation, with minimal health risks. They work differently from chemical-based screens in their protection technique, in that they reflect, rather than absorb, UV rays. They also don’t break down in the sun in the same way that most chemical-based sunscreens do.

2.    All Hail Queen Cream!

Always look for creams instead of sprays, the latter of which may be harmful to the lungs and other internal organs when accidentally inhaled.

3.    Go a-Broad

‘Broad-Spectrum’ labeled sunscreens signify that these shield against both UVA and UVB radiation.

4.    Did Someone Say Internet?

Websites like the Evironmental Working Group (ewg.org) offer ratings of many different sunscreen brands, explaining in detail the health risks and benefits of a given brand name.

[Not in the mood to start scanning bottle labels? We already have a hand made, natural and locally sourced sunscreen available for purchase at the store.]

Now before you rush out into the summer sun, natural sunscreen in hand, keep in mind that shade and clothing are always the real superheroes when it comes to sun protection—sunscreen ought to be thought of more as their trusty sidekick.

Okay. Now ready, set, sun!