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Spices and Herbs: Natural Healing Traditions of Mexico
by Elaine K. Harriss

May/Mayo 1998

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Some of the world's greatest healing agents have been derived from simple, native herbs and spices. Mexico offers generations of traditional natural medicines handed from grandmother to mother to daughter. With this heritage and the rich variety of cultures and landscapes, Latin American families have managed to continue their use of herbs for medication without controversial mandates that we experience in the United States.

True that in most families these traditional medicines are from lack of accessibility of over-the-counter drugs and prescribed medications, but who is to say that this is not of more benefit than loss? Studies have shown that the lack of side-effects with natural herbal medicines offers an easier healing process for most people. A few examples of Mexico's common healing herbs are:

The widespread use of herbs in alternative medicine is proof that traditional family methods for treating illness are becoming not only popular once again, but the resurgence of teaching and practice have shown that these traditional beliefs are a vital treasure necessary to ensure the wholeness of our culture. When visiting Mexico, you will find these herbs in most pueblos at the local yerberia or la casa de la curandera.

 

As an avid lifetime home botanist, Elaine K. Harriss has studied and grown medicinal herbs for approximately fifteen years. She lives in Central Texas and participates in the Farmer's Market in Austin. She can be contacted via email Email: ekeddings@netscape.net

 

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