While fall is a beautiful time of the year, it can bring about bothersome health woes include aches and pains, cuts, and itchy eyes. Thankfully, all you have to do is reach in your kitchen cabinet for relief with these six natural cures that use everyday pantry staples!
Slashes Stress: Simmering Spices
It’s not just you — two in three of us start feeling more edgy and tense when summer fun ends and we settle back into the hustle and bustle of busy fall routines. To chase away worries and feel like your sunny self again, gently simmer one teaspoon of cinnamon and one teaspoon of nutmeg in two cups of water on the stove. Canadian researchers say these sweet, familiar aromas ramp up your brain’s production of electrical impulses (alpha waves) that quash stress and produce a more content mood within just five minutes.
Soothes Muscle Pain: Rosemary Soaks
Seasonal to-do’s like raking leaves and putting away patio furniture double the risk of muscle stiffness and pain. Thankfully, soaking in a steamy rosemary-scented bath can ease aches in 20 minutes, plus cut the risk of future pain flares by 60 percent if you enjoy baths three times weekly, say Norwegian scientists. They explain that hot water relaxes tight muscles and boosts healing blood flow to injured tissues, while rosemary’s aromatic oils prompt the release of pain-soothing serotonin. To make an infusion, put 1⁄2 cup of dried rosemary in a mug and cover with boiling water; steep for 10 minutes, strain, then add the liquid to your tub.
Erases Indigestion: Gelatin Sips
Grandma was onto something with her tummy-soothing Jell-O sips! That’s because gelatin is a protein packed with nine digestion-enhancing amino acids. Stanford University scientists say sipping a warm gelatin brew calms an upset stomach in just 15 minutes, plus prevents indigestion and gassiness if you sip it twice daily. To do: Mix one tablespoon of gelatin with a splash of room-temperature water to form a soft gel, then stir into hot coffee or tea and enjoy!
Fights Fatigue: A Coconut Massage
Fall’s shorter days and weather fluxes lower levels of the energizing hormone dopamine. But massaging your feet and toes with a dab of coconut oil restores energy in two minutes. So say researchers in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, who explain that stimulating acupressure points in feet spurs dopamine release, and coconut oil helps activate key nerve clusters.
Calms Itchy Eyes: Mint Tea Compress
Colder, drier air and seasonal pollen surges triple the risk of dry, irritated eyes right now. A soothing solution: Dip two cotton pads into strong, chilled spearmint tea and place them on your lids for five minutes twice daily. Researchers at Connecticut’s University of Bridgeport say spearmint’s L-carvone dampens inflammation in mucous membranes and shrinks swollen capillaries to relieve itching, redness, and irritation fast.
Heals Cuts and Scrapes: Cloves
Big outdoor tasks can lead to minor cuts and scrapes that you don’t want to get infected. The cure in your spice rack? Cloves! Research in the journal Natural Product Communications suggests that sprinkling ground cloves onto a clean, dry wound shuts down itching, stinging and pain within seconds, plus guards against infection by killing bacteria and fungi on your skin. Credit goes to cloves’ eugenol, a natural antiseptic, anti-inf lammatory and painkiller.
This article originally appeared in our print magazine, First For Women.