Herbs are a special category of food that deserve their own chapter to discuss all their fantastic benefits and uses. Herbs are amazing healing plants given to us by God for beauty, healing, flavor, preservation of foods, and cleaning. Let’s look at how we can better utilize this God-given tool for health.
Herbs bring beauty into our world, whether in the garden or as indoor houseplants. They are hardy, fast-growing, flowering plants. Each year I find myself devoting more and more space in my garden to these easy-to-grow perennial beauties.
Herbs are one of the first plants to sprout in the spring, which allows me to harvest them before anything else in the garden. You can plant a small herb plant in the garden one year and have it spreading wildly the next. They require little to no effort and provide a constant supply of fresh herbs.
They can also be grown indoors year-round for that extra fresh ingredient that brings a burst of flavor to any dish you cook in the kitchen. Herbs make fantastic houseplants. They bring the calming color of green and their beautiful fragrance indoors. Just running your hands along the leaves of the plant is enough to give you a dose of aromatherapy anytime.
Herbs offer flowers for the bees and beauty in your environment. Flowers are an important part of the garden to support our pollinators. Without bees, we do not get pollination. Without pollination, we do not get good harvests.
Currently, bee populations are at risk due to parasites, the overuse of pesticides, and reduction in wild habitats. Planting more herbs and other flowering plants will bring greater beauty to your environment but also support your local bee population.
Herbs are used today mostly as spices. I am sure you have an arsenal of dry herbs in your kitchen. They are fantastic ways to add flavor to food and create a culinary experience. Certain herbs can take you to far-off destinations without leaving your home. You can change the flavor of an entire dish with a pinch of spices. They are potent ingredients.
Herbs have been used to flavor and preserve food throughout history. They are a zealously sought-after commodity, and people traveled long distances to get them. Christopher Columbus set out on his Atlantic voyage motivated by finding a shorter route to the Spice Islands to secure a consistent supply. The Queen of Sheba brought large quantities of spices to King Solomon as a gift when she visited him (see 1 Kings 10).
Most spices have antimicrobial properties that inhibit bacterial growth, which would otherwise spoil the food. They have been sought after as valued additions to food for thousands of years. Cloves, oregano, thyme, cinnamon, cumin, rosemary, garlic, ginger, basil, fennel, coriander, and black pepper all have studied and proven food-preservation characteristics. Throughout history, when there was no refrigeration available to preserve food, people relied heavily on spices to do the job.
God created cleansing herbs for use in purifying the altar and our bodies. The Israelites used many herbs daily, as prescribed by God. Those herbs kept the altar clean and boosted the immunity of temple worshipers. The Bible lists many of these herbs, like galbanum, clove, frankincense, myrrh, and cassia.
We know today that galbanum is an antiseptic and prevents the spread of disease. Cloves are an antiseptic and stress reducer. Frankincense is an herb that reprograms the cellular response and contributes to permanent healing. Myrrh is a fungicide and antiseptic and protects against infectious diseases. Cassia is an antiseptic, antibiotic, and immune system builder. Those are just some of the healing herbs mentioned in the Bible.
God created medicinal plants and healing herbs for use when we are sick. When we are unwell, we can utilize herbal supplements or essential oils to facilitate healing and shorten the duration of the illness. Herbs have potent healing ability when used therapeutically.
Many common spices have benefits beyond flavoring food, preserving, cleansing, and healing. Herbs can help our bodies regulate healthy function in various systems. Cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar. When you eat cinnamon, your blood sugar does not spike as high. Garlic is a great antibacterial and cold-fighting spice you can use to boost your immune system. Ginger can help with an upset stomach.
As you can see, herbs have many healing properties. A pharmaceutical drug is often synthesized from a naturally occurring herb or plant, but it is an isolated compound concentrated to many times its natural strength. Pharmaceutical drugs usually have side effects because of this.
An herb is thousands of compounds all combined in a single plant. They are utilized by different metabolic pathways in the body, working together to create a gentle healing effect. All the compounds balance each other and work together in the body to heal whatever is ailing it. It is uncommon for healing herbs to have strong side effects like pharmaceutical drugs, an advantage herbs have over pharmaceutical drugs.
Praise for The Light Way
“This book is packed with inspiration on how to live a much healthier lifestyle from the inside out. Jessica unpacks information and insight in an easy to read and understand way. She offers a well rounded and practical guide to be healthy inside and out. For years I have said I would grow a garden and Jessica has provided me with an easy to follow plan to do so. I recommend this book to anyone that desires to honor what God has already provided for us.”
“I was really amazed at the simplistic tools the author provides. I shied away from trying yoga and never knew there existed such a thing as Holy Yoga. I will definitely be looking into this to help me on my journey for overall health and well being. This book was an easy, quick read and even easier to implement ideas. This has definitely blessed me in my own journey for 2020!”
“God has given us everything we need to survive and thrive. Health is generated from within and the author identifies the tools to encourage health of the mind, body and spirit. She simplifies the steps to take to be your best self.”
“This book is a great reminder that the Bible is a complete guide for living our best lives. I especially liked the chapter on rest and how the author weaves in quotes from the Bible on how Jesus specifically instructed us to not waste our lives with worry.”
“The Light Way by Jessica Mutunga is filled with rich insight and information but I am most impressed with her openness and honesty. Her statement, “There is so much freedom and rest in learning our priorities from Jesus and staying connected to God” just touched me deeply. Thank you, Jessica.”
About the Author
Jessica Mutunga is a certified Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P) and Christian health coach. She works with Christian women struggling with chronic illness, teaching them the life skills of health and wellness, so they can regain their health and be a more powerful force for the Kingdom of God. She founded The Light Way Coaching, blending past experiences, knowledge, training and immense faith to bring holistic healing to Christian women everywhere.