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The Winged Seed for Summer 2003

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The Winged Seed

The Quarterly Newsletter from Samara Botane - Nature Intelligence
P. O. Box 2483
Snohomish, WA 98291
Order Desk 800.782.4532
Corporate 360.862.0231
Fax 360.862.0244
5% retail discount for online shopping
Register for professional discount and bulk pricing at

Summer 2003 Vol 4 Issue 2

Healthy Immunity: Limiting the Risk of Viral and Bacterial Infection

Summertime: The Perks and The Pests


New Essential Oils and Hydrosols


Vetiver Fans -- made from vetiver root. Sprinkle with water and fan yourself to experience the vetiver aroma, and keep yourself cool in the summer heat. $3.00

Neem Oil on special!  15% off

Organic Coconut Butter, smooth and creamy for exquisite soaps and creams . . . 15% off 

Rose-Kim-Header_400.jpg (28419 bytes)
click to expand photo
Make your summer purchases online and receive a free bar of beautiful handmade Rose-Kim soap.  Selection can be made from Awake, Calendula Castile, Cool Malachite, Indulgence, Lait Lavande, Oatmeal Almond or Oktoberfest on the SB shopping cart.  Even though it will show on your order as charged, we will remove the charge at the time we process your order.  Selections will be made on a first come, first serve basis, depending on available quantities.  We reserve the right to substitute another soap if supplies of your requested choice are exhausted.  Offer good through August 2003.  Look in our online shop under Soaps.

Healthy Immunity

Limiting The Risk of Viral and Bacterial Infection

Immunity is an expression of homeostasis, the umbrella concept that describes the human body's physiological processes that maintain a stable internal environment and encompasses the interface between inner and outer environments.  The word 'terrain' has been coined to define the importance of both inner and outer influences on the human organism and includes physical, mental/emotional and familial/societal influence for the required balance for homeostasis.

Immunity describes a complex process within the body, rather than a specific group of organs.  Certain organs, tissue and cells have a predominantly immunological function, including reticulo-endothelial (a network of nerves throughout the brain stem and layers of cells that line the heart, blood vessels and lymphatic ducts), bone marrow, lymph glands, the thymus and spleen.  The classical biological definition of immunity includes all of the physiological mechanisms that give the human organism the ability to recognize foreign substances and neutralize or degrade them, with or without injury to the organism's own tissue.

Today, we live in a world where disease and illness can quickly change and mutate; become stronger and less likely to be treated with the usual antibiotics and cold remedies used in the past.  Coupled with a stressful lifestyle and more complex societal and personal  issues to deal with, we humans are at risk of neglecting self-care that can keep us less likely to get sick.  Modern medicine has done well to create antibiotics to combat and treat bacterial infection, however,  there has been little success in creating synthetic antiviral agents.  Although most of the evidence available to us is anecdotal, not scientific, the effectiveness of some herbs and essential oils against bacteria and viruses is becoming more evident.

Always, and especially with any symptoms such as those mentioned above, seek the advice of your health care professional.    For general good health maintenance, do your part to change poor lifestyle and habits that deplete your immune system and put additional stress on your body.. Take charge - empower yourself to enhance and compliment your body's 'terrain' for optimum health and well-being.  This small article provides ideas to attend to your own good health with specific attention to your immune system and cautious use of natural herbs and essential oils..  

Herbs and Essential Oils to Help build your immune system:

  Herbs for deep immune action:  Astragalus membranaceous, Ligustrum lucidum, Lentinus edoes, Ganoderma lucidurn, Codonopsis tangshen
   Herbs for systemic support for homeostasis:  
Bitter tonics (Mild -Taraxacum off., Artemisia abotanum, Achillea millefolia, Matricaria recutita) (Strong - Artemisia absinthium, Berberis vulgaris, Centauria erythraea, Eupatorium perfoliatum, Gentiana spp. Hydrastis canadensis, Ruta graveolens). Alterative/Tonic herbs (Mild - Allium sativum, Anemone pulsatilla, Berberis aquifolia, Chionanthus virgincus, Cimifuga racemosa, Baptisia tinctoria, Echinacea spp., Menyanthes trifoliata) (Stronger, yet safe - Arctium lappa, Fumaria off., Galium aparine, Guaiacum off., Hydrastis canadensis, Rumex crispus, Trifolium repens, Urtica doica)
  All of the terpene essential oils are anti-microbial.  At one time various essential oils and their constituent terpenoids were applied in allopathic medicine for combating infections, particularly those of the bronchial and urinary tracts, and in preventing sepsis of burns and wounds.  Some of these oils still find extensive application as disinfectants, as the anti-septic activity of these oils often exceeds that of phenol.  For example, Thymol is about 20 times more efficacious than phenol.  Monoterpene oils have mild anti-septic properties and coupled with their rubefacient action on gums are beneficial as toothpaste or mouthwash.  Essential oils (common names) with anti-septic strength above that of phenol are: Thyme, Origanum, Sweet Orange, Lemon Grass, Cinnamon, Rose, Clove, Eucalyptus, Peppermint, Rose Geranium, Anise, Rosemary, Neroli, Lavender, Melissa and Ylang Ylang.  All of these essential oils can be diffused in moderation to keep the environment more germ free, and combined with those that relax and calm, will help create the desired harmony and balance.   Shop for any of these essential oils at our online shop. 
Books - Prescription for Nutritional Healing, Balch & Balch; Prescription for Herbal Healing, Phyllis A. Balch, CNC; Essential Aromatherapy, Susan Worwood & Valerie Ann Worwood 

Your Immunity Toolbox:

REST:  Your body heals and repairs itself when you are in deep R.E.M. sleep. Simply falling into bed at night, exhausted, worried and restless, does not replenish and rebuild the human organism.  Choose the tools that help you get maximum deep sleep so that your body can do its nightly work.  Balance work and play with equal amounts of rest, meditation or quiet contemplation to temper stress levels and maintain balance.  Restful music and a quiet cup of calming tea (chamomile,  hops, valerian) before bed helps you empty your mind and leave worries for another time.

DIET:  You've heard it a million times - "you are what you eat."  I'd add - "You are also how you eat."   Make healthy dietary decisions based on good nutritional advice and your individual dietary needs.  No matter what type of healthy diet you choose, throw out all processed foods, white sugar and white flour.  Free yourself from the empty carbohydrate rat race.  Feed your body and mind spiritually when you eat, with good company and uplifting conversation, pleasant music,  giving your digestive system a relaxed state to perform optimally.

EXERCISE:  Use It or Lose It!  There is no getting around it; we need to move our bodies, stretch to loosen taut muscles and get our heart rate pumped to prime all body functions and systems.   Ride a bicycle, swim, jump on a trampoline, play ball with your children, hike, join an exercise club . . . there are limitless choices to get off your duff and start moving.     

AMBIENCE:  Balance and harmony are the key to taking a successful preventative approach.  A clear and free flow of energy through the various aspects of individual life can transform metabolic and physiological processes.  Lighting, color, music, placement, personal interactions, spirituality, cleanliness and energy flow all contribute to either the ease or hindrance of function, temperament and attitude.  It makes sense; the more pleasing your environment (there's that 'terrain' again), the happier your immune system.  If you have a constant irritable problem with a co-worker or other difficult relationship, seek resolution so that this is not adversely affecting your good health.  Remember little things like periodic cleaning of your toothbrush - and wash your hands often!  

COMMUNITY:  We have much to do in our modern lives.  The ancient expression, "Kali Yuga" is loosely translated to 'too many things for the time allowed'.  This certainly can apply to our modern world.  It is easy to neglect relationships, volunteering for projects in the community, and plain old what was once called 'chewing the fat'  because we simply find we do not have time.  Using the 'terrain' 'concept, help your family make time and allowance in your life for participating with others in your community and environment.  Spend time with those confidants who can help you talk through and resolve problems and troubling issues.  Join a church choir, book club, nonprofit action group - or simply call a friend who makes you laugh and make a date for lunch or similar fun get-together.   

The information at the left provides a list of herbs and essential oils that can be helpful to maintaining a healthy immune system.  Before starting any self-care regimen using natural ingredients, be sure that you have fully researched all available information to ascertain  any risks or possible adverse effects.  

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Scented Summer Cooler:  Delight your children with this delicious fragrant summer cooler.  It is a wonderful way to replace carbonated beverages loaded with sugar.  Put two tablespoons honey in a blender, add 2 drops of citrus essence or citrus essential oil (orange, lemon tangerine, grapefruit), blend thoroughly.  You can substitute your favorite essential oil (peppermint, corn mint, bitter orange, rose).  Add 16 ounces of good water, mix well and chill.   


 The Perks and The Pests

NEW! Essential Oils & Hydrosols:

Essential oils:

Organic Catnip (Nepeta cataria) Especially good mixed in aloe vera gel, lotion or fixed oil for insect repellant. . . .5 ml - $20

Chocolate absolute  (Thebroma cacao )  The best we have found!!  Superb in blends. .   2.4 ml $10

Dong Quai absolute  (Angelica sinensis)  A nice addition to women's blends, the oriental form of angelica. . . . 2 ml $20

Green Mandarin (Citrus reticulata) Luscious, robust and herbaceous alternative to red; it's a whole different season/distillation.  A treat to experience . . . 5 ml $12

Peppermint, Triple Distilled  (Mentha piperita)  Of course, three times more brilliant!!  Excellent quality . . . 15 ml $15

Hydrosols: (Organic)

Frankincense (Boswellia carteri) Wonderful and gentle for skin care rejuvenation during summer . . . 2 oz. spritzer $5.25

Ginger (Zingiber off.) Warming compress for summer exertion; helps warm deep aches & pains . . . 2 oz. spritzer $6.25

Helichrysum  (Helichrysum italicum) Another gentle application for bruises and sprains . . . 2 oz. spritzer $7.00

English Rose (Rosa damascena)  Delicious in summer coolers, and healing for sunburn and chapped skin and lips . . . 2 oz. spritzer $5.25

Vitex (Vitex agnus-castus)  NEW!  For women, the possibilities await . . . 2 oz. $5.25


There is no doubt that summer brings the most fun; a reprieve from daily studies for school-age children, a much-needed vacation break for the breadwinners; and weekends filled with camping, outings and family gatherings.  Being aware of the pitfalls of summer will help create fond memories to last a lifetime without the pain of oversight.

If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, be prepared for the sun's strongest ultraviolet rays during the summer months.  There is a direct link between melanoma and severe sunburn.  Apply sunscreen (30 minutes before going outside) with a SPF of at least 15 is a, even on cloudy days.  Those sunscreens containing titanium dioxide are chemical free.  Remember to re-apply every two hours or sooner if you are swimming or sweating.  Wearing a hat is imperative, especially for older people.  And, if you can see your hand through your clothing, the weave is not tight enough to help prevent the harmful effects of UV rays.  Natural fibers are best.  Even your eyes can be sun damaged, so don't forget 100% UVA and UVB protection eyewear.  Small babies, especially newborns, should never be exposed to sunlight in the summer months.  The strongest sun is between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.  Plan your outdoor activities so that you and your family are not in the sun for that entire period of time.  If you are fair-skinned and/or red- or blond-haired, you are at increased risk of sunburn.     

There are a wide array of hydrosols and aromatherapy spritzers to help ease the skin effects of too much sun (listed in the column on the left).  Always consult your health care provider in the case of a severe sunburn.  Every summer first aid kit should include fresh aloe vera.  You can carry a leaf in a Ziploc bag, slicing off small amounts and removing the sticky gel for skin application.  Lavender and tea tree oil, diluted in spritzer or lotion, can be a soothing help for sunburn. 

Another risk in hot weather is dehydration.  Too much sun, heat or muggy weather can be dangerous for your family and pets.  Make sure that everyone is drinking plenty of good, fresh water to re-hydrate.  Stay away from soda and fruit juices; they can increase instead of decrease thirst.  Sweating will cause loss of electrolytes, so it is sometimes a good idea to add these to water for replenishment.  To avoid heat stroke, do not expose yourself or your family to excessive amounts of heat.  Warning signs are dizziness, fatigue, faintness and headaches, with skin feeling dry and hot and there is no sweating and perhaps a high temperature.  If any of these symptoms are present, cool down in a cold-water bath and call your health care provider or go to a hospital or medical facility.

Encounters with unfriendly plants are another hazard of summer.  Purchase a reference book or field guide and teach your children what poison ivy, sumac and poison oak look like and how to avoid them.  Poison ivy produces an itchy, blister-like rash.  If skin contact is made, wash the area immediately.  The sticky oil from this plant can also cling to shoes, clothing, toys and/or tools, so make sure that everything that comes in contact is washed with soapy water.  A natural remedy to help dry up a rash is bentonite clay.  The spritzers and hydrosols listed are also helpful for easing discomfort.  It is smart to have an over-the-counter antihistamine on hand if discomfort becomes unbearable.

Summertime is filled with insects that can annoy and whose bites can cause pain, itching and discomfort.  Some mosquitoes and ticks also carry diseases, like West Nile Virus and Rocky Mountain Fever.  Although West Nile causes only mild reactions in most people who have it, the elderly and people with compromised immune systems, such as cancer patients and people who are HIV-positive, are at risk of developing life-threatening symptoms.  People are being urged to survey their properties and remove, overturn or cover all containers that contain standing water, such as cans, bottles, tires, trash cans, birdbaths and potted plant holders.  Wear long sleeves and long pants in the evenings to help prevent mosquito bites.  Thoroughly search hair and body for ticks after spending time in the woods.  Catnip essential oil is proving to be the most effective mosquito repellent on the market today.

Insects can be fascinating and summer is a time to learn more about them.  Challenge your amateur entomologists with some solid information about these amazing critters.  As an example, did you know that if you gathered all the bugs in the world in one place and weighed them that they would weigh more than all the world's people and animals put together?!!  Did you know that a spider eats its own weight in food each day?  Insects have 6 legs and spiders have 8; Insects have 3 body parts and spiders have 2; insects have antennae and spiders do not.  Search the web for entomology and find fascinating games to educate about insects this summer.

A first aid kit is essential for summer safety and should be carried at all times.  Some items that should be included are: flashlight, scissors, tweezers, thermometer, safety pins, eyewash cup, elastic bandage, sterile gauze pads, waterproof tape, butterfly bandages, anti-microbial essential oils and ointments, sunscreen, lip balm, aloe leaf, waterproof matches, snakebite and sting kits, your doctor's phone number and whatever else you keep handy in your medicine cabinet.  Make sure that you are aware of allergies to plants and insects and take a First Aid and/or CPR class to better handle family emergencies.  Be sure to include essential oils like lavender, tea tree, peppermint and chamomile for minor emergencies.


 Summer Redebeckia in full Bloom

Summer Rudebeckia in Full Bloom

Upcoming Classes

Dr. Keith Shawe, Ph.D., botanist and educator
Plant Science for Aromatherapists

September 13, 14, 2003 (Field Trips on September 15)

Seattle, WA  (Ramada Inn Northgate)

Price: $300 for the whole weekend, $275 for Saturday-Sunday (without field trip) or $145 each day. $50 discount for students for the weekend.

Learn more about the plants that produce essential oils.

In this two day intensive workshop, Dr. Shawe aims to connect information on the distribution, evolutionary relationships of aromatic plant groups, plant anatomy, morphology, chemotypes, and plant taxonomy in an intricate but understandable framework for the therapeutic work of aromatherapists. The information is presented in the form of lectures and conversations that include reference to the relevant social, conservation, harvesting and sustainable use issues that often go unexamined within the industry. Important aromatic plant families are discussed in terms of both their physical and chemical attributes. Unique slide shows based on Dr. Shawe’s travel around the world are used to illustrate the use of aromatic plants by indigenous peoples, key identification characteristics of selected species, and the anatomical structures involved in essential oil storage. Plant samples and essential oil samples are used to enhance the wealth of written materials that each participant receives.

Visit the Course Web Page for more information or to Register

The most recent issues or Aromatherapy Today (March and June 2003) are in stock.

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