Most survivalists have a 72 hour bug out bag packed and ready. If you are also a naturalist, you might want to consider adding some medicinal herbs to that backpack.
Medicinal plants can be lifesaving if used properly. Here are some that you should consider packing.
Oil of Oregano
This is not to be confused with the dried leaves that we use to flavor our food. The oil that is extracted from the oregano plant is very concentrated. You can purchase liquid tinctures of oil of oregano online or from health food stores in 1 fluid ounce bottles that are a cinch to carry.
Or, you can get the therapeutic grade pure essential oil of oregano preparation that is super concentrated and must be diluted. A little goes a long way with this herbal extract.
Oregano contains thymol and carvacrol. These phenols have antibacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-parasitic properties, according to Organic Facts. If you are stuck outside during an emergency situation, oregano will help treat respiratory infections, skin and internal fungal infections, and parasites that you might have picked up from water that wasn’t as clean as you thought.
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The bark of the Willow Tree has been used for thousands of years as a pain reliever and fever reducer. People were instructed to chew on the bark. Per the University of MD, salacin in willow bark is what was used to develop the active ingredient in aspirin in the 19th century.
The best way to use willow bark is to steep it in boiling water to make a tea. If you have a headache, back pain, menstrual cramps, or a fever, sip the tea slowly until the symptoms start to ease.
You can find willow bark loose tea and tea bags online. A small plastic sandwich baggie will do to keep the tea fresh.
Turmeric and Ginger
I have put these two together because they have similar properties and work really well when combined into a healing tonic tea. You can take grocery store turmeric and ginger powders and combine them in equal parts in a baggie to toss in your kit.
Turmeric and ginger both have anti-inflammatory properties. This is great for muscle strains and injuries. Turmeric and ginger also are renowned for their digestive benefits, especially when combined.
Medical News Today cites that ginger addresses nausea and vomiting, while turmeric helps to ease inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract.
In Chinese Medicine, compresses are made from ginger paste for treating kidney pain, and from turmeric paste for reducing swelling. These can be applied directly to the affected area, though they will temporarily discolor the skin.
Cayenne Pepper (Capsicum)
Either in its dried form, or fresh, cayenne has the ability to drain congested sinuses, improve circulation, and stop bleeding. It can be taken internally with food, or applied directly to a wound. This is an essential item where just a pinch will get the job done. You don’t need to pack a lot.
Have cayenne pepper on hand if you feel a cold coming on or you suspect a cardiac event and have no way to get emergency medical assistance. Dr. Axe explains that cayenne has been known to prevent heart attacks, in some situations, due to its ability to prevent blood clots.
The Aloe Vera plant is a succulent that grows in mostly tropical environments. It has been used medicinally by Latin American and African cultures for its soothing and healing qualities, as cited by the University of MD.
The gel inside the leaves can soothe burns and rashes, heal scrapes, and even be taken internally to cleanse the intestines. The latter should be approached with caution.
The chances of you getting burned, a rash, or scraped up while dealing with a natural disaster are probably 100%. Having aloe on hand is a good idea. You can buy individual packets of ointments containing aloe. You can also take the fresh leaves with you for the benefits of the pure gel.
Cut the leaf at its base and seal the cut end with some hot wax to prevent the gel from leeching out. Place the leaves in a clean jar or plastic baggie and store in your pack with the cut ends facing up.
Place a bit of the gel on the affected area for immediate relief and eventual healing. Here is a video showing how easy it is to extract the gel from the leaf.
We have left lavender for last because it is what you want and need at the end of a stressful day of survival. You are no good to yourself and the people with you if you are completely stressed out and haven’t slept. Lavender is very calming and can promote sleep.
Our favorite way to carry and use lavender is as aromatherapy. You can purchase a small bottle of therapeutic grade essential oil of lavender online. You simply open the bottle and inhale a bit. You can also put a few drops on a shirt or sleeping bag. You will be amazed at how relaxing this herb is.
Lavender also has disinfecting and repellent qualities. Add a little to your favorite survival soap, such as pure castile, for cleaning off the grime and nastiness that might have built up on your skin and hair. Put some drops on your clothing to repel insects.
Add These Medicinal Herbs to Your Bug Out Bag ASAP
When packing your bug out bag, consider adding these ultimate medicinal herbs for safe and natural remedies during an emergency situation. Of course, also pack any required prescription medications and a basic first aid kit.
We realize that you are trying to cram a lot of essentials into a small space. That is why the herbs mentioned here are fine in smaller and more concentrated amounts.
Try these remedies out at home first to make sure you understand the benefits, and to be sure you don’t react adversely. Be mindful of quality and freshness by replacing your herbs and essential oils periodically.