Aside from making dinner taste great, herbs naturally help lift your mood and can restore your body's well-being. Galina Roofener, a licensed acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist at the Cleveland Clinic's Center for Integrative Medicine, gives us the rundown on four herbs and their natural healing properties.
Use it: Add this herb extract to your bath at night to temper your nerves and promote sleep. "Lavender has a mild tranquilizing effect that soothes the mind," Roofener says.
Use it: The elements of peppermint have a calming effect on the mind and body, and also work as a decongestant. "Peppermint allows you to more easily process your emotions because it has a cooling effect on your internal organs," she says.
Use it: Sprinkling a teaspoon of cinnamon powder into hot tea may be the key to your heart, which traditional Chinese medicine believes emotionally harbors joy. "Cinnamon restores the heart by physically opening up its channels," Roofener says. "That's why cinnamon cookies make us happy."
Herb: Chai Hu
Use it: This Chinese herb, prescribed as either granules, pills or reconstituted as tea, combats the type of stress fueled by frustration. "Frustration is harbored in the liver," Roofener says. "Chai Hu helps address chronic stress by promoting free flow of the liver's function."