Sore Throat Slayer – Seriously

I don’t know about you, but the feeling of a sore throat coming on will send me straight into concern, much quicker than anything else.

Nausea? Probably a tummy bug – throw some Colloidal Silver down the hatch and it’ll be over in six hours.

Headache? Probably dehydrated. Drink water.

Cough? Thanks immune system – you’ve detected something coming down my throat, so you’re pushing back. Nothing to worry about here.

But a sore throat? Oy vey. Rarely does anything not come from a sore throat. While seasonal allergies may cause a tickle or scratch, it’s pretty certain if your throat feels sore, you are most likely dealing with a bacterial infection or some type of nasty virus. And in these moments, time is of the essence!

I am writing this blog because I’m thankfully on the other side of an intense attack of throat pain two days ago. As I prayed fervently to the Lord for rapid healing of what I could tell was not something as simple as allergies, a thought came to my mind. Treat it with oregano essential oil.

Now, I am fully aware of the benefits of oregano oil. The studies are not hard to find. It’s a very powerful antibacterial agent that is used frequently to battle bacterial infections. But I’m not the biggest essential oil person. I prefer full spectrum plants. But in that moment, I just knew this was a job for oregano oil. So I got busy.

The protocol was this: Drop 1 single drop of Oregano essential oil into 4 ounces of water. Stir well and gargle with this solution for at least 30 seconds. I made it 10 seconds before my lips felt like they were burning off and the taste was more than I could bear, but those 10 seconds were honorable and I sure would do it six more times in the next 24 hours.

I am not lying to you when I say within minutes of my first gargle, my throat pain went from a 10 to a 6 or 7. I gargled again later and I felt the pain literally reversing with every hour that went by. By the time I woke up the next day, my pain was at about a 3, and completely gone within 24 hours of my first application of the solution. I have always been a believer in essential oils, but not until this experience would I ever rave about them like I am now. They are POWERFUL tools!

I have worked with oils in the past, but primarily for scents in our salves and by way of aromatherapy in a diffuser or topically (Lavender essential oil on a warm wet cloth draped across your face is a LOVELY way to combat acute anxiety). We also carry essential oil rollers, which help with everything from energy to focus.

I’m on day 3 now of what I was certain was a pretty scary onset of a virus. My head felt like it was going to explode, my fatigue was insanely difficult to manage (working moms can I get an amen!?), and with that sore throat on top of everything, I just knew I’d be down for the count for at least a week. Within 24 hours, I was back on my feet, feeling excellent and like I was never feeling bad to begin with. Besides a lingering cough, I feel EXCELLENT – and have never navigated an illness so rapidly before!

Here is the protocol I did over the last two days:

Gargle Oregano essential oil once every four hours
Gargle Colloidal Silver twice daily
Take 1 tablespoon of Elderberry every six hours
I took two Reishi capsules – just because I love Reishi and it’s great for immune support, but this wouldn’t be considered pertinent.
3 dropperfulls of Immune Booster twice daily
and 3 dropperfuls of Respiratory Support 3x daily

Please take all bullet points lightly – there is no rigid outline or instructions you have to stick to when it comes to plant medicine. I always give information like this as a general guideline – just do plenty of things, plenty often! And most importantly, don’t take any of this as medical advice.

Stay well, friends!

A Christian’s perspective on Marijuana

I’m going to start off this blog by recognizing the fact that Jesus Christ is a lot like Mr. Clean. The day you accept Him as your savior, He starts scrubbing you clean from the inside out – such is the work of the Holy Spirit. I have experienced radical transformation over the last year that I’ve walked with Him, so my thoughts on this topic could change as I grow. If they do, I’ll update this webpage. As it stands today, this is a topic I’m extremely passionate about and this blog is long overdue. Here is my take on marijuana use as a born-again Christian.

I’m a big fan of Jesus Christ, but Paul the Apostle comes in a close second to men I look to for solid spiritual advice. Makes sense, since Paul spent three years with Jesus after the resurrection, being trained and equipped for Paul’s own ministry to come.

As Christians, we are called to be holy. We are called to be obedient to our father and to obey the great commandment: love God and love one another. Unlike the jews prior to Christ’s death and resurrection, we Christians are under no law, because Jesus Christ did the work for us. He defeated death to save our souls; and in addition to eternal life with Him, those of us who believe are given the gift of the Holy Spirit while here on Earth.

The Holy Spirit does a lot of things for us – but one of the biggest things He does which is relevant to this topic is that He convicts us of our sins. If you have a healthy relationship with the Lord and you have an abundant prayer life and you spend time in His word, your discernment should be trustworthy. You should know whether or not what you’re doing is a sin – you will both feel it and know it. In addition to convicting us, the Holy Spirit empowers us to serve God. If my marijuana use is a stumbling block in my service to the Lord, the Holy Spirit will convict me of that sin. Guaranteed.

In the book of Galatians, Paul tells us that there is no law against such things as gentleness, self control, faithfulness, and peace and patience, among other virtues. He also reminds us in his letter to Corinth that everything is permitted for us in Jesus Christ – but not everything is beneficial.

What actually defines sin for those of us who have accepted Christ as our savior? If everything is permitted, how can something be considered sinful? I don’t think the Lord purposefully confuses us, but rather trusts us to use our discernment as we surrender to the Holy Spirit about what may cause us to step out of His will for our lives. And truth be told, I think that is different for each and every one of us.

In 1 Corinthians 6:12, Paul specifically indicates that we are not to be mastered by anything. He goes on to say in the same letter that everything we do must be done for the glory of God.

My friends all know me as the really passionate “Bible thumping” friend. My Christian friends love it, and my non-Christian friends tolerate it. Even my customers at work who don’t know me super personally – they are aware, if they come in, God is going to get brought up during conversation. Jesus is truly the light of my life, and I am not afraid to share about that. I live a life dedicated to my father in Heaven. I crave His presence. I start every day in a posture of prayer and submission to Him, and I seek His counsel in every decision I make. Now, in terms of obedience, there’s been more than a time or two I’ve had to learn a lesson the hard way, but as I grow in my faith and I see that obedience produces more faith and more blessings, I get better each day about following His lead. Glory to God, He is so good!

But I digress.

Marijuana in and of itself is not inherently sinful. It is a plant that our creator put here for a reason. Some plants don’t serve medicinal purposes for humans, and some plants will even kill you if you eat or consume them; so we know not all plants were put here for us as much as the eco system as a whole. But marijuana is not a plant that serves a primary purpose of supporting the eco system. Marijuana is highly medicinal (for both people and animals), and I see it help hundreds of people and pets who walk into my store every year.

So when, then, does marijuana use become sinful?

When it becomes more important than the fruitful works you are called to complete in Christ Jesus.

We all have things in life that can consume us if we don’t stay focused on the Lord. Some of us eat too much when we’re sad or stressed – that’s a sin. Some of us drink too much when we’re angry. That’s a sin. Some of us use foul language and trash the name of someone we love when they hurt our feelings – that is a sin as well, and I am the chief! (Told you I was a big fan of Paul 😎)

If the first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is use marijuana because I can’t imagine my morning without the head change brought on by THC, this is a sin. This dependence – or addiction – grieves the Holy Spirit. If I’m seeking that head change to start my day, then where am I leaving room for the Lord to fill my soul? Where does God fall into my list of priorities? Seeking Him should remain before and above all things.

King David writes in Psalm 46:1 “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” and boy is he right! The Lord is my strength, HE is the one I turn to in times of fear, or sadness or angst. He is the one who softens my heart against unforgiveness and extreme discord. Jesus is my safe place, my resting comfort and my best friend. This is the relationship we are called to have with Him.

If I find myself struggling to have that full dependence on God, but I find that marijuana fills those needs for me – then it is time to admit my marijuana use is sinful.

Paul tells us not to be slaves to wine – but drinking wine in a fruitful fashion is not prohibited in any text of the word of God.

And in my humble opinion as a lover of Jesus Christ and follower of His teachings, I truly believe the same goes for marijuana.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”
Galatians 5:22-23

Combatting Anxiety

Anxiety is one of the top reasons people stop in at ABĒCA Naturals, and we are always so glad when we get to help a new friend!

Because a lot of people do not like taking prescriptions for their disorders, they often opt for alternate medicine for their anxiety. Alternate medicine can include anything from aromatherapy to acupuncture, herbal remedies and meditation. These things will work well when the anxiety is a general diagnosis and there is no severe underlying depression that is causing the anxiety.

We all get anxious once in a while – we wouldn’t be human if we did not have some anxiety in our lives! But for some people, anxiety can be crippling. Some of our visitors report being unable to get through their day without breaking down completely, and some even refuse to go out into public. That’s why we are honored when folks make the brave choice to come see us. We are here to help!

While some cases of extreme anxiety – especially anxiety with an additional diagnosis of depression – are best treated with intense therapy and even medications, the products and advice we offer here at ABĒCA Naturals is often enough to change the game entirely for those who once felt completely hopeless.

Herbal supplements

Kava root is one of the most popular herbs we carry here for anxiety. While we recommend only using it as needed and in small doses, we find that it has a sedative effect that quickly counteracts hyperactivity due to anxiety.

Valerian and Passionflower are also helpful, and can be taken daily to help keep feelings of anxiousness at bay. We work with these herbs alongside Skullcap and a few others in our product called Nervous Tension.  

When taking liquid extracts, dosing will vary by person. As a general rule of thumb, take 1-2 dropperfuls twice daily. Please do not hesitate to message us with detailed questions so we can help you most efficiently!

Other types of supplements

Cannabis is another option for some, but not all. Some folks have personal convictions about psychoactive herbs, so this article may be worth checking out when it comes to marijuana use. For the benefits of Cannabis without the head change, try our Full Spectrum CBD oil and if you want CBD without even a marginal amount of THC, Isolate can be a good choice. Again, don’t hesitate to reach out to discuss which one is right for you!

GABA is another popular choice for those who need something to calm them down but without a drowsy effect. GABA is an amino acid which has an inhibitory effect on neurotransmitters. This is a fancy way of saying it quiets down the circus going on inside your brain during moments of high stress or anxiety! GABA is a popular supplement our visitors like to purchase for the whole family.

Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is the art of inhaling essential oils to trigger responses in the brain. Aromatherapy can be enjoyed by diffusing oils in a diffuser, warming a wet rag and laying it over the face, or carried in an oil and used topically. Popular scents of aromatherapy include Lavender and Bergamot. We carry a roller bottle by Humble Collective that works well when applied topically. For more education on essential oils, we host those types of classes at ABĒCA Naturals a couple times a year, so make sure you are signed up for our email list to be notified of the next class!

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is a popular method of alternative therapy that can help with all sorts of problems, including anxiety and depression. Acupuncture has been around for thousands of years and can help heal aches, pains and even headaches. Some people who suffer from depression or anxiety swear by this healing method, which has its roots in ancient China. We recommend visiting our friends at Aiken Wellness Spa for services including acupuncture, light therapy, and more.

Meditation

Meditation is yet another way that you can help yourself overcome frequent feelings of anxiety. It is good for finding peace of mind when the noise of the world seems to never quiet down.  Meditation is something that has been around for thousands of years and is often associated with Hinduism or Buddhism, but the art of meditation is not exclusive to any religion. In fact, as a Christian, I meditate daily on the word of God. He tells us that if we meditate on His word day and night, we will be “like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,” and that has been so true in my life. In today’s society so obsessed with productivity and social status, meditation is a wonderful way to escape it all and re-center to find peace.

For general anxiety, a good herbal regimen and spiritual practices are often just the ticket for combatting this disorder and finding a new joy in day to day life. Come visit us at 503 W. Martintown Rd so we can discuss your options and encourage you. We are here to see you well!