6 Natural Ways to Protect Your Health


(Family Features) Natural and plant-based remedies have been around for centuries, and for everyday treatments like minor cuts, scrapes and rashes, they can have real benefits. In fact, the global herbal medicine market is expected to reach $342 billion by 2030, according to a forecast by Research and Markets.

In North America, a green movement is spurring a large share of this growth, with consumers more inclined toward natural and plant-based medicines. Concerns about side effects, long-term impact and safety also affect the choices people are making when it comes to treating their medical concerns.

“Natural and plant-based remedies have been around for centuries, treating everything from common cold symptoms to dressing wounds and caring for injuries,” said Dr. Billy Goldberg, a New York Times’ bestselling author and emergency room physician. “As people increasingly turn to more natural tried-and-true ingredients, some companies are taking note and beginning to incorporate them into products that provide the healing power of nature.”

Goldberg and the first-aid experts at CURAD, which have made adhesive bandages since 1951, offer these suggestions for natural common ingredients that can help protect your health:

Vitamin E – Studies by the National Institute on Health have shown that vitamin E helps soothe and support skin during the healing process. Vitamin E may also help promote immunity and prevent arterial blood clots.

Aloe Vera – Few things soothe sunburn like aloe vera. With analgesic, anti-inflammatory and soothing properties, aloe vera gel helps reduce pain and inflammation. Also helpful in the healing process of cuts and scrapes, the CURAD Naturals line of adhesive bandages are infused with aloe vera in the wound pad and surface of the bandage, which is enriched with the antioxidant vitamin E to help soothe and moisturize skin.

Garlic – Used for centuries for wound healing, garlic extract has been found to improve healing time and decrease rate of infection. Ingesting garlic may also head off symptoms of the common cold and help reduce blood pressure.

Baking Soda – Bicarbonate of soda, commonly known as baking soda, can be used for more than baking. From removing stains to cleaning teeth and more, it can also be used to help treat a variety of wounds. In addition to being an odor absorber, it can be applied to insect stings and bites, such as those from bees or mosquitoes.

Whether making a paste using baking soda and water then applying to the bite or using an option like CURAD Naturals adhesive bandages featuring baking soda, the chemical compound can help soothe skin. In addition to absorbing wound odor, the bandages provide skin-friendly comfort and stretch with a four-sided seal to keep dirt and germs out.

Honey – Sweet and highly acidic, honey’s antioxidant, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties make it a good choice for dressing wounds since it encourages healing and prevents infections. Honey may also help soothe coughs.

Charcoal – Activated charcoal may have an antibacterial effect by absorbing harmful microbes from wounds. Similarly, it can be used to treat poisoning or drug overdose and may help with digestive problems. It’s also thought to play a role in lowering cholesterol and improving kidney function, and some dental care products use it as a whitening agent.

Learn more about natural health care and first-aid products at CURAD.com.

Photos courtesy of Getty Images