Beeswax

Beeswax (Cera alba)

You will find Raw & Unfiltered Colorado Beeswax (from haefelihoney.com) in Mother Jai’s Lip Balm.

Beeswax (cera alba) is a natural wax produced by honeybees of the genus Apis. The wax is formed into scales by eight wax-producing glands in the abdominal segments of worker bees, which discard it in or at the hive. The hive workers collect and use it to form cells for honey storage and larval and pupal protection within the beehive. Chemically, beeswax consists mainly of esters of fatty acids and various long-chain alcohols.

Bees consume about eight times as much honey and fly 150,000 miles to create one pound of beeswax. The mixing of pollen oils into honeycomb wax turns the white wax into a yellow or brown color.

Beeswax is the only naturally occurring wax.  Vegetable waxes must be rendered from fruit or leaves like bayberries or candelilla leaves.  Other waxes like soy wax or paraffin are produced by a toxic chemical process.

Beeswax has been used since prehistory as the first plastic, as a lubricant and waterproofing agent, in lost wax casting of metals and glass, as a polish for wood and leather, for making candles, as an ingredient in cosmetics and as an artistic medium in encaustic painting. Beeswax is edible, having similar negligible toxicity to plant waxes, and is approved for food use in most countries and in the European Union under the E number E901.

Evidence has been found of prehistoric dentistry dating back to the Neolithic times reporting a 6,500-year-old human mandible from Slovenia whose left canine crown shows the traces of a filling with beeswax. While we don’t know all the facts, it’s thought that if the filling was done when the person was still alive, the intervention was likely aimed to relieve tooth sensitivity derived from either exposed dentine and/or the pain resulting from chewing on a cracked tooth.

Purified and bleached beeswax is used in the production of food, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals. The three main types of beeswax products are yellow, white, and beeswax absolute. Yellow beeswax is the crude product obtained from the honeycomb, white beeswax is bleached or filtered yellow beeswax, and beeswax absolute is yellow beeswax treated with alcohol. In food preparation, it is used as a coating for cheese; by sealing out the air, protection is given against spoilage (mold growth).

Beeswax may also be used as a food additive E901, in small quantities acting as a glazing agent, which serves to prevent water loss, or used to provide surface protection for some fruits. Soft gelatin capsules and tablet coatings may also use E901. Beeswax is also a common ingredient of natural chewing gum. The wax monoesters in beeswax are poorly hydrolyzed in the guts of humans and other mammals, so they have insignificant nutritional value. Some birds, such as honeyguides, can digest beeswax. Beeswax is the main diet of wax moth larvae.

Find 42 Ways to Use Beeswax at Home HERE.

Beeswax Benefits & Uses

Clears Acne: Beeswax is one of the most well-known home remedies for acne. It has strong antiseptic, healing and anti-inflammatory properties, making it effective in the treatment of acne, in particular because it contains vitamin A. It’s also an excellent skin softener and emollient that helps maintain a smooth skin texture after acne elimination. The combination of skin care applications, a healthy diet and daily exercise is the best way to control and prevent acne.

Dermatitis, Psoriasis and Eczema: Beeswax is a great choice for many skin conditions. A honey, beeswax and olive oil mixture is useful in the treatment of diaper dermatitis, psoriasis and eczema.

Heals Dry, Cracked Lips: The natural moisturizers in beeswax make it the perfect lip balm. If you suffer from cracked or chapped lips, topical applications of beeswax and a few other ingredients can provide some much-needed relief. It’s easy to make your own lip balm by combining it with coconut oil, honey, vitamin E oil, and your favorite essential oils, such as orange, peppermint, lavender or lemon.

Moisturizes Skin: Beeswax is an amazing way to moisturize the skin and is commonly found in skin care products and cosmetics. It can help protect and repair rough, dry or chapped skin because it has the ability to lock in moisture. This wax has rich vitamin A content and emollient properties, which soften and rehydrate the skin as well as aiding in the healthy development of cellular reconstruction. Another benefit to its use is that because it is noncomedogenic, it won’t clog pores.

Reduces Stretch Marks: collagen is a major extracellular matrix component that’s very important in wound healing. Since beeswax contains vitamin A, which is helpful in collagen production, it can greatly benefit the reduction of stretch marks. By combining beeswax, royal jelly, shea or cocoa butter, grapeseed oil, and coconut oil, you have a natural remedy for preventing and treating stretch marks while helping improve collagen levels simultaneously.

Relieves Pain and Is Anti-Inflammatory: As medicine, beeswax has been studied in the use of relieving pain and inflammation and has mild anti-swelling effects. A 2014 study published in the Korean Journal of Internal Medicine reports that it was used to helped relieve inflammation caused by osteoarthritis.

According to Research Conducted There is Insufficient Evidence for

Small tears in the anus (anal fissures). Early research suggests that applying a mixture of beeswax, honey, and olive oil to the affected area for 12 hours reduces pain, bleeding, and itching due to anal fissures.

Diaper rash. Early research suggests that applying a mixture of beeswax, honey, and olive oil to the affected area four times daily for 7 days reduces symptoms of diaper rash.

Hemorrhoids. Early research suggests that applying a mixture of beeswax, honey, and olive oil to the affected area for 12 hours reduces pain, bleeding, and itching due to hemorrhoids.

Ringworm (tinea corporis). Early research suggests that applying a mixture of beeswax, honey, and olive oil to the affected area three times daily for 4 weeks improves ringworm.

Jock itch (tinea cruris). Early research suggests that applying a mixture of beeswax, honey, and olive oil to the affected area three times daily for 4 weeks improves jock itch.

Fungal skin infection (tinea versicolor). Early research suggests that applying a mixture of beeswax, honey, and olive oil to the affected area three times daily for 4 weeks improves a fungal skin infection called tinea versicolor.

Side Effects & Safety

Beeswax is LIKELY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth as food or as a medicine, or when applied directly to the skin.

Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking beeswax if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

References:

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beeswax
  2. https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-305/beeswax
  3. https://joybileefarm.com/things-to-make-with-beeswax/
  4. https://draxe.com/nutrition/article/beeswax/
  5. https://wellnessmama.com/3765/homemade-lotion-recipe/
  6. https://www.beepods.com/10-helpful-uses-beeswax/
  7. https://wellnessmama.com/124235/beeswax-uses/

Basil Leaf

Basil Leaf (Ocimum basilicum)

By Castielli – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7133704

Basil Leaf

Sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum) is most known for its culinary uses. It’s highly nutritious with an abundance of vitamin A (as carotenoids), vitamin K, and vitamin C. It’s also rich in magnesium, iron, potassium, and calcium. The fragrant herb Basil is best known as one of the most versatile herbs to use in Mediterranean and Eastern cooking.

½ cup of fresh chopped basil (or about eight tablespoons) has roughly:

  • 2 calories
  • 0 fat, protein, sugar or fiber
  • 56 milligrams vitamin A (24 percent)
  • 88 milligrams vitamin K (108 percent)
  • 0.24 milligrams manganese (12 percent)
  • 4 milligrams vitamin C (8 percent)

Health Benefits of Basil Leaf

Adaptogen: helps the body adapt to stress and to normalize the harmful effects of stressors on bodily processes.

Antibacterial: The basil essential oil was active against every strain of E-coli it was tested with. It was also shown to have anti-microbial properties that were found to fight mold, yeast, and bacteria.

Anticancer: Clinical studies published in Nutrition and Cancer also show that basil contains phytochemicals, which can help naturally prevent cancer, including chemical-induced skin, liver, oral and lung cancers. Basil is able to increase antioxidant activity, positively alter gene expressions, induce cancerous-cell apoptosis (death of harmful cells) and stop cancerous tumors from spreading.

Antioxidant & Anti-Inflammatory: as an antioxidant and help the body get rid of free radicals. Sweet basil is an excellent source of antioxidants such as phenolic compounds and polyphenols. Research published in 2012 showed that these antioxidants make basil a great choice for helping with inflammatory diseases. Because oxidative stress and inflammation are often present with serious illnesses like diabetes and heart disease, this research is promising for combating the increase in these health problems.

Antimicrobial: against a wide range of bacteria, yeasts, molds and viruses. This means you can add protection against the candida virus and various forms of skin irritations to the long list of proven benefits of basil.

Herbal Remedies with Basil

Calming the Stomach: One-half teaspoon of dried or fresh basil leaf in water can often help soothe indigestion and alleviate feelings of fullness.

Coughing and Colds: chew fresh leaves to calm coughing or make a calming tea of dried basil to help soothe illness.

Facial Steam for Headache: A facial steam with dried basil leaf can help alleviate a headache. Add a tablespoon of dried basil leaf to 2 cups of boiling water in a large pot. Carefully lean over the pot, cover head with a towel and breathe in the steam for 5-10 minutes until headache starts to subside.

Stings and Bites: If you are working outside and get bitten or stung by an insect and don’t have any plantain growing nearby, chewing up a basil leaf and applying to the bite will help relieve the pain and draw out the venom.

Blood Sugar: There is some evidence that basil can help level out blood sugar if consumed regularly and drank as a juice or tea.

Stress Reduction: One herbalist suggests adding 2 cups of strong basil leaf tea to a warm bath to help reduce stress and facilitate relaxation.

Basil Essential Oil Benefits

Basil Linalool Essential Oil is one of the finest oils available for calming and focusing the mind, and is also useful for easing tension in the head and neck. It is preferred as a mind-clearing oil for spiritual meditation. Due to the high linalool content (which makes this oil very relaxing) you can also use basil to help ease the transition into bedtime. Basil also can help uplift your mood.

Cardiovascular Health: can help the muscles that control blood vessel function to contract and relax, promoting healthy blood pressure. Benefits of basil include the ability to help prevent dangerous platelet aggregation, clumping together of blood platelets that can form a clot within the arteries and cause cardiac arrest.

Cold & Flu: add one to two drops to a steam bath, or make a homemade vapor rub using eucalyptus oil and basil oil that can massaged into the chest to open up your nasal passages.

Detoxification: sickly rats were given basil extract over a period of five days, they experienced significant improvements in producing detoxifying enzymes, higher antioxidant defenses and a reduction of fat buildup in the liver that can cause liver disease.

Fights Depression: Benefits of basil also apply to those with mental disorders or mood-related illnesses, including depression and anxiety. Basil is also considered an antidepressant by some since it can positively impact brain function within the adrenal cortex, helping stimulate neurotransmitters that regulate the hormones responsible for making us happy and energetic.

Insect Repellent: research has shown that the volatile oils found in basil can repel mosquitoes and help to prevent bug bites. To make a homemade bug spray or lotion, dilute several drops of basil essential oils with carrier oil and massage into skin or swollen bites as needed.

Mood Enhancer: Inhaling basil can help restore mental alertness and fight fatigue since it’s naturally a stimulant that works on the nervous system and adrenal cortex. Many people find it beneficial for reducing symptoms like sluggishness, brain fog and poor moods that accompany adrenal fatigue or chronic fatigue. Diffuse basil essential oil throughout your home or inhale it directly from the bottle. You can also combine a couple drops of basil oil with a carrier oil like jojoba and put it on your wrists for an instant pick-me-up.

Muscle Relaxant: you can rub a few drops of basil essential oil along with coconut oil into painful, swollen muscles or joints. To further help relax tense areas and feel immediate relief, try soaking in a warm bath with Epsom salts and a couple drops of lavender oil and basil oil.

Stress Relief: Basil oil is known to be uplifting and renewing, which makes it useful for lowering symptoms of anxiety, fear or nervousness. Used for aromatherapy for centuries to help people deal with racing thoughts and overwhelming feelings, you can burn basil oil at home to relax and unwind. This can also work quickly for natural headache relief. Massage one or two drops with a carrier oil into your feet or over your adrenals nightly to reduce stress.

Basil Safety & Precautions

While basil is generally considered a safe herb in culinary amounts, medicinal use of basil is considered “possibly unsafe” for children and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Keep in mind also that basil essential oil (or any essential oil) is very concentrated and merits special precautions. Because basil could reduce blood pressure, in theory, it could cause low blood pressure. Consult your healthcare professional before taking basil (or any herb) medicinally.

References:

  1. https://wellnessmama.com/5505/basil-leaf/
  2. https://www.planttherapy.com/basil-linalool-essential-oil?v=537
  3. https://draxe.com/nutrition/herbs/benefits-of-basil/
  4. https://www.aromaweb.com/essential-oils/basil-oil.asp
  5. https://draxe.com/essential-oils/basil-essential-oil/
  6. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/basil-essential-oil.html

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Used by Mother Jai to determine the best course of therapy and support. To ensure you receive holistic (whole person) care.

Baking Soda

Baking Soda (Sodium bicarbonate)

You can find Baking Soda in Mother Jai’s Toothpowder and Mudd Mask.

The baking soda chemical formula aka the sodium bicarbonate formula is NaHCO3. This baking soda formula represents its composition of of sodium ions and bicarbonate ions. It’s a substance known for its alkalizing effects thanks to a baking soda ph of 9.

In its most natural form sodium bicarbonate is also known as nahcolite, a mineral that is found in various locations around the world. It is commercially mined in areas of California, Colorado, Botswana and Kenya. There are also large deposits in Mexico, Uganda, Turkey and Mexico.

Baking soda, also known as bicarbonate of soda (or sodium bicarbonate), can do some major things. Its superpowers come from a two-letter term: pH. That stands for “potential (or power) of hydrogen” to make something either an acid or a base (alkaline). Baking soda is an alkaline substance. When it mixes with an acid, it alters the pH level. That’s why it can quickly soothe an upset stomach or cover a bad smell.

Throughout history, it has been used as a rising agent when baking. It’s 100 percent sodium bicarbonate; so, when mixed with acid, it makes bubbles and gives off a carbon dioxide gas, causing the dough to rise. Baking powder and soda are similar yet different since baking powder is made up of sodium bicarbonate and one or multiple acid salts.

Using Baking Soda

Air Freshening: commercial air fresheners don’t eliminate odors they mask them with chemical compounds that mask or cover up odors. Baking soda is a safe alternative that interacts with odor molecules and breaks them up, neutralizing them. Make your own air freshener – you need: A small jar, 1/3 cup baking soda, 10–15 drops of your favorite essential oils, piece of cloth or paper, string or ribbon. Add the baking soda and essential oils to the jar. Cover it with the cloth or paper, and then secure it in place with the string. When the scent starts to fade, give the jar a shake.

Antifungal & Antibacterial: Baking soda has been shown to kill off bacteria including Streptococcus mutans, which is a type of bacteria associated with tooth decay. It is also effective against various fungal groups including yeasts, dermatophytes and molds that cause skin and nail infections in humans.

Bathroom Cleaner: Baking soda comes in handy because it whitens and disinfects many bathroom surfaces. Make a paste using baking soda and a bit of water. Using a sponge or a cloth, rub the mixture thoroughly onto the surface you want to clean. Wipe down the surface 15–20 minutes later with a damp cloth.

Bug Bites & Stings: it isn’t good for everyday use on your skin, it can soothe the redness, itching, and stinging that are signs of a mild reaction to an insect bite. You can also make your own paste of one-part baking soda to three parts water. This also works for poison ivy and rashes. ½ cup in the bathtub and soak for 20 minutes, rinse off before getting out.

Chemotherapy Support: research does show that it can help some cancer treatments work better. Some chemotherapy drugs need alkaline conditions. Others become more toxic in an acid environment. Mouth and throat changes are common chemo side effects. If this happens to you, rinse your mouth three times daily with a mixture of 1 cup warm water, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/8 teaspoon salt, followed by a rinse with plain water.

Deodorizing: When you add baking soda and change the pH balance, the odors in your fridge or your carpet come into a neutral state. Bad smells come from either strong acids (think sour milk) or bases (like spoiled fish). Sprinkle it everywhere to reduce odors. Mix with coconut oil and arrowroot powder for an all-natural deodorant.

Food Cleansing: Many people worry about pesticides on foods. Pesticides are used to prevent crops from damage by insects, germs, rodents and weeds. Interestingly, recent research has found that soaking fruits and veggies in a baking soda wash is the most effective way to remove pesticides without peeling them. One study found that soaking fruit in a solution of baking soda and water for 12–15 minutes removed nearly all of the pesticides.

Heartburn & Indigestion: Add 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda to a glass of water to zap acid in your stomach. Don’t take baking soda within 2 hours of other medications. When the baking soda lowers stomach acid, it can slow the rate at which your body absorbs some medicines and change the way others work. Don’t give it to a child under 6 unless your pediatrician tells you to.

Inflammation: most inflammation in the body is caused by an acidic environment. Using baking soda can help balance pH of the blood thus reducing the pH of the body, which in turn reduces water retention (edema) related to the body’s response to an acidic environment. The less water retained by the body to protect itself from acids, the less swelling and inflammation and associated pain there is.

Kidney Disease: A daily dose of sodium bicarbonate can help people whose kidneys can no longer remove enough acid from their blood. It helps balance the pH in the blood, reducing the acid content of the body and creating an alkaline environment. Sodium bicarbonate helps in decreasing stone formation and removing of material that causes the kidney stones.

Kitchen Scrub: plain baking soda and essential oils if desired on a cloth or sponge, gently scrubs surfaces without scratching and while disinfecting.

Mouth Care: tooth decay is caused by acid loving bacteria that live and excrete plaque on teeth and gums. The pH balancing effects of baking soda help prevent bacterial growth by reducing the acids in the mouth. All it takes is ½ teaspoon in 8oz water to make a great, breath freshening, mouth rinse.

Silver Polish: Baking soda is a handy alternative to commercial silver polishes. For this you will need: An aluminum baking pan or a baking dish lined with aluminum foil, 1 cup of boiling water, 1 tablespoon of baking soda, 1/2 cup of white vinegar, add the baking soda to the aluminum baking pan and slowly, pour in the vinegar. Next, pour in the boiling water and then place the silver in the baking pan. Almost immediately, the tarnish should begin to disappear, and you can remove most silverware from the pan within thirty seconds. However, heavily tarnished silverware may need to sit in the mixture for up to a minute.

Skin Care: baking soda is a great exfoliator for face, feet and joints; it helps by reducing acids in skin and balancing pH of the surface, and gently removing dead skin that can clog pores and cause wrinkles. Overuse can cause alkalization of the skin. The skin needs to remain slightly acidic to be strong and healthy. Skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, toenail fungus, ring worm, body odor and allergic reactions are all caused by bacteria and/or an acidic environment. Both of which are eradicated by using baking soda internally and/or externally.

Cautions

Milk-alkali syndrome: Excess consumption of sodium bicarbonate may cause health ailments such as milk-alkali syndrome. An overdose of baking soda may also cause vomiting, diarrhea, muscle weakness and spasms. Care must be taken while consuming products that contain baking soda. It is advisable to consult your health specialist if you have blood pressure related ailments, kidney disease, are pregnant or breastfeeding as they may have side effects on consumption.

References:

  1. https://draxe.com/nutrition/article/baking-soda-uses/
  2. https://www.organicfacts.net/baking-soda.html
  3. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/baking-soda-benefits-uses
  4. https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/baking-soda-do-dont
  5. https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-1470/sodium-bicarbonate