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Grow Your Own Drugs - Easy Recipes for Natural Remedies and Beauty Fixes by James Wong Books in Review
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Grow Your Own Drugs - Easy Recipes for Natural Remedies and Beauty Fixes
by James Wong
Reader's Digest
ISBN 978-1-60652-107-6
Published February 2010 - Hardcover - 224 pages - $19.95

Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could all grow our own "drugs"?  What a saving at the pharmacy!  Author James Wong, also an ethnobotantist, says he's "trained to look beyond the aesthetic and to see plants for what they really are — the chemical factories that make all life on Earth possible".  After all, plants give us oxygen to breathe and have been used for thousands of years as "medicine" in many cultures.  It's important not to take over your doctor's work and start prescribing your own herbs and plants.  Wong offers advice on making herbal remedies as well as lotions and creams.  You don't need acres of property to grow plants as many will do well in pots, both inside and outside.  Some of the herbs one can grow in your own herb garden (or in an array of pots on a windowsill) include Chamomile (good for indigestion, easing tension, and skin irritations); Lavender (calms, eases pain); Lemon Balm (soothes nervous tension and anxiety, promotes sleep, and speeds the healing of cold sores), and Sage (good for coughs, colds, and hot flushes).  It's not a case of having green thumbs either, as most plants will do well with just a little attention here and there.  Some of the remedies we're offered in this book are for Digestive Orders (bad breath, heartburn, and indigestion, constipation, etc.); Skin Complaints (athlete's foot, sunburn); Aches and Pains (water retention, aching muscles, "women's stuff" which includes morning and motion sickness, cystitis), and Face and Body.  Wong also gives us the Top 100 Medicinal Plants under these categories: Fruit, Vegetables, Trees and Shrubs, Roots, Herbs, Flowers, and Leaves where each item has an identifying photo — we've all seen many of these either in our own gardens, in friends' gardens, or at the store.  You can save a fortune by using some of these clever remedies.
Beautifully illustrated.
Conclusion - A fantastic option, especially for those looking for alternatives to chemical medicines.

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