With its intense scent, lavender not only keeps the linen cupboard free from moths but is above all good for your health. Lavender was discovered as a medicinal plant as early as the Middle Ages and is still widely used in natural medicine today. The blue plant contains active ingredients with healing and relaxing properties, such as tannins, flavonoids, and a very valuable essential oil. It is obtained by distilling the flowers. The real Angustifolia lavender contains more than a hundred active ingredients – other types have little effect or are even poisonous, for example, the French lavender.
A natural remedy and approved medicinal product
Lavender is a natural remedy for anxiety and stress. When we are stressed, our body produces more of the hormone cortisol. Just five minutes of intense sniffing of the lavender scent is enough to lower the cortisol concentration again. Lavender is now an approved medicinal product and is mainly used for inner restlessness, nervous exhaustion, difficulty falling asleep, and also for the treatment of anxiety disorders.
- Lavender oil baths are particularly helpful against restlessness and problems falling asleep. For a relaxing bath, infuse about 20 grams of flowers with boiling water and add to the tub after ten minutes.
- A drop of lavender oil rubbed on the temples can relieve tension headaches.
- A massage with lavender oil helps with tense muscles.
- Experts recommend lavender soft capsules against claustrophobia or fear of flying.
Healthy Lavender Tea
A tea can be prepared from fresh or dried flowers, which has a calming effect, reduces fever, and helps with digestive problems. Hot water is poured over the dried blossoms and they have to steep covered for ten minutes so that the valuable lavender oils are transferred to the tea water. Pour boiling water over a teaspoon of flowers and drink the tea three times a day. The brew can also be used externally: it helps against impurities and supports wound healing because lavender has an antimicrobial effect.
Dried flowers against moths
Dried lavender helps repel pesky insects like moths. Harvest the lavender when the flower is fully developed – only then does it retain its active ingredients when drying. Then tie the stems together and hang with the flowers down in a shady spot. Let everything dry well, then carefully rub off each flower and fill it into small cotton bags.
Cosmetic products with hybrid lavender lavender
Most cosmetic products such as soaps, lotions, shower gels, sprays, or candles contain very little or no real lavender. This is often the hybrid lavender Lavendin. This commercially grown lavender has lower fragrance and active ingredient qualities. If you value a soothing or even healing effect, you should only use products labeled “Lavandula Angustifolia” or “Officinalis”. Even the pot from the flower shop should only be harvested if it is definitely medicinal lavender. If you only want a little scent, you can tie a bouquet of it or use products with hybrid lavender.
Use lavender in the kitchen
Lavender can be used in many ways in the kitchen:
- For delicious vinegar, bottle lavender flowers and pour white wine vinegar over them. Leave tightly closed for three weeks. Then strain off the blossoms and the lavender vinegar is ready for a delicious salad dressing.
- Lavender seasoning salt: Grind fresh peppercorns, chop dried tomatoes, and rosemary. Finely chop dried lavender flowers. Mix everything with coarse salt. Delicious on grilled lamb or with buttered bread and radishes.
- Lavender Jelly: Boil a cup of lavender blossoms in a liter of apple juice and leave overnight. Then cook for four minutes with the juice of one lemon and a kilo of preserving sugar and fill immediately while hot. The jelly tastes good as a flowery spread or with fish and meat.