Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Cheap and Useful: Flaxseed

A while ago I bought some flaxseed from the Amish bulk store, 8 oz for $.50. An excellent price for a useful product. I had read about some neat uses for flaxseed in my copy of Heinerman's Encycloopedia of Healing Herbs and Spices. Wasn't long ago that I recommended that readers of this blog buy the book--it's that good and useful. The information I read in Heinerman's was what convinced me to buy some flaxseed, and I'm glad I did.

Here's a few bits from the book on uses for Flaxseed:

Remarkably Effective Laxative

According to Dr. Hans Fluck, a Swiss professor of pharmacology, 2 tsp. of flaxseed put into half a cup of hot water and allowed to swell for up to 4 hours and the mucilage and seeds swallowed together will produce a swelling bulk within the intestines which will provide a substantial bowel movement a few hours later.

Best Hand Lotion Around

An Oregon woman who suffered from dried, chapped hands for years had tried just about every kind of hand lotion on the market, but with no success. Then she stumbled onto flaxseed and now makes her own lotion, which she finds incredibly effective.

Her recipe calls first for whole or cracked flaxseed, about 3 round tbsp. to be soaked in 2 cups lukewarm water overnight. The next morning, the mixture is boild and strained to remove as much of the mucilage jell as possible; then the seeds are thrown away. A pint of apple cider vinegar is then added to the jell, along with 5 tbsp of glycern (purchased from any drugstore). The mixture is heated again to boiling and immediately removed from heat. Take an eggbeater and beat the mixture for a minute or so to keep the glycern from separating. Bottle. Dampen hands with solution morning and evening, thoroughly rubbing the skin and letting the air dry them. You will experience a greaseless silky feeling on your hands.

Eye Problem Corrected

The following was obtained from Violet Boyce of Logan, Utah. "I had a unique experience with flaxseed when I was a young girl. While on the train I got a cinder in my eye. I was unable to dislodge it and was suffering rather acutely. When I reached home my aunt put a single flaxseed under the lid. Sure enough the gooey sides collected the particle and it could be brushed out."

I made the hand lotion this morning, after soaking the flaxseed overnight. And it works--it left my hands feeling silky and soft. For the price of the flaxseed, glycerin and cider vinegar--none of which are expensive at all, I got a great hand lotion that works. I don't have chapped hands, but the skin is often pretty dry, especially in the winter. I added some drops of lavender essential oil so the wouldn't smell like vinegar and a couple of vitamin E drops as a preservative to the essential recipe.

Heinerman's book is full of interesting tidbits like that, usually cheap, useful and effective. I like that!


Susy said...

I'll have to try that lotion.

Space Crazy said...

I use a tablespoon in my oatmeal in the winter time and never suffer from dry skin. I live in Florida so I don’t need it in the summer but for the winter here it’s great for the skin.

Anonymous said...

sure wish I would have know about that lotion back when I was milking 30 goats every am and every pm! I used to have chaped hands all the time, even using udder balm..........

Patricia said...

Susy: You'll like it. I do!

Space: Hey, thanks--I'll try eating a tablespoon every day too. Good idea.

Charli: Better late than never?

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