African Herbal Healing Secrets

The Health Benefits of Baobab Part 3: “Nature’s Multivitamin”

In this, the third and final episode in his series on the health benefits of baobab, Gus (the African Plant Hunter) dons an uncharacteristically colourful shirt to talk us through the vitamins and minerals that make this fruit such a remarkable, immune-boosting powerhouse. In addition to his plant-hunting activities, Gus also runs a baobab-producing business …

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The Health Benefits of Baobab Part 2: More Diversity in Your Intestinal Microbiome

Not all tummy bugs are bad. In fact, the bacteria that make up our intestinal microbiome are critical to our overall health. In this episode, Gus (the African Plant Hunter) explores the role of baobab in promoting a healthy microbiome. He shares the story of the Hadza, a hunter gatherer society in Tanzania, whose intestinal …

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The Health Benefits of Baobab Fruit Part 1: Moderating the Glycaemic Response

In 2013, researchers from the Oxford Brookes Centre for Nutrition and Health published a paper on the remarkable impact of baobab fruit powder on glycaemic response. In this episode, Gus (the African Plant Hunter) delves deeper into the properties if this extraordinary African superfruit and investigates why this happens (it’s all, apparently, in the fibre …

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Baobab 101 – Introducing Africa’s Super Healthy Superfruit

From one of Africa’s most instantly recognisable trees comes one of its most extraordinary fruits. Welcome to the magnificent Baobab fruit (Adansonia digitata). In this episode, Gus (the African Plant Hunter) takes time out from his booth at a busy organic food trade show in Nuremberg, Germany, to explain just why the Baobab is called …

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Devil’s Claw – Africa’s Herbal Remedy for Arthritis and Inflammation

Despite the ominous name, there’s nothing devilish about this plant, Harpagophytum procumbens. In fact its magical healing properties have been known by the San and other ethnic groups in the Kalahari for millennia. In this episode, Gus (the African Plant Hunter) ventures into the wilds of the Kalahari desert in north-eastern Namibia to go and …

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Buchu – Quintessential Fragrance of the Cape Floral Kingdom

When early Dutch settlers first came to the Cape in South Africa, they were struck by the pervasive and intoxicating smell of the Buchu bush. They didn’t know they had reached one of the most biodiverse regions in the world, but they quickly learned of the rich history of traditional use for many of the …

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The Bizarre African Cabbage Tree That “Cures” Amputation!

“If it looks like a deformed limb, it can be used to cure a deformed limb”. So says the Doctrine of Signatures, first elaborated by the ancient Greek physician Dioscorides. Sure enough, throughout Africa, the bizarre-looking Octopus Cabbage Tree, Cussonia arborea, has been used to treat leprosy, physical deformities and even, allegedly, amputation. In this …

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The Health-Giving Terpenes and Cannabinoids in Lemonbush Tea

Cannabis may be the rock star of the medicinal plant world, but it’s certainly not the only plant to contain healing terpenes and cannabinoids. The Lemonbush, Lippia javanica, a common shrub in East and Southern Africa, has several terpenes and cannabinoids of medicinal benefit. Also known as Fever tea (or Zumbani, in the local Shona …

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The Healing Lemonbush Tea of Africa

Lippia javanica, the Lemonbush (also called the Fever tea bush), is one of Africa’s best-known medicinal plants. Consumed as a healing tea, an inhalation or as topical treatment on the skin, this plant has a wide range of traditional medicinal applications, and shares many compounds in common with the cannabis plant. In this episode, Gus …

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The Use of Resurrection (Myrothamnus flabellifolia) Extract in Skincare

The Use of Resurrection (Myrothamnus flabellifolia) Extract in Skincare

Following on from his last episode on the remarkable compounds in the Resurrection bush, Myrothamnus flabellifolia, Gus goes into detail in this episode on the positive effects of each one in terms of healing and restoring skin. With trehalose to protect the membranes of skin cells from the environmental drivers of aging, and arbutin to …

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