OAT STRAW





Oat straw & Oats carry the highest levels of magnesium of all the known herbs as well as chromium, sodium, silicon, calcium, iron, niacin, phosphorous, riboflavin & selenium.
Oats & Oat straw are also packed with vitamins K, E, C & A, protein & potassium.
Oat straw is the green oat grass & tops in the "milky" stage before the mature oat grains form a head.

Consistent use of oats & oat straw in the diet reduces cholesterol & improves circulatory function, helps to stabilize blood sugar levels, brings about noticeable improvement in coordination, bone density, balance, memory, sensitivity to pleasant stimuli, clarity of thinking & overall calmness & centeredness.
Oat Straw is useful for thyroid & estrogen deficiency, for MS, osteoporosis, appetite loss, anorexia, urinary concerns, colds & chills & to encourage sweating.
It's secondary uses are boils, weak bones, bursitis, constipation, gallbladder, kidney problems, liver disorders, pancreatic concerns, rheumatism & some skin conditions.
This herb strengthens metabolism & circulation,prevents & relieves spasms, softens & soothes damaged or inflamed surfaces such as the gastric mucous membranes,restores, nourishes & supports the entire body; it exerts a gently strengthening effect on the body.

It can help to combat problems such as obesity, varicose veins, irritations related to the digestive tract & as an herbal treatment for hemorrhoids, however it has been found that it should not be used in dyspepsia when accompanied by acidity of the stomach.
Research now shows that it contains the anti-tumor compound b-sitosterol & there are some suggestions that the chances of cancer in the bowel may be reduced by eating oats regularly, as well as cancers in general. Oat straw can be used to fight osteoporosis, to build bones & for pain relief, calming hyperactive children, soothing elderly people, fighting anxiety & panic attacks, boosting the immune system, lifting depression & countering nervous exhaustion.

It can be used for both physical & nervous fatigue & is helpful for depression, appetite loss, skin & bones.
The herb has been recently proven to aid in cognitive performance in the brain.
Oat straw is a good relaxing nervous system tonic & can be used for insomnia & anxiety when these are due to stress.
Oat straw nourishes strong nerves,maintains restful sleep patterns & reduces the frequency & duration of headaches & useful for menopausal symptoms:particularly insomnia, depression, anxiety, memory loss, restless legs.
For depression it may be used with scullcap & mugwort.

Oat straw can help prevent prostate problems & has been known to improve erectile dysfunction.
Oat straw helps promote the body's ability to secrete more fluids thereby preventing vaginal dryness.
Oat straw may be most widely promoted as a sexual performance enhancer for men when used alone & as a sexual stimulant for women when used in combination with either saw palmetto or stinging nettle.

Oat straw has been shown to help alleviate addictions in cases of drugs, alcohol &/or nicotine abuse.
Some herbalists claim that Oat Straw helps to reduce the symptoms of withdrawal from opium & morphine addiction.

Oat straw tea is recommended to soothe chest complaints, especially when mixed with a little lemon & honey.

A strong brew can be added to the bath to benefit rheumatism, paralysis, liver ailments, gout & kidney problems.
Bladder & bowel conditions, intestinal colic & bed wetting have all been helped by soaking in a bath of Oat Straw.
Oat straw makes a good wash for skin diseases, for flaky skin, itching, frostbite, chilblains, wounds & eye problems.

For external use, a decoction can be added to the bathwater to treat skin sores & eczema & that can reduce itchiness.

The alcohol tincture of Oat straw can be used for nerve complaints & for uterine problems in the standard dose of 1- 2 tsp, taken in water, 3 times a day.

An Oat straw bath also soothes rheumatic & gouty pains.
Oat straw may also be added to the bath to help relieve overall nervous body tensions & combines well with Lemon Balm for this purpose.

Oat straw is not a quick fix herb, it is an herb that can be quite effective if used on a regular basis over time. Every person & every situation is different, but a general guideline could be to drink 2-3 cups of infusion, 3-4 times a week. It is slow to act in the system but has a long lasting effect.

PRECAUTIONS:

Because oat straw contains gluten those suffering from celiac disease should avoid it in any form.  

RECIPES:

Tea:

Add 1-3 tsp of dried herb to 1 cup of boiling water.
Cover the cup & allow it to steep for 15 minutes.
Drink 3 times a day.

Mineral Infusion:

Make an overnight infusion by pouring boiling water over 30 ml of oat straw in a 1 l jar.
Cap & strain in the morning.
Drink some every day.
Some other calcium rich herbs are: nettles, sage, chickweed, red clover.

Decoction:

4 tbs oat straw, oat tops, or a combination of both
1 l water
Bring herbs & water to an almost boil in a covered pot. 

Lower to a simmer for 30 - 45 minutes. 
Turn off heat & let sit until cool enough to drink. 
Strain & sip throughout the day.

Oat straw foot baths are recommended for tired or chronically cold feet.
For a bath boil 1 kg of the straw in 3 l of water for half an hour & add the brew to your tub.

You can also add a strong oat straw infusion to bath water to make a soothing bath to ease nervousness:
Steep 4 tbsp of the dried herb in 4 cups of boiling water & add to your bath.
When oat straw is added to a bath it helps with inflammatory skin conditions, as well as seborrhoeic skin disorders. 



BEAUTY:

Externally, oats are used as an emollient & an excellent skin cleanser with a balanced pH for sensitive skin or where conditions make it impossible to use commercial creams & soaps.
Oat Straw gives the hair more body & makes it look more full.
Oat Straw is said to promote healthy skin.

MAGIC:

Carry a sprig of oat to improve a financial situation.
By placing an oat sprig in the house, the occupants would never grow hungry.

Oat straw is used for making corn dollies that feature in harvest rituals.
Some European legends tell of a field spirit called the Oats Goat. The spirit of this creature is embodied into a doll made from the last sheaf collected from the field. This doll is a symbol of fertility for both the farmer & family.
The story in Germany is similar but has a stallion instead of a goat.
The Corn Spirit was supposed to live or be reborn in the plaited straw ornament or corn doll & was kept until the following spring to ensure a good harvest.
The corn dolly often had a place of honour at the harvest banquet table.

It is now a decorative art form which reflect superstitious beliefs. They are used to thank Mother Earth for the Harvest & also as a symbol of good luck & fertility.

To discover the total number of children you will have in your lifetime, perform this old Scottish method of divination:
Go alone into a field of oats at the witching hour on Halloween.
With your eyes tightly closed or your vision obscured by a blindfold, spin yourself three times around in a clockwise fashion & then reach out & randomly pull 3 stalks of oats.
After doing this, open your eyes & count the number of grains there are upon the third stalk.
This will tell you the number of children that you will father or give birth to.
According to W. Grant Stewart’s 19th-century book, Highlanders of Scotland, “It may be observed, that it is essential to a female’s good name that her stalk should have the top-grain attached to it.” Should the top of the stalk be missing, this is taken as a sign that the woman will lose her virginity prior to her wedding day.





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