The nervous system is an important part of the body. Without it one part of the body couldn’t communicate correctly with another. The body is home to 3 different nervous systems.
- Central Nervous System (CNS) – the brain and spinal cord
- Peripheral Nervous System (PNS) – nerve cells that connect the CNS with the rest of the body (organs, muscles, and glands)
- Enteric Nervous System (ENS) – nerve cells in the gastrointestinal tract
When problems within the nervous system arise, ailments like anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, headaches, and digestive issues can occur. Today, I want to talk to you more about what you’ll learn in the fifth unit of The Online Intermediate Herbal Course from The Herbal Academy… it’s all about the nervous system. I’ll be sharing 3 key take-aways from this unit as well as an anti-stress tea recipe that you can use if your nerves are on end at any point during the day.
The Nervous System
What I Studied
The fifth unit in The Online Intermediate Herbal Course is all about the body’s nervous system and it covers some of the following topics.
- overview of each of the 3 nervous systems in the body
- blood brain barrier
- daily rhythms (circadian rhythm)
- stress in the body & herbs to help (adaptogens/nervines)
- headaches – causes, prevention, herbs for help
- sleep & sleep disturbances – causes, herbs for help
- gut-brain connection – herbs for help, pre/probiotics
For me, reviewing how the nervous system works really helped me to see how important this system is to having a healthy body. It’s easy to ignore this seemingly silent part of the body until there are disturbances in it, but keeping it healthy and in good working order really goes a long way at keeping the whole body healthy.
Interesting Things I Learned
Below you’ll find 3 things that really stood out to me most about this unit of study in HA’s Intermediate Herbal Course.
- Stress is a good thing. Does that shock you? It did me. I always thought stress as a bad word, but the body is constantly under different types of stress as a part of living in this world. The body is always shifting back and forth, trying to maintain balance between the outside and inside world. The problem of stress comes when it is constant and the body isn’t able to balance itself out like it should. This is when we notice negative effects of stress. Adaptogens and self-care are great helps for the area of stress.
- Herbs are extremely helpful for headaches. I’ve always been one to have headaches, and over time I’ve learned how to deal with them naturally instead of reaching for a pain reliving medicine as soon as I feel one coming on. I’ve used herbs in the past (and other natural methods for headaches before), but I wasn’t using the right kind of herbs in the correct dosages so I’d kind of given up on them really working for my headaches. After going through this unit I now have two different herbal headache remedies to use when I feel headaches coming on. You can learn more about how I deal with headaches right here.
- There’s a lot of truth to “gut feelings”. The ENS is responsible for more than digestion and gut health… it plays a key role in our emotional health! The more I learn about health, the body, and lifestyle, the more I see how all these puzzle pieces fit together, and it amazes me. The nervous system in the GI tract acts like a second brain in that it sends more signals to the brain than the brain does to it, and it sends messages to itself and other organs using neurotransmitters like serotonin in order to help itself function properly. Keeping the digestive and nervous systems healthy is key to keeping the whole body healthy. The awesome thing is that herbs play a big role in maintaining the health of both of these systems.
A Recipe To Share
The following recipe is for a delicious tea that you can drink anytime you’re having a rough day. HA calls it “For A Better Day Tea” and it’s full of nervine herbs for stress… something we all deal with every single day.
For A Better Day Tea
Shared with permission from The Herbal Academy
- Combine all herbs, mix well, label, and store.
- To use, place 1-3 TBSP. of herb mix into 8 oz. of boiled water, steep for 10 minutes, sweeten as desired, and sip slowly.
So there you go! This is what I’ve learned in the fifth unit of The Online Intermediate Herbal Course from the Herbal Academy. Definitely checkout HA’s online herbal programs, introductory, intermediate, and advanced, to see if they are a good fit for you.