Here is a letter that my friend and sister herbalist Dori Midnight recently moved to the Valley from San Francisco wrote to her West Coast friends.
Hi West coast friends,
We are living in some intense times- the earthquake and nuclear failings in Japan is just part of it. This is not my usual full moon letter (it's not the full moon!), but a just little peep about things you can do to help support your body (and spirits) right now. As you've probably heard, there may be some radiation moving across the pacific in the next weeks heading towards the west coast from Japan. To keep going, be alive, and not shut down, we need courage, nourishment, and support- make a pot of soup! (and can I be a grandma for a minute and say if you haven't made an emergency kit, please do?)
I will be posting more recipes and some herbal first aid/community healing basics on my blog this week. If you have friends or family in Japan or Hawaii, you can pass this along to them too.
1. SEAWEED: eat nori, put wakame, kombu, and hijiki in your soups and stews. The iodine in kelp helps draw out the radiation and protect your thyroid from radioactive uptake.
2. MISO: good medicine full of live cultures, amino acids, minerals, and protein. I'd recommend making a big pot this week, having a bowl everyday and feeding it to all your friends- recipe follows.
3. MUSHROOMS: strengthen your immune system with some shitake mushrooms, sauteed or in soups.
4. Eat vegetables, especially DAIKON radishes and BURDOCK root- stick them in your soup too or make a shredded salad (recipe below). Daikon has been used for drawing out radiation, post nuclear fall out- it's cooling and detoxifying.
5. BATHS in epsom salt and baking soda (1 lb of salt, with a bit of baking soda 2x week)
6. DRINK lots of WATER
7. IMMUNE support: do the things you know boost your immune system- sleep well, eat garlic and Vitamin C rich foods, and go easy on the sugar.
8. LOVE: send prayers, love, healing thoughts for those who need it most. Instead of freaking out or shutting down, let your anger, fear, and grief flow- it's what makes us human and feel connected to what's going on in the world right now. Crying is a potent way to detox, friends.
9. HERBS: if you want to get herbal, some great allies are nettle tea, cilantro (eat a lot of it or take a tincture- it helps draw heavy metals out ), and milk thistle (helps your liver process toxins). Also Yarrow Environmental Essence from FES is a beautiful formula to support the body in environmental disasters.
Magical Medicinal Miso Soup
Saute one onion, sliced thin, til translucent. Add water, seaweed of choice (I like Kombu and Wakame), shitake mushrooms (dried or fresh), burdock root, carrots, and any other hearty roots you like. Simmer for 25 minutes.
I like to add shredded or sliced ginger near the end, so it's strong, and some garlic, which I like really strong. You can also add greens, like kale or spinach. Simmer another 5 minutes.
Because you don't want to boil your miso, I usually put a large dollop of miso paste in my bowl and then pour the broth on top to dissolve it.
Drink and offer bowls to all your loved ones and neighbors, kiddos and pets, family and friends.
Get your Daikon
Easy Shredded Salad
Shred carrot and daikon radish (2-3 roots)
Mix with sesame oil and a little umeboshi vinegar (also a great medicine!), sesame seeds, whatever fresh herbs you've got on hand (I love mint or cilantro), and a little tamari. Eat and feel alive and well thanks to the plants, the sun, the water and the farmers.
Take good care, my lovely friends!