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February 2007 Ageless herbal newsletter

Underneath is the main part of the newsletter that was sent out (excluding special offers or promotional items). You can access all previous newsletters and also subscribe to the free newsletter.
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Buchu

Buchu, also known as bookoo, boegoe, bucku and bucco, is classified under the same family as citrus plants, Rutaceae, with its genus and specie being Agathosma crenulata – there are many different varieties of Buchu found in South Africa – its natural habitat, so the classification may vary, but A. crenulata and A. betulina are most commonly used commercially.

buchu

PLEASE NOTE: We do not sell buchu or any Buchu products.

Buchu is a shrub that grows up to 5 feet, with opposite or alternate leaves, which can be up to 1.4 inches long. The leaves have visible oil glands that release a strong aroma, reminiscent of blackcurrant. White flowers with purple anthers appear in spring, usually with 5 petals.

The herb is indigenous to South Africa and was introduced to European colonists of the Cape of Good Hope by the Khoi San (bushmen) people in the early 18th century. The Khoi San believed the herb to be a miracle remedy for almost all ills and to fight aging. The herb was so highly prized by these people that a thimble full of Buchu could be bartered for a whole sheep.

The herb was relatively scarce, but the Khoi San crushed the leaves to make an infusion for a tea, made poultices of the leaves for cuts, scrapes, small wounds, bruises and sprains and also mixed the crushed leaves with fat rendered from lamb’s tails, to rub into their skin to moisturize, protect and beautify the body. The herb was also regarded as a perfume, due to its blackcurrant aroma.

The European colonist introduced Buchu tea to Europe, where it was known as ‘Noble’s tea’, because only the very rich and the nobility could afford to buy it.

In the late 1800’s, the tea was introduced to the medical profession in America, as a panacea for all ills. Buchu has the astounding reputation of being one of the few South African herbs to be listed in eminent modern pharmaceutical reference books in America, Britain and Scotland, particularly with reference to its use as a treatment for infections of the genito-urinary tract.

The specie Crenulata and Betulina have a high oil content and are the main source of commercially harvested Buchu. They grow in the so-called “fynbos” (meaning ‘fine bush’) strip in the Western Cape Mountains and are not known to be able to grow anywhere else in the world - this is most probably due to the winter rainfall and the mild, frost-free winter climate. The summer brings cool misty clouds and an almost Mediterranean climate, which is considered ideal for the propagation and cultivation of this herb.

The farming and cutting of Buchu is very specialized. Experienced cutters, who hand the specialized method of picking down through generations, harvest buchu. Harvesting usually occurs during the months of October through May. Buchu leaves that are harvested have to be processed as soon as possible after picking, to maximize the oil yield. Buchu is exported all around the world, to be used as a natural blackcurrant flavoring or fixative in various commercial products and has been approved for use by the FDA and the European Union for use in foodstuffs. Buchu leaves are also dried and sold for use in various homeopathic remedies.

A common use for Buchu in South Africa is Buchu brandyBoegoe brandewyn” where the leaves are infused in brandy, to be taken – hopefully in small doses – to treat stomach ailments.

Buchu is fast becoming known as a South African “wonder” herb.

Therapeutic uses of buchu buchu boegoe leaves south african herb

Internal

The tea or a tincture is taken for the relief of urinary tract infections, especially in conjunction with prostate problems. It is also used in the symptomatic relief of rheumatism.

Buchu is used to combat bloating while menstruating, to reduce high blood pressure and for congestive heart failure.

Buchu decreases inflammation of the colon, gums and other mucous membranes and is specifically used to treat bladder infections.

  • CAUTION Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use buchu and young children should also not use the herb. When taking Buchu, also remember to increase your consumption of foods rich in potassium (such as bananas, dark green vegetables, whole grains and fish), as the herb can decrease levels of potassium in the body.

External Use buchu boegoe leaves south african herb

The crushed leaves are steeped in vinegar to be used as a remedy for sprains and bruises.

The oil extracted from Buchu should not be used on the skin, because its high pulegone content is considered toxic. Note: the high pulegone content is found in the essential oil and not in the tea, or a poultice or infusion.

Thank you for reading about this very interesting and useful herb, that is of benefit when used to treat urinary tract infections, bladder and kidney problems, prostate problems and as a diuretic.

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Articles of interest

Ageless herbal product range

Our Ageless herbal product range

Skin care

  • Healing cream
    • To assist in wound healing while soothing skin complaints – such as eczema and psoriasis, acne and piles and moisturizing and protecting the skin. This product has shown its effectiveness over a wide range of problems and judging from sales over more than a decade – it is the trusted healing cream to help with all mishaps, allergic reactions, irritated, burning, itchy and uncomfortable skin conditions.
  • Face wash
    • This face wash will properly clean your face and remove all impurities and environmental pollutants, without drying the skin. It contains eight herbal extracts to help promote a clear, vital and healthy complexion and a younger looking skin.
  • Moisturizing day cream
    • This day cream is formulated to help fight the signs of aging on various fronts. It helps to reduce free radical damage which, if left unchecked, leads to premature aging. The herbal extracts help to promote cell rejuvenation and regeneration and provide moisture and hydration to the skin.
  • Nourishing night cream
    • This nourishing night cream penetrates the skin extremely well and does not make the skin feel oily. It contains a host of herbal extracts to help in the fight against premature aging and has added vitamin E as well. Apart from the moisturizing effect and the anti-aging properties it also softens and smoothes the skin.
  • Eye gel
    • An effective refreshing eye gel to help reduce puffiness and dark rings around the eyes, while fighting wrinkles and lines. This is a very clever combination of herbal extracts and the base formula has its roots in a clinically proven formula.
  • Mud face mask
    • With this skin treatment product we combined a special selection of herbs in a base of thermal mud with oligoelements. This recommended weekly treatment will boost circulation to the skin, help to fight wrinkles and lines, improve firmness while at the same time improving suppleness and elasticity of the skin.

 

Hair care

  • Shampoo with rosemary extract + 7 other herbals
    • Our shampoo is in a class of its own – and granted – it is far more expensive than cheap supermarket shampoos, but no other shampoo has the active ingredients we have in our shampoo. The rosemary will boost the health of the hair and scalp, while the other seven herbal extracts will help strengthen the hair and make it shine, increase the volume and make it manageable.
  • Rosemary hair treatment conditioner
    • We have found that this hair conditioner should really be used as a conditioning treatment. This then removes the need to condition the hair every time you wash – and can be used once a month. It is a superb hair tonic and helps in the control of sebum secretion of the scalp. Although not formulated for dandruff – the ingredients will assist with this as well, while supporting the health of the scalp.

 

Specialized herbal gels and lotions

  • Hand and body lotion
    • When formulating this hand and body lotion we created a rich nourishing, protecting and reviving lotion, which will not leave the skin oily or tacky, but will create a well moisturized, hydrated and supple skin. After applying this lotion it will quickly be absorbed by the skin, leaving it silky soft, smooth and well moisturized.
  • Stretch mark gel
    • Although nothing can remove already formed stretch marks (only surgery can do that) – thousands of satisfied clients confirm that this gel improves the appearance of old stretch marks. The gel will help in PREVENTING stretch marks (a 92% success rate) and is used with great success by expectant mothers and body builders who may form marks when bulking-up. The formula of this gel is based on clinical studies done in France, to which we added other herbal extracts.
  • Cellulite gel
    • Fighting cellulite is easy with this herbal cellulite gel. It contains a patented extract of Bayberry (Myriceline) and nine other plant extracts and essential oils. The gel will help to get rid of cellulite (which has been clinically proven) and will also help to prevent cellulite from forming. So now it is easy to get your soft body contours back again.

 

Herbal supplements

  • Apple cider vinegar (liquid) with Centella asiatica
    • The health benefits of apple cider vinegar are combined with the therapeutic properties of Centella asiatica. This old folk remedy is still used with great effect by thousands of people daily.
  • Digest capsules
    • If your digestive system is under-par and you struggle with constipation or you simply need to boost the health of your digestive system then this capsule is for you. Fenugreek is a general digestive tonic and psyllium is a magical bulking agent that will help proper bowel movements, without using a laxative.
  • Detox capsules
    • Our modern day lifestyle exposes us to many unwanted additive and our diet also places stress on the body. To help the body get rid of toxins and waste materials naturally we combined fennel, basil, celery and parsley to help the body remove these toxins. It peps-up your metabolism and helps the bladder, kidneys and liver to do their work more effectively.
  • Urinary and bladder health capsules
    • Using an all natural approach, our capsules will help the discomfort and burning urine sensation of urinary tract infection and help clear up foul smelling urine. We combined cranberry, dandelion, uva ursi and vitamin C in a single capsule to effectively fight bladder infections and to stop the burning sensation when urinating.
  • Tri- Mushroom blend capsules
    • If you need an immune system boost then have a look at our combination of maitake, reishi and shiitake mushrooms. These mushrooms have showed to be a great help in boosting the immune system – and form a good nutritional supplement support for HIV/Aids patients and people receiving chemotherapy. Any person with even a slightly compromised immune system may benefit from this supplement.
  • Olive leaf extract capsules
    • This natural detoxifier helps with a variety of ailments and people with chronic fatigue syndrome, infections, glandular fever (Epstein Barr), and even candida and herpes have found it of value. Olive leaf extract helps to fight bacteria, viruses, retroviruses, and protozoa and yeast strains. Apart from fighting all of these problems it also helps to improve kidney function and fights free radicals.
  • Sexual supplement (previously known as Vuka Nkuzi)
    • Men normally don’t admit when they have a declining libido although it is a most common problem. We combine in this supplement seven different natural ingredients to boost sexual health – without any side effects often experienced with such medication. After more than a decade, and thousands of regular Vuka Nkuzi clients we still offer this well priced supplement to boost the libido.

 

Other products

  • Jojoba oil
    • This liquid golden ester not only moisturizes and penetrates the skin but also helps to fight wrinkles and lines while promoting a clear and unblemished skin. Jojoba does not clog the pores but helps to restore skin elasticity and smoothness. It will leave the skin supple and velvety soft without any oiliness and can be used neat on the skin.
  • Lavender oil
    • This is the most popular essential oil and with good reason. Lavender oil is a superb product to use on burns, insect bites, sunburn, wounds and other skin complaints and irritations. Lavender oil is one of the few essential oils that can be used neat (not diluted) on the skin, and is great to help with regeneration and rejuvenation of skin cells. Emotionally it has a calming and soothing effect and is an exceptionally pleasant smelling oil.
  • Tea tree oil
    • Once used, you will always have a bottle of tea tree essential oil handy. It deals effectively with bacteria, fungi and viruses. Our oil surpasses the “Australian Standard” by having less than 15% 1,8 cineole and more than 30% of Terpinen-4-ol. This powerful essential oil is effective in various ways to fight infections and skin problems.
  • Almond oil
    • This light and deeply moisturizing oil has a softening effect on the skin and can be used on the face and body. Almond oil has excellent emollient properties and helps to balance water and moisture loss in the skin. It can be used neat on the skin and also makes an excellent massage base.

Herbal information

Herbal encyclopedia

Different uses of medicinal herbs

Explanation of the therapeutic properties of herbs

List of ailments and herbs that may be useful


Information on individual herbs

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