Thermogenic phenomenon – 9 Herbs to Aid in Weight Loss

What does thermogenic mean and how can it help me to lose weight?  Thermogenesis is a term used to describe the body’s natural process for burning calories. Scientists studying thermogenesis are focusing on understanding and improving the thermogenic phenomenon, which may aid in weight loss.

Livestrong explains it better:  Thermogenesis is a metabolic process during which your body burns calories to produce heat. Several factors induce thermogenesis in your body including exercise, diet and environmental temperature.Thermogenesis can promote weight loss because it increases your body’s calorie burn.

In this article, we will find out just what herbs will produce thermogenesis in the body, creating the thermogenic phenomenon.

I felt it important to list therapeutic actions, drug interactions (if any), and other important uses for these potent, valuable herbs.

9 Herbs to Aid in Weight Loss – Thermogenically


Botanical name:  Elettaria cardamomum

Therapeutic actions:  Aromatic; Stimulant; Carminative; Stomachic; Diuretic, Thermogenic.

Nutrients:  Calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, niacin, folate, vitamins B1, B2, B6  and C.

Description: It has been used to check nausea and vomiting and to help in combating digestive ailments. It has also been used to freshen breath and support smooth digestion.

Internal uses: Respiratory complaints, inflammation of mouth and pharynx.  Liver and Gallbladder complaints, loss of appetite and tendency to infection.

Suggestions:  Try a chai tea with this and nutmeg, clove, ginger and cinnamon.

Suggested Dosage: Tincture 1– 2 gm or 1.5 gm daily.


Botanical name:  Zingiber officinale

Therapeutic actions:  Anti-bacterial; Anodyne; Anti-convulsant; Aphrodisiac; Analgesic; Anti-ulcer; Anti-tumor; Anti-fungal; Antispasmodic; Anti-allergenic; Carminative; Diffusive stimulant; Diaphoretic; Gastric antisecretory; Pungent; Rubefacient; Sternutatory; Sialagogue, Thermogenic.

Nutrients:  Amino acids, calcium, essential fatty acids, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins A, B1, b2, B3, B6 and C.

Drug interactions:  Interacts with Heparin, Warfarin. Check with physician if on Ticlopidine. Supports interaction if on chemotherapy drugs, general anesthetics and nitrous oxide.

Description:  Ginger is warming and stimulating. It has helped to promote gastric secretions, thus aiding with food absorption.  It also suppresses appetite and controls sugar.

Internal uses:  It has been used for indigestion, flatulence, nausea (including travel and morning sickness) and colic. Stimulating to the circulation and will help to warm cold hands and feet. It has a beneficial effect on the lungs, helping to dispel mucus and phlegm. Taken hot, it promotes sweating and is helpful for colds and flu. Chewing the root will stimulate the saliva and benefit the sore throat.

Suggested dosage:  500 mg—1000 mg daily.


Botanical name:  Camellia sinensis

Therapeutic actions:  Astringent; Antioxidant; Anti-bacterial; Anti-tumor; Cardiotonic; Expectorant; Diuretic; Stimulant, Thermogenic.

Nutrients:  Amino acids, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5 and C.

Drug interactions:  Interacts with Acetaminophen, Codeine, Altropine, Cardec, Codeine, Ephedrine and Pseudoephredrine, Lomotil/Lonox, Theophylline/Aminophylline, Warfarin.

Description:  In Chinese herbalism, it is one of the 50 fundamental herbs. Two of the many health benefits to drinking tea are to protect the heart from certain diseases and protect the teeth from decay.

Internal uses:  It has been used internally in the treatment of diarrhea, dysentery, hepatitis and gastro-enteritis. Also good for atherosclerosis, cervical dysplasia, cancer preventative, cholesterol, flu, leukoplakia, weight loss, Crohn’s disease, triglycerides and hives.

Suggested dosage:  As a tea 3—10 cups per day.

Caution:  Excessive use can lead to dizziness, constipation, indigestion, palpitations and insomnia.



Botanical name:  Capsicum minimum

Therapeutic actions:  Anesthetic; Anti-hemorrhoidal; Anti-bacterial; Alterative; Astringent; Antispasmodic; Anti-rheumatic; Antiseptic; Carminative; Diaphoretic; Digestive; Emetic; Irritant; Pungent; Rubefacient; Sialagogue; Stimulant; Stomachic; Sudorific; Thermogenic, Tonic.

Nutrients:  Amino acids, calcium, essential fatty acids, folate, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, C, E and G.

Drug interactions:  Supports interaction with aspirin.

Description:  It is considered by many to be the strongest stimulant known.

Internal uses:  Use as a relaxant to the stomach and colon and as a healer for ulcers. It has been able to stimulate the stomach and is not irritating when small doses are used. Cayenne stimulates the blood and the heart, increasing and strengthening the pulse. It does well in dilating blood vessels and thus relieving chronic congestion of people addicted to drink. It has been used as a tonic and is said to be unequalled in warding off disease because of the high vitamin C content.  It has been used with ginger to clean out the bronchial tubes and sinus cavities, as a gargle for sore throats, as an emergency treatment for shock, for hemorrhage and bleeding wounds – use internally and externally. Also good for headaches (cluster and migraine). It fights obesity by lowering calorie intake.  It also increases thermogenesis in the body by 5% and increases fat burning by 16%.

Suggested dosage:  833 mg daily. Tincture 0.3—1 ml 3 times daily.

Caution:  Should not be used in large doses because it can irritate the gastro-intestinal tract.


Botanical name:  Piper nigrum

Therapeutic actions:  Anthelmintic; Anti-pyretic; Anti-periodic; Carminative; Expectorant; Tonic, Diaphoretic; Aromatic pungent; Febrifuge; Stimulant. Externally, it is a Resolvent; Rubefacient; Stimulant.

Nutrients:  Manganese, magnesium, iron and vitamin K.

Description:  Pepper has long been recognized as an ingredient for stimulating the appetite as well as an aid in the relief of nausea.

Internal uses It ccontains Piperine which blocks formation of fat cells.  When combined with cayenne it was found to burn as many calories as a 20 minute walk. It also increases the bioavailability of most other foods. It has been known to help in cases of asthma, boils, colic, cough, diarrhea, fever, gas, gastric ailments, hemorrhoids, indigestion, chronic rheumatism,  sinus congestion, skin diseases, sore throat and worms.


Botanical name:  Cuminum cyminum

Therapeutic actions:  Anti-bacterial; Antispasmodic; Aphrodisiac; Astringent Carminative; Galactogogue; Poultice; Stimulant; Stomachic, Thermogenic.

Nutrients:  Iron, manganese.

Description:  It is one of the best spices to prevent and relieve flatulence.

Internal uses:  An aromatic, astringent herb that benefits the digestive system and acts as a stimulant to the sexual organs. It has been used in the treatment of minor digestive complaints, chest conditions and coughs. One teaspoon will burn up to 3x more body fat.

Suggested Dosage: 300– 600 mg daily


Botanical name:  Curcuma longa

Therapeutic actions:  Anti-bacterial; Antioxidant;  Anti-coagulant; Antibiotic; Anti-fungal; Anti-inflammatory; Anti-viral; Antioxidant.

Nutrients:  Calcium, iron, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3 and C.

Description:  It is considered a cleansing herb for the whole body. It stimulates bile flow, reduces blood clotting and protects the liver.

Internal uses: It reduces the formation of fat tissue by suppressing blood vessels needed to form it.  It also helps with treatment and prevention of obesity-related chronic diseases. In a 2009 study from Tuft’s University found the mice fed curcumin lost more fat than those on the same diet with no curcumin. It has been used as a digestive aid, fevers, infections, dysentery, intestinal parasites, arthritis, jaundice, and liver problems. It fights free radicals, inhibits platelet aggregation, aids circulation, lowers cholesterol levels and improves blood vessel health.  It has also been used to fight cancerous tumors, crohns disease, HIV, low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, atherosclerosis and bursitis.

Suggested Dosage: 250-500 mg 3 times daily.  Tincture– .5—1.5 ml 3 times daily.

Caution:  May cause stomach upset. Do not use in large quantities. Consult doctor if you have gallstones before taking Turmeric.


Botanical name:  Allium sativum

Therapeutic actions:  Alterative; Anti-bacterial; Antibiotic; Anti-catarrhal; Anti-fungal; Anti-pyretic; Anthelmintic; Anti-asthmatic; Anti-cholesterolemic; Antiseptic; Antispasmodic; Anti-cancer; Cholagogue; Carminative; Diaphoretic; Diuretic; Depurant; Digestant; Emmenagogue; Expectorant; Febrifuge; Fungicide; Hypertensive; Hypotensive; Immuno-stimulant; Nervine; Parasiticide; Prophylactic; Rubefacient; Stimulant; Stomachic; Thermogenic, Tonic; Vasodilator; Vulnerary.

Nutrients:  Calcium, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3 and C.

Drug interactions:  Interacts with Chlorzoxazone, Ticlopidine, Warfarin. Supports those taking Dipyridamole.

Description:  Garlic is one of the most valuable foods. It is good for the heart, liver, gallbladder, stomach, spleen and lungs. One of the best natural antibiotics, it detoxifies (chronic lead poisoning), builds the blood and is an overall great healer.

Internal Uses: It helps the body burn fat. Its expectorant action makes it useful for chronic bronchitis, sickle cell anemia, chronic stomach problems and stomach catarrh. It has been useful with all intestinal infections, such as parasites, dysentery, cholera, typhoid and parathyroid fever. It has helped to lower the blood pressure, counteract arteriosclerosis, and benefits the circulation of blood. Can use with honey for coughs, colds and asthma. Other uses: acne, arthritis, cancer immunity, Candida albicans, colitis, contagious diseases, digestive disorders, ear infections, fever, flu, fungus problems, gas, pinworms, prostate gland problems, staph and strep. Also good for artherosclerosis, colon cancer, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and triglycerides, Candida and parasites.

Suggested dosage:  1—2 cloves daily. 600—900 mg daily. Extract 2.4—7.2 grams daily.


Botanical name: Sinapis alba

Therapeutic actions:  Anti-bacterial; Anti-fungal; Appetizer; Carminative; Cathartic; Diaphoretic; Digestive; Diuretic; Emetic; Expectorant; Rubefacient; Stimulant; Vesicant.

Description:  It has been used in the treatment of coughs with profuse phlegm, tuberculosis, and pleurisy.

Internal usesHas been shown to increase metabolic rate by 25%, burning calories more efficiently.  This means that with a little under 1/2 teaspoon of seeds you could burn an extra 45 calories an hour. The seeds act as a mild laxative and as a blood purifier. In large doses, they are a powerful emetic.


So, there you have it.  Nine herbs to thermogenically aid in weight loss.  Personally, I never knew Mustard seed could burn 45 calories per hour!  That is awesome!  Taking just a few of these will be not only beneficial to weight loss, but for so many other ailments.

Let me know what are your favorite herbs and if you know of other herbs that have the thermogenic phenomenon in the comments below.  If you have any questions, please let me know that too!

Good Health to You







Herbs to Aid in Weight Loss

Women over 50 have a particularly hard time maintaining weight for several reasons. Metabolism has slowed way down, Thyroid function has decreased in functionality and we are not as active as we were when we were younger. Other reasons could include illness, injury and heredity.

Experts agree that eating less and moving more are key to losing weight. It is also important to have a healthy colon and drink plenty of water. If you are healthy and are urinating 8-10 times a day, then you are drinking enough water.

This is part 1 in a series of articles that will feature herbs to aid in weight loss.

Diuretic Herbs – the natural way to relieve water weight

If you happen to feel bloated or retain water, you may be producing too much insulin. This make it impossible to burn fat. Using too much salt or eat high-sodium foods my also be a cause in water retention. The goal here is to lower the amount of carbohydrate foods in the body and increase the intake of protein foods and good fats.

A natural way to relieve access water in the body is to drink herbs teas specifically known for their diuretic properties. Some are listed here. It is also an effective way to consume your water intake. If you know of other herbs that are great diuretics, please let me know by commenting down below.

Herb: ALFALFAAlfalfa

Botanical name: Medicago sativa

Origin: USA

Nutrients: All the known vitamins and minerals with higher amounts of calcium, folate, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B6, B12, C, D, E, K and all the essential amino acids.
Drug interactions: No known drug interactions. Although, it has been considered a light blood thinner.

Description: Alfalfa has been useful to generate energy and endurance. It has also helped to alkalize and detoxify the body.

Herb: CORNSILKCorn Silk

Botanical name: Zea mays

Origin: Bulgaria/Kenya

Nutrients: Calcium, chromium, iron, magnesium, manganese, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, vitamins A, B1, B3, C and K.
Drug Interactions: No known drug interactions.

Description: It contains the cell-proliferant and wound-healing substance allantoin, which speeds the healing process. It also acts on the bladder, kidney and small intestine.


Herb: DANDELION ROOTTaraxacum officinale

Botanical name: Taraxacum officinale

Origin: Hungary/China

Nutrients: Calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3 and C .
Drug interactions: Interacts with Ciproflacin, Loop diuretics, Spirronolactone, Thiazide diuretics, Trimterene.

Description: Dandelion has been used in the treatment of gall bladder and urinary disorders. It is a valuable blood purifier.

CAUTION: Do not use if have gallstones or obstruction of bile ducts.

Herb: GRAVEL ROOTGravel root

Botanical name: Eupatorium purpureum

Origin: USA


Description: Its main use is to treat urinary infections and stones/gravel.
Caution: Do not use if pregnant or while nursing. Has just recently been put on the FDA’ s list of herbs that should not be taken internally.


Botanical name: Hydrangea arborescens

Origin: USA

Nutrients: Calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc.
Description: Main use is for dissolving stones and gravel from the urinary tract.

Caution: Excessive doses can cause dizziness and bronchial congestion.


Botanical name: Hyssopus officinalis

Origin: Argentina/Bulgaria

Nutrients: Choline.
Drug interactions: No know drug interactions.

Description: Hyssop was so highly esteemed in the past that it was considered to be a virtual cure-all.

Caution: Should not be used by pregnant women. Not recommended for those with seizures.

Herb: JUNIPER BERRIESJuniper Berries

Botanical name: Juniperus communis

Origin: Albania/Croatia

Nutrients: Calcium, chromium, iron, magnesium, manganese, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, zinc vitamins A, B1, B2, B3 and C.
Drug interactions: Interacts with loop and Thiazide diuretics, Spironolactone, Triamterene.

Description: Juniper is high in natural insulin. It has the ability to restore the pancreas when no permanent damage has been done. A potent diuretic.

Caution: Do not use when pregnant or have kidney disease. Do not use for more than six weeks at a time.

Herb: OAT STRAWOat straw

Botanical name: Avena sativa

Origin: USA

Nutrients: Calcium, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and E.
Drug Interactions: No known drug interactions.

Description: Mainly used as a nerve tonic, for insomnia, depression and for treating high Triglycerides.


Herb: PARSLEY HERBparsley rootParsley herb

Botanical name: Petroselinum sativum

Origin: USA/Egypt

Nutrients: Calcium, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2,B3, B5, C and E.
Description: It has been useful for chronic liver and gallbladder diseases. The roots act most readily on the kidneys in comparison to other parts of the plant. It is considered a strong diuretic.

Herb: THYME LEAFthyme

Botanical name: Thymus vulgaris

Origin: Morocco/Spain

Nutrients: Amino Acids, calcium, essential fatty acids, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B3 and C.
Drug Interactions: No know Drug Interactions.

Description: Thyme is a common household spice that has many medicinal values including supporting a diminished appetite.

Caution: Excessive use can lead to poisoning symptoms and overstimulation of the thyroid gland.

Herb: UVA URSI LEAFuva ursi

Botanical name: Arctostaphylos uva ursi

Origin: Spain/Albania

Nutrients: Calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3 and C.
Drug Interactions: Interacts with Acetaminophen with Codeine, Atropine, Cardec DM, Codeine, Ephedrine and Pseudo ephedrine, Lomotil/Lonex, Loop Diuretics, Spironolactone, Theophylline/Aminophylline, Thiazide diuretics and Triamterene.

Description: Uva Ursi has a specific affinity for the genito-urinary organs, especially for gravel or ulcerations of the kidney and bladder.

Caution: Uva Ursi is very high in tannins. Do not use if pregnant. Not for use longer than 2-3 weeks as it will cause cramping, nausea and vomiting.


Botanical name: Achillea millefolium

Origin: Poland/Croatia/Hungary

Nutrients: Choline, inositol, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, silicon, selenium, zinc, vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, C, E, F (fatty acids), K and P (bioflavonoids).
Drug Interactions: No known Drug Interactions.

Description: Yarrow is well-known for its use as a remedy for cold/flu/fever. It helps with circulation and is beneficial to all parts of the body.

Caution: It is not appropriate for long term use. Do not use if pregnant.

Many natural remedies to aid in Weight Loss

There are many other herbs that are helpful in weight loss.  If you know of any more that are specific diuretics aiding weight loss, let me know in the comments.





Are Smoothies good for you? -Healthy Smoothie Recipes

There is a lot of hype about smoothies. I have been drinking smoothies for many years  In this blog, I am going to discuss reasons why I make smoothies, questions people ask about smoothies, different types of smoothies and my favorite healthy smoothie recipes.

I have used smoothies for weight loss by drinking them for 30 days.  I lost 12 lbs by doing this.  I had more energy and stamina as well.   It has been a big part of me being able to stay healthy over 50.  My hair, skin and colon are healthy as well.


Creating easy healthy smoothie recipes is a great way to make positive life changes.

Why Smoothies Are Made

There are many reasons why I make smoothies.  Here are just some of them:

  • to lose weight
  • nutrition
  • healthy fast breakfast
  • to gain weight
  • quick pick-me-up during the day
  • to add protein in the diet
  • to add fiber to the diet
  • Mask certain supplements-oils, greens,seeds

Questions People Ask

Are smoothies good for breakfast?  Yes, most of the time they are.  As long as added sugar and preservatives are kept out.  If using a protein powder, then read the label.  Most of them contain preservatives.

  1. Are smoothies good for you?  Yes, the are many benefits to smoothies.  Read above.
  2. Do smoothies take away fiber? Usually no, the whole fruit or vegetable contains natural fiber.
  3. What vegetables or greens are good for smoothies?
    1. Arugula
    2. Cooards
    3. Cabbage
    4. Bok Choy
    5. Beet greens
    6. Spinach
    7. Super green powder (all sorts of brands.  I make my own that I have used for over 25 years)I use herbs like Chlorella, Spirulina, Barley Grass, Wheat Grass, Dulse, Kelp and Alfalfa.
  4. How do you make a good smoothie.  Really it all comes down to taste and why you are making the smoothie. Healthy smoothie recipe for weight loss?  Or an easy healthy smoothie recipe.
  5. What ingredients go into smoothies.
    1. Liquid-
      1. milk: Whole milk, Almond, Hemp, Coconut, Rice
      2. juice-orange
      3. ice
    2. Fruit-bananas, berries, raisins, dates, mango, pineapple (use your imagination)Ingredients for Healthy Smoothie
    3. Seeds (optional)  chia, sesame are a couple of good ones
    4. Vegetable greens like the ones listed above.
    5. Protein powder (optional)

Crystal’s Favorite Smoothies

Hawaiian Delight

Make 2 servings (or a little more :))

1 banana

slice of pineapple

1/2 papaya

1 mango (peeled and cut up)

10-15 almonds

3-4 dates (I like medjool dates, just take the seed out)

Almond milk or coconut milk 8-12 ounces (or to desired consistency)

Another favorite

1 banana

1 orange (just outside peeled with potato peeler)

4-6 frozen strawberries

Almond milk 4-6 oz

4 oz orange juice

3-4 dates


Basic Green Smoothie

One large handful of living fresh raw green, either as single veggie or various mixed veggies (ex:baby spinach, kale, beet greens, broccoli, asparagus spears, cilantro, celery, etc.)

1 peeled orange

1 peeled banana

1 unpeeled but cored apple

1/2 zucchini or cucumber

2 large apples with peel

1-2 cups water

You can try adding flax seeds, sunflower seeds or even avocado if you need more energy.


So, there you have it.  The sky is the limit and taste when it comes to smoothies.  A healthy smoothie recipe is not hard to create especially when fresh produce is in season.

As an Iridologist, I was able to take pictures of my irises and compare them before and after the 30 days.  It was amazing how much clearer the sclera (the whites of the eyes) were after the 30 day Liquid Diet.

sclera right medial quadrant
Sclera right medial quadrant

Sclera right eye








Do you have an easy healthy smoothie recipe?  If you have questions or comments, let me know!  I would love to answers any questions you may have.

Good Health to You






Feeling Healthy over 50 – Keys to Success

Why do you want to feel healthy while getting older? For me, it is because there are many things I have on my “to do” list. I don’t want to be in pain or sick knowing that i have a house to take care of, grandchildren to play with, a husband to build relationships with and a ministry to expand.

How to feel healthy

There are several ways I can feel healthy. I will just touch on them in this blog. In subsequent writings, I will expound on each area to give you more detailed suggestions on what you can do to feel healthy over 50. There is so much information out there, that one can get very overwhelmed. I will write what has worked for me as well as what has worked for other people.

How have I stayed Healthy over 50

I am almost 56 at the writing of this article. I have 8 children, 13 grandchildren. Up to 52 I was a competitive runner. I knew at some point that my running days would end, because I had a deformed disc in my lower back that the doctors said would give me problems by the time I was in my 30’s. Up until a few years ago, I used running to keep my back in check. A couple times a year, it would spasm on me and I would run to work it out. I am not able to do that anymore, but there are other things that I can still do.

The important thing that I do now is still move. I get to the gym and when I cannot, I stretch and exercise at home. I will let you know exactly what I do in another blog.

How to feel healthy with dieting

I have a fairly good diet. It is not perfect, but for about 8 years, it was very good. I have several cleanses and rebuilding diets that I use when I need to. Dieting has such a bad connotation that I really don’t like using that word.

What I mean by dieting, is eating foods that will benefit your body, not hurt it. Eating foods close to Mother Earth…fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds. When I do that, I feel the best; more energy, less pain.

Feel healthy with Natural Supplements

Being healthy over 50 means not relying on pharmaceuticals. If I have to be on them, I am only on them for as short a time as possible. I do not use any drugs. I have used some Ibuprofen or even Naproxen, but only temporary until I found or changed whatever I needed to get off of them.

I have several natural supplements that I use. A few of them I make myself. Being a Master Herbalist, I have the knowledge of what to use to maintain the health of the body. I will go into detail of each of them as time goes on.

Do not give in to being sick or in pain

Why is feeling healthy over 50 important to you? For me, I do not want to give in to being sick or in pain. There is no reason to be if you learn how to get away from it. Through exercise, diet and natural supplements, we can learn together how we can feel and stay healthy as we get older. I refuse to give into the aches and pains. I have too much to do around my home, with my grandchildren, with my husband and wanting to help others.

Many famous people were very active as they got older.  Jack La Lane was 96 when he passed, exercised right up to his death. On it tells of Charles Eugster, 96 who still runs, rows and wake boards. Look at Christy Brinkley, Elizabeth Hurley, Michelle Pfeiffer and Jane Seymour!  All beautiful women over 50.  So, come, take this journey with me as we discover just how to stay healthy as you get older.

Let me know what you think by leaving me comments below.

Good Health to You


Crystal Maceira