Nature Heals


“Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books”. John Lubbock


Nature Heals

nature

                             Image courtesy : rawforbeauty.com

Nature is a natural healer. Nature is nonjudgmental. It does not care if you are rich or poor, young or old. If you follow natural laws, you will be imbued with life. Nature suggest to eat natural, live natural and wear natural. If we try to ignore these natural laws, we are heading towards problems.

If we try to eat unhealthy fast food and expect to stay healthy, we can not.

Fast food might taste good to many, but guess what, that taste is for few seconds until that food is rolling onto your tongue. Once that food reaches inside your belly, it has no taste. Then the real magic starts. That food when broken into parts, can either help us or harm us. Most of the fast food harms, in many ways. Natural food cures. Everyone know that. But still we eat bad food.

Similar is with synthetic fiber versus natural fiber clothes. Synthetic fibers origin is in lab. Natural fiber is given to us by nature. They do not harm. If you want to stay healthy then look at nature. Eat and wear what nature suggests. Nature will keep us safe. Organic will keep us healthy.

Synthetic fiber came to play because they are cheaper and faster to produce, than natural fiber. Unlike natural fibers harvested by farmers, commonly used synthetic fibers are mass produced from petrochemicals to uniform strengths, lengths and colors, easily customized to specific applications. Synthetic fiber started displacing natural fiber and crowded natural fiber out of market place. That is one the reasons why United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization declared 2009 to be the International Year of Natural Fibers.

Let’s discuss natural fiber today. Natural fibers are greatly elongated substances produced by plants and animals that can be spun into filaments, thread or rope. Woven, knitted, matted or bonded, they form fabrics that are essential to society.

Below are listed 15 of world’s major plant and animal fibers. They range from cotton, which dominates world fiber production, to other, specialty fibers such as cashmere which, though produced in far smaller quantities, have particular properties that place them in the luxury textiles market.

Plant fibers: include seed hairs, such as cotton; stem fibers such as flax and hemp. Leaf fibers such as sisal and husk fibers such as coconut.

Animal fibers: include wool, hair and secretions, such as silk.

Plant fibers:

Abaca- Once a favored source of rope, abaca shows promise as an energy-saving replacement for glass fibers in automobiles

Coir: A coarse, short fiber extracted from the outer shell of coconuts, coir is found in ropes, mattresses, brushes, geotextiles and automobile seats.

Cotton: Pure cellulose, cotton is the world’s most widely used natural fiber and still the undisputed “king” of the global textiles industry.

Flax: -One of nature’s strongest vegetable fibers, flax was also one of the first to be harvested, spun and woven into textiles.

Hemp -Recent advances in the “cottonization” of hemp fiber could open the door to the high quality clothing market.

Jute -The strong threads made from jute fibers are used worldwide in sackcloth – and help sustain the livelihoods of millions of small farmers.

Ramie – Ramie fiber is white, with a silky luster, and is one of the strongest natural fibers, similar to flax in absorbency and density.

Sisal -Too coarse for clothing, sisal is replacing glass fibers in composite materials used to make cars and furniture

Animal Fibers:

Alpaca wool -Alpaca is used to make high-end luxury fabrics, with world production estimated at around 5000 tons a year.

Angora wool -The silky white wool of the Angora rabbit is very fine and soft, and used in high quality knitwear.

Camel hair -The best fiber is found on the Bactrian camels of Mongolia and Inner Mongolia, and baby camel hair is the finest and softest.

Cashmere -Cashmere is exceptionally soft to the touch owing to the structure of its fibers and has great insulation properties without being bulky.

Mohair -White, very fine and silky, mohair is noted for its softness, brightness and receptiveness to rich dyes.

Silk -Developed in ancient China, where its use was reserved for royalty, silk remains the “queen of fabrics”.

Wool – Limited supply and exceptional characteristics have made wool the world’s premier textile fiber

Above list considers most of the commonly used natural fibers. Sometimes industry adds various finishes on clothes made from natural fibers, by quoting them with chemicals. My recommendation is to avoid those clothes. Toxic chemicals are involved in the finishes that make wrinkle resistant or fire retardant clothes. Read my article on how to read a label.

These fibers are given to us by nature to wear. Wear them. They might cost more than synthetic. Buy less, buy natural. Fast fashion tempts us to buy more. Fast fashion attracts. But fast fashion brings lot of synthetics with it. Be care full and aware.

If an organic apple a day keeps the doctor away, then an organic cotton t-shirt a day keeps the dermatologist away. Both are natural.

“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs but not every man’s greed” – Mahatma Gandhi

Nature protects our wellbeing.

Being in nature, or even viewing nature scenery, reduces anger, fear, and stress and increases pleasant feelings. Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, it contributes to your physical wellbeing, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones. It may even reduce mortality, according to scientists such as public health researchers Stamatakis and Mitchell.

Research done in hospitals, offices, and schools has found that even a simple plant in a room can have a significant impact on stress and anxiety.

Nature helps us cope with pain. Because we are genetically programmed to find trees, plants, water, and other nature elements engrossing, we are absorbed by nature scenes and distracted from our pain and discomfort.

Eat natural, wear natural and be natural.

References:

  • http://www.naturalfibres2009.org/en/fibres/
  • http://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/enhance-your-wellbeing/environment/nature-and-us/how-does-nature-impact-our-wellbeing
  • Image courtesy; http://www.violette.ca/nature-heals-the-weary-soul-cartoon/ 

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