Top 15 Natural Antibiotic Herbs

Written by Warren Whitfield. Posted in Acudetox, Health, Herbal Medicine

Herbal antibiotics have long been used by herbal healers to ward off colds and flu, clear infections and speed wound healing.  Now, they may be moving back into the mainstream as an alternative for bacteria that have become resistant to synthetic antibiotics.  This post is based on the book “Herbal Antibiotics” by Stephen Harrod Buhner, and related materials.  We’ll start with some background information and then discuss antibiotic herbs and their use.

Note:  Not all bacteria are harmful – many are essential to our health and well-being.  Always exercise caution with the use of herbal antibiotics, just as you would with pharmaceutical antibiotics.  In food doses, they are generally benign, but in therapeutic doses they can have side effects just like any medication.

What is an antibiotic?

MedicineNet.com defines and antibiotic as:

A drug used to treat infections caused by bacteria and other microorganisms. Originally, an antibiotic was a substance produced by one microorganism that selectively inhibits the growth of another. Synthetic antibiotics, usually chemically related to natural antibiotics, have since been produced that accomplish comparable tasks.

Most of us think of antibiotics as liquid or pills you pick up at the pharmacy, but these compounds were originally developed from naturally occurring sources.  Plants have antibiotic substances serving a beneficial roll around their root systems. Bacteriophages are viruses the infect bacteria.  (Everything has something that wants to eat it.)  Many common foods and herbs (and some not so common ones) act as antibiotics, such as honey, garlic, onions, licorice root, ginger, sage and many others.

How do bacteria become antibiotic resistant?

herbal-antibioticsAntibiotic resistance is a genetic trait, like brown hair or green eyes, but unlike these traits, antibiotic resistance transfers very quickly between one bacteria and another.  Somehow (and as I understand it, scientists are still trying to figure this out) bacteria communicate with each other extremely rapidly, and through this communication they are able to transfer survival traits.

In a study by Dr. Stuart Levy and his colleagues, they found that introducing antibiotics into chicken feed very quickly promoted the spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria in the chickens’ intestinal tracts, as well as the intestinal tracts of the people working with the chickens.  The chickens’ guts changed within a week, the farm workers in 3-6 months.  Further, the bacteria sampled were not only resistant to tetracycline (the antibiotic used), but several other commercial antibiotics – they had learned and adapted.  (Personally, this freaks me out.)

The good news – after they stopped using the antibiotic laced feed for six months, no detectable levels of tectracycline resistant organisms were found in the farm workers. Read more about this study at “The Spread of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria from Chickens to Farmers“.

How are herbal antibiotics different from pharmaceutical antibiotics?

Many pharmaceutical antibiotics are isolated chemical constituents.  They are one compound/one chemical – penicillin is penicillin, tetracycline is tetracycline and so on.  This makes them easier for bacteria to adapt to and counteract.  In contrast, herbs are much more complicated.  Garlic has over 33 sulfur compounds, 17 amino acids and a dozen other compounds.  Yarrow has over 120 identified compounds.  (It makes me look at my herbs with a new appreciation.)  In plants, the whole appears to be more than the sum of its parts.  The different compounds work together, often to produce better than expected results.  (See Chapter 2 of Herbal Antibiotics for a more detailed explanation.)

Top 15 Antibiotic Herbs

Stephen lists the following as his top 15 antibiotic herbs.  I might also add cinnamon (perhaps it’s been added in his second edition, which I haven’t had the pleasure of reading yet).

  • Acacia
  • Aloe
  • Cryptolepsis
  • Echinacea
  • Eucalyptus
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Goldenseal
  • Grapefruit Seed Extract
  • Honey
  • Juniper
  • Licorice
  • Sage
  • Usnea
  • Wormwood

The use of each of these is detailed in the book.  I’ll share a few that I use regularly.

Aloe

Aloe vera is active against Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonos aeruginosa, and herpes simplex virus type 1 and type 2.  Aloe and honey are two of the most effective treatments for burn victims when applied externally to speed wound healing and prevent infection.  Aloe is used simply by slicing open the leaves of the fresh plant to get at the sap and applying the aloe gel to the wound or burn until well covered, repeating as necessary.  (Read more about medicinal use of aloe.)

Garlic

Garlic is active against Tuberculosis, Shigell dysenteriae, Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonos aeruginosa, Candida albicans, Escherichia coli (E.coli), Streptococcus spp., Salmonella spp., Campylobacter spp., Protues merbilis, herpes simplex, influenza B, HIV and many others.

Garlic make be taken fresh (as juice or as cloves), in capsules, as tincture, or in food.  Start with small doses and gradually increase.  Raw garlic may cause stomach upset and even induce vomiting, so be careful.  Small, frequent doses are generally easier to take than large doses (1/4 to  teaspoon juice as needed).  Capsules may be better tolerated and easier to take.  Ample garlic is food is also helpful.  Watch out for garlic and blood thinning medication.

Echinacea (Echinacea augustifolia, E. purpurea)

Echinacea is active against Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus spp., mycobacterium (tuberculosis), abnormal cells (direct application necessary).  Stephen particularly recommends it for abnormal pap smears, strep throat, and very early onset of colds and flus.  For strep throat and heading off colds and flus, he recommends the use of echinacea tincture, 30 drops (full dropper) each hour.  I have also had success fighting off a cold with a steady stream of echinacea tea.

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)

Licorice is active against malaria, tuberculosis, Bacillis subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus sobrinus, S. mutans, Salmonella typhimurium, Escherichia coli, Candida albicans, Vibrio cholera, Trichophyton mentagrophytes, T. rubrum, Toxocara canis.

Licorice is a powerful immune system stimulant and antibiotic, and works well with other herbs.  It does have side effects, especially with overuse.  The author notes, ” I have found in practice that the use of the whole root does in fact produce fewer side effects than the extracts. However, some of the same side effects still occur: higher blood pressure, water retention. These occur with less frequency and generally occur in those of middle age – i.e. those who have gone through menopause. I have used licorice for over 20 years now and find the herb moving more and more into the drug category for me due to its potency. Should be used with caution in those with high blood pressure.”

I’ve used licorice root in tea, and as part of this herbal sore throat syrup.  Stephen  advises a tea using  1/2 to 1 teaspoon powdered licorice in 8 ounces of water, steeped for 15 minutes and drained, up to three times per day.

There is much, much more to learn about herbal antibiotics, but I just wanted to give you a brief overview and let you know that herbs can be effective remedies, sometimes even for infections that don’t respond to “standard” treatments.  Always exercise caution when using herbs as medicine, and be doubly careful if you are on any prescription medication.

source: http://www.commonsensehome.com/herbal-antibiotics/

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Warren Whitfield

Warren Whitfield is the founder and CEO of the Addiction Action Campaign. He is also the author of “Addict Nation – The epidemic of addiction in South Africa today”. He founded NADA S.A. and has his own auriculotherapy practice in Northcliff, Johannesburg. He envisioned the concept of addiction harm reduction in South Africa and birthed the Addiction Harm Reduction Compliancy Initiative. Besides treating people for many ailments, he also created and owns various other businesses which include, AffiliatePro Marketing, INeedRehab.co.za & Acudetox.co.za

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Kelly Clarkson shares new photo of baby Remy and his sister River on Father's Day Kelly Clarkson shared a new photo of baby son Remy on Sunday as she wished husband Brandon Blackstock a happy Father's Day. The sweet snapshot showed Brandon sitting on the sofa with his arms wrapped around their daughter River Rose and their two-month-old son Remington Alexander. 'Happy Father's Day @BBlackstock #PieceByPiece Thnx 4 being such a great dad 2 all 4 of our kiddos! #sexydaddyalert,' Kelly wrote on Twitter.pre bonded hair 'Sexy daddy alert': Kelly Clarkson shared a sweet photo of husband Brandon Blackstock with their two-year-old daughter River (L) and two-month-old son Remy in honour of Father's Day on Sunday The 34-year-old American Idol winner - who has been married to the talent manager since October 2013 - gave birth to Remy on April 12, while River celebrated her second birthday last week. Kelly is also stepmother to Brandon's two children Savannah, 14, and Seth, eight, and recently said that they won't be having any more kids.

'Oh, no, we are done,' she told KIIS FM Australia when asked if she planned to try for more children. 'Oh good Lord, yes, I can't be pregnant again. This will be our number four total, so we're good. 'Honestly, the first one was really rough, and I was like, "Oh, it can't happen again," and no it happened, like, way worse this time.' Happy family: The singer is also stepmother to Brandon's two children Savannah, 14, and Seth, eight. She is seen here with the talent manager in 2013 Kelly added: 'I just get hospitalised, and I have to get fluids. It's just, like, my body was not made to be pregnant.' Meanwhile last month, the singer joked that she 'hates' Chrissy Teigen, after seeing a picture of the model in a crop top and hotpants just three weeks after giving birth. Responding to the photo that John Legend shared on Instagram, Kelly tweeted: 'Okay, what?! She just had a baby! My train of thoughts.... #hateher #justkidding #kindofnotkidding #jealouslikeJonas.' But it was all in good fun as the pop star also invited John and his wife and daughter over for a 'play date' - providing they bring some of Chrissy's delicious cooking. Fighting back: Last year, the Stronger hit-maker responded to fat-shamers who criticised her for not bouncing back into shape right away after giving birth Last year, the Stronger hit-maker responded to fat-shamers who criticised her for not bouncing back into shape right away after giving birth. 'There are just some people who are born skinny and with a great metabolism – that is not me,' Kelly told Redbook magazine.remy hair extensions 'I wish I had a better metabolism. But someone else probably wishes they could walk into a room and make friends with everyone like I can. You always want what someone else has.' The star added: 'I don't obsess about my weight, which is probably one of the reasons why other people have such a problem with it.' Just kidding: Meanwhile Kelly joked last month that she 'hates' Chrissy Teigen for getting back her pre-baby figure so quickly after giving birth

She impressed audiences with her gorgeous legs as she flirted with Leonardo DiCaprio in Wolf of Wall Street. And Margot Robbie’s pins were on display as she strolled around New York City in a short black slip dress paired with a long pink Kimono, on Wednesday. The 26-year-old showed why she is tipped to be the next Bond girl, showing off her slender physique in the eye-catching number from Spell & The Gypsy Collective. Scroll down for video Stepping out: Margot Robbie’s trim pins were on display as she wafted around New York City in a short black slip dress paired with a long pink Kimono on Wednesday The oriental-inspired garment featured broderie anglaise in elaborate flower patterns on the sleeves, shoulders and back, and flowed behind her as she strolled around downtown NYC. Leaving a Tribeca hotel, the Australian actress smiled behind oversized round metallic sunglasses with her blonde locks tied back in a bun.perruques cheveux naturels The Hollywood starlet’s complexion was characteristically flawless all over, but years in the Northern Hemisphere appeared to have erased her Australian tan. All smiles: Leaving a Tribeca hotel, the Australian actress smiled behind oversized round metallic sunglasses with her blonde locks tied back in a bun High fashion: The 26-year-old showed why she is tipped to be the next Bond girl, showing off her slender physique in the eye-catching number from Spell & The Gypsy Collective Good taste: The oriental-inspired garment featured broderie anglaise in elaborate flower patterns on the sleeves, shoulders and back, and flowed behind her as she strolled around downtown NYC She enhanced her look with natural-look makeup and subtle pink lipstick and carried a small black leather handbag to run her errands.

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