The Castor Oil Pack

Castor oil is a clear, viscous oil that is cold extracted from the seed of Ricinus communis. This plant, native to India and Africa can now be seen in many Canadian gardens. After the oil is extracted, a second extraction of the pomace yields Ricin, a poison used in cancer research and poison products. Castor oil is first mentioned in the Ebers Papyrus – 1550 BCE and was used by Cleopatra for her eyes and lips. Information available in the modern scientific literature is limited to the purgative properties of internal ingestion of the oil. A dose of 5-15 ml will produce catharsis within two to eight hours. There is a plethora of anecdotal folk and clinical literature on Castor Oil, but this bears no stamp of authority in the academic community. A more enlightened approach regarding the use and efficacy of Castor Oil packs is found in the readings...

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Mustard Plaster

For many people, the fall and winter seasons bring increased incidents of colds and flus that may progress into more serious conditions like pneumonia. Those who suffer with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) such as chronic bronchitis, miner’s lung, emphysema and chronic asthma also tend to have their symptoms worsen at this time of year. When professional medical help has been sought and the diagnosis confirmed, a cooperative plan of action may be outlined with the agreement of the health care providers and the patient. The mustard poultice can be extremely effective when given as an external treatment along with the use of herbs and/or drugs taken internally to treat COPD. This combination of internal and external treatments can considerably shorten the healing time and make the patient more comfortable.

The Mustard Plaster
Supplies:
  • Single bed sheet cut in half lengthwise or pillowcase
  • Small bath blanket or large Turkish...

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Introduction to Poultices & Plasters

We would do well to reinstate the ancient art of poulticing as a valued healing tool in the modern herbal renaissance. As practitioners become more involved in providing therapy as well as dispensing herbal prescriptions, the line between clinical herbal therapist and folk practitioner will blur, with or without the approval of the orthodox health care community. There is no need to wait for “scientific validation” when we have recorded over three thousand years of proven efficacy in traditional healing practices all around the world. In this spirit we will re-introduce three important poultices, their preparation and use for the benefit of practitioners who can then also teach these methods to their patients and families. This re-education process will help place personal responsibility for health back into the hands of the individual and create a more humane relationship between the professional and lay community. Read more about the Read More

Herbal Actions For Topical Treatments On Skin

Antifungal: Angelica archangelica radix, Calendula off., Melaleuca alternifolia, Olea europa folia, Tahebuia impetigosa, Usnea barbata Anti-inflammatory: Calendula officinalis, Hypericum perfolatum, Lavandula officinalis, Matricaria recutita. Plantago species Antimicrobials: Baptisia tinctoria, Berberis species, Echinacea species, Hydrastis canadensis, Lavandula off., Melaleuca alternifolia, Rosmarinus officinalis, Usnea barbata Antipruritic: Avena sativa, Calendula officinalis, Hammamelis virginiana, Hypericum perforatum, Lavandula officinalis, Stellaria media Astringent: Achillea millefolium, Aesculus hippocastanum, Agrimonia eupatorium, Geranium maculatum, Hamemulis virginiana, Potentilla tormentilla, Quercus alba, Rhus aromatica, Rubus species, Thea sinensis Emollient: Althea officinalis, Ascophyllum nodosa, Cetraria islandica, Fucus vesiculosis, Linum usitatissimum, Malva sylvestris, Symphytum off., Ulmas fulva cortex Vulneraries: Calendula off., Commiphora mol-mol, Echinacea spp. radix, Equisetum arvense, Impatiens capensis, Lavandula spp., Matricaria recutita, Populus balsamifera, Prunella vulgaris, Stellaria media
Select the herbs from the appropriate herbal action category as indicated by the patient’s condition. You may choose to brew a pot of tea and apply locally as a fomentation or brew a...

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Introduction to Baths

Herbs have a long and well-documented history of use in folk traditions, on the battlefield, and in the clinic. Emergencies and acute and chronic conditions have been successfully treated with herbal remedies taken internally and acting systemically. When herbal remedies are topically applied they tend to act locally, affecting mainly the tissues with which they come into direct contact, and the adjacent tissues through perfusion of the medical elements if they are in a suitable carrier. What conditions are we likely to see in the home and which external treatment protocols are practical, appropriate and harmonious? Father Sebastian Kneipp developed a wonderful system of Hydrotherapy which included soaking the whole body or body parts in temperature controlled water. Adding herbal extracts of teas, tinctures, essential oils, hydrosols and salts provided an enormous variety of treatments, and is itself a complete subject of study. The following herbs are still used in...

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Ginger Fomentation

Fomentations are a category of treatment in which strips of cloth are soaked in a liquid herbal extract e.g. tea, tincture or succus, and placed over the treatment area on the skin. An occlusive covering such as plastic wrap or waxed paper covers this and is held in place with tape or more bandages for a measured period of time.
There are several ways to apply ginger (Zingiber officinalis) to the body: A ginger bath is made by adding a decoction of the root to the hot bath water and soaking the whole body is one. This is done to open the circulation and release the interior heat at the start of a fever management protocol. Another way is to focus the treatment on a particular set of organs and target the circulation of those tissues. Stagnation in any viscera can be alleviated by a ginger compress or fomentation. There...

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Euphrasia Fomentation

Fomentations are a category of treatment in which strips of cloth are soaked in a liquid herbal extract e.g. tea, tincture or succus, and placed over the treatment area on the skin. An occlusive covering such as plastic wrap or waxed paper covers this and is held in place with tape or more bandages for a measured period of time.
A euphrasia fomentation is indicated where there is eye inflammation and/or infection.
  1. Combine 10g. each of the following dried herb:
  • Eyebright – Euphrasia officinalis
  • Chamomile – Matricaria recutita
  • Golden Seal – Hydrastis Canadensis
  1. Bring 250 ml of pure water to a boil
  2. Infuse herbs until cool, then strain
  3. Soak folded gauze in infusion and place over the patient’s closed eyes
  4. Have patient recline for ½ hour
  5. Repeat ad lib

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Arnica Fomentation

Fomentations are a category of treatment in which strips of cloth are soaked in a liquid herbal extract e.g. tea, tincture or succus, and placed over the treatment area on the skin. An occlusive covering such as plastic wrap or waxed paper covers this and is held in place with tape or more bandages for a measured period of time.
An arnica fomentation is indicated for sprains, haematomas, contusions with swelling, and for the resorption of blood. CAUTION: DO NOT USE ON OPEN WOUNDS. May be painful and toxic if absorbed systemically.
  1. Mix tincture of Arnica Montana with pure water 1:4 (20% solution)
  2. Soak gauze in solution and place several folded layers over effusion
  3. Cover with occlusive dressing & Repeat BID until resolved
 

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Astringent Fomentation

Fomentations are a category of treatment in which strips of cloth are soaked in a liquid herbal extract e.g. tea, tincture or succus, and placed over the treatment area on the skin. An occlusive covering such as plastic wrap or waxed paper covers this and is held in place with tape or more bandages for a measured period of time.
An astringent fomentation is indicated for the treatment of cuts, scrapes, abrasions, wounds with exudates and cracked & sore nipples. As a preventive treatment to prepare the nipples for breastfeeding and help preclude mastitis.
  1. Choose appropriate astringent herb by strength and availability.
  • Oak - Quercus spp
  • Sweet Sumac - Rhus aromatica
  • Comfrey - Symphytum off. fol.
  • Yarrow - Achillea millefolium fol.
  • Coneflower - Echinacea spp. rad.
  • Self Heal - Prunella off.
  • Shepherd’s Purse - Capsella bursa-pastoris
  1. Boil 15 minutes in pure water to make a...

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Possible Treatment of SARS

One Possible Protocol for the Treatment of SARS in Acute phase:

  • Asclepias tuberosa radix (Butterfly weed)
  • Eupatorium perfoliatum radix (Boneset)
  • Echinacea angustifolia radix (Echinacea)
Equal parts Hot tisane or tincture in hot water. Then take a hot bath at bed time to produce a fever and induce sweating to break the fever( 38-40C). Do not stay above 39C for more than a few hours at a stretch and not at all with small children or pregnant women. Mustard plaster 30 - 60 minutes one or two times. (Skip a day if two.)

Second Phase


Inula helenium radix (Elecampane) X3 Ligusticum porteri radix (Osha) X3 Lomatium dissectum radix (Biscuit root) X3 Ganoderma spp fungi (Lingzhi) X2 Glycerrhiza glabra radix (Liquorice) X2 Lobelia inflata herba X1 Capsicum minimum fructus (Cayenne) X 1/10

For food

  1. Broth of gobo (Fresh arctium root) from a Chinese or Korean market.
  2. Add astragalus root,...

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