Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Herbal Antibiotics: Natural, Safe, and Effective

Is there such a thing as safe, natural antibiotic? The answer is yes, and they are easy to find and use for most people, as effective as many pharmaceutical antibiotics to treat certain ailments, and have little or no side effects. The most effective are the herbal antibiotics, Echinacea and Goldenseal. There are many other herbs which can act as a natural antibiotic, but these two are a must have for every household, in my opinion.

Echinacea and Goldenseal

The easiest form for most people to take, Echinacea and Goldenseal are tinctures, or alcohol based extracts. There are many great formulas on the market which contain these herbs, and usually others, that are useful to treat everything from the common cold to influenza, as well as bacterial issues like food poisoning.

You can also buy the tinctures in their simple forms and mix them together. In a formula, the proper dosing for most ailments is 3-4 dropperfuls, up to once every 2 hours at the beginning of an infection. The earlier you can start with the herbs, the better. For children 3 and older, start with 1 dropperful every 2 hours, then back off to 3 times a day as symptoms improve.

Natural Antibiotic Tea

If you are more adventurous, or don't like to take alcohol in even small quantities, you can make a tea of Echinacea root by simmering 1oz of the root with 2 cups of water for 30 minutes on low heat. You can then add Goldenseal tincture to the hot tea and let it sit for 5 minutes to evaporate off the alcohol.

It is hard to find goldenseal root in its dried form, and quite costly, but if you do have some you can simply make the decoction from both roots. Take ¼ cup every two hours until symptoms begin to improve, then 2-3 times a day until you feel better. This is a very strong tasting tea which can be moderated by adding a little honey. You can also find these herbs in the standardized extract form in most health food stores, if making tea isn't your forte.

Topical Natural Antibiotics

Goldenseal and Echinacea also work well as topical natural antibiotics for things like animal bites or infected wounds. You can apply the tinctures straight to a wound (painful sting, but very effective), or can make a tea and do a soak or wash of the area 3 times a day until all signs of infection are gone. Goldenseal powder is especially effective as a topical natural antibiotic and can be used to pack wounds until they begin to heal over, preventing or alleviating infection. The powder form is expensive, but only takes a tiny amount to do the job, so buying even an ounce goes a long way.

If you experience any unpleasant side effects from the use of these herbs, please discontinue their use and see your doctor or health care practitioner. Remember to tell your physician about new herbs you may be taking if you are on any prescription medications. Hopefully the addition of natural antibiotics like Goldenseal and Echinacea on your shelf will prevent many trips to the doctor in the future.


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