Disclaimer: The information provided is not intended for personal (layman-based) diagnosis or treatment of specific illnesses. Please consult a knowledgeable practitioner if you are pregnant, lactating or if you have epilepsy, heart problems, autoimmune conditions, etc. If you plan to use olive or Artemisia leaves but are taking medications for high blood pressure, diabetes, blood thinning or circulation problems, etc. please first discuss your treatment with an experienced practitioner of integrated medicine. Herbs and herbal products may duplicate the effects of certain patent drugs.

The discovery of an ancient medicine: olive leaves

During 1960 researchers got excited about extracts from olive leaves that could lower blood pressure and improve circulation. They also found that the extracts (not the leaf?) could control blood pressure and kill certain viruses and harmful bacteria. Traditionally olive leaf tea was used in Spain to treat high blood pressure. A few centuries ago the Spaniards also knew about using the fresh green juice from olive leaves to ward off colds and flu. There is a traditional aspect to the medicinal use of olive leaves.

wild harvesting olive leaves

Today we hear about antioxidants that come from olive leaf extracts like oleuropein that are more potent than those of the ever popular green tea. Companies that sell olive leaf extracts have ample clinical proof to nail their point. The chemicals oleuropein, oleacein, elenolic acid and epielenolic acid are highly concentrated in olive leaves. But in combination with enzymes and trace minerals that are also present then surely a more potent anti-microbial effect is achievable by leaving the chemicals where they belong in the first place? The obvious clincher - the fact that anybody can pick a few olive leaves, juice them up and get the same if not more of the benefits but does not generate healthy profits to the manufacturers of herbal extracts.

Over 40% of our patent drugs have been inspired by plants but when the complete and original herbs are used very few if any harmful side effects are ever noted. Most herbal remedies can provide even more benefits. It is sad that most people who take patent medications are afraid of taking responsibility and accept the adverse side effects - just like an obedient child.

Make more money – suggest fat burning and anti-cancer effects?

The fat burning factor boosts the commercial aspect of any herb that was formerly regarded as only a humble folk medicine - little leaf dangling from a tree. It seems that only the extracts of the olive leaf are the key to baiting the customers. Here is the latest fashion buzz on oleuropein as opposed to green tea. No whole olive leaves were used to determine the following:

  • Weight loss: Oleuropein increases thermogenin, the body’s fat burning chemical. It is said that oleuropein encourages the burning of sugar as a source of immediate energy as opposed to storing it in the liver or converting it to fatty tissue.
  • Breast cancer? Although a bit vague new medical studies suggest that oleuropein may help to protect against breast cancer and be able to kill existing breast cancer cells.

Anybody who really understands the microbial link to some forms of cancer will know that in such cases one needs to kill the mycotoxins (the toxic residues) from mould, bacteria or fungus that set off a reaction and provoke the cancer in the first place. Breast cancer especially, is often triggered by mycotoxins. Olive leaf – sorry, oleuropin (and the other extracts?) can be administered to kill off the pathogenic microbes. But olive leaves have it all!

Anti-microbial effects of olive leaves without harming gut flora

Research undertaken in 1995 has been well documented in the book: Olive Leaf Extract, by the Medical Journalist Morton Walker. Olive leaf extract was shown to be effective in the treatment of all types of infections including:

  • Epstein-Barr virus, cytomegalo-virus, herpes virus, retroviruses (HIV) and colds and flu
  • Certain bacterial infections: even Staphylococcus Aureus
  • Lethal forms of protozoa and other parasites:  including Malaria, Bilharzia and Cholera
  • Fungal and mould-based complications from Candidiasis
  • Using the whole olive leaves either ground up as a tablet or as a juice can also eliminate larger parasites such as tapeworms.

Olive leaf extracts (leaves?) destroy the outer lining of microbes and this inhibits the growth of certain strains of bacteria, viruses and other pathogens. These olive leaf chemicals do a selective execution - the friendly gut bacteria that control the growth of yeast remain intact. So unlike using normal antibiotics, there is no need to restore the gut flora with probiotics. Some cases of candidiasis respond well to a course of olive leaf products – regardless of how much yoghurt (in vain) has been consumed. Olive leaves are also effective against some of the more persistent viral infections - the ones that need expensive and harmful drugs. Although a touchy subject, olive leaves are known to give retroviruses a powerful smack. They reduce the parasite load and come to the aid of the immune system.

Some doctors take olive leaf products to ward off colds and flu from their patients

Olive leaf products are a boon when colds and flu strike. Many doctors use them for their own protection from the steady stream of patients who cough and sneeze all over them. Some of the patients who have been weaned from high blood pressure medications will agree that skipping a few rounds of colds and flu every year is indeed a beneficial side effect. They also find it more pleasant to no longer have to suffer from harmful side effects of the conventional blood pressure medications. So the old folk remedy of drinking olive leaf tea takes on a new profile.

olive leaf tablets

Oleuropein (olive leaves) and the health of your joints

The anti-oxidant activity found in olive leaf (extracts?) strengthens the immune system and prevents oxidative damage, especially to blood vessels and keeps them waterproof. This prevents proteins and larger particles from leaking into joints or other tissues and setting off inflammation and auto-immune reactions. The antimicrobial effects help to kill organisms that invade joints. Otherwise they continue to expel a toxic and acidic residue there that builds up over many years. Traces of Chlamydia, malaria, salmonella or bilharzia infections for instance, can get trapped in joints. This is often the real cause of inflammation - the heat, pain and swelling we know too well. So when circulation gets a boost from olive leaf the toxic deposits known as mycotoxins can be knocked out and swept away.

The improved circulation, antispasmodic and antioxidant properties of the olive leaves make a good alternative to NSAF drugs that cause long-term damage to the liver and kidneys. Cortisone is a popular choice to control inflammation by depressing the immune system. But it promotes osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, obesity and water retention. (More drugs please.) The long-term use of cortisone makes the surrounding tissues very acidic so a constant supply of calcium is leached from the bones to keep the blood alkaline.

The Mediterranean treatment for gout – olives!

Eating lots of olives is said to prevent an attack of gout according to the Mediterranean belief. The use of Calcium D Pantothenate known as Vitamin B 5 is a very effective natural cortisone booster and helps us to digest protein, carbohydrates and fats more efficiently. It also reduces purine levels from food sources to keep gout and arthritis under control. Olive leaf products help to speed up the anti-inflammatory process. Olive oil contains a small amount of oleuropein providing it is a bitter, tangy extra little virgin!


Use olive oil as well as olive leaves for the old-fashioned liver and gall flush

Do this properly and you will expel a surprising number of bright green gallstones. The process has been used for centuries and is considered to be quite safe. After doing the flush some people had no gallstones and cancelled their surgery. It is best to seek the approval of a practitioner. Do not do the flush if you are pregnant or are trying to conceive.

Taking larger than normal doses of olive leaf products for a few days helps to eliminate larger parasites, even some of the worm and fluke species. It is a good idea to do this prior to having a liver and gallbladder flush. Other herbs like Artemisia, ivy and walnut leaf that eliminate parasites can also be taken in combination with the olive leaves. There are herbal combinations available from most health shops. Some work quicker than others and are usually in tablet or tincture form.

Day 1 and Day 2: Eat food that is predominantly fat-free for two days. This is boring, but it is essential to build up the pressure inside the gallbladder beforehand. Continue taking your anti-parasite treatment as well.

During the second afternoon take 1-2 teaspoons of Epsom salts dissolved in hot water, cooled down. Rinse your mouth out with fresh water and drink some to get rid of the taste. Repeat this dose 1 hour after supper. (The dose can be larger, depending on how you react to Epsom salts. Rather start with a smaller dose, so the bowel purge begins the following morning, after you take the bedtime olive oil and lemon juice.)

At bedtime take ½ cup of olive oil mixed with ½ cup of lemon juice. Some people can drink more of this at a time. But after fat starvation for two days, it does down pretty well! (Never drink lemon juice or anything acidic with Epsom salts. It forms pockets of gas inside of you and is said to be very painful.)

Day 3: The next morning take another dose of Epsom salts and drink some more fresh water. Then wait for the call of nature. Make sure you are close to a toilet and stay in the house until the bowels are fully purged. Some people only respond by midday - but everybody does sooner or later. The smell of sulphur or rotten eggs is common due to the release of hydrogen sulphide form the Epsom salts. It is beneficial and helps to disinfect the gut lining and squish out a lot of archival muck.

Now you can eat normally again, but increase the grease gradually. It is interesting to note that over 90% of the patients who have gall stone surgery get them from eating wheat. But the sad thing is that they are not warned about this when they have to live without a gall bladder. Now you know.

Oleuropin has it all, they say!

Imagine buying a bottle of capsules that can provide these proven benefits:

  • Lowering cholesterol and blood pressure
  • Protecting blood vessels, improving circulation – especially to the brain
  • Burning fat, preventing fat formation and lowering blood sugar
  • Potent antioxidant effects
  • Slowing down of age-related cognitive decline
  • Anti-inflammatory effects, especially for joints
  • Helps to relieve arthritis and control microbial joint infestation
  • Kills microbes like viruses, fungi, pathogenic bacteria, worms and flukes
  • Controls candidiasis and does not harm beneficial gut bacteria
  • Oleuropein helps to relieve cramps as it has a significant anti-spasmodic effect

If this is what happens when you take an extract from an olive leaf, just imagine the effect of using the whole leaf! For one thing, you will get a lot of chlorophyll, to help you fight infections and control bad breath. You will get more trace elements and minerals. Saponins and key enzymes will be present – so that important chemical reactions can take place. Just as they do in nature. That helps to explain why olive leaves are generally so hardy and tough. One other thing – how do they resist the harsh Mediterranean sun? Perhaps there are more antioxidants present. Perhaps we will find more things to extract from the olive leaf. For now, it is simple enough to ingest olives, olive oil and olive leaves. All seem to be very beneficial if swallowed.

green juiceIt is best to find or buy your own

olive tree for the fresh leaves

There are two main families of olive trees. The Olea Europa is the fruit bearing variety. The leaf is hard and the underside has silvery hairs on it. Note that green and black olives come from the same tree, depending on how ripe they are. The other family is called Olea Afra and the leaves have a yellowish colour and are softer than the commercial Olea Europa.

It grows in the wild - along water courses it does not bear plump olives. At best it has a small, hard round fruit that is not used commercially. But the leaves make the most wonderful medicine of all. The trees grow in Africa, from Cape to Cairo. We make a point of checking out the Olea Afra trees in places we visited such as Zambia, Ethiopia and of course, Cairo. We also teach the local people have to use the leaves medicinally.

Livingstone airport in Zambia with the African olive leaves that helped the locals

Olive tree Livingstone airport

We received a letter from an African lady in Zambia who said that the olive leaf remedies she made had really helped her to get better. Our Ethiopian tour guide immediately started chewing the leaves when we explained it would help him to get rid of his parasites. Ethiopians use the olive tree twigs for cleaning their teeth so he was used to the bitter taste. Nobody had any idea of any of the medicinal properties of the wild olive leaves that grow there in abundance. But we changed that!

Olive leaf banned in New Zaaland

Wild Olive trees are banned in New Zealand.

The same species of wild olive trees that provide some of the most active chemicals like oleuropin is considered to be a weed, an unwanted alien invader in New Zealand. Here is the unappreciated Olea Afra tree on the right hand side of this picture. Sometimes I wonder about human logic. People who don't appreciate this resource will have to buy their olive leaf products from the health shop.

Now we travel with seven olive leaves in a tablet!

We prefer to travel with olive leaf tablets, especially because fresh leaves and any plants will be confiscated at the airports of most countries - especially New Zealand and Australia. So we took some olive leaf tablets with us on a visit to China. We had just come from Thailand and Malaysia and did not realise that my husband Jim had contracted malaria. We were on top of the Huang Shang Mountain for an overnight stay before the long descent when he broke out into a fever. He went delirious. I made him chew two olive leaf tablets every two hours before he fell asleep. He took them again the next morning and was able to leave the hotel by midday. When we got back to South Africa Jim had a second bout of malaria and this time it was confirmed by a doctor. Once again we only used the olive leaf tablets to the amazement of the doctor.

Now we always take some form of malaria and parasite control before and during the holiday. We usually take a combination of olive, ivy and Artemisia leaves for good measure and it also helps to keep travel tummy bugs at bay.

School lessons under the African Olive tree in Ethiopia. Eat the leaves!

Ethiopia under the olive tree

Add seven fresh olive leaves to the fruit and herb juices you make

  • Using the fresh green olive leaves is the best way to benefit from the most potent phytochemicals. Drinking tea mad from fresh or dried olive leaves is not as good because the boiling water nullifies some of the active ingredients. But the tea is said to lower blood pressure.
  • If you only have dried olive leaves you can soak them in water overnight and tip them with the water into the electric blender jug. To make the juice in bulk, work out how many leaves you use in a batch. As a guide, seven leaves are the equivalent to an olive leaf tablet.
  • So the jug will have x amount of doses. People usually take 2 – 4 of these doses a day to treat say, Candida or high blood pressure. You can add water to half fill the jug and add chunks of fruit like apple and lemon and even chopped spinach to it.
  • There are plenty of ways to make juice, so follow your favourite recipe and add the leaves. You do need to strain the pulp through a piece of cloth or a stocking before drinking it.
  • If you want to make an olive leaf concentrate then only process a few cups of olive leaves with water. Sieve this and pour it into an ice tray. Freeze the bright green (and very bitter) juice. Add as many cubes as you need to a glass of water or fruit and herb juice every day.

Artemisia takes a stand against malaria, night sweats and cancer

Artemisia annua (also known as Artemisia Afra) is a pungent herb that belongs to the wormwood family. This herb is a popular and effective treatment for malaria, especially with drug resistant strains. It was named after Artemis, the Goddess of Ephesus. Ephesus was the ancient Turkish port that was built near a swamp. It was deserted and became a derelict ruin due to a widespread malaria problem that wiped out most of the inhabitants a few centuries ago. If only they had known how to use Artemisia to treat malaria!

Artemisia from the garden

Artemisia annua is also a versatile dewormer and a general antimicrobial agent. The herb is good for night sweats and is beneficial for the menopause. But it is not suitable for pregnant or lactating women.) This herb should be growing in every garden! 500 mg per day of the dried herb was given to cancer patients during trials in China with great success. It delivers hydrogen peroxide directly to affected areas. It helps to control an excessive build-up of oestrogen in the liver and is now being regarded as the safest, cheapest form of herbal “chemotherapy”, especially for breast cancer.

Anamed is a Greman-based organisation that  provides valuable information about using Artemisia annua for treating as well as preventing malaria. They teach people how to grow the herbs themselves and use them to good effect. There is no guarantee that the extracted chemical arteminisin can do the job as well as a cup of Artemisia tea. This traditional remedy is easy enough to make and is an affordable malaria treatment for impoverished rural people to use.This Christian organisation has successfully cured many Africans of malaria and other infectious diseases by using Artemisia as shared in the recipe below. They serve all people and are truly what we call "good Samaritans." Here is their invitation, as quoted from their website.

"We invite you to work together with us - to enable people living in the Tropics to become more self-reliant in preventing and treating the most common diseases and health complaints - by utilising and developing their own resources."

The Artemisia recipe recommended for malaria by the Anamed foundation

Anamed gives free advice and support worldwide. Here is what they find to work the best:

Artemisia malaria treatment

1 photo canister = 5 g or 20 ml of dried Artemisia leaves is boiled in 1 litre of water for a few minutes. Fresh leaf equivalent is 10 g or a small handful (40 ml or a tablespoon) can be used if you have it growing in the garden.

Allow the decoction to cool and strain it. Drink 2 – 4 cups of the tea every day to treat Malaria. It is also taken by the whole family when there is a high risk of Malaria. This happens during the hot season, especially after rain if they live near water. Artemisia also helps to eliminate larger parasites like worms and flukes and helps with gut infections.

Do not allow pregnant women to take Artemisia

because it can over-stimulate the uterus

Artemisia is effective for older women suffering from night sweats and menopausal problems. It is helpful for fibrocystic breast disease and is used in conjunction with some cancer treatments. Olive leaves are a better option for pregnant and lactating women. It is best to use the fresh leaves in a juice (7 – 14) or take the whole olive leaf tablets. Olive leaf tablets or the tincture have been used to both treat and prevent Malaria when taken as advised by a practitioner. They are a more suitable option for pregnant women, babies and small children but only with the approval of your doctor. The olive leaf tea is not effective against microbes or parasites like malaria because the heat destroys this property. (Olive leaf tea is only good for high blood pressure.) Dried olive leaves can be added to the Artemisia tea. So can other herbs, like mint, ivy leaves, oregano, etc.

Artemisia extracts are not the same as using the whole leaf

The mystique that surrounds a health product is what fuels the fires of consumer expectation. Using extracts with unpronounceable names sounds important - reassuring and convincing enough to beguile the very elite of the health trade. Instead of curing malaria with the tried and trusted herb Artemisia Annua (Afra) Bill and Melinda Gates fell for the extraction gag. They invested millions in a drug made from an extract of Artemisia called arteminisin - hoping to cure malaria and save the lives of thousands of Africans. But what went wrong?

We know that the herb is very effective, and has worked for over 2000 years. But sick and dying people were being fobbed off with an extract that was not very effective against this killer disease in the long-term. The World Health Organisation is against the use of the extract, for fear of creating a drug-resistant problem with malaria. Why not sell tablets made from the whole plant or grow the plant and drink the tea? You can provide the health industry with a well-tested, reliable product that can be used to both prevent and treat multi-drug resistant malaria and you can still make an honest profit.

There are companies who sell the extract who can supply plenty of clinical evidence to substantiate their claims. Their products can “aid the body’s response to the schistosomiasis blood fluke (Bilharzia). Candida Albicans fungi and viruses including: Herpes simplex type 1, Epstein-Barr, hepatitis B and C. They say that further research arteminisin shows promising results with lupus, arthritis and even some cancers. Other references say that Arteminisin is proving to be effective against all forms of cancer. One would imagine that the original tea is something ladies should drink if they are serious about preventing breast cancer!

How to grow your own Artemisia from cuttings

Artemisia cuttings

  • Artemisia Afra / Annua (south African: wilde als) grows in most regions throughout Africa and many other parts of the world. It likes the sun and grows well in poor soil. The plants last for a few years at a time and only need a little watering. Most nurseries will have these plants for sale. Slips can be cut from mature woody stems and propagated, but it is not an easy plant to work with.
  • Take slips from woody stems where pruning took place 1 or 2 months beforehand. The tiny buds and shoots that form on the woody stem will be the new crop of leaves on your cutting.
  • For the pots, you can use old milk cartons cut in half or the bottom end of any old plastic bottles. Make drainage holes underneath. Fill them with river sand. If you have rooting hormone powder, treat the end of the slip and poke it into the soil.
  • Place the containers in a shady area and water them every few days. (Talking to them is also good.) You can use milk cartons cut in half and place 4 stems in each one with soil. Make drainage holes underneath.
  • After a few weeks the cuttings begin to root and the leaves get bigger. Plant each one out into the garden with a 50cm space around it. Make a wall around the stem and fill it with mulch. (Old leaves, twigs, compost or bark chips.) Now water it a few times a week.
  • After 2 or 3 months you can start to prune the young stems. When they are 20cm long, cut off the top half. Do this regardless of how thin the stem is because it stimulates the plant to thicken out.
  • Each pruned stem will now branch out from a cluster of new buds. If you do not cut the stems on the baby plants, they will not bush out. Instead you get a long wispy stem with few leaves and then it goes to seed. Never allow the branches to go to seed because the plant will die down. Harvest them when they have a good crop of leaves, even if they have some small buds. But keep pruning to stimulate the plant.
  • Strip off the leaves from the stems and dry the leaves on newspaper to keep for making the tea. Do not keep herbs in plastic bags or glass jars as it makes them go mouldy. It is best to wrap up the dried leaves by folding and rolling up the newspaper sheet. Secure it with a rubber band and write Artemisia and the harvesting date on it.
  • Remember that the dried leaf weighs 1/2 that of fresh leaf and is 1/2 the volume.

Ivy leaves are not poisonous - they make a good cough mixture

Garden ivycough mixture

Ivy leaves from the common garden creeper called Hedera helix is one of the best remedies for liver flukes. Ivy juice, tea or extracts are good for treating congestive mucous-laden coughs and persistent catarrh as well as sinusitis. They contain anti-oxidants and are anti-spasmodic - a boon for a tight chest! Ivy is safe to use and is non-toxic.it should not be confused with poison ivy, that causes a nasty rash on the skin if you touch it.

Is my garden ivy really going to cure inflammation and even cancer?

Ivy has anti-mutagenic properties. Research is showing it can to help fight some forms of cancer, especially those associated with parasites and microbes. It has profound inflammatory effects. Inflammation can be harmful in conditions such as life-threatening hypersensitive reactions to insect bites, drugs, toxins and in chronic diseases such as rheumatic arthritis, atherosclerosis, lung fibrosis and cancer. Inflammation accelerates cancer and chronic inflammation can be an essential cause of the progression of neoplastic and mutagenic processes. Promising studies using an ethanolic tincture of Hedera helix to treat inflammation are showing us the way. This valuable information is not widely known.

What can I do to benefit from chomping my ivy every day?

It does not taste too good, so juice it! Pick 2 leaves from this common creeper if you have a lot of mucous or a chest cough. The amount is the equivalent to the leaf content of a popular cough mixture made of ivy leaves. Add the fresh ivy leaves to the juice you make in an electric blender goblet with the other ingredients such as chopped fruit and of course, seven olive leaves. Tea can be made of dried leaves and mixed with Artemisia and olive leaves, but there is no guarantee that this is as effective as using fresh ivy juice or a tincture that contains ivy leaves.

Respect for the traditional use of herbs

But how can we justify the cost of trashing loads of this valuable plant material merely to extract the Arteminisin? Is it only the extract or could it also be the whole herb that is valuable to us as a medicine? The ancient Chinese and Indian herbalists never used extracts. Neither do our traditional healers of South Africa. In fact, nowhere in the world of natural medicine is an extract other than a juice, tea or tincture used. They use the herb as it is and that is because that is how it is presented to us in Nature and try to get the most out of it. Often heat deactivates certain properties, so juice or tea is taken for different reasons, even using the same leaves. An alcoholic tincture draws out different components – but not just a single chemical and usually takes 21 days to make a remedy.  

Artemisia Annua belongs in every garden where the leaves can be picked and used as a medicine to heal the sick. Many of us were treated with herbs from the garden and simple home remedies by our parents or grandparents. They worked because we trusted them. They knew they worked because the herbs were used over and over since the beginning of time. Trying to enforce laws against such an activity is futile. Even animals seek out and chew certain plants when they feel unwell. For instance, goats that chew a certain herb that grew on the mountain attracted the attention of the farmers. Now the herb is called Horny Goat weed and you can buy the tablets.

Trying to extract only one or two components from a perfectly balanced synergistic formulation within a leaf seems to be equally futile. We have to reconcile the research and stop messing with commerce and chemistry. If such claims are being made about the extract then surely they also apply to the herb. Why the cloak of exclusivity in a world that is starved of food, medicine and most of all – the truth? 

Popular herbalists such as Maria Treben and Margaret Roberts encourage us to use these herbs to heal our ailments. Their books provide help and inspiration for all. Even if we are unable to grow the herbs or make tea or juice out of them we can still buy herbal tinctures, tablets and capsules. Traditional healers do not recommend that you isolate the components within the herb. They also like to combine a selection of herbs to suit the needs of individual patients and their conditions. For thousands of years this has been the norm.

combination olive leaf, artemisia ivy cloces

One can use combinations of herbs and learn how to make tinctures. These are convenient to use and last for many years. For instance, a combination of Artemisia, Ivy, olive leaves and cloves can be taken as a general treatment for most parasites from viruses, Candidiasis and flukes to tapeworms.  But it can also be used as a mouthwash or gargle, to treat mouth ulcers, sore throats, bad breath or gum infections. Topically, it can be applied the skin, hair or scalp to control lice, mites, scabies, skin lesions and ringworm. It can also be used for pets.

There are two sides to the presentation and the cost of a remedy

The reason this makes the modern drug companies upset is because one cannot patent herbs. There is more chance of making money out of an extract or better still, a synthetic equivalent. The molecular look-alike can then be registered, packaged and sold at a remarkable profit. We can choose the medicines we want and take the risks involved. Not every herb is safe to ingest and one should seek the guidance of a knowledgeable practitioner. This is the reason some people prefer to go to a pharmacy and have their herbal remedy or extract dispensed by a kind man in a clean white jacket. When you pay a high price for a pill it works better, they say? You may laugh, but the placebo effect has a lot to do with the presentation of a remedy, even if it is an inactive sugar pill.

Bush herbs

On the other hand, a seedy looking street vendor may have a safer and more effective remedy, but hygiene and aesthetics do play a role in medicine! You get the whole leaf – but may also get a nasty dose of fecal contamination from animal or human sources. There is a limit to wild harvesting and some of the traditional healers in Africa do not respect conservation ethics. There is no sense to uproot an indigenous plant that is on the endangered list and slice up the priceless bulb to cure common diarrhoea that is usually caused by poor hygiene. Not many of these people wash their hands after taking a squat behind the bushes. I know what you are thinking. But hand washing is a pretty recent ritual for modern surgeons and the habit was only introduced as being essential in 1840.

Now we tend to overdo the sterilization and hygiene to the extent that we wipe out beneficial Parasite combinationbacteria (probiotics) and have introduced a spell of drug resistant diseases. Some of the patent medicines and drugs are proving to be hazardous and have been removed from the market place (no need to mention any names) and other drugs have a host of nasty side effects. One set of drugs is being prescribed to treat the side effects of other drugs. Something has gone horribly wrong here. Some patients read the package insert when they get home and dump the bottle of pills down the toilet. They are not going to take the risk. We have all heard the story of the doctors who do not allow patients to read about the warnings and side effects of expensive and highly profitable remedies. But they are half right, due to the power of the mind and the effect it has in manifesting beneficial as well as adverse effects. But toxins are toxins!

Culinary herbs and spices for instance, are not only to improve the taste of food. They are effective drugs in their own right. They play a huge role in traditional medicine and are now being studied and copied in laboratories so that new patent drugs can emerge. But cinnamon, ginger and turmeric have always been around and one cannot dispense them across the pharmacy counter. In that case, all grandmother and cooks should be arrested. Spices come from the roots, bark and seeds of the plant. Herbs come from the leaves of the plant. The plants come from Our Creator. They were put there for a purpose and are worthy of respect and appreciation. The complex chemistry within a plant’s leaf is to help it survive the onslaught of microbes, predators and parasites.

God’s Pharmacy grows on trees and costs nothing

Why take drugs when you can take your own herbs!

The classic story

This is the book that inspired me 14 years ago!

Olive Leaf Extract
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