1. Health & Lifestyle

Herbal Antibiotic

Dr. Sangeeta Soi
Dr. Sangeeta Soi

Herbal healers to ward off colds and flu, clear infections have long used herbal antibiotics 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. Stephen Harrod Buhner and related materials base this post on the book “Herbal Antibiotics”. We will start with some background information and then discuss antibiotic herbs and their use.

For relevant information: www.krishijagran.com

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. (This 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.

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

It is preferable to wear gloves during the preparation, especially during handling hot peppers because later it is difficult to remove the tingling! The smell is very strong, caution; it may immediately get your sinuses to work.


– 700 ml of apple cider vinegar
– ¼ cup finely chopped garlic
– ¼ cup finely grated onions
– 2 of the hottest fresh peppers that you can find (careful cleaning – wear gloves!!!)
– ¼ cup grated ginger
– 2 tablespoons grated horseradish
– 2 tablespoons turmeric powder or 2 pieces of turmeric root


Mix all ingredients except the apple cider vinegar in the bowl. Transfer them to a large glass jar. Pour the apple cider vinegar into the jar. Close and shake. Leave the jar in a cool dry place for two weeks. Every day, shake it as many times as you can, but at least once. After 14 days, strain through a sieve with a cheesecloth added plus. The rest of the dry mixture can be used in cooking. The resulting liquid is your tonic. No need to keep it in the refrigerator.

Tip: You can also use it in the kitchen – mix it with olive oil and use it as a salad dressing or stewing.

Dosage for the Medieval Tonic:

Caution: The flavor is very strong, very hot!

Tip: Prepare and eat a slice of orange, lemon or lime after you take the tonic to ease the burning. Put the tonic in the mouth, gargle briefly, and swallow. Do not dilute it with water because the effect will not be as strong.
For strengthening the immune system and treating cold, drink 1 tablespoon each day.
Take it slow to drink a dose of 1 small glass a day (cup of liquor).

If you are fighting some serious illness and infection, take 1 tablespoon of the tonic 5-6 times a day.

Can be used during pregnancy and it is safe for children (use small doses!) Because the ingredients are natural and non-toxic.

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