Although this article tends to focus on natural antibiotics for viral infections, the following herbs are equally powerful fighters against bacterial infections as well.
- Echinacea – contains properdin, which strengthens the immune system. It is also antibiotic and acts like interferon, the body’s own antiviral compound. Note: Do not use the rootstock once it has lost its odor. (Warning: It should be used with caution by those who are pregnant, or allergic to ragweed or plants in the sunflower family. Because it stimulates the immune system, it should not be taken for lengthy periods by those with autoimmune disorders.
- Garlic - contains allicin, one of the plant kingdom’s most potent, broad spectrum antibiotics (but only if eaten raw). Dice it up raw (or put it in a garlic press) and put it in juice or spread it on surface infections: or take garlic oil or garlic concentrate tablets. Here is another successful formula: Put tomato juice into a blender, along with 3 cloves of garlic. Drink it at various times throughout the day. Cooked garlic lacks the antibiotic factors. Garlic is powerful against bacterial, viral, and fungal infections.
- Goldenseal - contains berberine and hydrastine, and is a broad-spectrum herbal antibiotic. Berberine is an immune stimulant. (Berberine is also in barberry root bark and Oregon grape root, two other antibiotics.) Warning: Goldenseal is a powerful alkaloid and should not be overused. Two or three #00 capsules per day are safe and adequate for most conditions. Normally, don’t use it more than a week at a time. Excessive use diminishes Vitamin B absorption, by killing certain intestinal bacteria. Don’t use large amounts during hypoglycemia. Those with high blood pressure or insomnia should not use it.
- Juniper berries – contains deoxypodophyllotoxin, which inhibits a number of different viruses. Warning: Large doses of juniper berries can be irritating to kidneys and urinary passages. It should not be used during pregnancy, nor by persons with kidney disease.
- Ginger – contains 10 antiviral compounds called sesquiterpenes.
- Lemon balm – is also antiviral.
- Shiitake – a tasty Asian mushroom which contains lentinan, an antiviral, immune-stimulating, and anti-tumor compound.
- Dragon’s Blood – a South American herb which has dimethylcedrusine and taspine: these have antiviral and wound-healing properties.
- Eucalyptus – contains hyperoside, quercitrin and tannic acid, which have virus-killing functions.
- Olive leaf extract – a powerful antibiotic, and is excellent for viral infections, the common cold, arthritis, skin diseases, heart trouble and much more.
- Licorice – has eight active antiviral compounds including glycyrrhizin, which keeps viruses from replicating. Licorice has the most bactericidal compounds (up to 33% antibacterial compounds on a dry-weight basis). It also has saponins, which increase the availability of other antibiotic compounds.
Other herbs rich in bactericidal compounds, in descending order of potency, include thyme, hops, oregano, and rosemary.
Remember that you can always use licorice extract and/or ginger to help sweeten and flavor your tea with other antibiotic herbs.
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