Friday, September 17, 2010


The herb wintergreen contains salicylic acid, the active ingredient of aspirin. For many years we have been told that half an aspirin a day wards off heart attacks. Wintergreen is never mentioned.

Now we are told that a quarter of an aspirin a day can ward off bowel cancer. Still no mention of wintergreen.

There is no need to add to the profits of the pharmaceutical companies and risk the effects of additives in the pills.

Just plant some wintergreen.


Regina Richards said...

1 tsp. wintergreen oil = 22 aspirins

How much of the plant (not the oil) can you ingest safelt?

Romulus Crowe said...

Essential oils are highly concentrated and need to be treated with care. I have a small bottle of tea tree oil which, in its pure form, is corrosive but when diluted it's claimed to cure all sorts of things.

For most of the natural plants, the easy way is to make a tea or take a small amount in a salad. Depends on whether you like the taste - a tea does at least give the option of adding sugar! Heat won't damage the aspirin effect.

I'd have to look up the exact amounts but with most plants, if you ate too much you'd make yourself sick before you poisoned yourself.

It's also an individual thing - some will find they need more to get an effect than others, just as some use half an aspirin tablet and others use two.

Herbs can also be variable in their active components from year to year depending on growing conditions. A little meddling is required.

Don't tell the medics. That kind of talk scares them to death.

Regina Richards said...

The medics, at least here in the states, are getting quite sensitive to any self-treatment or home-remedies. They feel all the info available out there on the internet (even the stuff from reputable sources such as the NIH) is a threat to their business.

Southern Writer said...

That's interesting. All my life, I thought aspirin was made from vinegar. Learn something new every day.

Regina Richards said...

Do wintergreen breath mints count? I have a house full of teens so I keep a big jar of breath mints and gums in the kitchen. Mint and wintergreen flavors are the top two favorites.

tom sheepandgoats said...

There is no need to add to the profits of the pharmaceutical companies

Count yourself lucky that they don't advertize on TV, as they do in the states.

Decisive, immaculate and impossibly handsome doctors stride purposefully through futuristic laboratories. They glance alternately at teams of researchers peering into microscopes, at banks of computers, at their clipboard, and, of course, at YOU, as they authoritatively report the very latest astounding medical breakthrough. “Such-and-such is not right for everyone,” they acknowledge, “but...damn it, man,” they seem to be saying, “you know it's right for you!” Even as I write, I'm recalling one such “doctor” striding through a lab reminiscent of Batman's lair, touting some new med that unlocks the very “power of the sea,” (fish oil...the stuff you've been able to buy forever at any health foods store) and.....would you believe it?....the donkey actually ends his pitch peering contemplatively into the lab's full-wall aquarium, as if marveling how his outfit has managed to make a buck out of something God provided free.

This formula is not set in concrete. It can vary slightly. Alzheimer's, for example, afflicts our grandparents, and our grandparents are kindly, aren't they? So a brusque futuristic setting will not do. No. The setting here must be warmer, a kindly doctors office, for example, and the doctor himself ought to have gray hair. Antidepressants, too, ought to be touted by a kindly and caring doctor, not some brusque and handsome jerk who's Porsche vanity plates read “PSYCH DR.” For woman's health, we even change the doctor's gender, for isn't any guy specializing in female issues a little suspect? No longer is the doctor an impossibly handsome man. Now it's an impossibly attractive woman, who's also athletic, has piercing eyes and an oddly spelled first know, a Bond girl.

Romulus Crowe said...

SW- modern aspirin is chemically constructed but it's the same chemical in the end.

Vinegar itself can be produced either by natural fermentation or by chemical reaction - again, it's the same chemical.

Where it comes from determines only one thing - who makes money from it.

Romulus Crowe said...

Regina - I don't know about the mints. Depends if it's an actual extract or just flavouring. If it cures a headache, that's all that really matters, even if it's a placebo effect.

Romulus Crowe said...

Tom - they don't advertise on TV here (as far as I know, I rarely watch it myself). Instead they have 'lobby groups' to persuade government to impose restrictions on alternatives.

Fortunately, there are still those of us who regard the sensible approach to be 'do exactly the opposite of what the government says'.

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