Today I am again picking a subject of current interest to me: I have been going through – for the first time ever – an infection relating to the Urinary System. These situations, however, seem to be common out there, or so I learned by doing a bit of research, trying to get me the best solutions, i.e., the best herbs to combat and conquer this condition. They are especially common among women, due to the fact that our Urethra is much shorter than men’s, so the bug that causes this infection – E.coli – can travel more easily into our bladder. Wow!
Worse yet, this infection—common to about 20% of women—usually re-occurs once it has begun, so that women who have had it once usually can get it often, up to 3 times a year. Ugh!
You bet, that after I learned this, I vowed to find the best herbs and fully ignore antibiotics, which the Urgent Care lady I went to for help wanted to put me on!
The official name of these infections is Cystitis or UTI – Urinary Tract Infection.
One thing I have always kept available – just in case – is some Uva Ursi, a very powerful herb commonly used for UTIs. Uva Ursi is available in capsules, which I started taking, but I also got the dried herb and am making teas with it.
“Uva ursi” —Arctostaphylus, meaning “bear’s grape” in Latin. Actually, it is true! Bears are very fond of the fruit!
Uva ursi’s use goes all the way back to the 13th century in Europe when teas and extracts of the leaves began to be used as urinary tract antiseptics and diuretics. The plant has also been used as a laxative and the leaves have been smoked!
In the modern era, Bearberry teas and extracts have been used for pharmaceutical preparations, such as tinctures, and pills.
In fact, for many years, since I started making tinctures***, I always included one in my catalog which I called Pee Ease (pronounced “peas”!!)—I thought the name would sound funny and lessen the pain (!), and it turned out to be a really effective tincture!
In it I added some other herbs, besides Uva Ursi, very effective, even though till now I have never had need of them for myself, but was told so by those who took it!
Uva Ursi, by itself, is, again, very very effective.
But here are the herbs which really should accompany Uva Ursi:
Corn Silk, Usnea, Uva Ursi, Yarrow, Juniper Berries, Echinacea, Buchu, Marshmallow Root, Cleavers, Horsetail, Plantain, Pipsissewa.
Of the above, those I believe to be most effective are:
- Marshmallow Root, a truly soothing anti-irritant herb, great in any tea.
- Echinacea, a great antimicrobial.
- Horsetail helps against fluid retention, boosts immunity, relieves respiratory issues, protects/strengthens bones, & detoxifies the body.
- Pipssisewa also dries up fluids (is astringent) and kills Germs thus preventing infections.
- Yarrow is another one of my favorites (Achillea), helps with fever, common colds, menstruation issues –though I have never used it for the latter! – dysentery, loss of appetite, (GI) tract discomfort, and to induce sweating.
- Usnea is great for fungal, staph and urinary infections.
All of the above herbs are great additions to Uva Ursi, and when I make this tincture, I add them so that they strengthen each other and have the results I want them to have!
Note: However, when we are making a tincture, we must always be careful with the proportions for each herb, and the menstruum (fluid) that will help pull out the healing components of each herb.
If you want to make a tincture of some of the herbs we have so far discussed, please do NOT hesitate to email me, and I will help explain.
But for now, go ahead with the tea, using equal parts of each of the 4 herbs above, and half or a third of the rest.
Above all, have FUN with the herbs, experiment, see what you like or dislike in terms of taste, etc!
If you have questions on any of the above herbs and their use, please contact me:Ask Charoula about Herbs
All answers are posted on our website E-Wellness.com, on the following Friday.
Thanks for reading!
Holistic Health Advisor
BC Polarity Therapy Practitioner