BACK TO ASK THE HERBALIST
ANSWERS FROM CARLOS:
I have been searching for a source for a plant called
"Hog Moss Plant". The Amish people use this plant for
I searched Google with no results. I haven't found an
Herb Company that knows of it. I'm wondering if it
is actually a weed of some sort and the weed is called
"Hog Moss" by the Amish.
First allow me to say that The only real treatment for
cataracts is surgical intervention.
I believe what may be happening here is that you have
been given a "local" name for Iceland Moss, and what it
treats is catarrh which is a disorder of inflammation of
the mucous membranes. Other than that, I am at a loss.
If you find out what this "Hog Moss" is, please let us
I am seeking
information for my Mother, she has been dealing with
Glaucoma for awhile now, she had surgery on one eye and
it was successful but they do not want to do the other
eye. I have heard great things about using Frankincense
around the eyes, on eyelids and rubbed on palms covering
eyes, with eyes open for 5 minutes. Do you know anything
about this treatment? Should she use her drops as well
as this treatment, she doesn't do well with the drops.
Is this something that should be continued through her
life or just until her levels increase? Also my Father
was diagnosed with throat cancer and I also heard
Frankincense is being recognized as a cancer treatment,
what do you know about this? What dosage and how often?
Actually the verdict on why Frankincense may help with
glaucoma is still out. we just don't really know why,
but it seems many folks have gotten positive results.
My first suggestion is that you consult with your eye
doctor before attempting any new therapy.
If you do plan to engage on this I would recommend that
you find the highest quality Frankincense you can find.
Silver comes to mind as a good quality. The lighter the
color the better.
A good combination may be 5 drops of essential oil of
Frankincense and 5 drops of essential oil of Lavender
diluted in 1 tablespoon of Hemp oil.
Before eliminating the drops please consult with her
doctor. He may allow you a few days to try the new
Frankincense has been used since Biblical times for its
healing properties. In Traditional Chinese Medicine it
is principally used for its Qi regulating properties. A
great formula for this is called Qi Li San. No
doubt, this ancient prescription provided the
inspiration for the 20th century formula Yunnan
Bai Yao, an aromatic blend that is currently the
most famous injury remedy in Asia.
Although not really recognized as a cancer treatment,
current thought is that one of the 17 active agents in
frankincense essential oil may be the one effective in
treating certain cancers.
Frankincense is only taken internally in certain TCM and
Ayurvedic formulas, otherwise it is only used
externally. For that purpose your Dad may want to
massage the throat area with 2 drops of essential oil of
Frankincense, 5 drops of essential oil of Chamomile
diluted in 2 teaspoons of Almond, Hemp, or vegetable
I suggest that both mom and dad follow a healthy diet
and a low-level exercise regimen. Avoid red meats, pork,
white sugar, all dairy and all fried foods. They should
enhance their diet with plenty of fresh locally grown
vegetables and fruits, brown rice, fresh garlic and
onions, plenty of fiber and grains. they should stick to
fresh fish, salmon and mackerel are great for Omega-3,
chicken, turkey and Cornish hen.
They both should consume Green tea 3xs day. Sweeten only
with a bit of honey. Adding a few drops per cup of
tincture of Dandelion to these would be perfect to clear
out toxins, as well adding 5 drops per cup of tincture
of Astragalus would certainly be of great help to
supplement their immune system.
There have been positive results dealing with glaucoma
with a medication named Marinol, it does have some
side-effects, and does not always work well. Far
healthier and safer have been the studies using Cannabis
as a treatment alternative. If living in California, I
suggest you consult with your physician and obtain his
professional and open-minded opinion as to this option.
ANSWERS FROM AMANDA:
I have an inflamed optic nerve that is severely
restricting my vision in my right eye. After a thorough
exam, the retina specialist that I went to had no answer
except to try steroids or an aspirin a day! There is
no pain, and no other symptoms. I have been taking blue
green algae and I have been to my chiropractor to remove
nerve interference, but I see no movement in my
condition. Any suggestions?
Inflamed nerves may respond to anti-inflammatory herbs
such as St. Johnswort and Licorice, along with specifics
for healthy vision such as the antioxidant Bilberry
leaf, You might try combining these as liquids extracts:
1 part St. Johnswort extract with 1 part Bilberry leaf
extract and 1/4 part Licorice extract. Mix well, take
1/2 teaspoon three times a day for a month. To get to
the reason your optic nerve is inflamed will require
professional help. Depending on the cause, you may also
benefit from following the Bates method of improving
vision. You can search locally in your area to
find qualified people who can help you with this simple
and effective technique for improving your eyesight.
ANSWERS FROM LORYHL:
I have constant discharge from my eyes, the right is
worst. it feels like soft matter with occasional grit
and it seems to be going worse. I have been prescribed
eye drops for lubrication with no positive effect. I
want something that will eliminate this condition.
The problem could be for many reasons, the most common
being infestation of Candida albicans, irritants from a
factory or lifestyle, or some other toxic substance. It
is most likely a combination, with main reason being
toxin, ie: in the body, like candida, or some other low
level infection, or infestation.
read the downloads, on diet, cleansing, the use of herbs
and foods, and if you are interested, I will tell you
what to wash your eyes with, and herbs for the liver, as
eye and liver are related in health. You will need to
rid your body of the toxin, in order to solve the
problem, knowing your blood type would also be helpful,
age and what your diet is like.
Are there herbs or vitamins that I can take to help my
eyesight? I have been to the MD who says I do not have
eye diseases but my vision is decreasing. I'm 58 and
have worn contacts since age 18.
Like a car that needs a tune up and a cleaning so does
your body! Look at the downloads, and clean yourself
out, and take the following herbs, for the rest of your
- pure, bilberry fruit, 3 capsules, 2 or three times
- gingko biloba, 3 capsules, two times daily
- COQ10, 400 mg daily, with 4000 mg Ester C, daily
- eat lots of whole grains, nuts, seeds, fruits,
veggies, and pure water, exercise, and get acupuncture,
for your eyes, also
Let us know if we can supply some of our great
blends for you, and to make sure if you have any
questions, we will do our best to answer them
My problem is that I have a son and he is suffering from
high myopia. His glass numbers for both his eyes is
14.00. Iím very stressed when I heard that the numbers
will keep on increasing until he reaches the age of 20
years. Iím also afraid whether he might lose his vision
but I have full faith in my God. Thatís why I think
that God has shown me your path. Please help my son
improve his vision.
I suggest you do the gall bladder flush with your son,
to remove toxinS, and improve the quality of his inner
tissue, including the eyes. I suggest raw carrot juice,
one to two glasses daily. Pure bilberry fruit, 3 pills,
3 times daily, COQ10, 100 mg pills, 4 per day, 2000 mg
Ester C, daily. Fresh fruit and veggies, not much red
meat, and organic, or wild caught if possible.
I've read online that people taking certain herbs
to cleanse their body have noticed
their eyes lightening in color. have you ever heard of
this happening and is it possible? I'd love to have
lighter eyes so.. :)
I have seen what you are talking about. When a person
has toxins and imbalance in the body, and they do a
flush, or a cleanse, the eye colour can change. Perhaps
it will get lighter, or it will become a clearer colour,
or even change from a green to a grey to a blue, as the
body is healed. This study of the eye , according to the
body, and what it says is called iridology. Please read
the suggested cleansing program, and take a look at it
so that you can decide what you would like to do.
Depending on your age, and how much your body needs to
cleanse will be indicative of what herbs to use while
you cleanse. If you would give me some more info, I
could assist you further. Your eyes may or may not
change colour. It sounds like you don't care for the
coulor of your eyes, if so why not, what about them is
ANSWERS FROM KAREN:
Do you know of any herbs or homeopathic products that
can help fuch's disease?
You got me with that one. I had to do some research to
find out what it was. As you are aware, it is a
condition of the cornea. Not being an eye doctor, I
think your best bet is to speak with your eye doctor and
get his/her recommendations. Lutein and bilberry are the
herbs I would recommend for all around eye support.
There is also a group that I found that might be able to
help you with more information. Here is their e-mail.
QUESTION: I have heard that after many years of
certain herbs ( turkey rhubarb maybe) people have had
their eye color changed, or cleared up or whatever. some
people say that their eyes went from black to brown etc.
Is this true? if so what herb do you suggest?
ANSWER: I'm not aware of any herb that will change
the color of your eyes. That comes from Mom and Dad!
I recently saw the website when searching for different
herbs. I am currently suffering from atrophy of the
optic nerve. I did have surgery 16 weeks ago to remove
a brain tumor, and have been left with blurry vision and
a loss in peripheral vision. Mainly in my left eye, but
there is some damage in the right eye also. Is there
any herbs that you feel that could help me and my
condition. The doctors say that it is a waiting game,
but I would love to get my life back on track. Thank
There are a couple of herbs you can take for your eye
health. Eyebright and Bilberry are two of my personal
favorites. I recently had laser surgery on my eyes and
take bilberry every day to aid in my healing. You can get
them at any good health food store in capsules or tea
have been diagnosis recently with Macular Dystrophy by
the Emory Eye Clinic (Emory University). So far, I have
been told there is no cure. I heard the famous Paul
Harvey advertise a nutritional vitamin called, Ocular
Nutrition by Hi-Health. I have been told that the
vitamin Luten is very necessary to help
prevent blindness and in some cases this Ocular
Nutrition vitamin according to Paul Harvey has patients
actually seeing better. This disease has caused a major
adjustment in my life. I am a minister, administrative
assistant for a large architectural and enginner firm, a
floral designer and was very active in my bookclub.
Now, everything has changed... I cannot drive to
unknown areas, as well. My question is: Does Luten
help with this disease? And, what is the difference
between the contents of Ocular Nutrition and the over
the counter drugs similar but much lower in price?
Also, one more, can I purchase Luten alone and get the
same results? Thanking you in advance for any help you
may have for this disease.
I can't speak to the Ocular Nutrition as I'm not
familiar with the product. I only deal in pure herbs, so
anything that is a compound with other things wouldn't
be something I'd have any experience with. I can tell
you that bilberry extract over 160 mg per day, and fresh
blueberries are two things you can do that are wonderful
for the health of your eyes. Also Ginkgo Biloba extract
and zinc can help halt the loss of vision. As always,
diet plays a critical role, so you must increase your
consumption of legumes, yellow vegetables, blueberries,
cherries and foods rich in vitamins E and C. You should
be taking a vitamin supplement of A, C, and E and Zinc
every single day. In addition, beta-carotene is the best
thing to take for your eyes and carrots are full of it.
It is believed that macular degeneration and dystrophy
are caused by free radical damage similar to what causes
cataracts. Good food and vitamins every day will help
alleviate those things. You must avoid cigarette smoke,
all sugars, saturated fats and foods containing fats and
oils that have been subjected to heat and or exposed to
the air. Yep, that means fried foods, hamburgers, lunch
meats and roasted nuts. Use only olive oil and sautť
your foods. But no more frying! Lastly, make sure you
always wear sunglasses outside. The ultraviolet rays of
the sun aren't helping your condition.
QUESTION: My husband woke up one morning and had
his vision split and distorted. After having an MRI
and then being sent to a retina specialist, it was
determined he has macular degeneration (wet). They
were amazed that he woke up and had it in both eyes.
They immediately cauterized the eyes (laser surgery).
This happened about weeks ago. He is 57 years old.
I asked about bilberry at the doctors office and they said
you have to be careful because some herbs react with
macular degeneration. He also is a smoker and Beta
Carotene has been known to play a part with lung cancer.
Can you advise me on what type of vitamins or herbs he can
take. Please, today I bought Ocuvite Lutein.
ANSWER: I'm so sorry to hear about your husband.
Fortunately, there are several things you can do that are
healthy alternatives to anything the pharmaceutical
companies may suggest. First, he should stop smoking
immediately. I know that's probably a given, but external
and internal toxins are one of the causes of MD, so he's
making it worse by continuing to smoke. For supplements,
he needs to be taking beta carotene, 2000 I.U. daily.
Also, Vitamins A, C, E and Selenium. You can get this
compound at the health food store. It is called ACES and
is excellent. Zinc also has an excellent track record in
the treatment of MD. For herbs, bilberry is excellent as
is ginkgo Biloba and grape seed extract. All of these are
available at your local health food store. As for foods,
blueberries are rich in flavonoids and raw fruits and
vegetables, especially berries, cherries and yellow
veggies. Things to avoid - Smoking is at the top of the
list. Next is white sugar, saturated fats and processed
I 'm taking Bilberry to improve my vision. Do you have
any suggestions to naturally improve vision? I am very
nearsighted. I have taken hormones to start my menstrual
cycle. Hopefully they help.
Bilberry is an excellent herb for vision as well. The
increase of circulation is what benefits the eyes.
Black Cohosh and yarrow will help with your eyesight as
well as your menstrual issues.
is normally used to improve circulation. It can help
reduce sugar in the blood and stimulates the urinary
system, helping the bladder and the kidneys. To bring
on your normal cycle, try blue Cohosh, dong quai, ginger
root, motherwort, mugwort, pennyroyal or yarrow.
ANSWERS FROM DAVID:
QUESTION: Are there any herbs for the relief and/or
cure for glaucoma?
ANSWER: The herbs have been used for Glaucoma or eye are
herbs good for the eye.
Ginkgo, Latin Name: Ginkgo Biloba - Good for Glaucoma and other eye
problems including circulation
Bilberry/Blueberry Fruit, Latin Name: Vaccinium sp - weak vessels
integrity and increased circulation to eyes
Bugleweed, Latin Name: Lycopus virginicus - used for bulging
Elder berries, Latin Named: Sambucus nigra - increase vascular
integrity and circulation, increase eyes ability to see
Gou qi zi (Lycium fruit, Wolfberry), Latin Name:Lycium chinensis -
spots in eyes, floaters, excessive tearing, poor or cloudy vision,
poor night vision and all conditions of the eyes such as degeneration
of cateracts, diabetic retinapathy, macular degeneration, peripheral
Chrysanthemum, Latin Name: Chrysanthemum moriflorium - signs
associated with eyes: red, painful eyes especially with a lack of
tears, light sensitivity, dizziness associated with vision, cloudy
Nu Zhen zi, Shiny Privet, Ligustrum fruit, Latin Named: Ligustrum
lucidum - Eye problems such as cataracts, retinitis, macular
degeneration, poor night vision, dry, irritated, red eyes, etc.
Calendula, Pot Marigold, Latin Name: Calendula officinalis - Great for
the eyes, Rich in flavanoids such as carotinoids especially luten
which is specific to eyes. Increases integrity of veins,
arteries and capillaries.
Supplements suggested for eyes and Glaucoma include:
Alpha Lipoic Acid
In your diet choose and eat your foods by color the Red, Orange,
Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo and Violet these colors help with health.
This article was download from www.Healthwell.com
The term glaucoma describes a group of eye conditions that are usually
associated with increased intraocular pressure (pressure within the
eyeball). This increase in pressure can ultimately cause blindness if
left untreated. In many cases, the cause of glaucoma is unknown.
Because glaucoma may not cause any symptoms until it has reached an
advanced and irreversible stage, regular eye exams are recommended,
especially after the age of forty. Conventional medications are
frequently effective in reducing intraocular pressure. Therefore, it
is important for people with glaucoma to be under the care of an
Dietary changes that may be helpful: At least two older reports
claimed that allergy can be a triggering factor for glaucoma.1 2
Although an association between allergy and glaucoma is not generally
accepted in conventional medicine, it seems reasonable for someone
with glaucoma to consult a physician to diagnose and treat possible
Nutritional supplements and other natural therapies that may be
helpful: Several studies have shown that supplementing with vitamin C
can significantly reduce elevated intraocular pressure in individuals
with glaucoma.3 These studies used at least 2 grams per day of vitamin
C, but sometimes much larger amounts were given. Higher quantities of
vitamin C appeared to be more effective than smaller amounts.
Doctors often suggest that people with glaucoma take vitamin C to
“bowel tolerance.”4 The bowel-tolerance level is
determined by progressively increasing vitamin C intake until loose
stools or abdominal pain occurs, and then reducing the amount
slightly, to a level that does not cause these symptoms. The
bowel-tolerance level varies considerably from person to person,
usually ranging from about 5 to 20 or more grams per day. Vitamin C
does not cure glaucoma and must be used continually to maintain a
reduction in intraocular pressure.
Many years ago, the flavonoid rutin was reported to increase the
effectiveness of conventional medication in people with glaucoma.5 The
amount used—20 mg three times per day—was quite
moderate. Seventeen of 26 eyes with glaucoma showed clear improvement.
The effects of rutin or other flavonoids in people with glaucoma have
apparently not been studied since.
Supplementing with 0.5 mg of melatonin lowered intraocular pressure of
healthy people,6 but there have been no studies on the effects of
melatonin in people with glaucoma.
Magnesium can act as a dilator of blood vessels. One study looked at
whether magnesium might improve vision in people with glaucoma by
enhancing blood flow to the eyes. In that trial, people were given 245
mg of magnesium per day. Improvement in vision was noted after four
weeks, but the change did not quite reach statistical significance.7
There is some evidence that alpha lipoic acid, taken in the amount of
150 mg per day for one month, improves visual function in people with
stage I or stage II open-angle glaucoma.8
Surveys have shown that Eskimos, who consume large amounts of omega-3
fatty acids, have a much lower incidence of open-angle glaucoma than
do Caucasians. Although there have been no studies on the use of
omega-3 fatty acids in glaucoma, supplementing with cod-liver oil (a
rich source of omega-3 fatty acids) reduced intraocular pressure in
MORE ON GLAUCOMA
QUESTION: I have normal tension glaucoma and am always on
the lookout for remedies without harmful side effects. I have read
that an eyewash made from coleus forskohlii can lower intraocular
pressure without causing harm. Do you know how I can obtain the
eyewash or make it myself?
ANSWER: COLEUS, Coleus forskohlii Latin Named:
An aromatic perennial with tuberlike roots and an erect stem reaching
2 feet. Native to India, Coleus grows on the dry slopes of the Indian
plains and in the foothills of the Himalayas.
Native to India, Coleus is used in Indian folk medicine rather than
within the Ayurvedic tradition and is a traditional digestive remedy.
It shot to fame in Western medical circles when one of its
constituents, forskolin, was first isolated in the
1970s. Research by an Indian/German company showed that forskolin was
a powerful medicine for various conditions, including heart failure,
glaucoma and bronchial asthma. It also exhibited non specific
spasmolytic activity on smooth muscle of gastrointestinal tract in
guinea pig. Topical ocular application of forskolin lowered intra
ocular pressure in rabbits, monkeys and humans.
Coleus is used in treatments to relieve glaucoma pressure within the
eye. It has been reported is several studies to lower the intraocular
pressure in patients with glaucoma. Forskoliin was an
experiment eye drop found to reduce eye pressure. It was abandoned
because the eye drops produced a milky covering over the eye.
This side affect is eliminated by taking the herb orally as a tea,
extract or pill.
Preparation: Decoction of root, make a decoction with 15 g root and
500 ml water. Drink in small doses over 2 days. Infusion of
leaves to relieve gas and bloating, drink
1 cup twice a day.
AND EYE PROBLEMS
I have rosacea and have eye problem. I read that taking Oregon
Grape Root will help relieve the problems with my eyes. My
eyes often burn and I lose my eye lashes. It is supposed to also
be good for the skin. I flush mostly with heat but also with
alcohol and spicy food which I avoid completely.
Can you help me with any more information on this herb, the quantity I
should take daily, and the counter indication, if any.
If you know of any other herb that would help my problem, please let
Thank you in advance.
ANSWER: Oregon Grape Root, Latin Name: Mahonia
aquafolium is a great alterative herb, helping the body to eliminate
wastes and good for liver insufficiency, it is a strongly bitter herb
with a active constituent called berberine. Berberine acts as
broad spectrum antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral agents. It
is an herb suggested for skin problems associated with congested liver
Herbs associated with Rosacea include:
Figwort, Latin Name: Sacrophularia nodosa / S.
Red Alder/Tag Alder, Latin Name: Alnus rubra/Alnus
Gotu kola, Latin Name: Centella asiatica
QUESTION: I have had congunctivitus for over ten years. I
have tried everything. I had to give up my contacts after 20 years and
go to glasses. I work outside in Arizona and glasses don't work too
well. Is there anything you could suggest that could cure or help me
with this chronic condition?
ANSWER: Conjunctivitis may also be called
"pinkeye," because it is an inflammation of the conjunctiva,
which is the clear membrane that covers the eyeball.
The eye may appear bloodshot, have crusty discharge and scratchy
feeling like something is in the eye.
Conjunctivitis can be caused by viral and bacterial infection such as
germs which cause the common cold and the Herpes virus, allergies,
pollutants/irritants such as smoke or chemicals such as chlorine or
contact lens solution, or injuries to the eye.
Herbal teas/tinctures traditionally used have been applied to the eyes
directly, or in compress or poultice form. Note: dilute
alcohol based tinctures with saline water and thoroughly strain any
preparations to be used in the eye, because particulates can irritate
the eye and if absolute sterility is not assured,
further serious infection may occur.
Dr Christopher suggests a Cayenne Pepper eyewash preparation he sells,
I have never tried it.
The herbs Barberry, Oregon Grape and Goldenseal contain
berberine, a substance with antimicrobial and antibacterial
properties. A pharmaceutical preparation is made based on
berberine, that is routinely used in Germany for conjunctivitis.
The herb calendula has anti-inflammatory and
antiseptic characteristics and the orange carotenoids are specific to
Chamomile has also been used to soothe conjunctivitis symptoms and is
It is suggested that those who suffer from chronic conjunctivitis have
a Vitamin A deficiency, but this does not substantiate its use to
treat or prevent the condition.
Bee Propolis has also been used for this condition.
Finally I would increase water intake to upwards a gallon a day (try
to get a ounce for each body pound you way).
Use vitamin C 5-10 grams or to bowel tolerance.
Bilberry and Blueberry are specific to eye health.
Finally George O. Dever, a holistic eye doctor from Seattle did
a lecture at American Herbalist Guild conference 1999 and spoke on
herbal and alternative approaches to eye treatment.
You may want to get the proceedings from this conference
QUESTION: I have a dear friend, 68 with adult onset
diabetes and a history of cancer who has been told that she is
developing glaucoma and retinopathy. She has asked me what
herbal protocols might halt the advance of this disease state. I
immediately thought of Yarrow to assist in shrinking the capilaries
near and around the eyes (along with many other healing benefits) but
I would like to know what other herbal/nutritional protocols that you
can advise. I will help her to sort through the information and
get her anything necessary if I have not made the particular medicine
problems are a major problem for the elderly and especially those with
diabetes. For diabetics control of sugar levels is critical, adult
onset can usually be corrected with weight loss and exercise. These
supplements have been associated with improvements to eye conditions