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Ask the Herbalist--Throat

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QUESTION: my doctor put me on Lexapro and Clonazepam for a problem I had w/my throat that they call Cricopharyngeal. when I started noticing it, it freaked me out, cause it feels like someone is strangling me w/their hand tightly, and then came on my anxiety attacks, so that's where I'm at. there not helping anymore, besides their killing my body, I use to be very active, walking and doing aerobics, now I hurt all over, my body is not the same since I've been on them. I want to get off of them, and get on natural herbs, I'm fixing to detoxify myself like u told others and I have been winging myself off of Lexapro, but the Clonazepam I haven't cause that's what helps my throat some, on afraid of getting off cause I so don't like the feeling I get in my throat. I know how to settle myself down from having anxiety attacks, but my throat can get so tight its over whelming, please can u give me some advice on this matter, thank u for the time u have given to me and everyone,

ANSWER: Many thanks for your kind words. I do what I can. A yearly or six month detox does wonders. As you have read Dandelion root is the greatest detoxifier of all. I suggest a 48 hour fast drinking only Green tea with 20-25 drops of extract or tincture of Dandelion. Drink 4-5xs day and also drink plenty of fresh water. You may eat yogurt if hunger overtakes you.  After your fast continue drinking the above, but change to 10 drops of the Dandelion extract and add 15 drops of extract of Lemon balm and 5 drops extract of St. John's Wort. Sweeten only with a bit of honey. Drink 2-3xs day.  This will help with the anxiety attacks. Bu Nao Wan a great Chinese formula can also be of help here.   

Foods that will counter anxiety: Apricot, Cherry, Date, Fig, Grape, Grapefruit, Olive, Papaya, Peach, Strawberry, Tomato, Beet, Button mushroom, Cabbage, Carrot, Celery, Chard, Cucumber, Eggplant, Kuzu, Lettuce, Potato, Shitake mushroom, Spearmint, Squash, Sweet Potato, Yam, Almond, Chestnut, Coconut, Sesame seed/oil, Sunflower seed, Stevia, Ganoderma, Dill, Basil, Mulberry, Lemons, Brown rice, Oats, Ghee and Green tea.  Avoid processed foods, foods with presrvatives, red meats, pork, white sugar, all dairy, all fried foods, luncheon meats, baked beans, hot dogs, white potatoes, peanuts, tangerine, asparagus, soy milk, spinach, chips, pasta and fruit juices.  For sugar use Stevia, and for salt Kosher salt (it contains only 12% sodium versus 25% in regular salt). 

Now as to your throat. There are several Chinese formulas that may help, among them: Lie Shen Wan and Hou Yan Wan. In my opinion if you can control the anxiety and avoid the stress it causes, this will alleviate or fix the throat problem.  I suggest you do an evaluation to determine what best treatment plan for you to follow individually. If interested please view: http://tcmconsultants.org/FAQs%20&%20Evaluation.htm or contact me directly at: admin@tcmconsultants.org

: I hope you can help, my mum is on beta blockers for her heart. She also has phlegm in her throat, making it hard to swallow tablets.  Is lobelia good for removing phlegm? Can she take it with beta blockers? If not, do you have another suggestion?

ANSWER: Lobelia is anitspasmodic, and used for respiratory and muscle disorders. It is not used for phelgm in the throat. The following herbs will help with that: Ginger, Fritillaria, Pinellia, Platycodon and Licorice. The best 3 are Ginger, Fritillaria and Pinellia.  Make an infusion from fresh Ginger root and add 10 drops extract of Fritillaria and 15 drops extract of Pinellia. Sweeten only with a bit of honey and drink as needed.

QUESTION: Two years ago I got a bad case of the flu.  After all the symptoms were gone my lower throat remained sore, and is still sore today.  I have been diagnosed with acid reflux disease but was told that it was not bad enough to be causing my throat pain.  I've been to several specialist, tested for diseases and had scopes ran down my throat.  The Doctors agree that I have a problem and that my throat is very red and irritated but can find no reason for my pain.  What I'm hoping for by writing to you is a little relief from
the soreness.  Any help you can give will be greatly appreciated.

ANSWER: That's a little curious. For the sore throat, I would try mullein, licorice root, slippery elm and horehound. but I would also take something to build up your system a little. Make sure you are taking 2000 mg of Vitamin C every day. Plus, goldenseal and echinacea tea. Don't take this for over 2 weeks without a break.

I have a great tea for sore throats that many of my smoking clients like. It's called Sore Throat Tea and can be found on the website at www.allgoodegifts.com  in The Apothecary in the Herb Shoppe. As a side note, if you are a smoker or are exposed to 2'nd hand smoke, you need to avoid that at all costs.

I have been searching the web for an old cough remedy me grandmother gave to me and it works. The problem is I do not know the how many parts  of each ingredient to put in the mixture. I hope you can help me. The cough syrup is HONEY, LEMON and WHISKEY OR BRANDY, my  caught is caused by too much heat in my apartment ( I don't control it ) and it dries out my throat. I only get the cough at bedtime when I lay down. It is not from nasal drip. It is just a  tickle in my throat and makes me cough, and because of it I have trouble falling asleep.

ANSWER: I can't say I recommend alcohol to deal with a throat irritation. I like to use licorice root and mullein in my sore throat and cough remedies. They soothe the throat and encourage healing.

I am working on the healing of my vocal cord, which has a hemorrhage, and
has left me with very little speaking voice.  The doctor gave me vocal exercises to do, and I must speak very quietly, but the healing is quite slow.  Do you have herbal recommendations?

Here's a recipe for a tea that should help. 2 parts licorice root, 1 part cinnamon, 1 part Echinacea, 1 part marsh mallow root, 1 part mullein and 1/8 part ginger. Combine all the ingredients in a tea ball or muslin bag and steep for 10 minutes. You can also make a spray from 1 tsp Echinacea, 1 tsp licorice, 1 tsp sage, 1 cup distilled water and a few drops of tea tree Essential oil or eucalyptus oil.  put all the herbs and the water in a saucepan and heat slowly for 20 to 45 minutes, covered.  Add the essential oils after the tea has steeped. put in a mister or spray bottle and squirt into the back of the throat as needed.