Home Remedies - Onions, Garlic and Cabbage - McDowell's Herbal Treatments



In the Middle Ages, onions were used as a charm to ward off the Plague. According to Nicholas Culpeper (1616-1654), "the juice .... dropped into the ears eases the pains and noises in them." Until comparatively recently it was not uncommon for a mother to put the warmed core of an onion, or some onion juice, into her child's ear to relieve the pain of earache. Roasted onion has also been used in the past as a poultice for weeping ulcers and chilblains. A slice of onion is reputed to remove warts. The Greeks used onion juice as a treatment for alopecia. Onions also help to reduce high blood pressure. They protect against the harmful effects of fatty foods on the blood, and this may help prevent circulatory diseases such as coronary heart disease, thrombosis, and a wide range of conditions associated with strokes and poor circulation. Research has shown that onions may offer protection against tumors as it is believed that the sulphur compounds may help prevent the growth of tumor cells. Onion cough syrup is very easy to make. Slice an onion (or garlic) and place in a bowl, layering it with sugar or honey. Cover and leave overnight. Pour off the resulting syrup into a bottle and refrigerate.


Garlic does everything an onion does, and more! It is a natural antibiotic and decongestant, and is of particular benefit for chest infections. Try rubbing a slice of garlic on the sole of your foot; within a few minutes you will be able to detect garlic fumes on your breath! A study of 16 000 Chinese found that people with the highest intake of garlic and onions were the least likely to suffer from stomach cancer. Taken daily, it will help lower blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels.


Heated cabbage leaves can be worn inside the bra to relieve mastitis. They may also be applied to bruises. Cabbage is an excellent remedy for gastric ulcers. It speeds up oestrogen metabolism in women, which may offer protection against hormone-related tumors such as breast or ovarian tumors. It also suppresses the growth of intestinal polyps. The crucifer/brassica family of vegetables, which includes brussels sprouts and broccoli, contain a compound which can be particularly beneficial in lung, colon and breast tumors.

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McDowell's staff Herbalists can not diagnose your disease or illness. What they can do is offer a herbal program to assist with healing, after you have had advice from your doctor or specialist. If you have unexplained pain or symptoms, seek medical advice.

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