My son woke up WAY too early this morning. He tried to go back to sleep but it failed. Watching a video now on self-improvement though most would think it's a video on insanity. That's okay. Not everyone is ready for this stuff yet. I forgot to brag that my daughter who hasn't slept in her own bed in months (Not even for naps) took a nap in her own bed the day before yesterday. I didn't have the money but the bedding sets I wanted for the kids were on clearance so I spent the money anyway so she has new Minnie Mouse sheets and fleece blanket. I still need to get her the comforter but my son has all the pieces for Cars. We just need the money to build my husband an office in the back yard so he can have a bedroom and a bed. I still have him in the crib but I'd like to have him out of it by his second birthday. The only problem with her napping in there is my son can get to her and wake her up which eventually happened. Like her, he takes advantage of me getting busy then runs to where I don't want him to be. I got all my virtual herbarium entries prepped for class starting. This will make it faster to get them done during class. Class starts back up in 5 days so now I can focus on non-class related chores around here. I have to wash diapers today. Fun. LOL In the discussions I share, I decided not to share the lab discussions because that data ends up in my virtual herbariums. Since those are already posted, the data is redundant. I'll just share the posts that add to the topic of learning about herbs. I learned a lot on this post below about mistletoe. Have a great day!
Option 2: Mistletoe & Low Therapeutic Margins
Review the monograph in your ACHS eTextbook on Mistletoe Viscum album. Mistletoe has a low therapeutic margin. Discuss what that means for herbalists, consumers, and what precautions one should take when considering whether to use this, or any, botanicals that have a low therapeutic margin. Can these herbs have a place in modern botanical medicine?
I save the monographs for each herb from each class in a folder for that specific herb so I have the class monograph from last semester in a folder. The one in the book looks almost identical. I have to confess when I saw “sedative” and “cardiac-depressant”, I thought of how the Hatians (I think I have the right country) use the poison from the puffer fish to create “zombies” to have human slaves. The product could be the same if used improperly. The effect is the person’s heart is slowed to the point the heart beat doesn’t get detected via a stethoscope and the person is pronounced dead. Several hours later, the person wakes up in a grave but the person who poisoned them in there to dig them up and they are told they are dead. Fun stuff…
I did a quick search to see if it was exactly the same and it’s not QUITE the same. How Stuff Works (and many other sites but I’ll use this one for this purpose) states there are 4 ingredients in the powder that creates Hatian zombies, puffer fish is a neurotoxin, not the heart.
Mistletoe can reduce blood pressure, slow the heart rate, stimulate the immune system and inhibit tumors however it can be very dangerous to use because of the low margin. Generally the amount given should be computed based on body weight of the person being treated. If the margin is extremely low, a small miscalculation could mean life or death. Petersen (2018) says on page 182, a tincture of ½ ml 3 times a day is generally what is used. The Natural Medicine monograph says 20 berries and 5 leaves are also considered safe for American Mistletoe, 3 berries and 2 leaves are considered safe for European Mistletoe. Given the potency of this herb, I would be nervous prescribing this much and would have to discuss with the client the dangers of the herb and if they would prefer to give a safer one a try first. As someone with kids, my first thought with these low-margin herbs is what happens if a child gets a hold of it… This is definitely an herb that needs to be labeled KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN but, if you have a 2-year-old, that distance is very hard to calculate and even child-proofing is not guaranteed. I think I would have to include this type of information in counseling the client and provide other herbs as an option and see which they would rather try. They live in their bodies and their homes so they would know the risks of someone getting it more than I. I do think there is a place for low-margin herbs, they tend to be quite potent, but the clients MUST be fully informed of all the dangers if the herb is not respected. I can’t tell you the number of people who say “It comes from nature so it’s safe to use as I see fit”. If a person has this attitude, I would not even tell them about the low margin herbs.
Petersen, D. (2018). Herb 503: Advanced Herbal Materica Medica II. American College of Healthcare Sciences.
How Stuff Works. Retrieved from https://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/strange-creatures/zombie1.htm
Natural Medicine Database. American Mistletoe. Retrieved from https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=297
Natural Medicine Database. European Mistletoe. Retrieved from https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=917
I am currently a student at American College of Healthcare Sciences earning my Masters of Science degree in Herbal Medicine. This blog is my journey of juggling mom-life with student life. My husband is a truck driver so I'm essentially a single mom all but 3 days a month. It's a challenge but we will get through this. I complete this degree on 18 December 2019 and will take one additional semester and then be done for a while. My children need more attention from their mommy but I can't wait on getting this education done. I will do what I must for now.