Now, this isn't medicinal herbs, per se,but I didn't see any other appropriate forum.
When my dog was poisoned last year (giant toad), one of the folk remedies that my local friends recommended was what they called ceniza. I looked it up, and it is simply the Spanish word for ash. But according to them, pure wood ash, with no burned paper or trash mixed in, when mixed with milk, can help farm animals that have been poisoned. They say they only use it with animals, not humans; also, that it does not matter what kind of wood.
Alas, we did not succeed in saving my dog; toad venom is too strong for folk cures. But I got to thinking about this cure. When producing wood ash by means as primitive as an open fire, there will always be small chunks of burned wood mixed in. When these contact the water content of the milk, they become activated charcoal. And as any chemist will tell you, activated charcoal is known to absorb and bind toxic substances. So here is a folk cure, no doubt developed through unscientific observation by people whose livelihoods depended on paying attention to their animals, which may have a scientific explanation after all.
The ceniza cure is for animals, not humans; but strangely, for some weeks afterward, I found myself mixing ceniza into my soups, and liking the flavor.
Who here has thoughts to offer, either about this particular cure, or about what we may term "peasant science" in general?
We had a very sick cat, that we treated with activated charcoal that is sold to be used orally by people. When we found her, she was unable to use her hind legs. She could not support herself sitting up, just flopping over. Hunny is the animal expert here, and he suspected she got into some poison.
We isolated her in the house, and gave her 2 capsules of activated charcoal mixed with 1/4 small can cat food every 4 hours. Also a couple tablespoons of milk available at the same time. On the second day we started seeing improvement. It took her three weeks, but she is fully recovered. Yay! When she started poking around at the corner of the doors, we let her go back outside, and she was just fine, with full confidence in herself. But we missed her. And now she lives happily inside as a lap kitty. It's cold outside, and she isn't nosing at the door now!