I believe that it is better to consume foods that have been locally grown, - as opposed to importing foods from ALL OVER the world. I believe that it is better for my health and better for the world as a whole. From there it is only a small step to thinking that therefore locally grown medicinal herbs are also better for my health, than those from far away.
Like you Dieter and like Burra Maluca (hello my new “manure” friend, we meet again) , I live in the South West of the Iberian continent where this Cistus ladanifer grows happily in the wild. As it happens this plant is a very potent and versatile medicinal herb. It could be used in treating a variety of problems, illnesses and diseases if only we know how to use it. That is why I would like to share what I know, how ever little that is.
Latin name: Cistus ladanifer
English name: Gum rockrose
Espanhol: Jara pringosa
It contains: Labdanum/labdandiol, borneol, cineole, geraniol esters, sesquiterpenes (abscisic acid – farnesol), tannin, flavonoids.
I have ABSOLUTELY no idea of what the above mentioned compounds are and what they do. I hope somebody out there knows and can tell us something about it.
One thing is clear, Cistus tea is not a recreational beverage. It is a medicine. Not that you could get confused. It does taste YUK!!
To make the medicinal tea,
Pour half a liter of boiling water into a glass jug,
Add one or two tips of the cistus plant – 4 to 8 grams,
Leave to brew for 10 minutes and remove plant parts from liquid,
Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
As you will see when adding the lemon juice: the opaque venomous green changes into a more pleasant transparent tea-like colour.
DO NOT FORGET THIS LEMON JUICE
Always use perfectly shaped plant tops. Stems, leaves, flowers all have the same properties.
To take the medicinal tea, you drink several SMALL amounts during the day.
Start by taking 3 dosages (30 – 50 ml each) for the first day. Then maybe 3-4 days later have 5 dosages on a day, and build it up from there. Be sure to listen to your body and when it says ENOUGH, then you are done.
My Portuguese neighbours call this plant “muita bomba”, which means something like: dynamite. Well, let me tell you they are so right. Silly me drank the entire half a liter of this bitter tea in about 3 hours. I spent the remainder of the day somewhat “outside myself” and during the early hours of the next morning I woke up thinking; I feel awful!!! Shortly after, in one violent wave, I emptied my bowels and 20 minutes later I emptied my stomach contents, in an equally violent wave. Say no more. Muita bomba. Not funny.
I spent the next days feeling very energetic while at the same time I needed many “healing sleeps”.
Myself and a few friends have been purposefully making this tea. We want to get a feel for what it does, since these plants grow all around us and could be to the benefit of our health. The old people have known this plant and have been using it all their lives. We would not want this knowledge to be lost, through disinterest or carelessness. I have started to drink this tea in a more moderate way now. Like, once a week, about 200 ml spread over the day. My friend M. drinks half a liter of the tea nicely spread over the day, every other day. I asked her: and what does it do? To her opinion – “it does a lot”. (tell me about it) So I ask, eh, a lot what?? M. says: it cleans. She does not experience averse effects. C. also drinks this tea, about twice a week, but not quite half the liter. Being English anything below the waist line is not mentioned in public. According to C. it “cleans very well”. Personally I put my money on diarrhoea. Say no more!
The Cistus ladanifer is mentioned in many articles that I looked at on the internet as a medicine to combat bacteria and fungi. Like dysentery, salmonella and Candida albicans. It is used in lung conditions, to expel mucus from the chest, when battling bronchitis, laryngitis, and colds. It can be used as a natural pesticide. Anti-worms, anti-reumatic, antiseptic. To treat ulcers, toothache, burns skin conditions. Actually, the list is quite long. I recently made a very VERY strong tea and sprayed it on my poor nectarine tree, which is covered in some kind of aphids. It made a big improvement to the tree, but certainly not all the “bugs” are gone, just that the tree looks a lot better.
Ok, there you go, that is what I know!
…and, ….uh, Burra Maluca, are you sure, after all of the above, that you still think you have found a friend.