Diarrhoea is the uncomfortable state of frequently passing liquefied bowel movements. The condition can be provoked by bacteria, viruses, stress, or food allergies. Natural healers of the past believed that chronic diarrhoea was due to a problem with the general diet, so remedies frequently involved food.
From time immemorial, people have chewed chunks of charred wood to absorb the poisons that can sometimes cause diarrhoea.
Directions: Purchase activated charcoal from the pharmacy and use according to package directions. In an emergency, char or burn some bread and eat it to absorb debilitating diarrhoea bacteria or viruses.
Early Greek and Roman historians mention the use of carrots as medicine. Carrots were first grown in England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth. They were so well-liked that it soon became the fashion to wear the feathery tops in women’s headdresses. The carrot was beloved because it was easy to grow, tasted delicious, and had a reputation for preventing internal “purification.” Carrot juice and carrot soup are two old cures for adult diarrhoea.
Directions: To cure diarrhoea, even a chronic case, drink two glasses of carrot juice or sip about a pint of carrot soup.
The Greek doctor Dioscorides speaks of the use of “bilberries”or blueberries ( Vaccinium myrtillus) -to cure diarrhoea. Some consider this one of the most valuable herbal remedies ever discovered. Blueberries are astringent and quickly clear up most cases of diarrhoea.
Directions: The dose is a handful or more of the fresh or frozen berries three times daily, or half a cup of blueberry juice in the morning and at night. Frozen berries are available year-round in supermarkets. To make a tea of the leaves, use one tablespoon of leaves and simmer in half a cup of water. Strain and drink. You can also purchase bilberry extract in a health food store. Add sixteen drops of the extract to a cup of calming herbal tea such as chamomile or peppermint and sip as needed.
Apple is an ancient cure for diarrhoea.
Directions: Peel, scrape, and eat. Scraping releases malic acid and pectin-both of which destroy putrefying bacteria.
Old British herbals usually advise the use of barley water for diarrhoea.
Directions: Wash and rinse one cup of barley. Place in a pint of water and bring to a boil. Throw out the water and start again with a fresh pint of water. This time, discard the barley, let the water cool, then drink. This barley water can also be used in a healing enema.
In the remote reaches of Greece, villagers avoid dehydration from diarrhoea with salt, sugar, and vinegar. To each quart pitcher of pure drinking water, the Greeks add one teaspoon of salt, four tablespoons of sugar, and half a cup of apple cider vinegar. They sip several quarts during the day. This is similar to a recipe for severe diarrhoea recommended by the World Health Organization, except that the WHO leaves out apple cider vinegar.